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Nation / World

Court tosses conviction in Massachusetts killing

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

BOSTON — The highest court in Massachusetts on Tuesday overturned a first-degree murder conviction against a Boston man who stabbed his girlfriend to death, finding that jurors were given faulty instructions on how they could consider his use of alcohol the night of the killing. The Supreme Judicial Court vacated the conviction of Mario Gonzalez and sent the case back to a lower court so prosecutors can either reduce his … 0

Interim schools chief seeks to keep steady course, foster communication

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

BELCHERTOWN — Continuity will be a goal for the upcoming school year as the district adjusts to an interim educational leader while the School Committee resumes its search for a permanent superintendent. Robert Gazda, who is taking a semester off as an adjunct faculty at Westfield State University to lead the Belchertown schools … 0

New leadership, college-credit classes in the mix at Smith Voke

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — New administrators, new classes and new animals are just some of the changes that will greet Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School students in September. “Next year is going to be a very, very exciting year for us,” said Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson during a mid-summer interview in his office. New school … 0

Obama: Iraq forces retake Mosul Dam

Monday, August 18, 2014

BAGHDAD — Iraqi and Kurdish forces recaptured Iraq’s largest dam from Islamic militants Monday following dozens of U.S. airstrikes, President Barack Obama said, in the first major defeat for the extremists since they swept across the country this … 0

Former Amherst teacher Ronald Garney may keep retirement benefits despite child pornography conviction

Monday, August 18, 2014

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled Monday that a former high school teacher in Amherst convicted of child pornography charges can keep his retirement benefits. The court ruled that Ronald T. Garney should still receive benefits … 0

Priest, 93, saved after falling into lake in wheelchair

Sunday, August 17, 2014

A retired 93-year old priest fell into Monroe Harbor in his wheelchair this afternoon after he and his caretaker were distracted by the Chicago Air and Water Show, officials said. The man was pulled from Lake Michigan near the Chicago Yacht Club by good samaritans who were in … 0

Woman climbs into giraffe pen, is cited

Sunday, August 17, 2014

MADISON, Wis. — Police say a California woman was cited after climbing into the giraffe exhibit at a Madison zoo and getting kicked in the face. A police report says 24-year-old Amanda Hall, of San Luis Obispo, California, climbed over one fence and almost got over the second … 0

Orthodox Jew sues hospital for cremating amputated leg

Sunday, August 17, 2014

CHICAGO — An Orthodox Jew whose religious traditions suggest that the deceased should be buried whole in preparation for the afterlife is suing Skokie (Ill.) Hospital for cremating his amputated leg instead of preserving the limb to be buried next to him. Moshe Lefkowitz, 43, alleges in court … 0

Elderly man crashes his car into pool

Sunday, August 17, 2014

ALTADENA, Calif. (AP) — An 85-year-old man was unharmed Saturday after he crashed his car into a backyard pool, authorities said. Officers responded around 11:45 a.m. to a report in Altadena of a car crashing into a pool in the 2700 block of Scripps Place, the Los Angeles … 0

Ukraine says its troops entered rebel-held city

Sunday, August 17, 2014

KIEV, Ukraine — Army troops have penetrated deep inside a rebel-controlled city in eastern Ukraine in what could prove a breakthrough development in the four-month-long conflict, the Ukrainian government said Sunday. However, the military acknowledged that another one … 0

Forces retake parts of Iraq’s largest dam from militants

Sunday, August 17, 2014

IRBIL, Iraq — Aided by U.S. and Iraqi airstrikes, Kurdish forces Sunday wrested back part of Iraq’s largest dam from Islamic militants who had captured it less than two weeks ago, security officials said. The U.S. began targeting … 0

Pope Francis tries to warm chilly relations with China

Sunday, August 17, 2014

HAEMI, South Korea — Pope Francis made his strongest gesture yet to reach out to China, saying Sunday he wants to improve relations and insisting that the Catholic Church isn’t coming in as a “conqueror” but is rather … 0

35 people found trapped in shipping container at British port; one dies

Sunday, August 17, 2014

British police report finding 35 people trapped inside a shipping container at a port near London Saturday, including a man pronounced dead at the scene. The others, believed to be from South Asia, were taken to a hospital for treatment. The victims, who included women and children, were … 0