• Three die after separate wrecks in Oklahoma

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: 52 min ago

    Vickie Blevins, 61, of Healdton, Jeanne Ellis, 67, of Chickasha, and James Wagner, 55, of Collinsville, died after separate wrecks on Oklahoma roads, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported.

  • Protester in St. Louis area charged with arson

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BERKELEY, Mo. (AP) — A protester who advocated for peaceful demonstrations in Ferguson was charged Saturday with setting fire to a convenience store in a neighboring suburb. A St. Louis County jail official said Joshua Williams, 19, of St. Louis, was being held on $30,000 bond. He is charged with arson, second-degree burglary and stealing less than $500. Williams, who was frequently quoted and photographed protesting Michael Brown's death, is accused of using lighter fluid to set multiple fires inside and outside a QuikTrip in Berkeley. Court records said Williams confessed in a videotaped interview, and that his actions were captured by surveillance video and by news media.

  • Key developments in police-communities tension

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    The killings of two unarmed blacks by white police officers in Missouri and New York this summer touched off protests and a national debate over police conduct that intensified after grand juries refused to indict the officers. Tensions escalated further after two New York City police officers were killed a week ago by a man who suggested in online posts that their deaths were in retaliation for the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in New York City. The gunman committed suicide.

  • NYC officer mourned at funeral as tensions linger

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Thousands of police officers from across the nation packed a church and spilled onto streets Saturday to honor Officer Rafael Ramos as a devoted family man, aspiring chaplain and hero, though an air of unrest surrounding his ambush shooting was not completely pushed aside. While mourners inside the church applauded politely as Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke, hundreds of officers outside turned their backs on him in a show of disrespect for what they see as his support for anti-police protesters. The rush of officers far and wide to New York for Ramos' funeral reminded some of the bond after the Sept. 11 attacks and Superstorm Sandy. Vice President Joe Biden promised that the "incredibly diverse city can and will

  • Jefferson leads No. 2 UConn women over SMU 96-45

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — UConn's Geno Auriemma moved to the top of another list on Saturday. The Huskies 96-45 win over SMU gave the Hall of Fame coach a career record of 888-134, and a winning percentage of 86.888. That's the best in women's college basketball history, surpassing former Louisiana Tech Coach Leon Barmore, who finished his career his career with a winning percentage of 86.878 and a record of 576-87. "But if we lose Monday night, then I'm back to No. 2, and I'm king for a day," Auriemma joked. UConn point guard Moriah Jefferson broke out of a three-game slump with a career-high 24 points to lead the Huskies (9-1) in the teams' American Athletic Conference opener.

  • John Paul II gunman lays flowers at Vatican tomb

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Turkish gunman who shot and wounded John Paul II in 1981 laid white flowers Saturday on the saint's tomb in St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican officials said. The surprise visit by Mehmet Ali Agca, believed to be his first time in the Vatican since the assassination attempt, lasted a few minutes, a Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, said. As with other flowers left by visitors to the tomb, the blossoms were later removed by basilica workers. Benedettini said there are no legal matters pending against Agca in the Vatican and he was free to visit. Agca's trip came on the 31st anniversary of his meeting with the pope. John Paul, who forgave his attacker, visited Agca in a Rome prison on Dec.

  • US mission in Havana to become embassy amid thaw

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    HAVANA (AP) — A half-century after Washington severed relations with Cuba, the United States' seven-story mission looms over Havana's seaside Malecon boulevard as the largest diplomatic outpost in the country. Cuban guards stand at close intervals on the street outside, and islanders line up by the thousands each year for a shot at a coveted visa. The gleaming U.S. Interests Section suddenly is poised to become an even more important presence in Cuba as the two countries negotiate the first phase of their historic detente — transforming the complex into a full embassy that would reflect the Obama administration's hopes of new influence on the communist island. Roberta Jacobson, assistant U.S.

  • Final goodbye: Roll call of some who died in 2014

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    They each turned a moment of violence into a call to action. For James Brady, that moment came when he was shot and wounded by a would-be presidential assassin. For Chung Eun-yong, it was the killings of his two children during the Korean War. Brady took up a personal campaign for increased gun control after surviving a head wound when a man tried unsuccessfully to kill President Ronald Reagan, for whom Brady was press secretary. Chung began a years-long quest for justice, which eventually prompted the U.S. Army to acknowledge having killed civilian refugees at No Gun Ri. Brady and Chung, who died within days of each other in August, are among the notables who left the world in 2014.

  • Devils replace DeBoer with 3-headed coaching staff

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — The New Jersey Devils are replacing the fired Pete DeBoer with a three-headed coaching staff. Former Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates, ex-Devils assistant and star defenseman Scott Stevens and general manager Lou Lamoriello will split duties on the bench. Oates will handle the forwards and Stevens will oversee the defense, Lamoriello said at a news conference before Saturday's morning skate. "I'll go on the bench to make sure it works for now," Lamoriello said. "It's a unique way of approaching things." There will be no official head coach for the rest of the season. Lamoriello plans to remain on the bench "until I feel comfortable with the situation.

