Headline News

  • Four of five escaped California inmates recaptured


    Four of the five inmates who escaped from a California county jail have been recaptured, authorities said.  Madera County sheriff’s spokeswoman Erica Stuart said late Saturday that the escapes had been recaptured, but did not immediately provide further details of their arrests. Stuart identified 29-year-old Roel Soliz of Chowchilla, Calif. as the inmate still at large.  ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT The other four inmates were identified at the time of the escape as Juan Lopez, 33; Abel Ramos, 25; Ricardo Cendejas, 19; and Jorge Lopez-Diaz, 26. Lopez had been imprisoned on armed robbery and attempted murder charges. Ramos and Cendejas were in jail for attempted murder and other charges, while Lopez-Diaz was in for robbery.  Soliz was in jail on charges of burglary, probation violation, and possession of a controlled substance. Stuart said he is to be considered armed and dangerous.  The inmates broke out of the Madera County Jail Friday evening and had been gone for …

    September 21, 2014 12:19 am
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Politics

  • Feds won’t talk about illegal border crossings


    Immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally stand in line for tickets at the bus station.(AP Photo/Eric Gay) The federal government refuses to say whether prosecutors in Yuma, Arizona, have scaled back a years-old program that guarantees jail time for most immigrants caught crossing the border illegally and which law enforcement officials say is crucial to public safety. Reports that federal prosecutors have stopped some prosecutions under Operation Streamline surfaced nearly two weeks ago when Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake wrote a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder seeking information on the status of the zero-tolerance program that circumvents the civil immigration system and lumps together months’ worth of criminal proceedings into one day for immigrants caught crossing the border illegally. Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot said in a letter to the senators that he had been informed that federal prosecutors in Yuma are no longer going after first offenders. But the government has …

    September 21, 2014 1:00 am
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Stocks

  • As open enrollment nears, Obamacare website still isn’t totally safe


      Healthcare.gov still isn’t as safe as it should be, and the annual open enrollment period starts again in just two months. To be clear: Hackers haven’t stolen sensitive data from the Obamacare site. But ongoing security and privacy issues plague Healthcare.gov, potentially putting your personal information at risk. A report by the investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office, shows why the Obamacare website has room for improvement: Security tests aren’t complete. Health officials aren’t conducting full, system-wide exams to make sure everything works together safely. The Obamacare website didn’t require strong passwords. The website didn’t patch bugs quickly enough. The system didn’t restrict test servers from accessing the Internet. That last one sounds innocuous, but it’s why the Obamacare site was hacked this summer. A test server — that was never supposed to be connected to the Internet — got infected with malware. Luckily, the malware was the kind that spews spam, …

    September 20, 2014 11:59 pm
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Sports

  • Sprint car racer dies in wreck at Wisconsin dirt track


    (Reuters) – A sprint race car driver died after crashing during practice at a Wisconsin dirt track on Saturday, the raceway said in a statement. Scott Semmelmann, 47, died from his injuries after crashing during a practice session around 6:00 p.m., the Beaver Dam Raceway said on its website. Organizers canceled the rest of the night’s events, which were part of a Midwest racing tour called the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Car Series, out of respect for Semmelmann’s friends and family, the statement said. Further information on the crash was not immediately available. Last month, 20-year-old driver Kevin Ward Jr. was struck and killed by NASCAR champion Tony Stewart after stepping out of his his vehicle during a sprint car race in upstate New York. (Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

    September 21, 2014 12:19 am
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World News

  • 66,000 Syrians flee into Turkey


    20 September 2014 Last updated at 23:21 Please turn on JavaScript. Media requires JavaScript to play. Rami Ruhayem on Turkey’s border with Syria: “This is quickly becoming the Turkish border with the Islamic State” Some 66,000 refugees – mainly Syrian Kurds – have crossed into Turkey in 24 hours, officials say, as Islamic State militants advance in northern Syria. Turkey opened its border on Friday to Syrians fleeing the Kurdish town of Kobane in fear of an IS attack. The UN refugee agency said it was boosting relief efforts as hundreds of thousands more could cross the border. IS controls large areas of Syria and Iraq, and has seized dozens of villages around Kobane, also called Ayn al-Arab. Turkey – which shares a border with Iraq and Syria – has taken in more than 847,000 refugees since the uprising against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad began three years ago. But the opening of the border has …

    September 21, 2014 12:19 am
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Technology

  • Is it worth upgrading to an iPhone 6? How to preserve the life of your laptop battery? Your tech questions answered


