• Ohio funeral home owner pleads not guilty to corpse abuse

    Updated: 51 min ago

    TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — The owner of an Ohio funeral home where several bodies intended for cremation were found in a state of decay has pleaded not guilty to corpse abuse charges. Robert Tate Jr. of Tate Funeral Services in Toledo was arraigned Tuesday on two felony counts in Lucas County court. A trial is scheduled for Sept. 8. A message seeking comment was left for Tate's attorney, Derek Farmer. The funeral home has maintained it provided embalming in accordance with state law. In late May, authorities removed 11 bodies intended for cremation, including some that were stored in a damp garage. Tate's license was later suspended by a state board that oversees funeral homes. He also was sued by the family of a man w

  • Judge nixes suit by Zimmerman parents against Roseanne Barr

    Updated: 52 min ago

    SANFORD, Fla. (AP) — A judge has thrown out a lawsuit filed by George Zimmerman's parents against Roseanne Barr after the comedian and actress put their address on her Twitter feed. Circuit Judge Melanie Chase on Tuesday granted a summary judgment in favor of Barr. Her attorney argued that Barr was exercising her First Amendment rights and that the address was already public information. David Heil, the lawyer for Robert and Gladys Zimmerman, contended they did not feel safe in their home after Barr tweeted their address three years ago. The Orlando Sentinel reports (http://bit.

  • Some victims identified in 1 of 2 Midwest plane crashes

    Updated: 54 min ago

    Authorities have identified some of the seven people killed when two small planes crashed separately within hours of one another in western Wisconsin and southwestern Minnesota. Sheriff's officials say two passengers killed when a fixed-wing plane crashed in southwestern Minnesota were teenagers from Mexico. The Pipestone County Sheriff's Department says the plane was piloted by 59-year-old Steven Christensen of rural Pipestone, who was also killed when the plane went down in a cornfield near his hometown about 8 p.m. Eighteen-year-old Marcos Favela, of Torreon, Mexico, and a 13-year-old unidentified girl from Guadalajara, Mexico, were passengers who died in the crash.

  • Wisconsin Assembly approves Milwaukee Bucks arena deal

    Updated: 55 min ago

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin state Assembly has passed a bill to have taxpayers pay $250 million to help pay for a new Milwaukee Bucks arena. The bill passed on a bipartisan 52-34 vote Tuesday. The measure now goes to Gov. Scott Walker who has been working with lawmakers to reach a deal. Under the agreement, current and former Bucks owners will pay $250 million toward the cost of the arena. The taxpayer portion will eventually grow to about $400 million over 20 years. Supporters say the new arena will bring jobs to Milwaukee and help improve the economy of the state. They say a new arena will help the city and state continue to move forward. Bucks coach Jason Kidd watched the debate from the Assembly galle

  • Interstate gas pipeline re-routed to avoid fragile NY forest

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A section of the 124-mile route of the planned Constitution Pipeline has been redrawn to avoid a 1,000-acre private forest with fragile wetlands. Christopher Stockton, spokesman for the pipeline that will bring natural gas from Pennsylvania to New York City and New England, confirmed the route change Tuesday. Stockton says the change adds almost three miles to the route and affects 11 landowners who have signed right-of-way agreements. The new route avoids the private Charlotte Forest in Harpersfield, about 50 miles southwest of Albany. The property is owned by the heirs of forester Henry Kernan. Family members were among pipeline opponents who said the project was environmentally damaging.

  • Drugmaker Pfizer tops Street 2Q forecasts, raises forecast

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    Pfizer Inc. beat Wall Street's second-quarter expectations and raised its 2015 forecast, as soaring sales for a few key products helped inoculate the world's second-largest drugmaker against a $1 billion revenue hit from foreign exchange rates and its last wave of cheap generic competition hurting former big sellers. Though net income dropped 10 percent, shares of the New York-based maker of Viagra started climbed Tuesday. The drugmaker, which has struggled in recent years, touted its third straight quarter with operational growth and prospects to have 10 drugs in testing by next year in the hot field of immune-oncology — medicines that boost the immune system to better fight cancer. Rivals Merck & Co. and Bristol-Mye

