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National News

  • Twitter may notify users exposed to Russian propaganda during 2016 election

    By Dustin Volz WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Twitter may notify users whether they were exposed to content generated by a suspected Russian propaganda service, a company executive told U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday. The social media company is "working to identify and inform individually" its users who saw tweets during the 2016 U.S. presidential election produced by accounts tied to the Kremlin-linked Internet Research Army, Carlos Monje, Twitter's director of public policy, told the U.S. Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. A Twitter spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment about plans to notify its users.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 12:43:16 -0500
  • Republican lobbyist tied to controversial causes attacked in Virginia

    A Republican lobbyist best known for fueling a conspiracy theory about the death of a Democratic National Committee staffer was attacked with pepper spray outside his home in a Washington suburb, police and his publicist said on Wednesday. Jack Burkman, who also hosts the "Behind the Curtain" show on conservative Radio America, was assaulted on Tuesday night by a man in a dark-colored sports utility vehicle parked in the driveway of the lobbyist's Arlington, Virginia, home, according to a police crime report.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 12:24:38 -0500
  • Flights canceled, schools closed across snowy U.S. South

    A bitter winter storm gripped much of the South on Wednesday, prompting schools to close and causing thousands of flight delays and cancellations as snow, ice and record-breaking cold hit the region. The storm led to a least one death when a vehicle in Austin, Texas, plunged more than 30 feet off a frozen overpass late on Tuesday, killing a man in his 40s, Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Service said on its Twitter feed. Winter weather advisories were in effect from the Northeast to the Mid-Atlantic states and Southeast, as well as over the central Gulf Coast of Texas, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 11:26:42 -0500
  • Fight over Indonesian immigrants back in U.S. court

    Lawyers for 51 Indonesians living illegally in New Hampshire are due in court on Wednesday to urge a federal judge to grant an injunction blocking U.S. immigration officials from moving forward with efforts to deport them. The case affects a group of Indonesian Christians who fled that country during violence two decades ago and had been living openly for years under an informal deal with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials. The Indonesians fear discrimination or violence for their religion and Chinese ancestry if they are forced to return to the world's largest majority-Muslim nation.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 10:15:21 -0500
  • Strike averted at New York's main fruit and vegetable market

    A work stoppage at a market that supplies much of New York City's fresh fruit and vegetables was averted early on Wednesday when negotiators tentatively reached a new pay deal, the labor union and merchants' association said. Employees at the sprawling Hunts Point Terminal Produce Market in the city's Bronx borough had been prepared to go on strike for the first time since 1986 if there was no agreement before the previous contract expired at midnight. The agreement reached overnight covers 1,100 warehouse workers, drivers and other employees belonging to the Teamsters Local 202 union.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 10:02:52 -0500
  • Majority of U.S. National Park Service board resigns, saying it was ignored

    Most members of a U.S. National Park Service advisory board, appointed while Barack Obama was president, have resigned after saying they were ignored by President Donald Trump's administration, the panel chairman said on Tuesday. The National Park System Advisory Board, whose creation was authorized by the U.S. Congress in 1935, is tasked with advising on matters such as the designation of historic and natural landmarks. Seven of the panel's 10 members have submitted their resignations, Tony Knowles, who chaired the panel and was among those quitting, said by telephone.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 04:33:33 -0500
  • Nine charged over fraternity pledge's death at Florida State University

    The nine men, who are between the ages of 20 and 22, were charged with college hazing causing injury or death in Leon County after a two-month investigation into the death of Andrew Coffey, the Tallahassee Police Department said in a statement. “This collaborative investigation was critical to finding answers for Andrew Coffey’s family and our community. Coffey died Nov. 3 after attending "Big Brother Night" at the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity, where he was a pledge.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 02:27:37 -0500
  • Aliens, apocalypse, lightning? ... No, just a meteor rocking Michigan

    (Reuters) - A bright meteor briefly swept across the sky over parts of the U.S. Midwest and Canada on Tuesday, weather and geology agencies said, and then caused a powerful explosion that rattled homes and onlookers. The meteor was seen across the region in places such as Ohio, Michigan and Ontario at about 8 p.m. local time and registered a 2.0 magnitude tremor about 4 miles (7 km) east of Saint Clair Shores in Eastern Michigan, the United States Geological Survey said on its website. The National Weather Service (NWS) confirmed it was not a meteorological event but more likely a meteor.

