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  • West Virginia teachers to continue strike, in charter schools fight

    A bill that would have opened the first charter schools in West Virginia failed to win approval in the state House of Delegates on Tuesday after Governor Jim Justice, a Republican, vowed to veto it. Union leaders vowed to continue the strike on Wednesday after the House of Delegates voted 53-45 to effectively kill the legislation. Teachers would converge on the State Capitol building in Charleston for "one more day to make sure there are no legislative antics," American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and Fred Albert, president of the labor group's state chapter, said in a statement.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 23:22:18 -0500
  • Pressure mounts on Alabama publisher after he urges KKK to 'ride again'

    The widespread rebuke of the editorial published last week by The Democrat-Reporter of Linden, a town in western Alabama with a population of about 2,000, came after a student journalist tweeted an image of the piece on Monday, calling attention to its language. The Ku Klux Klan was a white supremacist group that terrorized blacks in the U.S. South and later targeted other minority groups, following the Civil War and the emancipation of African-American slaves. "The rhetoric displayed by the Democrat-Reporter is disturbing, disgusting, and entirely unacceptable," U.S. Senator Richard Shelby, a Republican from Alabama, said in a statement on Tuesday.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 20:59:14 -0500
  • U.S. agency to cancel $929 million in California high-speed rail funds

    Golocal247.com news

    California Governor Gavin Newsom said last week the state will dramatically scale back a planned $77.3 billion high-speed rail project that has faced cost hikes, delays and management concerns, but will finish a smaller section of the line. The Transportation Department's Federal Railroad Administration said in a letter it wanted to halt funding because the state had "failed to make reasonable progress." It cited Newsom's announcement to scale back the project.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 20:55:03 -0500
  • Teen in Lincoln Memorial protest sues Washington Post for $250 million

    Golocal247.com news

    The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Kentucky by Covington Catholic High School student Nicholas Sandmann, 16, seeks $250 million in damages, the amount that Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com and the world's richest person, paid for the Post in 2013.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 20:40:01 -0500
  • Trump confident he will prevail against lawsuits over emergency declaration

    President Donald Trump expressed confidence on Tuesday that he would prevail against a lawsuit filed by 16 U.S. states seeking to block his declaration of a national emergency to fund a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico. The group of states, including California and New York, has charged the president and top officials in his administration with taking away taxpayer funds for their communities to fulfill a promise from his 2016 campaign to curb illegal immigration and the flow of drugs. Trump's remarks to reporters in the Oval Office suggested he was not concerned or surprised by the states' legal challenge.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 19:40:37 -0500
  • Mississippi man died after beating by sheriff's officers, lawsuit says

    "Later that day, prison guards of the Madison County Detention Center essentially administered the death penalty to Mr. Hill using excessive force, handcuffs and pepper spray," the complaint said. The suit, filed by Hill's mother, Betty Hill, seeks unspecified damages. Betty Hill's lawyers said that in the months that followed her son's death two more inmates died in custody at the jail run by Madison County Sheriff Randy Tucker.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 19:07:04 -0500
  • North Carolina poll workers admit improperly running early results

    North Carolina poll workers told election officials on Tuesday they illegally viewed early election results last year, the latest evidence in a probe of voting irregularities in a still unsettled congressional race. The investigation into the disputed Nov. 6 election for the state's 9th Congressional District seat also uncovered an unlawful absentee ballot scheme by an operative for Republican candidate Mark Harris, according to testimony at the hearing that could prompt a new vote. The seat has remained vacant since state officials refused to certify Harris' apparent victory over Democratic rival Dan McCready by 905 votes out of 282,717 ballots cast.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 19:01:54 -0500
  • Trump signs directive in step to create U.S. Space Force

    Golocal247.com news

    Republican U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed a directive to start the lengthy process of creating a new branch of the military dedicated to handling threats in space, the U.S. Space Force. Space Policy Directive 4 sets the foundation for a legislative initiative to establish a new force under the aegis of the Air Force, the branch currently responsible for space, comparable to the Marines under the U.S. Navy. The Trump administration has said it plans to usher in the force by 2020.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 18:57:53 -0500
  • Trump confident he will prevail against lawsuits over emergency declaration

    Golocal247.com news

    The group of states, including California and New York, has charged the president and top officials in his administration with taking away taxpayer funds for their communities to fulfill a promise from his 2016 campaign to curb illegal immigration and the flow of drugs. The White House declined to comment on the filing late on Monday, but Trump's remarks to reporters in the Oval Office suggested he was not concerned or surprised by the legal challenges. "I think, in the end, we're going to be very successful with the lawsuit," Trump said.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 18:42:06 -0500
  • U.S. seeks return of $2.5 billion California high-speed rail funds

