AP News in Brief 04-14-19

  • An endangered cassowary roams in the Daintree National Forest, Australia on June 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Wilson Ring, File)

Large, flightless bird attacks and kills its fallen owner

ALACHUA, Fla. — A large, flightless bird native to Australia and New Guinea attacked and killed its owner when the man fell on his property in Florida, authorities said Saturday.

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The Alachua County Fire Rescue Department told the Gainesville Sun that a cassowary killed the man Friday on the property near Gainesville, likely using its long claws. The victim, whose name was not released, was apparently breeding the birds, state wildlife officials said.

“It looks like it was accidental. My understanding is that the gentleman was in the vicinity of the bird and at some point fell. When he fell, he was attacked,” Deputy Chief Jeff Taylor told the newspaper.

Cassowaries are similar to emus and stand up to 6 feet tall and weigh up to 130 pounds, with black body feathers and bright blue heads and necks.

The San Diego Zoo’s website calls cassowaries the world’s most dangerous bird with a 4-inch, dagger-like claw on each foot.

Trump sanctuary city idea could help migrants stay in US

PHOENIX — An idea floated by President Donald Trump to send immigrants from the border to “sanctuary cities” to exact revenge on Democratic foes could end up doing the migrants a favor by placing them in locations that make it easier to put down roots and stay in the country.

The plan would put thousands of immigrants in cities that are not only welcoming to them, but also more likely to rebuff federal officials carrying out deportation orders. Many of these locations have more resources to help immigrants make their legal cases to stay in the United States than smaller cities, with some of the nation’s biggest immigration advocacy groups based in places like San Francisco, New York City and Chicago. The downside for the immigrants would be a high cost of living in the cities.

The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University announced this week that an analysis found that immigrants in sanctuary cities such as New York and Los Angeles are 20 percent less likely to be arrested out in the community than in cities without such policies.

“With immigrants being less likely to commit crimes than the U.S. born population, and with sanctuary jurisdictions being safer and more productive than non-sanctuary jurisdictions, the data damns this proposal as a politically motivated stunt that seeks to play politics with peoples’ lives,” said George Gascon, district attorney for San Francisco.

Pace of Bering Sea changes startles scientists

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The Yupik Eskimo village of Kotlik on Alaska’s northwest coast relies on a cold, hard blanket of sea ice to protect homes from vicious winter Bering Sea storms.

Frigid north winds blow down from the Arctic Ocean, freeze saltwater and push sea ice south. The ice normally prevents waves from forming and locks onto beaches, walling off villages. But not this year.

In February, southwest winds brought warm air and turned thin sea ice into “snow cone ice” that melted or blew off. When a storm pounded Norton Sound, water on Feb. 12 surged up the Yukon River and into Kotlik, flooding low-lying homes. Lifelong resident Philomena Keyes, 37, awoke to knee-deep water outside her house.

From wire sources

“This is the first I experienced in my life, a flood that happened in the winter, in February,” Keyes said in a phone interview.

Winter storm surge flooding is the latest indication that something’s off-kilter around the Bering Strait, the gateway from the Pacific Ocean to the Arctic Ocean. Rapid, profound changes tied to high atmospheric temperatures, a direct result of climate change, may be reordering the region’s physical makeup. Ocean researchers are asking themselves if they’re witnessing the transformation of an ecosystem.

Dems defend Omar after Trump retweets video against her

WASHINGTON — Top Democrats on Saturday rushed to defend Rep. Ilhan Omar after President Donald Trump retweeted video that was edited to suggest she was being dismissive of the significance of the worst terrorist assault on U.S. soil.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi scolded Trump for using the “painful images of 9/11 for a political attack” against the first-term Minnesota Democrat.

And presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, campaigning in New Hampshire, accused Trump of “trying to incite violence and to divide us, and every political leader should speak out against that.”

The video Trump retweeted Friday pulls a snippet of Omar’s recent speech to the Council on American-Islamic Relations in which she described the 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center as “some people did something,” and includes news footage of the hijacked planes hitting the Twin Towers. Trump also tweeted, “WE WILL NEVER FORGET!”

Omar’s remark has drawn criticism largely from political opponents and conservatives who say the lawmaker, one of the first Muslim women to serve in Congress, offered a flippant description of the assailants and the attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.

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Molinari builds 2-shot lead over Woods, Finau in Masters

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Record scores on the white boards at Augusta National. Ground-shaking roars for Tiger Woods along the back nine.

Francesco Molinari blocked out the buzz on a delirious day of nine players sharing space atop the leaderboard Saturday. He emerged with another rock-solid round that looked spectacular only on his scorecard.

Molinari ran off four straight birdies on the back nine for a 6-under 66 that kept Woods and everyone else at a short arm’s length going into a Sunday unlike any other at the Masters — an early start because of storms forecast for Sunday afternoon, with threesomes going off the first and 10th tees. The leaders were to tee off at 9:20 a.m.

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That puts Woods in the final group at the Masters for the first time in 12 years, two shots behind.

Molinari played with Woods on the final day at Carnoustie last summer and outplayed the 14-time major champion amid a crowded leaderboard to win the British Open.

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