Top Stories


  • APNewsBreak: Ecuador expels US military group

    Updated: 18 min ago

    QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Ecuador has ordered all 20 Defense Department employees in the U.S. Embassy's military group to leave the country by month's end, The Associated Press has learned. The group was ordered to halt operations in Ecuador in a letter dated April 7, said embassy spokesman Jeffrey Weinshenker. The AP was first alerted to the expulsions by a senior Ecuadorean official who refused to be identified by name due to the information's sensitive nature. President Rafael Correa had publicly complained in January that Washington had too many military officers in Ecuador, claiming there were 50, and said they had been "infiltrated in all sectors." At the time, he said he planned to order some to leave.

  • Military jury convicts Marine in prostitute murder

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    KANEOHE, Hawaii (AP) — A military jury has convicted a Marine of murdering a prostitute visiting Hawaii, then dumping her body about 40 miles away in west Oahu. Master Sgt. Nathaniel Cosby was convicted Thursday of murder, obstruction of justice and patronizing a prostitute. His court martial will move into a sentencing phase on Saturday, when Cosby's lawyers will call character witnesses. Cosby was found guilty of murder while engaging in an inherently dangerous act, which carries the possibility of life in prison without parole. He was found not guilty of unpremeditated murder. Cosby admitted to killing Ivanice "Ivy" Harris in May last year, but his lawyers argued it was in self-defense.

  • More U.S. Senate donors remain anonymous

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Thu, Apr 24, 2014

    Organizations have spent more than $100,000 on ads running in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, but public information is hard to come by and the leader of one group is apparently shy about commenting.

  • Pellet gun firing causes Navy base lockdown

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    SAN DIEGO (AP) — A major Navy base ground to a halt for about two hours Thursday after a report of a man seen waving a weapon led to the detention of a sailor who fired a gun that shoots soft plastic pellets. The sailor, whose name was not released, told authorities that he fired his weapon at a mirror in a parking garage from his barracks' window, said Capt. Scott Adams, commanding officer of Naval Base Point Loma. Pellets were recovered near the mirror All base personnel were ordered inside and told to stay away from windows and doors after Adams received a call around 10 a.m. PDT that someone was brandishing a weapon inside the barracks. The alleged shooter went to a nearby room in the barracks to join another serviceman

  • Fresh reports of sexual misconduct undercut Pentagon's argument for internal fix

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    (c) 2014, The Washington Post. WASHINGTON — For more than a year, U.S. military officials have admitted they have a serious problem with sexual assault and harassment in the ranks. They've pleaded with the White House, Congress and the public to trust commanders to fix it on their own terms. But the Pentagon's argument has been badly undercut by fresh reports of senior commanders bungling cases, or coming under investigation themselves. On Wednesday, the Navy acknowledged that it reassigned the former commander of its elite Blue Angels flight squadron after it received a complaint that he tolerated sexual harassment, hazing and lewd behavior.

  • UN Yemen envoy says rebel group agrees to talks

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. envoy to Yemen says the country's president and Shiite rebels have agreed to discuss the group's disarming. Jamal Benomar told reporters Thursday that the Hawthis agreed to a new initiative by President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi to promote dialogue related to the rebels' "disarmament, demobilization and reintegration." The Shiite Hawthis led a six-year insurgency in the north that officially ended in 2010, but a recent escalation in fighting with ultraconservative Sunni tribesmen turned several northern cities into war zones. Benomar also warned that al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula "remains a very real and lethal threat" in Yemen. On Sunday and Monday, the country's military, repor

  • Bolivia fires hundreds of protesting soldiers

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivia's military leaders on Thursday ordered the dismissal for sedition of 702 enlisted men who had been protesting to demand they have the option of rising to the rank of officer. The army, navy and air force said in a statement that they have ordered the dismissal of the soldiers because they "committed acts of sedition, rebellion, conducted political actions and attacked the honor of the Armed Forces." The unprecedented military protest began on Tuesday with 500 soldiers, but expanded to about 1,000 on Thursday. Non-commissioned officers and sergeants marched through the capital of La Paz dressed in camouflage uniforms, together with some of their wives and Aymara indigenous leaders who supported