  • Northern California wildfires rage on as temperatures rise

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — High temperatures are expected Tuesday as crews struggle to make headway against a wildfire threatening about 450 homes and other buildings in the rugged foothills of Central California, fire officials said. The fire burning near the tiny wooded communities of Bass Lake and Cascadel Woods north of Fresno, California, is just 5 percent contained as crews work in steep terrain on the ground and helicopters and air tankers help from above. Residents remain under orders to be prepared to evacuate because of the fire, which has charred nearly 3 square miles. Firefighters will closely watch the rising temperatures and adjust their tactics accordingly, said Cody Norris, a spokesman for the U.S. Forest S

  • Cops: Man stabs neighbor after asking him to lower TV volume

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    EAST GREENWICH, R.I. (AP) — Police say a Rhode Island man stabbed a neighbor after asking him to turn down the volume on his TV. Sixty-year-old David Sisti was arraigned Tuesday in Kent County District Court on charges of felony assault and assault with a deadly weapon. He was ordered held on $20,000 bail and is due back in court Aug. 24. Police tell WPRI-TV (http://bit.ly/1GYVljF ) that Sisti went to the East Greenwich home of 54-year-old Gary Raymond early Tuesday and asked him to turn down his television. Police say a short time later, Sisti returned to Raymond's house and stabbed him in the chest and abdomen with a kitchen knife when he answered the door. Police say Raymond is undergoing surgery at a hospita

  • City not releasing 911 call in attack on Oklahoma family

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    TULSA, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma city is not releasing a recording of the 911 call made from a Broken Arrow home where a couple and three of their children were stabbed to death. Authorities initially said the call, described by Broken Arrow Police Sgt. Thomas Cooper as "gruesome," would be released Monday. An assistant to the city attorney indicated Tuesday that it wouldn't be released because it's part of the investigation into the deaths of the five members of the Bever family. Robert Bever, 18, is accused in a booking document of five counts of first-degree murder and a count of aggravated assault in the attack Wednesday. Prosecutors say they also plan to charge Bever's 16-year-old brother as an adult.

  • US military chief: World risks becoming immune to crises

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — The top U.S. military official is warning that the world risks becoming immune to the escalating global security threats and doing nothing. Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said it would be "a shame" if the world doesn't realize it is reaching a point where it becomes immune or insensitive and shake itself "back into the reality that we can do something about it." Dempsey said over his 41-year military career he's "never witnessed such significant shifts in the international security environment as we are seeing all around us today." He told several dozen U.N. ambassadors and military attaches Tuesday that the U.N.

  • JetBlue avoids some industry bumps in 2Q

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — JetBlue flew a little higher than many of its competitors during the second quarter, booking solid revenue numbers for each mile flown. That key industry figure has been under pressure for other carriers as they seek to satisfy demand by putting more planes in the air, which can leave more seats empty on flights. JetBlue said Tuesday that it filled more seats and was able to charge more for those tickets. The average flight was 85.6 percent full in the second quarter, up from 84.6 percent in the same period a year ago. The average fare rose 0.6 percent to $168.85. Revenue from each seat flown one mile rose 1.4 percent. Other carriers have put of some soft numbers and see that trend continuing, at least

  • US consumer confidence falls to lowest level since September

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence fell this month to the lowest level since September. Consumers are worried about the job market and rattled by events in Greece and China. The Conference Board said Tuesday that its index of consumer confidence fell to 90.9 in July from a revised 99.8 in June. That's the lowest since September's reading of 89. Consumers' assessment of current conditions fell slightly to a still-healthy 107.4 from 110.3 in June; but their outlook for the next six months dropped sharply to 79.9 this month, the lowest since February 2014 and down from 92.8 in June. Lynn Franco, a Conference Board economist, says consumers may have been concerned about the debt standoff in Greece and a stock mark

  • 1 count thrown out, 2 upheld in Katrina burned body case

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A federal appeals court has refused to grant a new trial to a former New Orleans police officer convicted for burning the body of a man shot to death by another officer after Hurricane Katrina. But the officer, Gregory McRae, might get a reduced prison sentence: The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said a recent Supreme Court ruling in another case involving destruction of records requires that one obstruction charge against McRae be thrown out. McRae remains convicted on two other charges in the burning of Henry Glover's body and car. He's serving a 17-year sentence. That sentence must be recalculated under Tuesday's ruling. Former officer David Warren shot Glover while guarding a strip mall four

  • 'I am an American' says man who tried to join Islamic State

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — A Georgia man who wrote he was "ready for jihad" before buying a one-way ticket overseas to try joining the Islamic State group was sentenced to federal prison Tuesday after he sobbed to the judge, "I am an American." Leon Nathan Davis III of Augusta was sentenced to 15 years, the maximum punishment allowed. A pale, bearded man with a Southern accent, the 38-year-old Davis pleaded guilty in May to seeking to help a known terrorist organization. He was arrested at the Atlanta airport last October trying to board a flight to Turkey. Davis later said his plan was to be smuggled into Syria so he could join the Islamic State group as a recruiter and an English teacher.

