WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department is taking new aim at ransomware after a year that officials say was the costliest on record for the crippling cyberattacks.
Garland announces sweeping police probe after Floyd verdict
NEW YORK (AP) — When the verdicts came in — Guilty, Guilty, Guilty — Lucia Edmonds let out the breath she hadn't even realized she'd been holding.
JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) — Gov. Kim Reynolds implored Iowans on Wednesday to get vaccinated for COVID-19, however she refused to acknowledge that slowing demand for the shots is greatest in Republican parts of the state or that there's a political aspect to the trend.
FOSHAN, China (AP) _ Bright Scholar Education Holdings Ltd. (BEDU) on Wednesday reported a fiscal second-quarter loss of $7 million, after reporting a profit in the same period a year earlier.
The Foshan, China-based company said it had a loss of 6 cents per share. Losses, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were 5 cents per share.
The provider of international education to Chinese students posted revenue of $125 million in the period.
TUPELO, Miss. (AP) _ BancorpSouth Bank (BXS) on Wednesday reported first-quarter earnings of $81.6 million.
The bank, based in Tupelo, Mississippi, said it had earnings of 77 cents per share. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring gains, were 73 cents per share.
The results exceeded Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 64 cents per share.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — First lady Jill Biden has kicked off a three day visit to the U.S. Southwest on Wednesday with a tour of a vaccination clinic in New Mexico, where early efforts to get people registered for shots helped to propel the state's standing as a national leader in vaccine distribution.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan says the state is stepping up efforts to get people vaccinated against the coronavirus.
The governor said Wednesday that the “No Arm Left Behind” initiative will involve all state agencies and a variety of private companies.
Hogan says Maryland has administered more than 4 million vaccine doses. He says 82% of Maryland residents older than 65 have been vaccinated and more than 55% of people over 18 have been vaccinated.
NEW YORK (AP) — A transformed Penn Station would replace windowless concourses and dingy, cramped corridors with light-filled spaces and easier access to an improved streetscape, under plans revealed Wednesday by Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the area’s major transit agencies.
PHOENIX (AP) — Officials in Arizona's most populous county started delivering equipment used in the November election won by President Joe Biden to the state fairgrounds on Wednesday. They plan to cart 2.1 million ballots to the site Thursday so Republicans in the state Senate who have question whether Biden's victory was legitimate can recount them and audit the results.
The delivery will kick off weeks of counting by contractors hired by the Republican-controlled Senate at the rented site.
MADRID (AP) — Representatives of 22 countries from Latin America and Europe’s Iberian Peninsula, in their first, mostly virtual meeting since the pandemic started, called for more equitable access to coronavirus vaccines and flexible funding for their economic recovery.
Frictions emerged over the participation of Venezuela's government in the Iberoamerican Summit hosted Wednesday by the tiny mountainous nation of Andorra, which lies between Spain and France in the Pyrenees mountain range.
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) — Public school students in East St. Louis will be attending class a month longer this year to make up for a loss in educational progress due to COVID-19.
East St. Louis School District 189 board voted late Tuesday to extend the school year by nearly a month. Instead of ending the school year on May 26, the last day of school will arrive June 29.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Body camera footage from other officers released Wednesday in the fatal police shooting of Ma’Khia Bryant, a Black teenager who charged at two people with a knife, showed a chaotic scene that happened within minutes of the verdict in George Floyd’s killing and ignited outrage by many over the continued use of lethal force by police in Columbus and the U.S.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's governor wants a former lawmaker who spent a year as the state's top federal prosecutor to lead the board that runs state-owned utility Santee Cooper.
Peter McCoy said Wednesday that his two goals if he becomes Santee Cooper board chairman are to improve the utility's relationship with the General Assembly and to be open and transparent to ratepayers and the taxpayers of South Carolina.
AURORA, Ill. (AP) _ Old Second Bancorp Inc. (OSBC) on Wednesday reported first-quarter net income of $11.9 million.
The bank, based in Aurora, Illinois, said it had earnings of 40 cents per share. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring gains, were 29 cents per share.
The results topped Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of four analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 26 cents per share.
ROME (AP) — Italian media say a 28-year-old Albanian wanted in connection with a 2016 truck attack in the French city of Nice that killed 86 people has been arrested in southern Italy.