    Wed, 17 Jan 2018 01:09:52 -0500
  • Ex-U.S. Navy officers face negligent homicide charges over ship collisions

    Filing charges against the officers marks the Navy's latest effort to address the problems that led to collisions involving its warships in Asia, in which 17 sailors were killed. The Navy has already dismissed several senior officers, including the commander of the Seventh Fleet, as a result of the collisions. The commanding officer of the USS John S. McCain guided missile destroyer, which collided with a merchant ship near Singapore in August, faces charges of dereliction of duty, hazarding a vessel and negligent homicide, the statement said.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 21:24:47 -0500
  • House Republicans mull funding extension; 'Dreamer' deal not set

    By Richard Cowan and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) - House Republicans considered on Tuesday a stopgap bill to fund the U.S. government through Feb. 16 to avert a shutdown, but the measure would not include Democrats' demands for protections for young people brought to the United States illegally as children. Partisan finger-pointing over immigration policy on Tuesday left Congress and the White House stumbling closer to a possible federal government shutdown by the end of the week. Republicans who control Congress are expected to try to push another stopgap funding bill and get it to President Donald Trump's desk before a midnight Friday deadline when existing money for federal agencies expires.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 21:18:37 -0500
  • Police still baffled by discovery of 13 starved, abused siblings

    By Alan Devall and Bob Mezan PERRIS, Calif. (Reuters) - Police said on Tuesday they were still seeking answers after finding 13 siblings starving in their parents' squalid Southern California home, some of them chained to beds under "horrific" conditions in an otherwise ordinary suburb. "I wish I could come to you today with information that would explain why this happened," said Captain Greg Fellows of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department. "But we do need to acknowledge the courage of the young girl who escaped from that residence to bring attention so they could get the help they so needed." The parents, 57-year-old David Allen Turpin and Louise Anna Turpin, 49, were arrested at their darkened, foul-smelling house after the girl's 12 siblings were found there.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 21:11:43 -0500
  • California parents accused of starving, shackling children tried to seem normal

    David Turpin, a 57-year-old floppy-haired engineer, and his wife Louise, smiled in the pictures and shared a kiss, laughing next to Tinkerbell in one and renewing their marriage vows in Las Vegas in another. "We always thought she was living the perfect life," Louise Turpin's sister, Teresa Robinette, told NBC News from Knoxville, Tennessee.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 20:53:56 -0500
  • U.S. judge excludes 70,000 women from Sterling Jewelers sex bias lawsuit

    A U.S. judge on Tuesday overturned an arbitrator's ruling allowing about 70,000 women to take part in a nationwide sex discrimination case against Sterling Jewelers Inc even though they had not opted to join. U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan ruled that only women who had opted to join the case against Sterling under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act when it was before the arbitrator could stay in the case. David Bouffard, a spokesman for Sterling, said Rakoff's order left 254 women in the Title VII case.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 19:46:42 -0500
  • U.S. House panel to hold hearing on emergency alerts after Hawaii error

    A U.S. House of Representatives panel said on Tuesday it planned a hearing to review a false missile alert sent in Hawaii over the weekend that stirred panic and anger in the Pacific island state. The House Energy and Commerce Committee said in a statement that the hearing by one of its subcommittees would discuss safety communications and receive an update from the Federal Communications Commission "on its investigation into the recent false emergency alert event in Hawaii." Authorities blamed human error on the false alarm in Hawaii that was not corrected for 38 minutes. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said on Sunday that Hawaii apparently did not have adequate safeguards in place and that government officials must work to prevent future incidents.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 19:45:17 -0500
  • 'Chelsea bomber' tried to radicalize fellow inmates, U.S. prosecutors say

