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  • 3 teams remain perfect in Week 1

    AZ Center for Cancer Care, Vital Care and Coldwell Banker each remained undefeated through the first week of play in the Sun Cities National League.The three teams improved to 2-0 during Thursday’s games at Liberty Field in Sun City West.Vital Care 7Town Cryers 3Tom Haroldson pitched a gem for Vital Care.Larry Kuberka had four hits while Gary Zeman and Arlan Seefeldt each had three hits in the win.

  • Three detained in Glendale shooting

    GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Police say they have detained three people in connection with a shooting in the west Valley Thursday afternoon.The incident happened around 4 p.m. near 45th Avenue and Glendale Road.Glendale Police Sgt. Jay O'Neil said two teens were walking in an alley when two adult males walking in the opposite direction pulled out their guns and opened fire on the teens.O'Neil said one of the teens was hit and was able to make his way to a nearby McDonalds where he collapsed.Police said they have not interviewed the three people yet, so it is too early to call them suspects.O'Neil said police have concluded their search of the area where the shooting occurred.

  • Del Webb hospital hosts Valley fever presentation

    The University of Arizona Valley Fever Center for Excellence will host a free event in Sun City West next month.Open to the public and health professionals, the program coincides with the 12th annual Valley Fever Awareness Week, which runs from Nov. 8-16.Valley Fever 101 will take place 9-11 a.m. Tuesday at Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center, 14502 W. Meeker Blvd., Sun City West, and will feature presentations by:• Craig Rundbaken, DO, pulmonologist, Respiratory Valley Fever Clinic, Sun City West.• Rebecca Sunenshine, MD, commander, U.S. Public Health Service; career epidemiology field officer, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; medical director and administrator, Disease Control Division, Maricopa County Department of Public Health.• John Galgiani, MD, director, UA Valley Fever Center for Excellence, and UA professor of medicine.

  • Canyon Ridge teacher is STEM Superhero finalist

    Stefanie Lump, a teacher at Canyon Ridge Elementary School, was announced as a finalist for a 2014 STEM Superhero Award by the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee.The award highlights excellence and innovation in science, technology, engineering and math. Lump was nominated from a pool of 200.Forty-nine finalists for the STEM Superhero Awards will be recognized at an awards ceremony on Nov. 12 at the Arizona Science Center, where two winners in each category will be announced.Award recipients will receive red carpet treatment and prizes such as commemorative merchandise and grant funding.

  • Central League makes senior softball debut

    The Sun Cities Central League made its debut Thursday with a six-game slate at Sun Bowl Field in Sun City.The Sun Cities Senior Softball League now features 32 teams — the 10-team American League, the 10-team National League and the 12-team Central League.Players are placed in each league based on talent evaluations prior to the start of the season.Canyon State 14Ryan’s TD Sports 9Ernie Miller’s three-run double in the seventh inning broke an 8-8 tie and keyed Canyon State’s opening-day win.

  • Glendale, Peoria each report 16 residential burglaries

    The following is a partial list of burglaries in Glendale Sept. 29-Oct. 16. There were 26 burglaries reported: eight vehicle, two business and 16 residential.Residential:• 22900 block of North 71st Drive, Sept. 29• 22700 block of North 74th Lane, Sept. 30• 16400 block of North 62nd Avenue, Sept. 30• 5800 block of West Libby Street, Sept. 30