    California Governor Gavin Newsom said last week the state will dramatically scale back a planned $77.3 billion high-speed rail project that has faced cost hikes, delays and management concerns, but will finish a smaller section of the line. The Transportation Department's Federal Railroad Administration said in a letter it wanted to halt funding because the state had "failed to make reasonable progress." It cited Newsom's announcement to scale back the project. Newsom's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 18:19:46 -0500
  • Teen in Lincoln Memorial protest sues Washington Post for $250 million

    Golocal247.com news

    The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Kentucky by Covington Catholic High School student Nicholas Sandmann, 16, seeks $250 million in damages - saying that was the amount Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com and the world's richest person, paid for the Post in 2013.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 17:47:27 -0500
  • North Carolina poll workers admit improperly running early results

    Golocal247.com news

    The investigation into the disputed Nov. 6 election for the state's 9th Congressional District seat also uncovered an unlawful absentee ballot scheme by an operative for Republican candidate Mark Harris, according to testimony at the hearing that could prompt a new vote. Poll worker Agnes Willis told the five-member State Board of Elections in Raleigh on Tuesday that she and other poll workers viewed early results in the Bladen County sheriff's race before the general election. North Carolina law prohibits running voting results before the general election.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 17:12:35 -0500
  • Former Trump adviser Stone ordered to appear in court over Instagram posts

    Golocal247.com news

    U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said Stone would need to show cause at a hearing on Thursday as to why the posts did not violate a gag order in the case or the conditions of his release. Stone, who is free on a $250,000 bond and is free to travel to certain U.S. cities without the court's permission, has pleaded not guilty to charges of making false statements to Congress, obstruction and witness tampering as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Stone's attorneys filed a formal apology with the court on Monday, after he posted a photograph on Instagram of Jackson alongside what appeared to be the crosshairs of a gun.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 16:40:04 -0500
  • Key White House deputy press secretary to leave for private sector

    Golocal247.com news

    Lindsay Walters, one of the original communications officials in U.S. President Donald Trump's White House, plans to resign soon to join the private sector, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced on Tuesday. Walters, a former Republican National Committee aide who has been a deputy White House press secretary since Trump's presidency began, is going to be vice president for U.S. public policy at Edelman, a global communications firm.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 15:22:06 -0500
  • West Virginia lawmakers reject charter school bill in victory for striking teachers

    Golocal247.com news

    The 53-45 vote by the House of Delegates effectively kills the legislation, which Governor Jim Justice, a Republican, had vowed to veto. Charter schools are publicly funded but run by private groups. West Virginia is one of only six states that has not passed laws to allow for charter schools, according to the non-profit research group the Education Commission of the States.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 15:19:04 -0500
  • U.S. Supreme Court bars Texas from executing death row inmate

    Golocal247.com news

    Texas cannot execute a black death row inmate convicted in the 1980 Houston murder of a grocery store clerk, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday, concluding that he is intellectually disabled and therefore exempt from capital punishment. The divided court ruled that a Texas appeals court misapplied the law by again rejecting an appeal brought by inmate Bobby Moore, 59, seeking to avoid execution on the basis of intellectual disability. Texas has executed more prisoners than any other state since the Supreme Court allowed the resumption of capital punishment in 1976 after halting it in 1972.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 14:43:53 -0500
  • U.S. top court rejects bid to block Indivior opioid drug copycat

    Golocal247.com news

    Chief Justice John Roberts, in a brief order, denied Indivior's request to put on hold a lower court's ruling that had opened the door to cheaper generic versions of Suboxone while the company prepares an appeal to the high court. The United States faces an opioid abuse epidemic that President Donald Trump has declared a public health emergency. Suboxone Film, which absorbs into the body by dissolving under a patient's tongue or along the cheek, can be used to treat addiction to heroin and prescription painkillers.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 11:36:47 -0500
  • U.S. top court rejects ex-congressman's appeal in spending scandal

    Golocal247.com news

    The justices declined to hear Schock's appeal of a lower court's refusal to throw out an indictment against the 37-year-old former lawmaker from Illinois after he argued the charges violated U.S. constitutional protections for members of Congress.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 10:50:26 -0500
  • U.S. top court takes case that could limit water pollution law

