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Monday, July 20, 2009
· Steve McNair's Alcohol Level Was Twice Legal Limit. Authorities say former NFL star Steve McNair had a blood-alcohol level twice Tennessee's legal limit for driving when his girlfriend shot him to death.
· Citigroup seizes resort where AIG held retreat. The St. Regis Monarch Beach in Dana Point resort where American International Group Inc. sponsored a luxury retreat after receiving federal bailout money has been seized by Citigroup.
· U.S. bill for banks bailout could cost $24 trillion. The government's maximum exposure to financial institutions since 2007 could total nearly $24 trillion, or about $80,000 for every American, the watchdog overseeing the federal government financial bailout said Monday.
· The 10-year-old who helped Apollo 11. On July 23, 1969, as Apollo 11 hurtled back towards Earth, there was a problem - a problem only a kid could solve. It sounds like something out of a movie, but that's what it came down to as Apollo 11 sped back towards Earth after landing on the moon in 1969.
· Lawsuit: dentist dropped tools down man's throat. A Florida dentist is being sued for allegedly dropping tools down the throat of an elderly patient — twice. Relatives of 90-year-old Charles Gaal Jr. recently filed the suit in circuit court accusing Dr. Wesley Meyers of negligence.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Synergism [syn·er·gism] n. Interaction of discrete agencies or conditions where the total effect is greater than the sum of the individual parts. "All the stockholders saw considerable synergism in the merger." [also Synergy].
· Pennsylvania Boy, 10, Accidentally Shoots Friend With Shotgun. Allegheny County police say a 10-year-old boy is in critical condition after he was accidentally shot by another 10-year-old boy in the Pittsburgh suburb of Mount Oliver.
· Suspect's wife, her relatives among 6 slain. The wife of a man suspected of killing five people in Tennessee and one in Alabama was among the victims found in southern Tennessee, along with her son, father and brother, police said Sunday.
· Columbus Man Killed When Homemade Plane Crashes. Police say the two-seat, single-engine plane was taking off shortly after 6 p.m. when it hit a maintenance hangar that was about 50 yards from the runway.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
· 10 Mexican police officers held in killings of 12 federal agents. A federal judge ordered 10 municipal police officers arrested Saturday in connection with the slayings of 12 off-duty federal agents in southwestern Mexico.
· Ambulance worker sues over lifting injury caused by obese patient. An ambulance worker is suing the Australian government for more than $700,000 over injuries he says he suffered lifting an obese patient into an ambulance.
· Postal worker sentenced for stealing cash from birthday cards. A man who stole cash from children's birthday cards while working at the U.S. Postal Service facility in Olivehurst, California will serve five months in federal prison
· MSNBC challenges credibility of new CNN commerical. In a new television spot aimed at getting advertisers to spend more on the network, CNN proclaims it is "No. 1, with more viewers than Fox and MSNBC." The ad goes on to say that CNN has held the top spot for seven years in a row. That will be a big news flash to the other two networks, considering that both topped CNN in the ratings.
· Oscar Mayer Wienermobile crashes into Wis. home. One southern Wisconsin homeowner is probably not in love with the Oscar Mayer wiener. The famed hot dog's Wienermobile crashed Friday into the deck and garage of a home near Milwaukee.
· California officer admits to sexual assault while on duty. A former California police officer accused of sexually assaulting a motorist during a traffic stop pleaded guilty in federal court, federal prosecutors said Friday.
· Eagle Scout Lost on Mountain Fined $25,000 for Rescue. A Massachusetts teenager who spent three nights alone on Mount Washington after he sprained an ankle and veered off marked trails has been fined more than $25,000 for the cost of his rescue.
· Pirated copies of Orwell books pulled from Kindle. Users of Amazon.com's e-reader device were surprised and unsettled over the past day to receive notice that George Orwell works they had purchased, including "1984" and "Animal Farm," had been removed from their Kindle and their money refunded.
· Black Philly police sue over message board. A group of black Philadelphia police officers filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against their department, alleging an online forum geared toward city police is "infested with racist, white supremacist and anti-African-American content."
· Former CBS anchor Walter Cronkite dies. Walter Cronkite, the CBS anchorman known as both "Uncle Walter" for his easygoing, measured delivery and "the most trusted man in America" for his rectitude and gravitas, has died. Cronkite was 92 years old.
· House passes $700 million bill to protect wild horses. Galloping to the aid of the nation's wild horses and burros, the House voted Friday to rescue them from the possibility of a government-sponsored slaughter and give them millions more acres to roam. Enacting the Restore our American Mustangs Act will cost about $200 million over the next five years, and another $500 million by the Bureau of Land Management to acquire an additional 20 million acres.
· Dad digs son's grave to save on funeral. After cancer took the life of a 15-year-old boy, his family dug the teen's grave themselves to save on funeral costs and also received assistance from complete strangers to give him a proper burial.
· Tiger Woods misses British Open cut. World number one Tiger Woods slumped to a four-over-par 74 in Friday's second round at the British Open and missed the cut in a major championship for only the second time as a professional.
· Fire Destroys Miami Beach 'Castle.' A fire broke out at a well-known mansion on Miami Beach Friday morning. The house, which was currently on the market for $6.9 million, boasted iron gates, gargoyles, turrets, towers, parapets, a draw bridge and a 65,000-gallon salt water moat filled with sand sharks.
· Goldman Sachs' Financial Boom: A Political Mess for Obama? In a clear departure from the historical norm, the White House is not cheering the return of huge profits to Wall Street. On the contrary, the recent windfalls at Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan, and the promise of giant year-end paydays for banking executives and traders, has caused a bit of consternation in the West Wing, coming as it does so soon after the taxpayer bailouts saved the entire financial system from total collapse.
· BMW heiress in new sex video blackmail case. Three men have been arrested on suspicion of trying to blackmail Germany's richest woman with footage of her steamy encounters with a con man known as the Swiss Gigolo, prosecutors said Friday.
· Debbie Rowe sues woman over TV interview. Michael Jackson's ex-wife Deborah Rowe is striking back at a woman who claimed in a TV interview that Rowe told her she didn't want custody of the pop star's children.
· Starbucks adds booze to its menu at Seattle location. The Seattle-based gourmet coffee chain said it is changing the name of one of its existing stores in its hometown to a name that reflects the neighborhood location. The store will be called 15th Avenue Coffee and Tea. It will open next week and will serve coffee and tea as well as wine and beer.
· 'Child Bride' Says Sex With Pastor Began at Age 9. A 9-year-old girl was considered too young to answer the office phone at evangelist Tony Alamo's compound, but old enough for frequent sex with the ministry leader, she alleged at his federal trial on child-sex charges.
· Missouri withheld lake safety report. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon said Thursday that his Department of Natural Resources was wrong to withhold a report showing unsafe levels of E. coli in the Lake of the Ozarks in May. DNR officials were concerned the report might affect tourism in the lake's most popular season.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Autonomous [au·ton·o·mous] adj. 1. Independent in mind or judgment; self-directed. 2. Not controlled by others or by outside forces; independent: "an autonomous judiciary."
· 'Frugal' SC gov flew in style. South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford shed his fiscal conservatism on several taxpayer-funded international trips, including a South American jaunt that included time with his mistress, choosing expensive first-class or business-class seats while his aides sat in coach.
· Man Arrested in Wife's Death on Cruise to Mexico. Carnival says the 55-year-old woman was killed during a domestic dispute on Tuesday evening as the ship was midway through a five-night trip to Cabo San Lucas.
· NASA lost moon footage, but Hollywood restores it. NASA could put a man on the moon but didn't have the sense to keep the original video of the live TV transmission. In an embarrassing acknowledgment, the space agency said Thursday that it must have erased the Apollo 11 moon footage years ago so that it could reuse the videotape. But now Hollywood is coming to the rescue.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
· Raped girl went for help, raped again. A postal worker charged with four sexual attacks assaulted one of the victims when she came to him for help after she had been raped by another man a short time before, police said.
· Toddler Rescued After Drifting Eight Miles Down River in Toy Truck. A three-year-old toddler who drove his battery-powered toy truck into a river survived by clinging to it as he was swept almost eight miles downstream.
· Woman who beat her mom wanted to go surfing. A San Diego resident severely beat her mother after the 60-year-old woman refused to take her surfing, a prosecutor told a Superior Court judge yesterday.
· Stage for French Madonna show collapses; 1 dead. The Marseille fire department says a stage being built for a Madonna concert in the French port city has collapsed, leaving one dead and six injured.
· Woman catches on fire outside rehabilitation center. A 42-year-old female caught on fire Wednesday morning outside a Peoria rehabilitation center. Employees found the woman sitting on an outside patio engulfed in fire.
· Social Security spends $700,000 on Phoenix conference. A Social Security Administration motivational management conference held at the Biltmore, a high-end Valley resort, cost $700,000, the SSA told the ABC15 Investigators.
· Video emerges of Michael Jackson's hair catching fire in 1984 Pepsi ad. Never-before-seen footage of Michael Jackson’s hair catching fire while he filmed an ad in 1984 - the accident said to have led to his addiction to painkillers and plastic surgery - has been released by a US magazine.
· Calif. tax officials: Legal pot would bring $1.4 billion. A bill to tax and regulate marijuana in California like alcohol would generate nearly $1.4 billion in revenue for the cash-strapped state, according to an official analysis released Wednesday by tax officials.
· Police chief blames bar for getting two of his officers fired. After two area police officers were seen drinking and exposing their buttocks to families, Horry County Police Chief Johnny Morgan said he has "suggested" to his officers that they avoid attending events at The Boathouse Waterway Bar and Grill.
· Eighth Person Charged in Fla. Couple's Deaths. Eight people have been charged in a precisely executed, deadly break-in at the Florida home of a couple with 13 special needs children, but authorities are still seeking at least one more accomplice who they believe failed his assignment to disable the house's surveillance system.
· Democrat's health plan a poison pill for many New Yorkers. Congressional plans to fund a massive health-care overhaul could have a job-killing effect on New York, creating a tax rate of nearly 60 percent for the state's top earners and possibly pressuring small-business owners to shed workers.
· Playmates in Lettuce Mark National Veggie Dog Day. Lunch time on Capitol Hill got a little more interesting Wednesday as PETA hosted its annual veggie dog lunch, turning the heads of vegetarians and meat eaters alike.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
· PETA suggests nondairy Michael Jackson sculpture. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals have come up with an idea for sculptor Sarah Pratt and the Iowa State Fair - instead of using butter for a Michael Jackson sculpture, how about a nondairy spread?
· Fort Worth mayor apologizes for raid on gay bar. Mayor Mike Moncrief apologized for a raid on a gay bar that sparked claims of brutality and procedure violations after several members of a gay rights group were escorted out of a City Council meeting.
· Court Praises Drunk Driver. Travis Peterson knew he was too drunk to drive home after an outdoor concert three years ago at Alpine Valley south of Milwaukee. So he fell asleep in his car, only to be awoken by a state trooper.
· 'World's Oldest' Mom Gave Birth at 66, Dead at 69. A Spanish woman who deceived a U.S. fertility clinic about her age and become the oldest woman to give birth has died at 69, leaving behind 2-year-old twins.
· Photos of Michael Jackson Show Signs of Vitiligo and Needle Punctures. Exclusive photos of Michael Jackson obtained by ABC News show a serious wound on the pop star's right leg, which a medical expert said appears to be surrounded by unusual needle punctures.
· Keeping body in fridge is legal, officials say. Maryland prosecutors said it is legal to not report a death and to put the body in a freezer - as was discovered in a Glen Burnie apartment over the weekend.
· Georgia Officer Accused of K-9 Abuse Resigns. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is looking into claims that a Gainesville police officer tied an electric collar to the dog's genitals as a way of teaching it not to bite.
· 40 years after moon landing: Why can't we cure cancer? Forty years ago this month, humans landed on the moon for the first time. Life Science asked Christopher Wanjek why, four decades later, we can't cure cancer.
· Man Uses Beer to Lure Drunk Intruder Out of Home. A homeowner in Maine used a beer to entice an intoxicated intruder to leave. The intruder apparently didn't realize that it was a nonalcoholic beer, police said.
· Air Force Project Being Probed Is Linked to Murtha. When an Air Force command in north Florida sought new battlefield technologies, Rep. John P. Murtha (D-Pa.) steered millions in federal dollars its way to hire defense contractors. The research effort at the Pensacola Air Force base fell apart, however, when investigators found evidence that it was used to improperly pay a series of companies linked to Murtha.
· Stiff sentence sought for man who killed wife with barbecue fork. King County prosecutors plan to seek an exceptional sentence against a Seattle man who fatally stabbed his estranged wife to death with a barbecue fork in front of their two young children, ages 4 and 5, last year.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
· Billboard Claiming Martin Luther King Was Republican Angers Black Activists. A billboard proclaiming that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican has stirred a religious and political hornets' nest in Houston, where a church leader is trying to draw black voters into the Republican Party.
· West Virginia man arrested after allegedly having sex with dog. A man was arrested over the weekend after allegedly breaking into a Farmington home and having sex with the dog inside, according to a criminal complaint filed in Marion County Magistrate Court.
· Lavish Kennedy book to sell for $1,000 a copy. At a time when publishers are scrambling to keep customers willing to pay $26 for a hardcover book instead of $9.99 for an electronic version, the publisher of Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s forthcoming memoir is going in the opposite direction - issuing a limited edition it plans to sell for $1,000 a copy.
· Jet makes landing with football-sized hole. A Southwest Airlines jet made an emergency landing in Charleston, West Virginia, on Monday after a football-sized hole in its fuselage caused the cabin to depressurize, an airline spokeswoman said.
· Woman dies after sticking head out of truck. A 20-year-old Ocala woman was killed early Tuesday morning when she apparently struck her head on a mailbox while leaning out the window of a moving truck.
· Company to pay Florida $2 million in gas price-gouging. Morgan Stanley reached a record-setting $2.3 million price-gouging settlement with state officials over allegations that one of the company's subsidiaries overcharged retailers for gas after Hurricane Ike, running up the price of fuel in Florida. As is customary, the state of Florida will receive $1.3 million, the attorney's fees $1 million - and consumers: zip.
· Life in prison for mom in child sex case. A Middletown mother — convicted of prostituting her 11-year-old daughter to a registered sex offender for money and drugs — has been sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 10 years.
· Sotomayor defends 'wise Latina' remark. Sonia Sotomayor, President Barack Obama's pick to become the high court's first Hispanic and third woman, responded to sharp Republican criticism of a 2001 speech in which she suggested a "wise Latina" would usually reach better conclusions than a white man without similar experiences.
· Drunk Dad tells 11-year-old: 'Drive Us Home.' Las Vegas police say last Thursday, Jonathan Aguilar's father became so intoxicated that he told his kid to get behind the wheel and drive them home, so the 11-year-old hopped in the driver's seat.
· Oops: Obama's Teleprompter Breaks Mid-Speech. President Barack Obama had just started a spirited defense of his economic stimulus plan on Monday when one of his teleprompter screens came loose, crashed to the floor and shattered into pieces.
· Bank robber cites economy during holdup. A pistol-wielding robber blamed the nation's troubled economy for a holdup this morning at a northwest Houston bank, authorities said. While demanding cash from a teller at a Compass bank branch, the armed robber said, “I'm only doing this to eat. They're not letting me work,“ FBI officials said.
· United guitar video shows online gripes can get results. YouTube sensation Dave Carroll got his payback Friday when United Airlines donated $3,000, in his name, to support music education through the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.
Monday, July 13, 2009
· Man allegedly punched over barking dog dies. A man accused of sucker-punching an Abington Marine over a dispute about a barking dog could face more serious criminal charges now that the victim has succumbed to brain injuries.
· Wife given 18 months in sex-game death of husband. A judge has sentenced a Tennessee woman to 18 months in jail in the death of her husband during a sex game. She was accused of tying up and gagging her husband as part of a bondage fantasy and leaving him alone in their mobile home for 20 hours while she was with another man she had met on the Internet.
· Detroit public school system is $259 million in the hole, faces bankruptcy. The Detroit Public Schools may have no choice but to file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy, which would make it the first big-city school district to use bankruptcy court to avoid paying millions to vendors, employees and bondholders, experts said Thursday.
· Joe Jackson Makes Bid for Care of Michael's Kids. While his role as the driving force in the Jackson family success has never been in question, father Joe Jackson's parenting - especially with Michael - has long been a subject of scrutiny and controversy. So it's all the more surprising that the driven patriarch is now working to forge a larger role for himself in the lives of Michael's three children.
· Budget deficit tops $1 trillion for first time. Nine months into the fiscal year, the federal deficit has topped $1 trillion for the first time. The imbalance is intensifying fears about higher interest rates and inflation, and already pressuring the value of the dollar.
· Swearing can make you feel better, lessen pain. Researchers from the school of psychology at Britain's Keele University have found swearing can make you feel better as it can have a "pain-lessening effect," according to a recent study.
· Lose your wallet? Hopefully you were carrying a baby picture. In a recent study, the baby photograph wallets had the highest return rate, with 88 per cent of the 40 being sent back. Next came the puppy, the family and the elderly couple, with 53 per cent, 48 and 28 respectively. At 20 per cent and 15, the charity card and control wallets had the lowest return rates.
· Woman Found Dead in NYC High-Rise Tied, Gagged. A woman found dead in a skyscraper where a cleaning woman had vanished days earlier was bound and gagged and had a gold crucifix taped to her mouth, police said Sunday.
· "Idol" host Ryan Seacrest signs $45 million deal. Ryan Seacrest is Fox's 45-Million-Dollar Man. The "American Idol" host has closed a major new three-year deal with CKX, parent of "Idol" producer 19 Entertainment, worth $15 million per year.
· Children Recant Sex-Abuse Tales After Father's 20-Year Prison Stint. Former Vancouver, Washington police officer Clyde Ray Spencer spent nearly 20 years in prison after he was convicted of sexually molesting his son and daughter. Now, the children say it never happened.
· Torched Topless Coffee Shop Owner Vows to Rebuild. The owner of a topless coffee shop in central Maine that burned down in an arson fire will appear before the local planning board seeking to build a replacement shop.
· Alleged bank robber tried getting ride from undercover officer. Just two blocks from the Citizens Bank at 2815 E. Genesee in Saginaw that he allegedly robbed five minutes earlier, Mark White, 50, flagged down Saginaw Township Detective Scott Jackson of the auto theft division for a ride.
· Suspected burglar arrested after he shoots himself in the foot. Kelly Roan, 28, and his girlfriend might have gotten away with multiple burglaries, police say, if he hadn't shot himself in the foot. Literally. [D]
· Smoking Ban May Strike Military. U.S. soldiers are trained to handle deadly weapons and smoke out enemies but they may soon find that they aren't allowed to handle cigarettes and light up a smoke. [D]
· Teen Girl Falls In Open Manhole While Texting. It was an accident waiting to happen - an open sewer and a 15-year-old girl who was texting while she walked. Alexa Longueira was walking on Staten Island Wednesday evening when she felt the earth move and was plunged into smelly darkness.
· Update: Missing mom's body found in air duct of building where she vanished. The body of a Manhattan mom who disappeared from her office-cleaning job was found Saturday in a 12th floor air conditioning duct, police said.
· Fat Northwest flight attendants cry foul over dress size limits. The union that represents flight attendants who worked for Northwest Airlines before it was bought by Delta Air Lines is crying foul over Delta's failure to offer dress sizes larger than size 18 for its signature red dress uniform designed by Richard Tyler. A union representative said "The job isn't about being sexy. It's about safety," and wants all attendants to be able to wear the stylish dress.
· Pilots May Have Averted Disaster Aboard Obama Campaign Plane. Skillful piloting may have prevented a disaster for President Obama and his campaign last summer, a former federal safety official said Friday.
· Death and taxes: Big IRS bill looms for MJ estate. Creditors and heirs of Michael Jackson hoping for a cut of his musical empire will have to line up with the Internal Revenue Service, which could lay claim to $80 million or more in federal estate taxes.
· Jackson May Play London After All, Via Footage. Michael Jackson would have turned 51 on Aug. 29, and the promoters of his planned This Is It tour are hoping to celebrate with a concert. It would take place in London and feature Jackson's rehearsal footage and appearances by members of his family. In other words, it would be a Michael Jackson concert - with all the ingredients except the King of Pop himself.
· Cemetery workers made $300K in gravedigging scheme. Four former employees accused of digging up bodies and reselling plots at a historic black cemetery near Chicago made about $300,000 in a scheme believed to have stretched back at least four years, authorities said Friday.
· Wireless Cybercriminals Target Clueless Vacationers. Vacationers on their way to fun in the sun, or already there, think they're using designated Wi-Fi access points. But instead, they're signing on to fraudulent networks and hand-delivering everything on their laptops to the crooks. A check at 27 airports found fake Wi-Fi hot spots set up by hackers phishing for suckers — and there were plenty of suckers to be had.
· Signs of Progress or Stimulus Spending Outrage? Road signs with the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act logo are plastered at stimulus-funded construction project sites around America. The signs cost $500 apiece in Maryland and New Hampshire, $1,700 in Georgia, $2,000 in Pennsylvania and New York, and $3,000 per project in New Jersey. For the price of one $2,000 sign, 40 potholes could be repaired.
· Strong wind, turbulence caused Fossett crash. Strong wind and turbulence likely caused the millionaire adventurer Steve Fossett to lose control of his plane and plummet to his death, US federal safety investigators said Thursday.
· Jackson's pill consumption emerges. Singer Michael Jackson took more than 10 Xanax pills a night, asking his employees to get the prescription medicine under their names and also personally traveling to doctors' offices in other states to obtain them, said a confidential document.
· "Cash for Clunkers" wins over U.S. drivers, dealers. Having driven the equivalent of six smoke-belching laps of the planet, Tony Metzler figured his aging Chevrolet Blazer SUV would not make a good trade for a new car. Until now that is. With a $1 billion federal "Cash for Clunkers" program that pays consumers $3,500 or $4,500 in credit to swap aging gas-guzzlers for new, more fuel efficient models, he made the plunge.
· Man Gored to Death During Pamplona Bull Run. A charging bull gored a young man to death Friday at Pamplona's San Fermin festival, the first such fatality in nearly 15 years. Nine others were injured in a particularly dangerous and chaotic chapter of the running of the bulls.
· Billy Mays remains a TV pitchman, even in death. Death won't still the voice of Billy Mays or his mighty powers of persuasion. Viewers will continue to find the boisterous, bearded TV pitchman hawking household products for the indefinite future. And at least one of his commercials is being introduced posthumously.
· After raising $845 for his re-election campaign, Roland Burris decides not to run. Democratic U.S. Sen. Roland Burris, his political prospects and personal legacy weakened by controversy, is expected to announce Friday he will not seek election to the seat he was appointed to by Rod Blagojevich after the then-governor's arrest, sources close to Burris said. So far, he raised $845 with more than $111,000 in debt, a campaign filing showed.
· McNair taped suicide prevention ad before death. Former NFL quarterback Steve McNair taped a youth suicide prevention public service announcement before he was fatally shot in a murder-suicide, Tennessee health officials said.
· French tourists seen as world's worst. French tourists are the worst in the world, coming across as bad at foreign languages, tight-fisted and arrogant, according to a survey of 4,500 hotel owners across the world.
· Woman Vanishes While Working at New York City High-Rise. Police are trying to figure out what happened to a cleaning woman who vanished midway through her shift Tuesday evening at an office tower a few hundred feet from the World Trade Center reconstruction site.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
· Latest Metro Train Fail: Sleeping on the Job. In the latest Metro fail, a 14-year-old boy took video of an operator apparently nodding off while a train is speeding down Green Line tracks between College Park and Greenbelt.
· Train hits car in Mich.; 5 thought to be teens die. An Amtrak passenger train carrying about 170 people struck a car that had skirted a gate at a road crossing near Detroit on Thursday, killing all five people in the sedan, authorities said. The victims were believed to be teens.
· Woman admits she falsely accused man of rape. A Newport Beach woman was sentenced to 127 days in jail after pleading guilty today to trying to extort $15,000 from a man she met online and falsely reporting that he raped her, county prosecutors said.
· Oops! LAPD's public database omits nearly 40% of this year's crimes. The map, touted as a way for residents to monitor the safety of their neighborhoods, doesn't include about 19,000 serious crimes reported in other LAPD data. Officials say they're looking into it.
· Billions in aid go to areas that backed Obama. Billions of dollars in federal aid delivered directly to the local level to help revive the economy have gone overwhelmingly to places that supported President Obama in last year's presidential election. The reports show the 872 counties that supported Obama received about $69 per person, on average. The 2,234 counties that supported McCain received about $34.
· Update: Michelle Obama flashes expensive taste, carries
$6,000 $875 leather purse. Michelle Obama showed off her more expensive taste in fashion by carrying a $875 VBH black leather manila clutch while strolling the wooded landscape outside of Moscow, Russia.
· Sen. Ensign Paid Mistress $25,000 Severance, Husband Says. The sex scandal engulfing Sen. John Ensign deepened Wednesday after his former mistress's husband revealed new details about the relationship, saying the senator paid the woman over $25,000 in severance when she stopped working for him.
· Jackson's dermatologist: I warned him about drug. Michael Jackson's dermatologist says he on occasion gave the pop star the painkiller Demerol but warned him about using the powerful sedative Diprivan.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Visceral [vis·cer·al] adj. 1. Instinctual: proceeding from instinct rather than from reasoned thinking or intellect. "A visceral business decision." 2. Emotional: characterized by or showing crude or elemental emotions.
· Miss Obama's peacenik T-shirt sends a message to G8 leaders. Her father had just won agreement from the Russians to cut back on the world's stockpiles of nuclear weapons. And Barack Obama's eldest daughter made her own statement on the issue - even if it was merely a fashion statement.
· Cemetery workers accused of digging up graves, reselling plots. Employees at a historic African-American cemetery near Chicago allegedly dug up more than 100 graves as part of an off-the-books scheme to resell burial plots to unsuspecting customers, authorities said Wednesday.
· Six charged with defrauding investors out of $140 million. Six men have been charged with conspiracy to commit securities fraud, accused in a $140 million investment fraud and stock manipulation scheme.
· Banks to Stop Accepting California IOUs After Friday. After taking multibillion-dollar bailouts from the federal government, some of the nation's biggest banks are declining to lend a hand with a different financial mess: the California budget stalemate.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
· McNair shot dead in sleep by girlfriend. Former NFL star Steve McNair was shot dead in his sleep last week by a 20-year-old girlfriend distraught about mounting financial problems and her belief that he was seeing someone else, police said Wednesday.
· Politics part of Palin-hack jury selection. The lawyer for a Tennessee college student accused of hacking into Sarah Palin's e-mail wants to query prospective jurors about their political preferences.
· Federal buildings get 'F' after bombs smuggled in. Plainclothes investigators sent to test security at federal buildings in four U.S. cities smuggled bomb components through guard posts at all 10 of the sites they visited.
· Update: Mechelle McNair Didn't Know of Affair. An associate said Wednesday the wife of ex-NFL quarterback Steve McNair didn't know about Sahel Kazemi before the 20-year-old woman shot her husband four times on the Fourth of July. Kazemi's family told reporters that the woman was so confident McNair was divorcing his wife of 12 years that she was preparing to sell her furniture and move in with the former quarterback.
· Metrorail Operator Caught Texting on Job. Metro spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein said the operator was suspended for a week without pay after officials learned of the incident. A passenger on the blue line in Alexandria apparently recorded the incident with a cellphone camera, then posted it to YouTube.
· Woman Hangs Self on Webcam, Survives. A Phoenix woman has been rescued after attempting to hang herself live on her webcam. The 23-year-old got into a fight with her boyfriend and tried to kill herself on the internet - and police are worried that other people may have been watching.
· Stimulus: Where's the $787 Billion? A Seattle company that tracks federal spending estimates that only $65 billion of the $420 billion that was in the stimulus package for contract and infrastructure spending has gone out the door.
· Couple Arrested for Digging Up Dead Girl. An Oklahoma couple has been arrested in Montana for investigation of burying a young girl then digging up her remains and moving the body from state to state for more than a year, authorities said Tuesday.
· Jury sees videos of La. congressman accepting cash. A federal jury has seen video of a former Louisiana congressman accepting a suitcase filled with $100,000 in cash outside a northern Virginia hotel.
· Stun Guns Used on Kids Visiting Florida Prisons. More than 40 children shocked with stun guns while visiting prisons in April may not have been the first ones zapped, according to a report released Tuesday.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
· Of the 15 "foreclosure rescue" companies in Maine, not one has saved a house from foreclosure. State regulators have ordered 15 so-called "foreclosure rescue" companies to stop doing business in Maine. According to the Bureau of Consumer Protection, none of the companies saved a single home from foreclosure, but they still collected more than $36,000 from residents in upfront payments.
· Update: Marion Barry Hired Woman During Romance. D.C. Council member Marion Barry hired ex-girlfriend Donna Watts-Brighthaupt to work on his staff shortly after they began dating last year, according to city records.
· LA detective from King trial kills self at station. A Los Angeles police detective who testified at the Rodney King trial has shot herself to death after walking into a sheriff's station. Police said Tuesday that sheriff's deputies are investigating what prompted Detective Susan Clemmer to kill herself.
· Michael Jackson to be buried without his brain. Michael Jackson will be buried this week– without his brain. As his family tries to finalize details for the King of Pop’s funeral on Tuesday they have been told it will be held back for tests.
· Iowa Woman Owes Almost $300,000 for Vet's Care. After caring for Vietnam veteran Roger Lennon for more than a dozen years, two months after his death Sarah Miller received a bill from the state of Iowa for almost $300,000 for medical care he received at a state-run veteran's home.
· Madoff Hires Consultant to Find Best Possible Jail. Bernard Madoff has hired a veteran prison consultant to help him to find the best possible jail in which to serve his 150-year sentence for Wall Street’s biggest fraud. [D]
· Need Some Weed? Just Check Twitter. Some California pot sellers are living the high life this summer — because high-tech social-networking sites such as MySpace, Facebook and Twitter are allowing them to legally swap street corners for the Internet.
· Bookkeeper who embezzled $10 million gets 18 years. A former bookkeeper accused of embezzling nearly $10 million from her company and spending some of the money on 400 pairs of shoes has been sentenced to 18 years in prison.
· Social Security codes cracked. For all the concern about identity theft, researchers say there's a surprisingly easy way for the technology-savvy to figure out the precious nine digits of Americans' Social Security numbers.
· Woman seeks to decrease $1.92M fine for downloads. Attorneys for a Minnesota woman ordered to pay $1.92 million for illegally sharing copyright-protected music are asking a federal judge to reduce the damages she must pay, or grant a new trial.
· Mass. mom pleads not guilty to denying son meds. A woman accused of withholding cancer treatment from her autistic son by not filling prescriptions and misleading his doctors pleaded not guilty Monday to an attempted murder charge in the 9-year-old boy's death.
· Drunken breast-feeding arrest touches off debate. Police responding to a domestic disturbance arrived at Stacey Anvarinia's home to find the mother breast-feeding her 6-week-old baby in front of them. And she was drunk, they said.
Monday, July 6, 2009
· Update: Ex-NFL star McNair's girlfriend bought gun. The pistol found at the scene of the shooting that killed former NFL quarterback Steve McNair and his girlfriend was purchased by the woman two nights before, police said Monday.
· Higher minimum wage coming soon. The federal minimum wage is set to increase later this month as the job market shows signs of further decay. The federal minimum wage will go to $7.25 an hour on July 24 from its current level of $6.55.
· Pair charged with stealing skunk from pet store. Authorities arrested two people connected to the theft of a baby skunk from a pet store. The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office reported that the skunk was stolen Wednesday from Animal Crackers Pet Store. The animal was valued at $400.