    The New Jersey man found guilty last year of planting two homemade bombs in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, one of which wounded 30 people, has tried to radicalize fellow inmates with Islamic State and al Qaeda propaganda, U.S. prosecutors said on Tuesday. Ahmad Khan Rahimi, 29, faces a mandatory life sentence under federal law after being convicted in October of eight counts, including using a weapon of mass destruction and bombing a public place. Prosecutors said in a filing in Manhattan federal court that since his conviction, Rahimi had distributed "terrorist propaganda" to other inmates at Manhattan's Metropolitan Correctional Center.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 19:27:14 -0500
  • Pay dispute at New York's main produce market could lead to strike

    Workers at the market that supplies New York City with much of its fresh fruits and vegetables were prepared to go on strike as early as Wednesday for the first time since 1986 if negotiators failed to reach a pay deal before a contract expires at midnight, their union said. Employers at the sprawling Hunts Point Terminal Produce Market said they were confident of an agreement, but the president of the union said he believed a strike was more likely than not after the current contract expires. “I'm not very optimistic that we’re going to get a settlement, let’s put it that way," Dan Kane, president of Teamsters union Local 202, which represents the workers, said on Tuesday.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 19:25:44 -0500
  • Second U.S. winter storm forces hundreds of flight cancellations

    By Alana Wise NEW YORK (Reuters) - A second winter storm in as many weeks is causing hundreds of flight cancellations across the United States, airlines reported on Tuesday, potentially dealing a further blow to carriers' first quarter outlooks. As the storm sweeps across southeast Texas and up the East Coast dumping snow, sleet and freezing rain, airlines have already canceled flights into Wednesday in anticipation of difficult conditions. American Airlines , the world's largest airline by passenger traffic, had canceled some 270 flights between Tuesday and Wednesday as a result of the storm, it said.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:51:01 -0500
  • U.S. government shutdown looms amid immigration battle

    (Note language that may offend some readers) By Richard Cowan and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Partisan finger-pointing over immigration policy on Tuesday left the U.S. Congress and the White House stumbling closer to a possible federal government shutdown by the end of the week, although Wall Street held out hopes for a deal to prevent that. Republicans who control Congress are expected to try to push another stopgap funding bill and get it to President Donald Trump's desk before Friday's midnight deadline. Many Democrats might withhold their support unless immigration policy is addressed.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:50:25 -0500
  • Victim of ex-USA gymnastics doctor says abuse led to dad's suicide

    By Brendan McDermid LANSING, Mich. (Reuters) - One of the victims of USA Gymnastics team physician Larry Nassar, who pleaded guilty to molesting dozens of girls, on Tuesday blamed the disgraced doctor for her father's suicide. Kyle Stephens, pausing to compose herself during Nassar's sentencing hearing in a courtroom in Lansing, Michigan, said the doctor, a family friend, began molesting her when she was 6 years old and her parents did not believe her when she told them. Prosecutors are seeking a life sentence for the 54-year-old Nassar, who served as the USA Gymnastics physician through four Olympic Games.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:33:56 -0500
  • Ex-CIA officer arrested for retaining classified information

    By Sarah N. Lynch WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A former Central Intelligence Agency officer was arrested at a U.S. airport on Monday night in connection with charges that he illegally retained highly classified information, the U.S. Justice Department said Tuesday. Jerry Chun Shing Lee, a U.S. citizen who now lives in Hong Kong, used to maintain a top secret clearance and began working for the CIA in 1994. The Justice Department said that in 2012, FBI agents searched his hotel rooms during trips to Virginia and Hawaii.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:01:08 -0500
  • U.S. Hispanic Caucus head rejects Senate 'Dreamer' immigration deal

    U.S. Democratic Representative Michelle Lujan Grisham, head of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, expressed opposition on Tuesday to a bipartisan Senate immigration deal set to be unveiled on Wednesday. Lujan Grisham has thrown her weight behind a bipartisan bill being introduced in the House of Representatives that is narrower than the Senate bill and would not address all the immigration issues being sought by the White House.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 17:27:51 -0500
  • Starved California siblings treated after rescue from 'horrific' home news