  • DHS sec'y puts ex-watchdog on leave after report

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The secretary of the Homeland Security Department put the agency's former internal watchdog on administrative leave Thursday following the release of a Senate report that concluded he was too cozy with senior agency officials and improperly rewrote, delayed or classified some critical reports to accommodate President Barack Obama's political appointees. Secretary Jeh Johnson said Charles K. Edwards, who was allowed to quietly resign and take another job within the department in December, was put on leave after Johnson reviewed the 27-page report from a Senate Homeland Security subcommittee.

  • [BC-MCT-NEWS-BJT]

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    (MCT) McClatchy-Tribune News Service News Budget for Thursday, April 24, 2014 ^

  • Russia launches military drills along Ukraine border

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    MOSCOW — Russian armed forces began drills along the border with Ukraine Thursday in response to a crackdown by the government in Kiev on pro-Russian separatists in the east that killed at least five people. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said ground and air force units were taking part in the exercises. “The go-ahead has been given to the use of force against (Ukraine’s) own civilian population. We have to react to such a development,” Shoigu told senior Defesce Ministry officials, according to Russian news agencies. Russia has massed tens of thousands of troops along the border since the situation in Ukraine escalated after the ouster of pro-Moscow president Viktor Yanukovych in February.

  • Hannemann runs for Hawaii governor as independent

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    HONOLULU (AP) — Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann has announced he will run for governor as an independent, saying he is more likely to win if candidates from major parties split the vote. Hannemann told the Honolulu Star Advertiser (http://is.gd/zOrsL0 ) he has done well in general elections where he can appeal to voters across the political spectrum. "I think clearly people are not happy with the way both major parties sometimes push folks to accept party platforms — or the rigidity of party platforms — either having to appeal to the far left or the far right," Hannemann said. "I've always been a moderate. I've always been a centrist. I've always been independent.

  • BC-NC--North Carolina News Digest, NC

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    The Carolinas News Editor is Tim Rogers. The breaking news supervisor is Skip Foreman. For technical support, please call the AP's Services and Technology Department in Raleigh at 919-881-9974. XGR-COMMON CORE RALEIGH — Republican lawmakers sound ready to separate North Carolina from the nationally-developed K-12 academic standards after complaints from parents, think tanks and other groups that Common Core requirements are controlling curriculum and classrooms. A General Assembly study committee Thursday recommended colleagues pass a law directing the State Board of Education to replace the Common Core standards for math and language arts with something else, with input from a proposed standards commission. The alterations

  • BC-JAILERS-HNS

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    (For use by New York Times News Service Clients) The convicted heroin dealer wanted some cigarettes, Cool Ranch Doritos, Jolly Ranchers, meals from McDonald's, deodorant, a toothbrush - and a cellphone to call his girlfriend. A civilian jailer at the Harris County jail filled the order and later collected a $25 fee from the inmate's girlfriend. Jailer Branden C. Paez allegedly had a similar deal with two other inmates that included bringing in home-cooked meals. On Wednesday, Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia announced charges against Paez, 20, of Spring, the fifth civilian jailer charged in recent months with bringing a variety of contraband into the Harris County jail system.

  • BC-AP News Digest 6 pm

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    The world at 6 p.m. Times are EDT. At the Nerve Center, Mike Stewart and Stephanie Siek can be reached at 800-845-8450 (ext. 1600). For photos, Swayne Hall (ext. 1900). For graphics and interactives, (ext. 7636). Expanded AP content can be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. For access to AP Exchange and other technical issues, contact apcustomersupport@ap.org or call 877-836-9477. NEW AND DEVELOPING — OBAMA — President arrives in Seoul about 11:30 p.m. — ARGENTINA-POPE-DIVORCE — Vatican says Pope isn't hinting at new divorce policy by encouraging Argentine woman's communion. SENT: 600 words, photo. — GAS-DRILLING-FRACK-CHEMICALS — Major oil & gas supplier to disclose all drilling chemicals

  • After court drama, Oklahoma to have 2 executions

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma plans to hold its first double execution in nearly 80 years, Gov. Mary Fallin said Thursday. The move comes a day after the state Supreme Court removed one of the final obstacles, ruling late Wednesday that Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner are not entitled to know the source of the drugs that will be used to kill them. The inmates had sought that information through a civil lawsuit. "The defendants had their day in court. The court has made a decision," Gov. Mary Fallin said in a statement. "Two men that do not contest their guilt in heinous murders will now face justice, and the families and friends of their victims will now have closure.