· Michael Jackson's Doctor Not Licensed to Prescribe Controlled Drugs in California. According to federal drug regulations, Michael Jackson's personal physician couldn’t legally prescribe even a powerful cough medicine for the King of Pop in California, and he couldn’t go to the pharmacy to get drugs for him, either.
· Formula One Racing Chief Praises Hitler, Saddam Hussein. Bernie Ecclestone, the man who controls Formula One auto racing, said Friday that he preferred totalitarian regimes to democracies and praised Adolf Hitler for his ability to "get things done."
· Budget airline 'to make passengers stand.' The low-cost airline would charge passengers less on "bar stools" with seat belts around their waists. Michael O'Leary, Ryanair's chief executive, has already held talks with US plane manufacturer Boeing about designing an aircraft with standing room.
· Man arrested for defacing TV at Sears. A Cincinnati man was charged with criminal damage after taking a permanent marker to a $1600 plasma TV at Sears. According to WCPO, Jordan Puckett, 20, was caught on surveillance video drawing a one foot penis on the screen.
· Bankruptcies low in states that don't seize wages. States that allow debt collectors to seize consumers' wages have sharply higher bankruptcy rates than neighboring states that prohibit or strictly limit the practice.
· Jackson's Doc Tight-Lipped on Drug. The lawyer for the doctor who was at Michael Jackson's home the day he died tells TMZ he did not give Jackson OxyContin or Demerol that day, but he wouldn't sdiscuss the powerful anesthesia found at the singer's home.
· Former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry Arrested. The United States Park Police said Barry, a current D.C. Council member, was arrested Saturday in Washington after a woman flagged down an officer and complained that Barry was stalking her.
· Update: Girlfriend suspected in NFL star's death. Former NFL star quarterback Steve McNair was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds in a Nashville condominium Saturday. Police hinted he was murdered by a girlfriend who then turned the gun on herself.
· 1.6 million seek 8,750 Jackson memorial tickets . Some 1.6 million fans had registered for a chance at fewer than 9,000 tickets to Michael Jackson's memorial service by the time registration closed Saturday, organizers said.
· Former quarterback McNair dead, police say. Former NFL quarterback Steve McNair was killed in a shooting in Nashville, Tennessee, authorities said Saturday. Police said they found McNair and a woman shot to death in a Nashville residence.
· Unemployed Ariz. Mom Leads Sons on Crime Spree. Cynthia Mary Roberson is an unemployed mother who led her 12- and 14-year-old sons and their friends to commit at least 20 armed robberies and assaults, including the beating of a teenage boy who had nothing more than an orange lollipop.
· Mississippi to Auction 855,000 Cartons of Contraband Cigarettes. The FBI said the raids are part of an ongoing investigation into a tobacco black market with ties to Mississippi, Kentucky and South Carolina. The estimated value of the seized cigarettes is $20 million.
· Amsterdam considering financial help for prostitutes. Amsterdam city council is turning its attention to a pressing problem for one of the city's key business sectors - banking and credit for prostitutes who can't get accounts from mainstream institutions.
· Ruth Madoff Asks to Keep Her Fur Coat. The U.S. Marshals Service on Thursday took possession of disgraced financier Bernard Madoff's $7 million Manhattan home, an action that forced his wife to move elsewhere despite her plea to stay.
· Funeral for TV pitchman Billy Mays. Most mourners wore stickers showing a cartoon image of his distinctive bearded face. The six pallbearers did not wear suits, instead choosing bright blue button-down shirts like the ones Mays wore on TV. At the conclusion of the ceremony, they gave a "thumbs up," just as Mays did at the end of one of his commercials.
· Oops: Teacher Accidentally Gave Self-Made Sex Tape to 5th Graders. A Northern California elementary school teacher sent her students home for the summer with a video of class memories, only the DVD included six seconds of her having sex on a couch.
· Palin quitting early as Alaska governor. Gov. Sarah Palin announced Friday that she will step down as Alaska's chief executive by the end of the month. She will not seek election to a second gubernatorial term in 2010.
· Government health care plan: Pay your health insurance premiums, or face fines. In a revamped health care system envisioned by senators, people would be required to carry health insurance just like motorists must get auto coverage now. Those who refuse to sign up would face fines of more than $1,000. The Congressional Budget Office estimated the fines would raise around $36 billion over 10 years.
· Cynthia McKinney Remains Imprisoned in Israel After Gaza-Bound Boat Is Seized. Former U.S. lawmaker and Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney and several other human rights activists remained in an Israeli prison Thursday after refusing to sign a deportation form.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Dogmatic [dog·mat·ic] adj. 1. Expressing rigid opinions; Prone to expressing strongly held beliefs and opinions. 2. Asserting opinions in a doctrinaire or arrogant manner; opinionated.
· Rabbit-Obsessed Woman Hops Back to Jail After Hotel Find. An Oregon woman obsessed with bunnies has been ordered back behind bars after police found her in a hotel room with more than a dozen rabbits.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
· Los Angeles police under scrutiny in Jackson death. The investigation of Michael Jackson's death is widening as questions intensify about the drugs he took, the doctors who provided them and the actions of police. Why did they tow away a doctor's car right after the death but not declare the home a crime scene?
· Update: "Our stupid snake strangled the baby!" Charges will be brought against the owner of a pet python that strangled a 2-year-old Florida girl in her crib, killing her. "The baby's dead!" a sobbing caller from the house screamed to a 911 dispatcher in tapes released by police. "Our stupid snake got out in the middle of the night and strangled the baby!"
· Cops Taser Pastor 'Helping' Driver in Traffic Stop. Police used a Taser on a pastor and pepper spray to disperse his congregants Wednesday after the pastor allegedly interfered with a traffic stop in the church parking lot.
· The battered and bruised face of a 24-year-old burglar who got on the wrong side of a 72-year-old former boxer. Gregory McCalium, 24, was left with severe facial wounds after the knife-wielding thug attempted to rob his elderly neighbor near Oxford, England, Britain's SkyNews reported. The would-be burglar broke into the home of Frank Corti - without realizing the 72-year-old was a retired boxer.
· Congress's Travel Tab Swells. Spending by lawmakers on taxpayer-financed trips abroad has risen sharply in recent years, a Wall Street Journal analysis of travel records shows. The spending on overseas travel is up almost tenfold since 1995. The cost of so-called congressional delegations, known among lawmakers as "codels," has risen nearly 70% since 2005.
· US Airways Flight Diverted After Man Strips Mid-Flight. A US Airways flight to Los Angeles was diverted to Albuquerque after a passenger removed all of his clothing mid-flight, forcing flight attendants to cover him with a blanket before he was arrested, authorities said Wednesday.
· Air France plane went down 'almost vertically.' The Air France plane that crashed last month with 228 people aboard "did not break up or become destroyed in flight," the French air investigation agency announced today. "The plane went straight down, almost vertically," accident investigator Alain Bouillard told reporters.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
· Jackson death: Nuts starting to come out of the woodwork. In a petition in L.A. County Superior Court, Nona Paris Lola Ankhesenamun Jackson, who lives in London, claims all of Michael's children are hers and that she didn't authorize them to live with Katherine Jackson. She claims, "Though he died to this earth he lives with my father [Satan the Devil] Khalid Lucifer."
· David Carradine died of asphyxiation - pathologist. The medical examiner who oversaw a private autopsy on David Carradine said on Wednesday that the "Kung Fu" star died from asphyxiation and the way the actor's body was bound allowed him to rule out suicide.
· Pet Python Strangles Toddler. A man woke up Wednesday morning and found his girlfriend's 2-year-old daughter being strangled by his 12-foot pet Burmese python. Emergency workers could not revive the girl.
· Mississippi's still fattest but Alabama closing in. Mississippi's still king of cellulite, but an ominous tide is rolling toward the Medicare doctors in neighboring Alabama: obese baby boomers. It's time for the nation's annual obesity rankings and, outside of fairly lean Colorado, there's little good news. Obesity rates among adults rose in 23 states.
· Insomniac Jackson begged for drug. Michael Jackson was so distraught over persistent insomnia in recent months that he pleaded for a powerful sedative despite warnings it could be harmful, says a nutritionist who was working with the singer as he prepared his comeback bid.
· Arizona House rejects immigration enforcement bill. The Arizona House has defeated a bill that would have made it the only state in the nation to criminalize the presence of illegal immigrants by expanding its trespassing law.
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
· Pastor Allegedly Steals Millions From Church. A former pastor and his sons were charged with securities fraud in Indiana on Tuesday in what officials said was a multimillion-dollar scheme aimed at church members who thought they were helping build churches but were actually buying the men planes and sports cars.
· Franken declared Senate winner, Coleman concedes. Democrat Al Franken, a satirist turned politician, was declared the winner of a Senate seat in Minnesota on Tuesday, clearing the way for President Barack Obama's party to secure a critical 60-seat majority in the Senate.
· Child found alive in ocean after jumbo jet crash. A massive rescue effort was under way Tuesday after a young child was found among the wreckage of a downed Yemeni jet off the coast of Comoros in the Indian Ocean. 153 people were on the plane.
· First $1 million find for U.S. Antiques Roadshow. A woman who inherited some Chinese carved jade from her father has scored the first $1 million appraisal from experts on the U.S. television program "Antiques Roadshow," the producers said on Monday.
· Duke researcher allegedly offered adopted 5-year old son for sex. Sitting in a Durham County jail cell, Frank M. Lombard, the Duke University researcher accused of offering his adopted 5-year-old son for sex, awaits a trip to Washington, D.C., this week to face federal criminal charges.
· Obama EPA blocks its own report questioning 'climate change.' A top Republican senator has ordered an investigation into the Environmental Protection Agency's alleged suppression of a report that questioned the science behind global warming.
· Obama Vows to Be Gay 'Champion.' Countering criticism that he's done little on gay rights, President Obama commemorated the 40th anniversary of the birth of the modern movement by welcoming its leaders to the White House and reaffirming his commitment to their top priorities.
· New Miss Georgia Quits Day After Winning Crown. One day after winning the title Saturday night at the annual pageant in Columbus, Gwinnett County school teacher Kristina Higgins relinquished the post. Higgins said she stepped down because her responsibilities as a middle school teacher would not leave her time she would need to serve as Miss Georgia.
· Man charged for spraying wife with garden hose for smoking. A man was charged with domestic battery after he drenched his wife with a garden hose and attacked her for smoking in the house, according to a police report.
· Jackson ticket holders offered refund or souvenir ticket. Michael Jackson fans who purchased tickets for his final concerts will receive a full refund or, if they chose, a commemorative ticket, the concert promoter said Tuesday.
· Jackson's death returns his father to spotlight. At the BET Awards over the weekend, Michael Jackson's father, Joe Jackson, was back in front of the cameras. Wearing a black fedora and oversized sunglasses, he paid tribute to "a superstar" and promoted his own new record label. Joe Jackson has been accused of beating his kids - which Joe disputes - telling the BBC in 2003: "I whipped him with a switch and a belt. ... I never beat him.
· Jackson Left Father Out of His Will. A will drafted by Michael Jackson in 2002 which divides the singer's estate among his mother, three children and charities could play a central role in determining how his tangled financial relationships will be unwound.
· Battle to control Jackson's fortune begins. So, who gets Michael Jackson's riches? His mother took the first step Monday when she petitioned the Superior Court of California to be named the administrator of the late singer's estate. Katherine Jackson said in the filing she was acting to ensure Michael Jackson's three children are the beneficiaries.
· Jackson wrapped video before death. Two weeks before he died, Michael Jackson wrapped up work on an elaborate production dubbed the "Dome Project" that could be the final finished video piece overseen by the King of Pop.
· 10 others to be charged in Madoff probe. Federal authorities are pressing a probe of 10 associates of Bernard Madoff despite a sentence that means the mastermind of one of the biggest financial frauds in history will spend the rest of his days behind bars.
Monday, June 29, 2009
· $24 billion deficit forces California to issue IOUs. California is preparing to issue IOUs to its creditors this week as it grapples with an unprecedented cash crunch and prepares to begin its new fiscal year deep in the red.
· Bernard Madoff gets maximum 150 years in prison. Historic swindler Bernard Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison Monday for a fraud so extensive that the judge said he needed to send a symbolic message to potential imitators and to victims who demanded harsh punishment.
· Michael Jackson weighed 112 pounds at death, paper reports. The Sun of London report painted a tragic picture of a 50-year-old man so frail he weighed only 112 pounds and whose stomach contained no food - just semidigested pills. Several of Jackson's ribs were broken in the frantic attempt to pump life back into his heart. Jackson had lost most of his hair, and his haggard face was disfigured by 13 plastic surgeries, The Sun said.
· Court rules for white firefighters over promotions. The Supreme Court ruled Monday that white firefighters in New Haven, Conn., were unfairly denied promotions because of their race, reversing a decision that high court nominee Sonia Sotomayor endorsed as an appeals court judge.
· Woman Caught Robbing Worshippers in Church. Patricia Adams saw an opportunity during services at Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church – and it wasn't for worship. While a devout parishioner knelt down in prayer, the 46-year-old learned over a church pew and stole cash from her purse, police said.
· Arizona Moves to Allow Concealed Guns in Bars. A bill moving through the Arizona Legislature has some bar owners fearful that the state is turning back the clock to the Old West. Lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow anyone with a concealed-weapons permit to bring a handgun into bars and restaurants serving alcohol. [D]
· Gainesville Mayor Arrested After Found Nude at Campsite. Authorities arrested Mark Musselwhite and charged him with public indecency last weekend after state Department of Natural Resources officers found him sitting nude at his Rabun County campsite.
· Did Rough Plane Landing Cause Mays' Death? Family, friends and colleagues mourned Billy Mays, 50, who was found unresponsive in his Tampa home Sunday, and awaited an autopsy to determine the cause of his sudden death. Police said Mays told his wife he didn't feel well when he went to bed Saturday night. Earlier in the day, he said he was hit on the head when his airliner had a rough landing at Tampa Bay's airport.
· Nanny says Michael Jackson's stomach had to be pumped regularly. The shattered and suspicious family of Michael Jackson ordered a second autopsy on the late King of Pop Saturday as his children's longtime nanny revealed his frequent prescription drug binges forced her to pump his stomach "many times."
· Jackson was acquitted at trial but never recovered. Michael Jackson called his trial on child molestation claims, "the hardest thing I've ever done in my life." Acquitted of all charges by a jury but convicted by public opinion, he spent the rest of his life trying to recover from the ordeal.
· Famous pitchman Billy Mays has died. Television pitchman Billy Mays — who built his fame by appearing on commercials and infomercials promoting household products and gadgets — died Sunday. Police said there are no signs of forced entry to the residence and no foul play is suspected. He was 50.
· Jackson's Son Thought Pop King Was Joking When He Collapsed. Michael Jackson's eldest son thought his father was joking around when he collapsed on the living-room floor — but soon stood "in a trance" as the King of Pop's personal doctor frantically tried to revive him, a family confidant said.
· 'I'm better off dead. I'm done': Michael Jackson's fateful prediction just a week before his death. During the last weeks and months of his life, Michael Jackson made desperate attempts to prepare for the concert series scheduled for next month – a series that would have earned millions for the singer and his entourage, but which he could never have completed, not mentally, and not physically, according to reports.
· Airline policies juggle larger passengers. Frequent flier Ross Murphy, 54, has been sandwiched between larger fliers in coach, and he believes they should have to shell out for a second seat. "They have a right to sit in the seat next to me," said Murphy, who travels cross-country at least 15 times a year to watch his sons' sporting matches. "But they don't have a right to sit in my lap."
· Jackson's physician hires Houston law firm. A Houston lawyer says his firm has been hired by the doctor who reportedly was with Michael Jackson when the pop star was fatally stricken in his Los Angeles home.
· Sanford's wife: 'His career is not a concern of mine.' Jenny Sanford said Thursday that her husband Mark Sanford's political career is "not a concern of mine" and that she'd be just fine - regardless of whether their marriage survives. Jenny Sanford is an heir to the Skil tools fortune.
· Person close to Jacksons: Will, AEG role unclear. Most of Michael Jackson's family members have gathered in their Encino compound, where they are contemplating funeral arrangements and caring for his three children. They are feeling confused, upset and angry by the lack of information about those who were around the pop superstar in his final days, a person close to the family told The Associated Press.
· Bernard and Ruth Madoff have been stripped of their vast riches. The government announced Friday night that it had seized all of Bernard Madoff's property in a deal that also forces his wife to give up homes and property worth millions. Federal prosecutors obtained a $170 billion legal judgment against Madoff.
· The Most Dangerous Sport: Cheerleading. Cheerleading safety efforts have led to modest reductions in the number of serious injuries in recent years, according to a new report about college and high school sports and cheerleading mishaps. But cheerleading continues to cause more serious and deadly injuries by far than other sports.
· South Carolina first lady told him to stop affair. South Carolina first lady Jenny Sanford sat in her oceanfront living room Friday, recalling how her husband repeatedly asked permission to visit his lover in the months after she discovered his affair. "I said absolutely not. It's one thing to forgive adultery; it's another thing to condone it," Jenny Sanford told The Associated Press.
· Detroit councilwoman pleads guilty in bribery case. City Council member Monica Conyers, the wife of powerful and popular Democratic congressman John Conyers, pleaded guilty Friday to accepting cash bribes in exchange for supporting a sludge contract with a Houston company.
· House narrowly passes major energy-climate bill. In a triumph for President Barack Obama, the Democratic-controlled House narrowly passed sweeping legislation Friday that calls for the nation's first limits on pollution linked to global warming and aims to usher in a new era of cleaner, yet more costly energy. Energy production costs would increase $770 per household. Industry groups have cited other studies showing much higher costs to the economy and to individuals.
· Michael Jackson Rehearsed at Staples Center The Night Before His Death. Last night Michael Jackson had the “best show ever”—a rehearsal at Los Angeles’ Staples Center. Sources say he was thrilled about the show and very excited about his upcoming London shows.
· Quincy Jones: 'Part of my soul has died with Jacko.' Award-winning music producer Quincy Jones who collaborated with Jackson on three of his best-selling albums Thriller, Off the Wall and Bad, led tributes for the pop legend. He told MSNBC: 'I am absolutely devastated at this tragic and unexpected news.
· Jackson lived like king but died awash in debt. Michael Jackson the singer was also Michael Jackson the billion-dollar business. Yet after selling more than 61 million albums in the U.S. and having a decade-long attraction open at Disney theme parks, the "King of Pop" died Thursday at age 50 reportedly awash in about $400 million in debt, on the cusp of a final comeback after well over a decade of scandal.
· Report: 'Collapsed after an injection of potent Demerol.' An Emergency Room source at UCLA hospital said Jackson aides told medics he had collapsed after an injection of potent Demerol — similar to morphine. A Jacko source said: “Shortly after taking the Demerol he started to experience slow shallow breathing."
· Did addiction take Michael's life? His death may have stunned the world of music, but those who knew Michael Jackson say the warning signs of his fading health were clear. They claim his long-term addiction to painkillers is the obvious underlying health issue which – combined with the considerable pressure of attempting a showbusiness comeback - may just have claimed his life.
· Paramedics Worked To Resuscitate Star For More Than 40 Minutes. Jackson's personal physician tried to resuscitate him at his home, as did the paramedics, Jermaine Jackson said. Then at the hospital, doctors tried to revive him for more than an hour, but were unsuccessful.
· Michael Jackson autopsy expected Friday. An autopsy on entertainer Michael Jackson has been scheduled for Friday and results are expected by afternoon, according to the Los Angeles, California, coroner's office.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Esoteric [es·o·ter·ic] adj. 1. Difficult to understand; abstruse. 2. Not publicly disclosed; confidential. 3. Of rare, special, or unusual interest: Her software success was based on an esoteric programming language.
· Pop Legend Michael Jackson Dead at 50. Music icon Michael Jackson, whose fame spanned from his childhood with the legendary Jackson 5 to a superstar solo career that earned him the nickname 'King of Pop,' died Thursday afternoon at a Los Angeles hospital. Michael suffered a cardiac arrest earlier this afternoon at his Holmby Hills home and paramedics were unable to revive him. When paramedics arrived, Jackson had no pulse and they never got a pulse back. He was 50. [Developing]
· Key senator says $1 trillion health-care bill possible. A senior lawmaker trying to break the logjam on health care overhaul says his committee has come up with elements of a plan that would allow them to produce a bill under $1 trillion that would be fully paid for.
· Climate bill would be 'biggest tax in American history.' Britain's Taxpayer Alliance estimates the average family there is paying nearly $1,300 a year in green taxes for carbon-cutting programs in effect only a few years. Americans should know that those Members who vote for this climate bill are voting for what is likely to be the biggest tax in American history, according to the Wall Street Journal.
· Iowa Football Coach's Alleged Killer Led Cops on Chase Days Before. The man who allegedly gunned down a popular Iowa football coach, was to have gone to a hospital psychiatric ward after allegedly leading police on a high-speed chase Saturday - several days before the shooting.
· Farrah Fawcett Dead At 62. Farrah Fawcett, whose stunning looks and blinding smile made her a pop icon of the 1970s, has died. Her spokesman, Paul Bloch, says Fawcett died Thursday morning in a Santa Monica hospital. Her 2 1/2-year battle with cancer was depicted in the TV documentary "Farrah's Story."
· Court says strip search of Ariz. teenager illegal. The Supreme Court said Thursday school officials acted illegally when they strip-searched of an Arizona teenage girl looking for prescription-strength ibuprofen.
· Sanford e-mail to mistress: Situation 'hopelessly impossible' In one email message, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford said "I could digress and say that you have the ability to give magnificent gentle kisses, or that I love your tan lines or that I love the curve of your hips, the erotic beauty of you holding yourself (or two magnificent parts of yourself) in the faded glow of the night's light - but hey, that would be going into sexual details ..."
· Billy Bob Thornton's daughter indicted. The estranged daughter of actor Billy Bob Thornton has been indicted on several charges in the death of a 1-year-old girl she was baby sitting in central Florida.
· Woman Stabs Sleepwalking Boyfriend in the Face. Police said the man had a history of sleepwalking and ignored his girlfriend's repeated efforts to wake him up. He pushed her out of the way as he walked toward the kitchen, and she reportedly became scared that he might hit her.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Pugnacious [pug·na·cious] adj. 1. Quarrelsome or combative in nature; belligerent. 2. Expressing an argument or opinion very forcefully: Rather than maintaining a calm demeanor, his boss was quite pugnacious.
· Egypt confirms tycoon to hang for Lebanese diva murder. A Cairo court confirmed a death sentence against an Egyptian tycoon and an ex-cop hitman for the murder of a Lebanese pop star after the verdict was approved by the country's top cleric.
· Sanford Scandal Is Latest Blow to Republicans. South Carolina governor's infidelity admission adds to an ever-growing list of woes for the out-of-power Republican Party as it looks to rebound against President Obama and Democrats.
· Investigators eye problems with DC track circuit. Commuter rail tracks in the nation's capital are studded with devices that detect passing trains and tell them when to stop or slow down. But those devices on the stretch of track near where nine people were killed in a train crash didn't pass tests by investigators.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
· GLAAD asks Perez Hilton to apologize for anti-gay slurs against Will.i.am. Hilton, who is openly gay, said in interview with The Associated Press that he called will.i.am a "faggot," a gay slur, inside the club after the musician told the blogger not to write about his band on his Web site.
· Tennis legend Martina Navratilova sued for millions by 'wife' after being 'dumped without warning.' Tennis legend Martina Navratilova is being sued for millions of pounds by a former lover who claims she was dumped without warning after nearly eight years.
· San Francisco DA Defends Job Program That Trained Illegal Immigrants. San Francisco's district attorney is defending a city-led job program for first-time drug offenders that has included at least six illegal immigrants.
· Sanford: 'I have been unfaithful to my wife.' South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford admitted Wednesday that he has been engaged in an extramarital affair with an Argentinian woman. The news conference followed days of speculation surrounding his whereabouts. Sanford's staff had said the governor was hiking in the Appalachian Trail.
· Program Pays Girls $1 Per Day To Not Get Pregnant. A buck-a-day - that's the incentive being offered to young girls to keep them from getting pregnant. The group College-Bound Sisters was founded at the University of North Carolina by Hazel Brown, a maternity nurse who thought too many teens were having babies.
· Nine Nasty Online Scams You Need to Be Aware Of. Internet scams have been around for years, but the Federal Trade Commission’s recent crackdown on robocallers pushing car warrantees has put a spotlight on the thousands of tactics used by scammers to bilk Americans out of millions.
· Spector wants TV, music player for new prison cell. Phil Spector is hoping to get a few comforts of home in his new prison cell, and a television, iPod and computer access are at the top of his list.
· Oklahoma City woman trades sex for potato chips. A woman pleaded no contest last week to prostitution charges, accused of agreeing to be paid for services with a box of chips by a man who said he was a Frito-Lay employee.
· Missing South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford says he was in Argentina, not hiking trail. South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford popped up at the Hartsfield Airport in Atlanta Wednesday and sheepishly admitted he had been in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
· Owners torch own cars for insurance. More and more burned cars are turning up in tow yards these days. These are cars reported stolen from their owners, but law enforcement says it’s the owners themselves who are committing the crimes.
· Missing Ohio girl found with mom, sex offender. Haylee Donathan, the 4-year-old Ohio girl who vanished more than three weeks ago, was found alive Tuesday in the company of her mother and her boyfriend -- a fugitive sex offender, authorities said.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Incongruous [in·con·gru·ous] adj. 1. Lacking in harmony; incompatible. 2. Not in agreement, as with principles; inconsistent: a plan incongruous with reason. 3. Not in keeping with what is correct, proper, or logical; inappropriate: incongruous behavior.
· Man Fatally Shoots Himself at Florida Gun Range. Authorities say a man fatally shot himself after renting a gun at a Delray Beach shooting range. Authorities say they found a detailed suicide note with his belongings.
· Police: Man advertised pot sales on Craigslist. Drug dealers, take note: potheads aren’t the only ones who know what 420 means. Quincy police arrested a man advertising his wares on the online classified site Craigslist with the words “420 help is here.” Drug detectives knew that in the cannabis culture, 420 means getting high on marijuana.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
· Computer failure may have caused D.C. train crash. Investigators looking into the deadly crash of two Metro transit trains focused Tuesday on why a computerized system failed to halt an oncoming train, and why the train failed to stop even though the emergency brake was pressed.
· New York Times Bribed Taliban in Effort to Recover Abducted Reporter. The New York Times bribed Taliban guards through a private security company with CIA ties as part of its attempt to gain the freedom of one of its reporter and of two people taken hostage with him in Afghanistan, ABC News reports.
· Girl who said she woke up with 56 tattoos on her face admits lying. A Belgian girl who claimed 56 stars were tattooed on her face while she slept has admitted she lied and that she willingly asked for the design. Kimberley Vlaeminck said she "initially adored" the tattoos, but when her father reacted furiously she had decided to lie about it and blame the tattooist.
· 'You Light Up My Life' writer accused of NY rape. A New York City prosecutor says the Oscar-winning songwriter and director behind "You Light Up My Life" has been charged with rape and sexual assault.
· Work begins on world's deepest underground lab. Far below the Black Hills of South Dakota, crews are building the world's deepest underground science lab at a depth equivalent to more than six Empire State buildings — a place uniquely suited to scientists' quest for mysterious particles known as dark matter.
· 700 NYC teachers are paid to do nothing. Hundreds of New York City public school teachers accused of offenses ranging from insubordination to sexual misconduct are being paid their full salaries to sit around all day playing Scrabble, surfing the Internet or just staring at the wall, if that's what they want to do.
· NTSB: Crash train was recommended for phaseout. The subway train that plowed into another, causing a crash that killed seven and injured scores of others in the nation's capital, was part of an aging fleet that federal officials had sought to phase out due to safety concerns, an investigator said Tuesday.
· TV show helps Utah boy survive night solo in woods. When he realized he'd been separated from his family on a weekend hike in a northern Utah forest, 9-year-old Grayson Wynne's thoughts turned to television.
· Ryan O'Neal says he plans to marry Farrah Fawcett. Ryan O'Neal says he plans to marry Farrah Fawcett, who is struggling to overcome cancer. The 68-year-old actor says in an interview with Barbara Walters for ABC's "20/20" that he asked his longtime companion to marry him and "she's agreed." O'Neal says they will tie the knot "as soon as she can say yes."
Monday, June 22, 2009
· Brown agrees to plea deal in Rihanna assault case. R&B star Chris Brown accepted a plea deal Monday, avoiding jail time for beating up his ex-girlfriend Rihanna. Brown, 20, pleaded guilty in Los Angeles Superior Court to to one count of felony assault.
· Six die after two D.C. Metro trains collide. At least six people were killed Monday in a rush-hour collision between two Metro transit trains in northeast Washington. A number of other passengers were severely injured.
· People on terrorist watch list allowed to buy guns. When people on the government's terrorist watch list have tried to buy guns or explosives in recent years, the government has let them the vast majority of the time.
· Washington state congressman earmarks $250k in federal funds for his private club. A $250,000 request to fund a "window repair and limestone sill replacement" at The Rainier Club — one of Seattle's premier private clubs, whose members include some of the city's most well-heeled and politically connected residents.
· Bug Bomb Explosion Rocks Apartment Complex. Three Citrus Heights families are without a home after an explosion rocked their apartment complex apparently because one of the tenants was tired of cockroaches. Sacramento Metro Fire says they found evidence of up to 18 bug bombs.
· Pilot buries helicopter crash survivor in sand. A pilot dragged his passenger to safety and buried him neck-deep in sand to protect him from hypothermia Sunday night after their helicopter crashed in crocodile-infested mudflats in Australia's Northern Territory.
· Iacocca urges fast loan repayments. "They're on you day and night. Their oversight is just too extreme," said Lee Iacocca, who is promoting a new limited-edition customized Iacocca Ford Mustang. "That's why our 10-year loan, we paid it back in three years. We couldn't stand the government. The bureaucracy kills you."
· Study: Chubby people live longest. Health experts have long warned of the risk of obesity, but a new Japanese study warns that being very skinny is even more dangerous, and that slightly chubby people live longer.
· Vt. farmers cut cows' emissions by altering diets. Vermont dairy farmers Tim Maikshilo and Kristen Dellert, mindful of shrinking their carbon footprint, have changed their cows' diet to reduce the amount of gas the animals burp — dairy cows' contribution to global warming.
· Thief preys upon purses during mass. After a thief struck during Mass, the Shrine Church of Saint Bernadette is warning parishioners to take their bags when they leave their pews to accept Holy Communion.
· Montana City Drops Request That Government Workers Turn Over Web Passwords. A flood of criticism has prompted a Montana city to drop its request that government job applicants turn over their user names and passwords to Internet social networking and Web groups.
· Scientology's response to church defectors: 'Total lies.' The Church of Scientology pressed vigorously Friday to delay publication of the Times' Scientology story. Its lawyers said that the few days the newspaper gave the church to respond to Mike Rinder, who only recently agreed to go public, was not enough time.
· Florida Man Killed By Computerized Vehicle While Inspecting Tracks. The computerized vehicle, which is not driven by a conductor, was stopped, but moved forward for an unknown reason, killing a supervisor.
· Coroner Tells Jury That Kercher's Stab Wound Not Made by Knife With Knox DNA. A coroner told a jury Saturday that a stab wound to the neck of a British student slain in Italy was caused by a shorter knife than the one believed to be the murder weapon.
· House impeaches Texas judge accused of sex crimes. The House of Representatives voted Friday to impeach a federal judge convicted of obstruction of justice while in office. U.S. District Judge Samuel B. Kent of Texas pleaded guilty in February, admitting he lied to investigators about nonconsensual sexual contact with two employees in his courthouse.