    Golocal247.com news

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to consider limiting the scope of a landmark law aimed at curbing water pollution in a dispute pitting environmentalists against local authorities in Hawaii over a wastewater treatment plant. The justices agreed to hear an appeal by Maui County of a lower court ruling last year siding with the Hawaii Wildlife Fund in its 2012 lawsuit accusing local officials of violating the 1972 Clean Water Act. The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that a Clean Water Act program requiring property owners responsible for polluted water discharged from pipes, drains or other "point sources" to obtain federal permits should apply to discharges from the county wastewater facility that end up in the Pacific Ocean.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 10:44:59 -0500
  • U.S. top court rejects Maryland bid to revive drug price-gouging law

    Golocal247.com news

    The justices declined to take up Maryland's appeal of a 2018 federal appeals court ruling that struck down the state's law, That ruling held that Maryland had regulated wholesale pricing by the companies in violation of the U.S. Constitution's bar on state-level regulation of interstate commerce. The Association for Accessible Medicines, a trade group representing generic drug manufacturers such as Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and Mylan NV, filed the legal challenge against the anti-price gouging law. Maryland enacted the measure in 2017 after a series of high-profile price hikes by drugmakers including a 2015 increase by Turing Pharmaceuticals of its anti-parasitic drug Daraprim from $13.50 to $750 per pill.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 10:27:13 -0500
  • Mexican national dies in U.S. Border Patrol custody

    The man, who was not identified by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, was taken into custody Feb. 2 in Texas near the Roma Port of Entry on suspicion of "illegal entry," officials said in a statement on Monday. In December, a 7-year-old girl from Guatemala died of dehydration and shock hours after she was taken into U.S. Border Patrol custody.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 08:26:47 -0500
  • Leader of U.S. anti-harassment group Time's Up resigns

    Golocal247.com news

    The president and chief executive of Time's Up, a group dedicated to fighting sexual discrimination and harassment in the workplace, has resigned in order to focus on undisclosed family concerns, Time's Up said on Monday. "It is with deep regret that I must resign from Time's Up to address family concerns that require my singular focus," Lisa Borders said in a statement. Chief Operating Officer Rebecca Goldman will serve as interim chief executive while Time's Up searches for a replacement, the group said.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 06:48:22 -0500
  • Sixteen rescued from SeaWorld ride hanging over a California bay

    San Diego Fire-Rescue Department (SDFR) crews lowered the park guests one-at-a-time with ropes and harnesses into boats in Mission Bay and they were assessed by emergency medical workers waiting on the dock, the SDFR said on twitter. "All 16 persons trapped in the gondolas ride are safe and on the ground," SDFR posted online late on Monday.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 02:49:04 -0500
  • U.S. states sue Trump administration in showdown over border wall funds

    Golocal247.com news

    The lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California came after Trump invoked emergency powers on Friday to help build the wall that was his signature 2016 campaign promise. Trump's order would allow him to spend on the wall money that Congress appropriated for other purposes. Congress declined to fulfill his request for $5.7 billion to help build the wall this year.. "Today, on Presidents Day, we take President Trump to court to block his misuse of presidential power," California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement.

    Tue, 19 Feb 2019 01:52:00 -0500
  • Former Trump adviser Stone apologizes to judge after photo post

    Golocal247.com news

    President Donald Trump's former adviser Roger Stone apologized on Monday after posting on Instagram a photo of the judge overseeing his trial for allegedly making false statements to Congress, obstruction and witness tampering. The photo of U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, which included a symbol that appeared to represent crosshairs, was later taken down.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 23:09:35 -0500
  • U.S. FAA investigates Southwest over baggage weight discrepancies: WSJ

    A company spokeswoman said there was an open Letter of Investigation (LOI), which is a common mechanism for the FAA to document and share safety interests or concerns with an airline. The airline has not been issued fines and faces no enforcement action regarding its weight and balance program, Southwest spokeswoman Brandy King said. "In this case, the LOI addresses an issue that Southwest voluntarily reported to the FAA last year and since that time, Southwest has implemented controls to address weight and balance program concerns, and shared those measures with the FAA," King said.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 19:26:00 -0500
  • Official cites 'unlawful' balloting in U.S. congressional vote

