Thursday, December 14, 2017
News Roundup

New York police disband unit that spied on Muslims

New York

Police disband unit that spied on Muslims

A special New York Police Department unit that sparked controversy by tracking the daily lives of Muslims in an effort to detect terror threats has been disbanded, police officials said Tuesday. Police spokesman Stephen Davis confirmed that detectives assigned to the unit had been transferred to other duties within the department's Intelligence Division. A review of the division by new police Commissioner William Bratton found that the same information collected by the unit could be better collected through direct contact with community groups, officials said.

Detroit

Deal reached on retiree pensions

The city of Detroit reached a deal with a group of retired police officers and firefighters that would protect pensions but trim annual cost-of-living payments — the first major agreement with retirees in the bankruptcy case, mediators announced Tuesday. The city retreated from an earlier proposed 6 percent cut in pensions and the elimination of the 2.25 percent cost-of-living payment. Leaders of the Retired Detroit Police and Fire Fighters Association, which has more than 6,000 members, endorsed the deal.

Washington

Obama commutes sentence over typo

President Barack Obama on Tuesday commuted the sentence of a drug convict who was mistakenly sentenced to an extra 31/2 years in prison based on a typographical error, the White House said. The convict, Ceasar Huerta Cantu of Katy, Texas, pleaded guilty in 2006 in Virginia to drug charges and money laundering. But a mistake in his presentence report — the number 36 was typed where it should have been 34 — meant he could receive a longer term under U.S. sentencing guidelines. As a result, his sentence was increased by 42 months. Obama commuted the sentence from 15 years to 11½ years.

Elsewhere

Washington: The White House said Tuesday that President Barack Obama will award the Medal of Honor to former Army Sgt. Kyle White for courageous actions in Afghanistan.

Australia: A robotic submarine looking for the lost Malaysian jet continued its second seabed search today in the Indian Ocean.

Nigeria: Suspected Muslim extremists kidnapped about 100 girls Tuesday from a school in northeastern Nigeria, less than a day after militants bombed a bus station and killed 75 people in the capital.

Times wires

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Updated: 5 hours ago

Winter meetings journal: Rays trade for money to sign top international free agent

LAKE BUENA VISTA — While most of the business conducted at the meetings impacts the big-league team one way or another, the Rays are working to finalize a move they hope pays off big sometime in the 2020s.In trading Wednesday to acquire $1 million in...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Market starting to set itself as Rays’ trade talks intensify

Market starting to set itself as Rays’ trade talks intensify

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Alex Colome claimed he was just showing good social media manners Tuesday night in following four Cardinals-related Instagram accounts since they were saying nice things about him.In doing so, whether for that reason or another mor...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Senate race motivated Alabama’s white, black evangelical voters in different ways

Senate race motivated Alabama’s white, black evangelical voters in different ways

Nationally, the word "evangelical" has become in recent years nearly synonymous with "conservative Republican" and Alabama is one of the most evangelical states in the country. But in Alabama, there is a difference: black Christians.While in many par...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Gators crash volleyball power party, play national semifinal Thursday

Gators crash volleyball power party, play national semifinal Thursday

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It’s difficult to call a volleyball program that has been to the Final Four eight times an underdog, especially the way Florida rallied to beat Southern California and punch its latest ticket. Yet of the four schools descending on ...
Updated: 6 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Dec. 13

Wednesday’s scoreboardGirls soccerCountryside 3, St. Petersburg 1Girls basketballPalm Harbor U. 42, Largo 25
Updated: 6 hours ago
Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith named to fill Franken seat

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith named to fill Franken seat

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Lt. Gov. Tina Smith on Wednesday to fill fellow Democrat Al Franken’s Senate seat until a special election in November, setting up his longtime and trusted adviser for a potentially bruising 2018...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Florida Toys for Tots charity raffles off AR-15 rifle. Gun debate ensues.

Florida Toys for Tots charity raffles off AR-15 rifle. Gun debate ensues.

SPRING HILL — Hernando County Commission Vice Chairman Steve Champion wanted to do something to help raise money for the annual Toys for Tots drive. So he donated the grand prize for the Nov. 18 raffle:It was an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle.That led to ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Thefts from cell towers interrupted service, deputies say

Thefts from cell towers interrupted service, deputies say

Lost cell signal recently? The culprit could be a 40-year-old Ruskin man who deputies said stole thousands of dollars worth of the equipment that powers cell towers. The theft interrupted cell tower signals on at least two occasions, deputies said, i...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Foot washes ashore in Canada, again; Abbas wants U.S. out as Mideast mediator; 12 sentenced to life for gang-raping kids; more in world news

Foot washes ashore in Canada, again; Abbas wants U.S. out as Mideast mediator; 12 sentenced to life for gang-raping kids; more in world news

CanadaJust another foot washing ashoreAnother human foot has been found on British Columbia’s coastline, the 13th such grim discovery since 2007. Police said a man was walking on the beach in Jordan River on Vancouver Island when his dog found the fo...
Updated: 7 hours ago