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Los Angeles Times

Jury awards Texas family nearly $3 million in fracking case
A family says fracking and other drilling by Aruba Petroleum near their ranch created severe health problems. The civil jury verdict may be the first of its kind in a fracking case.In a landmark legal victory that centered on fracking, a middle-class north Texas ranching family won nearly $3 million from a big natural gas company whose drilling, they contend, caused years of sickness, killed pets and livestock, and forced them out of their home for months.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 05:34:00 GMT)

FDA to begin regulating e-cigarettes
The Food and Drug Administration will propose its first regulations for electronic cigarettes, including requiring health warnings and banning sales to minors. WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration plans to begin regulating electronic cigarettes for the first time, banning sales to minors and requiring manufacturers to put health warnings on the nicotine-delivering devices that have become a multibillion-dollar industry, according to officials who described the agency's proposal.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 04:05:00 GMT)

Officer in Albuquerque killing figured in 2011 shooting
Officer Jeremy Dear, under investigation for killing Mary Hawkes, 19, this week, gave conflicting statements when a fellow officer shot and killed a man three years ago.The latest Albuquerque police officer to fatally shoot a suspect was caught in a lie three years ago during the case of another officer implicated in a deadly shooting, according to an attorney and sworn testimony.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 02:18:00 GMT)

U.S. Senate race in Hawaii pits opposing wings of Democratic Party
Sen. Brian Schatz represents the party's more ideological faction, while Rep. Colleen Hanabusa follows the pragmatic path of late Sen. Daniel Inouye, whose former seat is at stake.HONOLULU — In primaries across the country — in Idaho, Kentucky, Mississippi and other states — Republicans are locked in a heart-and-soul battle between purists and pragmatists clashing over what it means to represent the party, its philosophy and core values.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 02:14:00 GMT)

Justice Department invites thousands of inmates to seek clemency
The Justice Department announces a clemency program aimed at correcting injustices and easing prison crowding. Hundreds may win early release.WASHINGTON — The Justice Department on Wednesday unveiled the most ambitious federal clemency program in 40 years, inviting thousands of jailed drug offenders and other convicts to seek early release as part of a new program intended to correct sentencing injustices and relieve prison overcrowding.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 02:05:00 GMT)

Mixed Supreme Court ruling on damages for child porn victims
An abuse victim may seek damages from every person who downloaded illegal images, but a single defendant may not be forced to pay the entire amount, the Supreme Court rules. WASHINGTON — Victims of child pornography whose images of sexual abuse have circulated on the Internet may demand compensation from every person caught downloading and possessing the illegal images, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.
(Thu, 24 Apr 2014 01:57:00 GMT)

Albuquerque police again draw criticism after fatal shooting
The killing of a 19-year-old woman in an auto theft case sparks a protest against the Albuquerque Police Department. The death comes days after a scathing federal report.Less than two weeks after federal officials rebuked the Albuquerque Police Department for a rash of unjustified officer-involved shootings, an officer fatally shot a 19-year-old woman suspected of stealing a vehicle before pointing a gun at police, authorities said.
(Wed, 23 Apr 2014 03:57:00 GMT)

Obama tours Washington mudslide devastation, praises rescuers
Obama assures those searching for mudslide victims in Washington state that the nation is inspired by their dedication and resilience. OSO, Wash. — Standing beneath a banner proclaiming "Oso Strong" one month after the deadly landslide, President Obama told the residents of the hard-hit Stillaguamish Valley that the nation is grieving with them as they struggle to rebuild homes, businesses and families.
(Wed, 23 Apr 2014 03:30:00 GMT)

Supreme Court upholds Michigan ban on affirmative action
The Supreme Court's decision regarding state college and university admissions policies extends to similar prohibitions in seven other states, including California. WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court dealt another blow to affirmative action Tuesday, upholding the decision of Michigan voters — and by implication similar bans in California and six other states — to forbid the use of race as a factor in deciding who is admitted to state universities.
(Wed, 23 Apr 2014 02:41:00 GMT)

Plight of child abuse suspect Shanesha Taylor tugs at public's heart
After the single mom was charged with leaving her kids in a hot car during an Arizona job interview, a stranger raised more than $100,000 to support her.PHOENIX — Depending on the point of view, Shanesha Taylor is either a negligent mom who deserves being charged with child abuse or an overwhelmed single mother who made a mistake while trying to provide for her children.
(Tue, 22 Apr 2014 04:35:00 GMT)

An emotional Boston Marathon ends with an American victory
Meb Keflezighi is the first American man to win since 1983. With security tight, runners and watchers speak of patriotism and healing one year after the bombings.BOSTON — The cheers were louder, the runners more determined, the tears of joy and relief at the Boston Marathon finish line Monday more heartfelt than ever.
(Tue, 22 Apr 2014 04:11:00 GMT)

Oddball bills stand out in Congress
A national park on the moon? Yes, there is an argument for an Apollo Lunar Landing Sites park, one of several unconventional bills awaiting action. Thousands of bills are introduced in a congressional session, but only a fraction become law. Even without that success, they call attention to their causes — or their sponsors. Here are a few of the eclectic measures awaiting action in Congress.
(Tue, 22 Apr 2014 02:10:00 GMT)

