• Downtown Project opens boutique hotel in Vegas

    Updated: 8 min ago

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — Visitors looking for a crash pad in downtown Las Vegas will find one at the recently re-opened Oasis at Gold Spike hotel near Fremont Street. The Downtown Project led by Zappos.com CEO Tony Hsieh (SHAY) announced the hotel's new look Tuesday, but didn't reveal renovation costs. The group bought it and the adjacent Gold Spike casino —built in 1962— for $27 million in 2013. Downtown Project is behind a three-year effort to revitalize the downtown Las Vegas area surrounding Fremont Street. Oasis is the group's first hotel property. The 38 rooms and six suites at the boutique hotel are called crash pads on the website. They cost $49 to $79 during the week and more than $100 and $200 on wee

  • Ebola airport checks expand; nurses get training

    Updated: 9 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal government is closing a gap in Ebola screening at airports while states from New York to Texas to California work to get hospitals and nurses ready in case another patient turns up somewhere in the U.S. with the deadly disease. Under the rule going into effect Wednesday, air travelers from the West African nations of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea must enter the United States through one of five airports doing special screenings and fever checks for Ebola. A handful of people had been arriving at other airports and missing the checks. A total of 562 air travelers have been checked in the screenings that started Oct. 11 at New York's Kennedy airport and expanded to four others last week, Homel

  • Doctors differ on preteen suspect's mental state

    Updated: 9 min ago

    WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) — Doctors disagree over whether the second of two 12-year-old girls charged with stabbing a classmate to please the fictional horror character Slender Man is fit to stand trial, a judge and attorneys said Wednesday. A state psychiatrist filed a report saying he found the girl mentally capable of helping with her defense, but defense attorney Joseph Smith Jr. questioned the state doctor's qualifications and said he had a report from another doctor who disagreed. Waukesha County Judge Michael Bohren scheduled another hearing for Dec. 18 because the state's doctor was not in court to testify Wednesday. Both sides are expected to call witnesses to testify then.

  • Bumgarner, Giants top Royals 7-1 in Series opener

    Updated: 9 min ago

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Win or lose, Jake Peavy is a treat to watch when he pitches. He scowls, he shouts, he grimaces, he grins. Never hard to tell how things are going for him. And depending how he does for the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday night against Kansas City rookie Yordano Ventura, this World Series could quickly shape up as an even match or a mismatch. Madison Bumgarner, who shows virtually no emotion on the mound, got the Giants off to a terrific start in Game 1. Given an early cushion by Hunter Pence's home run, the man called MadBum by his teammates carried a shutout into the seventh inning and beat the Royals 7-1 Tuesday night. "He doesn't get flustered out there," Giants manager Bruce Bochy s

  • Display of gruesome photos opens Arias retrial

    Updated: 10 min ago

    PHOENIX (AP) — Jurors at the sentencing retrial of convicted murderer Jodi Arias saw a series of gruesome photos that showed her ex-boyfriend's dead body crammed into a shower at his house — his throat slit. Lawyers warned jurors that they would see graphic crime-scene photos and sexually explicit images that Arias and former boyfriend Travis Alexander took of each other before Arias attacked him. "She loved him so much that this is what she did to him," prosecutor Juan Martinez said of one ghastly photo. He urged jurors to sentence Arias to death. Defense attorney Kirk Nurmi said Tuesday that Arias was the victim of profound sexual humiliation by Alexander and that she is mentally ill and a victim of child abuse.

  • Indiana man was violent long before 7 killings

    Updated: 11 min ago

    GARY, Ind. (AP) — With hindsight, there were signs years ago of increasing violence against women by Darren Vann, who police say has confessed to killing seven women in northwestern Indiana and is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday. Indiana court records from 2004 describe him grabbing a woman in a chokehold, dousing her with gasoline and threatening to set her on fire. He was sentenced to a year in prison. In 2009, he was convicted in Texas of raping a woman. She told police that at his apartment in Austin, he knocked her down, began to strangle her, hit her several times in the face and said he could kill her, court records show. He was released from prison last year and moved back to Indiana.

