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National News

Priest draws squirt gun in fight against coronavirus

DETROIT (AP) — A Roman Catholic priest in the Detroit area has taken aim at his parishioners in a bid to maintain social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic, using a squirt gun to shoot holy water. Photos posted on social media by the St. Ambrose Church show the Rev. Tim Pelc shooting ...

California homeless quarantine in hotels, more rooms needed

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Anxiety mounted every time someone at the homeless shelter sneezed or residents got too close. For Matthew Padilla, a 34-year-old with a pacemaker and asthma, catching the novel coronavirus would likely mean death. So he jumped at the chance to move into a hotel room for ...

Los Angeles offers virus tests to all, still has unused kits

LOS ANGELES (AP) — With ample coronavirus tests and not enough sick people seeking them, the mayor of Los Angeles recently did something on a scale no other major U.S. city had done — allow anyone with or without symptoms to be tested as often as they want. A website to book a test was ...

Oil, tourism, seafood — all hit in Louisiana virus fight

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Every Labor Day weekend, St. Mary Parish celebrates two industries at a tourist event with a seemingly improbable title: the Louisiana Shrimp and Petroleum Festival. With a shrimp in a hard hat clinging to an oil derrick as its logo, the festival may the best example of ...

U.S. military’s mystery space plane rockets back toward orbit

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The U.S. military's mystery space plane rocketed into orbit again Sunday, this time with an extra load of science experiments. It's the sixth flight of an X-37B, a solar-powered plane that's flown by remote control without a crew. Officials aren't saying how long ...

How long before we know if reopenings cause virus spikes?

U.S. states and countries worldwide are cautiously relaxing restrictions while watching for potential spikes in coronavirus infections. Getting the timing right is complicated. Disease trackers note the impossibility of seeing clearly what's happening without widespread testing. A look at when ...

System off Florida could become season’s first named storm

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A trough of low pressure moving through the Florida Straits could organize over the northwestern Bahamas later Friday or Saturday and become the first named storm of the 2020 hurricane season, the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said. Tropical storm force ...

10 cases, 2 weeks, 1 Supreme Court holding phone arguments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way the Supreme Court is doing business. For the foreseeable future the court will be announcing its opinions not in the courtroom but by posting decisions online. And the justices are holding their private conferences by phone. Over ...

Lawyer: Security video in Arbery case may show water breaks

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A young black man filmed by a security camera walking through a home under construction in December and in February may have stopped at the site for a drink of water, according to an attorney for the homeowner thrust into the investigation of the fatal shooting of Ahmaud ...

Nebraska court orders disclosure of execution drug records

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska prison officials cannot withhold public records that reveal where they purchased their supply of lethal injection drugs, the state's highest court said Friday in a ruling that could threaten Nebraska's ability to carry out executions for the dozen men on its death ...

Beginning to bloom: New York creaking back to economic life

SCHOHARIE, N.Y. (AP) — Idled contractors girded for long-awaited jobs and shoppers browsed spring flowers -- though masks made stopping to smell the roses a problem -- as New York state began slowly restarting its economy Friday in areas spared the brunt of the coronavirus pandemic. Smaller ...

Coronavirus masks a boon for crooks who hide their faces

CHICAGO (AP) — The way the FBI tells it, William Rosario Lopez put on a surgical mask and walked into the Connecticut convenience store looking to the world like a typical pandemic-era shopper as he picked up plastic wrap, fruit snacks and a few other items. Then, when the only other customer ...

Group buys Alabama abortion clinic to keep it from closing

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Conservative lawmakers in Alabama last year tried to enact the nation's most stringent abortion ban, but the attempt to outlaw the procedure may have had one ironic twist. An Alabama-based abortion rights group used a flood of donations that poured in from across the ...

Local health agencies struggle to ramp up virus tracking

ATLANTA (AP) — As state after state begins to reopen, local health departments charged with tracking down everyone who has been in close contact with those who test positive for the new coronavirus are still scrambling to hire the number of people they need to do the job. They are often ...

Public officials cite virus while limiting access to records

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Many state and local governments across the country have suspended public records requirements amid the coronavirus pandemic, denying or delaying access to information that could shed light on key government decisions. Public officials have said employees either ...

Supreme Court sides with Lucky brand in trademark dispute

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is siding with fashion brand Lucky in a dispute with a Miami-based apparel manufacturer that owns the "Get Lucky" trademark. The high court ruled unanimously in favor of Lucky on Thursday and against Marcel Fashion Group. The case before the justices ...

Poll: Virus, econ crisis drive fears of having enough to eat

OAK PARK, Ill. (AP) — Kate Maehr has never seen anything like it: lines stretching for blocks as people, many with children, inch forward to get boxes of food they hope will last until the next giveaway, until the next paycheck or until they can get government food assistance. "It's just ...

Defense attorneys: Don’t rush to judgment in Arbery shooting

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — Attorneys for two white men accused of pursuing and killing a black man in Georgia said Thursday their clients have been vilified and cautioned against a rush to judgment in a case that has drawn national attention. Gregory and Travis McMichael, a father and son, are ...

System off Florida could become season’s first named storm

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A trough of low pressure moving through the Florida Straits could organize over the northwestern Bahamas later Friday or Saturday and become the first named storm of the 2020 hurricane season, the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said. Tropical storm force ...

NIH director: Large-scale vaccine testing expected by July

Having a COVID-19 vaccine by January is "a stretch goal," but the head of the National Institutes of Health is gearing up for a master experiment to rapidly tell if any really work. At least four or five possible vaccines "look pretty promising" and one or two will be ready to begin ...