News agency LaPresse said police arrested the suspect, identified as Endri Elenzi, on Wednesday in Sparanise about 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of Naples.
Elenzi was wanted on a European arrest warrant issued by France for allegedly having provided arms to the attacker, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, Lapresse said.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas lawmakers on Wednesday voted to expand the state's new ban on transgender girls and women competing on school sports teams consistent with their gender identity.
The House voted 74-17 to authorize the attorney general to sue schools that violate the ban. The measure now heads to Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson.
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Lawyers helping the New York Assembly investigate whether Gov. Andrew should be impeached have received more than 200 tips and spoken with attorneys for about 70 people and four government agencies, a lawmaker overseeing the probe said Wednesday.
Speaking at a legislative hearing, Assembly Judiciary Committee Chair Charles Lavine provided his first public update in nearly a month on the progress of the investigation.
AVONDALE, La. (AP) — Tony Finau is among the PGA Tour players primed to take some unusual risks and big swings this week.
The tour is back in New Orleans with the Zurich Classic's two-man team format being held for the first time since 2019.
The NHL on Wednesday confirmed it has not guaranteed loosened virus protocols for players who are vaccinated after Vegas goaltender Robin Lehner ripped the league for what he said were unkept promises.
“Nobody from the league has communicated to any player or club that any of our COVID protocols would be ‘relaxed’ for any player once he is vaccinated,” a league spokesman said.
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Transgender girls would be banned from playing on girls' sports teams under a bill that advanced Wednesday in the Missouri House.
House lawmakers voted 100-51 to add the provision to another bill, sidestepping the more-typical process that requires approval from several committees.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Pain left from oil-field work defeated traditional pain pills and dominated William Adams’ life — until he tried medical cannabis. But even as he began venturing outside his home for the first time in years, Adams discovered he couldn't afford the cost.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A conservative radio host in Omaha was fired Wednesday after he posted a social media comment criticized as racist minutes after the conviction of a white former Minneapolis police officer for the killing last year of a Black man.
KFAB afternoon radio host Chris Baker posted a since-deleted tweet Tuesday evening in which he wrote “Guilty!” above an image of what appeared to be four older Black men in body paint and loincloths dancing around a pole.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A $75 billion state budget containing a 2% personal income tax cut and an overhaul of the state's system for funding schools cleared the Ohio House on Wednesday.
The massive spending blueprint lays out spending for state programs for the two years beginning July 1. It must next clear the Ohio Senate, where hearings have already begun.
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Roman Catholic institutions including schools and universities closed Wednesday across Haiti in a three-day protest to demand the release of five priests, two nuns and two other people kidnapped more than a week ago amid a spike in violence that the government is struggling to control.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Democratic-led House passed legislation Wednesday designed to constrain a president’s power to limit entry to the U.S., a response to former President Donald Trump’s travel ban covering five Muslim-majority countries.
HONOLULU (AP) — Vintage Love's Bakery aloha shirts, signs, equipment, leftover ingredients and some baked goods are being auctioned off after the closure of the state's oldest and largest commercial bakery.
Hawaii News Now reported Oahu Auctions has opened online bidding for the items. The auction will take place in multiple phases, with the first phase ending on Saturday.
DENVER (AP) — Colorado lawmakers are considering a bill that would add “gender identity” and “gender expression” to anti-discrimination statutes as state lawmakers across the country are introducing bills aimed at curbing transgender rights.
There are 21 states with full nondiscrimination protections that include gender identity, according to the National Center for Transgender Equality, a nonprofit that advocates for policies that promote understanding and acceptance of transgender people.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana public school and teachers groups are cheering the education funding increase included in the new state budget plan that’s poised for final approval from lawmakers on Thursday to complete this year’s regular legislative session.
BOSTON (AP) — It’s not just urban dwellers who have faced difficulties paying the rent during the past year as the pandemic upended the economy.
Renters in rural New England have faced many of the same affordability challenges, according to a report released Wednesday by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston’s New England Public Policy Center.
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — For the first time, prominent Republican state senators on Wednesday put their support behind legislation in Pennsylvania to change the law to allow now-adult victims of child sexual abuse to sue the perpetrators or institutions that did not prevent it when it happened years or decades ago.