  • NBC promoting Weir, Lipinski to top skating team

    Updated: 12 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — NBC is promoting Johnny Weir and Tara Lipinski to its top figure skating broadcasting team. The network said Wednesday that the two former Olympians and play-by-play announcer Terry Gannon will take over the role starting with this week's Skate America. They replace Scott Hamilton, Sandra Bezic and Tom Hammond. Hamilton will remain a special contributor for NBC. Weir and Lipinski became an instant sensation during last winter's Sochi Games when they called live daytime broadcasts with Gannon on cable channel NBCSN in a new coverage approach by the network. Hamilton, Bezic and Hammond handled the tape-delayed prime-time telecast on NBC. The next Winter Olympics are in 2018 in South Korea.

  • Bomb explodes outside university in Egypt capital

    Updated: 12 min ago

    CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian security officials say a bomb has exploded outside Egypt's largest and most prominent university, injuring nine people including five policemen. They say the makeshift bomb went off Wednesday following clashes between police and students protesting outside the sprawling campus. One of the injured is a senior police officer and four are civilians, the official said. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters. Egyptian universities have seen regular protests since Islamist President Mohammed Morsi was ousted by the military last year. Clashes between students and police erupted again at the start of the school year earlier this month at several Egyptian u

  • Colorado girls make possible bid to join militants

    Updated: 12 min ago

    DENVER (AP) — Three teenage girls from suburban Denver flew to Europe in a possible bid to join Islamic State militants in Syria, and now authorities are looking at their friends to see if any have similar intentions. A U.S. official said the evidence gathered so far made it clear that the girls — two sisters, ages 17 and 15, and their 16-year-old friend — were headed to Syria, though the official said investigators were still trying to determine what sort of contacts they had in that country. The official said investigators would be trying to figure out whether there were "like-minded" friends and acquaintances in the girls' social circle. Another U.S.

  • Stocks edge up on earnings reports, Europe hopes

    Updated: 13 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Good news on corporate earnings nudged U.S. stocks mostly higher in early trading Wednesday, a day after the Standard and Poor's 500 index had its best day of the year. Investors were also encouraged by a government report showing U.S. inflation is low and by hopes for new stimulus measures from the European Central Bank. KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 14 points, or 0.1 percent, to 16,628 as of 10:15 a.m. Eastern time. The S&P 500 rose a point to 1,942 and the Nasdaq composite fell four points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,415. YAHOO SURGE: Yahoo jumped $2.58, or 6 percent, to $42.77 after reporting encouraging third-quarter results late Tuesday.

  • Police brutality claims shadow Tunisia elections

    Updated: 14 min ago

    TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — When Mohammed Ali Snoussi was arrested last month in Tunis, witnesses say, police beat him with truncheons, stripped him naked and threatened to rape him in broad daylight. The Interior Ministry said Snoussi was wanted for drug possession, trafficking and assaulting police. He lasted six days in police detention cells, before he was transferred to a hospital where he died in a coma, his body covered in bruises. Nearly four years after an uprising fueled largely by anger over police brutality overthrew one of the most repressive states in the region, ordinary Tunisians say daily abuses by security forces remain a major problem in the country.

  • New Mexico rule changing fracking water reuse eyed

    Updated: 14 min ago

    HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — State environmental regulators are considering a proposed rule that would allow the reuse of produced water in oilfield drilling operations. New Mexico Environment Department Secretary David Martin told Hobbs News-Sun (http://goo.gl/6dyY6f) this week that the department is working with the Oil Conservation Commission on the new rule that could help cut fresh water consumption by industry. The draft of that rule is expected sometime this month. Martin says the changes New Mexico is looking to adopt are similar to those used in Texas, where produced water is already being reused in drilling and hydraulic fracturing operations.

  • Iraqi Kurds authorize sending fighters to Kobani

    Updated: 15 min ago

    IRBIL, Iraq (AP) — The parliament of the Kurdish regional government in Iraq has voted to authorize sending Kurdish fighters known as peshmerga to the embattled town of Kobani in Syria. Peshmerga spokesman Halgurd Hekmat in Irbil said Wednesday there is still a lot of uncertainty on details, including how many forces will be sent and when. The vote comes two days after Turkey said it would help Iraqi Kurdish fighters cross into Syria to support their brethren fighting Islamic State militants in Kobani. Hekmat said Iraqi forces will also provide weapons, but he did not say what kind.

