Syrian rebel chief calls for weapons
The head of Syria's rebels said Friday that the food and medical supplies the United States plans to give his fighters for the first time won't bring them any closer to defeating President Bashar Assad's forces in the country's civil war. "We don't want food and drink, and we don't want bandages. When we're wounded, we want to die. The only thing we want is weapons," Gen. Salim Idris, chief of staff of the opposition's Supreme Military Council, told the Associated Press by telephone. He warned that the failure to provide heavier arms is only prolonging the uprising that has killed an estimated 70,000 people.
'East Coast Rapist' gets three life terms
Aaron Thomas, who admitted that he raped numerous women in several states over two decades, will remain in prison for the rest of his life after a Prince William County, Va., judge sentenced him Friday to more than three life terms for a Halloween 2009 attack on three teenage trick-or-treaters.
Circuit Court Judge Mary Grace O'Brien gave Thomas, 41, the maximum sentence on several of the charges, which included rape and abduction. The sentence was the first handed down in the "East Coast Rapist" case and effectively makes any future sentences moot. There is no parole in Virginia.
FORT MEADE, Md.
More serious charges in WikiLeaks case
Military prosecutors announced Friday that they had decided to try Army Pfc. Bradley Manning on the most serious charges they have brought against him and seek a sentence that could be life without parole, despite his voluntary guilty plea to 10 lesser charges that carry a maximum total sentence of 20 years.
Manning admitted in court Thursday that he had provided about 700,000 government documents to WikiLeaks, the anti-secrecy group, in the most extensive leak of confidential and classified material in U.S. history. But he pleaded guilty to the lesser charges in what is known as a "naked plea" — one made without agreement with prosecutors to cap the potential sentence in return. His court-martial is expected to begin on June 3.
Odessa, Texas: The death of a 3-year-old adopted Russian boy has been ruled an accident by Texas authorities, but officials said Friday they are still investigating a case that has become a flash point in the debate over international adoption.
Denver: Attorneys for the suspect in the deadly Colorado theater shooting, James Holmes, said for the first time Friday that they're considering entering a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity on behalf of their client.
Washington: President Barack Obama issued pardons on Friday to 17 convicted felons, making the first use of his clemency powers in his second term. Their offenses were largely small-scale crimes many years ago, and 12 of the people had not been sentenced to serve time in prison.