French Nat’l Assembly to Vote on Gay Marriage

PARIS (AP) — Police say legions of officers and a small battery of water cannon are at France’s National Assembly as lawmakers prepare for a final vote to legalize gay marriage.  

Christophe Crepin, spokesman for the police union UNSA, says the extraordinary security is in place protectively for Tuesday’s vote. In recent weeks, violent attacks against gay couples have spiked and some legislators have received threats — including one who got a gunpowder-filled envelope. One protest against gay marriage ended with some demonstrators fighting police and damaging cars along the Champs-Elysees avenue. When President Francois Hollande promised to legalize gay marriage, it was seen as relatively uncontroversial. Continue Reading

Most Rivers Falling, but More Rain May Change That

CLARKSVILLE, Mo. (AP) — The rain that’s expected from Oklahoma to Michigan through today could bring some stretches of rivers to an even higher crest than had been forecast earlier.  

A hydrologist with the National Weather Service says the latest dousing could be especially troubling for communities along the Illinois River, which is headed for record-high crests. In Clarksville, Mo., on the Mississippi River, a makeshift floodwall of sand and gravel is showing signs of strain, and crews are scrambling to patch trouble spots. Additional rain could be troublesome in Michigan, too, where the Grand River drove hundreds from their homes in Grand Rapids and flooded downtown. Continue Reading

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Mass. Authorities Say More Charges Await Tsarnaev

BOSTON (AP) — He’s already been charged with using a weapon of mass destruction, in the Boston Marathon bombings — but more charges are ahead for Dzokhar Tsarnaev. State prosecutors expect to charge him separately in the killing of an MIT police officer who was shot in his cruiser Thursday night on the school’s campus in Cambridge. Federal prosecutors could also add new charges when he’s indicted in the bombing. Still unable to speak because of wounds, Tsarnaev answered questions in writing yesterday. U.S. officials say Tsarnaev and his brother appear to have been motivated by their religious views, not any connection to any Muslim terrorist groups. Continue Reading

Faith eyed as motive in marathon attack, as suspect communicates by writing

The two brothers suspected of bombing the Boston Marathon appear to have been motivated by a radical brand of Islam but do not seem connected to any Muslim terrorist groups, U.S. officials said Monday after interrogating and charging Dzhokhar Tsarnaev with crimes that could bring the death penalty. Tsarnaev, 19, was charged in his hospital room, where he was in serious condition with a gunshot wound to the throat and other injuries suffered during his attempted getaway. His older brother, Tamerlan, 26, died Friday after a fierce gunbattle with police. The Massachusetts college student was charged with using and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction. He was accused of joining with his brother in setting off the shrapnel-packed pressure-cooker bombs that killed three people and wounded more than 200 a week ago. Continue Reading

Officials: Bomb suspects appear driven by faith

The two brothers suspected of bombing the Boston Marathon appear to have been motivated by their religious faith but do not seem connected to any Muslim terrorist groups, U.S. officials said Monday after interrogating the severely wounded younger man. He was charged with federal crimes that could bring the death penalty. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, was charged in his hospital room with using a weapon of mass destruction to kill. He was accused of joining with his older brother, Tamerlan — now dead — in setting off the pressure-cooker bombs that killed three people and wounded more than 200 a week ago. The brothers, ethnic Chechens from Russia who had been living in the U.S. for about a decade, practiced Islam. Continue Reading

Boston victim Krystle Campbell remembered at funeral as happy, generous

Hundreds of family and friends packed a church in Medford, Mass., for the funeral of a Boston Marathon bombing victim, while dozens more waited outside after being turned away. Gov. Deval Patrick and Cardinal Sean O’Malley were among the people who attended the funeral Mass Monday for 29-year-old Krystle Campbell at St. Joseph Church in her hometown. Campbell was one of three people killed near the finish line a week ago. The restaurant manager had gone to watch a friend finish the race. Continue Reading

Coast Guard repatriates 32 Cuban migrants

The U.S. Coast Guard has repatriated 32 Cuban migrants who were recently picked up in waters off South Florida and the Keys. A cutter dropped off the migrants Thursday in Bahia de Cabanas, Cuba. They had been interdicted in three different cases since April 12. Officials say 13 migrants were picked up April 12 after a Carnival cruise ship reported a rustic vessel near Key West. The same day, a Coast Guard ship picked up another 17 migrants, also near Key West. Continue Reading

W.Va. investigating death of Md. man

Authorities in West Virginia are investigating the death of a 28-year-old man who had been competing in an endurance course. Berkeley County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ted Snyder says Avishek Sengupta of Ellicott City, Md., was found Saturday in water at the “Walk the Plank” obstacle of a “Tough Mudder” endurance event near Glengary. He died Sunday at a northern Virginia hospital. The Virginia medical examiner’s office in Manassas said an autopsy has been completed but a cause of death wasn’t immediately available. Continue Reading

5 killed after van overturns during Border Patrol pursuit

Authorities say five people died after the van they were traveling in rolled over in southern Arizona as it was being pursued by Border Patrol agents. Rural/Metro Fire spokesman Willie Treatch says 22 people were in the van at the time it rolled over Saturday night in between Tucson and Benson, Ariz. Seventeen other people were taken to hospitals for treatment. Their injuries are unknown. Treatch says he didn’t know the circumstances of the vehicle pursuit by the Border Patrol. Continue Reading