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A company is withdrawing from more than two years of discussions about taking over management of the zoo in Mississippi's capital city.
Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba announced in 2019 that he wanted ZoOceanarium Group to operate the Jackson Zoological Park, but the City Council had not yet approved a contract.
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is facing calls to recognize the Armenian genocide of more than a century ago, something he pledged to do as a candidate but that could further complicate an already tense relationship with Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Technology companies and banks helped lift stocks on Wall Street broadly higher Wednesday, enabling the market to claw back some of its losses after a downbeat start to the week.
MOSCOW (AP) — Police arrested nearly 1,500 people Wednesday during a day of demonstrations throughout Russia calling for freedom for imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny, whose health reportedly is in severe decline after three weeks of hunger striking, according to a group that monitors political detentions.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — A Canadian judge has granted Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou’s request to delay the final leg in her extradition hearings, days before they were set to begin.
British Columbia Supreme Court Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes said Wednesday she will deliver reasons for her decision in writing in the next week or so and a date to resume proceedings will be determined later.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The U.S. Interior Department is cancelling oil and gas lease sales from public lands through June amid an ongoing review of how the program contributes to climate change, officials said Wednesday.
The action does not affect existing leases, and the agency has continued to issue new drilling permits during the open-ended review ordered by the White House, said Nada Culver, deputy director of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.
NEW YORK (AP) — Greta Thunberg turned 18 in January, but she’s already made peace with her future: While most college students will change their concentrations multiple times, the Swedish high school student says climate change activism will be her life’s mission.
As she watched a broadcast of the verdict in the murder trial of the police officer charged with killing George Floyd with her last-period class, middle school teacher Diana Garcia-Allen did her best to stifle her own emotions and keep from crying. She sensed a sadness mirrored in her students.
“I don’t think until that moment they felt the weight of it,” she said.
Independent music venues continue to struggle financially to survive while in the midst of Maryland’s lifted pandemic restrictions and vaccine accessibility.
Tecla Tesnau, owner of Baltimore’s indie-rock club Ottobar, said she remembers when she thought the pandemic was only going to last two weeks.
“It was all of a sudden, we just ran into this crazy brick wall of COVID,” Tesnau said. “We effectively went from a very successful business to zero business.”
The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:
Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner railed against the National Hockey League on Wednesday, saying the league indicated it would relax coronavirus protocols for teams that reached a certain vaccination threshold and then changed course.
NFL owners on Wednesday approved eliminating overtime in preseason games and expanded selection of jersey numbers for receivers, running backs and defensive backs.
The league also will allow on-field officials to get certain “objective information” from the replay official and designated members of the officiating department “when clear and obvious video evidence is present.”
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The already short-handed Indiana Pacers will play Oklahoma City on Wednesday night without forward JaKarr Sampson after the NBA announced he would serve a one-game suspension following his ejection during Monday's loss to San Antonio.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Grizzly bears are part of life in the gateway communities bordering Yellowstone National Park, and backcountry snowmobile guide Charles “Carl” Mock knew well the risks that come with working, hiking and fishing among the fear-inspiring carnivores, his friends said.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Anthony Davis' right leg became too painful to play on two months ago, the big man and the Los Angeles Lakers decided he wouldn't return until he was completely ready to be himself again.
More than two months later, Davis is confident that time has arrived with 14 regular-season games left in the Lakers' push to defend their NBA title.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Florida House resoundingly approved a consumer privacy bill on Wednesday, giving the public an opportunity to regain ownership of the personal data collected by companies and the right to sue companies for mishandling information in a marketplace where consumers themselves have become lucrative commodities.
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The Republican-dominated House on Wednesday voted to override GOP Gov. Brad Little’s veto of a measure seeking to curb a governor’s power to respond to emergencies like the coronavirus pandemic.
Lawmakers voted 48-19 to attain the two-thirds threshold needed to override the veto and send the measure to the Senate.
The Baltimore factory hired to help make Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine was dirty, didn’t follow proper manufacturing procedures and had poorly trained staff, resulting in contamination of material going into a batch of shots, U.S. regulators said Wednesday.
The Food and Drug Administration released a statement and a 13-page report detailing findings from its just-completed inspection of the idled Emergent BioSciences factory.