Alleged sex abuse victim may testify at Hastert sentencing

CHICAGO (AP) — An alleged sex abuse victim of Dennis Hastert could testify about his emotional trauma next month at the former U.S. speaker's sentencing in his hush-money case, according to a transcript of an unannounced court hearing this week during which the court linked sex-abuse allegations to the Illinois Republican for the first time.

  • Written by MICHAEL TARM, Associated Press

Prosecutor: No jail for NYC officer in stairwell shooting

NEW YORK (AP) — A prosecutor will ask a judge not to give jail time to a New York City police officer convicted of accidentally firing a stray shot into a dark public housing stairwell that killed an unarmed man, a recommendation that the victim's family said "diminishes" his death.

  • Written by MICHAEL BALSAMO, Associated Press

Syrian forces enter IS-held Palmyra; intense clashes with IS

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Backed by Russian airstrikes, Syrian government forces on Thursday pushed into the ancient town of Palmyra that has been held by the Islamic State group since May, state TV reported, as an Iraqi military spokesman announced the start of a long-awaited military operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from IS militants.

  • Written by ALBERT AJI, Associated Press SINAN SALAHEDDIN, Associated Press

Australia: Mozambique debris "highly likely" from Flight 370

SYDNEY (AP) — Two pieces of debris recently discovered along the coast of Mozambique are "highly likely" to have come from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, Australian and Malaysian officials said Thursday.

  • Written by KRISTEN GELINEAU, Associated Press

Phoenix official backtracks after blaming voters for lines

PHOENIX (AP) — Bruce Weiss stewed after waiting 2½ hours in line outside a downtown Phoenix polling place, where juice drinks, snacks and circus animal cookies were handed out by citizens hoping to pacify thousands who turned out to cast ballots in Arizona's presidential primary.

  • Written by BOB CHRISTIE, Associated Press