Archives for News

USA Today founder Al Neuharth dead at 89

Critics dubbed USA Today “McPaper” when it debuted in 1982, and they accused its founder, Al Neuharth, of dumbing down American journalism with its easy-to-read articles and bright graphics. Neuharth had the last laugh when USA Today became the nation’s most-circulated newspaper in the late 1990s. The hard-charging founder of USA Today died Friday in Cocoa Beach, Fla. He was 89. The news was announced by USA Today and by the Newseum, which he also founded. Jack Marsh, president of the Al Neuharth Media Center and a close friend, confirmed that he passed away Friday afternoon at his home. Marsh
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Boy Scouts will accept gay members but not gay scoutmasters

The Boy Scouts of America on Friday proposed lifting a ban on gay scouts but maintaining a prohibition on gay adults from leading troops, a compromise that attempts to end a fight that has split the century-old American institution into bitter factions. Reaction from scouting supporters ranged from outrage to limited approval. The biggest organization in scouts, the Mormon Church, said it was studying the proposal, leaving uncertain the outcome of a May vote by scout leaders that will set policy. Gay rights groups said continuing to bar gay adults was unacceptable, but they welcomed the change for youths. “The
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SWAT teams patrol Boston as manhunt for surviving bomber continues

SWAT teams in armored vehicles took command of the tense and locked-down streets of Boston and its suburbs Friday in an all-out hunt for the surviving Boston Marathon bombing suspect after his older brother died in a desperate getaway attempt. Law enforcement officials and family members identified the suspects as 19-year-old Massachusetts college student Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, still at large, and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, dead. The ethnic Chechen brothers from Russia lived near Boston and had been in the U.S. for about a decade, an uncle said. In a long night of violence that began Thursday evening, they shot and killed
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Empty streets as an uneasy Boston awaits result of manhunt

The Red Sox and the Bruins both scrapped their games. The famous Bull Market at Faneuil Hall was closed, and there were more pigeons than tourists on City Hall Plaza. Even the Starbucks at Government Center was shuttered. The killing of one suspected Boston Marathon bomber and the manhunt for another brought life in large swaths of the notoriously gridlocked Beantown to a screeching halt, leaving residents and tourists alike frustrated and angry. “It took me an hour and a half to find a coffee this morning,” Daniel Miller, a financier from New York, said as he wandered the desolate
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Cops kill one Boston Marathon bombing suspect in shootout; Second on the run

Two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing killed an MIT police officer, injured a transit officer in a firefight and threw explosive devices at police during their getaway attempt in a long night of violence that left one of them dead and another still at large Friday, authorities said as the manhunt intensified for a young man described as a dangerous terrorist. The suspects were identified to The Associated Press as coming from the Russian region near Chechnya, which has been plagued by an Islamic insurgency stemming from separatist wars. A law enforcement intelligence bulletin obtained by the AP identified
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With cameras everywhere, it’s hard to avoid detection

As the investigation of the Boston Marathon bombings illustrates, getting lost in the crowd is no longer an easy feat. There are eyes — and cameras — everywhere. Investigators swiftly obtained a vast quantity of amateur photos and videos taken by onlookers, often with their cell phones, as well as extensive footage from surveillance cameras in the area of the blasts. The FBI released images Thursday from one of those cameras, zeroing in on two men in caps who have become the suspects in the case. They’re seen walking together; the FBI said one of them later set down a
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Teen misidentified as marathon bombing suspect

A teenager said he is scared to go outside after he was portrayed on the Internet and on the front page of the New York Post as connected to the deadly Boston Marathon bombings. Photos of Salah Eddin Barhoum, 17, and friend Yassine Zaime were posted on websites whose users have been scouring marathon finish line photos for suspects. The two were also on the Post’s front Thursday with the headline: “Bag men: Feds seek these two pictured at Boston Marathon.” The Post reported later Thursday that the pair weren’t considered suspects, and the FBI has since identified two other
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Obama will use power of Presidency to expand background checks on guns

Blocked by Congress from expanding gun sale background checks, President Barack Obama is turning to actions within his own power to keep people from buying a gun who are prohibited for mental health reasons. Federal law bans certain mentally ill people from purchasing firearms, but not all states are providing data to stop the prohibited sales to the FBI’s background check system. A federal review last year found 17 states contributed fewer than 10 mental health records to the database, meaning many deemed by a judge to be a danger still could have access to guns. The Obama administration was
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Still unknown: How many died in massive Texas explosion

The neighborhood surrounding a Texas fertilizer plant that erupted in a thunderous explosion is gone, and the residents here know they’ve lost more than the buildings that went up in flames. Even as investigators were tight-lipped about the number of dead from the blast — authorities say more than 160 are injured but have not yet released a firm death toll — the names of the dead were becoming known in the town of 2,800, even if they hadn’t been officially released. Believed to be among them is a small group of firefighters and other first responders who may have
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After Senate defeat, gun control advocates vow to fight on

President Barack Obama and his gun control allies say Senate rejection of expanded background checks and other restrictions won’t stop their drive to reduce firearms violence. But their path to enacting gun curbs this year seems blocked by the National Rifle Association, and supporters of restrictions appear befuddled about what it will take to push legislation through this Congress. The Senate planned to vote Thursday on two more amendments to a gun control bill. One by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., would cut aid to state and local governments that release information on gun owners. Another by Sens. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa,
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