Saturday, September 24
NEW: 2 firefighters killed in Wilmington, Del., rowhouse fire
WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Two firefighters have died and four have been injured in Delaware while battling a pre-dawn fire in a rowhouse.
The Wilmington Fire Department said Lt. Christopher Leach, 41, and Senior Firefighter Jerry Fickes, 51, died in the fire, which began around 3:15 a.m. Saturday.
The floor of the home collapsed as firefighters went inside, and four firefighters fell.
Two firefighters were in critical condition at a medical center. Two others were treated at a hospital and one of them has been released.
Four children and one adult were taken to St. Francis Hospital for smoke inhalation.
Residents fearful with gunman at large
BURLINGTON, Wash. (AP) — Worried residents fear for their safety as authorities search for a gunman who killed five people at a mall in Washington state.
Maria Elena Vasquez of Burlington attended a community gathering Saturday following the Friday evening slayings at the city's Cascade Mall. She said "it's nerve-wracking" and she's nervous about taking her 7-year-old daughter to her soccer game.
Police said early Saturday they didn't know the gunman's identity and urged the community for help in identifying him.
Authorities say the man entered the shopping center without a weapon, but 10 minutes later, went inside Macy's with a rifle and opened fire in the makeup department of a Macy's store.
Mount Vernon Police Lt. Chris Cammock said Saturday that authorities recovered the weapon from the scene. He described it as a "hunting type" rifle.
Cammock says officers are reconstructing the entire scene at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, scanning for evidence.
Burlington is a city of about 8,000 people about 60 miles north of Seattle.
CHARLOTTE POLICE-FATAL SHOOTING
UPDATE: Charlotte crowd demands shooting video release
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Hundreds of demonstrators in Charlotte have taken their protest to the police department.
Many of the hundreds who gathered Saturday afternoon chanted "Keith Scott," the name of the black man shot to death earlier this week by police.
Protesters had gathered earlier in the day, marching through the streets of a city on edge after Scott's shooting death. The demonstrations reached a violent crescendo on Wednesday before the National Guard was called in Thursday to maintain order.
The next two nights of protests were free of property damage and violence, with organizers stressing a message of peace at the end of the week.
Many demonstrators have demanded police release body camera and dashcam video of Scott's shooting. On Saturday, the crowd chanted, "No tapes, no peace."
Hundreds at funeral for Ohio boy, 13, fatally shot by police
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Hundreds of mourners have gathered for the funeral of a 13-year-old Ohio boy fatally shot by a Columbus police officer investigating a report of an armed robbery.
A hearse carried Tyre (ty-REE') King's body to a cemetery where he was laid to rest on Saturday following the funeral and visitation services at a Columbus church.
Police say Officer Bryan Mason shot Tyre on Sept. 14 after the boy ran from investigators and pulled out a BB gun that looked like a real firearm.
Evidence in the shooting investigation will be presented to a grand jury to determine if the officer's actions were justified or charges are warranted.
Tyre's family has called for an independent investigation.
The family's attorneys say the eighth-grader played sports and was in a young scholars program.
SMITHSONIAN AFRICAN AMERICAN MUSEUM
Obamas officially open black history museum
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says he hopes visitors to the newest Smithsonian museum will "walk away that much more in love" with their country because of the stories it tells.
Obama says the first national museum dedicated to African-American history and culture helps tell a "richer and fuller" story of who we are as Americans.
The nation's first black president opened the new museum today, joined by first lady Michelle Obama and Ruth Bonner, a 99-year-old direct descendent of a slave, and her family.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture is the 19th and the newest of the Smithsonians.
The push for the museum began in 1915 with African-American Civil War veterans looking for a way to commemorate America's black experience. Former President George W. Bush signed the law authorizing the construction in 2003.
Georgia Congressman John Lewis co-sponsored legislation authorizing the museum. The civil rights icon said the bronze-colored museum "is more than a building, it is a dream come true."
Louisiana accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco dies
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Louisiana musician credited with taking zydeco mainstream has died.
Stanley "Buckwheat" Dural Jr. helped introduce the music of southwestern Louisiana to the world through his band, Buckwheat Zydeco. The band's 1987 album "On a Night Like This" was nominated for a Grammy.
Dural went on to jam with musical greats like Eric Clapton, play at former President Bill Clinton's inauguration and perform at the 1996 Olympics closing ceremony in Atlanta. And he jammed with Jimmy Fallon on the final episode of "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon." Fallon played the guitar backed up by the Roots while Buckwheat Zydeco rocked the accordion.
