10 charged in Irvo Otieno’s death at mental hospital
DINWIDDIE, Va. (AP) — Video from a state mental hospital shows a Black Virginia man who was handcuffed and shackled being pinned to the ground by deputies who are now facing second-degree murder charges in his death, according to relatives of the man and their attorneys who viewed the footage Thursday.
Speaking at a news conference shortly after watching the video with a local prosecutor, the family and attorneys condemned the brutal treatment they said Irvo Otieno, 28, was subjected to, first at a local jail and then at the state hospital where authorities say he died March 6 during the admission process.
They called on the U.S. Department of Justice to intervene in the case, saying Otieno's constitutional rights were clearly violated.
“What I saw today was heartbreaking, America. It was disturbing. It was traumatic. My son was tortured," said Otieno's mother, Caroline Ouko.
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Otieno's case marks the latest example of a Black man's in-custody death that has law enforcement under scrutiny. It follows the the fatal beating of Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee, earlier this year and comes nearly three years after the killing of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis.
Pentagon video shows Russian jet dumping fuel on US drone
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The Biden administration released video Thursday of a Russian fighter jet dumping fuel on a U.S. Air Force surveillance drone as the U.S. sought to hold Russia responsible for the collision that led to the drone's crash into the Black Sea without escalating already fraught tensions with the Kremlin.
Poland, meanwhile, said it's giving Ukraine a dozen MiG-29 fighter jets, becoming the first NATO member to fulfill Kyiv's increasingly urgent requests for warplanes.
The U.S. military's declassified 42-second color footage shows a Russian Su-27 approaching the back of the MQ-9 Reaper drone and releasing fuel as it passes, the Pentagon said. Dumping the fuel appeared to be aimed at blinding the drone's optical instruments to drive it from the area.
On a second approach, either the same jet or another Russian Su-27 that had been shadowing the MQ-9 struck the drone’s propeller, damaging a blade, according to the U.S. military, which said it then ditched the aircraft in the sea.
The video excerpt does not show the collision, although it does show the damage to the propeller.
France's Macron risks his government to raise retirement age
PARIS (AP) — French President Emmanuel Macron ordered his prime minister to wield a special constitutional power Thursday that skirts parliament to force through a highly unpopular bill raising the retirement age from 62 to 64 without a vote.
His calculated risk set off a clamor among lawmakers, who began singing the national anthem even before Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne arrived in the lower chamber. She spoke forcefully over their shouts, acknowledging that Macron's unilateral move will trigger quick motions of no-confidence in his government.
The fury of opposition lawmakers echoed the anger of citizens and workers' unions. Thousands gathered at the Place de la Concorde facing the National Assembly, lighting a bonfire. As night fell, police charged the demonstrators in waves to clear the elegant Place. Small groups of those chased away moved through nearby streets in the chic neighborhood setting street fires. At least 120 were detained, police said.
Similar scenes repeated themselves in numerous other cities, from Rennes and Nantes in the east to Lyon and the southern port city of Marseille, where shop windows and bank fronts were smashed, according to French media. Radical leftist groups were blamed for at least some of the destruction.
The unions that have organized strikes and marches since January, leaving Paris reeking in piles of garbage, announced new rallies and protest marches in the days ahead. “This retirement reform is brutal, unjust, unjustified for the world of workers,” they declared.
20 years after U.S. invasion, young Iraqis see signs of hope
BAGHDAD (AP) — On the banks of the Tigris River one recent evening, young Iraqi men and women in jeans and sneakers danced with joyous abandon to a local rap star as a vermillion sun set behind them. It’s a world away from the terror that followed the U.S. invasion 20 years ago.
Iraq 's capital today is throbbing with life and a sense of renewal, its residents enjoying a rare, peaceful interlude in a painful modern history. The wooden stalls of the city’s open-air book market are piled skyward with dusty paperbacks and crammed with shoppers of all ages and incomes. In a suburb once a hotbed of al-Qaida, affluent young men cruise their muscle cars, while a recreational cycling club hosts weekly biking trips to former war zones. A few glitzy buildings sparkle where bombs once fell.
President George W. Bush called the U.S.-led invasion on March 20, 2003, a mission to free the Iraqi people and root out weapons of mass destruction. Saddam Hussein's government was toppled in 26 days. Two years later, the CIA’s chief weapons inspector reported no stockpiles of nuclear, chemical or biological weapons were ever found.
The war deposed a dictator whose imprisonment, torture and execution of dissenters kept 20 million people in fear for a quarter of a century. But it also broke what had been a unified state at the heart of the Arab world, opening a power vacuum and leaving oil-rich Iraq a wounded nation in the Middle East, ripe for a power struggle among Iran, Arab Gulf states, the United States, terrorist groups and Iraq’s own rival sects and parties.
For Iraqis, the enduring trauma of the violence that followed is undeniable — an estimated 300,000 Iraqis were killed between 2003 and 2019, according to the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University, as were more than 8,000 U.S. military, contractors and civilians. The period was marred by unemployment, dislocation, sectarian violence and terrorism, and years without reliable electricity or other public services.
Yellen declares bank system sound, as new rescues ordered
WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen offered firm, upbeat reassurances to rattled bank depositors and investors Thursday, even as American financial institutions and European agencies ordered fresh rescue efforts following the second-largest bank collapse in U.S. history.
Questioned closely, sometimes aggressively, Yellen told senators at a Capitol hearing that the U.S. banking system “remains sound” and Americans “can feel confident” about the safety of their deposits.