  • Two officers from same police department killed in car crashes this week

    CHANDLER, Ariz. (AP) — A police officer was fatally injured Friday when he was hit by a suspected drunken driver, becoming the second officer from the Chandler Police Department to be killed in motorcycle crashes this week. Officer David Payne, 37, was stopped at a red light about 1 a.m. when a vehicle struck his motorcycle from behind, police said. The impact threw Payne's motorcycle through the intersection. The other driver drove away, but officers stopped him a short time later and took him into custody, police said. The driver had an 11-month-old baby with him, police said. Payne's death followed the death of another Chandler officer Tuesday. Officer Bryant Holmes, 34, was riding his motorcycle to work when he was struck by an SUV that ran a red light, authorities said. The 20-year-old driver stopped. "It's been a very difficult week for the department," Chandler Police Chief Sean Duggan said. "We have lost two exceptional and talented officers in a matter of three days." Police said the suspect in Friday's crash that killed Payne was believed to be impaired by alcohol and driving on a suspended license. "This is not an accident," said Sgt. Joe Favazzo, a police spokesman. "This is a crash ... It was 100 percent avoidable." Brian Yazzie, 31, of Tempe, was arrested and jailed on suspicion of manslaughter, endangerment and leaving the scene of an accident, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office said. A Chandler police spokesman, Detective Seth Tyler, said he didn't know whether Yazzie has an attorney yet. Payne was a seven-year veteran of the Chandler department and a member of its drunken-driving enforcement unit. "His passion was to remove impaired drivers from the roadways," Duggan said. Payne was also a member of the Arizona Army National Guard, and he served in Iraq in 2007-2008.

  • Mexico police questioned in killing of 3 Americans

    MATAMOROS, Mexico (AP) — Authorities Friday were investigating a possible police connection to the killing of three U.S. citizens visiting their father in Mexico who were found shot to death along with a Mexican friend more than two weeks after going missing. Parents of the three siblings, whose bodies were identified Thursday, have said witnesses reported they were seized by men dressed in police gear calling themselves "Hercules," a tactical security unit in the violent border city of Matamoros wracked by cartel infighting. Nine of the unit's 40 officers are being questioned, Tamaulipas state Attorney General Ismael Quintanilla Acosta said. It would be the third recent case of alleged abuse and killings by Mexican security forces. The country is already convulsed by the case of 43 students from a teachers college in the southern state of Guerrero, their disappearance blamed on a mayor and police working with a drug cartel. Fifty-six people are under arrest, including dozens of police officers. In a separate case in June, soldiers killed 22 suspected gang members in Mexico state, then altered the scene and intimidated witnesses to hide the fact that most of the dead were executed after they surrendered, a National Commission on Human Rights report said last week. Three soldiers face murder charges. "We will apply the full force of the law and zero tolerance," Tamaulipas Gov. Egidio Torre Cantu said of the latest case, lamenting the death of the three Americans and a Mexican citizen, even though their identities had yet to be confirmed by DNA. Presidential spokesman Eduardo Sanchez declined to comment when asked about the newest case. The U.S. Embassy said it was aware of the reports but had no information to share "due to privacy considerations." The father of the three Americans, Pedro Alvarado, identified his children from photographs of the bodies showing tattoos, Quintanilla told Radio Formula. Clothing found with the bodies also matched that of Erica Alvarado Rivera, 26, and her brothers, Alex, 22, and Jose Angel, 21, who disappeared Oct. 13 along with Jose Guadalupe Castaneda Benitez, Erica Alvarado's 32-year-old boyfriend. Each was shot in the head and the bodies were burned, most likely from lying in the hot sun for so long, Quintanilla said. Tamaulipas authorities said it could take 24 to 48 hours for DNA tests to further confirm that the bodies were those of the Alvarado siblings, who were last seen in El Control, a small town near the Texas border west of Matamoros, about to return home to Progreso, Texas. "They were good kids," said an aunt, Nohemi Gonzalez. "I don't know why they did that to them." The three siblings shared their mother's modest brick home on a quiet street in Progreso less than three miles from the border. Erica, who has four children between the ages of 3 and 9, had been scheduled to begin studying next month to become a nursing assistant. Brothers Jose Angel and Alex had been set to make their annual pilgrimage to Missouri as migrant farm workers more than a week ago, Gonzalez said. When they weren't on the road, they divided their time between their mother's house in Texas and their father's in Mexico. On Sunday, Oct. 12, Erica drove her black Jeep Cherokee across the border to El Control. She dropped it at her father's house and went to visit with her boyfriend. Her mother, Raquel Alvarado, had told her to be back in Progreso by early Monday morning, because Raquel had to work and Erica's kids had to get to school. Raquel put the kids to bed Sunday night and awoke at 4 a.m. to see Erica was not home. She began calling her daughter's cellphone and continued through the morning. "I'm always worried about her when she goes over there," the mother said. Around 1 p.m., she reached her former husband. He told her Erica had called her brothers and asked them to bring her Jeep to a roadside restaurant under a bridge near El Control where she was eating with her boyfriend. One brother drove her Jeep and the other drove his Chevrolet Tahoe because they all planned to return to Progreso from there. According to Raquel Alvarado, witnesses told family members that the brothers arrived around 12:30 p.m. and saw members of the police unit called Hercules pushing their sister and Castaneda and hitting Erica. When the brothers intervened, the police took all four of them, along with their vehicles. The witnesses said the armed men identified themselves as members of the Hercules unit and warned against intervening. The Alvarados say they later found their children's cars at an import car lot belonging to Luis Alfredo Biasi, Matamoros' director of social services. Quintanilla could not confirm that. Biasi did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Associated Press. Mayor Leticia Salazar officially introduced Hercules in September as a group with particular skills to confront crime in high-risk operations, according to a press release. City Clerk Joe Mariano Vega, who was identified in the release as the group's commander, said in an interview earlier this year that Hercules was comprised of former marines and soldiers who policed hot zones for crime in the city's neighborhoods. Neither Salazar nor the city's spokeswoman returned messages seeking comment. Quintanilla said he saw no reason so far to interview Salazar or Biasi in the Alvarado case.

