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St. Louis County police urged to strengthen protest planning

ST. LOUIS — St. Louis County police must strengthen policies for handling protests, improve training on diversity and community policing, and do a better job of hiring and promoting minorities and women, according to a report released Friday by the Department of Justice. It was the third and final federal review stemming from the unrest […]

Proposal would erase Confederate sign from Mississippi flag

JACKSON, Miss. — A new proposal seeks a statewide election on removing the Confederate battle emblem from the Mississippi flag. But it could be years before the issue gets on the ballot, and there’s no guarantee voters would accept it. State officials said Friday that a resident of the capital city of Jackson filed paperwork […]

East Coast likely to dodge hurricane, but flooding looms

CAPE COD, Mass. — Millions along the East Coast breathed a little easier Friday after forecasters said Hurricane Joaquin would probably veer out to sea. But a freakishly powerful rainstorm fueled in part by the hurricane threatened to bring ruinous flooding to parts of the Atlantic Seaboard over the weekend. With the soil already soggy […]

Drenching rains causing problems along East Coast

SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Drenching rains along an already-saturated East Coast caused major flooding Thursday, drowning a woman whose car quickly filled up with water as she drove beneath an underpass and prompting flash-flood warnings from historic Charleston to Washington, D.C. An early-morning downpour dumped 4 inches of rain on Spartanburg in a short time, causing […]

EPA sets new ozone standard, disappointing all sides

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Thursday established stricter limits on the smog-causing pollution linked to asthma and respiratory illness, drawing swift condemnation from business leaders and Republicans who warned of damage to the economy. The Environmental Protection Agency said the new standard of 70 parts per billion will reduce exposure to dangerous ozone pollution […]

Senators reach deal to reduce prison time for some offenders

WASHINGTON — Senate conservatives and liberals on Thursday united behind an overhaul of the criminal justice system, a rare bipartisan agreement that would allow some nonviolent drug offenders to get reduced prison sentences and give judges greater discretion in sentencing. The legislation, years in the making, comes as disparate voices have spoken as one in […]

NY Police Department announces reforms amid critical report

NEW YORK — Amid concerns about excessive force, the New York Police Department unveiled a new program on Thursday to document physical encounters officers have with the public and to discourage using force in the first place. The 35,000-officer department, the nation’s largest, touted the initiative as a way to track and analyze all instances […]

Authorities ask family of missing persons for DNA, records

SANTA ANA — Authorities are urging Southern California residents with missing family members to give DNA samples to try to find them among unidentified human remains. In Orange County, the Sheriff’s Department Coroner Division is hosting an event Saturday to try to identify the missing by speaking with their relatives and collecting photographs, dental records […]

California couple charged after woman found locked in shed

LOS ANGELES — A woman found locked in a storage shed behind a Los Angeles County home appeared malnourished and had old and fresh wounds, investigators said Tuesday as the woman’s brother and his girlfriend remained held on charges of torture, abuse and false imprisonment. It was unclear how long the 54-year-old woman had been […]

Large numbers of Guadalupe fur seals dying off California

LOS ANGELES — Scientists are looking at ocean-warming trends to figure out why endangered Guadalupe fur seals are stranding themselves and dying in alarming numbers along the central California coast. Approximately 80 emaciated fur seals have come ashore since January — about eight times more than normal — leading the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration […]

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