1 Worker Killed, 1 Hurt in New Mexico Oil Field Explosion

HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — An explosion at a New Mexico oil field site has killed one worker and injured another. Authorities say preliminary information indicates the workers were loading material into perforated pipe being installed into a drilling pipe in southern Lea County when the blast occurred Wednesday. The sheriff’s office says metal debris from the explosion struck the victims.

It’s not yet known what caused the blast, and the sheriff’s department says an investigation is underway. There was no fire following the explosion. Continue Reading

Police Arrest St. Louis Man Suspected of Kidnapping

O’FALLON, Mo. (AP) — Police have arrested a man suspected of kidnapping a 10-year-old girl after he stopped at a suburban St. Louis checkpoint with the child in his vehicle. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the girl was reported missing from her burglarized home around 5:25 a.m. Thursday. Continue Reading

Soldiers Presumed Dead After Army Helicopter Crash in Florida

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) — A military official says the seven Marines and four soldiers aboard an Army helicopter that crashed over waters off Florida during a training mission are presumed dead. The Pentagon official said Wednesday that the 11 service members are presumed dead and that the Coast Guard found debris in the water. The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the official wasn’t authorized to speak on the record. Andy Bourland, a spokesman for Elgin Air Force Base outside Pensacola, says the UH-60 Black Hawk from the Army National Guard was reported missing around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, and crews found debris around 2 a.m.

The area was under a fog advisory Wednesday. Continue Reading

White House Won’t Say if President Obama Has Private Email

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is declining to say whether President Barack Obama has a private email account like one used by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that has sparked a political furor. White House spokesman Eric Schultz said Tuesday aboard Air Force One en route with Obama to Atlanta that the White House doesn’t discuss Obama’s email account publicly to guard the security of the president’s communications. He said, however, that anything Obama sends or receives is preserved, including his emails with Clinton. Schultz says Obama understands the scholarly value of such material and says the White House abides by rules requiring that email communications be archived. Obama, in an interview with CBS news Saturday said his emails, including those he receives on his Blackberry, are records that are archived. Continue Reading

Wisconsin Chief Treading Carefully after Fatal Shooting

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The police chief in Wisconsin’s capital city is treading carefully to try to avoid destructive protests after one of his officers killed an unarmed black man. Chief Mike Koval has said Officer Matt Kenny, who is white, opened fire after he was assaulted by 19-year-old Tony Robinson on Friday. Koval told the Wisconsin State Journal newspaper in September that he felt confident that if his department was in a similar situation it wouldn’t repeat the missteps of Ferguson that contributed to riots in that Missouri city after a white officer shot an unarmed black man. Koval is striking a conciliatory tone, acknowledging people are angry and says he’s sorry a young person lost his life. Continue Reading

Doctor Describes Pulling Harrison Ford from Plane Wreckage

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The doctor who helped treat Harrison Ford after his vintage plane crash-landed on a golf course says he found the actor slumped over in the cockpit but conscious. Spinal surgeon Sanjay Khurana was golfing next to Santa Monica Airport when he saw the plane “belly flop” and rushed to the fairway where it came to rest. He tells TV stations in Los Angeles that aside from worrying about Ford’s injuries from the impact, he saw fuel leaking out of the World War II-era plane. He and other golfers pulled Ford from the wreckage. Others threw dirt on the fuel so it wouldn’t catch fire. Continue Reading

Ohio Man Calls 911, Reports that his Wife ‘Stole his Cocaine’

ALLIANCE, Ohio (AP) — Police say a northeast Ohio man called 911 to report that his wife stole his cocaine and was then arrested himself. The Review newspaper in Alliance reports officers responding to the Wednesday night call discovered the man had a marijuana pipe and was wanted on a warrant for failing to pay hundreds of dollars in costs in an earlier court case. The man, 39-year-old Robert D. Collins of Alliance, was charged with two misdemeanor counts alleging improper use of the 911 system and possession of drug paraphernalia. Alliance Municipal Court records online didn’t list an attorney for him Friday. The Repository in nearby Canton reports Collins’ jail records didn’t indicate whether police located the reportedly stolen cocaine or his wife. Continue Reading

Jodi Arias Won’t be Sentenced to Death after Jury Deadlocks

PHOENIX (AP) — Convicted murderer Jodi Arias has been spared the death penalty after jurors deadlocked on whether she should be executed or sent to prison for life for killing her lover in 2008. The decision in a Phoenix courtroom Thursday means the judge will sentence Arias on April 13 to either life in prison or a life term with the possibility of release after 25 years. Family members of victim Travis Alexander wept when the judge announced that jurors couldn’t reach a decision after deliberating for about 26 hours over five days. Arias’ 2013 trial became a sensation with its tawdry revelations about her relationship with Alexander and that she shot him in the head and slit his throat so deeply that he was nearly decapitated. Continue Reading

Cleveland to Host 1st GOP Presidential Primary Debate

CLEVELAND (AP) — The head of the Republican National Committee says its first primary debate for the next presidential election will be in Cleveland. The RNC previously announced plans to have nine primary debates, starting in Ohio in August. Chairman Reince Priebus confirmed the location in an interview with Cleveland television station WKYC  on Wednesday. The city also is slated for other big visits from the Republicans during the candidate selection process. It is hosting the RNC summer meeting this August and the Republicans’ presidential nominating convention in July 2016. Continue Reading