    David Allen Turpin, 57, and Louise Anna Turpin, 49 - had subjected their children to abuse behind the doors of their darkened, foul-smelling home, Captain Greg Fellows of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department said. The couple, who three times had traveled to Las Vegas to renew their wedding vows at an Elvis chapel, was arrested on Sunday. Authorities were alerted after one of the children, an emaciated, 17-year-old girl, called police after escaping through a window of the house in Perris, a city about 70 miles (115 km) east of Los Angeles.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 17:24:40 -0500
  • Former Fiat Chrysler exec expected to plead guilty in payments probe: sources

    Former Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV vice president Alphons Iacobelli is expected to plead guilty in connection with a U.S. Justice Department investigation into allegations he made at least $1.2 million in improper payments to a former union vice president and his wife, two people briefed on the matter said on Tuesday. Iacobelli, a former Fiat Chrysler vice president of employee relations, was charged in July in U.S. District Court in Detroit with taking part in a conspiracy to pay prohibited money and gifts to United Auto Workers union officials.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:58:52 -0500
  • Wage dispute at NY City's main produce market could lead to strike

    The market that supplies New York City with most of its fresh fruits and vegetables faces the prospect of its first work stoppage since 1986 if last-ditch bargaining on Tuesday fails to bridge pay differences in a contract covering 1,100 warehouse workers. “I'm not very optimistic that we’re going to get a settlement, let’s put it that way," said Dan Kane, president of Teamsters union Local 202, which represents the workers. Kane said the union has not issued a strike deadline.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:57:16 -0500
  • Widow of Eagles guitarist Frey sues NYC hospital for wrongful death

    The widow of Glenn Frey on Tuesday filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan over its treatment of the former co-lead singer and guitarist for The Eagles before he died in January 2016 at age 67. Cindy Frey accused the hospital and gastroenterologist Steven Itzkowitz of negligence for failing to properly treat her late husband's ulcerative colitis, diagnose and treat infection, and advise of the risks and side effects from treatment. As a result, "Glenn Frey was rendered sick, sore, lame and disabled," and suffered pain and mental anguish prior to his Jan. 18, 2016 death, according to the complaint filed in a New York state court in Manhattan.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:57:01 -0500
  • Trump administration to appeal 'Dreamer' immigrant ruling

    The U.S. Justice Department on Tuesday said it will ask the Supreme Court to overturn a judge's ruling last week that blocked President Donald Trump's move to end a program that protects hundreds of thousands of immigrants brought to the United States illegally as children. The Trump administration will file an appeal of the judge's injunction directly with the conservative-majority Supreme Court as well as seeking to appeal to the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the department said. The Republican president in September rescinded the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a program put in place in 2012 by his Democratic predecessor Barack Obama, effective in March.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:18:07 -0500
  • U.S. Homeland Security chief: did not hear Trump use vulgarity during meeting news

    By Yeganeh Torbati and Lisa Lambert WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, under intense questioning from Democratic senators, said on Tuesday she did not hear President Donald Trump use a vulgarity to describe African countries during an impassioned White House meeting last week. Nielsen's testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee echoed statements she has made since the meeting on Thursday with Trump and Republican and Democratic legislators, which roiled the debate on an immigration law deal and generated accusations of racism toward Trump. Democratic Senator Dick Durbin, who attended the meeting, said Trump used the word "shithole" to describe African countries but Nielsen, also who participated in the meeting, said she did not hear that.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 14:32:36 -0500
  • Factbox: High-profile recent U.S. captivity cases

    - Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight: Former school bus driver Ariel Castro of Cleveland was charged in 2013 with kidnapping three young women and keeping them captive as sex slaves in his Cleveland home for a decade. Neighbors rescued the three after Berry in May 2013 broke out of the room she had been locked in and screamed for help. - Elizabeth Smart: A homeless man named Brian Mitchell, who claimed to be a prophet, kidnapped Smart, then age 14, in 2002.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 14:23:33 -0500
  • Four South Carolina police wounded exchanging gunfire with suspect

