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By Scott Malone and Edward McAllister FERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - Missouri's governor ordered the withdrawal of National Guard troops from the riot-weary town of Ferguson on Thursday as tensions eased after nearly two weeks of racially charged protests over the fatal shooting of a black teenager. A relaxed, orderly mood prevailed among demonstrators for a second straight evening on Thursday, the calmest night in the St. Louis suburb since unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown was gunned down by a white police officer on Aug. 9 under disputed circumstances. Keep them close." Ferguson erupted in anger after the teenager's slaying, with nightly rallies frequently punctuated by looting, vandalism and clashes between protesters and heavily armed riot police, often ending in volleys of tear gas and dozens of arrests. Although Ferguson is predominantly African American, its political leadership, police department and public school administration are dominated by whites. . . more
By Letitia Stein TAMPA Fla. (Reuters) - A federal judge in north Florida on Thursday struck down the state's gay marriage ban as unconstitutional, but stayed the ruling, leaving same-sex couples still unable to marry in the state. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle of Florida's Northern District in Tallahassee is the fifth judge in the state to rule against a same-sex marriage ban approved by voters in 2008, but the first federal judge to do so. "The institution of marriage survived when bans on interracial marriage were struck down, and the institution will survive when bans on same-sex marriage are struck down," Hinkle wrote. The ruling addressed two lawsuits involving 10 same-sex couples, mostly married in other states and seeking recognition in Florida. . . more
The online news publication that employed slain U.S. Boston-based GlobalPost said on Thursday the Foley family had agreed to release the email that it received from Islamic State a week before the video of his execution was released on Tuesday. We believe the text offers insight into the motivations and tactics of the Islamic State." Foley was beheaded by the group in an act shown in a video released in which Islamic State called for the United States to end its airstrikes in Iraq. . . more
Philadelphia School Superintendent Dr. William Hite is now backing off a somewhat controversial plan to save money. . . more
Fri, 22 Aug 2014 00:00:16 -0400
Today is Friday, August 22, the 234th day of 2014. There are 131 days left in the year. . . more
Police are trying to track down the trio of suspects who they say have been stalking out senior citizens at banks throughout Philadelphia then attacking and robbing them. . . more
Nick Foles threw for 179 yards and a touchdown to lead the Philadelphia Eagles to a 31-21 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night. . . more
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 23:49:45 -0400
Police are investigating a shooting that left one man dead in Philadelphia's Frankford section. . . more
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 23:44:07 -0400
A clerk was shot multiple times at a liquor store in Wilmington, Delaware. . . more
NEW YORK (AP) A federal judge in Manhattan on Thursday said Argentina's plans to evade his orders by failing to make required payments to U.S. bondholders is illegal and cannot be carried out, but he stopped short of finding the South American nation in contempt of court. . . more
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) Gov. Jay Nixon on Thursday ordered the Missouri National Guard to begin withdrawing from Ferguson, where nightly scenes of unrest have erupted since a white police officer fatally shot an unarmed black 18-year-old nearly two weeks ago. . . more
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 23:38:49 -0400
WASHINGTON (AP) Toby Massey, a photographer and photo editor who directed coverage of presidents and political conventions as well as natural disasters, the space program and sporting events during a 38-year career with The Associated Press, died Thursday. He was 80. . . more
Philadelphia's Taney Dragons loss to Chicago 6-5 on Thursday, knocking them out of the Little League World Series. . . more
By Daniel Lovering BOSTON (Reuters) - A friend of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev pleaded guilty on Thursday to charges of hindering the investigation into the blasts in a deal with prosecutors that calls for a prison sentence of up to seven years. Dias Kadyrbayev, a 20-year-old Kazakh national, had been scheduled to go on trial next month and was facing up to 25 years in prison on charges of conspiracy and obstruction of justice for removing a backpack and other evidence from Tsarnaevs dormitory room in the days after the bombing. Three people were killed and more than 260 were injured when two pressure-cooker bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013. Kadyrbayev also agreed to be deported from the United States as part of the agreement. . . more
California diners can now legally enjoy a meal on a restaurant patio with their dogs in tow, under a law signed Thursday by Governor Jerry Brown that eliminates health code regulations banning restaurant owners from allowing pooches on the premises. Starting next year, California canines will be allowed to dine al fresco if they are wearing leashes or are relaxing in a carrier. "I wish everyone bone-apptit, quipped Democratic Assemblywoman Mariko Yamada, the law's author. "Restaurateurs in California will see more businesses catering to their customers and the canine companions they love. The new law clarifies a section of the states health code that banned dogs from restaurants altogether, including on outdoor patios or courtyards. . . more
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) American Airlines says it will extend its fee for unaccompanied minors to charge $150 extra each way for children between 5 and 14. . . more
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 22:07:48 -0400
SAN DIEGO (AP) About 63 trillion gallons of water have been lost to drought in the western United States, enough to blanket the region with 4 inches of water, according to a study published Thursday. . . more

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