  • Ex-band member guilty in drum major's hazing death

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A former Florida A&M band member accused of being the ringleader of a brutal hazing ritual known as "Crossing Bus C" that killed a drum major was convicted Friday of manslaughter and felony hazing. Dante Martin, 27, was the first to stand trial in the November 2011 death of 26-year-old Robert Champion aboard a band bus parked outside a football game where the well-regarded Marching 100 band had performed. The case brought into focus the culture of hazing in the band, which was suspended for more than a year while officials tried to clean up the program. Martin was known as "the president of Bus C," witnesses testified, and he organized the initiations that required fellow band members to try to make their way through a pounding gauntlet of fists, drumsticks and mallets from the front of the bus to the back, including on that November day. Two other band members went through the bus before Champion, who was from Decatur, Georgia. Martin was convicted of misdemeanor hazing counts in their beatings. Champion's parents sat silently as the verdicts were read. Martin sat with his head down as several members of his family wept in the gallery behind him. "No one won here today — no one," said Robert Champion Sr. "We hate to see anyone's child go to prison. To know that my son's life will not be in vain, that he will make a difference, I hope that people will get the message that hazing isn't cool. It doesn't work. It doesn't need to be here. You need to stop now." The jury deliberated for about an hour before delivering its verdict. Martin's sentencing was set for Jan. 9 and he was taken into custody immediately after the verdict. Manslaughter is punishable by up to 15 years in prison in Florida. The hazing conviction means he could spend up to 22 years in jail. In the aftermath of Champion's death, the storied Marching 100, which had played at Super Bowls and before U.S. presidents, was suspended for more than a year, only starting to perform again at the beginning of the 2013 football season. Also, the university's former president, James Ammons, resigned and the band's director, Julian White, was fired before being allowed to retire. Several other former band members have pleaded guilty to lesser charges, and three await trial. Former band member Jessie Baskin pleaded no contest to manslaughter in March and received a year in county jail. He is the only one of the previous defendants to receive jail time. After the ritual, Champion complained of trouble breathing and vomited, then collapsed and died in a parking lot. Like Champion's father, state attorney Jeff Ashton said he hopes Martin's conviction will serve to deter other from engaging in hazing. The university now requires all students to sign pledges not to haze others. "That's why they (Florida lawmakers) passed the hazing statute in 2002, it was to say this process has got to stop," Ashton said. "It hasn't worked...I hope the message that gets across to anyone out there who is thinking of participating in these very dangerous activities is that if you do it, and something goes wrong, you're going to be responsible for it." Defense attorneys told jurors the ritual was more akin to a competition and that there was no actual hazing. They said Champion and the others voluntarily took part. "You can't take it in isolation and act like it was just any other band," defense attorney Richard Escobar said during closing arguments. "Brutal as it was, foolish as it was...it was competitive." Escobar and his co-counsel Dino Michaels left the court room without commenting. But they told Judge Renee Roche they planned to file a motion for a mistrial before the January sentencing. Ashton argued to jurors that the testimony made it clear that band members were looking for a measure of respect and acceptance by "crossing Bus C." But he challenged the defense's argument. "Tradition didn't kill Robert Champion," Ashton said. "Tradition isn't to blame. Tradition is not an excuse...It's not a defense to those that got caught." Champion's parents still have a wrongful death lawsuit pending against the university after settling with the charter bus company. Champion's mother, Pam Champion, said she would not be celebrating Friday's verdict. "Right now I don't have any tears," she said. "But those tears — and they will come I guarantee you— will not only be for my son, but for that young man (Martin) because of what was done to alter his mindset. "That's sad, because of the things that happened and what was allowed to occur."