    Police responded to an emergency call late Monday night about a man assaulting a woman at a home outside the small city of York, sheriff's office spokesman Trent Faris told reporters at a news conference. The suspect, Christian Thomas McCall, fled on foot and shot a York Police Department officer, Faris said. Other local and state law enforcement officers joined the manhunt.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 12:06:44 -0500
  • U.S. healthcare uninsured rises most in near decade: Gallup

    By Yasmeen Abutaleb WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of Americans without healthcare insurance rose by 3.2 million people between 2016 and 2017, or 1.3 percentage points to 12.2 percent, according to a Gallup poll released on Tuesday, the biggest jump in the uninsured rate in nearly a decade. Several factors likely contributed to the jump, Gallup said, including attempts by Republicans, who control both chambers of Congress and the White House, to repeal and replace the 2010 Affordable Care Act, commonly called Obamacare. The law extended health insurance to 20 million Americans.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 11:47:18 -0500
  • U.S. top court rejects former New York lawmaker Silver's appeal

    Silver, a Democrat, had appealed a July 2017 lower court ruling that set aside his conviction because of a 2016 Supreme Court precedent but concluded that prosecutors had "sufficient" evidence to prove the extortion, money laundering and honest services fraud counts on which a jury found Silver guilty. Silver's new trial is tentatively set to begin on April 16 in Manhattan federal court. Prosecutors accused Silver of collecting close to $4 million of illegal fees for awarding state grants to a top cancer researcher, and steering real estate developers to a friend's law firm and supporting their interests on rent legislation.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 10:37:17 -0500
  • Foreign governments, candidates, trade groups spent at Trump properties: report

    Sixty-four trade groups, foreign governments, Republican candidates and others stayed at or held events at properties linked to U.S. President Donald Trump during Trump's first year in office, a political watchdog group said in a report released on Tuesday. The arrangements represented "unprecedented conflicts of interest" because Trump oversees the federal government and has not divested from properties he owns or that carry his name, Public Citizen, a nonpartisan group, said in the report. Shortly before taking office last year, Trump said he would hand off control of his global business empire to his sons Donald Jr. and Eric, and move his assets into a trust to help ensure that he would not consciously take actions as president that would benefit him personally.

    Tue, 16 Jan 2018 00:03:24 -0500
  • Three still missing in California's deadly mudslides

    (Reuters) - The number of people missing from last week's deadly Southern California mudslides fell to three on Monday as hundreds of rescue workers searched for survivors from the rain-driven slides that killed 20 people. A 53-year-old transient, John Keating, had been listed among the four still missing but was found safely in Ventura, California, with his dog, the Santa County Sheriff's Office said in a statement. Three people ages 2 to 28 are still listed as missing after sheriff's detectives investigated more than 100 missing persons cases, the statement said.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 21:21:19 -0500
  • Thirteen siblings found chained in California home; parents charged

    By Mike Blake PERRY, Calif. (Reuters) - A California couple has been charged with torture after police rescued their 13 malnourished children from a home where some of them had been chained to beds, and neighbors on Monday described the family as shut-ins who shunned social contact. Police made the discovery after a 17-year-old girl escaped the house in Perris, about 70 miles (113 km) east of Los Angeles, and used a cellular phone she had found in the house to call them, the Riverside County Sheriff's Office said on Monday. "Deputies located what they believed to be 12 children inside the house, but were shocked to discover that seven of them were actually adults," police said in a statement.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 20:54:12 -0500
  • Thirteen siblings found chained, starving in California home; parents charged

    (Reuters) - Thirteen malnourished siblings, ranging in age from 2 to 29, were rescued by police in California from a house where some of them had been chained to beds, and their parents have been charged with torture, officials said on Monday. The hostages were found in a neighborhood of closely spaced one- and two-story single-family homes.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 18:52:18 -0500
  • LeBron James says Trump has emboldened racists in the U.S.