· Steve Jobs Had Liver Transplant. Steve Jobs, who has been on medical leave from Apple Inc. since January to treat an undisclosed medical condition, received a liver transplant in Tennessee about two months ago, according to reports.
· Skateboarder takes a glide through White House. Professional skateboarder Tony Hawk on Friday took a brief ride at the White House as part of a Father's Day celebration. Hawk, 41, skated in the grand foyer and the nearby Old Executive Office Building, with the permission of White House officials.
· Boxer Balks at Apologizing for 'Ma'am' Dressdown. The controversy began when Brig. Gen. Michael Walsh was testifying during a hearing before Barbara Boxer's Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works and he called the California senator "ma'am." Boxer immediately interrupted him before he could answer one of her questions. "You know, do me a favor," a clearly agitated Boxer said. "Could you say 'senator' instead of 'ma'am?" "Yes, ma'am," Walsh replied. Walsh was following military protocol, which advises officers to use "sir" or "ma'am" when addressing anyone higher than them on the chain of command.
· Airlines add fees, and some fees on top of fees. As if charging $15 to check a bag weren't enough, two airlines are asking for $5 more this summer if you pay at the check-in counter — a fee on top of a fee. Of course, you could always pay your baggage fee from home. The airlines call it the "online discount."
· New Mexico breaks ground on commercial spaceport. New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson broke ground on Friday on construction of Spaceport America, the world's first facility built specifically for space-bound commercial customers and fee-paying passengers.
· Tax dollars at Work: $423,500 to Study Why Men Don't Like Condoms. The federal government is spending $423,500 to find out why men don't like to wear condoms, a project government watchdogs say is a nearly-half-a-million-dollar waste of taxpayer money.
· Aide: Husband of Ensign's ex-mistress sought cash. An aide to Sen. John Ensign says the husband of the Nevada senator's former mistress demanded "cash and other financial benefits" through an attorney. Ensign spokesman Tory Mazzola says the demands from a lawyer for Doug Hampton were made within the past month.
· Police officer accused of pulling gun at McDonald's. A Denver police officer has been suspended after allegedly brandishing his gun at a McDonald's restaurant in Aurora, Colorado after his order took too long to fill. The officer has been placed on administrative leave with pay.
· Woman Fined $80,000 Per Song in File-Sharing Retrial. A federal jury ruled Thursday that Jammie Thomas-Rasset willfully violated the copyrights on 24 songs, and awarded recording companies $1.92 million, or $80,000 per song.
· “Love Guru” Pirate Sentenced to Six Months in Prison. Jack Yates, 28, was sentenced to six months in prison today for making an unauthorized pre-release copy of “The Love Guru,” the Mike Myers comedy that Paramount Pictures released last summer.
· Texas billionaire Stanford arrested in U.S. Texas billionaire Allen Stanford was taken into custody Thursday night on a fraud-related charge in Stafford, Virginia, the FBI said. Stanford, who is accused of a $9.2 billion fraud by U.S. regulators, had complained that he had to fly commercial airlines after the federal government confiscated his six private jets. "They make you take your shoes off and everything," he said. "It's terrible."
· Consumers could get up to $4,500 toward new car. Car shoppers could take advantage of government incentives worth up to $4,500 this summer to send their old gas guzzler to the scrap heap in favor of a more fuel-efficient new vehicle. President Barack Obama is expected to sign into law the "cash for clunkers" program.
· Mom Accused of Burning Daughter in Voodoo Ritual. A New York City woman has been accused of burning her 6-year-old daughter during a voodoo ritual and then ignoring her cries for help and sending her to bed.
· NHL players sue developer over $25M Mexican golf resort deal. Nearly two dozen angry NHL players slammed a California developer with a lawsuit Thursday, charging he blew $25 million they'd invested in a Mexican golf resort on porn stars, private jets and parties.
· Woman cancels wedding after finding fiance was porn star. Haylie Hocking, 27, only found out that strapping 30-year-old fitness fanatic Jason Brake made adult films just weeks before the big day. A friend organizing her bachelorette party searched online for a male stripper and spotted Jason with a woman in a porn movie.
· DNA tests show Michigan man is not 1955 missing toddler. DNA test results reveal that a Michigan man is not a Long Island, New York, boy who went missing 54 years ago, according to the FBI. John Robert Barnes, of Kalkaska, Michigan, approached police in New York twice in March claiming to be Steven Damman, a toddler who vanished while on a shopping trip with his mother in 1955.
· The perks of marrying Google. When it comes to raising capital in the current economic environment, being married to a Google co-founder has its advantages. Regulatory forms filed Thursday showed the internet search giant recently invested another $2.6 million in biotech firm 23andMe, which was co-founded in 2006 by Anne Wojcicki - wife of Google co-founder Sergey Brin.
· Town Reels After Child Sex Charge Against Mom of 4. Allegations that a mother of four young kids in Maine Webcast the sexual assault of one of her children have rocked the small town in which she lives.
· Mafia blamed for $134bn fake Treasury bills. Few details have been revealed beyond a June 4 statement by the Italian finance police announcing the seizure of 249 US Treasury bills, each of $500m, and 10 “Kennedy” bonds, used as intergovernment payments, of $1bn each. The men were apparently tailed by the Italian authorities. The mystery deepened on Thursday when it was reported that the two men carrying the US Treasury bills had been released from custody.
· Dead pilot's wife: He was in 'perfect health.' The Continental Airlines pilot who died on a trans-Atlantic flight from Brussels to Newark was in "perfect health" and fellow crew members initially thought he had just fallen asleep, his wife told a Houston television station.
· House eyes new taxes as senators pare health bill. Early work on the ambitious health care overhaul the Obama administration is seeking has exposed the kinds of in-house fights that typify just how hard it will be to get meaningful legislation this year. Case in point: A proposal to help bankroll universal health coverage with a dime-a-can increase in the price of soft drinks.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
· Canseco Plans to Sue MLB, Union Over Steroids. Jose Canseco plans to file a class-action lawsuit against Major League Baseball and the players’ association, saying he’s been ostracized for going public with tales of steroids use in the sport.
· Ensign's Ex-Lover Suggests More Details to Emerge. Nevada Sen. John Ensign's ex-lover says she did "everything possible" to keep their affair private, but a spokesman for the Republican lawmaker refuted the claim Thursday, saying the woman's husband approached a major television news channel before Ensign's public confession.
· Continental pilot dies midflight, FAA says. A captain on a Continental Airlines flight died today while flying from Brussels, Belgium, to Newark, New Jersey, a Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman said. Two first officers are now in command of the Boeing 777, the FAA said.
· Ohio teen sentenced in parking lot noose attack. A central Ohio teenager accused of putting a noose around a Hispanic boy's neck and dragging him in a parking lot has been sentenced to 10 days in jail.
· Parolee spit in deputy's sandwich at Michigan McDonald's. Jacob Skipworth, who spent 14 years in prison for a violent home invasion, is facing criminal charges for allegedly spitting in an Egg McMuffin purchased by a cop at the McDonald's where the convicted felon worked.
· Gay critics say 'too little, too late' from Obama. President Obama's decision to grant some benefits to the same-sex partners of federal employees is seen by some as his attempt to extend an olive branch to the gay and lesbian community, but critics say it's "too little, too late."
· Ex-Major Leaguer Sentenced 45 Years for Raping Girl. Former major league outfielder Mel Hall was sentenced to 45 years in prison Wednesday after being convicted of raping a 12-year-old girl he coached on an elite basketball team.
· PETA wishes Obama hadn't swatted that fly. The group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wants the flyswatter in chief to try taking a more humane attitude the next time he's bedeviled by a fly in the White House.
· Former NFL QB Leaf arrested at US-Canada border. Former San Diego Chargers quarterback Ryan Leaf posted a $45,000 bond Wednesday in Washington state for drug and burglary charges out of Texas after being arrested by customs agents as he returned to the United States from Canada.
· Buoyed by Support, Mickelson Aims at US Open Win. When the U.S. Open begins Thursday, Tiger Woods will be the favorite - but Phil Mickelson will be favored by the people. Mickelson isn't planning to play the British Open, since his wife begins treatment for the recently diagnosed cancer July 1.
· 'All-American Car' Company to Build Factory in Louisiana. Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal has announced that San Diego-based V-Vehicle will create 1,400 new jobs and assemble an all-new vehicle in the state.
· Oregon woman obsessed with rabbits arrested again. Washington County's "Bunny Lady" is back in the hutch after violating a court order banning her from owning animals for five years. Miriam Sakewitz, 47, was arrested Tuesday at a hotel in the Portland suburb of Tigard after an employee reported finding rabbits hopping around in her room.
· Got $100? Welcome to your new Detroit home. If an e-mail popped up in your inbox promising a house for $100, you'd expect to see it sent from guy in Nigeria asking you to wire him several thousand dollars first. But this depressed housing market dream is real.
· Obama to provide benefits for govt workers' gay partners. President Barack Obama, whose gay and lesbian supporters have grown frustrated with his slow movement on their priorities, is extending benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
· Nearly 60% Won't Graduate At South Side Chicago School. A startling number of children are falling through the cracks at one Chicago Public School. More than half of the kids didn't even pass the eighth grade.
· Baby dies after falling into mop bucket at day care center. Police were investigating the death of a Queens baby who perished Monday when he fell headfirst into a mop bucket at his baby-sitter's house.
· NAACP demands apology for gorilla joke. The state NAACP is demanding an apology from a former South Carolina official whose Internet posting suggested a gorilla that escaped from the Columbia zoo was an ancestor of first lady Michelle Obama.
· Killing shows Mexico clergy no longer cloaked from cartels' aim. The killing last weekend of a Catholic priest and two seminary students in southwest Mexico marked the first time that drug cartel hit men have purposefully targeted a clergyman.
· School district's error delays summer break by 34 school days. A bureaucratic boondoggle in the San Bernardino County, California school district will cost the students their summer breaks. "We made an error on the minimum days of about five minutes," said Dickson Principal Sue Pederson. "Realistically, that's our accounting mistake as adults. We're unfortunately making the children pay for it by making them give up their summer." As a result, the district would have lost more than $7 million if classes end before July 31.
· Nevada Sen. John Ensign admits affair. Sen. John Ensign of Nevada admitted Tuesday to an extramarital affair with a woman who had worked for him. Ensign, 51, would not identify the woman but said she and her husband had been "close friends." Her husband, he said, also worked for him.
· Was Cheating Senator Blackmailed? An influential Republican senator went public Tuesday about an extramarital affair he had with a member of his campaign staff - a decision that sources say was prompted by a blackmail threat.
· Man hides in LA drain for 12 hours to avoid arrest. A burglary suspect who tried to evade police by hiding in a narrow storm drain under a busy freeway for 12 hours finally agreed to give himself up after speaking to a TV reporter on his cell phone.
· Obama: Fired IG 'Confused, Disoriented.' Responding to criticism from a Senate Democratic ally, President Obama explained why he fired the Inspector General of the AmeriCorps without the 30-day notification required by law, calling Gerald Walpin so "confused" and "disoriented" that there was reason to question "his capacity to serve."
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
· Teen Gets 23 Years for Killing Mom Over Video Game. A northeast Ohio teen who shot and killed his mother and wounded his minister father was sentenced Tuesday to 23 years in prison for crimes rooted in his obsession with video games with violent themes.
· Racist e-mail aimed at Obama raises hackles in Tennessee. The chairman of Tennessee's Democratic Party wants a Republican legislative aide fired for sending out a "reprehensible" e-mail depicting President Obama as two cartoonish white eyes peering from a black background. Sherri Goforth said she mistakenly sent the image "to the wrong list of people."
· Sen. Coburn questions 100 stimulus projects. Among the items on Sen. Tom Coburn's list: a $3.4 million Florida Department of Transportation project for an "eco-passage" - an underground wildlife road crossing for turtles, a $840,000 bridge repair project in Portage County, Wis., that carries 260 vehicles a day largely to a backwater saloon and a country club, and Montana's state-run liquor warehouse receiving $2.2 million in stimulus cash to install skylights.
· Ohioans ticketed for parking in own driveways. Residents of Toledo, Ohio are complaining that they received $25 tickets for parking their vehicles in their own driveways. During a news conference Monday, Mayor Carleton Finkbeiner ignored a reporter's question of whether the crackdown and fines were related to the city's budget crisis.
· Ex-congressman on trial over freezer cash, bribery. Opening statements are scheduled in the trial of a former Louisiana congressman charged with bribery after federal agents found $90,000 in cash in his freezer.
· Airline puts girl on wrong plane. Airlines sometimes send luggage to the wrong city, but in this case one airline sent a child to the wrong state. "The flight crew on the Cleveland flight was supposed to check that they had the right number of passengers, and they didn't do that," Kamens said. "The number of people who must have failed to do what they're supposed to do is mind boggling."
· Harry Potter publisher denies plagiarism claim. Bloomsbury Publishing Plc on Monday denied allegations that author J.K. Rowling copied "substantial parts" of a book by another children's author when she wrote "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire."
· Maine Mom Nabbed in International Child Porn Sting. A mother of four young children in Maine was charged Monday with gross sexual assault after British investigators more than 3,000 miles away used the Internet to allegedly catch her in the act of Webcasting a sexual assault of her young child.
· Letterman apologizes again for 'bad' Palin joke. David Letterman said his joke about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's daughter was a lousy joke, no matter how you cut it, and he's sorry. But the late-night host insisted that what's got people really riled is the misconception over which Palin daughter the joke was about.
· Sarah Palin accepts David Letterman's apology. Sarah Palin says she accepts David Letterman's apology for the joke about her daughter. The Alaska governor, in a statement issued Tuesday, said the apology was accepted "on behalf of all young women, like my daughters, who hope men who `joke' about public displays of sexual exploitation of girls will soon evolve."
· Obama's Air Force One flight to Chicago and back Monday to cost $236,000. As President Barack Obama flies Monday to Chicago for a midday speech on health-care reform, the round trip on Air Force One will run about $236,000. But that does not include such expenses as Secret Service protection, motorcades and helicopter transports. After landing at O'Hare International Airport, Obama is scheduled to spend about 2 1/2 hours.
· Attorney defends trooper in Okla. ambulance stop. Bothered that an ambulance driver failed to yield to him as he raced to provide backup on a call, state Trooper Daniel Martin decided to stop the ambulance and give the driver a piece of his mind. What Martin didn't know then, his lawyer said Monday, was that there was a patient in the back of the ambulance. "He's not this ogre, this depriver of people's rights," the trooper's attorney, Gary James, said. "He's a good man."
· French prosecutor seeks dissolution of Scientology. A French prosecutor on Monday recommended a Paris court should dissolve the Church of Scientology's French branch when it rules on charges of fraud against the organization.
Monday, June 15, 2009
· Oklahoma Highway Patrol finally releases video of trooper attack on paramedic. The Oklahoma Department of Public Safety has released video from a police dashboard camera of a scuffle between a paramedic and a state trooper after amateur video of the incident showed an officer grabbing the EMT by the neck.
· PETA pushes to halt Seattle fish mongers from tossing fish. Asserting that the practice of lobbing fish above the heads of patrons and tourists at the market and other venues is disrespectful to creatures that already have gone through a lot, an animal rights group is protesting. "Killing animals so you can toss their bodies around for amusement is just twisted," said Ashley Byrne, senior campaigner for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals in Washington, D.C.
· Drug suspect turns tables on NYPD with videotape. When undercover detectives busted Jose and Maximo Colon last year for selling cocaine at a seedy club in Queens, there was a glaring problem: The brothers hadn't done anything wrong. Since then, a vindicating video from the club's cameras has spared the brothers a possible prison term, resulted in two officers' arrest and become the basis for a multimillion-dollar lawsuit.
· Brother Pushes Sister Out of Fast-Moving Car After Argument. Baltimore County police say a Woodlawn man accused of pushing his sister out of a moving car onto the Baltimore beltway has been arrested.
· Fraud uncovered in restaurant seafood. The high-priced fish on your plate at a restaurant may be a low-priced substitute. In 23 out of 38 meals — too many cases to be by chance or innocent mistake — they found that the red snapper or grouper that they thought they were ordering was instead much cheaper catfish or tilapia. The worst offenders were sushi houses.
· GOP activist says escaped gorilla was "ancestor" of Michelle Obama. A state Republican activist has admitted to and apologized for calling a gorilla that escaped from the Riverbanks Zoo Friday an "ancestor" of First Lady Michelle Obama.
· Puppy rescued after being flushed down the toilet. The tiny cocker spaniel was trapped in a waste pipe for nearly four hours after four-year-old Daniel Blair decided he "needed a wash" and put him in the toilet.
· Car exceeding 100 mph kills 2 on motorcycles. A woman driving a car faster than 100 mph jumped railroad tracks in a North Carolina town and slammed into two motorcycles, killing the bikers and injuring a third rider, police said.
· Arizona Drunk Drivers Face Arrest at Fast Food Joints. The Pima County Sheriff's Department has a new campaign targeting drunken driving. Operation Would U Like Fries, or Operation WULF, will put undercover deputies inside 24-hour fast-food restaurants to spot impaired drivers placing their orders.
· Dog gets 'stoned' at park. A dog that ran off from its owner in Seattle's Seward Park found and ate some marijuana and got high. Owner Jen Nestor Waddell told KING-TV the 11-year-old black Lab mix named Jack was "just stoned" May 12 after they returned home from the park. The dog's eyes glossed over and he had trouble walking.
· At Least 25 Lakers Fans Arrested After Near-Riot. Hundreds celebrated in the streets outside Staples Center after the Los Angeles Lakers' NBA title win Sunday night, with some revelers damaging police cruisers, throwing rocks and bottles at officers and setting bonfires in the street, authorities said.
· Shooter's Son Wishes Dad Had Died. The son of James von Brunn said Sunday that his father, who is accused of killing a security guard at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, had long burdened his family with his white supremacist views and that he wishes his father would have died in the shooting instead.
· Tanker Truck Explodes Into Inferno on California Freeway. A tanker truck hauling 8,000 gallons of ethanol crashed on a highway, exploding into an inferno that sent a river of flame into storm drains, officials said. The driver was killed.
· $50M in stimulus will help fish farmers buy feed. The United States is about to spend $50 million in stimulus money on fish food to help fish farmers who have been struggling since feed prices jumped 50 percent last year.
· Miami Teen Accused of String of Gruesome Cat Deaths. A South Florida teenager was arrested early Sunday and accused of killing and mutilating the cats of his neighbors — a disturbing string of deaths that has horrified residents.
· Woman Who Lost File-Sharing Suit Gets Replay. The Minnesota woman who became the nation's only music file-sharing defendant so far to go to trial is getting a replay two years after losing the case.
· Fox's axed man blames Scientologists. Fox News bowed to pressure from Kelly Preston, Tom Cruise and other members of the Church of Scientology when it fired columnist Roger Friedman, the entertainment journo is expected to charge in a wrongful termination lawsuit this week.
· Prostitute Dies After Held in Scorching Outdoor Cell. A prostitute doing time behind bars, Marcia Powell was temporarily moved one day last month to an outdoor holding pen with nothing but a chain-link-fence roof to shield her from the searing 108-degree desert sun.
· Blogger Admits Story of Terminally Ill Baby Is a Lie. A blogger who wrote of deciding to give birth to a terminally ill baby, attracting a following of thousands of supporters online, admits now that the entire story was made up.
· Russian builds the largest privately owned yacht in the world. It is the biggest private yacht in existence and comes with a missile-detection system, two helipads, a luxury spa, swimming pool and a submarine. When you're Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, only the most ostentatious displays of wealth will do.
· US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive. Dozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic "shrink to survive" proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline.
· Obama fires inspector general who investigated crony. The inspector general fired by President Barack Obama said Friday he acted "with the highest integrity" in investigating AmeriCorps and other government-funded national service programs. Obama's move follows an investigation by inspector general Gerald Walpin finding misuse of federal grants by a nonprofit education group led by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who is an Obama supporter and former NBA basketball star.
· Inmate's behind-bars bar mitzvah rattles chain of N.Y. officials. New York officials want to know how a jail inmate threw a lavish bar mitzvah for his son inside a detention facility, complete with live music and catered kosher food.
· House Health-Care Proposal Adds $600 Billion in Taxes. Health-care overhaul legislation being drafted by House Democrats will include $600 billion in tax increases and $400 billion in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel said.
· Amanda Knox in Testimony Alleges Police Abuse, Admits Drug Use. Amanda Knox told an Italian court Friday that police abused her and called her as a "stupid liar" when they questioned her over the murder of Meredith Kercher. Upon being asked about turning cartwheels in the police station after the killing, Knox replied, "In general I'm someone who tends to act a little silly when I feel I'm in difficulty or not at ease."
· Suspect in California girl's death pleads not guilty. A woman accused of kidnapping, raping and murdering an 8-year-old Northern California girl - her daughter's playmate - pleaded not guilty at a Friday hearing, according to a court spokeswoman.
· New York Lawmaker Calls on CBS to Fire Letterman for Palin Comments. New York State Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, a Republican, is calling on the CEO of CBS to fire David Letterman for crude comments he made about Sarah Palin and her daughter.
· Stephen Baldwin's foreclosed home to be auctioned. Actor Stephen Baldwin's foreclosed home in the suburbs north of New York City will be publicly auctioned. Baldwin paid $515,000 for the 1.4-acre home in Rockland County in 1997.
· 'Foxy Knoxy': I was high when I spoke to police. American college student Amanda Knox took the stand today in an Italian courtroom, defending herself against charges that she took part in the killing of her roommate two years ago. She said she was under the influence of marijuana when she spoke to police and did not realize at the time that her police interview was on the record.
· NYC to gas 2,000 geese in bid to protect jets. New York City plans to trap and kill as many as 2,000 Canada geese this summer in an attempt to avoid the type of collision that caused an airliner to ditch in the Hudson River.
· Malawi approves Madonna's 2nd adoption. Madonna can adopt a second child from Malawi, the southern African country's highest court ruled Friday, overturning a lower court decision it said was out of touch with the times.
· Daily Show visits the New York Times. The Daily Show's segment on the decline of the New York Times reaches its peak when Jason Jones asks an editor to find a single thing in the paper that happened that day.
· Museum suspect: Obama 'created by Jews.' The 88-year-old white supremacist charged with killing a guard at the Holocaust Memorial Museum left a note proclaiming President Obama a tool of "Jew owners," according to court records released Thursday.
· Did Firefighters Stand a Chance Against Sotomayor? In a newly released video, Supreme Court nominee gives clues to the reasons that may have been behind her reasoning to vote against the Connecticut men who claimed reverse-discrimination.
· EU: browser-free Windows gives no real choice. European Union regulators said Friday that Microsoft was offering less choice, not more, by vowing to sell the next version of Windows without any Web browsers at all.
· Confusion expected as analog TV broadcasts end. Starting in the morning and going into the night, TV stations across the U.S. are cutting their analog signals Friday, ending a six-decade era for the technology and likely stranding more than 1 million unprepared homes without TV service.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
· IRS Weighs Rules for Taxing Private Use of Work Cellphones. The IRS is weighing a proposal to deem one-quarter of employees' use of work cellphones as personal use and therefore subject to tax as a fringe benefit.
· Chastity Bono changing gender, spokesman says. Chastity Bono, gay-rights activist and child of performer Cher and the late entertainer and politician Sonny Bono, is in the early stages of transitioning from a female to a male and will be known as Chaz, his spokesman said Thursday: "It is Chaz's hope that his choice to transition will open hearts and minds ... just as his 'coming out' did nearly 20 years ago."
· Slain guard opened door for suspect. The security guard killed at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum opened the door for the gunman, who raised a rifle and shot him, authorities said today. James von Brunn, an 88-year-old white supremacist, will be charged with murder.
· No smoking: Historic vote could bring new limits. The Senate struck a historic blow against smoking in America Thursday, voting overwhelmingly to give regulators new power to limit nicotine in the cigarettes that kill nearly a half-million people a year, to drastically curtail ads that glorify tobacco and to ban flavored products aimed at spreading the habit to young people.
· US government seeks to rein in executive pay. The Obama administration plans to seek legislation that would try to rein in compensation at publicly traded companies through shareholder votes and less management influence on pay decisions.
· Illinois Man Accused of Strangling Family Allegedly Spray-Painted Threats in House. A southwestern Illinois man accused of strangling his wife and two sons sent his family threatening e-mails from his laptop, and vulgar statements spray-painted throughout his house — including on the children's beds — matched his handwriting, according to testimony.
· Letterman: Jokester or Pervert? On Monday's "Late Show with David Letterman," the comedian came out saying, "One awkward moment for Sarah Palin at the Yankee game. During the seventh inning, her daughter was knocked up by Alex Rodriguez!" Palin's daughter, who attended the game, is 14 years old.
· Air France Jet Possibly Disintegrated in Mid-Air. New evidence suggest that Air France Flight 447 broke up over a number of minutes, rather than in one catastrophic incident, before plunging into the Atlantic Ocean and killing all 228 people aboard.
· Airline got replacement sensors days before crash. Air France received replacement airspeed sensors for its Airbus 330s three days before the fatal crash of Flight 447, but the airline's chief executive said Thursday that he is not convinced faulty monitors were the cause.
· California nears financial "meltdown" as revenues tumble. California's government risks a financial "meltdown" within 50 days in light of its weakening May revenues unless Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers quickly plug a $24.3 billion budget gap, the state's controller said on Wednesday.
· Police to probe missing gold at mint. Canadian police will investigate why the Royal Canadian Mint seems to have lost some of its gold and other precious metals, the government said on Tuesday. Media reports say more than $9.1 million in gold and other assets are missing.
· Prison mug shot reveals a different Phil Spector. California corrections officials released a startling new prison mug shot of Grammy-winning music legend Phil Spector, convicted last month of second-degree murder and serving 19 years to life in prison.
· Mentally Disabled Teen Gets 100 Years in Sex Case. Attorneys and advocates are questioning why an 18-year-old East Texan with profound mental disabilities was sentenced to 100 years in prison in a child sex abuse case.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
· Rev. Jeremiah Wright says "Jews" are keeping him from President Obama. The Rev. Jeremiah Wright says he does not feel any regrets over his severed relationship with President Barack Obama. Asked if he had spoken to the president, Wright said: "Them Jews aren't going to let him talk to me."
· Holocaust Museum killer is white supremacist. A lone gunman killed a security guard at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on Wednesday before being wounded himself by return fire from other guards. The suspect is James von Brunn, an 88-year-old white supremacist from Maryland.
· Michelle Obama: Fashion queen? Her taste for restrained elegance has earned her the title of First Lady of Fashion. But Michelle Obama clearly felt something rather more outlandish was in order for a sightseeing trip in London yesterday.
· Miss California USA Prejean dethroned. Carrie Prejean has been dethroned as Miss California USA for "contract violations." Prejean, 22, retained her title last month despite a controversy over topless photos, missed appearances and her statements against same-sex marriage.
· New GM Chairman: "I don't know anything about cars." Edward E. Whitacre Jr. built AT&T Inc. into the biggest U.S. provider of telephone service over a 43-year-career. By his own admission, he becomes chairman of General Motors Corp. knowing nothing about the auto industry. “I don’t know anything about cars,” Whitacre, 67, said yesterday.
· Woman mistakenly throws out $1 million mattress. An Israeli woman mistakenly threw out a mattress she said had almost $1 million inside, setting off a frantic search through tons of garbage at a number of landfill sites on Wednesday.
· Perv who confessed to molesting teens on quick path to freedom. A computer technician facing more than 50 years behind bars for molesting two Brooklyn teens could be free within a few months under a plea deal announced Tuesday.
· Man convicted of Craigslist rape found dead. A man facing nearly 30 years in prison for raping three women who had advertised in the "erotic services" section of Craigslist apparently committed suicide in his Kansas jail cell.
· Craigslist revenue to climb 23 pct to $100M. Launched as an e-mail list in 1995, Craigslist's revenue is on pace to rise 23 percent this year to reach $100 million for the first time, based on an analysis by classified advertising industry consultants Advanced Interactive Media Group.
· Passengers on Air France Jet Had Terror Links. Two passengers with names linked to Islamic terrorism were on board the Air France flight that crashed in the Atlantic Ocean, killing all 228 on board.
· Crank caller wreaks havoc on Arkansas hotel. A telephone prankster posing as a sprinkler company employee caused havoc Saturday morning at an Arkansas Holiday Inn when he convinced an employee to set off the hotel's fire alarm, smash windows, shut down electricity, and break a sprinkler head that flooded the building lobby.
· The Learjet repo man. Nick Popovich is a repo man, but not the kind that spirits away Hyundais from suburban driveways. Popovich is a super repo man, one of a handful of specialists who get the call when a bank wants back its Gulfstream II jet from, say, a small army of neo-Nazi freaks.
· 2 dead, 1 missing after Slim Jim plant explosion. Two people were found dead and a third person is still believed missing in a North Carolina food plant heavily damaged in a morning explosion, police said Tuesday night.
· Administration to issue new Wall Street pay curbs. Wall Street executives might want to hold off on buying that condo in Aspen. The Obama administration is ready to issue broad new guidelines that would rein in pay at financial institutions.
· Group says poker winnings are frozen. An advocacy group for online poker said Tuesday that the federal government has frozen more than $30 million in the accounts of payment processors that handle the winnings of thousands of online poker players.
· English getting its millionth word Wednesday? English contains more words than any other language on the planet and will add its millionth word early Wednesday, according to the Global Language Monitor, a Web site that uses a math formula to estimate how often words are created.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
· Jessica Alba Photographed Defacing Public Property in Oklahoma. Jessica Alba is now under criminal investigation after photographs hit the internet showing her defacing public property in Oklahoma. The worst part of it though, is that Jessica Alba ruined a United Way billboard, and is pictured celebrating in front of it like she has just won the Super Bowl.
· Girl, 10, arrested for fight with big sis. A 10-year-old girl was arrested and charged for fighting in a park with her 13-year-old sister, police in Texas said. The girl was charged with Class A misdemeanor assault. [D]
· Suspect claims 'victory' in closing of slain doctor's clinic. An anti-abortion activist suspected in the death of Kansas doctor George Tiller told CNN on Tuesday the closing of Tiller's women's clinic is "a victory for all the unborn children."
· Update: Woman cut open, baby taken. A once-pregnant 21-year-old newcomer to Oregon who was found dead in a crawl space of a home had been cut open and her baby taken from her womb, investigators said Monday.
· Justice Dept.: 1st Gitmo detainee arrives in US. U.S. authorities have brought the first Guantanamo Bay detainee to the United States, flying him into New York to face trial for bombing U.S. embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, the Justice Department said Tuesday.
· Biden Mistakenly Claims New Hudson River Tunnel Project Will Accomodate Cars. Vice President Biden, on a conference call Monday with reporters, claimed that the planned $8.7 billion Hudson River tunnel between New Jersey and Midtown Manhattan would provide a much-anticipated route for automobiles. Problem is, it's for trains.
· Woman Charged in Death of Son in New Mexico Park. A mother accused of suffocating her 3-year-old son and burying him in an Albuquerque playground was indicted Monday on murder and child abuse charges.
· Pizza Dispute Halts Senator's STD Lecture. Capitol Hill interns might miss out this summer on a famed lecture from Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn on the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases - all because of a dispute over who will pay for pizza.
· Apple drops entry iPhone to $99, unveils new model. Apple slashed the entry price for an iPhone in half and lowered some laptops by $300 Monday, the company's first dramatic price cuts since the recession began a year and a half ago.
· Veteran LA Police Detective Charged With Murder. A veteran detective was charged with murder Monday in the slaying of her ex-boyfriend's wife in 1986 — a crime that went unsolved for more than two decades as she rose through the Los Angeles Police Department ranks.