  • Outgoing Oklahoma state schools Superintendent Janet Barresi reflects on challenges of leading Education Department

    By Tim Willert, Staff Writer | Updated: 7 hr ago

    Oklahoma’s outgoing state schools Superintendent Janet Barresi said her reforms will continue to strengthen public education in the state.

  • Oklahoma City company withdraws application to drill for oil near Lake Hefner

    By Jay F. Marks, Business Writer | Updated: 7 hr ago

    Pedestal Oil Co. Inc., an Oklahoma City oil company, has withdrawn its application to drill on the south side of Lake Hefner, Oklahoma City officials said Friday.

  • Wanted extremist leader surrenders in Somalia

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A leader with the Islamic extremist group al-Shabab, who had a $3 million bounty on his head, surrendered in Somalia, a Somali intelligence official said Saturday. Zakariya Ismail Ahmed Hersi surrendered to Somali police in the Gedo region, said the intelligence officer, who insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the press. Hersi may have surrendered because he fell out with those loyal to Ahmed Abdi Godane, al-Shabab's top leader who was killed in a U.S. airstrike earlier this year, the officer said. Hersi was one of seven top al-Shabab officials whom the Obama administration offered a total $33 million in rewards for information leading to their capture in 2012.

  • Sen. Tom Coburn talks liberty, spying, torture, the media and Elizabeth Warren

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Updated: 7 hr ago

    In a final interview with The Oklahoman’s Washington bureau before resigning from the Senate, the Muskogee Republican talks about the Founding Fathers and what they meant.

  • Cold front brings wintry weather to Oklahoma, Arkansas

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A cold front has brought freezing temperatures, sleet and snow to parts of Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas. The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory Saturday for portions of central and southern Oklahoma, where snow accumulations of up to three inches was possible. Forecasters say areas of light snow will continue over much of northeast Oklahoma and far northwest Arkansas. Temperatures northwest of the Tulsa area have fallen below freezing, while elsewhere they should remain a little above. Areas northwest of Tulsa could see around an inch of snow, with lesser amounts elsewhere. Most of the accumulation will occur on grassy and elevated surfaces.

  • Oklahoma inmate's propensity for pleadings clogs up courts, judge says

    By Jennifer Palmer, Staff Writer | Updated: 9 hr ago

    For years, judges have been telling Alvin Parker, 56, that he’s run out of chances. But the convict hasn’t given up.

  • Death penalty states unmoved by botched execution

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    McALESTER, Okla. (AP) — Oklahoma's last execution went so badly that the state tried to cancel it before it was over. With the inmate writhing while the lethal drugs seeped into his body, his executioners drew the viewing gallery curtains, concealing what the warden later described as "a bloody mess." The botched execution of Clayton Lockett in April and other troubling ones this year in Ohio and Arizona gave capital punishment opponents a flicker of hope that areas of the country that most enthusiastically support the death penalty might have a change of heart. They didn't. Although Gov.

  • Official: Islamic extremist leader with $3 million bounty on his head surrenders in Somalia

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Official: Islamic extremist leader with $3 million bounty on his head surrenders in Somalia.

  • School error takes money from staff bank accounts

    Updated: 12 hr ago

    PLYMOUTH, Mass. (AP) — Some employees in a Massachusetts school district feel like they got a visit from the Grinch. Instead of receiving their paychecks via direct deposit on the day after Christmas, Plymouth Public Schools workers awoke Friday to find that the amount they were to be paid had instead been withdrawn from their bank accounts. About 1,300 workers were affected. Boston.com reports (http://bit.ly/1wsUBhe ) Superintendent Dr. Gary E. Maestas sent an email to employees saying the issue was caused by human error. The school department is working with the town and banks to fix the problem, hopefully by Saturday. But Maestas says some banks, including Bank of America, Citizens Bank and Santander, won't make co

  • Crystal Palace fires manager Neil Warnock

    Updated: 12 hr ago

    LONDON (AP) — Crystal Palace fired Neil Warnock after only four months in charge on Saturday, becoming the first English Premier League manager to lose his job this season. The 66-year-old Warnock's second spell in charge of Palace ended with the London club in the relegation zone after just one win in 12 Premier League matches. Palace said that Warnock's assistant, Keith Millen, will be in charge for Sunday's game against Queens Park Rangers as caretaker manager. One of the most outspoken, colorful characters in English football, Warnock was hired on a two-year deal in August after Tony Pulis quit Palace just two days before the opening match.

  • Oklahoma news briefs, Dec. 27

    Published: Sat, Dec 27, 2014

    Oklahoma news briefs, Dec. 27, 2014