Headline News

  • Alabama woman convicted of running granddaughter to death has died

    An Alabama woman convicted of murder in the running death of her 9-year-old granddaughter died on Friday, less than a year into her sentence of life in prison without parole, a prison spokesman said. Joyce Garrard, 50, was convicted last March in the 2012 death of Savannah Hardin. Garrard made Hardin run for almost three hours while carrying wood as punishment for lying about having eaten chocolates. The girl collapsed and went into seizures, later dying of dehydration and low sodium, prosecutors said. Garrard was pronounced dead in an Alabama hospital at 5:23 p.m., said Alabama Department of Corrections spokesman Bob Horton. She had suffered a heart attack in prison a few days earlier, said her defense attorney, Dani Bone. Bone said it had been a difficult time for the family. “I believe the family is going to be somewhat relieved with the thought that Joyce is going to be in heaven with Savannah and …

    February 12, 2016 9:40 pm


  • Some Candidates Mention Flint Crisis in Fundraising Appeals

    By Eli Yokley Posted at 8:30 p.m. on Feb. 12 0 Tweet  Weaver testified before Congress about the water issues in her city. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call) As Congress heard testimony from Flint’s mayor about the water crisis there, some House and Senate candidates sent out fundraising pitches to their email lists mentioning the Michigan city’s troubles. In an email to supporters in his competitive Maryland Senate primary race against Rep. Donna Edwards, Democratic Rep. Chris Van Hollen, linked to a webpage titled “Stand With Chris,” with a donate button at the top. It asked potential donors to “Join Chris in demanding justice” for Flint.   The Van Hollen campaign pointed to an Edwards email in which she provided her supporters a link to contribute directly to Flint victims. Like Van Hollen, Edwards asked supporters to “join” her – and if they do, they, too, are taken to a fundraising page for her campaign. Political fundraising pitches are not unusual, …

    February 12, 2016 9:00 pm


  • Bookstores record first rise in sales since 2007

    Bookstores recorded first increase in sales since 2007. In the book publishing world, what’s old is new again. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that bookstore sales rose by 2.5% from $10.89 billion to $11.17 billion in 2015, the first such increase in the industry since 2007. The figures were reported by Publishers Weekly, which also noted that eBook sales declined in 2015 while print sales went up. The Association of American Publishers spotted a similar trend during the first three quarters of 2015. From January until September of last year, the AAP reported that eBooks were down 11.1%. The group said most of the decline came in sales of children or young adult books, which saw a 44.8% decline in eBook sales. Paperback sales grew by 13.3% over the same period, according to the AAP. “When eBooks first appeared, their growth was exponential,” AAP spokeswoman Marisa Bluestone told CNNMoney. “While there are many …

    February 12, 2016 9:40 pm


  • Spurs must ‘play like lions’, says boss

    Spurs are still competing for the league, Europa League and FA Cup this season Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has urged his team to “play like lions” at Manchester City on Sunday. Spurs have not won the title since 1961, but are now second in the table, five points behind leaders Leicester. They beat City 4-1 at White Hart Lane in September and victory at Etihad Stadium would take them four points clear of Manuel Pellegrini’s side. “This is our challenge, to try to keep the same intensity in every game,” Pochettino said. Spurs have lost only three times in the league this season and last week’s home win against Watford was their sixth successive victory in all competitions. Hornets boss Quique Sanchez Flores described Tottenham as “like animals” and Pochettino was happy to extend the analogy. “I want them to play like lions – this is what all managers want and expect from their players, …

    February 12, 2016 10:00 pm

World News

  • Syria rebels pledge to keep fighting

    Image copyright AFP Image caption Syrian rebels have been put on the back foot by the government offensive in an around Aleppo Rebel groups in Syria have told the BBC they will not stop fighting because they do not believe that Russia will end its bombing campaign in support of the government. They have expressed scepticism over a deal by world powers to push for a cessation of hostilities within a week. They have also reiterated their demand that President Bashar al-Assad be removed from power. Earlier the president said he wanted to retake “the whole country” from rebels. Three Syrian rebel groups have expressed doubts to the BBC over the cessation of hostilities agreement: A spokesman for the Free Syrian Army said: “We remain sceptical all the time about the Russians.” The conservative Ahrar al-Sham group said that it would not stop fighting until government shelling stopped, safe border crossings were opened for civilians, …

    February 12, 2016 10:01 pm


  • Seattle law firm files first lawsuit against Apple over iPhone ‘error 53’

