The St. Louis prosecutor who is investigating the couple who in June pointed guns at a group of people protesting racial injustice said Tuesday that Missouri's governor and President Donald Trump "came after" her for doing her job. St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner accused Gov. Mike Parson and Trump of playing politics, "spreading misinformation and distorting the truth" after Parson told reporters the president would be “getting involved” in the case Tuesday. Gardner noted that she hasn't decided whether to file charges against Mark and Patricia McCloskey, a white couple seen on video pointing guns at protesters outside their home in an upscale neighborhood.
After hours of emotional public testimony and a middle-of-the-night vote by Berkeley leaders, the progressive California city is moving forward with a novel proposal to replace police with unarmed civilians during traffic stops in a bid to curtail racial profiling. The City Council early Wednesday approved a police reform proposal that calls for a public committee to hash out details of a new Berkeley Police Department that would not respond to calls involving people experiencing homelessness or mental illness. The committee also would pursue creating a separate department to handle transportation planning and enforcing parking and traffic laws.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) revealed on Tuesday that he is attempting to declassify an FBI memo describing an interview with a crucial source for the Steele dossier, whose comments undermined the dossier's assertions. The source was dossier author Christopher Steele's only direct source inside Russia for many of the allegations included in the dossier. The Justice Department Inspector General report released in December 2019 noted that the individual, referred to as the “Primary Sub-Source,” has since disputed various claims in the dossier, including that Trump-campaign officials colluded with Russian operatives during the 2016 election.
Ghislaine Maxwell has secretly married but refused to disclose her husband's identity to FBI investigators, it was claimed in court. Federal prosecutors told a judge hearing Maxwell's application for bail that she had a spouse although his name has been withheld. The existence of a husband might explain why Maxwell chose to remain in the US while being hunted down by the FBI over child sex trafficking allegations rather than fleeing abroad.
US Navy A US Navy destroyer challenged China in the South China Sea with a freedom-of-navigation operation on Tuesday. The USS Ralph Johnson sailed near the disputed Spratly Islands, the Navy said, adding in a statement that "unlawful and sweeping maritime claims in the South China Sea pose a serious threat to the freedom of the seas." The operation, one of at least six such operations this year, comes after the US State Department officially rejected most of China's sea claims, declaring its maritime efforts to assert sovereignty unlawful.
Last month, a San Diego woman named Amber Gilles publicly shamed a Starbucks barista for refusing to serve her because she wasn't wearing a face mask. A GoFundMe campaign raised more than $100,000 in tips for the barista, Lenin Gutierrez. Now Gilles says she wants half of the money, telling KGTV she was the one who was "discriminated against."
A once obscure internet debate over the limits of free speech and the rise of what critics call “cancel culture” has, somewhat improbably, become a significant 2020 campaign issue. President Trump tapped into conservative worries about cancel culture — the notion that everyone from intellectuals to everyday citizens can be “canceled” and see their lives upended if they become the target of an online “mob” — in a July 3 speech at Mount Rushmore. Cancel culture, the president insisted, is “the very definition of totalitarianism.”
The Republican leader in the U.S. House of Representatives introduced legislation on Thursday that would cut federal aid to state and local governments if they do not protect statues, after protesters attacked monuments to people who owned slaves or fought for the Confederacy. "It is wrong to erase our history," House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said in a statement, criticizing "left-wing mobs" who have attacked statues across the United States. Under his bill, introduced with fellow Republican Representatives Jim Jordan and Sam Graves, some federal funds would be withheld if local governments do not "restore order or arrest rioters."
A week after the Supreme Court ruled President Donald Trump is not immune from turning over his tax returns and other financial records to the Manhattan district attorney, the president's legal team said in a Thursday hearing they intended to keep fighting the “wildly over-broad subpoena”—an argument slammed by prosecutors as a back-door attempt to create temporary “absolute immunity.” Federal Judge Victor Marrero—who originally presided over the case and denied the president's efforts to block Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance from subpoenaing eight years of Trump's tax returns last year—questioned both sides in a Thursday hearing about what has changed since his previous ruling.
The U.N. environment chief said Wednesday that “time is running out” to avert an environmental, economic and humanitarian catastrophe from a deteriorating oil tanker loaded with 1.1 million barrels of crude oil that is moored off the coast of Yemen. Inger Andersen told the U.N. Security Council that an oil spill from the FSO Safer, which hasn't been maintained for over five years, would wreck ecosystems and livelihoods for decades. Houthi rebels, who control the area where the ship is moored, have denied U.N. inspectors access to the vessel so they could assess the damage and look for ways to secure the tanker by unloading the oil and pulling the ship to safety.
Skywatchers are in for a treat over the next few weeks as newly discovered Comet Neowise is paying a visit to the inner solar system for the first time in 6,800 years. The comet has been getting brighter and brighter in the early morning sky, AccuWeather said, and in the coming days, it will make an appearance in the evening after sunset. Neowise is one of the few comets visible to the unaided eye this century, an inner-solar system "intruder" that might become known as the Great Comet of 2020, NASA said.
