The Lookout
  • Latest developments [5:45 pm EST]

    • Nine people taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries; all but one have been released
    • Search for victims is about halfway complete
    • Pilots reportedly safe and conscious
    • Fuel dumped before crash likely avoided, "massive fireball"

    Officials have confirmed that a U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornet jet has crashed in Virginia after taking off from U.S. Naval Air Station Oceana, with the two pilots believed to have ejected before impact.

    U.S. Navy Captain Mark Weisgerber has confirmed that the jet suffered a "catastrophic mechanical malfunction," shortly after takeoff but has not released specifics of what may have caused the crash. Weisgerber said that both pilots are reportedly conscious and "doing well."

    There are currently no reports of fatalities on the ground. Several photos have emerged from the crash, showing the wreckage and black smoke rising from nearby buildings. Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms has said that rescue crews have completed a search of two of the five buildings impacted by the crash.

    Virginia Beach EMS division chief Bruce Nedelka said several witnesses saw the pilots dumping fuel from the jet before ejecting, which likely avoided a massive fireball and fire.

    Yahoo News has made several calls to the Virginia Fire Department but has been unable to obtain an official statement. In an interview with CBS News, Tim Riley of the Virginia Beach Fire Department said:

    "We are confirming that there is one aircraft from Oceana that has crashed into the apartment behind us. Both pilots were transported to a local hospital and both were conscious, that's all I'm going to report on that."

    "In the apartment complex we do not have any confirmation yet of injuries. We are still in the stages of extinguishing the fire and we have to do some extensive searches in those buildings."

    Riley said the department is working on an unified press release that will be issued to the public shortly.

    Additional updates posted after the jump...

    Read More »from U.S. Navy jet crashes in Virginia; 2 pilots ejected, 9 taken to hospital
  • A "Justice for Trayvon" march in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/The St. Paul Pioneer Press, John Autey)

    Americans are sharply divided by race in their opinion of the shooting of an unarmed black teenager in Florida by a Hispanic neighborhood watchman.

    A Gallup/USA Today poll finds that most black Americans (73 percent) think Trayvon Martin's shooter, George Zimmerman, would have been arrested if Martin had been white. Only 33 percent of non-Hispanic white people said the same thing.

    The racial divide on Zimmerman's guilt was also big: 51 percent of black people said Zimmerman is "definitely guilty" based on the information available, compared to only 10 percent of whites. About 20 percent of both whites and blacks said Zimmerman was "probably guilty."

    Zimmerman told police that he was following Martin because he looked "suspicious" when the unarmed 17-year-old then attacked him. Zimmerman said he shot Martin in self-defense. He hasn't been charged. Martin's family says Zimmerman followed and then attacked and shot Martin in an act of vigilante policing.

    An earlier Pew Research Center

    Read More »from Poll shows big racial divide in opinion on Trayvon Martin case
  • The Supreme Court. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)In what some are calling a partisan ploy, a federal judge issued a demand on Tuesday that Justice Department attorneys submit a three-page letter explaining whether they believe courts have the right to strike down laws. Judge Jerry Smith, a Reagan appointee who sits on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, said some unspecified people were troubled that President Barack Obama told reporters earlier this week that it would be "unprecedented" for the "unelected" Supreme Court to strike down the Affordable Care Act. But many Supreme Court experts expressed surprise at Smith's overtly political rebuke of the president.

    "We respect the decisions made by the courts since Marbury v. Madison," Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday, referencing the 1803 Supreme Court case that established the courts' right to strike down laws. "Courts have final say." Holder told reporters that the Justice Department will submit the letter to the 5th Circuit on Thursday.

    With his comments this week, Obama became the first president to weigh in on a major Supreme Court case after oral arguments wrapped up but before a decision was actually issued, according to University of Texas Supreme Court historian Lucas Powe. He says this is an unprecedented move largely because previous presidents didn't have the opportunity to do the same thing. Franklin D. Roosevelt hung back while judges were deliberating his casesthough he criticized them after they ruledfor fear of being labeled a dictator. (Roosevelt eventually threatened to get Congress to pass a court-packing law, and two justices became friendlier to his laws.) And Chief Justice Fred Vinson (falsely) assured Harry Truman that the court would not strike down his seizure of the steel industry, convincing the president not to pursue any public arm-twisting.