    Golocal247.com news

    Kim Strach, executive director of the state election board, on Monday said investigators had uncovered a "coordinated, unlawful and substantially resourced absentee ballot scheme" orchestrated by a political operative working for Harris. Strach said operative Leslie McCrae Dowless hired workers to collect absentee ballot requests from voters and then return to retrieve the ballots, in violation of state law. Lisa Britt, who worked for Dowless on the absentee ballots, testified that he instructed his workers to fill in responses for races left blank to avoid “red flags” with the local elections board.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 18:44:57 -0500
  • Exclusive: Air Force to push Congress for military housing tenant bill of rights

    Golocal247.com news

    The proposed measure, outlined in an interview at the Pentagon by Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson and Chief of Staff David L. Goldfein, follows complaints from military families who say they are often powerless to challenge private industry landlords when they encounter dangerous mold, lead paint and vermin infestations. Added Secretary Wilson: “That could put a little more leverage into the hands of the renters.” The Air Force push adds to a drumbeat of reforms to emerge in recent weeks following a Reuters series, Ambushed at Home, that documented shoddy housing conditions at bases nationwide and described how military families are often empowered with fewer rights than civilian tenants. Read the series Ambushed at Home at https://reut.rs/2t1Y2UA Wilson said the Air Force is actively working with the Army and Navy to push a tenant bill of rights that would give military families a stronger hand in housing disputes.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 17:06:54 -0500
  • Presidents Day protests decry Trump's emergency declaration

    Golocal247.com news

    Calling Trump's declaration an abuse of power and usurpation of Congress, organizers with the nonprofit advocacy group MoveOn.org and other participants said it was important to let the outrage over the move be heard. “We disagree with the state of emergency declared by the president and stand with our immigrant colleagues and friends,” said Darcy Regan, executive director of Indivisible Chicago, which co-hosted the protest there. Trump invoked the emergency powers on Friday after Congress declined to fulfill his request for $5.7 billion to help build the wall that was his signature 2016 campaign promise.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 15:08:40 -0500
  • FAA investigates Southwest over baggage weight discrepancies: WSJ

    Golocal247.com news

    The airline has not been issued fines and faces no enforcement action regarding its weight and balance program, Southwest spokesman Brandy King said. "In this case, the LOI addresses an issue that Southwest voluntarily reported to the FAA last year and since that time, Southwest has implemented controls to address weight and balance program concerns, and shared those measures with the FAA," King said.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 13:03:24 -0500
  • Trump's 'relentless attack' on FBI prompted memoir by former official: NPR

    Golocal247.com news

    Former top FBI official Andrew McCabe decried the "relentless attack" he said U.S. President Donald Trump has launched against the agency, according to released excerpts of an interview with NPR's Morning Edition, to be aired early Monday. "I think the FBI has been under a relentless attack in the last two years," said McCabe, who is promoting his new memoir, "The Threat: How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terrorism and Trump." Trump's attack is one of the reasons he wrote his book, he said in a wide-ranging interview that covered everything from his own firing, the probe into Russia’s alleged role in the 2016 presidential election, and FBI morale.

    Mon, 18 Feb 2019 06:37:20 -0500
  • California tells Trump that lawsuit over border wall is 'imminent'

    Golocal247.com news

    California will "imminently" challenge President Donald Trump's declaration of a national emergency to obtain funds for a U.S.-Mexico border wall, state Attorney General Xavier Becerra said on Sunday. "Definitely and imminently," Becerra told ABC's "This Week" program when asked whether and when California would sue the Trump administration in federal court. Trump invoked the emergency powers on Friday under a 1976 law after Congress rebuffed his request for $5.7 billion to help build the wall that was a signature 2016 campaign promise.

    Sun, 17 Feb 2019 18:59:23 -0500
  • Chicago police seek follow-up interview with 'Empire' actor

    Golocal247.com news

    Chicago police have shifted the direction of their investigation into actor Jussie Smollett's report of a hate-crime assault and are seeking to interview him again, after releasing two men detained for questioning in the probe, a police spokesman said on Saturday. According to Smollett's account, his assailants struck him in the face, draped a rope around his neck and doused him with an "unknown chemical substance" before fleeing. On Wednesday evening this week, police said they arrested two Nigerian brothers described as "persons of interest" who were recognized from surveillance camera footage taken in the area of the alleged Jan. 29 assault.

    Sun, 17 Feb 2019 17:08:46 -0500
  • Alabama jury awards $152 million in Ford Explorer rollover case

    Golocal247.com news

    The jury awarded $100 million in punitive damages and the rest in compensatory damages after finding on Friday that the 1998 Ford Explorer did not meet Ford's own safety guidelines and that Ford "acted wantonly" in designing the vehicle, according to a court document seen by Reuters and lawyers for plaintiff Travaris "Tre" Smith. Ford said it plans to appeal.

