[SeMissourian.com] Mostly Cloudy ~ 23°F  
River stage: 10.95 ft. Rising
Friday, Feb. 27, 2015

National News

Militants abduct more Christians, smash ancient artifacts (02/27/15)
BEIRUT -- Islamic State militants seized more Christians from their homes in northeastern Syria in the past three days, bringing the total number abducted by the extremist group to over 220, activists said Thursday. At the same time, the extremists also released a video showing the continued destruction of the heritage of the lands under their control. It depicted men using sledgehammers to smash ancient Mesopotamian statues and other artifacts in Iraq's northern city of Mosul...
2 loose llamas lassoed after running amok near Phoenix (02/27/15)
SUN CITY, Ariz. -- Two quick-footed llamas that dashed in and out of traffic in a Phoenix-area retirement community were captured by authorities Thursday, causing a stir in the streets and on social media. Television footage showed a large, white llama and a smaller, black llama darting through the streets of Sun City during the lunch hour. ...
'Jihadi John' identified as London-raised college grad (02/27/15)
LONDON -- The world knows him as "Jihadi John," the masked, knife-wielding militant in videos showing Western hostages being beheaded by the Islamic State group. On Thursday, he was identified as a London-raised university graduate known to British intelligence for more than five years...
Regulators approve tougher rules for Internet providers (02/27/15)
WASHINGTON -- Internet activists declared victory over the nation's big cable companies Thursday after the Federal Communications Commission voted to impose the toughest rules yet on broadband providers like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T to prevent them from creating paid fast lanes and slowing or blocking web traffic...
Pot fight between DC Mayor, Congress could cost the city (02/27/15)
WASHINGTON -- The new mayor of the nation's capital was hoping to get along fine with Republicans on Capitol Hill. Instead, they've threatened her with prison, and she has accused them of acting like bullies in a showdown over legal pot that could end up costing District of Columbia residents dearly...
Today in History (02/27/15)
Today is Friday, Feb. 27, the 58th day of 2015. There are 307 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: On Feb. 27, 1933, Germany's parliament building, the Reichstag, was gutted by fire. Chancellor Adolf Hitler, blaming the Communists, used the fire to justify suspending civil liberties...
Deadline near, deal sets up Homeland Security vote in Senate (02/26/15)
WASHINGTON -- Three days before a partial Homeland Security shutdown, lawmakers cleared the way Wednesday for Senate passage of legislation to fund the agency without immigration-related provisions opposed by President Barack Obama. Approval in the Senate would send the issue to the House, where some conservatives derided the plan as a surrender to the White House. Other Republicans predicted it would clear, but Speaker John Boehner declined to say if he would put it to a vote...
Justices appear to favor Muslim denied job over headscarf (02/26/15)
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court indicated Wednesday it will side with a Muslim woman who didn't get hired by clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch because she wore a black headscarf that conflicted with the company's dress code to her job interview...
Official says Afghan avalanches kill at least 124 people (02/26/15)
PANJSHIR VALLEY, Afghanistan -- Avalanches killed at least 124 people in northeast Afghanistan, an emergency official said Wednesday, as rescuers clawed through debris with their hands to save those buried. The avalanches buried homes across four northeast provinces, killing those beneath, said Mohammad Aslam Syas, the deputy director of the Afghanistan Natural Disaster Management Authority...
Trayvon Martin's mother says killer got away with murder (02/26/15)
MIAMI -- The mother of Trayvon Martin says she's disappointed federal prosecutors decided not to charge a neighborhood watch volunteer with a hate crime for killing her son three years ago. Speaking on Wednesday before the third anniversary of her 17-year-old son's death, Sybrina Fulton said she still believes George Zimmerman got away with murder...
Three accused of trying to join ISIS (02/26/15)
NEW YORK -- Three men were arrested Wednesday on charges of plotting to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State group and wage war against the United States, and federal officials said one of them spoke of shooting President Barack Obama or planting a bomb on Coney Island...
Computer bests humans at 'Space Invaders' (02/26/15)
Software learns to play Atari games from the 1980s, but it isn't so great at Ms. Pac-Man WASHINGTON -- Computers already have bested human champions in "Jeopardy!" and chess, but artificial intelligence now has gone to master an entirely new level: "Space Invaders."...
Strong reliability scores should help Buick brand's rebirth (02/26/15)
DETROIT -- Buick, the brand that once was the pace car for the drive to the senior center, has made a comeback by appealing to buyers not yet ready for retirement. U.S. sales rose 11 percent in 2014. In China, Buick's biggest market, sales gained almost 14 percent...
Lawsuit filed against Purina claims food sickens, kills dogs (02/26/15)
SAN FRANCISCO -- A dog owner has filed a lawsuit against a pet food company alleging that thousands of dogs have been sickened or died from eating a brand of the company's dry dog food. Pet owner Frank Lucido filed the suit Feb. 5 in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California against Nestle Purina PetCare Co...
Life-saving train design rarely is used (02/26/15)
LOS ANGELES -- Perhaps the most remarkable thing about the collision between a Southern California commuter train and a truck abandoned on the tracks was this: No one died, and only eight people on board were admitted to hospitals. Officials with the Metrolink train system credit cars designed to blunt the tremendous force of a head-on collision...
Today in History (02/26/15)
Today is Thursday, Feb. 26, the 57th day of 2015. There are 308 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: On Feb. 26, 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte escaped from exile on the Island of Elba and headed back to France in a bid to regain power. On this date:...
