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U.S. Joint Chiefs drafting military cyber standards: arms tester

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 03:03
By Andrea Shalal WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The chief U.S. weapons tester said on Tuesday he was working with the Joint Chiefs of Staff to draft military requirements to address widespread cyber vulnerabilities in nearly every arms program and military command. An announcement is expected soon from the Joint Chiefs, who oversee and set requirements for all military weapons purchases, said Michael Gilmore, the Pentagon's director of operational test and evaluation. Gilmore said the office of Navy Admiral James Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs, has made "a lot of progress" on developing a "sensible and measurable" joint military requirement for cybersecurity.

Former Alamo managers sue Texas in battle over archives

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 03:01
By Jim Forsyth SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - The private heritage group that managed the Alamo, the site of the famed 1836 battle for Texas independence, has sued the state over what it says is an illegal attempt to take over some 38,000 rare books, letters, and artifacts it owns. The lawsuit filed by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT), which had run the San Antonio site for more than century before being dismissed by the Texas Land Office earlier this month, claims the office "unilaterally declared" the state is the rightful owner of the valuable collection. "The DRT, indeed all Texans, deserve better treatment," the group said in its lawsuit filed on Monday in a Bexar County court. Land Office spokeswoman Brittany Eck said the office "does not comment on pending litigation." The suit comes as state and city officials look to revamp the downtown plaza where the structure's famed facade has become one of the most recognizable and most visited items in the state.

Reptile roundup: Arrest warrant leads to reptile seizure

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:54

In an undated photo provided by the New Castle County (Del.) Police Department, authorities remove a monitor lizard from an apartment in Wilmington, Del. Delaware authorities say the search for a woman on probation with several outstanding warrants, turned up drugs, guns and 17 dangerous reptiles. Authorities say they arrested three people, 25-five-year-old Jennifer Chadwick, 32-year-old Antonio Graves and 28-year-old Jerimiah Feaster, in a filthy New Castle County apartment Friday, March 20, 2015. All three face gun and drug charges, as well as charges of endangering a 3-year-old found in the apartment. Authorities removed 16 monitor lizards and a boa constrictor from the apartment. The lizards, which are not legal to own, were described by local zoo officials as extremely dangerous, especially around children. The apartment was condemned and deemed unfit for habitation. (AP Photo/New Castle County (Del.) Police Department)NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) — Delaware authorities say the search for a woman on probation with several outstanding warrants turned up drugs, guns and 17 dangerous reptiles.

Appeals court hears arguments over license for orca 'Lolita'

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:43
MIAMI (AP) — Animal rights groups that want a captive killer whale removed from Miami Seaquarium asked federal appeals judges Tuesday to send their lawsuit against the tourist attraction and the U.S. Department of Agriculture back to a U.S. district court.

Utah to use firing squads if lethal drugs are unavailable

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:38

FILE - In this Feb. 5, 2015, file photo, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert speaks to members of the media during a news conference at the Utah State Capitol, in Salt Lake City. Utah became the only state to allow firing squads for executions Monday when Herbert signed a law approving the controversial method's use when no lethal-injection drugs are available. Herbert has said he finds the firing squad "a little bit gruesome," but Utah is a capital punishment state and needs a backup execution method in case a shortage of the drugs persists. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah became the only state to allow firing squads for executions if lethal injection drugs are unavailable when Gov. Gary Herbert signed a law approving the method, even though he has called it "a little bit gruesome."

Hernandez cousin made to testify says she can't recall facts

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:36

Witness Jennifer Mercado, a cousin of defendant Aaron Hernandez, smiles while testifying about their relationship during the murder trial of the former New England Patriots NFL football player at Bristol County Superior Court, Tuesday, March 24, 2015, in Fall River, Mass. Hernandez is charged with killing semiprofessional football player Odin Lloyd in June 2013. (AP Photo/The Boston Globe, Aram Boghosian, Pool)FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) — A cousin of former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez took the stand in his murder trial Tuesday after being ordered to testify, giving him a big smile and telling the prosecutor she couldn't remember details of what happened in the days surrounding the killing.

Park service wants dogs to chase geese off National Mall

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:24
WASHINGTON (AP) — The National Park Service wants to begin using border collies to chase away Canada geese that frequent the Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool and other spots on the National Mall.

Oregon man accused of blowing pot smoke into infant's mouth

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:24
BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man has been accused of blowing pot smoke into the mouth of his year-old child.

FAA streamlines approval for some commercial drone use

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:09
By David Morgan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. aviation regulators on Tuesday unveiled a new policy to speed up approval for the use of commercial drones in the United States under certain conditions. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), in a move first reported by Reuters last week [L2N0WM248], said it would award "blanket" certification allowing companies exempt from a U.S. ban on commercial drones to begin using the aircraft at altitudes of up to 200 feet (61 meters) during daylight hours and within the operator's visual line of sight. Up to now, companies exempt from the ban have had to seek certification for new drone use, a process that could take up to 60 days for each project. The change could be a boost for companies that already have exemptions from the commercial drone ban, such as Chevron, Berkshire Hathaway's BNSF Railway Co and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. An FAA official told Reuters it would eventually benefit companies still seeking aircraft approval including Yamaha Motor Co Ltd, AeroVironment Inc and General Atomics.