Bids to shorten prison terms get bipartisan support (and opposition)
As the Senate prepares to take up changes to federal sentencing and parole guidelines, some Republicans and Democrats break from their parties' traditional stances.WASHINGTON — For decades the Republican Party prided itself for being tough on crime, often putting Democrats on the defensive by pushing for longer, mandatory sentences for convicts.
(Mon, 21 Apr 2014 07:00:00 GMT)

A blow to corn-based biofuels
Biofuels made with corn residue release more greenhouse gases in the short term than conventional gasoline, a federally funded study says.WASHINGTON — Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration's conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.
(Mon, 21 Apr 2014 04:57:00 GMT)

Drought -- and neighbors -- press Las Vegas to conserve water
Lake Mead, the reservoir that supplies 90% of Las Vegas' water, is ebbing as though a plug had been pulled from a bathtub drain.LAS VEGAS — Deep beneath Lake Mead, a 23-foot-tall tunnel-boring machine grinds through stubborn bedrock in a billion-dollar effort to make sure water continues flowing to this thirsty resort city.
(Mon, 21 Apr 2014 04:48:00 GMT)

Acceptance rates at elite U.S. colleges decline
Stanford's acceptance rate was just 5% this year as other prestigious colleges and universities see rise in number of applicants. Throughout the arduous college application process, Brown University was on the top of Madeline Anderson's wish list. So when the Long Beach high school senior received a rejection from the Ivy League campus, she was disappointed but also knew she had tons of company.
(Mon, 21 Apr 2014 00:05:00 GMT)

Superhero window washers lift spirits of young hospital patients
Waving and high-fiving through the glass, Captain America, Batman and Spider-Man take children's attention off their medical troubles.The nurses on the 20th floor were the first to see them. "Oh my goodness," declared Colleen Forrester, 29, a nurse dressed in green scrubs, who pointed to the windows. Other nurses came to look and laughed. Were the children strong enough to come see?
(Sun, 20 Apr 2014 04:38:00 GMT)

Spotlighting a law that stripped U.S.-born women of citizenship
The Expatriation Act of 1907 required a woman who married a foreigner to 'take the nationality of her husband.' Daniel Swalm's grandmother was one such woman, and he's on a quest for justice.WASHINGTON — Daniel Swalm was researching his family when he came across a disturbing episode in immigration history. That discovery would lead to a move in the U.S. Senate to apologize for action the nation took more than a century ago.
(Sun, 20 Apr 2014 04:30:00 GMT)

Conservative heavyweights have solar industry in their sights
The Koch brothers and large utilities have allied to reverse state policies that favor renewable energy. Environmentalists are pushing back, but the fight is spreading and intensifying.WASHINGTON — The political attack ad that ran recently in Arizona had some familiar hallmarks of the genre, including a greedy villain who hogged sweets for himself and made children cry.
(Sun, 20 Apr 2014 04:00:00 GMT)

Rail workers' health issues are a growing safety concern
As the population of railway workers ages, critics concerned about public safety call for more stringent rules on health and medications.Visibility was 10 miles and the morning sun had pushed the temperature close to 90 as Danny Joe Hall guided his mile-long Union Pacific freight train east through the grasslands of the Oklahoma Panhandle.
(Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:25:00 GMT)

Looking back, and forward, to the Boston Marathon
A reporter recalls running in last year's race, and how memories of the tragedy there drove him to enter Monday's 2014 Boston Marathon. WASHINGTON — On Monday, if all goes according to plan, I'll be lining up at the start of the Boston Marathon. Let's just say this up front: I probably shouldn't be.
(Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:03:00 GMT)

Boston waits to see whether security hampers marathon festivity
Officials have worked to keep the Boston Marathon's traditional carefree spirit intact while making the route secure. BOSTON — There's a tense excitement running through this city as it prepares for the 118th Boston Marathon, a uniquely Bostonian event, held on Patriots' Day, the third Monday of April, which celebrates the first battles of the Revolutionary War.
(Sat, 19 Apr 2014 02:22:00 GMT)

Obama administration delays Keystone XL pipeline decision
Deliberations on the $5.3-billion project are almost certainly now postponed until after the November midterm election. A Nebraska state court decision invalidated part of the pipeline route. WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday delayed a decision on the construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, citing a Nebraska state court decision that invalidated part of the project's route.
(Sat, 19 Apr 2014 02:17:00 GMT)

California students feel UC admission squeeze
Most campuses take a lesser number of state students even as more get in from elsewhere.California high school seniors faced a tougher time winning a freshman spot at most of the UC campuses for the fall, with their chances at UCLA and UC Berkeley now fewer than one in five, according to a report released Friday.
(Sat, 19 Apr 2014 01:43:00 GMT)

Suspect held in Kansas City freeway shootings
The arrest is the biggest development in the case since a series of shootings began last month. None of the attacks has been fatal, but they have puzzled authorities and set motorists on edge. KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Since the bullets began to fly on freeways here, Taylor Stevens has stuck to the back roads. Rikki Rohret keeps her eyes on the overpasses. Behind the wheel, Joe Miller tries not to think about being an anonymous gunman's next victim.
(Fri, 18 Apr 2014 04:02:00 GMT)

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