Evacuations called off as fire north of LA calms

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (AP) — Officials say a fast-growing wildfire north of Los Angeles is burning near power stations transmission lines and homes are being evacuated. The U.S. Forest Service says the fire started Thursday afternoon in the…

FBI: Ricin letter to Obama sent from Wash.

SEATTLE (AP) — The FBI says a suspicious letter containing the deadly poison ricin was mailed to President Barack Obama from Spokane, Wash., on the same day similar ricin-tainted letters were mailed to a federal judge and a…
Holly Welch

Teacher of the Year Honored

Holly Welch teaches bio-technology at Choffin Career and Technical Center. She has been with Youngstown City Schools for 12 years and has been nominated three other times for the award, including in 2005, 2006 and 2008.…

Venezuela’s dancing devils mark Corpus Cristi

SAN FRANCISCO DE YARE, Venezuela (AP) — The descendants of African slaves donned masks and bright red costumes as they danced through the streets of this small Venezuelan town on Thursday for its annual commemoration of Corpus Cristi.…

Obama spends a night out with his family

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is spending a night out with his family after a week of presidential duties that took him from Oklahoma to Illinois. The White House says Obama attended a choral concert Thursday evening…

Indonesian leader gets religious ‘statesman’ award

NEW YORK (AP) — Indonesia’s president has accepted a statesmanship award from a U.S. interfaith foundation that said it hoped to encourage him to promote freedom of worship and tolerance in his country. Human rights groups and Indonesian…

Minaj, Carey not returning to ‘American Idol’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Nicki Minaj is following Mariah Carey out the door on “American Idol.” The hip-hop diva announced Thursday on Twitter that it is “time to focus on the music.” Fox and “Idol” producer FremantleMedia say…

News execs, Holder discuss subpoena issue

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a meeting with Attorney General Eric Holder, news media executives say government officials expressed a commitment to changing guidelines governing issuing subpoenas in criminal investigations involving reporters. The news executives made the comments after…

NC House Speaker Tillis seeks to unseat Sen. Hagan

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina state House Speaker Thom Tillis says he’ll enter the U.S. Senate race to challenge Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan next year. Tillis told The Associated Press in an interview Thursday that he’ll file…

Trash hauler’s record probed in Md. derailment

ROSEDALE, Md. (AP) — A trash hauler whose truck was involved in the explosive derailment of a CSX freight train has a poor safety record, a federal safety board said Thursday about the investigation into the crash and…

Mass. man convicted of racially-motivated killings

BROCKTON, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts man who once appeared in court with a swastika scratched on his forehead has been convicted of two killings authorities say were racially-motivated. Twenty-six-year-old Keith Luke of Brockton displayed no emotion as…

Chicago hotel workers end strike _ after 10 years

CHICAGO (AP) — Striking hotel workers who became a familiar sight on Chicago’s famed Michigan Avenue as they picketed — for 10 years — are ending one of the longest strikes in American history. Their union has offered…

Televised tornado relief concert raises $6 million

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Organizers of a televised benefit concert say they raised more than $6 million in pledges and ticket sales to help people in Oklahoma trying to recover after a deadly tornado last week. A spokeswoman…

APNewsBreak: Ore. Muslim sues FBI, claims torture

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An American Muslim who says he was beaten with batons by prison interrogators while held in solitary confinement overseas for more than three months has sued the FBI and State Department, claiming the torture…

Court OKs deal over discipline in Miss. school

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A federal judge approved a deal Thursday between the U.S. Justice Department and a Mississippi school district to end discriminatory disciplinary practices in which black students face harsher punishment than whites for similar misbehavior,…

Chicago hotel workers end strike _ after 10 years

CHICAGO (AP) — Striking hotel workers who became a familiar sight on Chicago’s famed Michigan Avenue as they picketed — for 10 years — are ending one of the longest strikes in American history, their union said Thursday.…