· NTSB to start hearings on plane's Hudson River landing. The National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday will launch three days of hearings into the circumstances surrounding the US Airways Flight 1549 emergency landing on New York's Hudson River. On Monday, the NTSB corrected remarks made by board member Robert Sumwalt, who was quoted by The Associated Press as saying Campbell was being called to contradict statements made by flight attendant Doreen Welsh, who has said a panicked passenger opened the rear door.
Monday, June 8, 2009
· Man accused in pitcher's death pleads not guilty. The man charged with murder in the deaths of three people, including Major League Baseball pitcher Nick Adenhart, pleaded not guilty Monday. Andrew Gallo, 22, was on probation before the April crash and his license had been suspended after a previous drunken-driving charge.
· Newspaper charges more than double for news online vs. home delivery. The 12,000-circulation Rhode Island newspaper is old school — it still publishes afternoons on Mondays through Fridays, with a morning edition on Saturday. Last month, the newspaper announced a new three-tier pricing structure for subscriptions. Want home delivery of the print paper? That’s $145 a year. Want home delivery and online access? That’s $245. And if you want just online access — to an electronic edition that duplicates the appearance of the print product — it’s a whopping $345.
· Court rejects challenge to 'don't ask, don't tell.' The Supreme Court on Monday turned down a challenge to the Pentagon policy forbidding gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military, granting an Obama administration request to maintain the Clinton-era "don't ask, don't tell" directive.
· 10 illegal immigrants killed in SUV rollover near Tucson. Ten illegal immigrants "stacked like wood" in the back of a sports utility vehicle crammed with at least 27 people were killed when the driver lost control and rolled over on a remote southern Arizona highway, authorities said Sunday.
· New Orleans mayor quarantined in China. The mayor of New Orleans, Louisiana, has been quarantined in China after possible exposure to the H1N1 virus, his office said Sunday. Mayor Ray Nagin traveled to China on an "economic development trip."
· California contemplates ultimate reform - no welfare. County welfare directors are "in shock" at the very idea of getting rid of CalWORKs, which has been widely viewed as one of the most successful social programs in the state's history, said Bruce Wagstaff, director of the Department of Human Assistance in Sacramento. That doomsday scenario is on the table as lawmakers wrestle with a staggering $24.3 billion budget deficit.
· Actor Efrem Zimbalist Jr. honored by FBI. Efrem Zimbalist Jr. finally got his badge. The actor who portrayed cool Inspector Lewis Erskine on the TV series "The F.B.I." was named an honorary special agent Monday - the FBI's highest civilian honor.
· Chrysler dealers scramble to dump vehicles. Liquidation signs fill the windshields of 788 Chrysler dealers who will lose their right to sell new cars on Tuesday, June 9, 2009, and need to sell the remaining cars and trucks on their lot or face getting stuck with them.
· Reporters get 12-year terms in N. Korea. Two U.S. journalists who were detained in North Korea while covering the plight of defectors living along the China-North Korea border have been sentenced to 12 years in labor prisons for the "grave crime they committed against the Korean nation and their illegal border crossing."
Sunday, June 7, 2009
· Mexican carnage hits Acapulco; 16 dead. It was a shootout straight from Hollywood: Masked and heavily armed Mexican soldiers battled outlaws holed up in a cliffside mansion in a four-hour shootout that had tourists cowering in hotels nearby. Roughly 3,000 shots flew, and 50 grenades exploded during the raucous gunbattle.
· Parents rammed cars into burning day care. Parents of the children trapped in a burning Mexican day care center rammed their vehicles into the building to try to free the trapped children, witnesses told CNN. At least 41 children died when flames engulfed the building on Friday.
· Conan has strong opening; tanks in subsequent shows. After debuting to record-setting numbers Monday, “The Tonight Show” audience has shrunk with each successive episode. While Conan O'Brien's debut was the highest-rated Monday episode in four years, last night was the lowest-rated Friday episode of "Tonight" in six months.
· Carradine family takes action on probe, photos. David Carradine's family members, dissatisfied with Thai investigators and "profoundly disturbed" by the publication of a forensics photo in a Bangkok tabloid, are seeking help from the FBI and an independent pathologist and have threatened legal action against any media outlet that reprints images of the actor in death.
· `Smart grid' — power lines move into digital age. Thomas Alva Edison, meet the Internet. More than a century after Edison invented a reliable light bulb, the nation's electricity distribution system, an aging spider web of power lines, is poised to move into the digital age.
· Supreme Court asked to block Chrysler sale to Fiat. Three Indiana state pension and construction funds want the Supreme Court to block Chrysler's sale to Fiat so they can pursue an appeal in hopes of getting a better deal.
Saturday, June 6, 2009
· 'Gay Days' Expected To Bring In $100 Million. The annual Gay Days event is expected to bring 150,000 people - and $100 million - into Orlando. The event caused a lot of controversy when it was first held in Orlando 19 years ago, but now organizers say Orlando's tourism industry is supporting it like never before.
· San Francisco bureaucrat scuffs dream of homeless shoe shiner. He sleeps under a bridge, washes in a public bathroom and was panhandling for booze money 11 months ago, and until last week, it looked like Larry Moore was going to have saved enough money to rent a room and get off the street for the first time in six years. But then, in a breathtakingly clueless move, an official for the Department of Public Works told Moore that he has to fork over the money he saved for his first month's rent to purchase a $491 sidewalk vendor permit.
· Patti Blagojevich Plays TV Mom to D-List Celebs. Once she was the first lady of Illinois. Now Patti Blagojevich is gagging down bugs and crawling through tropical slime in a race to be named Queen of the Jungle on a reality TV show.
· Health insurers want you to keep smoking, Harvard doctors say. Health and life insurance companies in the US and abroad have nearly $4.5 billion invested in tobacco stocks, according to Harvard doctors.
· Radio Ads Pulled Over Transgender 'Freaks' Remarks. Bank of America, Verizon, and other companies have pulled advertising from a Sacramento radio station after talk show hosts referred to transgender people as "freaks" with mental disorders.
· Airline did not replace instruments on 447. The agency investigating the crash of Flight 447 says Air France had not replaced instruments that measure air speed on the plane, which the manufacturer had recommended.
· Missing plane sent 24 error messages. Air France Flight 447 sent out 24 automated error messages - including one saying the aircraft's autopilot had disengaged - before it vanished with 228 people on board, aviation investigators said today.
· 'GoodFellas' actor charged with trying to extort money. Anthony Borgese - along with a reputed Gambino crime family soldier - was charged with trying to strong-arm cash from an unlucky soul who owed money to a loanshark.
· 'Hooker for Jesus' weds Christian rocker. She was a call girl working the streets of Sin City. He's a guitarist in a heavy metal band. They found commonality in their Christian faith and Friday evening, the two were married in a Las Vegas, Nevada, ceremony broadcast live via the Web.
· Down-on-Luck Rancher Wins $232M Powerball. A 23-year-old rancher whose family has fallen behind in their taxes and recently had a mobile home repossessed claimed a $232.1 million Powerball jackpot on Friday, one of the largest undivided jackpots in U.S. lottery history. He will take home $88.5 million in a lump sum payment after taxes are deducted.
Friday, June 5, 2009
· Ala. Man Pleads Guilty Wife's Scuba Diving Death. An American man pleaded guilty and was sentenced Friday for the manslaughter of his wife, who drowned during their honeymoon scuba diving trip in Australia. Her body was found on the ocean floor.
· Fired and behind bars, a teacher still gets paid. Former teacher Charlene Schmitz is behind bars in a federal detention center, serving 10 years for using texts and instant messages to seduce a 14-year-old student. Under the law in Alabama, she is still entitled to her $51,000-a-year salary while she appeals her firing.
· Dog Drags Owner To Tragic Train Death. A woman was struck and killed by a Capital Corridor train in Hayward, Calif. when the pit bull she was walking dragged her onto the tracks and into the path of the oncoming locomotive, according to authorities
· South Carolina Mom Charged With Concealing 555-Pound Son. A mother accused of neglecting her 555-pound, 14-year-old son's health has been brought back to South Carolina after she was arrested in Maryland.
· David Carradine's manager suspects foul play in actor's death. David Carradine's wife and his manager disputed suggestions that the actor's death was a suicide, while rescue workers and police in Bangkok, Thailand, said the actor's neck and genitals were found bound with rope.
· Carradine's "Deviant Sexual Behavior." As investigators try to determine how actor David Carradine wound up hanging naked and dead in a Bangkok hotel closet, his most recent ex-wife accused the actor of "deviant sexual behavior which was potentially deadly." Additionally, Marina Anderson alleged in a sworn declaration that Carradine engaged in an "incestuous relationship with a very close family member."
· EMT charged with posting photo of corpse on Facebook. A New York City emergency medical technician is facing misdemeanor charges after being accused of taking a picture of a female murder victim and then posting it to his Facebook page.
· Police Officers Placed on Paid Leave in Criminal Probe Involving Flushed Fetus. Five Mesa, Arizona police officers have been placed on paid leave pending the outcome of criminal and administrative investigations including an incident where an officer allegedly flushed a small fetus down a toilet.
· Tenn. lawmakers approve allowing guns in bars. Handguns will soon be allowed in bars and restaurants in Tennessee under a new law passed by state legislators who voted to override the governor's veto.
· US Airways Employee, Passenger Charged With Concealing Gun on Plane. The FBI charged a US Airways employee with helping his roommate get a concealed, semiautomatic handgun onto a plane departing Philadelphia early Thursday.
· FTC shuts allegedly rogue Internet provider. The federal government has severed the Internet connection of a company accused of helping criminals serve up a "witches' brew" of nasty content online, from computer viruses to child pornography.
Thursday, June 4, 2009
· Microsoft to move jobs overseas if Obama tax plan goes through. Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Officer Steven Ballmer said the world’s largest software company would move "lots of people" offshore if Congress enacts President Barack Obama’s plans to impose higher taxes on U.S. companies’ foreign profits.
· No Charges for Neighbors in Rape Suspect's Beating. A mob of furious neighbors of an 11-year-old girl raped on her way to school in Philadelphia won't be charged for beating a man wanted for questioning in the case.
· Fraud charge for Countrywide boss. The Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday filed securities fraud charges against former Countrywide Chief Executive Angelo Mozilo and two other former executives.
· Actor David Carradine found dead in Bangkok. Actor David Carradine, star of the 1970s TV series "Kung Fu" who also had a wide-ranging career in the movies, has been found dead in the Thai capital, Bangkok. A news report said he was found hanged in his hotel room and was believed to have committed suicide.
· Mother Charged With Feeding Her Child Feces. A Texas woman has been accused of repeatedly smearing human waste on her 3-year-old daughter's intravenous feeding line, potentially causing life-threatening infections.
· Judge Puts Leash on Media Hound Drew Peterson. A judge on Wednesday prohibited murder suspect Drew Peterson, a notorious media hound, from contacting anyone except people on a court-approved list of family, friends and attorneys - jailhouse restrictions in response to Peterson's recent phone call to a Chicago talk radio show.
· Buyer Pays $500 for Casey Anthony's High School Yearbook. An unnamed buyer has shelled out $500 for a copy of a high school yearbook that contains pictures of a central Florida woman accused of killing her daughter.
· New obesity surgery goes through mouth. Doctors are testing a new kind of obesity surgery without any cuts through the abdomen, snaking a tube as thick as a garden hose down the throat to snap staples into the stomach.
· Mom Accused of Duct-Taping Daughter's Boyfriend. Authorities arrested a woman for allegedly trying to kidnap her daughter's boyfriend and haul him away to Northern California. A sheriff's spokeswoman said Tuesday that two women went to the young man's home on Saturday afternoon and tried to tie him up with duct tape.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
· Man arranged wife's rape on Craigslist. A North Carolina man is accused of arranging to have his wife raped through personal ads on the Web site Craigslist, police said Wednesday. The 25-year-old man, of Kannapolis, North Carolina, was arrested in connection with the incident that occurred at his home early Sunday.
· Same-sex couples fight for immigration rights. Many are being forced to comply with federal immigration laws that don't allow Americans to sponsor their foreign-born same-sex partners for citizenship as a man may do for his wife or a woman for her husband.
· 17 year-old breaks into funeral home, beats woman’s corpse. Police allege 17-year-old Dominic Goodmoney broke into a funeral home, removed a female body from refrigeration and used a blunt object to hit the corpse's head and face several times.
· Gingrich backs off 'racist' label for Sotomayor. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Wednesday he shouldn't have called Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor a racist, when he called Sotomayor a reverse "racist," based on a 2001 speech in which she said she hoped the rulings of a "wise Latina" would be better than those of a white male.
· Crooks may use Twitter to find vacant homes to rob. Many people use Twitter to let friends know where we are but that may be a very public invitation for trouble. All it took was a tweet and 140 characters to let the world know that Israel Hyman and his family were in Kansas City, and more importantly, were not home.
· Storekeeper changes robber's mind, religion. A potential victim became a compassionate counselor during a recent robbery attempt, changing the would-be criminal's mind - and apparently his religion.
· Brazilian judge suspends order to reunite boy, American father. A Brazilian supreme court judge on Tuesday suspended a lower court's order that would have given custody of a 9-year-old boy to the U.S. Consulate in Rio de Janeiro, where he was to be reunited with his American father.
· Bin Laden threatens Americans in new tape. Osama bin Laden has threatened Americans in a new audio tape, saying President Barack Obama inflamed hatred toward the U.S. by ordering Pakistan to crack down on militants in Swat Valley and block Islamic law in the area.
· Coffee Shop Known For Topless Staff Destroyed By Fire. A three-alarm fire on Wednesday morning destroyed Vassalboro's Grand View Coffee Shop, a business well known for its waiters and waitresses who work topless.
· U.S. Releases Nuke Secrets by Mistake. A 266-page document that gives detailed information about civilian nuclear sites and programs, marked "highly confidential," was accidentally made public by the federal government, the New York Times reported.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
· Continental Pilot Reports Missile Flying Near His Plane Over Texas. A Continental Express pilot reported seeing a "missile or rocket" flying near his aircraft over Friday night over Texas, the Houston Chronicle reported.
· GM to sell Hummer to Chinese company. GM took a key step toward its downsizing on Tuesday, striking a tentative deal to sell its Hummer brand to a Chinese manufacturer, while also revealing that it has potential buyers for its Saturn and Saab brands.
· Body found in river IDed as missing philanthropist. Authorities in Missouri say the body of a 102-year-old builder and philanthropist has been found in a river more than two weeks after he reportedly jumped from a bridge.
· L.A. Mayor Dating Another TV Reporter. Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is dating a local television reporter - two years after having an affair with another newscaster that resulted in divorce from his wife, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.
· Pilots Saw 'Fire on Ocean' Where Jet Vanished. Pilots flying a commercial jet from Paris to Rio de Janeiro for Brazil's largest airline, TAM, spotted what they thought was fire in the Atlantic Ocean along the same flight path of an Air France jet that vanished Monday, the airline said.
· Man arrested for Facebook gun photo. A 20-year-old Wisconsin man was arrested after his ex-girlfriend reported a photo posted on Facebook that showed him holding a shotgun. His domestic abuse restraining order doesn't allow him to possess a firearm.
· Ford faces competition; bankruptcy gives rivals benefits. Ford Motor, the only one of Detroit's Big 3 automakers not in bankruptcy, now could be at a competitive disadvantage for taking the high road.
· The 12 Strangest Museums in the U.S. Museum of Bad Art: This Massachusetts museum has two galleries, with paintings devoted to portraiture such as "Peter the Kitty," landscape like "Two Trees in Love" and a dog in a hula skirt juggling bones.
· Bodies of 3 Brothers Found in Houston Lake. Investigators say three young brothers whose bodies were found in Lake Houston apparently drowned during a fishing trip. The three were 14, 16 and 21 years old.
Monday, June 1, 2009
· "OJ''s" memorabilia now with the LAPD. The footballs, jerseys and photographs that landed O.J. Simpson in prison have a new home at the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Sheriff's officials say they're waiting to hear from Simpson nemesis, Fred Goldman, before deciding what to do with the items. They could be auctioned to help settle a wrongful death judgment.
· Man Bets on His Life Expectancy, Wins $16,000. A 59-year-old man diagnosed with mesothelioma and given just months to live, placed a bet that he would outlive his doctor’s predictions and is now set to win $16,391.
· Abandoned Newborn Found Inside Box. A search is under way for the parents of a newborn who was found when a driver in Ocala spotted the infant's hand sticking out of a box that was left on the side of an isolated dirt road.
· Man charged in slaying of Kansas abortion doctor. A 51-year-old man was in a Kansas jail Monday, charged with first-degree murder in the killing of a physician whose women's clinic frequently took center stage in the debate over abortion, authorities said.
· Woman 'went too far in fighting rapists.' Police in central China say a woman went too far in defending herself against a sexual assault that led to the death of an assailant identified as a local official. Deng Yunjiao, 21, used "excessive force" when stabbing two officials, one of them lethally, after they tried to rape her.
· General Motors files for bankruptcy protection. General Motors filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday as part of the Obama administration's plan to shrink the automaker to a sustainable size and give a majority ownership stake to the federal government.
Sunday, May 31, 2009
· $24,000 "date night." Taxpayers footed the bill for president Obama's "date night," which included a total of at least $24,000 for the three aircraft used to ferry the Obamas, aides and reporters to New York and back. Dinner costs and orchestra seat tickets - at $96.50 apiece - were paid by the Obamas.
· Billy Bob Thornton's daughter charged in kid's death. The oldest daughter of Billy Bob Thornton faces charges in the death of a 1-year-old girl she was babysitting in October, a celebrity gossip Web site reported Sunday.
· Berlusconi Blocks Photos of Topless Girls at His House. Premier Silvio Berlusconi is fighting back in a scandal feeding on his fondness for young women, with his lawyer acknowledging Saturday the media mogul has moved to block publication of hundreds of photos taken of guests at his sumptuous Sardinian villa.
· Brothers Die While Trying to Save Puppy From House Fire. Firefighters tried to save two young boys who hid in a bathtub to escape the flames, but they just couldn't do it. Mario Angel Cisneros, 5, and David Alexander Cisneros, 4, died at Arrowhead Regional Hospital.
· Off on a technicality. Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon may have felt victorious when several of the criminal charges she faces were tossed out by Circuit Judge Dennis M. Sweeney. The ruling may reduce her legal exposure, but she is by no means vindicated.
· Mom in Abduction Hoax Case to Get Mental-Health Treatment. A Pennsylvania woman accused in an abduction hoax that ended in Florida and involved her 9-year-old daughter is staying with relatives following her release from a county prison, her lawyer said.
· Showdown in New York: Same-sex marriage. The New York Assembly approved same-sex marriages earlier this month, and the question now goes before the state Senate. Christine Quinn, the openly gay speaker of the New York City Council who has been lobbying for the measure's approval.
· Couple Thrown Off Motorcycle After Hitting Mattress. A man and woman were thrown from the motorcycle they were riding after it hit a mattress that flew off a pontoon trailer on a Grand Forks County road.
· Ohio man arrested for mowing unkempt grass at park. An Ohio man arrested for mowing unkempt grass at a public park said he just wanted to make his city look nice. John Hamilton said he took control of the situation because the grass in Sandusky's Central Park was about a foot high. According to a police report, a witness said Hamilton was blowing grass onto the sidewalk and shredding trash in the park that had not been picked up.
· Homeowners Association Asks Vet to Remove Bumper Stickers. Frank Larison is a disabled veteran with more than 14 years of service, including more than a year of combat duty in Vietnam. The 58-year-old former Marine now finds himself under attack by his Dallas homeowners association for displaying decals on his vehicle supporting the Marine Corps.
· Cemetery squirrels are nuts about U.S. flags. A squirrel - weighing about 3 pounds - got up on its hind legs, tore a small American flag from a small staff next to a grave stone, rolled it up and carried it up a tree to a waiting mate building a nest. It happened not just once, but about dozen times.
Saturday, May 30, 2009
· Bank robber arrested after boasting of crime on MySpace. According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice in Columbia, S.C., a man's message on his MySpace page helped authorities arrest him on bank robbery charges.
· Thief stage $8 million jewelry heist in Paris. Thieves in an upscale section of the city staged a brazen, daylight holdup, stealing around $8 million in jewelry from the prestigious Chopard store, police said.
· What They Get With Your Money. Florida Rep. Alcee Hastings spent $24,730 in taxpayer money last year to lease a 2008 luxury Lexus hybrid sedan. Ohio Rep. Michael Turner expensed a $1,435 digital camera. Eni Faleomavaega, the House delegate from American Samoa, bought two 46-inch Sony TVs.
· Staff's kids help Leno say goodbye to 'Tonight.' Jay Leno ended his 17-year reign as the host of "The Tonight Show" Friday with the children of people who met and started families while working at the long-running late-night show during his tenure, according to audience members who attended the taping.
· Newspaper Runs Ad Calling for Obama Assassination. A small-town Pennsylvania newspaper is apologizing for running a classified advertisement calling for the assassination of President Barack Obama. A note in Friday's paper says the newspaper "apologizes for the oversight."
· Oklahoma congressman checks into Betty Ford Center. U.S. Rep. John Sullivan, of Oklahoma, checked himself into the Betty Ford Center in California on Thursday night for treatment for alcohol addiction, according to a written statement from his office.
· Wikipedia Blocks Edits by Church of Scientology. After four months of internal discussion, Wikipedia's top administrators decided Thursday to block Scientology-affiliated computers from changing items on any part of the free online encyclopedia.
· Travolta 'struggling' five months after son's death. John Travolta is too distraught over the death of his son last January to help promote the movie he shot with Denzel Washington last summer, Washington said Friday.
Friday, May 29, 2009
· White House: Sotomayor says she chose word poorly. In a bit damage control, the White House on Friday said Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor acknowledges she chose her words poorly by saying in 2001 that a female Hispanic judge would often reach a "better" conclusion than a white male judge.
· Texan gets 45 years for spreading HIV through sex. A jury sentenced a suburban Dallas man to 45 years in prison Friday for knowingly infecting six women with the AIDS virus. Philippe Padieu, described by his own lawyer as a "modern-day Casanova," shook his head and looked down when the decision was read.
· 29 year old man fathers 21 children by 11 different women. Authorities are braced for more women coming forward to claim Desmond Hatchett is the father of their children after he appeared on TV. Many Knoxville residents called for him to be castrated.
· Defense contractor with ties to Murtha suspended. A Pennsylvania defense contractor who got millions of dollars in congressional earmarks from Rep. John Murtha has been blocked from doing business with the Navy amid allegations of fraud.
· Phil Spector gets 19 years to life for murder of actress. Music producer Phil Spector was sentenced Friday to the maximum sentence of 19 years to life for the murder six years ago of actress Lana Clarkson.
· Iacocca losing pension, car in Chrysler bankruptcy. Lee Iacocca, the car executive credited with saving Chrysler from bankruptcy in the 1980s, is to lose a big chunk of his pension and a guaranteed life-long company car due to the U.S. automaker's bankruptcy filing two decades later.
· Cops: Teacher, student had sex in class. A 27-year-old female school teacher has been charged with the statutory rape of a 14-year-old student. "The charges are very disturbing," said Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown.
· Swazi parliamentarian apologizes for HIV branding proposal. A Swaziland parliamentarian has apologized after calling for HIV-positive people to be branded on the buttocks to stop the spread of the virus ravaging the country.
· Lawmaker Pushes for Investigation into ACORN Finances. More than 250 nonprofit groups list ACORN's New Orleans headquarters as their address. Among them is Citizens Services Inc., a firm that was paid more than $800,000 by the Obama campaign for a get-out-the-vote program last year.
· Phil Spector faces sentencing in murder of actress. Phil Spector faces sentencing Friday on second-degree murder of actress Lana Clarkson, a conviction that suggests to some that California prosecutors have broken a decades-long string of celebrity murder case losses. The names O.J. Simpson and Robert Blake come to mind.
· Teen Solves 300-Year-Old Math Puzzle in 4 Months. An Iraqi-born 16-year-old who immigrated to Sweden six years ago, took only four months to find a formula that explains a sequence of calculations known as the Bernoulli numbers, a code that had stumped some of the best experts in the field.
· Woody Harrelson claims he mistook photographer for zombie. Woody Harrelson defended his clash with a photographer at a New York airport Wednesday night as a case of mistaken identity - he says he mistook the cameraman for a zombie.
· NYPD Cop Killed in Friendly Fire Shooting. Police say a New York City police officer who had just gotten off work was shot and killed by a fellow officer while chasing a suspect who had broken into his car.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
· Scientists identify new lethal virus in Africa. Scientists have identified a lethal new virus in Africa that causes bleeding like the dreaded Ebola virus. "This one is really, really aggressive" Dr. Ian Lipkin, a Columbia University epidemiologist, said of the virus.
· Maine post office refuses to deliver mail. The post office will no longer deliver mail on Ocean Avenue, said York Village Postmaster William Monagle, because to do so would require the driver to make a left-hand turn. "Left-hand turns and backing up, we try to avoid," Monagle said.
· Texan Woman Told to Remove 'Offensive' American Flag From Office. When Debbie McLucas arrived at work at a Texas hospital last Friday, she was stunned to be told that the Stars and Stripes she had hung in her office in advance of Memorial Day were offensive, and that the flag had been removed.
· Reporter dragged kicking, screaming near Air Force One. A reporter for a small newspaper was forcibly removed from a press area near Air Force One shortly before President Barack Obama arrived at Los Angeles International Airport to depart California early Thursday.
· Government will own 72.5% of 'New GM.' The U.S. Treasury will own 72.5 percent of the new GM coming out of a bankruptcy sale process while a trust affiliated with the United Auto Workers union would own 17.5 percent, GM said in a filing with securities regulators.
· Florida’s ‘pilot factory.’ A recent plane crash in Buffalo New York that killed some 50 people led to questions about the training of those in the cockpit. Those questions led CNN to The Gulfstream Training Academy in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
· Remains found in Illinois are not Stacy Peterson. The remains found last week on the bank of an Illinois river and near a blue barrel are not those of Stacy Peterson, Illinois state police said Wednesday.
· Brooklyn tattoo artist files $220M lawsuit against city over alleged sodomy attack by cop. A Brooklyn tattoo artist Thursday will sue the NYPD and city for $220 million claiming a city cop sodomized him with a baton, the man's lawyers said.
· Mom Charged With Faking Abduction. A Pennsylvania woman was arrested Wednesday after her story about being abducted with her daughter unraveled -- quickly turning from a mysterious missing persons case into a criminal investigation that ended in her capture at the Walt Disney World resort in Orlando.
· Pastor & wife cited for weekly home bible study by San Diego. A local pastor and his wife claim they were interrogated by a San Diego County official, who then threatened them with escalating fines if they continued to hold bible studies in their home.
· Retired NYPD cop gets life in prison in cold-blooded murder of ex-wife. The daughter of convicted murderer John Galtieri ripped her dad as a remorseless savage Wednesday before the ex-cop was sentenced to life in prison for the cold-blooded killing of his former wife.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Oxymoron [ox·y·mo·ron] n.pl. A phrase in which two words of contradictory meaning are used together for special effect, for example, “wise fool” or “to make haste slowly.”
· Calif. wants federal government to back its loans. In a move with only one modern-day precedent, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Democratic lawmakers are pressing the Obama administration and members of Congress for federal loan guarantees to help the state out of a desperate, multibillion-dollar jam.
· Sacramento's main psychiatric hospital closes. The steady increase of mentally ill residents combined with Sacramento County's budget woes forced the county's main psychiatric hospital late Friday to close its doors to new patients.
· Md. Girl Accused of Soliciting Dad's Killing on Bus. When Billy Lee Black was fatally stabbed in the alley behind their rented duplex on Halloween, it didn't take police long to question his 15-year-old daughter
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
· Drew Peterson Calls Radio Show From Jail, Suggests 'Win a Conjugal Visit With Drew' Contest. Drew Peterson has broadcast his trademark — and seemingly inappropriate — sense of humor live from jail. [D]
· Supreme Court nominee: "A wise Latina woman would reach a better conclusion than a white male." In 2001, Sonia Sotomayor gave a speech declaring that the ethnicity and sex of a judge “may and will make a difference in our judging.” “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life,” said Judge Sotomayor.
· Cancer Medication Causes Man's Fingerprints to Vanish. Patients undergoing a common treatment for cancer are being warned to carry medical documentation when traveling abroad because the drug can make their fingerprints disappear. [D]
· U.S. Sales Tax Gets Fresh Look. With budget deficits soaring and President Obama pushing a trillion-dollar-plus expansion of health coverage, some Washington policymakers are taking a fresh look at a money-making idea long considered politically taboo: a national sales tax.
· Tyson tragedy highlights hidden home dangers. Power cords are a source of manifold dangers. They can cause electrical burns, strangulation, tripping, and serious head trauma from appliances being pulled down by little hands or feet. Parents should unplug and secure power cords whenever possible, and move appliances out of the way.
· Americans' credit scores fall as they struggle to pay bills. From the third quarter of 2008 to the first quarter of 2009 — the latest data available — the average TransUnion credit score dropped 6 points to 651, the credit bureau says.
· Priest Ousted After Patient-Beating Video Surfaces. The Serbian priest running a church-backed drug rehab center was removed by his bishop Wednesday following the publication of videos showing him and members of his staff beating patients with a shovel.
· Gay Marriage Fight to Return to California Ballot. Within minutes of the Supreme Court's 6-1 ruling, gay leaders said they were moving into campaign mode with an eye toward trying to repeal Proposition 8 at the ballot box as early as next year.
· IRS tax revenue plunges 34%. Federal tax revenue plunged $138 billion, or 34%, in April vs. a year ago — the biggest April drop since 1981, a study released Tuesday by the American Institute for Economic Research says.
· Former NYPD commissioner Kerik indicted. Former New York police commissioner Bernard Kerik was indicted on charges of making false statements to White House officials vetting him for the secretary's seat at the Department of Homeland Security in 2004, federal prosecutors said Tuesday.
· Teacher Accused Of Having Sex With Teen Student. A teacher at a South Florida Catholic School is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old boy. Police say she admitted to the relationship, saying she and the student had been sexually active since March 2009.
· Accenture switches tax havens. Accenture, the outsourcing giant, is switching its accounting base from Bermuda to Ireland, amid growing policial hostility towards tax havens and tax avoidance. Ireland, which has long sought to attract technology firms with tax breaks, is expected to benefit from the US clampdown, along with Switzerland.
· Body of Abducted Crime Reporter Found in Mexico Ditch. The body of a veteran crime reporter was found in an irrigation ditch early Tuesday in the drug-plagued northern Mexican state of Durango, hours after he was kidnapped by gunmen.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
· Update: Tyson's daughter dies after accident. The 4-year-old daughter of boxing legend Mike Tyson died Tuesday, a day after she was injured in a treadmill accident at her home, police in Phoenix, Arizona, said.
· Radio Canada rapped for Obama assassination joke. Canada's public broadcaster was wrong to show a skit that joked about the possible assassination of President Barack Obama and suggested he could be a thief, an industry panel ruled.
· Jockey Suspended for Crash That Paralyzed Rider. Jockey Jamie Theriot was suspended for allegedly causing a violent collision at Arlington Park in Illinois that left fellow jockey Rene Douglas paralyzed from the waist down and Douglas' horse euthanized.
· Calif high court upholds gay marriage ban. The California Supreme Court has upheld a voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, but it also decided that the estimated 18,000 gay couples who tied the knot before the law took effect will stay wed.
· Arrested clown sorry kids saw bust. Patricia Ingalls is the clown who Wheeling Police arrested for drunken driving late Friday after they said she left the scene of an accident. Ingalls talked with NEWS9 Sunday and said that she's sorry that the children she went to entertain witnessed her get taken into custody.
· Tyson's daughter in critical condition after accident. The 4-year-old daughter of boxing legend Mike Tyson was in "extremely critical condition" after she was injured in a treadmill accident at her home in Phoenix, Arizona, police said.