Ghislaine Maxwell appeared in Manhattan federal court via video feed on Tuesday, to plead not guilty regarding her alleged involvement in Jeffrey Epstein's sex trafficking of minor girls. One, in an anonymous statement read to the court, described “the sociopathic manner in which [Maxwell] nurtured our [relationships]” and said that “she would have done anything to get what she wanted, to satisfy Mr Epstein”. Long out of the public eye, Maxwell, 58, appeared unsettled, a far cry from the glamorous, jet-setting image she once cultivated.
Filip Radwanski/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images Hackers reportedly were given access to an internal tool from a Twitter employee that allowed them to conduct a massive hack on the social media platform on Wednesday, per a Motherboard report. A Twitter spokesperson told Motherboard that it's still unclear if the employee hacked the accounts using the tool or if they gave hackers access to it for them to do so. Twitter said in a tweet that the company believes the incident was a "coordinated social engineering attack," meaning bad actors exploited insiders at the company to carry out their scheme.
US Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced on July 6 that international students who were taking courses entirely online would not be allowed to remain in the US. The new policy was met with immediate backlash as 17 states and Washington, DC, filed a lawsuit to block the motion while Harvard and MIT led a similar suit that quickly garnered the support of 200 more universities. An international student told Insider that while she is happy about the rollback, she is still unsettled by the inconsistency of the Trump administration on potentially life-altering issues for students like her.
A Russian prankster posing as the U.N. secretary-general managed to reach Poland's president on the telephone and rendered him speechless with questions about Ukraine, Russia and his reelection on Sunday. The prankster, Vladimir Kuznetsov, known as Vovan, posted a recording of the 11-minute call on YouTube. President Andrzej Duda's office confirmed Wednesday that it was authentic.
Major law enforcement lobbying group throws weight behind President Trump.
China's envoy to Britain said on Wednesday that those who see China as a hostile state have got it all wrong and cautioned European Union states not to interfere in China's domestic affairs over Hong Kong. "Those who see China as systematic rival or as a potentially hostile state have got it all wrong - they have chosen the wrong target and they are heading in the wrong direction," Ambassador Liu Xiaoming told the Centre for European Reform. "China has never interfered in other countries' internal affairs and we strongly oppose interference in China's internal affairs by any country," he said, adding that the security law had been "warmly welcomed by Hong Kong residents".
Speaker Nancy Pelosi will delay or cancel Congress' August recess if negotiators need more time to reach a deal on a coronavirus relief package that is expected to include a renewal of beefed-up unemployment benefits and more federal assistance to state governments in order to address the Covid-19 pandemic. Cancelling the August recess would be a highly unusual move in an election year. Republican congressional leaders and White House economic advisers have increasingly signalled their willingness in recent weeks to engage Democrats on another coronavirus relief package, though the parties are still weeks away from a deal.
Nearly two months of nightly protests that have devolved into violent clashes with police have prompted soul-searching in Portland, Oregon, a city that prides itself on its progressive reputation but is increasingly polarized over how to handle the unrest. President Donald Trump recently deployed federal agents to “quell” the demonstrations in Portland that began after George Floyd's death at the hands of Minneapolis police, shining an unwelcome spotlight as the city struggles to find a way forward. The national attention comes as divisions deepen among elected officials about the legitimacy of the more violent protests — striking at the heart of Portland's identity as an ultraliberal haven where protest is seen as a badge of honor.
A Michigan jeweler is calling it quits after 23 years and taking prospective adventurers on a treasure hunt. Johnny Perri, who owns J&M Jewelers in Washington Township, Michigan, had an "epiphany" after being forced to shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. "Although I enjoyed being in business for myself and have been blessed serving our wonderful customers, I've discovered that I was never truly happy," Perri writes on the website set up for his "Treasure Quest."
William Marcus “Marc” Wilson believed he was standing his ground when he fired at a pickup truck he says was trying to run his car off the road as he drove home with his girlfriend one night last month. The pickup truck's driver then allegedly tried to run Wilson's much smaller Ford Focus off the road before, according to Johnson, Wilson “defended his life” by using a legally registered firearm to shoot at the truck.
A Marine master sergeant blasted his way into a building filled with at least eight Taliban fighters in an attempt to save an Afghan comrade during an hours-long fight in which he braved point-blank gunfire and grenade blasts, earning him the nation's third-highest valor award. The master sergeant was one of eight Marine Raiders recognized by Marine Forces Special Operations Command for their actions during the April 10, 2019, mission in southern Afghanistan. Three other Raiders -- a major and two staff sergeants -- were awarded Bronze Stars with combat "V" devices for their roles in the raid.
Carter Santini Arizona's governor was caught socializing at a party without wearing a mask or observing social distancing. Republican Gov. Doug Ducey reportedly attended the party last month before reversing his policy banning local governments from mandating mask-wearing, eventually telling Arizonans to "arm yourself with a mask." The Grand Canyon State is nearing 124,000 total COVID-19 cases, weathering over 3,000 new cases per day on a seven-day rolling average after their record was set at 4,797 on June 30.
The city council of Asheville, North Carolina, unanimously voted to provide reparations to Black residents and their descendants during a meeting on Tuesday. The resolution plans to provide reparations through helping Black communities with business ownership, housing ownership, and career opportunities. City council members told Insider that the resolution is a good first step toward reparations, but they still have a long way to go.