US missile defense shield to counter NKorea threat

The Pentagon said Wednesday it was deploying a missile defense shield to Guam to protect the U.S. and its allies in the region in response to increasingly hostile rhetoric from North Korea. The North renewed its threat to launch a nuclear attack on the United States. The threat issued by the General Staff of the Korean People’s Army capped a week of psychological warfare and military muscle moves by both sides that have rattled the region. On Wednesday, the Pentagon announced it will deploy a land-based, high-altitude missile defense system to Guam to strengthen the Asia-Pacific region’s protections against a possible attack. Pyongyang, for its part, said that America’s ever-escalating hostile policy toward North Korea “will be smashed” by the North’s nuclear strike and the “merciless operation” of its armed forces. Continue Reading

Suspect sought after civilian worker killed in shooting at Fort Knox

An Army civilian employee died after a shooting at Fort Knox in Kentucky Wednesday afternoon in a parking lot outside the base’s Human Resources Command headquarters. The victim, who was a human resources employee, was transported by ambulance to Ireland Army Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead. “Special Agents from the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command are investigating a personal incident and not a random act of violence,” spokesperson for the independent Army investigative agency Chris Grey said. The victim’s name is being withheld until 24 hours after the family is notified. Police are looking for a possible suspect who may be using a Yamaha motorcycle for transportation. Continue Reading

Man shot dead at home of Colo. prosecutor, deputy

Authorities in Colorado say a Michigan man who died after an altercation outside the home of a sheriff’s deputy and a prosecutor was shot multiple times. Grand County coroner’s officials said Wednesday that 32-year-old Joshua Lee Stevens, of Coral, Mich., died of gunshot wounds to the torso. Authorities say a deputy district attorney for Colorado’s 14th Judicial District called 911 late Monday to report a stranger behaving erratically outside her home. Shots were fired after the person tried to force his way in. The prosecutor and her husband, who is a sheriff’s deputy, had minor injuries. Continue Reading

US home prices rose in February by most in 7 years

U.S. home prices jumped in February by the largest amount in seven years, evidence that the housing recovery strengthened ahead of the all-important spring-buying season. Home prices rose 10.2 percent in February compared with a year earlier, CoreLogic, a real estate data provider, said Wednesday. The annual gain was the biggest since March 2006. Prices have now increased on an annual basis for 12 straight months, underscoring the recovery’s steady momentum. The gains were broad-based. Continue Reading

Lewinsky lawyer William H. Ginsburg dies at 70

William H. Ginsburg, who was Monica Lewinsky’s lawyer during the sex scandal of the Clinton presidency, has died. He was 70. His daughter-in-law, Virginia Ginsburg, tells the Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/12eIurv ) that Ginsburg died of cancer on Monday at his home in the Sherman Oaks section of Los Angeles. An obituary notice also appeared in the Los Angeles Daily News (http://bit.ly/16niniL ). Ginsburg was a medical malpractice attorney and a friend of the Lewinsky family when he agreed to represent her in 1998. Continue Reading

4 killed after Florida police chase ends with deadly crash

Four innocent people died Wednesday morning on I-95, south of Fort Lauderdale, after a high-speed police chase ended on the wrong side of the road, WSVN.com reported. The Florida Highway Patrol says the crash happened early Wednesday. They say police were pursuing a sport utility vehicle when it headed northbound in the interstate’s southbound lanes and collided with a minivan, the Miami Herald reported. Authorities say the driver of the SUV was taken to the hospital with two broken legs. Opa-locka police spokesman David Chiverton says officers had stopped pursuing the SUV before it got onto I-95. Continue Reading

State closes Pa. day care after duct tape report

The Department of Public Welfare has shut down a northeastern Pennsylvania day care after reports that a child was duct-taped and otherwise mistreated. Welfare officials tell WNEP-TV (http://bit.ly/XIJG7J ) that owner Doreen Tomasetti is appealing the shutdown of Just 4 Kids Day Care and Learning Center in Hamlin. Nobody answered the facility’s phone on Wednesday and a cellphone number given on a voice mail message was out of service. Tomasetti doesn’t have a listed home phone. Welfare officials say two workers held a child upside-down by his ankles to stop him from biting staff and made the boy walk around in underwear to punish him for soiling his pants. Continue Reading

NY barber who survived rampage says he played dead

The barber who survived last month’s shooting rampage in neighboring central New York villages says he played dead and prayed after being wounded by the gunman who opened fire inside two businesses, wounding another man and killing four others. John Seymour of Ilion tells the Utica-Observer Dispatch (http://bit.ly/Z0eJYF ) that he initially thought Kurt Myers was carrying an umbrella when he walked into the barbershop in Mohawk on March 13. The object turned out to be a shotgun that Myers used to shoot the 66-year-old Seymour and three of his customers. Seymour and Dan Haslauer survived, but Michael Ransear and Harry Montgomery Sr. were killed. Myers then drove to neighboring Herkimer, where he fatally shot two men inside Gaffey’s Fast Lube. Continue Reading

Illinois U-S Senator Kirk Announces Support of Gay Marriage

CHICAGO (AP) — Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois says he supports same-sex marriage.  

Kirk said in a post on his blog yesterday that same-sex couples should have the right to civil marriage. He says what matters in life is who you love and “government has no place in the middle.” Kirk previously voted to end the policy barring gays from openly serving in the military, known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” He’s a lead co-sponsor of a bill to ban employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, and has opposed a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. Continue Reading