His longtime manager Ted Fox told The Associated Press that Dural died early Saturday morning at age 68. He had suffered from lung cancer.
Estimate of Cedar River crest lowered
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Officials have lowered their estimate of where the swollen Cedar River will crest in Cedar Rapids, but they are still asking people to stay out of the Iowa city's downtown on Sunday night.
City Manager Jeff Pomeranz said Saturday at a news conference that the river is expected to crest at 24.5 feet on Tuesday, which is nearly a foot below the earlier expected crest of 25.3 feet.
Downtown Cedar Rapids is still expected to see flooding that will affect an estimated 1,500 properties.
Fire Chief Mark English asked those living in an area outlined on a flood map posted on the city's website to evacuate their homes by 8 p.m. Sunday. A curfew will be in place from then until 7 a.m. Monday.
Police chief Wayne Jerman says 73 checkpoints will be set up to ensure that residents and their properties remain safe.
GAY POLICE OFFICER-DISCRIMINATION LAWSUIT
NEW: New Jersey shore town won't settle yet with gay ex-cop
(Information in the following story is from: The Press of Atlantic City (N.J.), http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com)
CAPE MAY, N.J. (AP) — Officials in a New Jersey shore town won't sign off yet on a proposed $369,000 settlement with a gay former police officer who filed a discrimination lawsuit.
The Press of Atlantic City (http://bit.ly/2csRd3W ) reports Cape May City Manager Bruce MacLeod issued a statement saying city officials would review the case. But they haven't decided if the settlement is in the taxpayers' "best interest."
The announcement came after the City Council tabled a vote on whether to approve the payment to Steven Pascal.
Pascal claimed in his 2013 suit that the police department created a hostile, anti-gay work environment and unjustly fired him.
Officials have said the decision was taking longer than expected because the city's insurer wouldn't pick up the full payment. The city would have to pay $50,000 under the proposed settlement.
NEW: Tens of thousands march against same-sex marriage in Mexico
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Tens of thousands of people are marching in Mexico City in opposition to Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto's push to legalize same-sex marriage.
A much smaller demonstration by supporters of same-sex marriage also took place. The two sides were kept apart Saturday by hundreds of police and barriers erected around the city's iconic Angel of Independence monument.
Representatives of the National Front for the Family that organized the opposition march say caravans of buses arrived from several states around the country.
Demonstrators dressed all in white carrying white balloons filled a wide boulevard for many blocks.
In May, Pena Nieto proposed legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide. It is legal only in some places including Mexico City and the northern state of Coahuila.
The Roman Catholic church opposes the president's proposal.
INTERNATIONAL HACKING SCHEME
NEW: Romanian gets prison term for orchestrating hacking scheme
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A Romanian citizen who orchestrated an international hacking scheme has been sentenced to three years in prison.
Federal prosecutors in New Jersey say 31-year-old Mircea-Illie Ispasoiu (EE-spa-SHOW-you) must also pay $907,204 in restitution. He had pleaded guilty to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft charges.
Prosecutors say the scheme targeted retailers, security companies, medical offices and people in the United States. They say Ispasoiu obtained user names and passwords, along with credit card data, from unsuspecting victims.
Authorities say Ispasoiu was a computer systems administrator at a large financial institution in Romania from August 2011 through February 2014.
The scheme involved hacking networks to steal personal identifiers and credit and debit card data. He also took personal identifying information, including fingerprints, from a company that ran background checks on job applicants.
HOMECOMING PARADE-CAR CRASH
NEW: Police: Teen driver crashes into parade-goers; 8 injured
(Information in the following story is from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com)
HAZELWOOD, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say a teenage driver in suburban St. Louis struck another vehicle and then spun into people who were waiting for a homecoming parade to begin, injuring several of them.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports (http://j.mp/2cR0SV9 ) that Hazelwood police say none the eight people who were hurt in Saturday's crash suffered life-threatening injuries. An unknown number were taken to hospitals. Police did not say if those in the vehicles were among the injured.
Police arrested the 17-year-old driver of the Ford Mustang that struck the parade-goers on charges of second-degree assault and careless and imprudent driving. They say the Mustang struck another vehicle near an intersection before spinning out of control and hitting the pedestrians, who were waiting for the start of the Hazelwood West High School homecoming parade.