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  • Court blocks part of new North Carolina voting law

    RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Parts of North Carolina's new voting law, considered one of the toughest in the nation, were set aside for next month's elections because they were likely to disenfranchise black voters, a federal appeals court panel ruled Wednesday. In a 2-1 ruling, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals suspended provisions of the...

  • Cuba says it's likely to increase money supply

    HAVANA (AP) — The planned elimination of Cuba's unusual dual-currency system will likely mean printing more of the single currency that remains, the country's central bank chief said in a report published Wednesday. Elimination of the double currency was announced last year, although no date has been set for the monetary unification. Cubans...

  • Guatemala ex-police on trial in 1980 embassy fire

    GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — A former police officer went on trial Wednesday charged in the deaths of 37 people more than three decades ago when the Spanish Embassy burned down during this Central American nation's bloody civil conflict. Pedro Garcia Arredondo, the 69-year-old former special investigations chief for the Sixth Commando of the National...

  • Canada identifies long lost British explorer ship

    TORONTO (AP) — Experts identified a shipwreck uncovered last month in the Arctic as the HMS Erebus, the ship British Rear Adm. Sir John Franklin was likely sailing on when it vanished along with another vessel 170 years ago, Canada's prime minister announced Wednesday. Experts believed the shipwreck was either the HMS Erebus and the HMS...

  • Oregon man gets 30 years in Christmas bomb plot

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A young Somali American was sentenced Wednesday to 30 years in prison for plotting to detonate a bomb in Portland's downtown square while 10,000 revelers gathered to watch the mayor light a towering Christmas tree. Prosecutors had sought a 40-year term for Mohamed Mohamud, 23, in the 2010 plot that actually was an FBI...

  • Texan bids for Nuremberg stenographer's mementos

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Dallas woman has bid $9,000 for documents from the Nuremberg trials that were found in an old trunk in Alaska that belonged to a postwar stenographer. Fran Berg was the highest bidder for the items in an auction of World War II memorabilia Saturday by Anchorage-based Alaska Auction Co. The collection, which includes...

  • Prosecutor to seek death penalty in beheading

    NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Cleveland County District Attorney Greg Mashburn says he plans to seek the death penalty against a man accused of beheading a woman at an Oklahoma food processing plant. Mashburn told The Associated Press Wednesday that he discussed his plans with the victim's family and that he could file the paperwork as early as this...

  • Wife of slain Los Angeles-area mayor released

    BELL GARDENS, Calif. (AP) — In the small, modest Los Angeles suburb of Bell Gardens, neighbors of Mayor Daniel Crespo struggled Wednesday to come to terms with how the friendly, outgoing political leader could have been shot to death by his wife of 28 years. Sheriff's officials who interviewed both Crespo's wife and son said Levette Crespo...

  • Girl, 10, dies from complications of enterovirus

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The 10-year-old Rhode Island girl who died from complications of an unusual respiratory virus affecting children across the U.S. was remembered in a family obituary as a sweet child who loved animals and Harry Potter. The state Health Department said Wednesday the girl from Cumberland died last week of a staph infection...

  • Not guilty plea for man in White House incident

    WASHINGTON (AP) — A man accused of jumping a fence at the White House pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges that he ran into the presidential mansion while carrying a knife. A lawyer for defendant Omar J. Gonzalez, David Bos, entered the plea on his client's behalf in a 20-minute proceeding that grew contentious because of a disagreement...

  • Man convicted of murder in killing over loud music

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida man who opened fire on a carload of black teenagers in an argument over their loud "thug" music was convicted Wednesday of first-degree murder. Prosecutors said Michael Dunn, who is white, was shooting to kill when he fired 10 times into a sport utility vehicle outside a convenience store in November 2012....

  • Prison escape plan cited in fatal Vegas crash case

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — An investigator told a judge Wednesday that a self-described pimp already serving prison time for rape and robbery bribed a guard to get cellphones behind bars as part of a plot to escape before his death penalty trial in a fatal Las Vegas Strip shooting and fiery crash. In testimony before a Las Vegas judge hearing evidence...

  • App teaches kindergartners basic computer coding

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — This computer programming app is so easy to use that even a kindergartener can do it. Researchers in Massachusetts have created a basic computer coding app that they say is the first designed specifically for children as young as 5. Kids who haven't yet learned to read can use the app to craft their own interactive...

  • Former President Carter celebrates 90th birthday

    ATLANTA (AP) — Former President Jimmy Carter celebrated his 90th birthday Wednesday in Atlanta, blowing out three candles representing the past, present and future and thanking family and friends for their support and love. "It's been a good first 90 years," the 39th president joked before telling the crowd gathered in a chapel on The Carter...

  • Obama dines with fundraising contest winners

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is breaking bread in Washington with two women who won a fundraising contest to help Democratic Senate candidates. The prize is dinner with Obama. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee identified the winners as Hannah Banks, an architect from the Boston area, and Andrea Abrahams, a court clerk...

  • Conviction upheld in reverse racism murder case

    NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Kagan had been in prison for murder for more than a decade when doubts about his guilt arose from an uncommon source: the former judge who had convicted him. The reason was more extraordinary still: The now-retired, white jurist felt he had been swayed by bias against Kagan, also white, in the killing of a black man. On...

  • US snowboarder killed in avalanche in Argentina

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — A U.S. snowboarder, climber and mountain guide has been killed in an avalanche in Argentina. Liz Daley, 29, from Tacoma, Washington, died Monday in the Fitz Roy Massif region outside El Chalten, Argentina. Her sponsor, Eddie Bauer, confirmed the death in a statement. Daley was on a ski mountaineering expedition...

  • Texas appeals court upholds DeLay reversal

    HOUSTON (AP) — The highest criminal court in Texas refused Wednesday to reinstate two money-laundering convictions against former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, ending a nearly decade-long criminal case against the one-time GOP heavyweight. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals upheld a ruling last year from the 3rd Court of Appeals that...

  • 3 Afghan soldiers who fled say they can't go home

    BATAVIA, N.Y. (AP) — Three Afghan military officers who sought refuge in Canada after taking off from a military training exercise in Massachusetts said Wednesday they were trying to escape Taliban violence at home but now face the wrath of their own government as well. "Now that we've decided to seek asylum, the danger has multiplied," said...

  • Girl missing for 12 years found with mom in Mexico

    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Texas girl reported kidnapped 12 years ago was found near Mexico City with her mother after authorities received a tip, and the mother was quickly flown to Texas and jailed on kidnapping charges, investigators said Wednesday. The FBI and Mexico authorities said 17-year-old Sabrina Allen, whose case was twice profiled on...