  • Freeport-McCoRan launches business review to cut costs

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    Shares of Freeport-McMoRan jumped Tuesday after the company said it has started reviewing its mining and oil and gas businesses to look for cost-cutting opportunities in the face of weak markets for its products. The Phoenix company plans to complete the review and report on revised plans during the third quarter. It will look for ways to cut capital spending and operating and administrative costs. The company said this could include adjustments to mine plans and future copper and molybdenum production volumes to cut costs. Freeport-McMoRan Inc.'s assets include mining operations in North and South America, oil and gas assets in the United States and a minerals deposit in Indonesia. Its shares rose were up 8.1 percent,

  • Haslam launching 15-stop tour of Tenn. on road funding needs

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Haslam is launching a 15-stop tour of Tennessee to discuss the transportation funding challenges as he considers a proposal to increase the state's gas tax for the first time in 25 years. Haslam in a release Tuesday cited a "multi-billion dollar backlog" of highway projects across the state. He said the state can no longer depend on federal funding. He also said maintenance becomes more expensive as infrastructure ages and new projects are needed to improve safety, access and economic development. Haslam will be joined by Transportation Commissioner John Schroer on the six-week tour beginning Aug. 5 in Memphis.

  • The Latest: Kerry's nuke deal testimony translated in Iran

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The latest developments on Obama administration officials' testimony Tuesday before Congress on the Iran nuclear deal (all times local EDT): 12:53 p.m. Iran's state TV's broadcast of Secretary of State John Kerry's testimony before Congress on a landmark nuclear agreement was simultaneously translated into Farsi and a news bar highlighting specific remarks. It's the second time state TV has broadcast Kerry's testimony this week, marking a further departure from Iran's longtime policy of not broadcasting remarks by U.S. officials. State TV has carried two speeches by President Barack Obama on the nuclear deal.

  • From rents to haircuts, Americans start to feel price hikes

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Apartment rents are up. So are prices for restaurant meals, haircuts, gym memberships and a cup of coffee. For American consumers who have become used to flat or even falling prices for several years, an unfamiliar sight has emerged in many corners of the economy: Inflation is ticking up. The price increases remain modest. And in many cases, they're canceled out by price declines for other items that are keeping overall inflation historically low. Yet the stepped-up price tags for a range of consumer items are the largest since the Great Recession ended six years ago. They actually reflect a healthier economy: Many businesses have finally grown confident enough to pass their own higher costs on to co

  • 5 things to know about the fight over the Export-Import Bank

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal Export-Import Bank expired June 30 when Congress failed to renew its charter. The bank is a small federal agency that helps U.S. companies sell their products overseas, by underwriting loans to foreign customers. Conservatives oppose it as corporate welfare and are pushing to keep it dead. But late Monday the Senate voted 64-29 to add legislation reviving the bank to a sweeping highway bill being considered on the floor. Five things to know about the Export-Import Bank and its future: ___ PATH AHEAD Despite the Senate's action on a measure to revive the bank and extend it through 2019, its future is far from assured.

  • NY prison worker pleads guilty in escape of 2 killers

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (AP) — A prison worker admitted Tuesday to smuggling hacksaw blades in frozen hamburger meat to two killers who later broke out and spent more than two weeks on the run, and prosecutors said they believed no one else knowingly aided in the elaborate escape. Joyce Mitchell, a tailor shop instructor at Clinton Correctional Facility, wept as she pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree promoting prison contraband, a felony, and misdemeanor fourth-degree criminal facilitation. Mitchell, 51, faces a sentence of 2 1/3 years to 7 years in prison under terms of a plea deal with prosecutors. Sentencing is set for Sept. 28. Her lawyer said his client won't be able to post the bail set by the judge at $100,000 cash