· Scientologists in France go on trial for fraud. The Church of Scientology in France went on trial today on charges of organised fraud. Registered as a religion in the United States, with celebrity members such as actors Tom Cruise and John Travolta, Scientology enjoys no such legal protection in France and has faced repeated accusations of being a money-making cult.
· Minn. cancer patient back home, sees doctor. A 13-year-old cancer patient and his mother who spent nearly a week on the run to avoid chemotherapy must again place the boy's medical fate in the hands of a judge. And this time, an attorney said she believes they'll do what the court orders.
· Kidnapping Trial of 'Rockefeller' Set to Begin. An impostor who passed himself off as a Rockefeller in America for 15 years is to plead insanity when he goes on trial Tuesday, accused of snatching his London-based daughter.
Monday, May 25, 2009
· Divorcing Mel Gibson, girlfriend expecting baby. Mel Gibson shared some baby news on Jay Leno's final week as "Tonight" show host. Gibson's publicist Alan Nierob said the actor confirmed during the show's taping Monday that his girlfriend, 39-year-old Oksana Grigorieva, is pregnant.
· Girl skips school, crashes into cop car while texting. Tampa high school senior Katelyn Blaylock was busy texting while driving, according to police. Apparently too busy to see a car stopped at a red light in front of her: a Tampa police car.
· Google Street View blurs face of Colonel Sanders at every KFC. The world famous image of Sanders with white hair, beard, suit and glasses is on the front of all its 760 UK stores. But Google Street View has blurred the face on its unique internet service to 'protect his privacy.'
· Small explosive device goes off outside New York City Starbucks. A small improvised explosive device detonated outside an Upper East Side Starbucks early Monday morning, shattering the coffee shop's windows and raising fears of terrorism.
· Castroneves Wins Third Indy 500. Helio Castroneves joined a very exclusive club Sunday by winning at the Brickyard for the third time, matching his car number and capping what was essentially a perfect month for a driver who could've lost it all. This victory was especially poignant given what he was facing last month, a federal tax evasion trial that came with a possible six-year sentence and likely would have ended his racing career.
· Berlusconi Promises to Explain Relations With Teen. Premier Silvio Berlusconi has promised to further explain his relationship with an 18-year-old woman at the heart of a political and personal scandal.
· Billy Joel drummer files NY lawsuit over royalties. A former drummer for Billy Joel claims the Grammy Award-winning singer of hits including "Uptown Girl" and "Movin' Out" has stiffed him out of royalties for years.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
· Oregon mom accused in river drowning of 4-year-old. An Oregon mother was arrested Saturday in the drowning of her 4-year-old son after the boy and his 7-year-old sister ended up in the chilly Williamette River.
· Judge shields Craigslist from prosecution in South Carolina. A South Carolina judge has ordered the state attorney general's office to stop pursuing criminal charges against Craigslist.com while a lawsuit related to prostitution ads on the popular classifieds site makes its way through the courts.
· NYPD forensic investigator stabbed to death in bed. Michelle Lee's career was solving crimes. Working as a forensic investigator for the New York Police Department, she was training to do the type of "CSI" work made famous on television.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
· LA cop union buys stake in newspaper, demands critical writers be fired. The union representing Los Angeles police officers is pressuring the owner of San Diego’s main newspaper to change the paper’s editorial stance on labor issues or to fire its editorial writers after the pension fund of Los Angeles police officers and fire fighters invested $30 million from their pension fund.
· Passer-By Pushes Suicide Jumper Off Bridge. A man heavily in debt had been contemplating suicide on a bridge in southern China for hours when a passer-by came up, shook his hand — and pushed him off the ledge. [D]
Word of The Day by WordThink
Assiduous [as·sid·u·ous] adj. 1. Constant in application or attention; diligent: "An assiduous worker who strove for perfection." 2. Unceasing; persistent: "Assiduous cancer research."
· 'CSI' writer sued by couple over show's characters. A couple sued a writer for the CBS show "CSI," claiming two shady characters on the show were named after them in revenge for a real estate deal gone bad.
· Cops Nab Highway Gang Robbing Moving Trucks. On Friday Spanish police made a series of arrests in and around Madrid detaining 23 members of a gang who they say specialized in robbing moving trucks without the drivers noticing.
· South Korea ex-president commits suicide. Former South Korean President Roh Moo-Hyun committed suicide today by leaping to his death from a hill behind his house, the South Korean government announced. Roh, 62, left a suicide note for his family. "I am in debt to too many people," the note reads.
Friday, May 22, 2009
· Toddler buys earthmover in online auction. A New Zealand mom made some online bids on toys before napping. Then her 3-year-old daughter took over and bought a bigger plaything than expected — a huge earth-moving digger for a cool $12,300.
· Wash. Woman Dies Under New Assisted Suicide Law. A 66-year-old woman with terminal cancer has become the first person to die under Washington state's new assisted suicide law, an advocacy group said Friday.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Precarious [pre·car·i·ous] adj. 1. Dangerously lacking in security or stability: "The precarious life of an undercover cop." 2. Subject to chance or unknown conditions: "His kingdom was still precarious." 3. Based on uncertain, unwarranted, or unproved premises: "A precarious solution to a difficult problem."
· Sis finds long-lost brother living across the street. For years, Candace Eloph searched for her half-brother, who was given up for adoption in 1977. She found him - living across the street in Shreveport.
· Accidental Millionaires On the Run With $2.3M. The bank that mistakenly handed a New Zealand couple a $6.1 million credit limit said Friday it had recovered less than a third of the money from the pair, who have disappeared.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
· Actress Lucy Gordon found dead at age 28 in Paris. British actress Lucy Gordon, who appeared in "Spider-Man 3," was found dead in her Paris apartment after apparently committing suicide, French police said Thursday.
· Woman shoplifting at WalMart uses baby as weapon. Memphis police are searching for a shoplifting suspect who used a tiny baby as a weapon against a security guard during an escape attempt Wednesday.
· 1 in 4 Americans is texting while driving. In the United States, where driving while using telephones without hands-free adaptor kits and texting at the wheel are not widely illegal, one in four people confesses to texting and driving, a survey found Wednesday.
· Wife of Arizona Diamondbacks Pitcher Found Dead in Couple's Home. The wife of Arizona Diamondbacks relief pitcher Scott Schoeneweis has been found dead in their Arizona home, the Maricopa County Sheriff's office said.
· Autopsy scheduled for body found on shore. A cleanup crew discovered female human remains on the shore of the Des Plaines River on Wednesday afternoon, prompting speculation that Stacy Peterson or Lisa Stebic may have been found.
· Jesse Jackson Jr. Campaign Paid $247,500 to Wife. Representative Jesse Jackson Jr.’s congressional campaign organization has paid his wife at least $247,500 since 2001, including at least $95,000 after Sandra Jackson joined the Chicago City Council two years ago, according to federal election records.
· Catholic Church shamed by Irish abuse report. The thousands of victims of Ireland's child-abuse homes spent decades just trying to get the public to believe them. A mammoth investigation has proved the horrors of their youth, but left many disappointed that their abusers were not named. A nine-year probe into child abuse by Ireland's Catholic religious orders painted a damning portrait of a system that shielded child-molesters from justice. [D]
· GMAC to Get $7 Billion From Gov't, Surrender Control. The Treasury Department is preparing to announce as early as today that it will invest an additional $7.5 billion in GMAC LLC in a deal that could allow the U.S. government to hold a majority stake in the Detroit-based auto finance company.
· NYC police: Terror suspects wanted to commit jihad. Four men arrested after planting what they thought were explosives near two synagogues and plotting to shoot down a military plane were bent on carrying out a holy war against America, authorities said Thursday.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
· $14M Detroit house built on spec now on auction. When real estate in Detroit's Bloomfield Hills area was booming, building a stunning, 22,000 square-foot English country house on spec seemed like a great idea.
· Morgan Stanley Trader Suspended After ‘Trading Under the Influence.’ A trader who returned from a three-hour lunch involving alcohol and racked up big positions in oil futures, and then concealed the trades from employer Morgan Stanley, has the bank at the center of the second such scandal in the space of a week.
· Former Steelers running back Davenport's car stolen, totaled. Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najeh Davenport chased a suspected car thief who, police said, drove off in his 1970 Chevrolet Impala when he left it running outside his Carrick home yesterday.
· Doctor Saves Boy's Life Using 'Handyman' Drill for Brain Operation. A doctor in rural Australia used a handyman's power drill to bore a hole into the skull of a boy with a severe head injury, saving his life.
· Michael Vick leaves prison. Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick left a federal prison in Leavenworth, Kansas, early today, according to his publicist and the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Vick, who pleaded guilty to bankrolling a dogfighting operation, will serve the last two months of his 23-month sentence in home confinement.
· Man Demands Dentures During Alleged Stick Up. A Staten Island man is accused of ordering an associate to take out his dentures at gunpoint. Joseph Nativo, 47, claims he paid for his ex-colleague's fake teeth and now he wants them back.
· Arrest ordered for mom of boy, 13, resisting chemo. Authorities nationwide are on the lookout Wednesday for a mother and her 13-year-old cancer-stricken son who fled after refusing the chemotherapy that doctors say could save the boy's life.
Word of The Day by WordThink
feckless [feck·less] adj. 1. Careless and irresponsible. "The kids were feckless during spring break." 2. Lacking purpose or vitality; feeble or ineffective - unlikely to be successful. "It was a feckless attempt to make the company a success."
· Safety could suffer if mileage boosted by making cars smaller. The Obama administration's sweeping fuel-economy and emissions initiative announced Tuesday reopens a fierce debate over tradeoffs between fuel economy and auto safety.
· California Rejects Schwarzenegger’s Budget Measures. California voters rejected a package of budget-balancing measures that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said were needed to keep a $15 billion deficit from widening to $21 billion.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
· Bankruptcy plan eyes quick sale to the government. General Motors Corp's plan for a bankruptcy filing involves a quick sale of the company's healthy assets to a new company owned by the U.S. government, a source familiar with the situation said.
· San Francisco proposes cigarette butt tax. In what he casts as an attack on litterbugs and nicotine addiction alike, Mayor Gavin Newsom wants to impose a fee on an age-old inhabitant of city streets: the cigarette butt. The bill would add 33 cents to the cost of a pack of cigarettes.
· Automakers, Obama announce mileage, pollution plan. President Barack Obama wants drivers to go farther on a gallon of gas and cause less damage to the environment — and be willing to pick up the tab. Consumers should expect to pay an extra $1,300 per vehicle by the time the plan is complete.
· Aspiring school teachers fail in math. According to state education officials, nearly three-quarters of the people who took the Mass. elementary school teacher’s licensing exam this year failed the new math section.
· Government runs nation's only legal pot garden. Since 1968, the National Institute on Drug Abuse has contracted with the university lab to grow, harvest and process marijuana and to ship it to licensed facilities across the country for research. [D]
· Teen injured in beer keg explosion. A 15-year-old Sellersville boy was injured Monday afternoon when a beer keg placed into a fire exploded, officials said. The boy, who suffered a cut to his head, was taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital by helicopter.
· Astronauts Say Goodbye to Hubble for Good. After 19 eventful years, NASA is finally saying goodbye to the Hubble Space Telescope. NASA says the handyman mission not only fixed Hubble, but ensured it will last five to 10 more years and unlock even more mysteries of the cosmos.
Monday, May 18, 2009
· DNA shows 13-year-old boy did not father child. DNA tests have revealed that a 13-year-old British boy who claimed to have fathered a child with his 15-year-old girlfriend was not the dad. The results showed the father was a 15-year-old who lived in the same housing complex.
· Bill Clinton & The Fanny. Bill Clinton gave Fran Drescher a hand at the Life Ball charity event in Vienna this weekend. The former President likes to keep his fingers on the pulse of the important issues.
· Kids on board while Ohio couple got busy in car's front seat. An Ohio couple was arrested Friday after cops spotted them having sex in a car the mother's two small children were in the vehicle's back seat. According to a Springfield Police Department report, Danica Wallace, 24, was driving a Ford Taurus when she and Jeremy Welch, 29, "pulled off the roadway to have sex." Welch offered cops a simple explanation for the pair's conduct: "We got horny."
· Craigslist Chief Demands Apology. Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster demanded an apology from South Carolina attorney general Henry McMaster after McMaster announced plans to move forward with a lawsuit against the online classifieds Web site.
· Russia to Gays: Get Back Into the Closet. Being gay is not a supposed to be a crime in Russia. Homosexuality was decriminalized in 1993; six years later, the law that sent gays and lesbians to psychiatric wards was annulled. But Russia would still rather have its homosexual citizenry invisible - and silent.
· Bakersfield boy: 'Daddy ate my eyes.' Police believe a Bakersfield man bit the eyeball out of his son's face and ate it, according to court documents. The 4-year-old's other eye was damaged beyond repair, reports said.
· Banana used as gun in holdup, then eaten. Authorities in North Carolina say a store owner and a patron thwarted a teen accused of trying to carry out a robbery by concealing a banana beneath his shirt to resemble a gun.
· Police: Husband Beat Wife to Death With a Hammer. Homicide investigators in St. Louis say a woman killed in an argument with her husband was beaten to death with a hammer before her spouse fled and was later shot to death by police.
· Peterson Faces Arraignment in Wife's Murder. Former Illinois police officer Drew Peterson entered a not guilty plea at his arraignment Monday to first-degree murder charges in the 2004 slaying of his third wife Kathleen Savio.
· Obama's doing great - by copying me, Mayor Bloomberg tells mag. Mayor Bloomberg thinks President Obama did a great job during his first 100 days - largely because he followed a Bloomberg-like approach to governing.
· New York principal's death linked to flu virus. An assistant principal of a New York middle school who was hospitalized with the H1N1 virus, commonly known as swine flu, died Sunday from flu complications, hospital and state officials said.
· Court: Old maternity leave doesn't count. Women who took maternity leave before it became illegal to discriminate against pregnant women can't sue to get their leave time to count for their pensions, the Supreme Court ruled Monday.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
· Drew Peterson's Words Could Play Big Role in Trial. Drew Peterson might not take the stand if he goes to trial on charges alleging he killed his third wife, but his words could still play a big role as prosecutors try to put him away.
· Biden Reveals Location of Secret VP Bunker. The vice president, well-known for his verbal gaffes, confirms at a dinner the existence and location of a secret hidden bunker that Cheney is believed to have used after the 9/11 attacks. Biden told his dinnermates about the existence of a secret bunker under the old U.S. Naval Observatory, which is now the home of the vice president.
· U.S. Soldier in Pink Boxers Takes on the Taliban. Army Spec. Zachary Boyd, a 2007 graduate of Keller Central High School, was in his sleeping quarters this week when the Taliban attacked in the rugged mountains of eastern Afghanistan. Boyd rushed to a defensive position clad in his helmet, vest and boxers -- the pink ones decorated with the "I Love NY" slogan.
· Farrah Fawcett's jailed son, Redmond O'Neal, gets to say last goodbye. Actress Farrah Fawcett's incarcerated son was permitted to say a final goodbye to his dying mother. Redmond O'Neal, 24, visited the cancer-stricken screen icon on Friday.
· Girl Power: Filly Rachel Alexandra makes history. The best 3-year-old in the land just happens to be a filly named Rachel Alexandra. Jockey Calvin Borel all but guaranteed victory in the Preakness Stakes and, boy, did she deliver, becoming the first filly in 85 years to win the second leg of the Triple Crown.
· Staten Island demolition company owner gets city permits, despite $1 million-plus in fines. Marie Grasso has run up more than $1 million in fines by routinely violating building code safety rules, permitting conditions that injured workers and undermined the stability of adjacent properties. Yet the city continues to award her permits to knock down more buildings.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
· Georgia Police Shoot, Kill Man in K-Mart Bathroom. Georgia police shot an armed man inside a K-Mart bathroom in Marietta, Ga., Saturday in an indoor fiefight that left the assailant dead, authorities said.
· Suspect in pregnant Marine's death not father of unborn child. The Marine accused of killing Lance Cpl. Maria Lauterbach, who was more than eight months pregnant, was not the father of her unborn child, a law enforcement source close to the murder investigation said.
· Shooter to get diploma; victim won't. About 500 students will graduate this weekend from Atlanta's prestigious Morehouse College. One person who won't be there is Rashad Johnson, shot three times by a fellow student. But the shooter will receive his diploma -- part of a plea deal that spared him up to 20 years in prison.
· Attorney: Kick to Suspect's Head a Justified 'Distraction Blow.' An attorney for the El Monte, Calif., Police Officers Association said the kick to the head delivered by an officer to a car-chase suspect lying on the ground was a legally justified "distraction blow," the Los Angeles Times reported.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Synergism [syn·er·gism] n. Interaction of discrete agencies or conditions where the total effect is greater than the sum of the individual parts. "All the stockholders saw considerable synergism in the merger." [also Synergy].
· Attorney gets arrested at courthouse for possession of marijuana. Attorney Regina Criswell was arrested at the Bexar County Courthouse after deputies say they discovered two ounces of marijuana and a chrome-colored marijuana pipe in her bag.
· Airline industry changes raise safety issues. Revelations this week about pilot pay and working conditions at the regional airline involved in an air crash that killed 50 in upstate New York have raised broader concerns that long-term structural changes in the aviation industry may be undermining safety. NTSB investigators calculated co-pilot Rebecca Shaw was paid just over $16,000. Colgan officials testified that captains like Marvin Renslow earn about $55,000 a year.
Friday, May 15, 2009
· Obama revives tribunals for Gitmo detainees. President Barack Obama on Friday restarted a Bush-era military trial system for a small number of Guantanamo detainees, reviving a method of prosecution he once assailed as flawed but with new legal protections for terror suspects.
· Obama reverses stance on release of prison abuse photos. President Barack Obama has decided to withhold the release of photographs showing alleged abuses of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan, in order to protect the safety of U.S. troops, and for fear that the images could incite anti-American opinion.
· Man trying to light bong sparks garage fire. A blaze that destroyed a garage at a house near San Diego on Thursday evening was sparked by a young man who was trying to light a bong with a torch, authorities said.
· No one claims body of prof accused in slayings. The body of accused triple killer and University of Georgia professor George Zinkhan could be headed to a pauper's grave if the family doesn't claim his remains in the next day, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said today.
· Troy, Michigan's celebrated solar house left in dark. The $900,000 house was supposed to be a shining example of the green movement - a completely independent solar-powered house with no gas or electrical hookups. Frozen pipes during the winter caused $16,000 in damage to floors, and city officials aren't sure when the house at the Troy Community Center will be able to open.
· Yellowstone Workers Fired for Urinating in Old Faithful. Two seasonal Yellowstone National Park concession workers have been fired after a live webcam caught them urinating into the Old Faithful geyser. [D]
· 4 US citizens found strangled in Tijuana. The bodies of four U.S. citizens were found strangled, beaten and stabbed in a van in this border city, two days after they reportedly left their Southern California homes for a night at the Mexican clubs, U.S. officials said Thursday.
· Legal fight brews over 'Farrah's Story.' While cancer keeps Farrah in her bed, a legal fight has begun over the documentary. Producer Craig Nevius filed a lawsuit against O'Neal and Alana Stewart, claiming they stole creative control of the film.
· Felon stalked woman on Web before stabbing her in public An ex-con was charged Thursday with the fatal-attraction stabbing of a Bronx woman he wooed on the Internet and ambushed on a park bench - after the dying victim whispered his name to cops, police said.
· Pelosi Acknowledges She Was Told of Waterboarding in 2003. Under fire from Republicans for what she knew about harsh questioning of terror detainees, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday acknowledged that she had learned in 2003 that the C.I.A. had subjected suspects to waterboarding, but she asserted that the agency had misled Congress about its techniques.
· Cyberbullying Bill Could Ensnare Free Speech Rights. A bill introduced in the House of Representatives last month by Rep. Linda Sanchez, D-Calif., is designed to prevent cyberbullying, making it punishable by a fine and up to two years in prison. A TV host like MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, who's been openly and repeatedly hostile to former Vice President Dick Cheney on his Web site, would not be safe from prosecution, the analysts say.
· Scientists May Have Found How Life Began. British scientists said on Wednesday that they had figured out key steps in the process by which life on Earth may have emerged from a seething soup of simple chemicals.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
· Crew of crashed plane being used as 'scapegoats,' mom says. The mother of the co-pilot who died in a plane crash near Buffalo, New York, in February, said Thursday that her daughter and the pilot were "being used as a scapegoat."
· House OKs $6.4 billion to make schools greener. The House on Thursday passed a $6.4 billion school modernization bill that would commit funds for the construction and update of more energy-efficient school buildings.
· The World's Best Illusion: The Secret of the Curve Ball. The three best visual illusions in the world were chosen at a gathering last weekend of neuroscientists and psychologists at the Naples Philharmonic Center for the Arts in Florida.
· Roadkill cook-off. Thousands of people converge on the small town of Marlinton, West Virginia, each fall for a feast whose main ingredients were unlucky enough to crawl, slither or lurk too close to a speeding car.
· Free Viagra, other drugs for jobless. Pfizer is unveiling a new program that will let people who have lost their jobs and health insurance keep taking some widely prescribed Pfizer medications - including Lipitor and Viagra - for free for up to a year.
· Billionaire's Boat Stuffed With Exotic Animals Seized. Lions and tigers and bears and just about any other exotic animal you can think of were found on a mega yacht in Miami and caused quite an expensive problem for one of the wealthiest men in America.
· Officer Allegedly Kicks Suspect in Head After Chase. Police in El Monte, Calif., are conducting an internal investigation after TV cameras caught an officer apparently kick a suspect in the head following a high-speed car chase Wednesday afternoon.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Innocuous [in·noc·u·ous] adj. 1. Having no adverse effect; harmless. 2. Not likely to offend or provoke to strong emotion; insipid. [the seemingly innocuous e-mail actually contained a malicious virus].
· 1-800-Mattress Founder's Wife Slain; Son Charged. The wife of 1-800-Mattress founder Napoleon Barragan was found dead Wednesday in their New York home, and her son reportedly has been charged with her murder. The son had "a history of mental incapacity."
· Chinese imports could bring GM political troubles. As thousands of General Motors workers await word on more U.S. plant closures, reports that the company plans to import Chinese-made vehicles to the U.S. have created a political problem for the automaker and the White House.
· Surgeon allegedly operates on wrong part of mouth. Officials at a Providence hospital group said an oral surgeon began operating on the wrong part of a patient's mouth this week before discovering the error. It's the fifth wrong-site surgery in the last two years in the Lifespan hospital chain.
· Police Catch Missing Ohio Teen Said to Have School Hit List. A 13-year-old boy from Ohio, who authorities say kept a diary hit list and threatened several faculty members and students at his school, was caught Wednesday night in Dayton, Tenn.
· FCC: Landline number move should take 1 day, not 4. The Federal Communications Commission voted Wednesday to force landline phone companies to act faster when their subscribers want to move their phone number to a rival service.
· Dancer paralyzed in fall, dashing Olympic dreams. Liu Yan, regarded as China's top classical dancer, was to give the performance of a lifetime: She was to dance a solo at the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
· Providence mayor wants to tax college students. The mayor of Providence wants to slap a $150-per-semester tax on the 25,000 full-time students at Brown University and three other private colleges in the city.
· Craigslist to replace 'Internet brothel.' Craigslist will replace its controversial online "erotic services" listings with a section where ads are individually checked by Craigslist employees before they are posted, according to Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal.
· Conn. chimp that mauled woman had Xanax in system. A Connecticut prosecutor says test results show a chimpanzee that mauled a woman had the anti-anxiety drug Xanax in its system. The 200-pound chimp, named Travis, attacked Stamford resident Charla Nash on Feb. 16. Nash lost her hands, nose, lips and eyelids in the attack.
· Couple Lucky to Be Alive After Eating Deadly Fish Given to Them as 'Gift.' Days after falling into near-fatal comas, an Israeli couple is lucky to be alive after they ate a deadly strain of fish. The 47-year-olds, immigrants from Russia and Ukraine, were admitted to a hospital in northern Israel on Saturday in comatose states after preparing and eating fried blowfish.
· Rotten office fridge cleanup sends 7 to hospital. An office worker cleaning a fridge full of rotten food created a smell so noxious that it sent seven co-workers to the hospital and made many others ill. Firefighters had to evacuate the AT&T building in downtown San Jose on Tuesday, after the flagrant fumes prompted someone to call 911, and a hazmat team was called in.
· Chicago Family's 'Buy Black' Experiment Becoming a Nationwide Movement. Maggie and John Anderson of Chicago vowed four months ago that for one year, they would try to patronize only black-owned businesses. Now, the Andersons are following up with 4,000 people who signed up for the experiment on their Web site to gauge their commitment.
· License of Pilot Taped in In-Flight Sex Act Revoked. A helicopter pilot who was videotaped receiving oral sex from a woman as he flew her around San Diego acted so recklessly that his license must be revoked, the NTSB said.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Autonomous [au·ton·o·mous] adj. 1. Independent in mind or judgment; self-directed. 2. Not controlled by others or by outside forces; independent: "an autonomous judiciary."
· Report: Billions of Dollars Pulled From Bernard Madoff's Accounts Before Arrest. About $12 billion was withdrawn from the accounts of his firm in 2008, and another $6 billion was taken out just three months before the disgraced financier was charged with orchestrating a global multibillion-dollar swindle scheme, the documents show.
· Man who spent 22 years on death row is cleared. A former death row inmate in Tennessee has been cleared of murder, three years after the Supreme Court raised repeated questions about his conviction.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
· Trump: Miss California's view is same as President's. At a press conference addressing Carrie Prejean’s disputed title in the Miss USA competition, pageant owner Donald Trump compared Prejean’s stated views on gay marriage to Obama’s. “It's the same answer that the president of the United States gave,” Trump said.
· $800,000 Stimulus Funds Approved for Murtha Airport. The Federal Aviation Administration, after reviewing concerns about a project at a regional airport named after Rep. John P. Murtha (D-Pa.), has decided to go forward with plans to use $800,000 in stimulus funds to repave the airport's alternate runway.
· Report: Boston Trolley Driver Was Hired With Transgender Minority Status. The 24-year-old Boston trolley driver who allegedly was texting his girlfriend when he slammed into another trolley last week was hired as a minority because of his transgender status, according to a state transportation official.
· Screams recorded in cockpit of crashing plane. The pilot of a doomed plane that crashed, killing 50 people, said "Jesus Christ" and "We're down," seconds before the plane hurtled from the night sky into a house outside Buffalo, New York, in February.
· Police: Prof dug grave, shot himself in head. A University of Georgia professor sought in the deaths of his wife and two others shot himself to death after digging his own grave and covering it with brush, police said today.
· Baggage container sucked into Boeing 747 engine at LA airport. A large metal baggage container was sucked into an engine of a Boeing 747 as it was leaving a terminal gate at Los Angeles International Airport, aviation authorities said.
· Tornado Victim Saw Husband Sucked Into Storm. An Alleghany County woman injured when a tornado tore apart her home Friday evening said her last memory was seeing her husband sucked into the storm's wind.
· Postal service: Worker stole $20,000 in stamps for mortgage. Postal authorities say a Michigan postal worker has admitted to stealing some $20,000 worth of first-class stamps since September and trying to sell them to online auction-site customers to help pay his mortgage.
· Michael Landon's oldest son found dead. The son of actor Michael Landon was found dead in his West Hollywood, California, home Monday afternoon, according to investigators. There was "no indication of foul play" in the death of Mark Landon, 60.
· GM May Leave Motor City, CEO Says. General Motors Corp. CEO Fritz Henderson left open the possibility that GM would move its corporate headquarters out of Detroit. The company, he said, is looking at everything within its business.
Monday, May 11, 2009
· Priest in compromising photos admits two-year affair. An internationally known Catholic priest who was shown in photographs last week embracing a bathing-suit-clad woman on a Florida beach has admitted they had a two-year affair.
· Federal judge in sex case gets nearly 3 years. A disgraced federal judge was sentenced Monday to nearly three years in prison for lying to investigators about whether he sexually abused his secretary.
· Women Switched at Birth Find Out 56 Years Later. Two baby girls switched at birth 56 years ago have finally found out about the mistake. DeeAnn Angell of Fossil and Kay Rene Reed of Condon learned about the mistake from an 86-year-old woman who was a former neighbor.
· White House: Budget deficit to top $1.8 trillion. With the economy performing worse than hoped, revised White House figures point to deepening budget deficits, with the government borrowing almost 50 cents for every dollar it spends this year.
· Man accidently kills wife with chainsaw. A woman was killed by her husband in a chainsaw accident Sunday afternoon. The couple, in their 40s, were working together in their yard, trying to cut down a tree, when the woman was hit in the neck with the chainsaw her husband was operating.
· John Edwards 'Doomsday' Plan. Members of former Sen. John Edwards' presidential campaign reportedly devised a "doomsday" strategy over his affair with Rielle Hunter in which they would destroy his bid for office.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Eclectic [e·clec·tic] adj. 1. Composed of elements drawn from various sources 2. Not following any one system, but selecting and using what are considered the best elements of all systems. "An eclectic taste in music; an eclectic approach to managing the business.
· CBS Sports Analyst Sorry for Pelosi Shooting Joke. CBS Sports golf analyst David Feherty apologized Sunday for writing: "Despite how the conflict has been portrayed by our glorious media, if you gave any U.S. soldier a gun with two bullets in it, and he found himself in an elevator with Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Osama bin Laden, there's a good chance that Nancy Pelosi would get shot twice, and Harry Reid and bin Laden would be strangled to death."
· Captain's Training Faulted in Buffalo Plane Crash. The captain of a commuter plane that crashed Feb. 12 near Buffalo, N.Y., had flunked numerous flight tests during his career and was never adequately taught how to respond to the emergency that led to the airplane's fatal descent, according to people close to the investigation.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
· Operator of Crashed Boston Subway was Texting Girlfriend, more than 40 People Injured. The crash happened in a tunnel between Government Center and Park Street stations, sending more than 40 people to area hospitals with cuts, head wounds, and neck and back injuries.
· Boy Mistaken for Intruder Dies From Gunshot Wound. A 7-year-old boy who was allegedly shot in the head by a couple who thought he and three other people were trespassing on their property died Saturday, authorities said. A sign in front of the suspects' home reads: "Trespassers will be shot. Survivers will be reshot!! Smile I will."
· Busted for speeding, Vermont trooper has police "support." Vermont's top law enforcement officer today said the on-duty state trooper fined for driving 133 mph on Interstate 91 has his "full support."
· NASCAR Driver Jeremy Mayfield Fails Drug Test. Jeremy Mayfield was suspended indefinitely by NASCAR on Saturday for failing a random drug test, becoming the first driver to violate a toughened new policy that went into effect this season.
Saturday, May 9, 2009
· Hackers broke into FAA air traffic control systems. Hackers have broken into the air traffic control mission-support systems of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration several times in recent years, according to an Inspector General report sent to the FAA.
· Teen accused of reporter's sex-slay answered S&M smother ad. The accused teen killer of WABC newsman George Weber had answered a craigslist ad placed by the victim seeking a sadomasochistic partner to smother him, according to police documents unsealed Friday.
· Peterson jokes, chews gum at court appearance. Drew Peterson, who was arrested this week in the death of his third wife, joked with the media about his jail jumpsuit and chewed gum throughout his first court appearance Friday.
· List of most popular baby names released. The most popular 10 names for baby girls, in order, are: Emma, Isabella, Emily, Madison, Ava, Olivia, Sophia, Abigail, Elizabeth and Chloe. Topping the boys list is: Jacob, Michael, Ethan, Joshua and Daniel.
· Miss Calif. pageant to address contract violations. The Miss California USA pageant says its co-directors plan to address whether current title holder Carrie Prejean will hold onto her crown amid allegations of contract violations. Keith Lewis said Friday that he and fellow co-director Shanna Moakler will make their case public Monday.
