By Steve Holland DENVER (Reuters) - A man shouted "get that man a beer" and sure enough, President Barack Obama soon had a cold pint in his hand and prepared to play billiards with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper. This Tuesday night out on the town in Denver, which included slices of pizza with a group of people who had written to him, was Obama's way of escaping the confines of Washington, where partisan gridlock reigns supreme. It was a case of "the bear is loose," the president's own description of the times when he is able to break free of the trappings of Washington and experience what everyday Americans see. Shaking hands with dozens of bystanders along a Denver street, the "bear" came face-to-face with a person wearing a horse's head mask, in honor of the Denver Broncos NFL football team.
HONOLULU (AP) — An "evil" stepmother derived pleasure from severely beating her husband's 5-year-old daughter while they lived in Army housing in Hawaii, a federal judge said Tuesday as he upheld a plea deal the woman made with prosecutors to receive a 20-year sentence for the murder of the child.
By Robin Respaut SACRAMENTO Calif. (Reuters) - The judge in Stockton, California's bankruptcy on Tuesday ruled that the city has collateral worth $4 million with which it could pay holdout creditor Franklin Templeton, dismissing the city's contention its collateral was worthless. At the same time, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein made no ruling on Tuesday on whether the California Public Employees' Retirement System, or Calpers, should be made to accept less than the entire amount it is owed while bondholders take losses in the case. Klein's ruling on the collateral in the case of Stockton, which filed for bankruptcy in June 2012, followed a trial that concluded last month and centered around Franklin's objection to the city proposing to repay it less than a penny on the dollar for a debt of about $36 million. The city's collateral against bonds held by Franklin includes two golf courses, a community center and a park, which the city had estimated had no value while Franklin had pegged their value at $6.12 million to $17.34 million.
By Eric Kelsey LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Donald Sterling on Tuesday sparred with his estranged wife's attorney at a trial over the $2 billion sale of the NBA franchise, interrupting and shouting during testimony and saying he wants to keep the team for financial reasons. The 80-year-old real estate billionaire, who has been deemed by physicians to have Alzheimer's disease and is unable to handle business affairs, said he was blocking the sale brokered by his wife to former Microsoft Corp Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer because he believed the team's value could be more than double. It is the first time Sterling has spoken publicly since a televised interview in May shortly after he was banned from the NBA for life for taped racist remarks that were made public. "It showed you the enormous hypocrisy of this guy, who will spout all these things about how he loves his wife, but he's suing her." Shelly Sterling, 79, has asked Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Levanas to confirm her as the sole trustee of the family trust that owns the Clippers and to back the NBA-record deal.
By Eric M. Johnson and Bryan Cohen SEATTLE (Reuters) - Eager customers lined up before dawn on Tuesday as Washington became the second U.S. state to allow the sale of marijuana for recreational use, although shortages and high prices were likely to accompany any euphoria. Store employees clapped and cheered at Top Shelf Cannabis in the northern city of Bellingham as its first buds were sold to a 29-year-old from Kansas, Cale Holdsworth. "I'm happy to be a part of history," said Holdsworth, who was on vacation visiting family and took his place at the front of the line at about 4 a.m. A handful of shops opened a day after 25 outlets were issued licenses under a heavily regulated and taxed system approved by voters in November 2012. The nation, and the federal government, are watching Washington's rollout as a broader trend of liberalization and pro-pot activism takes hold in the United States.
BOSTON (AP) — Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev did not seem nervous or agitated in the days after the deadly attack, his former college roommate testified Tuesday during the trial of a Tsarnaev friend accused of obstructing the investigation.
NEW YORK (AP) — Security video showed nothing amiss when Frankea Dabbs — wearing dark glasses, pushing a baby stroller and pulling a rolling suitcase — entered a busy Manhattan subway station Monday night.
The Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad, where remnants of 2,500 degraded chemical rockets filled decades ago with the deadly nerve agent sarin are stored along with other chemical warfare agents, Iraq said in a letter circulated Tuesday at the United Nations.