    Q I’m thinking of upgrading to an iPhone 6 – the 4G phone and plans are significantly more expensive; are they worth it? Josh, via email A This is a question of two parts as the merits of the iPhone 6 and 4G technology are quite separate. 4G is short for fourth generation telecommunications technology, a successor to 3G. It has the potential to offer connection speeds that exceed that of the average home internet connection and could potentially replace an ADSL connection for many people (the IMT-A standard sets the peak speeds as somewhere between 100 Mbit/s and 1Gbit/s). In my personal usage I’ve found EE and Three both offer around 20-40Mbit/s with a good signal although your speeds may vary, although I’ve replaced my home internet connection by tethering my laptop to my Three 4G smartphone. The downside of 4G is that on data plans that don’t provide unlimited data, you run out …

    September 21, 2014 1:00 am
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Science

  • UChicago-Argonne National Lab team improves solar-cell efficiency


    Related images(click to enlarge) New light has been shed on solar power generation using devices made with polymers, thanks to a collaboration between scientists in the University of Chicago’s chemistry department, the Institute for Molecular Engineering, and Argonne National Laboratory. Researchers identified a new polymer — a type of large molecule that forms plastics and other familiar materials — which improved the efficiency of solar cells. The group also determined the method by which the polymer improved the cells’ efficiency. The polymer allowed electrical charges to move more easily throughout the cell, boosting the production of electricity — a mechanism never before demonstrated in such devices. “Polymer solar cells have great potential to provide low-cost, lightweight and flexible electronic devices to harvest solar energy,” said Luyao Lu, graduate student in chemistry and lead author of a paper describing the result, published online last month in the journal Nature Photonics. Solar cells made from polymers are …

    September 20, 2014 9:16 pm
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Health

  • Sierra Leone burial team attacked despite lockdown


    FREETOWN (Reuters) – A team burying Ebola victims was attacked in Sierra Leone’s capital on Saturday, a member of parliament said, as a small group defied a three-day lockdown aimed at halting the worst outbreak of the disease on record. In one of the most extreme measures since the epidemic began, Sierra Leone has ordered its population of 6 million to stay indoors as volunteers circulate to educate residents about the disease as well as isolate the sick and remove the dead. Residents have mostly complied with the measures announced by President Ernest Bai Koroma earlier this week. On the second day of the lockdown, the streets were mostly deserted, except for ambulances and police vehicles. The attack on the burial team on Saturday occurred in the village of Matainkay, some three miles from the Waterloo district of Freetown. Claude Kamanda, MP for the Waterloo district, said that armed policemen accompanying the burial team quickly …

    September 21, 2014 1:00 am
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Entertainment

  • 16 Hottest and under-appreciated celebrity hunks of 2014


    1. Luke Benward He’s come quite a long way since How to Eat Fried Worms. And with all the hype behind his new movie Field of Shoes, Luke Benward has been stunning us with his adorable smile all year. 2. Austin Stowell This Dolphin Tale star is the main reason I’m considering watching Dolphin Tale 2 this year. Just look at Austin Stowell carrying that puppy. Cast of Dolphin Tale 2: “Don’t compare us to SeaWorld” 3. Noah Huntley No one rocks the manly-man scruff quite like Noah Huntley. This English actor is making a return, after his success in Snow White and the Huntsmen, to the role of Captain Petru in Dracula Untold this year. 4. Boyd Holbrook Photo Credit: Jeff Vespa / WireImage / Getty Images Boyd Holbrook has been incredibly busy this year with The Skeleton Twins and filming for Gone Girl, Jane Got a Gun and many others. Watch Bill Hader …

    September 21, 2014 12:39 am
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Editorial

Odd News

  • Armed with banana, man robs Philadelphia store, slips away on bike


    PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – A man armed with a banana robbed a convenience store in Philadelphia and rode away on a bicycle with cash and cigarettes, a security surveillance tape showed. The suspect strolled into Tejada Grocery and got in line behind another customer at the counter, where individual bananas were available for sale, according to the tape of Tuesday’s robbery, which was released by police on Wednesday. As his turn at the cash register approached, the man stuffed a banana into the pocket of his hoodie and used it to simulate a gun. Police said the man demanded cash and cigarettes. The robber rode then away on a bicycle, surveillance video showed. Authorities, who did not say how much cash was taken, said the suspect was still being sought on Thursday. (Editing by Barbara Goldberg)

    September 20, 2014 12:46 am
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