Sunday, May 20, 2018
News Roundup

New York court asked to drop murder charges in 1979 Etan Patz case

New York

Court asked to toss charges in '79 child killing

A man's confession in one of the nation's most notorious child disappearances was false, peppered with questionable claims and made after almost seven hours of police questioning, his lawyer said Wednesday in court papers asking a judge to dismiss the murder case. "No evidence or witnesses have been found corroborating any of the few facts" in Pedro Hernandez's statements about the 1979 vanishing of 6-year-old Etan Patz, defense lawyer Harvey Fishbein wrote, arguing that there's not enough proof to support the case. The Manhattan District Attorney's Office, which has previously said there's sufficient evidence to sustain the charges, declined to comment. A judge isn't expected to rule until next month.

Washington

Kerry: Gains made in Libya inquiry

Seven months after the attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya, the Obama administration said Wednesday it was making progress in holding accountable those responsible for killing Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. Testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States has identified people it thinks were involved in the Benghazi attack. FBI investigators are still combing through video and other evidence gathered from largely lawless eastern Libya, he said.

Washington

Report: Rethink Iran sanctions

A panel of former senior U.S. officials and outside experts, including several who recently left the Obama administration, issued a surprisingly critical assessment Wednesday of U.S. diplomacy toward Iran, urging President Barack Obama to become more engaged and to reconsider the likelihood that harsh sanctions will drive Tehran to concessions. In a report issued by the Iran Project, the group suggested the sanctions policy may be backfiring. As the pressure has increased, it concluded, sanctions have "contributed to an increase in repression and corruption within Iran" and "may be sowing the seeds of long-term alienation between the Iranian people and the United States."

Wellington, New Zealand

Gay marriage legal in New Zealand

New Zealand on Wednesday became the 13th country in the world and the first in the Asia-Pacific region to legalize same-sex marriage. Lawmakers voted 77 to 44 in favor of the gay-marriage bill on its third and final reading Wednesday night. Prime Minister John Key supported the law change, after last May saying he wasn't opposed to gay marriage shortly after President Barack Obama voiced his support for it.

Wallops Island, Va.

Test rocket launch is scrubbed

A private company hired by NASA to make supply runs to the International Space Station scrubbed a Wednesday test launch of an unmanned rocket, saying an important data cord linked to the rocket's second stage detached too soon. The towering Antares rocket was scheduled to lift off from Virginia's Eastern Shore when the countdown clock was halted at the 12-minute mark. Barron Beneski, a spokesman for Orbital Sciences Corp. in Dulles, said another launch attempt would be tried no sooner than Friday afternoon.

Times wires

Comments
Obama’s education secretary: Let’s boycott school until gun laws change

Obama’s education secretary: Let’s boycott school until gun laws change

Former Education Secretary Arne Duncan pushed a radical idea on Twitter: Parents should pull their children out of school until elected officials pass stricter gun control laws.His tweet came hours after a shooting rampage at a Houston-area high scho...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Family, friends recall shooting victims’ optimism, humor

Family, friends recall shooting victims’ optimism, humor

SANTA FE, Texas — Hardworking. Funny. Loving. Grieving family and friends recalled the endearing qualities of some of the victims of Friday’s mass shooting at a Texas high school, as authorities on Saturday released the names of the 10 killed. Eight ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Softball: Scouting the Academy at the Lakes vs. Lake Worth Christian semifinal

Softball: Scouting the Academy at the Lakes vs. Lake Worth Christian semifinal

Academy at the Lakes (24-4) vs. Lake Worth Christian (10-3)Where: 11:50 a.m. Monday at Historic Dodgertown, Vero BeachHow they got thereAcademy at the Lakes defeated Seacrest Country Day 11-1, defeated Canterbury 5-1Lake Worth Christian defeated...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Rays hang on to beat Angels 5-3 behind Robertson slam, get back to .500

Rays hang on to beat Angels 5-3 behind Robertson slam, get back to .500

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Playing .500 ball is obviously no goal, and the Rays certainly know that.But given where they came from, that terrible 1-8 start that oozed into 3-12 and 4-13, climbing back to the respectability of .500 would be an accomplish...
Updated: 11 hours ago

2 tons of fertilizer spilled into channel leading to Tampa Bay, Kinder Morgan reports to state

TAMPA — As much as two tons of fertilizer accidentally spilled into a channel that leads to the upper part of Tampa Bay, according to a report sent Friday night to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.DEP spokeswoman Dee Ann Miller sai...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays journal: New pitching plan worked so well Romo starts again Sunday

Rays journal: New pitching plan worked so well Romo starts again Sunday

ANAHEIM, Calif. — The first part of the Rays' new and unusual pitching plan worked so well Saturday, as game "opener" RHP Sergio Romo struck out the first three Angels hitters, that the Rays will do it again on Sunday.That's right. Romo will st...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: How Tampa Bay withstood Washington’s barrage

Lightning-Capitals: How Tampa Bay withstood Washington’s barrage

TAMPA — A two-goal lead was suddenly only one, and the Washington Capitals, having pulled their goalie, had a furious 96-second siege.Andrei Vasilevskiy made the last three of his 28 saves to preserve the Lightning's 3-2 victory Saturday in Gam...
Published: 05/19/18
Updated: 05/20/18
Lightning-Capitals: How Tampa Bay’s early surges carried the day

Lightning-Capitals: How Tampa Bay’s early surges carried the day

TAMPA — Dan Girardi knew where the puck was heading. It was heading to Alex Ovechkin for a one-timer on net, so Girardi did the only thing he could do. He blocked it.With his rump."It hit me right in the cheek," said Girardi, the Lightning defe...
Published: 05/19/18
Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s 3-2 victory in Game 5

Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s 3-2 victory in Game 5

TAMPA — Faster than Justify down the stretch at the Preakness, quicker than Harry and Meghan walked down the aisle at Windsor Castle, the Lightning jumped on Game 5 of the Eastern Conference final. No runaway gallop. No funny hats. Just ho...
Published: 05/19/18
Lightning-Capitals: How Ryan Callahan and his linemates overwhelmed the Caps

Lightning-Capitals: How Ryan Callahan and his linemates overwhelmed the Caps

TAMPA — They're called grinders. Pluggers. Checkers.They're lunch-pail guys. Like 9-to-5ers. They get up every day and go to work. They punch in and punch out for no glory or credit. But the business would fall apart without them.They're the fo...
Published: 05/19/18