• Miss America Organization gave $6M in cash, tuition in 2014

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — The Miss America Organization says it handed out nearly $6 million in cash or free tuition to contestants last year in its scholarship awards program. Figures released Friday represent a change in the way the pageant describes its scholarships. In the past, the group said it made up to $45 million available in annual scholarships. But that figure didn't represent money actually paid out or used by contestants. Miss America and its state organizations gave more than $5.9 million in cash awards or tuition waivers to contestants across the country last year. In 2014, more than 350 colleges and universities across the country awarded in-kind tuition waivers to Miss America contestants.

  • AP PHOTOS: Haunting images of people fleeing their homelands

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    Wrenching images of a drowned Syrian boy focused the world's attention this week on the plight of people fleeing their homelands. But the crisis has been developing for years. Here are other indelible images taken by Associated Press photographers that you may have missed.

  • Carter Lay, grandson of potato chip maker, dies at 44

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Carter Lay, a philanthropist who supported music education and was a grandson of the famed potato chip maker, has died. Lt. David Smith, a supervising coroner investigator at the Los Angeles County coroner's office, says the 44-year-old, whose full name was Jesse Chapman Carter Lay, died a natural death and was found at his house in Venice on Thursday afternoon. Aunt Susan Lay Atwell says Lay's grandfather started Lay's potato chips. Today, the Frito-Lay foods business is owned by Purchase, New York-based PepsiCo. Carter Lay was a cancer survivor and philanthropist who helped build schools and supported music education.

  • Convicted ex-Ravens cheerleader won't be charged in Maryland

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    TOWSON, Md. (AP) — A former Baltimore Ravens cheerleader who was convicted of raping a 15-year-old boy in Delaware won't face similar charges in Maryland. Baltimore County prosecutors announced Friday that they won't pursue charges against Molly Shattuck. The 48-year-old Shattuck pleaded guilty in June to one count of fourth-degree rape. She was sentenced last month to two years of probation and ordered to spend every other weekend in custody for two years. The teenager told police that Shattuck began an inappropriate relationship with him in the Baltimore area and that it culminated with sexual activity at a vacation rental home in Delaware. Shattuck is the former wife of Mayo Shattuck, the chairman of Chicago-

  • Federal judge in North Dakota says injunction against Obama water rule limited to 13 states

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Federal judge in North Dakota says injunction against Obama water rule limited to 13 states.

  • Cop accused of lying about shooting on cruiser faces charges

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    MILLIS, Mass. (AP) — A part-time police officer accused of concocting a story about a shootout with a gunman before his cruiser crashed into a tree and caught on fire will face charges, authorities confirmed Friday. Bryan Johnson will be charged with misleading a criminal investigation, communicating false information to emergency services, malicious destruction of property and unlawful discharge of a firearm, Millis police Sgt. William Dwyer said. Johnson, 24, had said a man in a pickup truck fired at his cruiser Wednesday afternoon, forcing him to crash into a tree. Johnson said his SUV caught on fire, and he climbed out of the vehicle and shot back at the gunman.

  • Workers accused of day care 'Fight Club' plead not guilty

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    ELIZABETH, N.J. (AP) — Two day care workers accused of instigating scuffles among young children as part of what one compared to the movie "Fight Club" pleaded not guilty Friday to child abuse charges. Erica Kenny, 22, of Cranford, and Chanese White, 28, of Roselle, entered their pleas on fourth-degree child abuse charges at a hearing. Kenny also faces a charge of third-degree endangering the welfare of a child after prosecutors say she recorded video of the Aug. 13 fights and shared them with friends through Snapchat. In the video, she compares the fights to the 1999 movie starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton, authorities said.

