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Yahoo! National News

Houston arson investigators probe fire at Islamic center

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:24
Houston Fire Department arson investigators are probing a blaze that destroyed a building at an Islamic institute in the city on Friday, officials said. There has been no official determination yet of what caused the fire that hit the Quba Islamic Institute in the pre-dawn hours of Friday, fire officials said, adding no one was injured in the incident. The Texas office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called for authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for the fire that the group sees as an apparent arson attack. The Houston fire comes days after a gunman shot dead three young Muslims near the University of North Carolina, riling Muslim activists who have demanded that U.S. state and federal authorities investigate the detained suspect for possible hate crimes.

Mexico condemns fatal shooting by police in Washington state

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:22
The Mexican government is condemning this week's fatal shooting by police in Washington state of a Mexico-born man who had thrown rocks at officers in an incident captured on video. Mexico's Foreign Affairs Ministry called for an exhaustive investigation of the killing of Antonio Zambrano-Montes in the city of Pasco, about 200 miles (320 km) southeast of Seattle, and said it is offering legal advice to relatives of the victim, who was originally from Michoacan state. The shooting comes amid heightened tension over policing in the United States after incidents including the killings of two unarmed black men last year by white police officers in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson and New York City. "Mexico's government strongly condemns incidents in which lethal force is used disproportionately," the ministry said in a statement late on Thursday.

Illinois comptroller refuses to implement anti-union order

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:12
By Mary Wisniewski CHICAGO (Reuters) - Illinois' comptroller will not implement an anti-union executive order issued by the state's new Republican governor earlier this week, the state's attorney general's office said on Friday. Leslie Munger, a fellow Republican who was appointed by Governor Bruce Rauner, is following current law in not enforcing Rauner's order to eliminate "fair share" fees for about 6,500 state employees, said a spokeswoman for Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. "We agree with the comptroller's assessment and actions in that fair share fees are applicable under current law," said Natalie Bauer, spokeswoman for Madigan, a Democrat.

Can attorney general investigate Google? Judge to decide

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:10
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Does Google help criminals by allowing its search engine to lead to pirated music or by having its autocomplete function suggest illegal activities?

Oregon man admits helping people linked to Pakistan suicide bombing

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:03
(Reuters) - An Oregon man pleaded guilty on Friday to being an accessory after the fact for helping people linked to a suicide bomb attack on the headquarters of Pakistan's intelligence service in 2009 that killed about 30 people, court records showed. Reaz Qadir Khan, a naturalized U.S. citizen living in Portland, admitted in a plea entered in U.S. District Court that he provided advice and financial aid to the suicide bomber's Maldives-based wives following the attack, knowing that such assistance would hinder and prevent their capture. Khan, a 51-year-old wastewater treatment plant operator and married father-of-three originally from Pakistan, was arrested in 2013 on an indictment which accused him of using email and intermediaries to consult with and provide financial support to the Maldivian bomber, Ali Jaleel, and his family. The indictment said the conspiracy began in 2005 and continued on through the May 27, 2009, attack on Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence headquarters in Lahore and into the following month.

Ex-Wells Fargo banker gets 5 years for insider trading ring

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 07:02
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a former Wells Fargo Securities investment banker, his stockbroker friend and a network of friends and family were sentenced to prison after using insider information to pocket $11 million.

Oklahoma ex-deputy to stand trial in sexual battery case

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:59

In this photo provided by the Tulsa County Jail shows former Tulsa County sheriff's deputy Gerald Nuckolls. Nuckolls is charged with three counts of sexual battery and single counts of outraging public decency and indecent exposure. Prosecutors say Nuckolls sexually assaulted at least two women while on duty. He has pleaded not guilty. He is due in court Friday, Feb. 13, 2015. (AP Photo/Tulsa County Jail via Tulsa World)TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A former Oklahoma sheriff's deputy accused of sexually assaulting at least two women while on duty was ordered Friday to stand trial in the case.


FAA orders inspections after fatal Colorado chopper crash

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:57
DENVER (AP) — The Federal Aviation Administration has grounded more than 300 Enstrom helicopters nationwide until they can be inspected for possible cracks like the one that may have caused a crash last month that killed two people in Colorado.

Environmental groups sue predator control agency in Idaho

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:57
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Five conservation groups that contend federal officials in Idaho are violating environmental laws by killing wolves, coyotes and other wildlife to protect livestock and crops have filed a federal lawsuit.

Princeton plastic bag ban proposal drawing praise, criticism

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:56

Princeton plastic bag ban proposal drawing praise, criticismIt's estimated that Mercer County uses 183 million plastic bags each year. Activists in Princeton say that huge number is polluting the environment.


Two dead in shooting at New Orleans Mardi Gras parade

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:52
By Jonathan Kaminsky NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) - Two people were killed in a shooting during a popular parade in New Orleans, police said on Friday, in an event shaking the city as it prepares for additional revelry culminating in Mardi Gras on Tuesday. The shooting comes as officials have stepped up efforts to fight violent crime in the city. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu commended the police department for acting swiftly to apprehend the suspect, identified as John Hicks, 19. "We've seen this iteration of violence before, where young men get in an argument over something that's seemingly not worth it." New Orleans has long been plagued by a murder rate among the highest in the United States, though the number of killings dropped sharply in 2013 and moderately in 2014 to a total of 150, according to city figures.

