The Lookout
  • The memorial service for slain Colorado prisons chief Tom Clements. (Jerilee Bennett/ Getty)

    The Easter weekend assassination of a Texas prosecutor highlights a growing concern about targeted attacks on law enforcement authorities.

    It’s a fear one Texas police officer shared with Yahoo News. He and his family spent the past holiday season essentially in hiding after learning his name was inked on a white supremacist gang’s hit list.

    “The title of the list was ‘S.O.S.’ which means smash on sight or execute,” the officer said. “If you have an S.O.S. put out on you, that pretty much means they’re going to try and kill you.”

    Yahoo News is not identifying the officer for his protection. The threat eventually subsided, but he remains vigilant months later, especially after Kaufman County, Texas, District Attorney Mike McLelland, 63, and his wife, Cynthia, 65, were shot to death in their home 30 miles east of Dallas last weekend, apparently ambushed.

    Two months earlier, Mark Hasse, a prosecutor in McLelland’s office, was gunned down while walking from his car to the courthouse.

    No

    Read More »from Spike in law enforcement assassinations raises fears
  • A woman rides her bicycle with a protective mask in Beijing. (Getty Images)

    More than 1.2 million people died prematurely in China in 2010 as a result of outdoor air pollution, a new analysis of scientific data shows.

    The summary—released Sunday in Beijing and first published by the Lancet, a British medical journal—is based on 2010's Global Burden of Disease Study and was reported on by The New York Times.

    Air pollution led to 3.2 million deaths worldwide in 2010, the study found, with China contributing more than a third of them.

    “Ambient particulate matter pollution” was listed fourth among the leading risk factors for deaths in China, the Times noted, behind dietary risks, high blood pressure and smoking.

    Reports like these "are politically threatening in the eyes of some Chinese officials," the Times reported:

    Chinese officials cut out sections of a 2007 report called “Cost of Pollution in China” that discussed premature deaths. The report’s authors had concluded that 350,000 to 400,000 people die prematurely in China each year because of outdoor air

    Read More »from Air pollution linked to 1.2M deaths in China in 2010
  • Roadside angels in Newtown, Conn., Dec. 15, 2012 (Dylan Stableford/Yahoo News)

    Parents of the victims in the Newtown school shootings made an emotional plea to Connecticut lawmakers on Monday, urging a "complete limit" on high-capacity gun magazines like the ones Adam Lanza used to carry out the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

    "The horrible, brutal truth is that 154 bullets were fired in four minutes, killing our children, our daughters, our wives," said Nicole Hockley, whose 6-year-old son, Dylan, was killed in the Dec. 14 shootings. She spoke at a press conference in Hartford, where state lawmakers were expected to be presented with gun control proposals Monday afternoon.

    "As supporters of the Second Amendment, we want to understand how we can use technology, innovation and new thinking to solve an old intractable problem," Hockley continued. "We specifically want an up or down vote on the banning of these large-capacity magazines with no grandfathering clause, because we learned the way that no other parent should learn the most dangerous part of the assault weapon is the magazine."

    Last week, search warrants related to the massacre were unsealed by a court, showing Lanza was found dead inside the school with 10 magazines capable of firing 30 rounds at a time. Twenty children and six adults were killed at the school before the 20-year-old gunman shot himself with a handgun.

    "We have learned that in the time it took him to reload in one of the classrooms, 11 children were able to escape," Hockley said. "We ask ourselves every day, every minute that if those magazines had held 10 rounds, forcing the shooter to reload six more times, would our children be alive today?"

    Read More »from Newtown parents call for ban on high-capacity gun magazines

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