    Read More »from Jerry Smith’s Obama rebuke questioned by legal experts

Pagination

(3,632 Stories)
  • Business Highlights

    ___ Why high oil prices are actually good for airlines Airline executives frequently complain about fuel costs, but higher prices actually have been good for business. Fuel now accounts for more than a ...

  • Pro-Russia separatists take armor, humiliating Ukraine forces
    Pro-Russia separatists take armor, humiliating Ukraine forces

    By Stephanie Nebehay and Christian Lowe GENEVA/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Foreign ministers from East and West will try to defuse the Ukraine crisis on Thursday in Geneva, once frequently the scene of Cold War negotiations, but will risk being upstaged by Russian President Vladimir Putin. With Russian troops massed on the border with Ukraine, prospects of significant progress at the four-way talks appear slim. By contrast, what Putin says during his annual "hotline" session with the Russian people may have far greater influence on events in Ukraine's rebellious east. Thursday's talks will bring the ministers of Russia, Ukraine and the United States together with the European Union's foreign policy chief to discuss a crisis in which Kiev is struggling to reassert its authority in eastern towns largely controlled by armed pro-Russian separatists.

  • If filed, plane lawsuits might not get heard in US
    If filed, plane lawsuits might not get heard in US

    BEIJING (AP) — Since Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 went missing, some lawyers have claimed they can get several millions of dollars in damages for each lost passenger by taking the cases to the United States. But past lawsuits show U.S. federal courts are more likely to throw such cases out if the crashes happened overseas.

  • Casual pot use causes brain abnormalities in the young: study
    Casual pot use causes brain abnormalities in the young: study

    Young, casual marijuana smokers experience potentially harmful changes to their brains, with the drug altering regions of the mind related to motivation and emotion, researchers found. The study to be published on Wednesday in the Journal of Neuroscience differs from many other pot-related research projects that are focused on chronic, heavy users of cannabis. The collaborative effort between Northwestern University's medical school, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School showed a direct correlation between the number of times users smoked and abnormalities in the brain. "What we're seeing is changes in people who are 18 to 25 in core brain regions that you never, ever want to fool around with," said co-senior study author Dr. Hans Beiter, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University.

  • 5 things to know about how Obama 'evolved' his support of same-sex marriage
    5 things to know about how Obama 'evolved' his support of same-sex marriage

    For years, when asked about his position on same-sex marriage, President Obama would say that it was "evolving." How that evolution occurred and the insiders and outsiders who helped to push it along are addressed in an in-depth article from journalist Jo Becker in Wednesday's New York Times Magazine.

  • Ukraine army's humiliations pile up as eastern push fizzles
    Ukraine army's humiliations pile up as eastern push fizzles

    The humiliation Wednesday of the Ukrainian army in its much-vaunted "anti-terrorist" push into separatist eastern territory makes an embarrassing string of failures even worse. They pointed out that the region, the Donbass, is hostile to Kiev's new, pro-EU leaders, and home to magnates and police reluctant to face down the separatists. A military expert at the Razumkov think-tank in Kiev, Oleksiy Melnik, criticised the government for hesitating to use force and in the end sending in a smaller force than the one implied when it announced its "major operation" on Sunday. "The arguments that 'We mustn't provoke Russia' are absurd in the current situation, because Russia needs no pretext to carry out its plan.

  • CELLPHONE SNOOP DISCOVERS HER BOYFRIEND IS CHEATING

    DEAR ABBY: I have been in a long-distance relationship with "Victor" for several years. Recently I began to suspect he was cheating. What raised my suspicion was that I suddenly couldn't reach him on the weekends. Usually we would Skype -- Sunday night for me, Monday morning for him. Last February when I visited him, I snooped in his phone -- spare me the condemnation. I found an email he had written to an old girlfriend in which he suggested they plan their "next" rendezvous. I plan on dumping him, but I don't know how to go about it. I've always been bad at dumping people. ...

  • Machines Compete In Biggest Stacking Game You Have Ever Seen
    Machines Compete In Biggest Stacking Game You Have Ever Seen

    And you thought picking a block out of the Jenga tower with your in-laws watching was nerve-wracking. In a new ad campaign titled "Built For It," Caterpillar Inc. decided to supersize its own version of the popular game so it could show off the precision of its excavators. Game aficionados and fans of Cat's large machines can appreciate the excavators and telehandlers moving 27 blocks that weigh 600 pounds each!

Follow Yahoo! News