  • Near LA's Koreatown, pastor tries to lift veil on drug abuse

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — In a blue-and-white church on the outskirts of Los Angeles' Koreatown, pastor Young Ho Han is trying to lift the veil on a problem silently afflicting his community: drug abuse among young Korean-Americans. It's an issue Han knows well, starting with his own addiction to cocaine after immigrating to Los Angeles in the 1970s to the increasingly young U.S.-born Koreans whose parents discreetly approach him today. There is the girl whose friends abandoned her in a trash bin after one ruinous binge. The high school debate champion who got addicted to meth within a month of trying pot. The college graduate whose boyfriend persuaded her to try heroin. Some parents are so fearful their family's secret will

  • Home decorating retailer At Home files for IPO

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — At Home Group, a chain of stores that sells furniture, rugs and other home goods, said Friday that it plans to become a publicly-traded company. The company, founded in 1979, was formerly called Garden Ridge until it changed its name last year. At Home has 94 stores around the country. Stores opened at least a year averaged more than $6 million in sales annually, the company said. Its average store is 120,000 square feet. The retailer did not say how many shares it expects to sell in an initial public offering, or how much they will cost, or when it will happen. It said it expects to raise as much as $100 million, but that number will likely change. It plans to use the money raised to pay off debt.

  • New Hampshire town celebrates notable '65 UFO sighting

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    EXETER, N.H. (AP) — They say a lightning strike started a fire in the Exeter, New Hampshire, town hall that caused the cancellation of a UFO festival the first year it was hosted by the local Kiwanis Club. That's what they say anyway. (Cue the eerie music and get Steven Spielberg on the line right away.) Fifty years ago, a frightened 18-year-old high school graduate and future Navy seaman named Norman Muscarello told police he had seen an unidentified flying object. The event that became known as "The Incident at Exeter" sparked an Air Force investigation and became one of the nation's most celebrated and scrutinized sightings.

  • Murder conviction tossed, man freed after 9 years in prison

    Updated: 10 hr ago

    NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A man who spent nine years in prison for a 2006 killing that his supporters say he was coerced into confessing to as a teenager with a low IQ was set free Friday after a judge vacated his murder conviction at the request of prosecutors. Bobby Johnson, 25, was greeted with cheers and applause and was hugged by family and friends as he walked out of New Haven Superior Court. "I'm still trying to grasp everything now," Johnson said. "It's beautiful. It's beautiful." His release culminated years of efforts to win his freedom by his lawyer, Kenneth Rosenthal, and the Connecticut Innocence Project, which has won several exonerations of wrongly convicted people over the past decade.

  • Arby's workers disciplined after refusing to serve officer

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. (AP) — A manager has been fired and a drive-thru worker has been put on paid leave at a South Florida Arby's restaurant accused of refusing to serve a police officer. The Atlanta-based company confirmed the disciplinary actions Friday. Pembroke Pines police say a sergeant attempted to order at the Arby's drive-thru Tuesday evening, but a manager told her a drive-thru worker didn't want to serve her because she was a police officer. Arby's CEO Paul Brown previously apologized to Police Chief Dan Giustino and released a statement Friday explaining that the incident seems to have resulted from a bad joke. According to the statement, the crew member had gotten busy and asked the manager for help

  • Ex-son-in-law of John Gotti pleads not guilty to conspiracy

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    CLEVELAND (AP) — A reputed member of New York's Gambino crime family and former son-in-law of John Gotti pleaded not guilty Friday in what authorities say is a multimillion- dollar scam involving scrap metal and stolen cars. Carmine "The Bull" Agnello, of Bentleyville, entered the pleas in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court to charges including conspiracy, theft and money laundering. Authorities said an 18-month investigation uncovered how Agnello put sand into cars, many of them stolen, to add weight and to increase their scrap value before crushing the vehicles and selling them to a metals processing company. A deputy Cleveland police chief said Agnello would pay people small amounts, usually less than $50, to bring

  • The Latest: Trial of Alabama police officer resumes Tuesday

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (AP) — The latest in the trial of an Alabama police officer accused of slamming an Indian man to the ground (all times local): 1:30 p.m. The federal trial of an Alabama police officer recorded slamming an Indian grandfather to the ground is set to resume Tuesday morning. U.S. District Judge Madeline Hughes Haikala dismissed jurors hearing the case of Madison police officer Eric Parker for the day Friday afternoon after defense attorney Robert Tuten said he finished calling witnesses for the day. Parker slammed 58-year-old Sureshbhai Patel (suh-REHSH'-by pah-TEL') to the ground in February, saying he defied orders and reached for his pockets while he responded to a call of a suspicious person. Pa

