Wisconsin wildfire started by logging operations

Prosecutors announced Thursday they won’t file charges against loggers whose equipment apparently started a massive wildfire in northwestern Wisconsin, concluding there was no criminal intent or negligence. The fire began Tuesday afternoon in the woods near Simms Lake in Douglas County, about 40 miles southeast of Duluth, Minn. It consumed 8,131 acres, destroyed 17 homes and forced dozens of people to evacuate before firefighters contained it late Wednesday evening. No injuries have been reported. The state Department of Natural Resources released a statement Thursday saying logging equipment started the fire. Continue Reading

Authorities arrest Uzbekistan man in Idaho for allegedly providing support to terrorists

U.S. authorities in Idaho said Thursday they have arrested an Uzbekistan national on federal terrorism charges. Federal prosecutors said Fazliddin Kurbanov, 30, was arrested in Boise on Thursday after a grand jury issued a three-count indictment as part of a terrorism investigation. The indictment charges Kurbanov with one count of conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization and one count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists. The indictment also alleges he possessed an unregistered explosive device. A separate federal grand jury in Utah also returned an indictment charging Kurbanov with distributing information about explosives, bombs and weapons of mass destruction. Continue Reading

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Iowa Governor Salary Increase

A new bill is being proposed by Terry Branstad that would give some nice raises to future Iowa elected officials. 

The bill also proposes salary increases for union-represented workers. Legislative leaders say the bill is unlikely to advance. If for some reason it does though, the next governor will go from making $130,000 to $141,710. Continue Reading

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Click it or Ticket this Weekend

Iowa law enforcement is urging you to buckle up this Memorial Day weekend. The busy driving season is almost here so officers will be out full force as part of the 2013 National “Click it or Ticket” seat belt enforcement immobilization. The seat belt crack down runs from May 20th to June 2nd, although officers are enforcing seat belt laws year round. If you’re not strapped in, be prepared to get a ticket. Continue Reading

Obama Summons Military Leaders to Talk Sexual Assault

WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation’s top defense leaders have been summoned to the White House to talk about the military’s sexual assault crisis.  

The Pentagon’s top general, Martin Dempsey, said yesterday that women in uniform are losing confidence that the problem will be solved. An administration official says President Barack Obama plans to meet this afternoon with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, the members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and others. The Pentagon has also scheduled a briefing for journalists today with Hagel and Dempsey. New sexual assault allegations emerged this week involving an Army soldier who was assigned to prevent such crimes. Continue Reading

9,000 Acre NW Wisconsin Wildfire Biggest in 33 Years

TOWN OF GORDON, Wis. (AP) — Firefighters battling a 9,000-acre in northwestern Wisconsin have contained the massive blaze.  

Department of Natural Resources spokesman Robert Manwell said Thursday the fire in Douglas and Bayfield counties is 100 percent contained. Manwell says fire crews will be handling small brush fires and reworking the lines that contain the wildfire. Authorities opened all roads in the area overnight and some residents headed back to their homes. Continue Reading

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Texas Tornadoes Kill at Least 6, Injure More Than 3 Dozen

GRANBURY, Texas (AP) — The sheriff in Hood County, Texas, says seven people are still unaccounted for after last night’s tornadoes, which left at least six people dead.  

Sheriff Roger Deeds says authorities hope the missing are all staying with family or friends. He says 37 injured people were treated at hospitals. The tornadoes blew windows from homes, threw trailers into cars and scattered bodies. The mayor tells ABC that the top priority now is to get the survivors into shelters. Continue Reading

Police shoot car theft suspect at Fla. airport

Police shot a teenager and arrested another suspect while investigating a car theft inside a rental car return area at Jacksonville International Airport in Florida. The shooting happened Wednesday afternoon. Police tried to stop the vehicle after tracking it to the parking garage at the airport. When they tried to stop it, the driver rammed two police vehicles and another car. The Florida Times-Union (http://bit.ly/17xj5Pi ) reports an officer shot at the car as it drove away. Continue Reading

Jury resumes talks in Ohio case hinging on blinks

Jurors began a third day of deliberations in a Cincinnati murder trial revolving around whether a dying, paralyzed man identified his shooter by blinking his eyes. The jury in the trial of 35-year-old Ricardo Woods, of Cincinnati, began discussions Tuesday afternoon and didn’t reach a verdict Wednesday. Jurors reconvened Thursday morning. Woods is accused of shooting David Chandler in 2010. Chandler was left paralyzed from the neck down and unable to speak before his death about two weeks later. Continue Reading