    (Note language that may offend some readers in fourth paragraph) By Rory Carroll (Reuters) - Basketball star LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers said on Monday President Donald Trump has emboldened racists in the United States and urged the country not to allow itself to be divided along racial lines. "The guy in control has given people and racism ... an opportunity to be out and outspoken without fear," James, a frequent Trump critic, told reporters prior to the Cavaliers' game against the Golden State Warriors on the U.S. holiday honoring civil rights activist Martin Luther King. "And that's the fearful thing for us because it's with you and it's around every day but he's allowed people to come out and just feel confident about doing negative things." Trump has come under fire for reportedly calling some African nations "shithole countries" during a White House meeting with lawmakers discussing U.S. immigration policy.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 18:01:22 -0500
  • North Carolina mother kills two children, jumps off bridge

    After 34-year-old Christina Treadway's suicide on Saturday, police found Isaiah Miller, 7, and Iliyah Miller, 3, with life-threatening injuries at their home, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and Charlotte media said.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 17:21:37 -0500
  • California rescuers search for victims of deadly mudslides

    (Reuters) - The search for victims of last week's deadly Southern California mudslides pushed into Monday, with hundreds of rescue workers with dogs and scanners hunting for four people still listed as missing after the rain-driven slides that killed 20 people. Emergency officials said hopes were diminishing that they would pull more survivors from the ravaged landscape of hardened muck, boulders and twisted debris left behind by the Tuesday mudslides that scoured a landscape already left barren by last year's record-setting wildfires. "We're still out there with search and rescue crews who will continue to work until we can account for those four still missing," Santa Barbara County Fire Department spokeswoman Amber Anderson said in a phone interview.

    Mon, 15 Jan 2018 12:23:55 -0500
  • Hawaii says lack of adequate fail-safe measures led to false missile alert

    Human error and a lack of adequate fail-safe measures during a civil defense warning drill led to the false missile alert that stirred panic across Hawaii over the weekend, a state emergency management agency spokesman acknowledged on Sunday. Elaborating on the origins of Saturday's false alarm, which went uncorrected for nearly 40 minutes, spokesman Richard Rapoza said the employee who mistakenly sent the missile alert "has been temporarily reassigned" to other duties. Rapoza said an internal investigation of the blunder would be completed by week's end and that the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency welcomed outside review by the Federal Communications Commission, which has jurisdiction over wireless U.S. alert systems.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 22:05:08 -0500
  • Trump denies saying he probably had good relationship with Kim

    U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday disputed a newspaper's account of an interview with him last week in which he was quoted as saying he probably had a "very good relationship" with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Accusing the Wall Street Journal of misquoting him, Trump said in tweets that he told the newspaper on Thursday that "I'd probably" have a good relationship with Kim, using a conditional tense, which he insisted was a "big difference."The White House released a portion of the audio from the interview that it said showed Trump said "I'd." The Wall Street Journal released its own audio that it said backed up its version of the events.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 21:45:37 -0500
  • Twenty now dead in California mudslides, major highway closed

    By Caroline Anderson LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The death toll from Southern California mudslides that swallowed dozens of homes and forced the closure of a major highway along the picturesque Santa Barbara County coast rose to 20 on Sunday, with four other people still reported missing. Emergency officials said chances of finding more survivors in the ravaged landscape of hardened muck, boulders and other debris had waned considerably since heavy rains unleashed torrents of mud down hillsides before dawn last Tuesday.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 21:44:58 -0500
  • Trump says 'I'm not a racist,' keeps door open for DACA deal

    By Steve Holland WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump insisted on Sunday "I'm not a racist" in response to reports that he had described immigrants from Haiti and African countries as coming from "shithole countries." Trump also said he was "ready, willing and able" to reach a deal to protect illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children from being deported but that he did not believe Democrats wanted an agreement. The debate over immigration policy became increasingly acrimonious after it was reported on Thursday that the Republican president used the word "shithole" to describe Haiti and African countries in a private meeting with lawmakers. The comments led to harsh recriminations from Democrats and Republicans alike, with some critics accusing Trump of racism, even as bipartisan talks continued in the U.S. Congress to seek a bipartisan compromise to salvage the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 21:00:27 -0500
  • Motor racing-Dan Gurney, all American racer, dead at 86

