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Defense, prosecutors rest cases at hearing for 'Serial' podcast subject

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BALTIMORE -- Defense attorneys for Adnan Syed, the convicted murderer whose case was re-examined in the popular "Serial" podcast, and the Maryland attorney general's office rested their cases Monday in a hearing to determine whether he will get a new trial.

The two sides were expected to make final arguments Tuesday. It is not clear whether ...Read more

Casey Anthony sets up Florida photography business

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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Casey Anthony -- the Orlando woman acquitted in 2011 in the murder of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee -- has set up a West Palm Beach photography business in her name.

Anthony filed paperwork in November 2015 to form Case Photography LLC with a start date of Jan. 1 listed, according to a document from the Florida ...Read more

Murder suspect mistakenly released from LA County jail is captured in Nevada

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LOS ANGELES -- A murder suspect who has been on the lam since being mistakenly freed from jail in Los Angeles County has been caught in Boulder City, Nev., Sheriff's Department officials announced Monday.

Steven Lawrence Wright was arrested at a hotel Monday morning, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said in a statement. He will be ...Read more

Ted Cruz goes with tried-and-true closer: I heart New Hampshire

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MANCHESTER, N.H. -- Ted Cruz is exceedingly unlikely to win Tuesday's New Hampshire primary.

His undiluted ideology and appeal to the Christian conservative wing of the GOP are a poor fit for a state that tends to be more centrist and secular in its political leanings.

Still, the Texas senator and winner of the Iowa caucuses is competing in ...Read more

Obama will seek to double budgets for Wall Street regulators

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WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama will ask Congress to double funding for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission over the next five years, bolstering two financial regulators that the White House sees as integral to curbing Wall Street excesses.

Obama will propose the increases in the fiscal ...Read more

North Carolina leaders file appeal of congressional districts ruling

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- North Carolina leaders filed an emergency appeal Monday to overturn a federal court order that threw out the boundaries of two congressional districts and injected major uncertainty into the state's March 15 primary.

The motion was filed with the same three federal judges who found portions of the state voting map ...Read more

Why no one can predict what New Hampshire voters might do

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PELHAM, N.H. -- Don't even try to predict the outcome of Tuesday's New Hampshire primary.

No one can. The voters are too independent-minded, too contrarian. Stop them in the diners, shopping malls or while they're shoveling Monday's snow off their sidewalks and many will say they're still making up their minds.

Polls say a third to half of the...Read more

Nation and world news briefs

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White House seeks emergency funds to fight Zika

WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration will ask Congress for $1.8 billion in emergency funding to combat the Zika virus -- a disease that the president says is a cause for concern but not panic.

The White House announced the request to cover research and planning in the United States and abroad ...Read more

Adolescents should be screened for depression too, says federal panel

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Amid evidence that fewer than half of depressed adolescents get treatment for their emotional distress, a federal task force has recommended that physicians routinely screen children between 12 and 18 for depression and have systems in place either to diagnose, treat and monitor those who screen positive or to refer them to specialists who can. ...Read more

Washington state man accused of supporting Islamic State, illegally possessing weapons

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SEATTLE -- Federal agents with the Seattle Joint Terrorism Task Force have arrested an Army deserter and purported sympathizer of the Islamic State group for illegally possessing machine guns and other firearms.

Daniel Seth Franey, 33, was arrested during a Saturday raid at his home in Montesano, Wash., in Grays Harbor County. He is scheduled ...Read more

Analysis: In New Hampshire, candidates tread through old towns and new political turf

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MANCHESTER, N.H. -- The New Hampshire presidential primary, into which millions of dollars and campaign hours have been dumped, will play Tuesday on different political turf than was trod by candidates in the past.

Broad changes to the state's population -- and that new population's political views -- have made New Hampshire more willing to ...Read more

Zika virus funding met with caution in Congress

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WASHINGTON -- Capitol Hill leaders responded cautiously to President Barack Obama's announcement Monday that he would ask Congress to provide $1.8 million in emergency funding to bolster the response to the Zika virus.

Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell is set to brief Senate leaders and relevant committee ...Read more

Yellen to balance confidence with caution as risks muddy outlook

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WASHINGTON -- Janet Yellen is preparing to walk a tightrope.

When the Federal Reserve chair addresses lawmakers this week in Washington, she will have to strike a balance between sounding confident on the domestic economy and acknowledging increased risks from abroad. Two weeks after officials signaled interest rates may rise more slowly than ...Read more

Family of lead-poisoned Flint girl, 2, files lawsuit

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DETROIT -- The family of a 2-year-old girl who has tested positive for lead poisoning after drinking the tap water in her home has filed a lawsuit against the state of Michigan and Flint.

Luke Waid, the father of 2-year-old Sophia Rodriguez-Waid, said he is concerned about the consequences the lead will have on his daughter's brain development ...Read more

Michigan governor declines to testify at Flint hearing

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WASHINGTON -- The governor of Michigan has declined an invitation to testify at the second congressional hearing on the Flint water crisis, according to a statement released Monday by Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Mich.

Instead, Gov. Rick Snyder will spend Wednesday afternoon presenting his proposed state budget for the 2018 fiscal year in Lansing, a ...Read more

Scientists locate the part of the brain that controls sighs

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Your life depends on your ability to sigh.

Yes, we sigh when we're exhausted or stressed -- and when the weight of the world feels like too much to bear -- but it turns out that sighing is also an essential life-sustaining reflex that is necessary to keep our lungs from collapsing.

This week researchers from the University of California, Los ...Read more

White House seeks emergency funds to fight Zika

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WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration will ask Congress for $1.8 billion in emergency funding to combat the Zika virus -- a disease that the president says is a cause for concern but not panic.

The White House announced the request to cover research and planning in the United States and abroad minutes after CBS aired an interview with ...Read more

Sanders's Wall Street attacks strike home in New Hampshire town

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Five-dollar bills in the cash register at Tri-City Bicycles in Rochester, N.H., send customers a message stamped in red ink: "Not 2 B used 2 bribe politicians."

Owner Mark Traeger's frustration with what he calls a rigged economy has become a central theme in the Democratic presidential primary. Tri-City can't park profits overseas to dodge ...Read more

Crowded presidential race could strain Secret Service budget

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WASHINGTON -- The Secret Service is always busy in election years, but the 2016 presidential race could pose a bigger challenge than usual for the agency in charge of guarding candidates vying for their party's nomination. There are four under Secret Service protection already, and the pack could grow.

Last week, Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., a ...Read more

Fighting mosquitoes with mosquitoes: Biological weapons target Zika virus

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JOHANNESBURG -- As mosquitoes buzzed about on her veranda one recent evening, Maureen Coetzee didn't reach for bug spray or a swatter. She dashed inside, grabbed a device resembling a drinking straw and sucked four mosquitoes into a specimen jar.

She quickly identified them as Aedes aegypti, the villain in the Zika crisis a continent away.

The...Read more