  • Mexico judge orders immediate release of Marine

    SAN DIEGO (AP) — A Mexican judge has ordered the immediate release of a jailed U.S. Marine veteran who spent eight months behind bars for crossing the border with loaded guns. Family spokesman Jonathan Franks told The Associated Press on Friday that the judge decided to release retired Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi (Tah-mor-EE-si). Franks said the judge released him without making a determination on the charge against him. The family issued the following statement: "It is with an overwhelming and humbling feeling of relief that we confirm that Andrew was released today after spending 214 days in Mexican Jail." The 26-year-old Florida man said he got lost on a California freeway ramp that sent him across the border with no way to turn back. His long detention brought calls for his freedom from U.S. politicians, veterans groups and social media campaigns. In Mexico, possession of weapons restricted for use by the Army is a federal crime, and the country has been tightening up its border checks to stop the flow of US weapons that have been used by drug cartels. His attorney, Fernando Benitez, says Tahmooressi carries loaded guns with him because his weapons, which were bought legally in the U.S., make him feel safer. He is often distracted, which could have contributed to him becoming lost, Benitez said. Still, Mexican prosecutors say Tahmooressi broke the law, and they have denied claims by his attorney that he was held for about eight hours without a translator before authorities notified the U.S. Consulate. But a psychiatrist hired by Mexican prosecutors to examine the Afghanistan veteran agreed with the defense that he should get PTSD treatment in the United States, noting in a Sept. 30 report that Tahmooressi, who now serves in the Marine reserve, feels like he is constantly in danger. Tahmooressi did not admit wrongdoing, and he still maintains his innocence, his attorney said. His mother, Jill Tahmooressi, has said her son's time in a Mexican jail has been worse than his two tours in Afghanistan. Tahmooressi left Florida for San Diego in January to get help after dropping out of college, unable to concentrate or sleep, his mother said.

  • Avondale officer accused of secretly recording women at tanning salon

    AVONDALE, Ariz. -- A Goodyear police officer is accused of secretly recording women at a tanning salon in Avondale.Jeffrey Allen Streeter, 44, was arrested without incident around 1:45 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Avondale Police Department.The investigation began Oct. 15 when a female victim reported she had been videotaped without her consent at an Avondale tanning salon near Dysart Road and Rancho Santa Fe Boulevard.The victim reported she’d seen an object that appeared to be a camera phone resting on top of the dividing wall separating the tanning salon rooms as she undressed.An investigation revealed an additional 20 female victims were recorded, police said.Streeter was booked on 31 counts of surreptitious recording and one count of tampering with physical evidence.

  • Ruling clears way for dozens locked up to seek bail

    PHOENIX -- A federal appeals court rejected a last-ditch plea by an Arizona prosecutor to salvage Proposition 100, potentially paving the way for dozens of people locked up while awaiting trial to now seek bail.In a brief order Friday, the judges of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said they would not give Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery another chance to prove his claim that people not in this country legally are a greater flight risk and therefore should be denied bail. The court ruled two weeks ago that his office, then run by Andrew Thomas, failed to present any evidence to back that claim.Potentially more significant, the judges said they would not delay their ruling that the 2006 voter-approved measure is unconstitutional and unenforceable so that Montgomery could seek Supreme Court review. Absent immediate high court intervention, that entitles those locked up under the provisions of Proposition 100 statewide to now demand to be released on bail -- or their own recognizance.But Deputy Pima County Attorney Amelia Cramer said that does not mean Arizona judges will let them out.Cramer said there is a 2007 ruling by the Arizona Court of Appeals which upheld Proposition 100 as legal. And she said there's an argument to be made that Arizona trial judges are bound by that ruling --and can ignore what the 9th Circuit has said.The 2006 measure makes bail unavailable to those charged with "serious felony offenses'' if they are in this country illegally and if "the proof is evident or the presumption great'' that the person is guilty of the offense charged.