Her remarks, against the backdrop of deepening concerns about the health of the global financial system, were an effort to signal to markets that there would be no broader contagion from the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in California and Signature Bank in New York.
By the time her testimony was over, another major institution, First Republic Bank, received an emergency infusion of $30 billion in deposits from 11 banks, according to Treasury. And in Europe hours earlier, Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second-largest lender, got a promise from the Swiss central bank of a loan of up to 50 billion francs ($54 billion).
Wall Street rallied on the rescue news.
Waste pickers collect food waste, help combat climate change
MALABON, Philippines (AP) — Marilene Capentes pushes a cart along the streets of Malabon city just north of Manila every morning except Sundays, collecting bags of segregated garbage.
She places the food waste in a designated container so it can be turned to compost at the local recycling facility. The rest of the waste goes into separate containers and the recyclables are later sold.
Capentes, who is 47, said the trash used to be all mixed together — and heavy — until a local environmental nonprofit started asking residents to separate it a few years ago. The Mother Earth Foundation in the Philippines, as a member of the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives, is trying to prevent food waste from going to landfills, where it emits methane as it breaks down and rots. Methane is an extraordinarily powerful greenhouse gas responsible for about 30% of today’s global warming.
Along Capentes' route, 50-year-old resident Vilma Mendoza now understands the importance of diverting organic waste from landfills to reduce methane emissions to try to limit future warming.
"If you mixed biodegradable to the non-biodegradable and throw it in the landfill, our environment will suffer,” she said.
Review: U2 reworks past in thrilling 'Songs of Surrender'
“Songs of Surrender,” U2 (Universal)
Imagine walking into your living room and all your stuff is there, but it's different. The sofa has moved, the bookcase is leaning on a different wall and the framed photos have swapped locations. That's the feeling you get listening to U2's new album.
“Songs of Surrender” is a “reimagining” of 40 songs from the Irish quartet's deep catalogue, cleverly presented from “One” to “40.” Think of it as a thrilling home makeover.
“I want to tear down the walls that hold me inside,” Bono sings in the new “Where the Streets Have No Name” — lyrics that perfectly fit this sonic experiment. This version of the song is virtually unrecognizable from the one the band made famous in 1987.
That's the point of this exercise led by Bono and The Edge. “Once we surrendered our reverence for the original version, each song started to open up to a new authentic voice of this time,” The Edge writes in the liner notes.
BNSF trains derail in Washington, Arizona; no injuries
ANACORTES, Wash. (AP) — Two BNSF trains derailed in separate incidents in Arizona and Washington state on Thursday, with the latter spilling diesel fuel on tribal land along Puget Sound.
No injuries were reported. It wasn't clear what caused either derailment.
The derailment in Washington occurred on a berm along Padilla Bay, on the Swinomish tribal reservation near Anacortes. Most of 5,000 gallons (nearly 19,000 liters) of spilled diesel fuel leaked on the land side of the berm rather than toward the water, according to the state Ecology Department.
Officials said there were no indications the spill reached the water or affected any wildlife.
Responders placed a boom along the shoreline as a precaution and removed the remaining fuel from two locomotives that derailed. Four tank cars remained upright.
California to overhaul San Quentin prison, emphasizing rehab
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The infamous state prison on San Francisco Bay that has been home to the largest death row population in the United States will be transformed into a lockup where less-dangerous prisoners will receive education, training and rehabilitation, California officials announced Thursday.
The inmates serving death sentences at San Quentin State Prison will be moved elsewhere in the California penitentiary system, Gov. Gavin Newsom's office announced, and it will be renamed the San Quentin Rehabilitation Center. Most of California's nearly 700 inmates facing such sentences are imprisoned at the facility, though some have already been moved.
“Today, we take the next step in our pursuit of true rehabilitation, justice, and safer communities through this evidenced-backed investment, creating a new model for safety and justice — the California Model — that will lead the nation,” Newsom said in a statement.
The governor planned a visit Friday to San Quentin, which is also the California location where prisoners were once executed, though none have been put to death since 2006. Newsom announced a moratorium on executions in 2019 and dismantled the prison's gas chamber, and in 2022 he announced plans to begin transferring inmates sentenced to death to other prisons.
Full details of the plan were not immediately made public, though officials said the facility would concentrate on “education, rehabilitation and breaking cycles of crime.” Newsom was expected to share more during his visit, the second stop on a four-day policy tour that he's doing in lieu of a traditional State of the State address this year.
Henderson, Princeton stun Arizona 59-55 in NCAA Tournament
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Mitch Henderson’s victory leap that punctuated Princeton’s famed upset over UCLA in 1996 has become an iconic moment. There is a picture of the joyous jump at the school’s practice facility that serves as a constant reminder of what’s possible.
Now Henderson’s current players have authored one of their own.
Ryan Langborg lifted Princeton to its first lead with 2:03 to play and the Tigers used a late-game run to earn their first NCAA Tournament win in 25 years, topping No. 2 seed Arizona 59-55 on Thursday.
“Pretty surreal feeling,” guard Matt Allocco said. “To beat a great team like that on this stage is a pretty special feeling. But also I can’t say I’m surprised. This team has been so good all year, so gritty. On paper, it’s going to look like a big upset. But we believe in each other and we think we’re a really good team. When we’re at our best, then I think we can beat anybody in the country.”
The 15th-seeded Tigers (22-9) scored the final nine points, holding the Pac-12 Tournament champion scoreless over the final 4:43.