Defying GOP, Obama vetoes Keystone XL pipeline bill (02/25/15)
WASHINGTON -- Defying the Republican-run Congress, President Barack Obama rejected a bill Tuesday to approve construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, wielding his veto power for only the third time in his presidency. Obama offered no indication of whether he'll eventually issue a permit for the pipeline, whose construction has become a flashpoint in the U.S. ...
Man selling, shipping snow from his yard (02/25/15)
MANCHESTER-by-the-SEA, Mass. -- A man has found a way to profit from several feet of snow in his yard: He's shipping it to people in warmer climates for $89 for six pounds. Kyle Waring got the idea while shoveling snow earlier this winter and launched ShipSnowYo.com. Even if the snow melts a little by the time it arrives, the package can still make 10 to 15 snowballs. He also has started offering 10-pound packages for $119...
How to find out whether a used car has an unrepaired recall (02/25/15)
About 5 million used cars under recall were sold last year before the recalled parts were fixed. A study by Carfax, which sells vehicle history reports, showed overall, there are more than 46 million cars and trucks on U.S. roads with unrepaired safety recalls...
Fed chief Yellen navigates tricky path on interest rates (02/25/15)
WASHINGTON -- Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen navigated the tricky job of managing expectations Tuesday in her first public comments on interest rate policy in more than two months. She wanted the world to know the Fed isn't ready yet to raise rates from record lows. ...
Man convicted in deaths of 'American Sniper' author, friend (02/25/15)
STEPHENVILLE, Texas -- A former Marine was convicted Tuesday in the deaths of the "American Sniper" author and another man at a shooting range two years ago, as jurors rejected defense arguments that he was insane and suffered from psychosis. The trial of Eddie Ray Routh has drawn intense interest, in part because of the blockbuster film based on former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle's memoir about his four tours in Iraq...
3 missing schoolgirls may have entered Syria (02/25/15)
LONDON -- Police investigating the disappearance of three British schoolgirls said Tuesday they believe the teenagers are no longer in Turkey and have crossed into Syria -- likely joining dozens of other young women leaving Europe to join terrorists...
Toddler dies of measles in Berlin (02/25/15)
BERLIN -- An 18-month-old boy has died of measles in Berlin, the first known death in an outbreak of the disease that has seen more than 570 cases in the German capital since October. An autopsy on the child, who died Feb. 18 and wasn't immunized against measles, showed he had an unspecified medical condition, but it wouldn't have led to his death without the measles infection, the Charite hospital said Tuesday...
Ukraine disputes rebel claim that weapons pullback begins (02/25/15)
ILOVAYSK, Ukraine -- Russian-backed separatists moved some heavy weapons back from the front line Tuesday in eastern Ukraine, but the Ukrainian government disputed the rebels' claim that a real pullback had begun. A peace plan worked out in marathon talks Feb. ...
Dozens of Christians abducted by ISIS (02/25/15)
BEIRUT -- The Islamic State militants struck before dawn, staging house-to-house raids in a cluster of villages nestled along the Khabur River in northeastern Syria. They abducted at least 70 Christians -- many of them women and children -- while thousands of others fled to safer areas...
Latest headlines
  • Parents of slain journalist: Next 'Jihadi John' is on way
    TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) -- The parents of an American journalist beheaded by the Islamic State group say they are surprised a college-educated, London-raised man is the masked militant known as "Jihadi John" from the video of their son's slaying but also realize stopping him won't end the bloodshed.
  • Head injury to suspect as child could be used by defense
    LAS VEGAS (AP) -- A fractured skull suffered by an infant nearly two decades ago at the hands of his father might become a factor as lawyers defend the now 19-year-old man against charges connected to the killing of a Las Vegas mother in a neighborhood gunbattle, his lawyer said Friday.
  • Tribes from around US gather to discuss legal marijuana
    TULALIP, Wash. (AP) -- The Justice Department's December announcement that it would allow the nation's Indian tribes to legalize and regulate marijuana on their reservations brought notes of caution -- if not silence or opposition -- from many tribes.
  • Driver freed without charges in California train crash
    OXNARD, Calif. (AP) -- Federal investigators said a pickup truck driver who turned on to railroad tracks before a crash that derailed a California commuter train made a "mistake," while prosecutors released him from jail as they considered whether to pursue criminal charges.
  • 8 shot to death, including gunman, in Missouri rampage
    TYRONE, Mo. (AP) -- A man who authorities say may have been unhinged by the death of his ailing mother went on a house-to-house shooting rampage in a small town in the Missouri Ozarks, killing seven people before taking his own life.
  • Why would GOP candidate for Missouri governor kill himself?
    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri's auditor, who fatally shot himself in an apparent suicide, had vowed to take down the state's most powerful politicians and donors, including his fellow Republicans, when he launched an anti-corruption campaign for governor last month.
  • Black Madam: Amber Rose hired me for buttocks injections
    PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- A Gothic hip-hop artist charged with killing a London break dancer with an illegal buttocks injection name-dropped her way through testimony Friday, claiming that one of the celebrities who sought her out became "a walking billboard" for her work.
  • Indiana may allow 'baby boxes' for surrendering newborns
    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- On the outside, the metal box looks like an oversized bread container. But what's inside could save an abandoned newborn's life.
  • Testimony: Several Hernandez texts are missing from phone
    FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) -- Texts and phone records shown to jurors Friday in the murder trial of former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez showed that several messages he exchanged with a co-defendant before the killing were deleted from his phone.
  • New charges for group that disrupted Supreme Court
    WASHINGTON (AP) -- Prosecutors took a hard line Thursday with demonstrators who participated in a rare disruption inside the U.S. Supreme Court, adding additional charges against them and saying disrupting the high court is different from other protests in the nation's capital.