    A Seattle-based law firm has filed the first legal action against Apple after the Guardian revealed how the technology giant has been deliberately “killing” its customers’ iPhone 6s if they have had them repaired by a third party. Law firm PCVA said on Friday that it had brought a class-action lawsuit in the US district court for the northern district of California in response to Apple’s “error 53” iPhone controversy. Apple has faced a consumer backlash since the Guardian revealed how thousands of iPhone 6 users had been left with permanently disabled handsets after installing the latest iOS software. A UK barrister has said the policy may also be a criminal offence here. The Australian competition and consumer commission asked Apple for an explanation and said it was examining any breach of its consumer laws. Related: Apple under pressure as lawyers pledge action over ‘Error 53’ codes Darrell Cochran, PCVA’s lead attorney for the class …

    February 12, 2016 9:20 pm


  • New experimental test detects signs of Lyme disease near time of infection

    Related images(click to enlarge) When it comes to early diagnosis of Lyme disease, the insidious tick-borne illness that afflicts about 300,000 Americans annually, finding the proverbial needle in the haystack might be a far easier challenge–until now, perhaps. An experimental method developed by federal and university researchers appears capable of detecting the stealthy culprit Lyme bacteria at the earliest time of infection, when currently available tests are often still negative. The team suggests the approach might also be useful for early detection of other elusive bacterial infections. The collaborators–from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research, and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine–recently reported the successful first trial of their new method. “Our hypothesis was that Lyme bacteria shed vesicle-like particles–or fragments–derived from the cell wall of the bacteria circulating in the serum of individuals. These particles would contain membrane proteins that can be detected to provide a unique …

    February 12, 2016 8:00 pm


  • U.S. agencies to study safety of artificial turf fields

    WASHINGTON Three U.S. government agencies will team up to study whether artificial turf fields and playgrounds that use bits of recycled tires are exposing children to dangerous chemicals. The Environmental Protection Agency, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Friday they will study the issue, CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye said in a statement. “I am very pleased that we are joining forces to investigate crumb rubber, as millions of children are exposed to it on playground surfaces and as infill on playing fields,” he said. Limited studies have not shown an elevated health risk from playing on fields with the bits of recycled tires, known as tire crumb, but more comprehensive research is needed, EPA said in a news release. Artificial turf playing fields have become a popular alternative to grass fields for their durability, lower long-term cost and ease of maintenance. U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal and …

    February 12, 2016 8:40 pm


  • Spurs’ Gregg Popovich Lies About Being Friends With Drake

    The NBA All-Star Game is in Toronto so it’s almost a tribute to six god rapper, Drake. He’s coaching and partying. He’s being an ambassador, host, and attendee. Basically, Drake’s the center of attention. He even received the key to the city from Mayor John Tory.  Gregg Popovich is coaching the Western Conference team on Sunday. He is famously horrible with media but he has been great with the media so far in Toronto. When asked if Drake would outcoach him in the Celebrity All-Star Game, Pop replied, “Drake and I are tight. We won’t compete against each other too much.” Who knew Drake and Pop were close friends? It turns out, the friendship might not be tight as Pop claims. The San Antonio Spurs coach was then asked what his favorite Drake song was. This is where the lie starts to become evident.  “Me and @Drake are tight.” – Greg Popovich on favorite Drake song: “Not gonna say that Donald Trump …

    February 12, 2016 9:20 pm


  • How Russia controls American policy

    We’ve seen this movie—now playing in Syria– before.   The Russians have developed a way of getting the U.S. formally to permit offensive Russian military operations against American partners on the ground,  all the while calling it a ceasefire.   What the Russians are proposing in Syria—a “cessation of hostilities” on terms they get to define– is exactly what they have been doing in Eastern Ukraine for more than a year.   The Minsk II accords, signed in February 2015 between Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany, with the U.S. in support, supposedly established a “cessation of hostilities” across all of Ukraine.  But Russian proxies on the ground, with active Russian support, have continued to attack Ukrainian positions while loudly blaming the Ukrainians for violating the ceasefire.  Then as now, humanitarian concerns were a prime motive.  The West thought the Ukraine ceasefire would keep pro-Russian forces from seizing the town of Debal’tseve, then under siege.  But …

    February 12, 2016 7:20 pm

Odd News

  • Racy night with handcuffs lands Arkansas man in handcuffs, again

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. An Arkansas couple’s evening of “kinky” entertainment ended with one pair of handcuffs used for fun being replaced by another used for real in an arrest, police said on Friday. Dustin Taylor, 21, summoned police this week to his home in Fort Smith to remove a pair of handcuffs he told officers he and his wife had been using the previous night while “doing some ‘kinky’ things,” the official report stated. The couple had lost the key, Taylor explained. The responding patrolman removed the handcuffs and did a routine search of Taylor’s name in a police database. When the computer reported an outstanding warrant for Taylor on criminal mischief, handcuffs went back on. But this time they belonged to the officer. Sergeant Daniel Grubbs, spokesman for the Fort Smith police, expressed a measure of sympathy for Taylor. “I sort of wish the guy had invested in an extra handcuff key,” Grubbs said. …

    February 12, 2016 8:20 pm