A white man fatally shoots 3 Black people at a Florida store in a hate crime, then kills himself
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — A masked white man fatally shot three Black people inside a Jacksonville, Florida, Dollar General store in a predominately African-American neighborhood on Saturday, in an attack where he used a gun painted with a swastika, officials said. The shooter, who had also posted racist writings, then killed himself.
Jacksonville Sheriff T.K. Waters told a news conference that the attack that left two men and one woman dead was definitely “racially motivated."
“He hated Black people,” Waters said after reviewing the man's writings, which were sent to federal law enforcement officials and at least one media outlet shortly before the attack. He added that the gunman acted alone and “there is absolutely no evidence the shooter is part of any larger group.”
Waters said the shooter, who was in his 20s, used a Glock handgun and an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle with at least one of them painted with a swastika. He was wearing a bullet-resistant vest. He said the shooter had once been involved in a 2016 domestic violence incident and was once involuntarily committed to a mental hospital for examination. He did not provide further details on those incidents.
Officials didn’t immediately release the names of the victims or the shooter.
Firefighters douse Maui brush fire that prompted evacuations near site of deadly Lahaina blaze
LAHAINA, Hawaii (AP) — A brush fire burned 10 acres (4 hectares) on Saturday and prompted Maui authorities to evacuate residents from a neighborhood of Lahaina, just a few miles from the site recently ravaged by blazes, before firefighters brought it under control.
Firefighters doused flames from above using a helicopter and with hoses on the ground, said John Heggie, a spokesperson for Maui County's Joint Information Center.
Maui County said in an Instagram post that the fire no longer posed an active threat but firefighters were working in the area and evacuees should stay clear until it was safe to return.
The evacuation order covered a small number of homes in the hills above Kaanapali resort hotels. It wasn’t immediately clear how many people were affected by the evacuation order.
At least 115 people were killed and 2,000 structures destroyed when a wildfire tore through downtown Lahaina on Aug. 8. Minimal rains have pushed the area into drought.
Bare electrical wire and leaning poles on Maui were possible cause of deadly fires
In the first moments of the Maui fires, when high winds brought down power poles, slapping electrified wires to the dry grass below, there was a reason the flames erupted all at once in long, neat rows -- those wires were bare, uninsulated metal that could spark on contact.
Videos and images analyzed by The Associated Press confirmed those wires were among miles of line that Hawaiian Electric Co. left naked to the weather and often-thick foliage, despite a recent push by utilities in other wildfire- and hurricane-prone areas to cover up their lines or bury them.
Compounding the problem is that many of the utility’s 60,000, mostly wooden power poles, which its own documents described as built to “an obsolete 1960s standard,” were leaning and near the end of their projected lifespan. They were nowhere close to meeting a 2002 national standard that key components of Hawaii’s electrical grid be able to withstand 105 mile per hour winds. A 2019 filing said it had fallen behind in replacing the old wooden poles because of other priorities and warned of a “serious public hazard” if they “failed.”
Google street view images of poles taken before the fire show the bare wire.
It’s “very unlikely” a fully-insulated cable would have sparked and caused a fire in dry vegetation, said Michael Ahern, who retired this month as director of power systems at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts.
Thousands converge on National Mall to mark the March on Washington’s 60th anniversary
WASHINGTON (AP) — Thousands converged Saturday on the National Mall for the 60th anniversary of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s March on Washington, saying a country that remains riven by racial inequality has yet to fulfill his dream.
“We have made progress, over the last 60 years, since Dr. King led the March on Washington," said Alphonso David, president and CEO of the Global Black Economic Forum. “Have we reached the mountaintop? Not by a long shot."
The event was convened by the Kings’ Drum Major Institute and the Rev. Al Sharpton 's National Action Network. A host of Black civil rights leaders and a multiracial, interfaith coalition of allies rallied attendees on the same spot where as many as 250,000 gathered in 1963 for what is still considered one of the greatest and most consequential racial justice and equality demonstrations in U.S. history.
Inevitably, Saturday's event was shot through with contrasts to the initial, historic demonstration. Speakers and banners talked about the importance of LGBTQ and Asian American rights. Many who addressed the crowd were women after only one was given the microphone in 1963.
Pamela Mays McDonald of Philadelphia attended the initial march as a child. “I was 8 years old at the original March and only one woman was allowed to speak — she was from Arkansas where I’m from — now look at how many women are on the podium today,” she said.
A gang in Haiti opens fire on a crowd of parishioners trying to rid the community of criminals
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — A powerful gang opened fire Saturday on a large group of parishioners led by a pastor as they marched through a community armed with machetes to rid the area of gang members.
The attack was filmed in real time by journalists at the scene, and several people were killed and others injured, Marie Yolène Gilles, director of human rights group Fondasyon Je Klere, told The Associated Press.
She watched online as hundreds of people from a local church marched through Canaan, a makeshift town in the outskirts of the capital of Port-au-Prince founded by survivors who lost their homes in the devastating 2010 earthquake.
It wasn’t immediately clear how many people were killed and injured in the attack.
Canaan is controlled by a gang led by a man identified only as “Jeff,” who is believed to be allied with the “5 Seconds” gang.
At Fukushima Daiichi, decommissioning the nuclear plant is far more challenging than water release
FUTABA, Japan (AP) — For the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, managing the ever-growing volume of radioactive wastewater held in more than 1,000 tanks has been a safety risk and a burden since the meltdown in March 2011. Its release marks a milestone for the decommissioning, which is expected to take decades.