Friday, May 8, 2009
· White House Military Office Chief Resigns Over Plane Flyover Flap. Louis Caldera, the man who organized the low-flying Air Force One plane that panicked New York City, delivered his resignation Friday as the White House released a photo of the plane flying over Ellis Island.
· Ohio Christian school tells student to skip prom. A student at a fundamentalist Baptist school that forbids dancing, rock music, hand-holding and kissing will be suspended if he takes his girlfriend to her public high school prom, his principal said.
· Man gets 7 years for using forged check to buy comic book. The purchase of a rare 1963 Spider-Man comic book with a forged check has resulted in a 7-year prison sentence for a former Naperville man.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Visceral [vis·cer·al] adj. 1. Instinctual: proceeding from instinct rather than from reasoned thinking or intellect. "A visceral business decision." 2. Emotional: characterized by or showing crude or elemental emotions.
· KFC apologizes for Oprah coupon blunder. Kentucky Fried Chicken is introducing a rain check program for customers who couldn't get a free meal with a coupon. "We would like to apologize to our customers who have been inconvenienced by the overwhelming response to our free Kentucky Grilled Chicken offer," said Roger Eaton, president of KFC.
· Judge denies Roman Polanski's bid to toss sex case. A judge on Thursday dismissed Roman Polanski's bid to throw out a decades-old sex case because the fugitive director failed to appear in court to press his request.
· Robot gets Facebook page. Facebook could soon be helping bridge the divide between humans and robots - researchers are giving a robot its own profile page to help foster meaningful relationships with people.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
· Ex-officer Drew Peterson charged with killing wife. A former police sergeant who authorities call the prime suspect in the disappearance of his wife, Stacy Peterson, has been indicted on murder charges, the Illinois state attorney's office said. A prosecutor told CNN a grand jury indicted Drew Peterson in the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio.
· Pennsylvania Boy, 11, Pleads Not Guilty in Killing of Pregnant Woman. An 11-year-old western Pennsylvania boy has pleaded not guilty to adult charges that he fatally shot his father's pregnant fiancee at their home.
· 'Bad Cop' lawsuits cost NYC a half-billion dollars. New York City has coughed up $540 million in payouts related to improper police actions since 1998 - and taxpayer cost for such cases hit a record high last year.
· Boy, 15, testifies he had sex with godmother. A 15-year-old boy told a judge yesterday that his former teacher, who is also his godmother, demanded that he have sex with her over a four-year period in exchange for gifts, alcohol and other favors.
· Hackers threaten to expose patients' prescription records. The FBI is on the trail of hackers who claim to have accessed the personal information of millions of Virginians. They're holding 8 million patients' records hostage, and are threatening to dispurse the sensitive data on the Internet if they don't receive a $10 million ransom.
· Police prying into stars' data. Law enforcement personnel looked up personal information on Patriots star Tom Brady 968 times - seeking anything from his driver's license photo and home address, to whether he had purchased a gun - and auditors discovered "repeated searches and queries" on dozens of other celebrities such as Matt Damon, and James Taylor, said two state officials familiar with the audit.
· John Edwards' ex-lover Rielle Hunter going ahead with paternity test. And you thought the John Edwards sex scandal couldn't get seamier. The ex-senator's former lover - furious at being portrayed as a stalker in his wife's media tour - reportedly is taking revenge and will allow a paternity test for her baby after all.
· Florida priest removed after beach photos with woman published. An internationally known Catholic priest has been removed from his posts after published photos showed him lying down bare-chested in an embrace with a woman on a beach.
· Obama seeks hikes in domestic spending. President Barack Obama is calling on Congress to reward generous budget increases to domestic programs while proposing relatively modest cuts to wasteful or obsolete programs that just won't seem to die.
· Britain’s top marginal tax rate at 61.5%. Britain’s attempts to fill the fiscal gulf created by recession are a dismal failure and a lesson to cash-strapped governments everywhere. Take marginal income tax rates, announced in the British budget of April 22nd. Effective marginal rates will climb to as much as 61.5% on those earning just over £100,000 ($147,000).
· Secretary: 'Flirtatious' Madoff Had Help in Scheme. Bernard Madoff's longtime secretary said she doesn't think he acted alone in bilking investors out of nearly $7 billion and talked of her former boss' wandering eye.
· Bristol Palin has second thoughts on teen sex. Unwed teen mom Bristol Palin did a turnabout Wednesday with her views on teen sex, saying abstinence is a realistic option for teenagers. "Regardless of what I did personally, I just think that abstinence is the only way you can prevent pregnancy."
· Obama's claim of tracking 'every dime' of stimulus delayed until 2010. Although President Obama has vowed that citizens will be able to track "every dime" of the $787 billion stimulus bill, a government website dedicated to the spending won't have details on contracts and grants complete until next spring.
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
· KFC coupon customers ask: Where's the chicken? Customers at a New York City KFC hoping to redeem coupons for a free meal were disgruntled when the fast-food restaurant ran out of its new grilled chicken. The coupons were available on Oprah.com for 24 hours beginning Tuesday after Oprah announced the meal promotion on her show.
· Man sent to prison after showing up drunk for court. Showing up drunk for his scheduled guilty plea last month meant a trip to state prison for a Pottsville man who was sentenced Tuesday in Schuylkill County Court.
· Father uses dog collar to shock kids. A Salem man was arrested Tuesday for putting an electric dog collar on each of his four children and shocking them. Todd Marcum, 41, said he did it "because he thought it was funny."
· Radio host threatens to sue over blacklist. Right-wing radio host Michael Savage is threatening to sue the British government after he was one of several Americans named on a newly published immigration blacklist.
· Wal-Mart Pays $2M Fine to Avoid Charges in Trampling. Wal-Mart agreed Wednesday to pay nearly $2 million and improve safety at its 92 New York stores as part of a deal with prosecutors that avoids criminal charges in the trampling death of a temporary worker.
· New Democrat Specter Loses Committee Seniority. It appears the grass wasn't greener on the other side for Arlen Specter, whose switch to the Democratic Party has cost him his seniority on Senate committees.
· Report: David Hasselhoff Hospitalized for Alcohol Poisoning. Actor David Hasselhoff was rushed to a Los Angeles hospital Saturday after his teenage daughter reportedly found him unconscious on the floor of his Encino California home as a result of alcohol poisoning.
· Face Transplant Recipient: 'I'm Not a Monster.' When Connie Culp heard a little kid call her a monster because of the shotgun blast that left her face horribly disfigured, she pulled out her driver's license to show the child what she used to look like. Years later, sporting the nation's first surgically attached face, she's stepped forward to show the rest of the world what she looks like now.
· NBA great Bing says running Detroit won't be easy. Basketball legend Dave Bing, elected as Detroit's third mayor in less than a year, promises swift and decisive action once he officially assumes the Motor City's top post.
· 2 top NY surgeons suspended for abandoning patient on operating table. Two of New York's highest-paid surgeons have been suspended for abandoning a patient in the operating room after she was anesthetized and prepped for brain surgery.
· Florida man charged with murder after baby thrown from car. A Florida man has been charged with first-degree murder after authorities say he threw a 3-month-old boy out of a moving car on a Tampa interstate.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
· Update: Topless photo could cost Prejean pageant crown. Miss California USA Carrie Prejean "breached her contract" by keeping semi-nude photos a secret and could be stripped of her beauty queen title, according to a state pageant spokesman.
· Obama refuses to release pictures of Air Force One. The $328,835 snapshots of an Air Force One backup plane buzzing lower Manhattan last week will not be shown to the public, the White House said yesterday.
· Obama, Biden wait in line to buy hamburgers. President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden took a short—but wholly noticeable—motorcade ride from the White House to Virginia and pulled into a small, independent burger joint called Ray's Hell Burger.
· Coca-Cola, Oracle, Intel Use Cayman Islands to Avoid U.S. Taxes. A five-story office building on South Church Street in the Caymans serves as the official address for 18,857 corporations. That building, called Ugland House, is listed in SEC filings as Seagate’s headquarters. About half those Cayman companies had billing addresses in the U.S., according to a 2008 GAO study.
· Mexicans are feeling the stigma. Mexico is one of 21 countries that have confirmed cases of the disease, but nonstop media coverage of a feared pandemic and the belief that the sometimes fatal virus originated in Mexico - which is disputed by Mexican health experts and officials - has overwhelmed calls by global health authorities to avoid panic.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Dogmatic [dog·mat·ic] adj. 1. Expressing rigid opinions; Prone to expressing strongly held beliefs and opinions. 2. Asserting opinions in a doctrinaire or arrogant manner; opinionated.
· Judge reprimanded for throwing domestic violence victim in jail. A Charlotte County judge faces a formal reprimand by the Florida Supreme Court for throwing a domestic-violence victim in jail overnight.
· Supreme Court to consider life in prison for juveniles. The nation's high court agreed to hear two Florida cases, one involving a 13-year-old convicted of raping an elderly woman and the other involving a 17-year-old who took part in an armed home-invasion robbery while on probation for an earlier violent crime.
· Stepfather charged in fatal crash. A Phillipsburg man who told police he drank at least five beers at a nightclub with his stepdaughter and then drove home now faces homicide by vehicle charges in the crash that killed her.
Monday, May 4, 2009
· Motorcyclist killed by driver painting her nails. Police in a Chicago suburb say a driver failed to stop at a red light because she was painting her finger nails, causing a fatal accident with a motorcyclist.
· Man caught dressed as 'Tina Turner' after stabbing son, 2. The Brooklyn man who accidentally slashed open the back of his two-year-old son's head was arrested while wearing woman's clothes, police sources said Monday.
· Oops! Pirates Captured After Threatening Wrong Ship. From a distance the large ship on the horizon looked like the perfect target, ripe for a successful spot of piracy. But as Somali pirates sped toward the vessel they failed to spot in the dazzling sun, that the "merchant ship" they thought they were intercepting was actually a French naval ship bristling with cannons, a helicopter, radar technology and armed commandos.
· Baby delivered with YouTube video. An engineer in England delivered his baby son after watching an instructional video on YouTube. Marc Stephens watched the videos as a precaution when his wife Jo started to feel some discomfort.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
· Canadian farmer possibly gave swine flu to pigs. More than a week after the swine flu outbreak rattled the world, with cases of infected people popping up from Mexico to South Korea, the new virus strain has shown up in a herd of swine. The catch, Canadian officials say, is that the animals may have caught the flu from a human.
· Feds eye John Edwards' possible use of campaign cash in cover-up of Rielle Hunter affair. The feds are investigating whether former Sen. John Edwards broke any laws - besides those of decency - when he cheated on his dying wife with a campaign staffer.
· Police Rescue Alleged Burglar From Rooftop. Emergency services mounted a three-hour operation involving a helicopter and a fire truck Sunday to retrieve a man who got stuck on the roof of a factory in Sydney that he was allegedly trying to rob.
· Pilot OK after crashing into toilets. A pilot was shook up but otherwise apparently unhurt Friday when his single-engine airplane crashed into a lot full of portable toilets just short of the Pierce County-Thun Field airport.
· Italian Prime Minister: 'I'm more popular than Obama and second only to Napoleon.' Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who has compared himself to Jesus Christ and Napoleon, boasts he is the world's most popular leader.
· Verdict in immigrant death case stirs outrage. Friends and relatives of two teens accused in the beating death of a Mexican immigrant struggled to contain their relief as not-guilty verdicts were announced on the most serious charges against the former high school football stars Friday.
· Jack Kemp, quarterback turned politician, dies. Jack Kemp, the former pro quarterback who turned fame on the gridiron into a career in national politics and a crusade for lower taxes, has died of cancer at age 73.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
· Officer Fired After Shocking Kids With Stun Gun. A Florida corrections officer was fired after zapping children with 50,000 volts of electricity during a "Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day" tour.
· Porn Star Considers Bid Against U.S. Senator Linked to Sex Ring. Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana is facing a potentially risque challenge next year. Porn star Stormy Daniels is considering running for the Republican's seat in 2010.
· UAW wins big stake in Chrysler. The United Auto Workers union appears to be the big winner in the Chrysler bankruptcy saga, having exercised its considerable political muscle to win a 55 percent stake in the country's third-largest automaker. The UAW spent nearly $5 million in independent expenditures to promote Obama's campaign, and some Chrysler debtholders contend that the union was unfairly rewarded for that support.
· NATO captures pirates off Somalia, then lets them go. Special forces on a Portuguese warship seized explosives from suspected Somali pirates after thwarting an attack on an oil tanker, but later freed the 19 men. Hours later pirates hijacked a cargo ship.
· Social workers charged in starvation death. By all accounts, there is blame to go around for the 2006 starvation death of disabled teenager Danieal Kelly. Her mother, Andrea Kelly, pleaded guilty to murder this week for criminally neglecting the once-vivacious girl. Her case worker and a supervisor are charged with involuntary manslaughter for alleged "ghost visits" to the family's squalid home. "At some point, the (case workers) realized they could get paid for doing nothing," US Attorney Laurie Magid said.
· Crippled inmate was alone with guards. The head of the state prison system said Friday that security camera footage of Timothy E. Helms being pulled from his smoke-filled cell shows guards did not beat him. But a second segment of tape shows the inmate being taken into another cell where he was alone with up to five guards, out of view of the prison's cameras, for 22 minutes.
· PETA offers to double KFC pothole money. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals fired back this morning at a marketing campaign by the KFC Corp. sponsoring pothole repairs across Chattanooga. PETA offered to double the $3,000 the city received from KFC to $6,000 from PETA in exchange for the right to place advertisements on city streets saying, “KFC Tortures Animals.”
· Soccer league bans team handshakes. Whether sealing a deal, showing you're a good sport or just saying hello, handshakes are an integral part of American society. But in some circles, handshakes are becoming something of an endangered species, thanks to swine flu concerns.
· Oregon Man Charged With Performing Surgery Without a License. Police in Oregon are looking for more patients of a man they say practiced medicine without a license, including minor surgery and procedures on a living room couch.
· Two charged in sex for debt payoff case in Oakland. Russell Bileci owed Maurice Williams $100. How police said they decided to settle the debt could cost both men long prison terms. Investigators said Friday that Bileci said he would repay the debt by allowing Williams to have sex with his 46-year-old girlfriend in a downtown residential hotel.
Friday, May 1, 2009
· FDA: Stop using Hydroxycut products. Hydroxycut products, popular dietary supplements used for weight loss, have been linked to liver damage and are being recalled, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Friday.
· Alley: "I've Let Everyone Down." Kirstie Alley was the spokesperson for Jenny Craig for three years, giving hope to people everywhere that they, too, could drop the weight - just as she did. Alley, 58, lost 75 pounds on the commercial weight loss plan, famously going from flab to fab. The "Cheers" star has since regained 85 pounds.
· Blind man falls to death in NYC elevator shaft. A blind man fell to his death in an elevator shaft inside a building with a history of elevator violations, and authorities on Friday were investigating whether malfunctioning doors played a role.
· Sneaker fashion: Michelle Obama's $540 tennis shoes. While volunteering Wednesday at a D.C. food bank, the First Lady sported her usual J.Crew cardigan, a pair of utilitarian capri pants and, on her feet, a sneaker splurge from French designer Lanvin: trainers that go for $540.
· Talk show host suspended for comments about Mexican immigrants. Jay Severin, the fiery right wing talk show host on Boston's WTKK-FM radio station, was suspended yesterday after calling Mexican immigrants "criminaliens," "primitives," "leeches," and exporters of "women with mustaches and VD," among other incendiary comments.
· Thief grabs Attorney General Brown's tires. Even the state's top law-enforcement officer isn't immune to crime. A scofflaw made off with the two passenger side tires from state Attorney General Jerry Brown's state-owned Toyota Camry hybrid as it was parked outside his Oakland hills home, his office said Thursday.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Pugnacious [pug·na·cious] adj. 1. Quarrelsome or combative in nature; belligerent. 2. Expressing an argument or opinion very forcefully: Rather than maintaining a calm demeanor, his boss was quite pugnacious.
· Pirates' former hostage favors more government protection. Richard Phillips, the cargo-ship captain whose capture by pirates triggered a dramatic U.S. Navy rescue off the coast of Africa, called on the federal government Thursday to provide military escorts for international shipping vessels.
· NASA may scrap plans to build moon base. NASA apparently has changed its mind about building a permanent base on the moon and may instead focus on sending astronauts to Mars, the space agency's acting head has told Congress.
Thursday, April 30, 2009
· Teenager spraying graffiti struck, killed by train. A Chelsea teen was struck by a train and killed, authorities said. Transit police said the 16-year-old was painting graffiti on a bridge in Everett Wednesday when the train came through.
· Californian Says Father Was Zodiac Killer. Deborah Perez announced to a skeptical crowd of reporters and Zodiac aficionados that the killer was her adoptive and long-dead father, Guy Ward Hendrickson, and that she had been present at at least one killing and had even scribbled some of the taunting notes the Zodiac sent to the press and the police.
· White House issues advisory after Obama Mexico trip. The White House has issued a health advisory outlining "protective measures" for anyone who traveled on President Barack Obama’s trip to Mexico after a member of the U.S. delegation came down with flu-like symptoms – and tests on his family showed they’re probably infected with the swine flu.
· Daughter, 12, fatally shot dad in head. Police said Thursday that a 12-year-old suburban Houston girl fatally shot her father in the back of the head, possibly while he was sleeping. A neighbor said there was "tension between the girl and her father."
· VP Joe Biden: Avoid subways, planes after swine flu outbreak. Vice President Joe Biden said he would not recommend taking any commercial flight or riding in a subway car “at this point” because swine flu virus can spread “in confined places.”
· Chrysler files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chrysler LLC filed for bankruptcy protection Thursday and announced it will temporarily halt most of its vehicle production while it completes a deal with Italian carmaker Fiat designed to revive its tattered fortunes.
· Police question black eye on octomom's son. Octuplets mother Nadya Suleman was questioned Wednesday by police and child welfare officials after her 4-year-old autistic son showed up at school with a black eye and bite marks.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
· AP Fact Check: Obama disowns deficit he helped shape. "That wasn't me," President Obama said on his 100th day in office, disclaiming responsibility for the huge budget deficit waiting for him on Day One. It actually was partly him — and the other Democrats controlling Congress the previous two years — who shaped the latest in a string of precipitously out-of-balance budgets.
· Attorney In 2007 Denver TB Scare Sues CDC; Says CDC Damaged His Reputation. The Atlanta attorney who caused an international health scare when he flew to Europe for his wedding even though he was infected with a drug-resistant form of tuberculosis is suing federal health officials, claiming they invaded his privacy. Andrew Speaker got worldwide attention in 2007 after he flew knowing he had tuberculosis.
· WHO raises pandemic alert to level 5. The World Health Organization raised its pandemic alert to 5, its second-highest level Wednesday, indicating the outbreak of swine flu that originated in Mexico is nearing widespread human infection.
· Regular Flu Kills 36,000 A Year. In the United States, there were 91 confirmed cases of swine flu so far, and one infant from Mexico died in Texas. Compare that to an average of 36,000 Americans who die every year from common, seasonal flu despite the generally wide availability of vaccines, according to statistics provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
· Man struck by car that slammed into dentist's office dies. A 59-year-old man who was struck by a car nearly two weeks ago when an elderly driver slammed into the lobby of a dentist's office has died, the Medical Examiner's Office said Wednesday.
· Jewelry store employee arrested for stealing gold in purse lining over six years. A Scarsdale mom was busted for stealing $12 million in gold and gems from a posh Queens jewelry store by slipping it out piece by piece in her purse lining.
· Obama Orders Review of New York Flight as Cost Put at $328,835. President Barack Obama ordered a review of a publicity-photo shoot with one of the planes that serves as Air Force One that cost taxpayers $328,835 and caused a furor in New York City.
· Mother Charged With Child Neglect, Allegedly Breast-Fed Baby While Drunk. A North Dakota mother has pleaded not guilty to child neglect after prosecutors alleged she was drunk while breast-feeding her 6-week-old baby.
· Lane Garrison is released from Calif. prison. A California prisons spokesman says the former "Prison Break" actor was paroled and picked up from a facility in Tehachapi, Calif., early Wednesday morning.
· First swine flu death in U.S. reported. A 2-year-old child in Texas has become the first fatality from swine flu in the United States, the acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday.
· Priest forgives suspect in confessional stabbing. The Rev. Michael Massaro says he has a few aches and pains, but a good night's sleep has done him some good as he recovers from being attacked Saturday with a knife in a confessional at his church.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
· FAA Memo: Feds Knew NYC Flyover Would Cause Panic. Federal officials knew that sending two fighter jets and Air Force One to buzz ground zero and Lady Liberty might set off nightmarish fears of a 9/11 replay, but they still ordered the photo-op kept secret from the public.
· Another Wall Street Merger for Oliver Stone, Michael Douglas. Oscar-winning writer-director-conspiracy theorist Oliver Stone is reteaming with Wall Street star Michael Douglas for a sequel to their 1987 film about a young stockbroker who sells his moral soul for the promise of a big payday.
· Joke about mom leads to attack. An offhand joke about a customer's mom turned an ordinary visit to a Brooklyn convenience store into a bloody melee that left a teenager unconscious from a hammer blow to the head, his friend testified yesterday.
· Officials say US deaths expected from swine flu. Federal officials warned on Tuesday that swine-flu related deaths were likely in the United States as the disease that killed scores in Mexico continued to spread across the world and governments intensified steps to battle the outbreak.
· Longtime GOP Sen. Specter now a Democrat. Veteran Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter told colleagues Tuesday that he switched from the Republican to the Democratic Party, Sen. Harry Reid says. The Specter party switch would give Democrats a filibuster-proof Senate majority of 60 seats if Al Franken holds his current lead.
· Ryanair boss says swine flu only a risk for 'slumdwellers.' The outspoken head of the Irish budget airline Ryanair has dismissed apocalyptic warnings of a global swine flu pandemic, saying that the virus was only a risk to Asians and Mexicans “living in slums.”
· Leno back on the stage, joking about his illness. Jay Leno bounced back from an illness, returning to "Tonight" with jokes about swine flu, the 103-degree fever that sent him to the hospital. "I realized I've got a really bad HMO. Like, for X-rays they had to take me over to Burbank Airport and put me through the baggage machine," Leno said.
· Update: White House was updating Air Force One file photo. An administration official says a presidential Boeing 747 and a fighter jet flew low near ground zero in New York City Monday because the White House Military Office wanted to update its file photo of the president's plane near the Statue of Liberty.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Incongruous [in·con·gru·ous] adj. 1. Lacking in harmony; incompatible. 2. Not in agreement, as with principles; inconsistent: a plan incongruous with reason. 3. Not in keeping with what is correct, proper, or logical; inappropriate: incongruous behavior.
· 'Gorgeous' crime scene investigator found stabbed, bound in her apartment. Detectives are investigating the mysterious death of a young NYPD criminalist who was found tied to her bed with a knife stuck in her neck.
· Five Charged in 'Nightmare' $70M Mortgage Scheme. More than 1,000 people were defrauded out of about $70 million by a group advertising the dream of homeownership in what turned out to be a nightmare Ponzi scheme, federal and Maryland officials said Monday.
· Girl Shot Dead Leaving Massachusetts Baby Shower. A fire chief in Massachusetts is investigating why it took nearly 20 minutes for an ambulance to arrive at the scene of a fatal shooting at a baby shower over the weekend.
Monday, April 27, 2009
· Update: White House Official Apologizes for Air Force One Photo Op in New York City. White House Military Office Director Louis Caldera apologized for any panic caused by a flight mission and photo op that looked like Air Force One and fighter jets heading toward the New York City skyline Monday morning.
· Mexico faces criticism over swine flu response. Two weeks after the first known swine flu death, Mexico still hasn't given medicine to the families of the dead. It hasn't determined where the outbreak began or how it spread.
· Yemen frees ship, captures pirates. Yemeni special forces Monday freed a Yemeni oil tanker seized by Somali pirates in the Gulf of Aden, killing three pirates and capturing at least nine on board, a government official said.
· 7 NASCAR Fans Injured by Wild Wreck at Talladega. Seven fans sustained minor injuries after being struck by flying debris when Carl Edwards' car went airborne into the safety fence on the final lap of the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday.
· Church giving 'great sex' sermons might get booted. Sermons about sex - and advertisements depicting sockless feet snuggling between bedsheets - have landed a church in hot water with Brevard Public Schools officials.
· Prince Charles charters luxury private jet to promote environmental issues. Prince Charles is being accused of hypocrisy after it was revealed that he is chartering a luxury private jet for a tour of Europe to promote environmental issues.
· Iowa becomes 3rd state where gays can legally wed. Iowa becomes the third state where same-sex couples can legally wed, following Massachusetts and Iowa. Vermont has legalized gay marriage effective Sept. 1. Gay marriage was legal in California for five months, until a state referendum to ban it passed last fall.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
· Swine flu confirmed in NYC high school students. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed that students at a city high school were infected with swine flu. Some students went to Cancun on a spring break trip two weeks ago.
· 81 dead in Mexico as flu emergency goes global. By Sunday, 81 deaths had been deemed "likely linked" to a deadly new strain of the virus by health authorities in Mexico. Viral testing has confirmed 20 cases.
· Italy cruise ship fires on Somali pirates. An Italian cruise ship with 1,500 people on board fended off a pirate attack far off the coast of Somalia when its Israeli private security forces exchanged fire with the bandits and drove them away, the commander said Sunday.
· Man caught in 'Dateline' child-sex sting gets 24 years. A Midlothian man who was once caught in a child-sex sting involving NBC’s Dateline TV program was sentenced to 24 years in federal prison Friday for trying to entice another child into sex acts.
· Mooning leads to mistrial in murder case. An Arizona judge has declared a mistrial in a murder case because the defendant's brother dropped his pants, gestured and made threatening comments in the presence of jurors.
· Polo team vet grief-stricken after horse deaths. When Argentine veterinarian Felix Crespo injected 21 elite polo horses with a vitamin supplement shortly before a championship match in Florida, he never imagined they would all be dead the next day.
· 'Golden Girls' star Bea Arthur dies at 86. Beatrice Arthur, the tall, deep-voiced actress who considered herself lucky to be discovered by television executives after a long stage career that included a Tony award for the musical "Mame," died Saturday.
Saturday, April 25, 2009
· Craigslist suspect: 'There is more coming out.' A day after trying to hang himself in jail, accused Craigslist killer Philip Markoff reportedly broke down and told visiting relatives to "forget about me." "There is more coming out," the med student turned murder suspect told his brother Jonathan and sister-in-law.
· Toddler's Body Found in River After Uncle's Warning. The body of a 3-year-old New Jersey girl was found in the Passaic River, just hours after her uncle left with her and told family members "to watch the 6 o'clock news tonight."
· Rihanna seeking return of pricey jewelry. Rihanna is seeking the return of $1.4 million in jewelry she was wearing the night she was allegedly beaten by Chris Brown. Donald Etra, an attorney for the "Umbrella" singer, filed a motion Tuesday asking that Los Angeles police and prosecutors return a pair of earrings and three rings, which were seized as evidence.
· Accused Man Says South Carolina Fire Not His Fault. Marc Torchi and his family have been getting death threats since South Carolina officials blamed him for the wildfire that has destroyed more than 70 homes and scorched 31 square miles, causing an estimated $16 million in damage. But Torchi is flabbergasted county firefighters aren't taking responsibility after they came to his Conway home not once but twice to put out a small yard fire that apparently rekindled four days later.
· Passengers Subdue 'Unruly' Man Who Charged Cockpit. A plane was diverted to Logan Airport just after 10 p.m. Friday after a passenger on a transatlantic flight tried to break into the cockpit and was subdued by passengers, Massachusetts State Police said.
· Fear, anger and fatalism over swine flu in Mexico. The schools and museums are closed. Sold-out games between Mexico's most popular soccer teams are being played in empty stadiums. Health workers are ordering sickly passengers off subways and buses. And while bars and nightclubs filled up as usual, even some teenagers were dancing with surgical masks on.
· Craigslist founder isn't closing 'erotic' section. The founder of Craigslist does not plan to close the "erotic services" section of the Web site despite criticism that has intensified after a medical student was accused of killing a Boston masseuse who advertised there.
· $20M in clients' cash missing in murder-suicide case. More than $20 million from dozens of clients is unaccounted for in the aftermath of what police say was a murder-suicide by the attorney who invested the money, according to a source with direct knowledge of deceased lawyer William Parente's financial dealings.
Friday, April 24, 2009
· Man Pretending to Fall Off Bridge Falls Off Bridge. Police said a 23-year-old man is in stable condition after he pretended that he was falling off a bridge over the Minnesota River, then actually fell off the bridge.
· Calif. police seek dad who had son, 7, tattooed. Police in California are looking for a man accused of holding down his 7-year-old son while another man tattooed the child's belly with a street gang sign.
· Sen. Feinstein intervenes to help lesbian mother threatened with deportation. It literally took an act of Congress, but a native of the Philippines threatened with deportation who is the mother of twin boys born in the Bay Area won't have to choose between separation from her sons, or forcing them and her same-sex partner to leave the United States.
· Quadriplegic child found dead in storage facility. Michigan authorities are investigating whether foul play led to the death of a 9-year-old quadriplegic girl whose body was found inside a public storage facility.
· First lady says she sneaks out for burgers. First lady Michelle Obama pulled back the curtains a little bit on life in the White House, revealing that she and her staff like to sneak out to eat at fun places.
· Woman sneaks into Gainesville prison, man flees. A Gainesville woman accused of sneaking into a minimum-security prison for a rendezvous with her boyfriend has been arrested and he remains a fugitive after jumping out a window.
· Comedian's kin jailed after 'terrible betrayal.' Comedian Dane Cook took a somber tone and described a sense of "terrible betrayal" in discussing the recent arrest of his half brother, who is accused of embezzling millions from him.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
· Apple Apologizes for iPhone 'Baby Shaker' Game. Apple Inc. is apologizing for allowing a 99-cent iPhone game called "Baby Shaker" that let a player quiet a virtual crying infant by shaking the device.
· Investors Lost Millions to Man Who Killed Family. At least three investors claim they lost millions of dollars working with a New York tax attorney who police say killed himself after fatally beating and asphyxiating his wife and two daughters, a lawyer said Thursday.
· Obama Earth Day Flights Burned More Than 9,000 Gallons Of Fuel. President Obama could have saved at least 9,116 gallons of fuel by giving his speech at the White House – but no wind turbines are manufactured there.
· Update: Pharmacy says it goofed in making drugs for horses. A Florida pharmacy has told The Associated Press it incorrectly prepared a medication for 21 polo horses that died over the weekend while preparing to play in a championship match.
· Underwear of Slain Masseuse Found in Accused 'Craigslist Killer's' Apartment. The underwear of a masseuse shot dead by the "Craigslist Killer" was allegedly found in the apartment of med student suspect Philip Markoff and a gun was stuffed into a hollowed-out "Gray's Anatomy" textbook.
· BofA CEO says was told to be quiet on Merrill. Bank of America Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis told the New York attorney general he believed former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke wanted him to keep quiet about the worsening terms of the bank's acquisition of Merrill Lynch.
· GM to Close Most U.S. Factories for Summer. Thousands of GM workers could learn as early as Thursday that they will be idle for up to nine weeks this summer as the automaker's plants stop making all but its most popular cars and trucks. Thousands of workers could be laid off but would still get most of their pay because their United Auto Workers union contract requires the company to make up much of the difference.
· FDA to allow 'morning-after' pill for 17-year-olds. Women's groups cheered the government's decision to allow 17-year-olds to buy the "morning-after" emergency contraceptive without a doctor's prescription, but conservatives denounced it as a blow to parental supervision of teens.
