• Suspect in 5 Kansas City deaths pleads not guilty


    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A man accused of attacking and killing five people during a rampage in a quiet Kansas City neighborhood pleaded not guilty Monday to charges of first-degree murder for each victim. Brandon Howell, 34, didn't speak during a brief hearing in Jackson County Court, but attorney Patrick Berrigan said his client was denying all 12 charges he faced. Prosecutors have said Howell assaulted 86-year-old Anna Taylor and her 80-year-old husband in their home Sept. 2, before he stole their SUV and fatally shot neighbors who happened to be outside. Authorities have declined to discuss a motive for the attacks, noting only that charges against Howell include burglary and car theft.

  • Teens punished for prank on autistic classmate


    CLEVELAND (AP) — Three teens who admitted to dumping urine, tobacco and spit on a 15-year-old autistic classmate during an ice bucket prank were ordered Monday to do community service and write apology letters to the victim and his family. The teens admitted to charges of assault and disorderly conduct in juvenile court, said Joseph Frolik, a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County prosecutor's office. The autistic teen thought he was participating in the ice bucket challenge for charity when the boys dumped the bucket on him in August. The prank attracted nationwide attention after the autistic teen's mother found a video of it on his cellphone and allowed media outlets to publicize it. The teens all live in the Cleveland

  • Obama awards Presidential Medal of Freedom to 18


    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama on Monday bestowed America's highest civilian honor on trailblazers in the arts, sports and politics, along with a couple of entertainers who are among his personal favorites. The 18 notables who gathered in the White House East Room to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom left even the president himself in awe. Obama said the ceremony is one of his favorite events because it celebrates "people who have made America stronger and wiser and more humane and more beautiful." He revealed the first record he ever bought was by honoree Stevie Wonder and confessed a crush on Meryl Streep, gushing about her ability to promote empathy on and off the screen through charitable works.

  • Veteran journalist, educator Michael Shanahan dies


    WASHINGTON (AP) — Michael Shanahan, a veteran Washington political reporter for The Associated Press and Newhouse Newspapers who used that experience to teach new generations of students at George Washington University about the business he loved, died Saturday. Frank Sesno, director of George Washington's School of Media and Public Affairs, said Shanahan died Saturday morning, surrounded by family, after suffering a severe stroke earlier in the week. "We are all devastated by this news," Sesno said in a letter to students, faculty and staff. "Professor Shanahan was an unshakable friend and advocate of the School of Media and Public Affairs. He brought a reporter's eye and a professor's dedication to his work." Sesno

  • Attorney: Ferguson grand jury announcement to come Monday

    By DAVID A. LIEB and ANDALE GROSS | Yesterday

    FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — A grand jury has reached a decision about whether to indict a Ferguson police officer in the shooting death of Michael Brown, a spokesman for St. Louis County’s top prosecutor said Monday. The panel has been considering charges against Darren Wilson, the white suburban St. Louis officer who fatally shot the black 18-year-old after a confrontation in August. In a brief email to reporters, spokesman Ed Magee said the decision would be announced later Monday. He offered no immediate details. The prosecutor’s office has told Brown’s relatives that the decision will be made public after 5 p.m., family attorney Benjamin Crump told The Associated Press. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon was

  • Budweiser gives Clydesdales holiday pink slip


    NEW YORK (AP) — Budweiser is putting its Clydesdales out to pasture for the holidays. The country's No. 3 beer brand said the horses will not play a role in its traditional advertising for the season, although the company added later Monday that they will be featured in spots promoting responsible drinking. Anheuser-Busch InBev also said the Clydesdales will return to be part of its upcoming Super Bowl ads. "The Clydesdales play a strong role for the brand, representing Budweiser quality and care for more than 80 years. As icons of the brand — and relevant symbols of integrity, perfection and team spirit for all generations — they are important to the brand and our campaigns," Anheuser-Busch said in a statement Monday.

  • Oklahoma football: Quarterback Trevor Knight will miss third straight week of practice

    Jason Kersey | Published: Mon, Nov 24, 2014

    NORMAN — Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said Monday that quarterback Trevor Knight will be held out of practice again this week while he recovers from a neck injury. “Our doctors continue to evaluate him week to week,” Stoops said. “They still don’t want him to be out on the field yet this week and they […]

  • Downtown boulevard will alter travel, development in Oklahoma City

    By Steve Lackmeyer, Business Writer | Yesterday

    With path settled, clues to the development of the area emerge.

  • Oklahoma state treasurer says $37 million in unclaimed death benefits are owed to Oklahomans

    By Rick M. Green, Capitol Bureau | Yesterday

    Oklahoma Treasurer Ken Miller links people to lost property through the state’s unclaimed property fund, and $14 million has already been reported to the fund. He expects to turn up $23 million more from examinations of insurance companies. Some insurance companies would like to retain this money rather than see it placed in the unclaimed property fund, he said.

  • Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook participate in 'most' of Thunder practice

    Anthony Slater | Published: Mon, Nov 24, 2014

    Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook participated in ‘most’ of Thunder practice on Monday afternoon, including contact drills for the first time since their injuries. “They did participate and looked good,” Scott Brooks said. The superstar duo continues an accelerated path toward recovery, with each expected to return at some point during the early part of their […]

  • OKC Thunder: Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook participate in contact portions of practice

    staff reports | Published: Mon, Nov 24, 2014

    Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks said Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook participated in the majority of the team's practice today, including some contact portions, per The Oklahoman's  Darnell Mayberry and Anthony Slater . Even though both are practicing, per NBA rules regarding the hardship exception,  neither are eligible to return to the lineup until Friday (vs. New York Knicks) at the earliest. Mayberry explained the hardship exception in relation to the duo's return in his Saturday piece: The positives within their progression, coupled with the Thunder’s increasingly unsatisfactory record, are indications that both could return sooner than expected. It’s possible the Thunder is targeting Friday’s home game against New York for Westbrook’s return. It would be the day before his originally scheduled evaluation date. It’s also the earliest either player — or fellow injured teammates Mitch McGary and Grant Jerrett — can return due to the NBA’s hardship rules. The league granted the Thunder an additional roster spot above the maximum of 15, which the Thunder used to sign point guard Ish Smith. The supplemental spot is available in 10-day stretches, and Smith’s second 10 days expire Thanksgiving. Durant and Westbrook  partcipated in some non-contact portions of Thunder practice on Saturday. The duo hasn't played together at all this season, as Durant (foot) has missed the entire regular season thusfar, and Westbrook (hand) has played in just two games. The Thunder has started the season 3-12.

  • Israel leader vows to pass nationality law


    JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's prime minister vowed Monday to pass a contentious nationality law that has threatened the stability of his fragile coalition government, but he left the door open for negotiations to soften it. The bill formally would identify Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people. But language favored by hard-liners has drawn racism accusations, been questioned by Israel's attorney general and prompted the justice minister to warn that the coalition could fall apart. Addressing his Likud Party, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he was determined to pass it.

  • University president quits amid rape remark furor


    LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, Pa. (AP) — A Pennsylvania university says its president has resigned after he was criticized for comments he made about women and sexual assault. Lincoln University's board of trustees said it accepted Robert Jennings' resignation Monday morning. The university named general counsel Valerie Harrison as acting president. Jennings apologized earlier this month for his comments at an all-women's convocation in September about how false rape allegations can ruin a young man's life. Portions of the remarks were posted online and some parents criticized them as appearing to blame women for sexual assault. Board chair Kimberly Lloyd announced Jennings' departure in a letter posted to the university'

  • No-bid Texas Medicaid fraud contracts raising questions


    As Texas’ top health officials steer $110 million in no-bid contracts to an Austin tech company they say is revolutionizing Medicaid fraud investigations, the state’s top contract manager says those contracts are too loosely written and raise questions about what taxpayers are receiving in return. “It’s just so generic,” said Mary Cheryl Dorwart, a top contract official at the Department of Information Resources, the state’s primary vehicle for purchasing everything from printers to telecommunications software. Dorwart was referring to the state’s initial contract with 21CT, a cyberdefense contractor that, despite having no prior experience with Medicaid, was tapped by state Medicaid fraud investigators in 2012

  • Mom charged with trying to kill baby left in drain


    SYDNEY (AP) — A 30-year-old Australian has been charged with trying to kill her newborn son by abandoning him in a roadside drain for five days before passers-by heard his cries, police said Monday. The week-old baby was in serious but stable condition in Westmead Children's Hospital a day after cyclists found him in a 2.5-meter (8-foot) deep drain beside the M7 Motorway in the Sydney suburb of Quakers Hill, police said in a statement. He was malnourished and dehydrated but had no apparent physical injury, police have said. His mother, Saifale Nai, did not appear in court to answer the attempted murder charge. Her lawyer did not enter a plea and the magistrate formally refused her bail. Nai will remain in custod

  • Anxieties mount as Ferguson waits on grand jury

    Updated: Sun, Nov 23, 2014

    FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Despite preparations for a weekend decision in the Ferguson shooting case, the grand jurors apparently need more time to deliberate, and the uncertainty just seemed to feed the anxiety and speculation Sunday in a city already on edge. More than 3½ months have passed since police Officer Darren Wilson, who is white, killed unarmed black 18-year-old Michael Brown after a confrontation in the middle of a street in the St. Louis suburb. The shooting triggered riots and looting, and police responded with armored vehicles and tear gas.

  • List of winners of the American Music Awards

    Updated: Sun, Nov 23, 2014

    Winners of the 2014 American Music Awards, presented Sunday at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles: Artist of the year: One Direction New artist of the year: 5 Seconds of Summer Single of the year: Katy Perry feat.

  • One Direction wins artist of the year at AMAs

    Updated: Sun, Nov 23, 2014

    One Direction has won the American Music Award for artist of the year. Competition in the category was tough, with Iggy Azalea, Beyoncé, Luke Bryan, Eminem, Imagine Dragons, John Legend, Lorde, Katy Perry and Pharrell Williams up for the honor. The final prize of the night was the third award the British boy band claimed during Sunday's ceremony. One Direction also claimed trophies for favorite pop/rock duo or group and pop/rock album for "Midnight Melodies.

  • Islamic State group recruits, exploits children

    Updated: Sun, Nov 23, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — Teenagers carrying weapons stand at checkpoints and busy intersections in Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul. Patched onto the left arms of their black uniforms are the logos of the Islamic Police. In Raqqa, the Islamic State group's de facto capital in Syria, boys attend training camp and religious courses before heading off to fight. Others serve as cooks or guards at the extremists' headquarters or as spies, informing on people in their neighborhoods. Across the vast region under IS control, the group is actively conscripting children for battle and committing abuses against the most vulnerable at a young age, according to a growing body of evidence assembled from residents, activists, independent experts an

  • Civic group: No Ferguson grand jury decision yet

    Updated: Sun, Nov 23, 2014

    FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Crews erected barricades Saturday around the building where a grand jury has been considering whether to indict the Ferguson police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown, even as a grand jury decision seemed unlikely this weekend. Tension has been mounting in Ferguson and elsewhere in the St. Louis area in recent days, with many speculating that the grand jury's decision would be announced on Sunday. That seemed increasingly unlikely by late Saturday, although there was a noticeable uptick in the preparations being made. Downtown STL Inc., a St.