  • Desert Brass Band performs salute on Veterans Day

    The 36-piece Desert Brass band, directed by Charles Musgrave, will be back to perform a patriotic concert as a “Salute to our Veterans.” It will be at 3 p.m. Nov. 9 at the Willowbrook United Methodist Church, 19390 N. 99th Ave. in Sun City.  The band will perform traditional patriotic music, including: “Colonel Bogey,” “Sempre Fidelis” and “El Capitan,” along with “God and Country March,” “Battle Cry of Freedom” and “The Stars and Stripes Forever.” The band will feature trumpet soloist Dan Reed.Tickets are $5 per person at the door, with children under 12 admitted free.The Desert Brass is an British-style brass band. All musicians are volunteers. Many were professionals before retiring, and all enjoy sharing their talents.

  • Review: 'Interstellar' a sublime cosmic knockout

    Since his breakthrough with the backward-running "Memento," Christopher Nolan has made a plaything of time. In "Interstellar," he slips into its very fabric, shaping its flows and exploding its particles. It's an absurd endeavor. And it's one of the most sublime movies of the decade. As our chief large-canvas illusionist, Nolan's kaleidoscope puzzles have often dazzled more than they have moved, prizing brilliant, hocus-pocus architecture over emotional interiors. But a celestial warmth shines through "Interstellar," which is, at heart, a father-daughter tale grandly spun across a cosmic tapestry. There is turbulence along the way. "Interstellar" is overly explanatory about its physics, its dialogue can be clunky and you may want to send composer Hans Zimmer's relentless organ into deep space. But if you take these for blips rather than black holes, the majesty of "Interstellar" is something to behold. The film opens in the near future where a new kind of Dust Bowl, one called "the blight," brings crop-killing storms of dust upon the Midwest farm of engineer-turned-farmer Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and his two children, the adventuresome 10-year-old Murph (Mackenzie Foy) and the 15-year-old budding farmer Tom (Timothee Chalamet). In the imperiled climate, space exploration is viewed as part of the "excess" of the 20th century. Cooper, a former NASA pilot, still believes in science's capacity for greatness. Cooper's curiosity brings him to a secret NASA lair run by a Dr. Brand (Michael Caine). Large-scale dreaming has gone underground. They enlist him to pilot a desperate mission through a wormhole to follow an earlier expedition that may have found planets capable of hosting human life. Much discussion of gravity and relativity follows, as Nolan (who co-wrote the script with his brother Jonathan and consulted with theoretical physicist Kip Thorne) tries valiantly to place his quasi-plausible sci-fi tale within the realm of mathematics and science. "Interstellar" is a trip, for sure, but it's not a supernatural one. There will be no aliens poking forth from bellies or monument-blasting battles with extraterrestrials; it's just about us humans. The journey means Cooper will, under the best of circumstances, be gone for years. The parting from Murph, who resents the abandonment, is wrenching. He's a dutiful, driven father stepping out to work, only in another galaxy. His crew are Brand's daughter (Anne Hathaway), a pair of researchers (a wonderful David Gyasi and Wes Bentley) and a talking robot named TARS that looks like the monolith of "2001: A Space Odyssey" if it were a shape-shifting Transformer. What happens when the space ship, Endurance, moves past Saturn and passes through the wormhole? For starters, Nolan and his cinematographer, Hoyte Van Hoytema, conjure beautiful galactic imagery, contorting space and, eventually, dimensions. But what he's really doing is dropping countless big ideas —science, survival, exploration, love — into a cosmic blender, and seeing what keeps its meaning out there in the heavenly abyss. As in "The Dark Knight," Nolan doesn't investigate all of its philosophical questions so much as juggle them in an often dazzling, occasionally frustratingly incomplete way. But under extreme gravitational forces, the core of "Interstellar" holds. It remains tethered to Earth, toggling between barren, otherworldly landscapes and life back home on an increasingly uninhabitable planet. There, Murph (now played by Jessica Chastain) has grown into a physicist trying to solve an essential equation. More than anything, "Interstellar" makes you feel the great preciousness of time, a resource as valuable as oxygen. A misadventure of a few hours on one watery planet, where relative time accelerates, costs the astronauts decades. Returning to the ship, Cooper watches videos of his kids growing up before his eyes and weeps uncontrollably. All of the visual awe, the quantum mathematics, the seeming complexity of the hugely ambitious, nearly three hour-long film is just stardust clouding the orbit between a dad and his girl. Whereas most science fiction withers out in space, "Interstellar" rockets home. "Interstellar," a Paramount Pictures release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for "some intense perilous action and brief strong language." Running time: 165 minutes. Three and a half stars out of four. ___ MPAA definition of PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

