August 4, 2023
Ukraine says its drones damaged a Russian warship, showing Kyiv’s growing naval capability
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine says its sea drones have struck a major Russian port and damaged a warship in an attack that underlined Kyiv’s growing capabilities as the Black Sea becomes an increasingly important battleground in the war. The strike on Novorossiysk marks the first time a commercial Russian port has been targeted in the nearly 18-month-old conflict. The Black Sea port hosts a naval base, shipbuilding yards and an oil terminal and is key for exports. It lies about 110 kilometers east of Crimea, where Russia’s Defense Ministry said it thwarted another attack overnight.
After 27 years, authorities identify woman whose remains were found along Gilgo Beach parkway
HAUPPAUGE, N.Y. (AP) — Authorities say a woman whose remains were among discoveries that became known as the Gilgo Beach killings has been identified after 27 years. Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond Tierney announced Friday that she was 34-year-old Karen Vergata. She had previously been known to the public as “Jane Doe No. 7.” She disappeared around Valentine’s Day 1996 and was living in Manhattan. Some of her remains were first discovered in 1996 on Fire Island. More of her bones were later found near Gilgo Beach in 2011.
Alabama authorities charge Carlee Russell for fabricating story about kidnapping, finding toddler
ATLANTA (AP) — Authorities in Alabama say they have filed criminal charges against a woman who confessed to fabricating a story that she was kidnapped after stopping to check on a toddler she saw walking on the side of the interstate. Carlee Russell turned herself in Friday on charges of false reporting to law enforcement and falsely reporting an incident. She was released on bond. Both charges are misdemeanors that carry up to a year in jail. Russell disappeared after calling 911 on July 13 to report a toddler wandering beside a stretch of interstate. She returned home two days later and told police she had been abducted. Her attorney later said she made the story up.
Kremlin critic Navalny convicted of extremism and sentenced to 19 years in prison
MELEKHOVO, Russia (AP) — A Russian court has convicted imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny of extremism charges and sentenced him to 19 years in prison. Navalny is already serving a nine-year term on a variety of charges that he says were politically motivated. The extremism charges are related to the activities of Navalny’s anti-corruption foundation and statements by his top associates. The 47-year-old Navalny is President Vladimir Putin’s fiercest foe. He has exposed official corruption and organized major anti-Kremlin protests. He was arrested in January 2021 upon returning to Moscow after recuperating in Germany from nerve agent poisoning. He blamed that poisoning on the Kremlin, which denied involvement.
No AP Psychology credit for Florida students after clash over teaching about gender
MIAMI (AP) — The College Board says schools in Florida should not offer its Advanced Placement course in psychology to students, citing guidance from state officials to exclude content on sexual orientation and gender identity. The call to shelve the course marks the College Board’s latest clash with the administration of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican who has pushed to regulate how schools deal with subjects such as race and gender. Florida’s Department of Education rejected the assertion that it had banned the course. Under an expanded Florida law, lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity are banned in most cases.
Fewer Americans got jobs in July than expected. But a steady market suggests US may avoid recession
WASHINGTON (AP) — The job market has cooled over the summer. But it’s still strong enough to defy predictions that higher interest rates would tip the United States into recession. U.S. employers added 187,000 jobs last month, fewer than expected, as the higher interest rates continued to weigh on the economy. But the unemployment rate dipped to 3.5% in a sign that the job market remains resilient. Hiring was up from 185,000 in June, a figure that the Labor Department revised down from an originally reported 209,000. Economists had expected to see 200,000 new jobs in July.
Big Ten clears way for Oregon, Washington to join, AP sources say, putting Pac-12 on brink
The Big Ten has cleared the way for Oregon and Washington to apply for membership and join the conference, according to four people familiar with the negotiations. The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the conference and the schools in the Pacific Northwest were finalizing an official agreement and announcement. The Ducks and Huskies still must officially apply for membership and the Big Ten presidents need to officially approve any moves. When that’s done, they would become the 17th and 18th members of the Big Ten, and the third and fourth on the West Coast.