  • Police: Man shot at war memorial in Ottawa

    Updated: 15 min ago

    OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Police say a man believed to be a member of the Canadian Forces has been shot at National War Memorial, and there are reports of gunfire inside the halls of Parliament. Ottawa police confirmed they had a call at 9:52 a.m. with a report of shots fired. The gunman reportedly ran toward Parliament Hill, which is under lockdown. Emergency responders are on the scene. The incident comes just two days after two Canadian soldiers were run over — and one of them killed — in Quebec by a man with jihadist sympathies.

  • Australian finishes marathon swim in Bahamas

    Updated: 17 min ago

    NASSAU, Bahamas (AP) — Dehydrated and exhausted, Australian swimmer Chloe McCardel successfully completed a 78-mile (126-kilometer) swim Wednesday between two islands in the Bahamas. McCardel's support team says the 42 ½ hour effort is the longest open-water solo, continuous marathon swim in history, though such claims come with complications. The Marathon Swimmers Federation says it is difficult to compare marathon swims because of varying currents and other factors, including the fact that some previous efforts were not well documented. McCardel, a 29-year-old athlete from Melbourne, set out from the southern tip of Eleuthera island and reached the capital of Nassau at about 1 a.m. local time.

  • Canada police say a man shot at war memorial, reports of gunfire inside Parliament

    Updated: 19 min ago

    OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Canada police say a man shot at war memorial, reports of gunfire inside Parliament.

  • At Berlin Wall, Kerry warns against Cold War redux

    Updated: 25 min ago

    BERLIN (AP) — Surrounded by relics of the Cold War, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and his German counterpart warned Wednesday against a return to the bitter divide between east and west over the current crisis in Ukraine. Under gloomy skies and a steady rain, Kerry and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited one of the few remaining sections of the Berlin Wall. They emphasized that the West does not seek confrontation with Russia and implored Moscow to move quickly to fulfill the terms of an agreement to end the fighting in eastern Ukraine between the government and pro-Russian separatists. Ukraine accuses Moscow of aiding the separatists, a charge that Moscow denies.

  • Iranians protest acid attacks in central city

    Updated: 27 min ago

    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Hundreds of Iranians have rallied in the central city of Isfahan to protest a string of acid attacks on women there in recent months. Wednesday's rally is the latest in the public outcry that has followed the attacks, which are extremely rare in Iran. The attacks all had same pattern — an attacker on a motorbike throwing acid at women inside a passing car. According to the semiofficial Fars news agency, police chief Gen. Ismaeil Ahmadi Moghaddam says eight cases of acid attacks have been reported in Isfahan over the past few months. He says an ongoing police investigation suggests the attacker is a single individual. Police have already arrested four suspects in the case.

  • Feds loosen eligibility for parent loan program

    Updated: 28 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Education Department has loosened credit requirements for a federal student loan program used by parents and graduate students. A new regulation announced Wednesday updates the definition of adverse credit history as it pertains to the federal PLUS loan program. Under the rule, a potential borrower with overdue debt less than $2,085 is considered not to have adverse credit history. Others may still be able to participate if they pass additional steps, but must participate in loan counseling. In 2011, the department rolled out more restrictive requirements. Afterward, there was an outcry from Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which serve a low-income population and have seen thousands of stu

  • Total acts swiftly to replace CEO killed in crash

    Updated: 29 min ago

    PARIS (AP) — French oil giant Total SA has named Patrick Pouyanne as chief executive to replace Christophe de Margerie, who was killed earlier this week in a plane crash in Moscow. Barely 36 hours after de Margerie's death, Total's board chose Pouyanne, 51, at a board meeting Wednesday. The swift appointment indicates the board's desire to limit the uncertainty on one of France's biggest companies. In its statement, Total's board hailed De Margerie's "exceptional human and professional qualities." Pouyanne has led Total's refining and chemicals division since 2012. He has been with Total since 1997, starting off as head of exploration and production in Angola.