  • Kick back on Easy Street at Carefree Fine Art & Wine Festival

    If you’re in the market for fine art, be sure to visit Thunderbird Artists’ 21st Annual Carefree Fine Art & Wine Festival taking place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today through Sunday in downtown Carefree, at the intersection of Easy Street and HoHum Drive.The award-winning festival features more than 165 juried fine artists, live musical entertainers, food, sweets and a wine-tasting experience.“This year’s festival features a fabulous roster of juried artists,” said Judi Combs, CEO of Thunderbird Artists and Arizona Fine Art EXPO. “As you stroll through Easy Street, you’ll be captivated by the diverse selection of high-quality original pieces of fine art, including small to life-sized bronzes, paintings, pottery, photography, scratchboard, wood, clay, metal and glass sculptures, batiks, jewelry and more.”This year’s featured artist is oil painter Lauren Knode, whose booth is located across from Thunderbird Artists’ information booth. Knode enjoys creating paintings with an atmospheric luminescence while working in oil, acrylic or pastel. After 20 years as a teacher in Oregon, she moved to the Southwest to pursue her passion for the arts full time. Her inspiration is derived from the beauty of nature in Arizona: the ever-changing brilliance of a sunset, the light glowing through the delicately translucent petals of a flower, even the contrast of the sharp and prickly cacti. Her work aims to transport the viewer to a peaceful, quiet place within.Knode’s travels have influenced her as well. A trip to Santa Fe and Taos, N.M., inspired her paintings of old Pueblo Indian homes. Before beginning a commissioned landscape, she often visits the person’s home to discover the natural environment and ambiance the commissioner wishes to capture.Several wineries will provide a wonderful selection of local, national and international wines for sampling. For $10, patrons will receive an engraved souvenir glass with six tasting tickets, allowing them to enjoy a variety of wine, while strolling among countless pieces of original artwork and listening to local musicians perform. Additional tasting tickets can be purchased for $1.

  • Glendale’s Tanger Outlets poised to open expansion

    GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Four new stores are scheduled to open in November in Glendale’s Tanger Outlets Mall in what will be the first wave of a two-part expansion at the retail location off Loop 101 and Glendale Avenue.A 60,000-square foot addition will include Eddie Bauer, Abercrombie & Fitch, Ann Taylor, and Tilly’s, all opening in mid-November. Another four stores in that addition are expected to open during the first quarter of 2015, said mall general manager Jessica Reeves. New stores in the second portion of the expansion will be announced at a later date, she said.“We’re really excited. We’re set to open before the busy Black Friday weekend,” Reeves said.The two latest groups of additions will give the outlet mall over 90 stores, including some of the foremost retail names. The outlet concept includes grouping brand-name stores together. Directly connected to their producers, outlet stores typically offer merchandise at prices below traditional retailers.Tanger’s newest stores will add outerwear, clothing, shoes and gear (Eddie Bauer); surf and skate clothing (Tilly’s); chic women’s clothing (Ann Taylor); and men’s, women’s and children’s clothing and accessories (Abercrombie & Fitch). The rectangular-shaped structure that will house the new stores will replace parking areas along the southern end of the mall.Reeves, who has been with Tanger for over two years, said it always has been the company’s intent to enlarge the Glendale site since opening in November 2012. The decision to grow now has been fueled by faster-than-anticipated customer and retailer demand, she said.