· Former professor in noose case seeks $200M in lawsuit. A professor who gained national attention when a noose was found on her office door and was later fired for alleged plagiarism has filed a defamation lawsuit against her former school.
· Disease Samples Missing From Lab, Army Says. U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick spokeswoman Caree Vander Linden said samples of Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis were discovered missing last year in an inventory of a group of samples left by a departing researcher.
· Levi threatens legal action against Palin. Teen father Levi Johnston dropped a bombshell in the escalating family feud between Johnston’s family and the family of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, whose eldest daughter is the mother of Johnston’s infant son.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
· High court asked whether minority quotas needed. The U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to decide whether there is a continued need for special treatment for minorities, or whether enough progress has been made to make existing laws obsolete, especially in a political atmosphere where an African-American occupies the White House.
· Craigslist suspect had items from victims. A Boston University medical student accused of robbing women who advertised erotic services on Craigslist, killing one of them, had items belonging to both victims in his apartment, a law enforcement source said Wednesday.
· Napolitano blames Canada for 9/11 hijackers. Canada was rushing to defend its border security on Tuesday amid a diplomatic scuffle with the U.S., which erupted after Washington's homeland security chief suggested that the 9-11 terrorists entered the U.S. through Canada.
· 'How did she get her job?' In an interview broadcast Monday on the CBC, Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano attempted to justify her call for stricter border security on the premise that "suspected or known terrorists" have entered the U. S. across the Canadian border, including the perpetrators of the 9/11 attack. All the 9/11 terrorists, of course, entered the United States directly from overseas. Informed of her error, Ms. Napolitano blustered: "I can't talk to that. I can talk about the future.
· Freddie Mac CFO commits suicide. David Kellermann, acting chief financial officer of Freddie Mac, committed suicide in his Hunter Mill Estates home this morning. Government-controlled Freddie Mac has been criticized heavily for reckless business practices.
· $800,000 in fees go to MLK family for D.C. memorial. The family of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has charged the foundation building a monument to the civil rights leader on the National Mall about $800,000 for the use of his words and image - an arrangement one leading scholar says King would have found offensive. King would have been “absolutely scandalized by the profiteering behavior of his children,” historian David Garrow said.
· New York Times Debt at $1.3 Billion. One day after The New York Times received five Pulitzer Prizes, The New York Times Company said in its 2009 First-Quarter conference call that total revenue had declined 18.6 percent. The company's debt at the end of the quarter totaled $1.3 billion.
· Boy finds forgotten gun, shoots self in head. A Florida boy remains in stable condition just days after he found his parents' long-forgotten handgun in a closet and accidentally shot himself in the head.
· Prosecutors say pirate was brazen ringleader. Prosecutors say Abdiwali Abdiqadir Muse was not shy about making his presence known on the Maersk Alabama, brazenly tearing through the ship in a way that belied his young age and skinny, 5-foot-2 frame.
· Miss California, thanks for being honest. A lot of folks are always saying they like to keep it real, that they want authenticity and straight talk. Yet when someone actually does it, there is hell to pay. What's interesting about this is that many of the same folks who are slamming her for her remark voted for President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, who both have the same belief: that marriage should be between a man and a woman.
· Fidel Castro: Obama 'Misinterpreted' Raul's Words. Fidel Castro said Tuesday that President Barack Obama "misinterpreted" his brother Raul's sentiments toward the United States and bristled at any suggestion Cuba should free political prisoners or reduce official fees on money sent to the island from the U.S.
· Preppie Killer Robert Chambers' gal avoids jail term. The girlfriend of Preppie Killer Robert Chambers was sentenced to probation in a Manhattan drug case - but not before she asked the judge for permission to visit her longtime beau in prison.
· Judge Orders Defendant's Mouth Taped Shut. An eastern Idaho judge who lost patience with the disruptive behavior of a defendant ordered court officials to tape the man's mouth shut with duct tape during a court hearing.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
· San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom running for governor. Mayor Gavin Newsom formally announced his candidacy for California governor Tuesday, offering himself as an heir to the same groundswell for generational change that helped send President Barack Obama to the White House.
· Update: Suspect in 'Craigslist Killer' case allegedly had gambling debts. The accused "Craigslist Killer" may have been driven by gambling debts, authorities said. Police sources speculated that Philip Markoff, a preppy Boston University medical student engaged to be married in August, devised a fiendish plan to pay off the debts by robbing escorts who might not report the attacks.
· Teen soils self after deputy surprises him. A teenager suspected of car burglary was so surprised when he opened a car door to find a police officer sitting inside that he crapped his pants, police said.
· President Beefcake? D.C. magazine to feature shirtless Obama on cover. President Obama appears shirtless in a bathing suit on the cover of May issue of The Washingtonian magazine. The magazine's excuse? The pec pic illustrates the #2 reason (out of 26) to love living in the nation’s capital: “Our New Neighbor is Hot.”
· Med student to be arraigned in Craigslist slaying. A medical student will be arraigned Tuesday on a murder charge in Boston Municipal Court in connection with the death of a woman who may have been contacted through a Craigslist ad, police said.
· Accused Craigslist killer's fiancee: He's innocent. The fiancee of a Boston medical school student accused of fatally shooting a woman who placed an ad on Craigslist said police have the wrong man and there is no way he could have done it.
· Senator's husband cashes in on crisis. On the day the new Congress convened this year, Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation to route $25 billion in taxpayer money to a government agency that had just awarded her husband's real estate firm a lucrative contract to sell foreclosed properties at compensation rates higher than the industry norms.
· Maersk pirate arrives in New York. The pirate suspect arrested in the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama was all smiles on arriving in New York City late Monday, escorted by a phalanx of law enforcement officers.
· FBI's newest 'Most Wanted' terrorist is American. For the first time, an accused domestic terrorist is being added to the FBI's list of "Most Wanted" terror suspects. Daniel Andreas San Diego, a 31-year-old computer specialist from Berkeley, Calif., is wanted for the 2003 bombings of two corporate offices in California.
Monday, April 20, 2009
· Two Kidnapped New Orleans Teens Found Dead. The bodies of a two college students kidnapped over the weekend were found Monday inside an abandoned house in a section of New Orleans east of the Mississippi River.
· FBI Police Officers Accused of Using a Security Camera to Watch Girls Dressing Room. An FBI police officer is under arrest and a warrant has been issued for the arrest of another officer, after the pair allegedly used a security camera to watch girls in a dressing room, during a charity prom dress event, court documents say. [CR]
· Detroit councilman walks away from his mortgage. City Councilman Kwame Kenyatta and his wife packed up their belongings, locked the doors, mailed in the keys and walked away — adding another vacant house to the thousands in a city hard hit by the nation's mortgage crisis.
· 'Craigslist Killer' Suspect in Custody. A man was held in custody Monday in connection with the death last week in a luxury hotel of a woman who advertised massage services on Craigslist, Boston police said.
· Traffic Camera Lobbyists Buy Victory in Maryland Legislature. Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley (D) is expected to sign into law recently passed legislation authorizing a massive expansion in the use of speed cameras throughout the state. TheNewspaper reviewed state records over the past ten years and found that parties with a direct financial interest in automated ticketing showered members of the Maryland General Assembly and the governor with $707,725 in gifts and campaign cash.
· Sale fails to bail out last Titanic survivor. The last living survivor of the Titanic earned only a small fraction of what auctioneers hoped to raise when she sold her final remaining mementos of the doomed ship to pay nursing home bills.
· Gov. David Paterson's popularity tanks; New Yorkers want Eliot Spitzer back. More New Yorkers would prefer to see Eliot Spitzer back in office as governor than keep Gov. David Paterson on the job, according to a recent poll.
· Miss California Sparks Furor With Gay Marriage Comments. When asked whether she believed in gay marriage, Miss California, Carrie Prejean, said "I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there, but that's how I was raised." Miss California's answer sparked a shouting match in the lobby after the show. "It's ugly," said Scott Ihrig, a gay man, who attended the pageant with his partner. "That is not the values of 95 percent of the people in this audience. Look around this audience and tell me how many gay men there are."
· Court to decide if prosecutors can be sued. Supreme Court will consider whether prosecutors have to face a lawsuit from two men whose convictions for killing a retired police officer were set aside.
· Teen Strip-Search Case Heads to U.S. Supreme Court. Savana Redding was 13 years old when she was told to remove her clothes for a strip search by school officials looking for two ibuprofen pills. And while the humiliation hasn't diminished in the past five and a half years, she hopes the U.S. Supreme Court can do something about the emotional scar.
· Mystery surrounds deaths of horses before polo match. Florida agriculture scientists are performing necropsies today on 21 horses that died as they were prepared to compete in a Sunday polo match in Wellington, Florida.
· Obama: Cut Budget by 1/35,000th. In what amounts to a scene out of Hollywood's version of executive power, President Obama will convene his first Cabinet meeting this morning and order his department chiefs to immediately cut a combined $100 million from their $3.5 trillion budgets.
· Photographer: Madonna wrong about NY horse fall. A photographer who says he captured images of Madonna after she fell off a horse in the Hamptons over the weekend disputes the singer's account of how the accident happened. Madonna's spokeswoman Liz Rosenberg says the singer took the tumble Saturday when her horse was spooked by paparazzi.
· Actress Found Hanged Days After Show's Finale. A talented young actress who starred in a long-running TV series has been found hanged two days after the show ended. Stephanie Parker starred in the TV series Belonging for seven years.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
· 'Craigslist Killer' Victim Reportedly Worked for N.Y. Madam. The woman who was allegedly murdered in Boston by the "craigslist killer" once worked for one of New York City's most notorious madams, the Daily News reported.
· Lawyer for Sandra Cantu Murder Suspect Wants Girl's Body Exhumed. The lawyer for a Northern California Sunday school teacher charged with murdering and raping an 8-year-old girl said this week he wants the child's body exhumed.
· Jackie Chan: Chinese people need to be controlled. Action star Jackie Chan said Saturday he's not sure if a free society is a good thing for China and that he's starting to think "we Chinese need to be controlled."
· Man Kills Wife, 3 Kids Before Fatally Shooting Himself in Maryland. An accountant for a railroad operator killed his wife and their three children before fatally shooting himself in a northwest Maryland home, leaving a gruesome scene that was discovered Saturday by the youngsters' grandfather, authorities said.
Saturday, April 18, 2009
· Public skeptical that woman killed, raped girl. Callers have inundated the phone lines of Tracy police, saying it can't be. Veteran homicide and sex-crime researchers say they cannot recall a case quite like it. Even the investigators themselves looked at the evidence and initially said "no way."
· Bogus waiter tricks customers at 2 NJ restaurants. Police say a man posing as a waiter collected $186 in cash from diners at two restaurants in New Jersey and walked out with the money in his pocket.
· Delta stops using India call centers. Delta Air Lines Inc has stopped using India-based call centers to handle sales and reservations after a backlash from customers. Delta said it stopped routing calls to India-based call centers over the first three months of the year. Customers had complained they had trouble communicating with Indian agents. "Our customers are not shy about letting us have that feedback."
· Florida Lottery Winner Opens Nude Dude Ranch. A multi-million-dollar lottery winner in Florida is riling some by opening up his own. Tim Clements hit a $3.3 million jackpot in 2004, and wanted to return to the farm life he grew up in.
· Congress Set to End Tax-Free Online Shopping. The free ride may soon be over. For the past decade and a half, most Internet shoppers haven't been forced to pay sales tax while buying goods online. But now, an alliance of "brick-and-mortar" retailers and state governments has teamed up to end that — and they've crafted federal legislation that may be introduced in Congress as early as next week.
· US looks to hackers to protect cyber networks. Wanted: Computer hackers. With millions of digital scans and attacks each day, federal authorities are looking for hackers - not to prosecute them, but to pay them to secure the nation's networks.
· Solar finds it hard to squeeze water from desert. A westward dash to power electricity-hungry cities by cashing in on the desert's most abundant resource — sunshine — is clashing with efforts to protect the tiny pupfish and desert tortoise and stinginess over the region's rarest resource: water.
· Meanest ol' bartender in Austin dead at 95. Sarah Ransom, the crusty old bartender and owner of the Dry Creek Cafe beer joint at 4812 Mount Bonnell Road, died Thursday night at Scott & White Memorial Hospital in Temple. She would have been 96 next Thursday. [D]
· Amusement Ride Topples Over on Children. A spokeswoman for the Puyallup, Wash., Spring Fair says an amusement swing ride for small children has toppled over at the fairgrounds and one child has been sent to a hospital.
· Pirates Attack Tanker; NATO Frees 20 Fishermen. Pirates attacked a tanker in the Gulf of Aden on Saturday, and NATO forces called to the rescue detained seven Somalis behind the assault and freed 20 Yemenese fisherman being held hostage on another hijacked boat.
· North Korea: Sanctions a declaration of war. North Korea said today it will view as a "declaration of war" any sanctions or pressure applied against it after its rocket launch earlier this month. In an announcement on state-run television, the country said it was ready to step up efforts to develop nuclear weapons and poised for a military response to any moves against it.
Friday, April 17, 2009
· Indy driver Castroneves acquitted in tax case. Indy race car champion and "Dancing With the Stars" winner Helio Castroneves was acquitted Friday of most charges that he worked with his sister and lawyer to evade more than $2.3 million in U.S. income taxes.
· Cop says she's a victim of fellow officer's identity theft scam. A retired city cop who won $120,000 from the city because a supervisor made her iron his shirts says she has been victimized by a fellow officer again.
· McDonald's golden arches topple in Arizona high winds. A giant set of golden arches outside a McDonald’s in eastern Arizona toppled in high winds Wednesday, crushing a Naperville couple’s Chevy Trailblazer as they sat inside the parked vehicle.
· Black-and-white alleged cover-up in shooting of Mt. Vernon Officer. A white Westchester cop gunned down an off-duty black officer at point-blank range and then "secreted" the slain cop's badge to cover up his crime, an explosive new lawsuit charged.
· Liberal actress says tea parties were racist. Liberal actress and political activist Janeane Garofalo said "Let's be very honest about what this is about. This is not about bashing Democrats. It's not about taxes. They have no idea what the Boston Tea party was about. They don't know their history at all. It's about hating a black man in the White House."
· Co-workers describe shooter as a joking family man. Neighbors and co-workers described a man who police said killed two co-workers and himself at a California hospital as a family man who cracked jokes and smiled a lot.
· Mystery Donors Give More Than $45 Million to 9 Universities. A mystery is unfolding in the world of college fundraising: During the past few weeks, at least nine universities have received gifts totaling more than $45 million, and the schools had to promise not to try to find out the giver's identity.
· Sex offender found nude, self-mutilated; bit tip of own penis off. A convicted child molester was found naked and bleeding behind a Brooklyn building - a victim of sexual self-mutilation, police sources said.
· Georgetown University Hid Religious Symbols at White House Request. Georgetown University, a Catholic institution, covered up religious insignia symbolizing the name of Jesus during President Obama's address there Tuesday after the White House requested the change.
· Sen. Burris Faces $111G Mountain of Debt. The Illinois Democrat's Chicago-based media consultant, Del Marie Cobb, confirmed that Burris raised only $845 during the first quarter of this year and owes $111,000.
· WTC office towers could be put off for decades. Construction of several ground zero office towers could be put off for decades because of the failing real estate market, the site's owners said Thursday, citing an analysis that projected one skyscraper might not be built and occupied until 35 years after Sept. 11.
· Ex-CIA Chief Criticizes Release of Interrogation Memos. Former CIA Director Michael Hayden says release of the memos will give terrorists a precise guide for what to expect in a CIA interrogation if those methods are ever approved for use again.
· Allen Stanford's face for sale on souvenir tile. The mustached face of Sir Allen Stanford, the billionaire Texan accused of an $8 billion fraud by U.S. regulators, can be yours for only $29.99. A Fort Myers, Florida, entrepreneur has put Stanford's face on a "limited edition" commemorative tile that he peddles on eBay Inc's online auction site.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
· Yanks open new $1.5 billion stadium with humiliating 10-2 loss. The Yankees opened baseball's fanciest and priciest ballpark Thursday with a performance that would have embarrassed Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig from their famous pinstriped past.
· Update: Domino's Prankster A Sex Offender. The 31-year-old woman who filmed herself and a co-worker as they joked about contaminating food at a Domino's Pizza in North Carolina is a registered sex offender who last year pleaded guilty to engaging in an illicit act with a 14-year-old girl.
· Pastor Claims Abuse at Border Patrol Checkpoint. An Arizona Baptist pastor who was left bloodied and indignant Tuesday night after a stop at the Border Patrol's checkpoint on eastbound Interstate 8 wonders in a recent video, "Why is this happening in the United States of America?" [Video]
· Man leaps to death from airplane. An apparently distressed passenger aboard a small charter flight Wednesday night to Cambridge Bay forced open the aircraft's door and leapt to his death, police said.
· Boy, 9, makes plastic parachute. It didn't work. A friend says a 9-year-old New York City boy might have been imitating a video game character when he apparently made a plastic parachute and jumped to his death from his apartment building's 13-story roof. The boy's mother told police she had gone to the store.
· Homeland security chief apologizes to vets. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano apologized Thursday after veterans groups were offended by a department report about right-wing extremism. The report stated returning military veterans "could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone-wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks." It cited Timothy McVeigh as an example.
· Domino's nightmare holds lessons for marketers. It's a PR nightmare scenario: A national fast-food chain has to respond to a video, spreading rapidly online, that shows one of its employees picking his nose and placing the result in the food he's making.
· The bar which gets you tipsy on its air. Adults are often reminded to drink responsibly but customers entering a new cocktail bar where they are literally enveloped in a mist of alcohol are warned to breathe responsibly.
· Boulder Woman Tapes Puppy To Fridge. Boulder police are investigating a domestic spat that they say escalated into animal cruelty when a woman wrapped her boyfriend's dog in packing tape then stuck it on the side of the refrigerator.
· Boy, girl struck and killed by Amtrak train. A boy and a girl were standing on one set of railroad tracks waiting for a freight train to pass on another set when they were struck from behind by an Amtrak train near Woodland, Washington.
· One Question Napolitano. Today, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano went on MSNBC's Morning Joe but they were only allowed to ask one question. “We'll ask our audience whether we should have had her on the show or not under those conditions.” Joe Scarborough said.
· Quote of the week. In response to new proposed legislation by San Francisco to sell and distribute medical Marijuana, "The mayor will have to hash this out with public health officials," press secretary Nathan Ballard said. "It's the mayor's job to weed out bad legislation. And to be blunt, this sounds pretty bad."
· NBC is Desperate. Gov. Pat Quinn says the idea of a reality TV show starring Rod Blagojevich is "hard to believe." But Quinn said Wednesday that Blagojevich has every right to ask a federal judge for permission to go to Costa Rica to film NBC's "I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here!"
· Woman drives into dental office. An 86-year-old woman accidentally drove her sedan into the reception area of a San Diego dental office Wednesday morning, injuring a man inside, according to authorities.
· Arrest Made in Attempted DC Kidnapping. Montgomery County authorities say they've arrested a woman who left a Rockville elementary school with a child who wasn't hers and charged her with attempted kidnapping. Her husband told police that she thought her daughter wasn't being treated properly at school.
· Fan sues Yankees over ejection. A baseball fan who says he was ejected from Yankee Stadium by police after he left his seat to use the bathroom during the playing of God Bless America sued the New York Yankees and the city on Wednesday.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
· No takers for Philadelphia's $10,000 a year tax break to hire ex-cons. Today's tax-filing deadline is expected to come and go without a single company applying for one penny of Mayor Nutter's new $5 million tax-credit program that was designed to encourage the hiring of ex-offenders.
· Burger King to scrap ad after complaint. Fast food giant Burger King apologized Tuesday for an advertisement featuring a squat Mexican draped in his country's flag next to a tall American cowboy and said it would change the campaign
· Coke cop says oral sex to blame for dirty test. A decorated ex-cop who claimed he tested positive for cocaine because he ingested the drug during oral sex with his girlfriend can't have his job back, a Manhattan judge has ruled. [CR]
· Octomom seeks to trademark her tabloid nickname. The California woman who gave birth in January to eight babies has filed an application to trademark the word "Octomom," which she wants to slap on disposable diapers and assorted clothing items.
· Hulk Hogan Says 'I Totally Understand OJ' Simpson. Hulk Hogan is sounding homicidal over the way his wife Linda dumped him, forced him out of his $18 million mansion, allegedly started spending his money at the rate of $40,000 a month and dating "some shaggy-haired pool boy 30 years her junior," Rolling Stone reports.
· Somali pirates vow to hunt down, kill Americans. Somali pirates vowed to hunt down American ships and kill their sailors and French forces detained 11 other brigands in a high-seas raid as tensions ratcheted up Wednesday off Africa's volatile eastern coast. Pirates fired grenades and automatic weapons at an American freighter loaded with food aid but the ship escaped and was heading to Kenya under U.S. Navy guard.
· Congressional power to fend off pirates. A little-known congressional power could help the federal government keep the Somali pirates in check — and possibly do it for a discount price. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) and a growing number of national security experts are calling on Congress to consider using letters of marque and reprisal, a power written into the Constitution that allows privateers to seize or destroy enemies, their loot and their vessels in exchange for bounty money.
· Anti-addiction pills may turn rehab on its head. Walter Kent was a hard-core alcoholic for 30 years. Now, he helps out in the kitchen in a bar and isn't tempted to drink. He credits a prescription medication called naltrexone. It's part of a new generation of anti-addiction drugs that may turn the world of rehab on its head. But despite studies showing effectiveness, established rehab programs have been slow to adopt the use of medication.
· Student killed in love triangle involving teacher. An 18-year-old high school student caught with his 48-year-old math teacher in her bedroom was stabbed to death by her boyfriend, who was himself a former student of hers, police said Tuesday.
· Pirates attack another U.S. ship. A U.S.-flagged cargo ship bound for Kenya was attacked Tuesday night by Somali pirates, according to senior U.S. military officials. The pirates never made it onto the Liberty Sun, but they fired rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons.
· Homeland Security Warns of Rise in Right-Wing Extremism. The Department of Homeland Security is warning law enforcement agencies that recent news is helping "right-wing extremist groups" recruit new members and could lead to violence, and warns about the possible recruitment and radicalization of returning veterans.
· Illegal immigrants having more kids in US. Growing numbers of children of illegal immigrants are being born in this country, and they are nearly twice as likely to live in poverty than those with American-born parents, a report says.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
· Update: Somali pirates hijack 4 ships, take 60 hostages. Somali pirates captured four ships and took more than 60 crew members hostage in a brazen hijacking spree, while the American captain freed from their grip planned to reunite with his crew and fly home Wednesday to the United States.
· Alleged Nazi removed from Ohio home in wheelchair. U.S. immigration officers carried John Demjanjuk from his Ohio home on Tuesday to deport him to Germany, where an arrest warrant alleges the frail 89-year-old was a Nazi death camp guard.
· Kentucky Grilled Chicken. Would KGC ever have the same ring? In a culinary gambit backed by buckets of big money, KFC is hoping to replicate its founder's recipe for success with the national introduction of Kentucky Grilled Chicken.
· Couple Too Drunk to Notice Baby Was Dying. A Pennsylvania couple will stand trial on child endangerment charges because state police say they were too drunk and high to notice their 2-month-old daughter was dying from sudden infant death syndrome.
· Ohio wants $57 million to
build study highways. Ohio wants to spend $57 million in federal stimulus money on highway projects that won't begin for years, an unusual strategy for money that President Barack Obama said should be used to give the economy an immediate job-creating jolt.
· Small fuel-efficient cars a safety hazzard. Micro cars can give motorists top-notch fuel efficiency at a competitive price, but the insurance industry says they don't fare too well in collisions with larger vehicles. "There are good reasons people buy mini cars. They're more affordable, and they use less gas. But the safety trade-offs are clear from our new tests," said Adrian Lund, the institute's president.
· Undeterred Somali pirates hijack 3 more ships. Undeterred by U.S. and French hostage rescues that killed seven bandits, Somali pirates brazenly hijacked three more ships in the Gulf of Aden, the waterway that's become the focal point of the world's fight against piracy.
· State reverses itself, will seek death in Casey Anthony case. In a dramatic reversal, the Florida state attorney's office announced Monday it will seek the death penalty against Casey Anthony, the 23-year-old woman charged in the death of her 2-year-old daughter Caylee.
· Slain girl may have been raped, police say. A Sunday school teacher accused of killing an 8-year-old neighbor may also have raped the girl, authorities say. Melissa Huckaby is expected to be arraigned today.
· GM recalling 1.5 million cars over fire fears. The possibility of engine fires has prompted General Motors to recall nearly 1.5 million passenger sedans manufactured between 1997 and 2003. The recall covers certain mid- and full-size passenger sedans under GM's Chevrolet, Buick, Oldsmobile and Pontiac brands.
· Nevada woman hits $33 million jackpot at casino. A woman who had planned to spend a quiet Easter at home is $33 million richer after hitting the second largest Megabucks jackpot in history at a Nevada casino.
Monday, April 13, 2009
· Passenger lands plane after pilot dies. It's a nightmarish scenario straight out of the movies: A passenger is forced to land a plane after its pilot becomes incapacitated. But it became a reality for a passenger on board a plane over Florida on Sunday, and for the air traffic controllers who helped him land safely in what the National Air Traffic Controllers' Association called "an Easter miracle."
· Phil Spector is convicted of 2nd-degree murder. Legendary music producer Phil Spector has been found guilty of second-degree murder in the 2003 shooting death of an actress at his home in Alhambra, California. The six men and six women began their deliberations on March 26. Spector now faces 15 years to life in prison.
· Wacky Warnings. Danger! Caution! Alert! It seems like everywhere you turn there’s a new list of things you shouldn't be doing. A Fishing Hook Warns: Harmful If Swallowed; Children's Dimetapp Warns: Be Careful When Driving a Motor Vehicle; and A Hair Dryer Warns: Never Use While Sleeping.
· Congressman escapes injury in Somali mortar attack. Assailants fired mortar shells at Mogadishu airport as a plane carrying a U.S. congressman took off, a police officer said. The plane departed safely, but 19 Somalis from surrounding residential areas were reported injured.
· Mel Gibson's wife files for divorce. Court records show Mel Gibson's wife has filed for divorce after 28 years of marriage. Robyn Gibson filed the petition in Los Angeles, citing irreconcilable differences.
· Obama's Brother Refused UK Entry Over Alleged Sex Assault. The brother of President Obama has been refused a visa to re-enter Britain after being questioned by police over an accusation of attempted sexual assault.
· US captain freed; Somali pirates vow to retaliate. In a daring high-seas rescue, U.S. Navy SEAL snipers killed three Somali pirates and freed the American sea captain who had offered himself as a hostage to save his crew. The operation was a victory for the world's most powerful military but angry pirates vowed Monday to retaliate. Those threats raised fears for the safety of some 230 foreign sailors still held hostage in more than a dozen ships anchored off the coast of lawless Somalia.
· U.S. Weighing Where to Charge Captured Pirate. The Justice Department was considering whether to prosecute a Somali pirate in Washington or New York, U.S. officials said following the rescue of a U.S. hostage and the apprehension of his only surviving captor.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Nefarious [ne·far·i·ous] adj. Infamous by way of being extremely wicked. Wicked in the extreme; abominable; iniquitous; atrociously villainous; execrable; detestably vile.
· Heather Mills vows to clean up the internet. Sir Paul McCartney's former wife Heather Mills has vowed to fight publications and websites who print damaging lies about her - because she doesn't want her daughter to read them as she grows up.
· GM told to prep for bankruptcy filing. The U.S. Treasury Department is directing General Motors to lay the groundwork for a bankruptcy filing by June 1, even though the automaker has publicly stated it could reorganize outside of court.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
· Navy SEALs rescue ship captain unharmed; kill three pirates. The American captain of a cargo ship held hostage by pirates on a lifeboat off the coast of Somalia was rescued today by Navy SEALs. "We saw the captain was in imminent danger," a U.S. official said. The SEALs shot and killed three of his captors, the official said. Capt. Richard Phillips is uninjured and in good condition.
· Pirate: "We never kill people. We are Muslims." Covering their exploits is a near-daily task for reporters in Somalia and foreign correspondents in East Africa. One told a reporter: "We never kill people. We are Muslims. We are marines, coastguards - not pirates."
· Saudi judge upholds 8-year-old's marriage. A Saudi mother is expected to appeal a judge's ruling after he once again refused to let her 8-year-old daughter divorce 47-year-old Sheikh Habib Al-Habib, a relative said.
· Talks Break Down In Pirate Standoff. U.S. talks with pirates holding American ship captain Richard Phillips broke down this weekend, with Somali officials blaming a U.S. insistence that the pirates must be arrested, The New York Times reported.
· US ship, choppers, shadow hostage captain, pirates. U.S. warships and helicopters stalked a lifeboat holding an American sea captain and his four Somali captors Sunday, while his crew briefed FBI agents about how they fought off the pirates who boarded their ship.
· Washington's mayor proposes 'streetlight user fee.' Washington’s mayor, Adrian M. Fenty, has proposed a “streetlight user fee” of $4.25 a month, to be added to electric bills, that would cover the cost of operating the city’s streetlights.
· Israeli Jets Scramble After Delta Flight Hijack Blunder. Israeli fighter jets were scrambled to escort a Delta Air Lines plane flying from New York to Tel Aviv after the pilot activated a hijacking alert by mistake.
· Town rocked by arrest of Sunday school teacher. Police and residents were shocked when the suspect in the killing of an 8-year-old girl found stuffed into a suitcase turned out to be a woman, the mother of the slain girl's best friend. Melissa Huckaby, a Sunday school teacher and granddaughter of a minister, was on suicide watch Saturday at the San Joaquin County Jail.
· Door kicked in, family shot. A 19-year-old woman, her 23-month-old son and a six-year-old boy were killed, and another child is in stable condition, after a pair of gunmen kicked down a door before dawn in a Terrytown apartment and began going room to room randomly shooting the victims, according to police.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
· Hacksaw takes out phones in Silicon Valley. Forget computer viruses and sophisticated cybercrimes. A hacksaw and a few other tools were probably all it took for someone to sever eight fiber-optic cables in Silicon Valley this week, knocking out cell phone, landline and Internet service.
· Pirates hijack another one: an Italian tugboat. An Italian tugboat with 16 crew members sent a distress call to a NATO ship Saturday before it was hijacked by pirates in the Gulf of Aden, the tug's owner said.
· Female Sunday-school teacher arrested in death of California girl. Police have arrested a Sunday-school teacher in the killing of California 8-year-old Sandra Cantu, authorities said today. Melissa Huckaby faces charges of kidnapping and murder. Huckaby lived in the same mobile home park as Sandra's family.
· Clinton Tries to Pay Down Debt by Raffling Off Bill. The secretary of state's presidential campaign is still trying to pay off a steep debt, and has launched a new fundraising pitch urging donors to give money and compete for the chance to win one of three "exclusive prizes." One of those is a day with Bill Clinton.
· Update: Billy Bob Thornton's band cancels Canadian tour. Billy Bob Thornton's band has canceled the rest of its Canadian tour after the actor compared the country's fans to mashed potatoes with no gravy in a testy interview that caused a sensation online.
· US ships block help for pirates holding US captain. Pirates holding a German cargo ship returned to port Saturday after failing to reach a lifeboat containing four pirates and their American hostage, a local journalist told CNN. The ship had set sail to help the pirates holding Capt. Richard Phillips, but turned back because of the U.S. naval presence.
· NASA to unveil space station name on Colbert show. NASA's sense of humor is being put to the test. The US space agency is facing a serious dilemma after a popular television comedian, Stephen Colbert, hijacked an online contest sponsored by NASA to pick a name for a new module on the International Space Station. Colbert's suggestion for a name? His own.