  • Ex-son-in-law of John Gotti pleads not guilty to conspiracy

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    CLEVELAND (AP) — A reputed member of New York's Gambino crime family and former son-in-law of John Gotti pleaded not guilty Friday in what authorities say is a multimillion- dollar scam involving scrap metal and stolen cars. Carmine "The Bull" Agnello, of Bentleyville, entered the pleas in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court to charges including conspiracy, theft and money laundering. Authorities said an 18-month investigation uncovered how Agnello put sand into cars, many of them stolen, to add weight and to increase their scrap value before crushing the vehicles and selling them to a metals processing company. A deputy Cleveland police chief said Agnello would pay people small amounts, usually less than $50, to bring

  • Toyota to invest $50M in car-tech research at Stanford, MIT

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    EAST PALO ALTO, Calif. (AP) — Toyota is investing $50 million with Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in hopes of gaining an edge in an accelerating race to phase out human drivers. The financial commitment announced Friday by the Japanese automaker will be made over the next five years at joint research centers located in Silicon Valley and another technology hub in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Toyota has hired robotics expert Gill Pratt to oversee research aimed at developing artificial intelligence and other innovations that will enable future car models to navigate the roads without people doing all the steering and stopping.

  • Fired regulator: Governor pushed to waive oil safeguards.

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — California's top oil and gas regulators repeatedly warned Gov. Jerry Brown's senior aides in 2011 that the governor's orders to override key environmental safeguards in granting oil industry permits would violate state and federal laws protecting groundwater from contamination, one of the former officials has testified. Brown fired the regulators on Nov. 3, 2011, one day after what the official says was a final order from the governor to bypass provisions of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act and grant permits for oilfield injection wells. Brown later boasted publicly that the dismissals led to a speed up of oilfield permitting.

  • Large California fire expected to rage into holiday weekend

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — California's largest wildfire so far this year was expected to rage through the Labor Day weekend in the Sierra Nevada, spewing smoke that has forced campgrounds near a popular lake to close and prompted health warnings, officials said Friday. The fire that has burned 130 square miles east of Fresno is just one factor that has challenged people planning outdoor activities in recent weeks. An infestation of bugs swarmed high-desert communities on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada. In addition, an 18-day manhunt along the famed Pacific Crest Trail ended with the suspect's death.

  • Man found guilty of kidnapping girl from LA home, raping her

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — A California man was found guilty Friday of kidnapping a 10-year-old girl from her Los Angeles bedroom at knifepoint and repeatedly raping her before letting her go and fleeing to Mexico. A jury found Tobias Summers, 34, guilty of all 32 charges against him, including sexual assault, kidnapping and burglary. He will face up to life in prison at his sentencing Oct. 22. As a court clerk read the first guilty verdict, the girl's family breathed a heavy sigh, wiped away tears and consoled her. As the rest of the verdicts were read over the course of about an hour, Summers would shake his head, lay it down on the table in front of him and close his eyes, or even smirk.

  • No-contact order between O'Donnell's daughter and man lifted

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A request from Rosie O'Donnell's teenage daughter to lift a no-contact order with the man accused of sending her obscene images was lifted Friday by a New Jersey judge. The judge agreed to lift the order barring contact between Chelsea O'Donnell and 25-year-old Steven Sheerer, according to a spokesman for the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office. Chelsea O'Donnell was 17 when Sheerer was arrested last month; she now is 18. Superior Court Judge Wendel Daniels, in Toms River, also reduced Sheerer's bail to $10,000 with an option to pay 10 percent. It was previously set at $40,000 with no 10 percent option. A representative for the teenager's comedian mother didn't immediately respond to an email r




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