National & World

Correction: Viability-Babies story

In a story published May 11, 2022, about extremely premature babies and viability, The Associated Press erroneously reported the findings of a study that looked at how many babies born at 22 weeks received treatment. The study found that about 60% of the infants were actively treated in 2019, up from 26% in 2007; the figures were not the percentages of hospitals that treated them.

Live updates | NATO head "confident" of Sweden, Finland bid

Turkey’s leader opposes having Sweden and Finland join NATO, but the military alliance’s top official says he expects the issue to be resolved and the two Nordic nations to become members soon. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday he was ”confident that we will come to a quick decision to welcome both Sweden and Finland to join the NATO family.” Turkey’s approval of Finland and Sweden’s application to join the Western military alliance is crucial because NATO makes decisions by consensus. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a video released Thursday, “We have told our relevant friends we would say ‘no’ to Finland and Sweden’s entry."

Johnny Depp's jealousy, substance abuse recounted by friends

The trial for Johnny Depp’s libel suit against ex-wife Amber Heard has returned to the recurring themes of Depp’s jealousy and substance abuse. Bruce Witkin is a musician who was friends with Depp for nearly 40 years. In videotaped testimony played in court Thursday, he said the actor first displayed jealousy in romantic relationships decades ago. He said Depp also became jealous during his relationship with Heard. Witkin said both Heard and Depp showed signs of physical abuse. But he said he never saw the actors physically hurt each other. Depp is suing Heard for libel in Virginia over an op-ed she wrote that described herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse.”

New Twitter policy aims to pierce fog of war misinformation

Twitter is stepping up its fight against misinformation with a new policy cracking down on posts that spread potentially dangerous false stories. The change is part of a broader effort to promote accurate information during times of conflict or crisis. Under the new rules, which take effect Thursday, Twitter will no longer automatically recommend or amplify posts that mischaracterize conditions during a conflict or make misleading claims about war crimes or atrocities. Posts that violates the rules could also have warning labels applied, as well as links to more trustworthy content. Twitter says it will apply the rules first to Ukraine and then to future humanitarian crises.

In 2 states, 1 in 20 residents missed during US head count

Around 1 in 20 residents in Arkansas and Tennessee were missed during the 2020 census, and four other U.S. states had significant undercounts of their populations which could short-change them of federal funding in the current decade. That's according to figures from a survey the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday. In Florida, and Texas, undercounts appear to have cost them congressional seats too. In eight states, residents were overcounted. In Minnesota and Rhode Island, overcounts appear to have saved them from losing congressional seats. In the remaining 36 states, the overcounts and undercounts weren’t statistically significant.

Grand jury indicts man in Buffalo supermarket shooting

The white man accused of killing 10 Black people at a Buffalo supermarket appeared briefly in court Thursday after a grand jury indicted him on a first-degree murder charge. Assistant district attorney Gary Hackbush said the indictment of 18-year-old Payton Gendron was handed up Wednesday. He was silent throughout the proceeding and sent back to jail. Someone shouted “Payton you’re a coward!” as he was led out. Ten people were killed and three others wounded in the Saturday shooting at the Tops Friendly Market in a predominantly Black neighborhood of Buffalo. Authorities are continuing to investigate the possibility of hate crime and terrorism charges.

McDonald's era in Russia coming to a close, restaurants sold

McDonald’s is selling all of its restaurants in Russia 30 years after the burger chain became a powerful symbol of easing Cold War tensions between the United States and Soviet Union. It shuttered all Russian locations in March because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Chicago burger giant said its existing licensee Alexander Govor, who operates 25 restaurants in Siberia, has agreed to buy McDonald’s 850 Russian restaurants and operate them under a new name. McDonald’s Russian operations contributed 9% of the company’s annual sales, or around $2 billion. McDonald’s was among the first Western consumer brands to enter Russia in 1990.