Sidelined helicopter disrupts service to Alaska village

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:51
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The only flight service to a remote Alaska island village has been cut off for three weeks because a designated helicopter was sidelined by maintenance work, but the service provider said Friday the aircraft is expected to be returned to service Saturday.

Obama denounces 'outrageous murders' of three U.S. Muslims

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:50

President Barack Obama speaks during a summit on cybersecurity and consumer protection, Friday, Feb. 13, 2015, at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif. The president said cyberspace is the new "wild West" _ with daily attempted hacks and people looking to the government to be the sheriff. He's asking the private sector to do more to help. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)By Colleen Jenkins WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday described the deaths of three young Muslims gunned down in North Carolina this week as "brutal and outrageous murders" and said no one in the United States should be targeted for their religion. The president's statement came as the U.S. Justice Department said it would join the FBI's preliminary inquiry to determine whether the man accused in the Chapel Hill shooting on Tuesday broke any federal laws, including hate crime laws. The families had called on Obama to insist that federal authorities investigate whether the murder suspect, 46-year-old paralegal student Craig Stephen Hicks, was motivated by hatred toward the victims because they were Muslim. Newlywed Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, a University of North Carolina dental student, his wife, Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21, and her sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19, a student at North Carolina State University, were killed in a condominium about two miles (three km) from the UNC campus.


Vermont woman who helped husband kill prep teacher gets life

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:49
ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (AP) — A woman convicted along with her husband of killing a prep school teacher in 2012 after they decided "to get a girl" was sentenced Friday to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Tips, tricks and gadgets for staying warm

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:44

Tips, tricks and gadgets for staying warmFrom plain old long-johns to high-tech toys, there are plenty of ways to stay warm on this bitterly cold weekend.


Ex-U.S. soldier 'Rambo' pleads guilty in murder-for-hire case

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:33
By Joseph Ax NEW YORK (Reuters) - A former U.S. soldier accused of recruiting an international team of military-trained snipers to carry out contract killings for a drug cartel pleaded guilty in New York federal court on Friday. Joseph Manuel Hunter, 49, who prosecutors said was known as "Rambo," faces between 10 years and life in prison when he is sentenced in May for conspiring to murder a law enforcement officer and two other charges. Hunter, thinking of his family, decided to avoid a trial scheduled for March 9 despite believing the government unlawfully entrapped him, his defense lawyer Marlon Kirton said after Friday's hearing. Hunter, who served as a sniper instructor in the U.S. Army, is the fourth defendant to plead guilty after former U.S. Army Sergeant Timothy Vamvakias, former German sniper Dennis Gogel and former Polish sniper Slawomir Soborski.

Phillies gear ships out for Spring Training

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:31

Phillies gear ships out for Spring TrainingOn a brutally cold day in South Philadelphia, a truck pulled up Citizens Bank Park, destined for warmer temperatures.


Gay couple sues to force Indiana to name both on son's birth record

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:30
A married same-sex couple on Friday asked a federal court to force Indiana state and county officials to name both of the women as parents on their newborn son's birth certificate. Ashlee and Ruby Henderson were married in November in Indiana and Ruby Henderson gave birth in December to a son through artificial insemination, but state and local officials have refused to list both as parents on his birth certificate. Tippecanoe Department of Health officials told the Lafayette couple it would take a court order to list Ashlee Henderson as a parent on the birth certificate, the couple said in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in southern Indiana.

Man accused of shooting 3 people dead at barbershop arrested

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:26

This undated photo released by the Warrensville Heights Police Department shows Douglas Shine Jr. Police officers and government agents surrounded a house in Cleveland early Friday, Feb. 13, 2015 and arrested Shine, a man they suspect killed three people and injured three others in a suburban barbershop shooting last week, officials said. (AP Photo/Warrensville Heights Police Department)WARRENSVILLE HEIGHTS, Ohio (AP) — A team of police officers and government agents surrounded a house early Friday and arrested a man they suspect killed three people and injured three others in a barbershop shooting last week, officials said.


Majority of Alabama counties issuing marriage licenses to gay couples

Yahoo! National News - Sat, 02/14/2015 - 06:20

Supporters of same-sex marriage hold signs outside the Jefferson County Courthouse in BirminghamOfficials in 24 Alabama counties began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples on Friday, gay rights advocates said, a day after a U.S. judge ordered one local official to issue licenses to gay couples in accordance with an earlier ruling. The shift means that a majority of Alabama counties are now granting licenses to same-sex couples. It also indicates that defiance to a federal ruling striking down the state's gay marriage ban is weakening, as fewer local judges follow a contravening order from the chief justice of Alabama's Supreme Court. "These numbers represent a seismic shift in favor of equality and justice," said Fred Sainz, a spokesman for the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights group, in a statement.