    Sun, 17 Feb 2019 15:41:08 -0500
  • Ex-congressman Weiner released from prison after sexting scandal

    Golocal247.com news

    Weiner, 54, has been released from the Federal Medical Center in Devens, Massachusetts, and is under the supervision of a residential re-entry management office in Brooklyn, according to prison records. The seven-term congressman who ran unsuccessfully several times for New York City mayor will be free on May 14, records show, about three months earlier than his 21-month sentence. The FBI discovered a trove of emails belonging to his then-wife, Huma Abedin, a senior aide to Hillary Clinton, on Weiner's laptop.

    Sun, 17 Feb 2019 14:25:16 -0500
  • Acting Pentagon chief not decided yet on funding border wall

    Golocal247.com news

    President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency in a bid to fund his promised wall at the U.S.-Mexico border without congressional approval. A U.S. defense official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that Shanahan was likely to approve the $3.6 billion being redirected from the military construction budget. By declaring a national emergency, Trump can use certain Department of Defense funding to build the wall.

    Sun, 17 Feb 2019 10:19:58 -0500
  • Illinois factory gunman obtained firearm permit despite felony conviction

    Golocal247.com news

    Gary Martin, 45, who carried his pistol to work on Friday apparently suspecting he faced dismissal from his job, opened fire after being told of his termination in a meeting at the Henry Pratt Company plant in Aurora, Illinois, about 40 miles (64 km) west of Chicago, police said. The dead included the plant manager, a human resources supervisor, a human resources intern and two other workers. A sixth employee and five police officers responding to the scene were wounded, and the gunman himself was slain about 90 minutes later in a gunfight with police who stormed the building.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 20:12:50 -0500
  • College intern on first day among Illinois factory shooting victims

    Trevor Wehner was working his first day as a human resources intern at Henry Pratt Company in Aurora, Illinois, when a worker who had just been fired killed him and four of his colleagues. Friday's shooting rampage at the water distribution products factory and warehouse west of Chicago also killed the plant's manager and its head of human resources. Wehner, 21, from the village of Sheridan, Illinois, was on track to graduate in May from Northern Illinois University (NIU) with a degree in human resource management, the school said.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 19:22:04 -0500
  • U.S. military not decided yet on necessity of border wall

    Golocal247.com news

    Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Saturday he had not yet determined whether a border wall with Mexico was a military necessity or how much Pentagon money would be used. President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency in a bid to fund his promised wall at the U.S.-Mexico border without congressional approval. By declaring a national emergency, Trump can use certain Department of Defense funding to build the wall.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 18:08:24 -0500
  • Lee Radziwill, Jackie Kennedy Onassis' younger sister, dies at 85

    Golocal247.com news

    CBS News, citing family friend Mathilde Favier, the public relations director for Christian Dior, said Radziwill died on Friday. Women's Wear Daily had first reported the death on its website, saying it occurred at Radziwill's New York City home. Radziwill's world was inhabited by doyennes of high society, artistic celebrities, fashion moguls and wealthy, prominent husbands - including one whose royal status made her a real-life princess.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 16:42:10 -0500
  • College intern on first day among Illinois factory shooting victims

    Friday's shooting rampage at the water distribution products factory and warehouse west of Chicago also killed the plant's manager and its head of human resources. Wehner, 21, from the village of Sheridan, Illinois, was on track to graduate in May from Northern Illinois University (NIU) with a degree in human resource management, the school said. "Our little town of Sheridan is rocked to its very core! ... RIP Trevor Wehner.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 16:37:58 -0500
  • Illinois factory gunman killed five victims after being fired

    Golocal247.com news

    The gunman who killed five co-workers and wounded five police officers at an Illinois factory was a violent felon who had just been fired, and the plant manager and a young intern were among his victims, authorities said on Saturday. Gary Martin, 45, armed himself with a handgun, which he owned illegally, before reporting for a meeting on Friday at the Henry Pratt Company where his employment was terminated, Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman told reporters. Martin had bought the gun he used, a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson handgun with a laser sight, in 2014 before authorities realized he had a prior felony conviction, Ziman said.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 16:27:38 -0500
  • Gunman in Aurora, Illinois, shooting described as 'loner'

    Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman said Martin shot six fellow employees, five of them fatally, at the sprawling warehouse where he had worked for 15 years, and wounded five police officers before he was slain by police 90 minutes later. Jeremy Sherman, a neighbor of Martin's at Acorn Woods Condominium Complex in Aurora, about 40 miles west of Chicago, told Newsweek's Daily Beast website that Martin could often be found outside playing with his remote-control toy cars and drones. "He kept to himself a lot, and he was always on his porch," he told the Daily Beast.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 15:52:41 -0500
  • Former U.S. Cardinal McCarrick defrocked for sex crimes

    Golocal247.com news

    Pope Francis has decided that the ruling, which followed an appeal by McCarrick, a power-broker as Archbishop of Washington, D.C. from 2001 to 2006, was now final. A Vatican statement said his crimes were made more serious by "the aggravating factor of the abuse of power". The 88-year-old, who in July became the first Roman Catholic prelate in nearly 100 years to lose the title of cardinal, has now become the highest profile church figure to be dismissed from the priesthood in modern times.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 10:27:15 -0500
  • Dismissed employee kills five co-workers in Illinois factory shooting

    Golocal247.com news

    A gunman opened fire at an Illinois factory just after receiving notice of termination from his job there on Friday, killing five fellow workers and wounding five policemen before he was slain by police, authorities said. The assailant, identified as Gary Martin, 45, had worked at the Henry Pratt Company for 15 years before Friday's violence unfolded at the firm's sprawling facility in Aurora, 40 miles (65 km) west of Chicago, Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman said. At a late-night news conference, Ziman said it was not yet clear whether the suspect, armed with a Smith & Wesson handgun, was carrying the weapon at the time of his dismissal or whether he "went to retrieve it" before opening fire.

    Sat, 16 Feb 2019 01:03:21 -0500
  • Suspects in alleged attack on 'Empire' actor released

    "Due to new evidence as a result of today's interrogations, the individuals questioned by police in the Empire case have now been released without charging and detectives have additional investigative work to complete," the Chicago Police Department said in a email to Reuters. A spokesman for the department on Friday night declined to confirm to Reuters whether the individuals released were the two Nigerian brothers police said they arrested on Wednesday at Chicago O'Hare Airport in connection to the attack. Authorities had previously said only that the pair, whose names have not been released, were persons of interest after they were recognized from surveillance camera footage taken in the area where Smollett said two men shouted slurs at him and put a rope around his neck on Jan. 29.

    Fri, 15 Feb 2019 23:33:18 -0500
  • U.S. court faults Puerto Rico board appointments, keeps bankruptcy alive

    A U.S. Appeals Court ruled on Friday that members of Puerto Rico's federally created oversight board were unconstitutionally appointed but declined to dismiss the bankruptcy cases the board filed for the U.S. commonwealth. The ruling allows the island's 2017 federal court cases seeking to restructure about $120 billion of debt and pension obligations to continue and leaves court-approved restructuring deals in place. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit set a 90-day period to allow President Donald Trump and the U.S. Senate to constitutionally validate the appointments or reconstitute the board.

    Fri, 15 Feb 2019 21:54:13 -0500
  • U.S. to slash payouts from 9/11 victims fund

    Golocal247.com news

    Rupa Bhattacharyya, the special master, said the reduction in payouts from the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund is necessary because the $2.375 billion remaining in the $7.375 billion fund is not enough to compensate the thousands of additional eligible victims and family members. "I am painfully aware of the unfairness of this plan," Bhattacharyya said on a conference call with reporters. Bhattacharyya said the fund would have needed to be $12 billion, instead of $7.375 billion, to compensate everyone fully.

    Fri, 15 Feb 2019 21:49:57 -0500
  • Trump declares emergency for border wall, House panel launches probe

    The Republican president's move, circumventing Congress, seeks to make good on a 2016 presidential campaign pledge to build a border wall that Trump insists is necessary to curtail illegal immigration he blames for bringing crime and drugs into the United States. Within hours, the action was challenged in a lawsuit filed on behalf of three Texas landowners, saying that Trump's declaration violates the U.S. Constitution and that the planned wall would infringe on their property rights. Hours after Trump's announcement, the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives' Judiciary Committee said it had launched an investigation into the emergency declaration.

    Fri, 15 Feb 2019 21:46:03 -0500
  • Trump to nominate Jeffrey Byard as U.S. emergency management chief

    President Donald Trump intends to nominate Jeffrey Byard, a senior official at the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, to be its administrator, replacing Brock Long who said this week he was resigning, the White House said on Friday.

    Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:44:49 -0500
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