  • Bill would allow sale of raw milk in Louisiana

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Arguments of choice versus public safety are heated in a fight about whether to let Louisiana farmers sell raw milk to the public. The full state House will consider a bill that would allow sales of unpasteurized milk, after it was advanced in a 9-6 vote Thursday by the House Agriculture Committee. Approval came despite opposition from Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain, who said farmers couldn't guarantee that unpasteurized milk would be safe because it doesn't go through the heating process designed to kill harmful bacteria. Louisiana's state health officer, Jimmy Guidry, told lawmakers he wouldn't allow his family to drink raw milk. Supporters of raw milk say pasteurization takes away some

  • AP News in Brief at 5:58 p.m. EDT

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    Afghan government guard opens fire at Kabul hospital, kills 3 American doctors, wounds nurse KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An Afghan government security guard opened fire Thursday on a group of foreign doctors at a Kabul hospital, killing three American physicians and wounding a U.S. nurse, officials said. The shooting at Cure International Hospital in western Kabul was the latest in a string of deadly attacks on foreign civilians in the Afghan capital. Two of the dead Americans were a father and son, Health Minister Soraya Dalil said, adding that the third American was a Cure International doctor who had worked in Kabul for seven years. Dalil said an American nurse was also wounded in the attack.

  • AP top news in Iowa at 3:58 p.m. CDT

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A jury has found a Des Moines teenager guilty of two counts of first-degree robbery in connection to a brutal attack last year. The jury in Polk County District Court deliberated about an hour before reaching a verdict Thursday in the case of 17-year-old Terrance Cheeks, who was tried as an adult. He is scheduled to be sentenced on June 13. Cheeks and two other teenagers are accused of accosting several drivers in Des Moines in an attempt to steal a car in February 2013. The last victim suffered permanent brain damage. Cheeks' defense attorney argued that his client only played a minor role in the carjacking. Assistant Polk County Attorney Frank Severino said Cheeks was just as complicit in the

  • ABI reviewing law enforcement-involved shooting

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    TALLASSEE, Ala. (AP) — The Alabama Bureau of Investigation is reviewing the shooting death of a man in Tallassee. District Attorney Randall Houston tells the Montgomery Advertiser that no officers fired during the encounter on Wednesday afternoon. Tallassee Police Chief Jimmy Rodgers identified the man as 38-year-old Bobby Jay Coates IV of the Eclectic/Tallassee area. Rodgers says officers were attempting to serve a warrant to Coates when he shot himself in his vehicle. Houston says the investigation is standard procedure for any shooting involving an officer (http://on.mgmadv.com/1rqurvS). A spokesman for the Alabama Beverage Control Board says an officer with the agency requested the bureau's involvement. The

  • BC-KS--Kansas News Digest, KS

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    Kansas at 5 p.m. Dana Fields is on the desk and can be reached at 800-852-4844 or 816-421-4844. For access to AP Exchange and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477. NEW AND UPDATED: — VOTER ID-LAWSUIT. New. — SEVERE WEATHER. New. — UNIVERSITY-MAJOR GIFT. — SCHOOL-LIGHTNING DAMAGE. APNewsNow. — AUTO PARTS SUPPLIER. APNewsNow. TOP STORY: MICHELLE OBAMA-TOPEKA VISIT TOKYO — Michelle Obama is rearranging plans for a speech before graduating high school seniors in Topeka, Kan., in the face of protests that her appearance at a combined graduation ceremony for five schools would limit seating for families and friends