Abortion-friendly states prep for more patients if Roe falls

Reproductive rights advocates are planning to open new abortion clinics or expand the capacity of existing ones in states without restrictive abortion laws. This comes as a leaked draft of a U.S. Supreme Court opinion says justices could overturn the landmark 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. Some Democratic-led states in the West and the Northeast are proposing public money for an expected influx of people traveling from other places for abortions. A clinic in Memphis, Tennessee, plans to open an abortion facility in August in the southern Illinois city of Carbondale. Illinois has easy abortion access but is surrounded by more restrictive states.

Indiana jury convicts man in slayings of woman, her 3 kids

A jury has convicted a man in the killings of a woman and her three children slain last year in their northeastern Indiana home. An Allen County jury found 22-year-old Cohen Hancz-Barron of Fort Wayne guilty Thursday of four counts of murder following a seven-day trial in the June 2021 deaths of his girlfriend and her three children. The Journal Gazette reports that attorneys were expected to begin the sentencing phase of the trial Thursday morning. Prosecutors are asking that the jury recommend life in prison without parole for Hancz-Barron. The bodies of 26-year-old Sarah Nicole Zent; her sons, 5-year-old Carter and 3-year-old Ashton; and 2-year-old daughter Aubree were found June 2 in a Fort Wayne home.

Lawmakers want Ohio State's 2010 football season restored

House lawmakers have approved a symbolic resolution calling for the restoration of the Ohio State University's football team's 2010 season that was vacated after a memorabilia-for-cash scandal. The resolution sponsored by Rep. Brian Stewart, an Ohio State graduate, calls on the NCAA to reinstate the team's 2010 record and wins. The season was vacated following revelations that players in 2009 and 2010 accepted cash and free or discounted tattoos from a Columbus tattoo parlor owner and also traded memorabilia like championship rings for cash. Stewart notes that the NCAA now allows players to be compensated for use of their name, image and likeness.

Home sales tumble again as mortgage rates surge

Sales of previously occupied U.S. homes slowed in April for the third month in a row as mortgage rates surged, driving up borrowing costs for would-be homebuyers as home prices soared to new highs. The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that existing home sales fell 2.4% last month from March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.61 million. That was slightly higher than what economists were expecting, according to FactSet. Sales fell 5.9% from April last year. The slowdown came as the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate home loan climbed to above 5% for the first time in more than a decade by the end of April.

Report: Gunman sent diary to newspaper before church attack

The man accused of opening fire on a Southern California church congregation because of his political hatred for Taiwan sent a newspaper a seven-volume diary before the attack. The Chinese-language World Journal bureau in the Los Angeles area said it received the stacks of photocopied pages and a flash drive on Monday — a day after authorities say David Chou opened fire on people at a luncheon at a Taiwanese church in Laguna Woods. The paper said the title referred to a “destroying" angel opposed to Taiwan's independence from China. The newspaper's attorney tells The Orange County Register he will turn them over over to police when he receives a subpoena. Chou is charged with murder and attempted murder.

Ivey, challengers race to right in Alabama GOP primary

Alabama’s Republican primary has become a race to the right, with candidates staking out extreme positions on abortion, immigration and LGBTQ issues. The race was supposed to be a cake walk for Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey _ who remains favored to win a second term — but right flank challengers are trying to make it a referendum on conservative credentials and push the Alabama governor into a runoff.

'Twitter philanthropy' reveals chasms in social safety net

Practically every minute of every hour, someone sends a tweet to Bill Pulte, a 33-year-old private-equity investor and heir to the mammoth PulteGroup homebuilding company. And, nearly every day, Pulte responds. He sent $500 for a man who sent a video showing his missing teeth. He gave $125 for a woman to pay for gas so she could make the long drive to her brother’s funeral. It’s all part of what Pulte calls “Twitter philanthropy” – a concept of direct giving in which Pulte and others offer immediate financial support to a tiny percentage of people who reach out over social media. Philanthropy experts say Pulte’s generosity is laudable, but question whether his approach will produce any long-term results.