Friday, April 10, 2009
· Ex-Child Actor Sentenced to Death in Yacht Killings. A judge sentenced a onetime child actor to death for murdering an Arizona couple by tying them to an anchor and throwing them overboard from their yacht off Southern California.
· Upadte: Motorist Charged With Murder of MLB Pitcher. A 22-year-old man was charged with three murder counts and drunken driving Friday in the crash that killed Los Angeles Angels rookie pitcher Nick Adenhart and two others.
· Hostage dies as French attack pirates. A French hostage and two pirates died Friday in a rescue operation off Somalia, the French president's office in Paris said. Four hostages, including a child, were freed from the hijacked yacht after almost a week of captivity, Nicolas Sarkozy's office said.
· Burglary Live On The Internet. A Florida woman who used a live Internet video feed to monitor the interior of her home was shocked yesterday when she saw two men burglarizing her residence in real time.
· Harvard Professor Develops Inhalable Chocolate. A Harvard professor has come up with what he call "Le Whif" — inhalable chocolate with zero calories. Each Le Whif dispenser — a box of 24 will cost about $53 — looks like a blend of an asthma inhaler, a tube of lipstick and a shotgun shell.
· Pirate ships converge on US hostage at sea. Escalating a dramatic Indian Ocean standoff, more U.S. warships - as well as pirate reinforcements with an international gallery of hostages - rushed Friday toward the spot where four Somali bandits are holding a U.S. sea captain aboard a drifting lifeboat.
· Captain tried to escape pirates, U.S. official says. The American ship captain being held hostage by pirates on a lifeboat off Somalia tried to escape from his captors by jumping overboard, a U.S. official said today. Richard Phillips was recaptured.
· Pirates put Obama in 21st-century bind. A ragtag band of pirates has put President Barack Obama in a bind: He commands overwhelming firepower in the form of a growing flotilla of U.S. warships, but he doesn't want to use it. Thursday's decision to turn to FBI hostage negotiators showed Obama reaching for all of his limited options in the high-seas hostage drama.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
· Iron Chef Cat Cora a New Mom, But Still Pregnant. TV chef Cat Cora is the proud new mother to baby boy Thatcher Julius Cora, born on April 4. But she's also still pregnant. That's because it was her lesbian partner, Jennifer Cora, who gave birth. Cat, who is also pregnant (both used the same sperm donor), is due in a few months.
· Woman Jumps to Death at Mall, Lands on Shopper. A 17-year-old boy suffered a head wound and was knocked unconscious when a woman jumped to her death off a New York City mall balcony and landed on him.
· Rookie makes first start, then dies in car crash. Los Angeles Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart was among three people killed in a 3-vehicle crash in Fullerton, California, early today, according to a hospital spokesman. Hours earlier, Adenhart, 22, pitched 6 scoreless innings in his first start for the Angels.
· UK's top anti-terror officer resigns after blunder. Britain's top counterterrorism officer resigned Thursday after appearing in front of photographers with clearly visible secret documents about an operation against what Prime Minister Gordon Brown called a "very big terrorist plot."
· Police officers admit to throwing eggs. Three Gainesville police officers received written warnings for traveling through high-crime areas while off duty and harassing people, according to an investigation into the events.
· Next on Obama's plate: an immigration bill. While acknowledging that the recession makes the political battle more difficult, President Barack Obama plans to begin addressing America's immigration system this year, including looking for a path for illegal immigrants to become legal, a senior administration official said Wednesday.
· US warship arrives as pirates' options dwindle. A U.S. destroyer kept watch Thursday in waters where Somali pirates held an American captain in a drifting lifeboat near a cargo ship that was hijacked and later retaken by the crew in an hours-long, high seas drama.
· Chrysler Rolls Out SUV After Government Scolding. The Obama administration issued a scathing rejection of the company's survival plan March 30 and gave it 30 days to secure a merger with another automaker, most likely Italy's Fiat SpA.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
· U.S. Navy warship "on the scene" near Somali pirates. A spokesman for the ship company Maersk, Kevin Speers, tells AP Radio that the nuclear-powered destroyer USS Bainbridge is on the scene. He adds that the lifeboat with the pirates is floating near the Maersk Alabama.
· Recession slows U.S. state income tax refunds. Many U.S. taxpayers are eagerly anticipating a quick influx of cash from their states as they file income tax returns ahead of the April 15 deadline, but for some, the refund check may not be in the mail.
· Calif. hospitals accused of patient dumping reach $1.6M settlement. A $1.6 million settlement has been reached with two Southern California hospitals accused of improperly discharging and dumping psychiatric patients on Skid Row in Los Angeles, the city attorney's office said Wednesday.
· ShamWow: But Wait, There's More... In what promises to be the final installment of the ShamWow Chronicles, on the following pages you will find a selection of police evidence photos memorializing the recent bloody battle between TV pitchman Vince Shlomi and a Miami hooker.
· Update: Pirates hold U.S. ship's skipper, crewman says. The crew of a U.S.-flagged freighter has regained control of the ship from pirates who seized it off Africa, but its captain is being held hostage, the freighter's second officer said Wednesday. Capt. Richard Phillips is being held in the Maersk Alabama's 28-foot lifeboat after the pirates reneged on plans to exchange him for a captured pirate. [developing]
· Police officer, others shot by naked man. According to a police spokesperson, a naked man tried to wrestle the officer's gun away from her. Both the officer and the suspect were shot during the struggle. The officer was shot twice in thigh, and the man was wounded. According to Police Chief Robert White, the man also shot his girlfriend and a neighbor.
· Out-of-wedlock births hit record high. Nearly 40 percent of babies born in the United States in 2007 were delivered by unwed mothers, according to data released last month by the National Center for Health Statistics. The 1.7 million out-of-wedlock births, of 4.3 million total births, marked a more than 25 percent jump from five years before.
· Ship carrying 20 Americans believed hijacked off Somalia. Pirates have attacked a cargo ship with a crew of at least 20 U.S. nationals, according to the company that owns the vessel. It is believed the U.S.-flagged Maersk Alabama was hijacked.
· Groups Spar Over Mass. Transgender 'Bathroom Bill.' Opponents of the measure have deemed it "a bathroom bill," saying it would lead to a breakdown in privacy and public safety in rest rooms, locker rooms, showers and other single-sex facilities. They contend the law would open women's bathrooms to sexual predators.
· Fidel Castro to Congressional Black Caucus members: 'How can we help President Obama?' The aging, ailing, cigar-smoking icon Fidel Castro had three members of Congress visit with him today in Havana, which resulted in the bearded one asking, "How can we help President Obama?"
· Space Capsule Carrying U.S. Billionaire Lands Safely. A Russian spacecraft carrying a crew of three including U.S. billionaire space tourist Charles Simonyi landed safely in Kazakhstan Wednesday, officials said.
· Cyberspies penetrate electrical grid. Cyberspies have penetrated the U.S. electrical grid and left behind software programs that could be used to disrupt the system, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday. The spies came from China, Russia and other countries, and were believed to be on a mission to navigate the U.S. electrical system and its controls.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
· Man decides to clean with gasoline while smoking. A man faces an arson charge after telling authorities he wasn't thinking when he decided to use gasoline for cleaning up his apartment, and then tossed a lit cigarette into a pile of gas-soaked clothes.
· Ted Stevens' conviction set aside. A federal judge today set aside the corruption conviction of former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens. He also initiated criminal contempt proceedings against the government lawyers who prosecuted Stevens.
· VA patient tests HIV-positive after clinic mistake. The Veterans Affairs Department is investigating any link between a patient's positive HIV test and unsterilized equipment that may have exposed thousands of veterans to infectious diseases.
· Military used pigs in blasts to test armor. Military researchers have dressed live pigs in body armor and strapped them into Humvee simulators that were then blown up with explosives to study the link between roadside bomb blasts and brain injury. [D]
· Cover Girl Michelle Obama Doesn't Always Deliver. Newsweek's Dec. 1 cover story on "The Meaning of Michelle," using a black-and-white photo, only sold 90,000 copies on newsstands, 15% below its average for the second half of last year. More's October issue featuring a cover story on "Michelle Obama at 44" sold just 154,000 copies on newsstands, 23% below the average.
· GM and Segway unveil new two-wheeled urban vehicle. A solution to the world's urban transportation problems could lie in two wheels not four, according to executives for General Motors Corp. and Segway Inc. The companies announced Tuesday that they are working together to develop a two-wheeled, two-seat electric vehicle designed to be a fast, safe, inexpensive and clean alternative to traditional cars.
· Mexico Nabs U.S. Man Accused of Raping 19 Women. A Texas man has been arrested for allegedly raping 19 women across the border in the northern Mexican city of Ciudad Juarez, authorities said Monday.
· Update: F-16s chase stolen plane to Missouri. The chase began with a stolen plane from a Canadian flight school, meandered through three states with U.S. fighter jets hot on the trail and forced the evacuation of the state Capitol in Wisconsin.
· Communities print their own currency to keep cash flowing. A small but growing number of cash-strapped communities are printing their own money. Borrowing from a Depression-era idea, they are aiming to help consumers make ends meet and support struggling local businesses.
Monday, April 6, 2009
· Stolen Cessna Pursued by Jet Fighters Lands on Highway. A Cessna stolen from a Canadian flight school landed on a Missouri highway late today, after being pursued for hours across the Midwest by fighter jets ready to shoot it down if it was determined to be a threat.
· Woman with beer can in hand starts brawl at wake. Sheriff's deputies said a Texas woman started a brawl at a wake in Arkansas when she arrived with a beer can in her hand. The woman, 52, faces a third-degree domestic battery charges, as does another woman, 46, over the March 29 fight. Deputies said the first woman arrived at the Christies Chapel Church with a beer can in hand and that she refused to leave. [D]
· BBC Sorry After Jockey's Teeth Mocked On Air. The BBC has apologized after presenter Clare Balding made fun of Grand National winning jockey Liam Treadwell's teeth on air. In a post-race interview, Balding asked the jockey to show his teeth - telling him he could now afford to "get them done" after winning the biggest race of his life. [D]
· Employee flips, damages borrowed Ferrari. The California Highway Patrol said a 23-year-old woman driving an expensive Ferrari owned by her boss flipped it after taking a curve too fast, causing an estimated $125,000 in damage.
· Tearful Allen Stanford Expects Indictment in Two Weeks. Flamboyant financier 'Sir' Allen Stanford expects to be indicted by a federal grand jury in the next two weeks, he told ABC News in an interview in which he cried, denied wrongdoing and threatened to punch his questioner in the mouth.
· Madoff Investor Charged With Fraud New York's attorney general has filed civil fraud charges against hedge fund manager J. Ezra Merkin who funneled billions of dollars in client money to Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff. J. Ezra Merkin is the former chairman of the financing arm of General Motors.
· Spitzer talks: I didn't sleep with hookers often. Disgraced former Gov. Eliot Spitzer this morning said the hooker habit that drove him from office was not frequent and "not long in the grand context of my life."
· Blogger claims police search of home was a threat. Jeff Pataky, a former software sales and marketing executive who now focuses his energy shoveling content on www.badphoenixcops.com, said he believes his online criticism of the department - along with past criticisms of police investigations - led officers to serve a search warrant at his home last week.
· Power Outage Dangles Six Flags Visitors. Six Flags Over Texas reopened Sunday, one day after the theme park shut down because of a power outage that left thrill seekers helplessly stranded on rides.
· Italy: More than 70 dead, 1,500 injured in quake. A powerful earthquake in mountainous central Italy knocked down whole blocks of buildings early Monday as residents slept, killing more than 70 people in the country's deadliest quake in nearly three decades, officials said. Tens of thousands were homeless and 1,500 were injured.
· Australian library finds copy of Schindler's list. Australian researchers sifting papers belonging to the author of "Schindler's List" discovered a yellowing roll of 801 men saved from the Holocaust by the German industrialist — the very copy the writer used to bring the story to the world's attention, a curator said Monday.
· Justice Dept under microscope after Stevens trial. The bungled trial of former GOP Sen. Ted Stevens tainted more than just the Justice Department. It probably tipped the balance of a close election, and the fallout from that is far from over. The FBI has 2,500 pending corruption investigations across the country, and whether the targets are lawmakers or suspected crooked government inspectors, prosecutors may be more cautious in bringing charges after the Stevens debacle.
· Highway Deaths Drop to Lowest Levels Since 1960s. Less money in the pockets of Americans means fewer highway deaths. As the economy slid deeper into recession and gas prices reached $4 a gallon last year, the number of people killed in auto accidents hit its lowest level in five decades.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
· Farrah Fawcett reportedly unconscious, hospitalized in LA. Farrah Fawcett is in an LA hospital, reportedly unconscious, and has been there for a few days. Farrah has been battling cancer for three years.
· Son of Farrah Fawcett arrested in LA on drug charge. Los Angeles police say the 24-year-old son of actors Ryan O'Neal and Farrah Fawcett has been arrested on a drug charge just months after he and his father were charged with drug possession.
· Urinating dog call resulted in 3 officers' deaths. Three Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, police officers were shot to death while responding to a 911 call of a domestic argument triggered by a urinating dog, according to a criminal complaint.
· NYC fried chicken joints under fire for Obama name. Two New York City fried chicken restaurants in predominantly black neighborhoods are under fire for putting President Barack Obama's name on their signs. "People from the community were calling me and saying they were outraged by this racist connection to Barack Obama and fried chicken," Councilman Charles Barron said.
· Murder of 5 children shocks Wash. trailer park. A quiet mobile home park nestled among towering evergreens reeled Sunday in the aftermath of an unthinkable crime: five children slain in their own home, apparently by their father, who took his own life with a gunshot miles away.
· 'You Think You Can Dance' Choreographer Arrested. Los Angeles police have arrested a choreographer featured on the FOX television show "So You Think You Can Dance" on suspicion of sexually assaulting four of his dance students.
· Bristol Palin's baby daddy tells all, Sarah bites back. Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin went on the attack Saturday, after Levi Johnston, the baby daddy of her first grandchild, revealed all sorts of family secrets on an episode of "The Tyra Banks Show" to be aired Monday.
· Sarah Palin's sister-in-law arrested for robbery. Sarah Palin's sister-in-law was arrested for burglary in Alaska - and allegedly brought her 4-year-old along for the heist. Diana Palin was arrested on Thursday for allegedly burglarizing a house. Not once, but twice in a matter of days.
· Egypt pressured to end underground organ trade. The poverty of Cairo's slums forced a young couple to sell nearly everything they had. When that wasn't enough, each of them sold a kidney. The clandestine predawn operation in a small private hospital ended with the husband and wife being dumped semiconscious into taxis - the payment for their kidneys tucked into their clothes, they say.
· Madonna leaves Malawi after adoption setback. Madonna left Malawi on her private jet Sunday after being rebuffed in an attempt to adopt a second child from the poor African nation, air traffic control officials said.
Saturday, April 4, 2009
· 'Blues Brothers' Actor Killed, Suspect Charged. A man police say told them he stole a car and believed the owner was dead is charged with killing a Texas actor. Austin police Friday identified the victim as 67-year-old Lou Perryman. Perryman appeared in "The Blues Brothers," "Boys Don't Cry" and "When Zachary Beaver Came to Town."
· Detroit School Worker Tackles Teen With Shotgun. A social worker at a high school in Detroit is being lauded as a hero after he stopped a 17-year-old boy who allegedly was carrying a sawed-off shotgun through a metal detector and wrestled the boy to the ground.
· Woman gets 6 years for fatal texting crash. A woman who crashed into a line of stopped vehicles while text-messaging on her cell phone has been sentenced to six years in a California prison for killing a woman in one of the vehicles. The 49-year-old woman paid several bills by cell phone in the moments before the crash.
· Police official: 3 officers killed in Pa. shooting. A man opened fire on officers during a domestic disturbance call Saturday morning, killing three of them, a police official said. Friends said he feared the Obama administration was poised to ban guns.
· NY gunman angry over poor English skills, job loss. The man who police say killed 13 people in a shooting rampage inside an immigrant community center was depressed and angry over losing his job and about his poor English skills, the Binghamton mayor and police said Saturday.
· U.S to Lift Some Cuba Travel Curbs. President Barack Obama plans to lift longstanding U.S. restrictions on Cuba, a senior administration official said, allowing Cuban-Americans to visit families there as often as they like and to send them unlimited funds.
· Gang of villagers chases away Google car. Google's ambitious plan to offer a 3-D street level view of communities across three continents hit a snag when angry residents of a UK village blocked the search engine's camera car from photographing their homes.
· Fannie, Freddie To Pay $210M In Bonuses. Mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac plan to pay more than $210 million in bonuses through next year to give workers the incentive to stay in their jobs at the government-controlled companies.
· Officer charged with harassing Delaware Governor. The Delaware Department of Correction says a correctional officer charged with sending harassing e-mails to the governor has been placed on leave with pay.
· Berlusconi in new gaffe at NATO summit. Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi made a fresh faux pas on Saturday, talking on his mobile instead of posing for a group photo with NATO's other 27 leaders on a bridge spanning the Rhine.
Friday, April 3, 2009
· Update: Massacre at immigration center in New York. A gunman opened fire on a room where immigrants were taking a citizenship exam in downtown Binghamton on Friday, killing as many as 13 people before committing suicide. [Developing]
· Girl posing as construction worker arrested for immigrant-smuggling. A 16-year-old girl posing as a construction worker was arrested Thursday morning after Border Patrol agents discovered 13 illegal immigrants crammed into the pickup she was driving, authorities said.
· 'America's Toughest Sheriff' Snubbed by House. Two House Judiciary subcommittees convened Thursday to examine allegations of unconstitutional immigration enforcement tactics -- and took target practice at Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Arizona, whose controversial methods have been called racist by activists and Democratic lawmakers.
· Subway rape victim comes forward after suit tossed against MTA workers. A young woman brutally raped in a Queens subway station says her heart was broken when a judge threw out her suit against two transit workers who ignored her cries for help.
· CDC: Rocket fuel chemical found in baby formula. Traces of a chemical used in rocket fuel were found in samples of powdered baby formula, and could exceed what's considered a safe dose for adults if mixed with water also contaminated with the ingredient, a government study has found.
· Woman divorces husband for cleaning too much. A German woman has divorced her husband because she was fed up with him cleaning all the time. German media reported the wife got through 15 years of marriage putting up with the man's penchant for doing household chores, tidying up and rearranging the furniture.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
· Ward Churchill Wins Civil Suit Against CU. Controversial professor Ward Churchill has won his wrongful termination lawsuit against the University of Colorado. After a day and a half of deliberations, six jurors on Thursday sided with Churchill, but only awarded him $1 in damages.
· Mom Drugged Daughter, 13, to Get Her Pregnant. Police say a western Pennsylvania mother drugged her 13-year-old daughter so her boyfriend could get the girl pregnant. Uniontown police say 32-year-old Shana Brown is no longer able to have children, but wanted a baby with her boyfriend.
· Blagojevich indicted on 16 more felony charges. Impeached former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, already facing conspiracy and fraud charges, was indicted on 16 additional felony counts by a federal grand jury today.
· English-Only Driver's Tests Proposed in Georgia. Georgia would require that new drivers take a written license test in English under a bill being considered by state lawmakers. Georgia's current written test is offered in 14 other languages.
· Party Shooting Said To Stem From Lack Of Women. Three teenagers have been charged in a shooting that left four guests wounded at a party in Lakeville, in a dispute allegedly over a lack of women at the party.
· Car Seat Thrown Through Octomom's Van Window. Someone has thrown a baby's car seat through the rear window of octuplet mother Nadya Suleman's minivan. Police in La Habra, Calif., say the octuplets' nannies saw the seat lodged in the shattered window.
· Suspect's estranged wife: 'I wish it had been me.' The estranged wife of a man accused of fatally shooting eight people at the Carthage nursing home where she works said she wishes she had been the victim of her husband's alleged rampage.
· Angry wife jailed for throwing scissors at husband. An angry housewife has been jailed without bond for throwing a pair of scissors at her husband Tuesday night, the Hernando County Sheriff's Office said today.
· Colorado Man Coughs Up Nail Stuck in Nose 30 Years. A Colorado man went to the doctor’s office expecting a routine MRI, but ended up leaving with the nail that had been stuck in his nose for possibly 30 years.
· $9 a pack: Time to quit? Smoke 'em if you can afford 'em. And at $9 a pack and up, many smokers were gasping at the thought of coughing up that kind of cash on Wednesday, as the largest federal cigarette tax hike in history went into effect.
· N. Korea Threatens to Retaliate With 'Thunderbolt of Fire' North Korea's military on Thursday threatened immediate retaliation if "even the slightest effort" is made to intercept a long-range rocket it began fueling and plans to launch in the next few days.
· South Carolina Exhumes Body Believed to Be Cut to Fit in Coffin. South Carolina authorities on Tuesday exhumed the body of a man long rumored to have had his legs cut to fit into a coffin, and a coroner said what officials discovered has brought a criminal investigation.
· GM asks U.S. gov't for $2.6 billion to build hybrids. General Motors has asked for $2.6 billion of low interest government loans to support the development of three new hybrid vehicles, according to a business plan update released on Wednesday.
· Barney Frank says GOP suffers from a psychological disorder. House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank accused the GOP of attacking him for trying to fix the flawed stimulus, saying Republicans’ criticism was part “of a psychological disorder I am not equipped to diagnose.”
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
· Obama's Budget Resurrects Death Tax. President Obama's budget keeps the estate tax at its 2009 level, which means the government gets 45 percent of a dead person's estate valued over $3.5 million dollars. President Bush's tax cuts would have eliminated estate taxes next year.
· Madoff 'feeder fund' charged with fraud. Massachusetts' top securities regulator accused a major feeder fund for Bernard Madoff's fraudulent investment scheme of misrepresenting its lack of knowledge about Madoff's operations.
· Airport body scans reveal all. New airport security scanners could become a popular alternative to body searches, but have also prompted some privacy concerns. Whole-body imaging technologies can see through clothing to reveal a person's silhouette and the outlines of underwear.
· Obama's illegal aunt can stay at least another year. President Barack Obama's aunt will be allowed to remain in the United States until at least next year as she awaits a chance to make her case before an immigration judge in her bid for asylum from her native Kenya.
· Justice case against former Sen. Ted Stevens dropped. The Justice Department has dropped its case against former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens, a department source told CNN on Wednesday. Stevens, 85, was convicted in October on seven counts of lying on mandatory financial disclosure forms.
· Large Taxpayer-Paid Bonuses a Boon — in Congress. While Congress has been flaying companies for giving out bonuses while on the government dole, lawmakers have a longstanding tradition of rewarding their own employees with extra cash - also courtesy of taxpayers.
· Madonna's African adoptions part of growing trend. Madonna's efforts to adopt two youngsters from Malawi have drawn the paparazzi. But she isn't alone: Westerners are increasingly seeking to bring home children from Africa as traditional sources like China and Russia cut back on adoptions by foreigners.
· Grandma who warned of 'thrillseeking' arrested for driving 100 mph. Marion County deputies arrested a woman for driving more than 100 miles per hour while her grandson was in the car. Sandra Nardi, 53, told the officer she was showing her 10-year-old grandson how not to drive dangerously, and to never try to drive the way she was.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Voracity; Voracious [vo·ra·cious] adj. Consuming or eager to consume great amounts of food; ravenous. 2. Having or marked by an insatiable appetite for an activity or pursuit; greedy: "A voracious reader."
· Obama Orders Chevrolet and Dodge Out Of NASCAR. In a move sure to spark outrage, the White House announced today that GM and Chrysler must cease participation in NASCAR at the end of the 2009 season if they hope to receive any additional financial aid from the government. [Car & Driver humor]
· Financial Rescue Nears GDP as Government Pledges Top $12.8 Trillion. The U.S. government and the Federal Reserve have spent, lent or committed $12.8 trillion, an amount that approaches the value of everything produced in the country last year, to stem the longest recession since the 1930s.
· Hundreds of Iowans thrown out of public hearing. More than 500 people who are upset with a plan to change Iowa's tax laws were cleared from a hearing tonight at the Iowa House after they interrupted multiple times.
· April Fools' computer worm surfaces. Experts watched warily Wednesday as a worm infecting millions of computers activated itself as predicted on April 1. However fears the Conficker.c worm would cause chaos have so far proved unfounded, with no reports of major problems.
· Pardon sought for first black heavyweight champ. Sen. John McCain wants a presidential pardon for Jack Johnson, who became the nation's first black heavyweight boxing champion 100 years before Barack Obama became its first black president. McCain feels Johnson was wronged by a 1913 conviction of violating the Mann Act by having a consensual relationship with a white woman.
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
· HHS nominee Kathleen Sebelius finds "unintentional tax errors." Health and Human Services nominee Kathleen Sebelius has corrected three years worth of tax returns after finding "unintentional errors." It's the latest tax issue to hit an Obama administration nominee. His first HHS nominee withdrew because of major tax problems.
· Evicted homeowner who shot herself dies. Addie Polk, who became the national face of the foreclosure crisis last fall when she shot herself during an eviction, was a quiet woman who never asked for help.
· White House Press Kit: Britain 'slightly smaller than Oregon.' During president Obama's European tour, here's what the White House is telling American reporters - and by extension the American people - about Britain. It's laid out in an inch-thick "press kit", with the Seal of the President of the United States emblazoned on the cover: The United Kingdom, we are told, is "slightly smaller than Oregon."
· Obama's aunt becomes symbol in immigration debate. Barack Obama's Kenyan aunt lost her bid for asylum more than four years ago, and a judge ordered her deported. Instead, Zeituni Onyango stayed, living for years in public housing. Now, Onyango's request is being reconsidered under a little-used provision in U.S. immigration rules that allows denied asylum claims to be reheard if applicants can show that something has changed to make them eligible. Such as the ascension of her nephew to the presidency.
· Update: Man decapitates 5-year-old sister in front of officer. By the time the police officer kicked the door in, it was too late. Kerby Revelus was holding his 5-year-old sister, Bianca, and while the officer watched, he dragged a kitchen knife across her throat with such fury that he decapitated her.
· No murder charges if son 'resurrected.' A Baltimore mother accused of being part of a cult pleaded guilty Monday to starving her baby to death. Under a plea agreement, Ria Ramkissoon would get 20 years behind bars, but also included that the murder charges against her be dropped if her son was resurrected.
· Former Alabama judge indicted on inmate sex charges. A former south Alabama judge is accused of checking male inmates out of jail and forcing them to engage in sexual activity including paddling, according to officials and court documents.
· Man driving motorized bar stool arrested for DUI. Ohio cops arrested a man for drunk driving on a motorized bar stool. According to police, Kile Wygle, 28, crashed his bar stool near his Newark home earlier this month and called 911 due to his injuries.
· Teacher charged with felonies in deaths of two cats. Investigators said the Congress Middle School teacher's cats clawed up the apartment in a frantic search for food as they starved for up to a month before they died. The corpses then rotted in the filthy apartment about a month before an apartment manager found them.
· FDA says to avoid pistachios amid salmonella scare. In another food scare sure to rattle consumers who watched the national salmonella outbreak in peanuts unfold, federal food officials are now warning people not to eat any food containing pistachios, which could carry contamination from the same bacteria.
· Ford to cover car payments if buyer loses job. Ford Motor Co. said Tuesday it is offering a payment protection plan to help reassure consumers who may be putting off buying a new car because of worries about losing their job.
· 15 workers fired for accessing octomom's file. Fifteen hospital workers have been fired and another eight disciplined for looking at medical records of octuplet mother Nadya Suleman without permission, hospital officials said Monday.
· JetBlue Employee Gets Locked in Baggage Compartment on New York to Boston Flight. JetBlue says it is investigating how one of its employees wound up in the cargo bin for a New York to Boston flight.
· Unpaid bills? Good luck starting future laptops. LM Ericsson (ERIC) AB, the Swedish company that makes many of the modems that go into laptops, announced Tuesday that its new modem will deal with the issue of unpaid wireless access bills by including a feature that's virtually a wireless repo man. If the carrier has the stomach to do so, it can send a signal that completely disables the computer, making it impossible to turn on.
Monday, March 30, 2009
· Ousted GM CEO could get $20M package. General Motors' outgoing chief executive Rick Wagoner is eligible to receive more than $20 million in his retirement package, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
· GM is now Government Motors? President Obama announced today that if you buy a car from Chrysler or General Motors, you will be able to get your car serviced and repaired, just like always. "Your warranty will be safe," Obama said. "Starting today, the United States government will stand behind your warranty."
· Mass. man kills sisters on 5-year-old's birthday. A man on a rampage fatally stabbed his 17-year-old sister, decapitated his 5-year-old sister during her birthday party and then headed toward his 9-year-old sister before officers shot him amid what their chief described as "a killing field."
· Fox to introduce new dating show for fat people. Fox is teaming with "The Bachelor" producer Mike Fleiss for a new dating-competition series that casts "average-looking" people. The series, titled “More to Love,” is billed as the first “dating show for the rest of us,” throwing open its doors to overweight contestants.
· White House questions viability of GM, Chrysler. President Barack Obama is sending a blunt message to Detroit automakers: To survive - and win more government help - they must remake themselves top to bottom. Driving home the point, the White House ousted the General Motors chairman as it rejected GM and Chrysler's restructuring plans. Neither GM nor Chrysler submitted acceptable plans to receive additional federal bailout money.
· Update: Eight killed in nursing home shooting. A man shot and killed seven patients and a nurse at a Carthage, North Carolina, nursing home Sunday before being wounded during a shootout with a police officer, authorities said. Three other people, including the police officer and a visitor to the nursing home, were wounded in the attack. The slain patients ranged in age from 78 to 98.
· Police: Gunman's ex-wife worked at nursing home. Police are looking into whether a gunman accused of killing eight people in a North Carolina nursing home may have targeted the facility because his estranged wife worked there.
· NY Budget Plan Jammed Packed With Higher Taxes. New Yorkers, both rich and not so rich, will soon be digging deeper into their pockets to close the huge state budget gap. The new spending plan expected to be adopted this week is jammed pack with higher taxes and fees.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
· GM CEO Wagoner to step down at White House request. General Motors Chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner will step down immediately at the request of the White House, administration officials said Sunday. The news comes as President Barack Obama prepares to unveil additional restructuring efforts designed to save the domestic auto industry.
· 'Dumbest criminal' nabbed in cop convention holdup. A retired police chief said he was robbed by "probably the dumbest criminal in Pennsylvania," at a police officers' convention on Friday morning. John Comparetto said as he came out of a stall in the men's room, a man pointed a gun in his face and demanded money. There were 300 narcotics officers from Pennsylvania and Ohio at the gathering.
· Bishop dogged by abuse allegations dies. Bishop Earl Paulk, a charismatic preacher brought down by a series of sex scandals, has died. He was 81. His success as a preacher was overshadowed time and again by allegations of sexual impropriety.
· Wife sets up teacher in drug-gun case; ex-boyfriend gets prison. The wife of a Sunny Hills High School teacher admitted today that she conspired with a former boyfriend to plant a shotgun and drugs in her husband's Jeep Cherokee to get him arrested.
· Obama adds AIG director to his tax task force. Barack Obama’s new working group on taxes has an unlikely member: a current board member of American International Group Inc. AIG has been under fire from the Obama and congressional leaders in both parties for doling out $165 million in bonuses to executives after accepting $173 billion in government bailout funds.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
· Lawyer stabbed 38 times; husband held. Slain attorney Chiquita Tate was such a believer in the legal system that she had a tattoo of Lady Justice on her back. But Tate could not save herself. Her body was found in her law office with 38 stab wounds. Her husband of just more than a year is charged in her killing.
· Embarrassing Gaffe Ends Search for 'Phantom Killer.' German investigators' search for a mysterious suspected killer has ended with an embarrassing discovery: identical DNA traces common to dozens of crime scenes stemmed from contaminated cotton swabs.