But it's just the beginning of the challenges ahead, such as the removal of the fatally radioactive melted fuel debris that remains in the three damaged reactors, a daunting task if ever accomplished.
Here's a look at what's going on with the plant's decommissioning:
A magnitude 9.0 quake on March 11, 2011, triggered a massive tsunami that destroyed the plant’s power supply and cooling systems, causing three reactors to melt and spew large amounts of radiation. Highly contaminated cooling water applied to the damaged reactors has leaked continuously into building basements and mixed with groundwater. The water is collected and treated. Then, some is recycled as cooling water for melted fuel, while the rest is held in tanks that cover much of the plant.
Fukushima Daiichi has struggled to handle the contaminated water since the 2011 disaster. The government and the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, say the tanks must be removed to make way for facilities needed to decommission the plant, such as storage space for melted fuel debris and other highly contaminated waste.
Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa wins re-election after troubled vote, officials say
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa was re-elected for a second and final five-year term late Saturday in results announced much earlier than expected following another troubled vote in the southern African country with a history of violent and disputed elections.
An opposition party spokesperson said within minutes of Mnangagwa being declared the winner that they would reject the results as “hastily assembled without proper verification.”
Mnangagwa's victory meant the ZANU-PF party retained the governmental leadership it has held for all 43 years of Zimbabwe's history since the nation was re-named following independence from white minority rule in 1980.
Zimbabwe has had just two leaders in that time, long-ruling autocrat Robert Mugabe and Mnangagwa.
The 80-year-old Mnangagwa, who has the nickname “the crocodile” from his days as a guerrilla fighter, won 52.6% of the votes in the midweek election, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission said in a late-night announcement in the capital, Harare. The 45-year-old main opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa, got 44%, the commission said.
Bob Barker, dapper ‘Price Is Right’ and ‘Truth or Consequences’ host and animal advocate, dies at 99
Bob Barker, the enduring, dapper game show host who became a household name over a half century of hosting “Truth or Consequences” and “The Price Is Right,” has died. He was 99.
Barker — also a longtime animal rights activist — died Saturday morning at his home in Los Angeles, publicist Roger Neal said.
“I am so proud of the trailblazing work Barker and I did together to expose the cruelty to animals in the entertainment industry and including working to improve the plight of abused and exploited animals in the United States and internationally,” said Nancy Burnet, his longtime friend and co-executor of his estate, in a statement.
Barker retired in June 2007, telling his studio audience: “I thank you, thank you, thank you for inviting me into your home for more than 50 years.”
Barker was working in radio in 1956 when producer Ralph Edwards invited him to audition as the new host of "Truth or Consequences," a game show in which audience members had to do wacky stunts — the "consequence" — if they failed to answer a question — the "truth," which was always the silly punchline to a riddle no one was ever meant to furnish. (Q: What did one eye say to another? A: Just between us, something smells.)
FIFA suspends Spain soccer federation president Luis Rubiales for 90 days after World Cup win kiss
GENEVA (AP) — FIFA suspended Spanish soccer federation president Luis Rubiales on Saturday while its disciplinary committee investigates his conduct at the Women’s World Cup final, which included kissing player Jenni Hermoso on the lips after Spain's victory.
The provisional suspension comes less than a week after Spain’s 1-0 victory over England in Sydney, Australia, and a day after Rubiales refused to resign, despite intense pressure from the Spanish government, women players, soccer clubs and officials. Rubiales' conduct, which also included grabbing his crotch, has overshadowed the enormous accomplishment of Spain's first Women's World Cup title.
Hermoso has said she did not consent to the kiss, and the team's players have said they will not play any more games as long as Rubiales is in charge. It was not immediately clear how FIFA's latest intervention might affect that.
FIFA said it removed Rubiales from soccer duties for 90 days “pending the disciplinary proceedings opened” against him Thursday.
The president of Spain’s women’s league, Beatriz Álvarez, told The Associated Press that she believed this was the end of Rubiales' soccer career. The league filed one of several official complaints against Rubiales that Spain's government has received.
Russia's Wagner mercenaries face uncertainty after the presumed death of their leader in plane crash
The Wagner Group's presence extends from the ancient battlegrounds of Syria to the deserts of sub-Saharan Africa, projecting the Kremlin's global influence with mercenaries accused of using brutal force and profiting from seized mineral riches.
But that was under Yevgeny Prigozhin, who in what may have been his final recruitment video, appeared in military fatigues and held an assault rifle from an unidentified dry and dusty plain as he boasted that Wagner was “making Russia even greater on all continents and Africa even more free.”
A private jet carrying Prigozhin and his top lieutenants crashed northwest of Moscow on Wednesday, two months after he led an armed rebellion that challenged the authority of Russian President Vladimir Putin. There is wide speculation that the mercenary leader, who is presumed dead, was targeted for assassination because of his uprising, although the Kremlin has denied involvement.
The crash has raised questions about the future of Prigozhin's private army, which fought alongside Russian troops in Ukraine before his brief uprising against military leaders in Moscow.
Russian authorities have cited the need to await DNA test results to confirm Prigozhin’s death, but Putin expressed condolences after the jet fell from the sky. The Russian leader also has ordered Wagner fighters to sign an oath of allegiance to the Russian state, according to a decree published on the Kremlin’s website late Friday and effective immediately.
The Associated Press