    "With one last smile on his handsome face, Dan drove off into the unknown just before noon today, January 14, 2018," it said. The family said Gurney, whose Formula One career spanned one of the most glamorous and dangerous periods of the sport's history from 1959 to 1970, had died of complications from pneumonia. A winner also in IndyCar and NASCAR, and inventor of the 'Gurney Flap' aerodynamic device, he was inducted into the Indianapolis Hall of Fame after finishing second in the 1968 and 1969 Indy 500s and third in 1970.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 20:01:37 -0500
  • Dennis Rodman arrested on DUI suspicion in California

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former basketball star Dennis Rodman was released from jail in California on Sunday after being arrested hours earlier on suspicion of driving under the influence, Newport Beach police said.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 19:38:11 -0500
  • Fire engulfs casino shuttle boat off Florida coast, 15 injured

    At least 15 people were injured when a fire engulfed a boat off the coast of Florida on Sunday, causing the 50 people aboard to jump into the Gulf of Mexico and swim to shore, local officials said. A preliminary investigation showed the fire broke out at about 4:17 p.m. EST from an apparent engine issue, said Shawn Whited, division chief with Pasco Fire Rescue. The 60-foot shuttle boat was on its way to the Sun Cruz Casino boat, a little more than three miles away in international waters.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 19:13:28 -0500
  • FCC says appears Hawaii had no safeguard to stop missile scare

    Hawaii apparently did not have adequate safeguards in place to prevent a false emergency alert about a missile attack that panicked residents for more than a half-hour before it was withdrawn, a federal official said on Sunday. Speaking after Saturday's errant ballistic missile warning to Hawaii residents, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said government officials must work to prevent future incidents. The FCC "will focus on what steps need to be taken to prevent a similar incident from happening again," he said.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 16:59:33 -0500
  • Twenty dead as search for California mudslide survivors grinds on

    By Paula Lehman-Ewing LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The search for survivors of the deadly mudslides in parts of California's Santa Barbara County continued Sunday even as hopes dwindled to find anyone alive, officials said. "We're still in rescue mode and we still hope to find someone alive, although the chances of that are becoming slim," said Justin Cooper, a spokesperson for the multi-agency response team. The death toll rose to 20 on Sunday with four people still missing, Cooper said.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 13:18:51 -0500
  • Missile false alarm causes panic for PGA Tour players

    (Reuters) - Some of the world's top professional golfers were panicked by a false report of an incoming ballistic missile in Hawaii on Saturday, with one hiding under a mattress and another fleeing to the basement of his Honolulu hotel. The alert, issued shortly after 8 A.M. local time (1800 GMT), was sent mistakenly some three hours before the start of the third round of the PGA Tour's Sony Open. Everyone is freaking out in the hotel," Steve Wheatcroft tweeted at 8.14 A.M. local time (1814 GMT).

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 12:36:33 -0500
  • Transgender U.S. military recruits enlist amid uncertainty

    Transgender Americans are openly enlisting in the U.S. military for the first time, saying they feel confident that court rulings blocking Republican President Donald Trump's ban on their service will stand. Military officials do not know how many transgender people have begun to enlist since Jan. 1, when the Defense Department began accepting openly transgender recruits. Aspiring transgender military service members in several U.S. states told Reuters they were pushing ahead with enlistments despite lingering uncertainty about whether they would be welcome in the future.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 11:12:55 -0500
  • Trump denies saying he probably had good relationship with Kim

    U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday disputed a newspaper's account of an interview with him last week in which he was quoted as saying he probably has a very good relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump said in tweets that in the Wall Street Journal interview on Thursday, he said "I'd probably" have a good relationship with Kim, using a conditional tense. The White House released a portion of the audio from the interview that it said showed Trump said "I'd." The Wall Street Journal released its own audio that it said backed up its version of the events.

    Sun, 14 Jan 2018 10:51:19 -0500
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