Nation / World

States Fail To Protect Abused Kids

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Butte, Montana — At least 786 children died of abuse or neglect in the U.S. in a six-year span in plain view of child protection authorities — many of them beaten, starved or left alone to drown while agencies had good reason to know they were in danger. To determine that number, The Associated Press canvassed the 50 states, the District of Columbia and branches of the military — circumventing …

Teen Drinking, Smoking Hit All-Time Lows

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The lure of drugs and binge drinking has loosened its grip on American youth, with the number of teens regularly using illegal substances plummeting from records posted in the 1990s. Alcohol use and cigarette smoking are at the lowest levels since 1975, the year that a survey involving more than 40,000 students in the eighth, 10th and 12th grades began. Demand for synthetic …

Report: U.S. Wealth Gap Widens

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Washington — The wealth gap between middle- and upper-income households has widened to the highest level on record, says a new report. Using the latest Federal Reserve data, the Pew Research Center said Wednesday that the median wealth for high-income families was $639,400 last year — up 7 percent from three years earlier on an inflation-adjusted basis. For middle-income families, the median wealth …

Days After Slamming U.S., China Admits It Also Tortures

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Days after strident criticism of the United States for “brutality” and “hypocrisy” over its treatment of terrorism suspects, China admitted Tuesday that it “has not been rare” for its own police to extort forced confessions from criminal suspects …

Study: Work Thwarts Sleep

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

More than one-third of American adults report getting less than seven hours of sleep on weekdays, and many of them try to sleep extralong on weekends to make up for it. This isn’t a particularly healthy way to live — insufficient sleep is associated with obesity, high blood …

Rough Treatment

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Newtown Families Sue Rifle Manufacturer, Distributor Families of nine Newtown, Conn., school shooting victims and one survivor have sued the companies that made, distributed and sold the rifle used to kill 20 children and six adults two years …

Study: E-cigarettes May Be Gateway

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Do e-cigarettes lure teens into a world of vice that turns them into smokers of regular cigarettes? This is the big fear of anti-smoking activists, and new data from Hawaii suggest they may be right. A survey of 1,941 ninth- and 10th-graders from Oahu found that 29 percent …

Court Sides With Police On Search

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Washington — The Supreme Court was forgiving of a police officer’s misunderstanding of the law Monday, ruling that it did not invalidate a traffic stop that led to a drug bust. The justices ruled 8 to 1 that a North Carolina officer made a reasonable mistake when he …

Senate Confirms President’s Nominee for Surgeon General

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Washington — The Senate confirmed President Obama’s controversial choice for surgeon general Monday, a victory for the administration after GOP infighting gave Democrats the upper hand in the final stretch of the lame-duck Congress. The 51-43 vote followed …

Gunman, 2 Others Killed in Australian Raid to Free Hostages

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

In a blitz-style assault early on Tuesday, Australian riot police ended a 16-hour hostage crisis as frightened captives rushed onto the streets amid intense gunfire that fatally wounded the self-styled Muslim cleric who held them. A police statement …

There Are Now Only 5 Northern White Rhinos Left in the World

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

San Diego — With the death of a northern white rhino at San Diego Zoo Safari Park, the species is now five animals away from extinction. The death of Angalifu, a 44-year-old male northern white rhino, leaves an …

Manhunt Continues in Pa. After 6 Die in Shooting Spree

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Philadelphia — An Iraq war veteran shot and killed his ex-wife and five of her relatives early Monday, terrorizing four communities in Montgomery County, Pa., and sparking a manhunt that continued deep into the night, officials said. The …

Bariatric Surgery as a Pill Takes a Step Forward in Obesity Fight

Monday, December 15, 2014

It is more of a glimmer of hope on the horizon than it is an actual drug right now. But an Indiana University lab has synthesized and fused a trio of gut hormones into a single agent and shown that obese rodents treated with the resulting molecule experience …