  • U.S. shrimp rife with murky labeling

    New Orleans • Consumers around the nation can’t be sure what kind of shrimp they’re buying if they simply look at the label or menu at supermarkets, grocers and restaurants, an advocacy group says.Oceana did a DNA-based survey of shrimp sold at outlets in New York City; Washington, D.C.; Portland, Oregon; and various spots around the Gulf of Mexico.The group said it found about 30 percent of 143 shrimp products bought from 111 vendors were not what the label said. Cheap imported farm-raised shrimp is being sold as prized wild-caught Gulf shrimp, common shrimp sold as premium shrimp and shrimp of all kinds sold with no indication whatsoever about where they came from, the group said.Oceana is urging Congress and regulators to enforce proper labeling.The group acknowledged that the survey was but a small sample, but said the survey using DNA techniques is the first of its kind. The group did a similar survey last year for fish and made similar findings. A laboratory tested each sample to identify what kind of shrimp each was by species.“It was a first good look at shrimp,” said Kimberly Warner, a marine scientist with Oceana. She went out and obtained many of the samples.

  • Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'I'm proud to be gay'

    NEW YORK (AP) — Apple CEO Tim Cook says he's proud to be gay. The public declaration, in an essay written for Bloomberg Businessweek, makes Cook the highest-profile business CEO to come out as gay. Cook said that while he never denied his sexuality, he never publicly acknowledged it, either. The executive said that for years he's been open with many people about his sexual orientation and that plenty of his Apple colleagues know he is gay. Cook wrote in the column, published Thursday, that it wasn't an easy choice to publicly disclose that he is gay, but that he felt the acknowledgement could help others. "I've come to realize that my desire for personal privacy has been holding me back from doing something more important," he wrote. Three days ago, Cook challenged his home state of Alabama to better ensure the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Alabama is among the states that do not recognize same-sex marriage, and it also doesn't offer legal protections on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Cook is a native of Robertsdale, Alabama, and attended Auburn University. The announcement is a "huge deal," said Richard Metheny of executive search firm Witt/Kieffer. "This really sets the stage for 'It's OK,'" he said. "Anything CEOs do is very magnified, very complicated, and it affects a lot of people. ... There's no taking away that he has become a role model and will have a positive influence on lots of people that would like to be comfortable being out in the world of business." "I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me," Cook wrote in the essay Thursday. The executive said that "being gay has given me a deeper understanding of what it means to be in the minority and provided a window into the challenges that people in other minority groups deal with every day." Cook said he's been lucky to work for a company that "loves creativity and innovation and knows it can only flourish when you embrace people's differences." Cook, 53, succeeded Apple founder Steve Jobs as CEO of Apple Inc. in 2011. Apple Inc. has been an outspoken champion for diversity since Cook succeeded Jobs as CEO. The company has trumpeted the phrase, "Inclusion inspires innovation," as a rallying cry. Cook has reinforced that message on his Twitter account with periodic posts supporting gay rights in the workplace. Cook's public declaration that he is gay comes a little more than two months after Robert Hanson — the former CEO of American Eagle Outfitters Inc. — wrote a piece for Time in which he talked about being an openly gay man for as long as he's been in business and running companies. Hanson is currently the CEO of luxury jewelry brand John Hardy. There are no other publicly gay CEOs of major companies. United Therapeutics Corp. CEO Martine Rothblatt, who was born male and is now female, has been open about her transgender status. ___ AP Technology Writer Mae Anderson contributed to this report from New York. MICHELLE CHAPMAN, AP Business Writer

