Russia Ukraine

Rising smoke can be seen from the beach at Saky after explosions were heard from the direction of a Russian military airbase near Novofedorivka, Crimea, Tuesday. The explosion of munitions caused a fire at a military air base in Russian-annexed Crimea Tuesday but no casualties or damage to stationed warplanes, Russia’s Defense Ministry said.

STATE

Man convicted of fatally shooting his 2 daughters

DALLAS (AP) — A suburban Dallas man who evaded arrest for more than 12 years after the fatal shootings of his two teenage daughters in 2008 was convicted Tuesday in the killings that prosecutors said were driven by his obsessive desire for control.

Yaser Said, 65, was found guilty of capital murder in the deaths of 18-year-old Amina Said and 17-year-old Sarah Said. Prosecutors did not pursue the death penalty, so with the conviction, the judge sentenced Yaser Said to life in prison without parole.

The teens’ mother, Patricia Owens, told her former husband in a victim impact statement given after the verdict and sentence that she was no longer scared of him.

“You can keep those evil eyes on me as long as you want. You will never break me down again,” Owens said. “Nor will you ever be able to hurt another person.”

Salon shooting suspect indicted for anti-Asian hate crime

DALLAS (AP) — A man accused of shooting three Asian American women at a hair salon was indicted Tuesday on multiple counts, including committing a hate crime.

The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office announced the indictment Tuesday of Jeremy Terrence Smith, 37, for the May 11 shooting at a salon in Dallas’ Koreatown. It alleges Smith entered the salon and fired 13 shots from a .22-caliber rifle, wounding three women and endangering four others.

NATION

Trump says he took the Fifth in NY civil investigation

NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump invoked his Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination as he testified under oath Wednesday in the New York attorney general’s long-running civil investigation into his business dealings, the former president said in a statement.

Trump arrived at Attorney General Letitia James’ Manhattan offices in a motorcade shortly before 9 a.m., before announcing more than an hour later that he “declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen under the United States Constitution.”

“I once asked, ‘If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?’ Now I know the answer to that question,” the statement said. “When your family, your company, and all the people in your orbit have become the targets of an unfounded politically motivated Witch Hunt supported by lawyers, prosecutors and the Fake News Media, you have no choice.”

Trump spent more than six hours in the building, departing again via motorcade before 3:30 p.m.

Biden signs ‘burn pits’ help for vets

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden, whose elder son Beau died of cancer years after deploying to Iraq, signed legislation on Wednesday expanding federal health care services for millions of veterans who served at military bases where toxic smoke billowed from huge “burn pits.”

“We owe you,” Biden said. “You’re the backbone. You’re the steel. You’re the sinew. You’re the very fiber that makes this country what it is.”

The law, which Biden described as long overdue, caps a years-long battle to ensure treatment for chronic illnesses that veterans have blamed on burn pits, which were used to dispose of chemicals, tires, plastics, medical equipment and human waste on military bases. Estimates of affected troops run to 3.5 million.

Confederate named base changes would cost $21M

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Renaming nine U.S. Army posts that honor Confederate officers would cost a total of $21 million if the installations rebrand everything from welcome marquees and street signs to water towers and hospital doors, according to an independent commission.

The Naming Commission released its final report on recommending the new Army base names to Congress on Monday. It included a 17-page list of assets that are tied to the Confederacy, from the decals on 300 recycling bins at Fort Bragg in North Carolina to the sign for a softball field at Fort Hood in Texas.

The report is the latest step in a broader effort by the military to confront racial injustice, most recently in the aftermath of the May 2020 police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

The renaming process was laid out in a law passed by Congress in late 2020. The secretary of defense is expected to implement the commission’s plan no later than Jan. 1, 2024.

Mom charged with helping daughter have abortion

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A Nebraska woman has been charged with helping her teenage daughter end her pregnancy at about 24 weeks after investigators obtained Facebook messages in which the two discussed using medication to induce an abortion and plans to burn the fetus afterward.

The prosecutor handling the case said it’s the first time he has charged anyone for illegally performing an abortion after 20 weeks, a restriction that was passed in 2010. Before the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, states weren’t allowed to enforce abortion bans until the point at which a fetus is considered viable outside the womb, at roughly 24 weeks.

Rep. Scott Perry says FBI agents seized his cellphone

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. Rep. Scott Perry said his cellphone was seized Tuesday morning by FBI agents carrying a search warrant.

The circumstances surrounding the seizure were not immediately known. Perry, though, has been a figure in the congressional investigation into President Donald Trump’s actions leading up to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol insurrection.

Former senior Justice Department officials have testified that Perry, a Pennsylvania Republican, had “an important role” in Trump’s effort to try to install Jeffrey Clark — a top Justice official who was pushing Trump’s baseless claims of election fraud — as the acting attorney general.

In a statement Tuesday, Perry said three agents visited him while he was traveling Tuesday with his family and “seized my cell phone.” He called the action “banana republic tactics.”

U.S. will stretch monkeypox vaccine with smaller doses

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials on Tuesday authorized a plan to stretch the nation’s limited supply of monkeypox vaccine by giving people just one-fifth the usual dose, citing research suggesting that the reduced amount is about as effective.

The so-called dose-sparing approach also calls for administering the Jynneos vaccine with an injection just under the skin rather than into deeper tissue — a practice that may rev up the immune system better. Recipients would still get two shots spaced four weeks apart.

The highly unusual step is a stark acknowledgment that the U.S. currently lacks the supplies needed to vaccinate everyone seeking protection from the rapidly spreading virus.

That includes 1.6 million to 1.7 million Americans considered by federal officials to be at highest risk from the disease, primarily men with HIV or men who have a higher risk of contracting it. Vaccinating that group would require more than 3.2 million shots.

WORLD

Ukraine: Russian warplanes destroyed in Crimea blasts

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine’s air force said Wednesday that nine Russian warplanes were destroyed in a deadly string of explosions at an air base in Crimea, amid speculation the blasts were the result of a Ukrainian attack that would represent a significant escalation in the war.

Russia denied any aircraft were damaged in Tuesday’s blasts — or that any attack took place.

Ukrainian officials stopped short of publicly claiming responsibility for the explosions, while mocking Russia’s explanation that a careless smoker might have caused ammunition at the Saki air base to catch fire and blow up. Analysts also said that explanation doesn’t make sense and that the Ukrainians could have used anti-ship missiles to strike the base.

If Ukrainian forces were, in fact, responsible for the blasts, it would be the first known major attack on a Russian military site on the Crimean Peninsula, which was seized from Ukraine by the Kremlin in 2014. Russian warplanes have used Saki to strike areas in Ukraine’s south.

Beluga whale lost in river euthanized during rescue

PARIS (AP) — A beluga whale that became a French celebrity after a wrong turn took it up the Seine River had to be euthanized Wednesday after experiencing health complications during an urgent rescue operation, authorities said.

The sparkling white marine mammal appeared deep inside France last week, having accidentally veered off the normal ocean migration route that takes belugas to and from Arctic waters.

Fearing the malnourished creature would not survive in the Seine much longer, a wildlife conservation group and veterinarians planned to move the lost whale to a saltwater port in Normandy, from where they hoped to return it to the open sea.

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