AP: South Carolina's anti-debt gov OK'd $1B in borrowing

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:08

FILE - In this Feb. 27, 2012, file photo, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley waits for President Barack Obama to speak in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington. Haley berated fellow Republicans in the South Carolina House for proposing to borrow about $500 million for building projects statewide. But an Associated Press review published Tuesday, March 24, found she has approved more than $1 billion in state-backed borrowing as head of the state's financial oversight board. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Gov. Nikki Haley helped kill a plan by fellow Republicans in the South Carolina House to borrow $500 million for building projects, accusing them of running up the state's "credit card" debt. Yet Haley herself has approved more than $1 billion in state-backed borrowing as head of South Carolina's financial oversight board, according to an Associated Press review.

Police: Driver possibly had medical problem before bus hit Blue Bell home

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:06

 Driver possibly had medical problem before bus hit Blue Bell homeThe driver of a school bus that slammed into a home in Blue Bell, Pa. may have suffered some kind of medical issue.

Illinois House passes bills to plug state budget gap

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:02
The Illinois House of Representatives on Tuesday approved a bill that would plug a $1.6 billion hole in the state's budget by cutting spending on most programs by 2.25 percent and tapping money from other funds. The bills now move to the state Senate, where Senate President John Cullerton will meet with his Democratic caucus to gauge support, said Rikeesha Phelon, his spokeswoman. Cullerton said last month that the questionable $6.6 billion in spending cuts and savings that new Republican Governor Bruce Rauner put in his $32 billion fiscal 2016 budget proposal on Feb. 18 made reaching an agreement on the fiscal 2015 budget fix more difficult. Earlier on Tuesday, top aides to Rauner testified before the House Executive Committee in favor of the Democrat-sponsored legislation to fix the current budget.

Wife of man accused of faking death given public defender

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 02:00
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The wife of a man who authorities say faked his own death to defraud insurance companies out of millions appeared briefly in court on counts of insurance fraud.

Amy's Kitchen recalls spinach products over listeria concerns

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:50
Amy's Kitchen Inc is recalling about 74,000 cases of products that might contain organic spinach contaminated with listeria, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said. One of the Petaluma, California, company's suppliers may have provided organic spinach that might have listeria, the FDA said in a statement on its website. The recalled products were distributed to stores nationwide in the United States and in Canada. Amy's Kitchen is not aware of any illness connected to the products, the Sunday statement said.

Police: Dangerous lizards, child found during drug bust

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:50

 Dangerous lizards, child found during drug bustPolice say they found dangerous lizards along with a small child during a drug bust in Wilmington, Delaware.

Dallas death points to dangers of black-market cosmetic work

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:41

FILE - In this Nov. 26, 2013, file photo, Elva Navarro faces a justice of the peace at the Hidalgo County Jail in Edinburg, Texas. The South Texas woman was sentenced in December 2014 to three years in prison for the death of a customer injected with liquid silicone at the woman’s spa. The recent death of a Dallas woman who received illegal buttocks injections follows other fatal black-market procedures that highlight the popularity of cosmetic surgery. (AP Photo/The McAllen Monitor, Ildefonso Ortiz, File)DALLAS (AP) — The recent death of a Dallas woman who had received injections at a salon to expand the size of her buttocks follows other cosmetic-related deaths in Texas and around the country that authorities say were caused by people who either weren't licensed or who injected substances not approved by federal regulators.

Family of alleged Facebook fraud fugitive to forfeit bail: U.S. judge

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:39

U.S. Marshals photo of fugitive Paul CegliaBy Nate Raymond NEW YORK (Reuters) - The family of a New York man who became a fugitive after being criminally charged with trying to defraud Facebook Inc founder Mark Zuckerberg out of half of the social media company was ordered on Tuesday to forfeit his bail. U.S. District Judge Vernon Broderick in Manhattan entered a $250,000 judgment against Paul Ceglia's parents and brother after previously revoking his bail. Broderick said he might reduce the penalty if the family helps locate Ceglia, who disappeared more than two weeks ago. A prosecutor said Ceglia could face new fraud and bail jumping charges soon.

UN committee approves benefits for spouses of gay staffers

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:22
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. will now give benefits to all spouses of gay U.N. staffers who are legally married after Russia and other opponents of same-sex marriage failed Tuesday in an attempt to scuttle the plan by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

First Image of Debris From Plane Crash in French Alps

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:18
An Airbus operated by Germanwings crashed in southern France with 150 people aboard, the airline confirmed.

Ex-coal boss pleads not guilty again in mine safety case

Yahoo! National News - Wed, 03/25/2015 - 01:09
BECKLEY, W.Va. (AP) — Former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship on Tuesday entered another plea of not guilty to federal charges stemming from the deadliest U.S. mine disaster in four decades.