Featured columns

  • Search Folder organizes correspondence

    A most frustrating thing you can encounter is the need to reinstall your Windows program. First of all, if you are like many of us, you may not be able to find the reinstall disk that came with your computer when you bought it. If you bought an HP, Dell or one of several other prominent brands your computer may be equipped with a recovery partition on the hard disk.The recovery partition contains all of the logic to restore your computer to the same state that it was in when you bought it. If you have a recovery partition, it will appear on your computer as the D: drive. Simply dig into the documentation provided by your manufacturer and follow the directions for reinstalling Windows. Usually the recovery is triggered by using a function key such as F9 or F10 during the boot-up process. Normally there will be no need to input your Windows product key code since the recovery process will find the old product code and insert it into the operating system setup.However, if you do not have a recovery partition on your hard disk, you may need to have a good product key to install Windows.In times past you could look up the product key in the registry because it was recorded in clear text. However, since Windows XP the product key is encrypted. So you may need the services of a key finder. There are several good ones available at no cost and can be downloaded if needed. When I had the need for one in the past, I used one named CPP-ProductKeyFinder. It worked quickly and accurately. It also found the product keys for MS Office and another program.Recently, I have used a free program named Belarc Advisor (downloadable from www.belarc.com). This program creates several pages of information about the system in which it is installed, including software product keys.Use Search Folders in Outlook to Group Messages by Sender, Topic, Keyword, and More

  • OPINION: A plan for reversing Islamization in the West

    I was near Washington, D.C. interviewing the visiting Geert Wilders, leader of the Netherlands’ Party for Freedom, when the news flashed that Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, the Canadian convert to Islam who terrorized Ottawa last week, had previously had his passport lifted by the Canadian government as an officially designated “high-risk traveler.”That means that before Zehaf-Bibeau put a bullet through the chest of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, a young reservist standing guard with an unloaded rifle at the Canadian National War Memorial, and before Zehaf-Bibeau rushed into the nation’s Parliament building, where, thankfully, he was gunned down by security before he could murder again, Canadian authorities had already identified him as someone likely to join the jihad abroad. In fact, so likely was Zehaf-Bibeau to join a group such as ISIS, Canadian authorities did what many Western governments are doing in the name of counter-terrorism: They took Zehaf-Bideau’s passport away.“That’s the same as the other one!” Wilders notes energetically, referring to Martin Couture-Rouleau, also an Islamic convert and “high-risk traveler,” who drove his car into two Canadian soldiers in Quebec earlier in the week, killing Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent. Couture-Rouleau, who was shot dead at the scene of his crime, had had his passport taken from him in July when he was arrested at the airport before he could travel to Turkey.In other words, but for good Canadian police work, it looks as if both of these murderers would have left Canada and disappeared into the bloody maw of the Islamic State. Boy, that was close.No, that was insane. Such a policy, which the Dutch government also follows, frustrates Wilders to no end.“Let them leave,” says Wilders. “Let them leave, or detain them. I find it incomprehensible that Western governments stop people who want to leave to fight for jihad in Syria or Iraq.” Let them go and never let them return, he says, or with sufficient evidence, detain them. While the West combats the Islamic State, he points out, “nothing is being done to make our own countries safe.”

  • OPINION: Sometimes, government is essential

    Two years ago, President Obama was striding the beaches of New Jersey and spearheading the federal response to the damage wrought by Hurricane Sandy.Gov. Chris Christie was praising the president and Washington’s help for his battered state — much to the dismay of his fellow Republicans.Four out of 5 voters shared Christie’s support for the president’s actions, and Sandy helped solidify Obama’s decisive victory over Mitt Romney just a few days later.Today, the political landscape has shifted dramatically. The role of government has turned from an asset to a liability for Obama. His favorable rating in the latest ABC/Washington Post poll has sunk to 40 percent, the lowest mark of his presidency.Since those heady days on the Jersey shore, a string of missteps has soured the public and provided Republicans with a prime political opening. The botched rollout of Obamacare was compounded by scandals at the Veterans Administration, the IRS and the Secret Service. Then came Ebola.A patient being treated at a Texas hospital died from the disease. Two nurses were infected, and one was allowed to board a plane to Cleveland.

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The Tip Top Dancers performed a memorial tribute to Kelley Greenburg, a longtime Sun City perf...

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