National News from Yahoo

Wildfire rips through 150 homes in Northern California

By Alex Dobuzinskis LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Fire crews in California battled on Tuesday to halt the advance of a day-old wildfire that has already destroyed about 150 homes, lapped at rural schools and caused power outages that left an evacuation shelter without electricity, authorities said. The blaze, one of about a dozen major fires raging across the drought-parched state, prompted authorities to order the evacuation of about 1,000 households in and around the Northern California town of Weed, which has a population of about 3,000. ...


Tony Stewart fatal dirt-track incident to be heard by grand jury

By Steve Ginsburg (Reuters) - The case of a fatal dirt-track incident involving three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart in upstate New York last month will be referred to a grand jury, authorities said on Tuesday. Stewart, one of the biggest names in auto racing, struck and killed 20-year-old Kevin Ward during a non-NASCAR sprint car race on Aug. 9 at Canandaigua Motorsports Park. ...


Minnesota governor says Vikings' Peterson should be sidelined

By Steve Ginsburg (Reuters) - The Minnesota Vikings should sideline running back Adrian Peterson until his child abuse case works its way through the courts, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton said on Tuesday, criticizing the team's decision to reactivate the NFL player. Peterson is accused of punishing his 4-year-old son in Texas last May by beating him with a tree branch, known as a switch. The incident is one of a series of domestic abuse cases that has rocked the National Football League. ...


N.Y.: Wal-Mart levied fictional 'sugar tax' on soda

New York's attorney general has settled a false advertising investigation at Wal-Mart, saying some store personnel were citing a nonexistent "sugar tax" on soda. The attorney general's office ...


Protesters trash Ukranian lawmaker, literally

KIEV (Reuters) - Dozens of angry protesters near the Ukrainian parliament seized a prominent opposition deputy on Tuesday and dumped him in a trash container, accusing him of failing to back laws to end the turbulence in the country. The incident involved Vitaly Zhuravsky, a former member of ousted President Viktor Yanukovich's party. It was unclear why Zhuravsky drew the ire of the protesters, but the incident occurred before a parliamentary session at which lawmakers ratified an agreement with the European Union and backed laws to provide separatist-held regions with a special status. ...


NASA may reveal 'space taxi' company pick for ISS missions today

NASA will make a major announcement on the future of U.S. Space agency officials will hold a press conference at 4 p.m. EDT (2000 GMT), and could unveil the selection of one or more private space taxis by aerospace companies to move forward on the path toward providing astronaut transportation services to International Space Station for NASA.  You can watch NASA's commercial crew announcement live on Space.com, courtesy of NASA TV. According to a NASA statement, today's announcement will discuss "the return of human spaceflight launches to the United States.


Release the kraken! Check out this defrosted giant squid

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — It was a calm morning in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea, during the season when the sun never sets, when Capt. John Bennett and his crew hauled up a creature with tentacles like fire hoses and eyes like dinner plates from a mile below the surface.


Massive horse masticates micro-donut with gusto

While it is likely not a typical daily snack for horses, the mini doughnut has managed to find a way into the heart of this particular one. Watch Teake the horse move from tentative sniffing of the snack to quickly gobbling it up, clearly relishing every moment of his treat. Credit: YouTube/ShaneFirth


St. Louis grand jury term extended as it hears Ferguson evidence

By Carey Gillam (Reuters) - The St. Louis grand jury hearing evidence in the case of the white police officer who fatally shot unarmed black teenager Michael Brown last month has been given an extra four months to weigh possible criminal charges against the officer, officials said on Tuesday. The prosecutor's office still hopes to conclude its presentation of evidence to the grand jury in October but now has until Jan. 7 to do, said Edward Magee, a spokesman for St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch. ...


Al-Qaida call to unite Islamic fronts

Two al Qaeda branches urged warring militant factions in Iraq and Syria to stop fighting each other and unite against a U.S.-led alliance.


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