Last words from missing plane were routine KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) - "All right, good night" were the final words heard by air traffic controllers from the missing Malaysia Airlines flight before it vanished over the South China Sea five days ago, relatives of the passengers were told Wednesday. News of the last communication came as Malaysia defended its handling of the hunt for the missing Boeing 777 but acknowledged it is still unsure which direction the plane was headed when it disappeared, highlighting the massive task facing the international search.
Debate over military sexual assaults far from over WASHINGTON (AP) - The tumult over how to stop sexual assaults in the U.S. military is a long way from over as Congress grapples to find legislative solutions and new details emerge about a high-profile case involving an Army general and a female captain under his command. In a rare display of bipartisanship, the Senate unanimously approved legislation this week to better protect victims within the ranks and ban the "good soldier defense" to make sure a defendant's fate is determined solely by evidence. But the House has signaled it won't take up the bill immediately despite the momentum generated by the Senate's 97-0 vote.
Senate investigation of CIA dogged by controversy WASHINGTON (AP) - House Speaker John Boehner said Wednesday he is concerned over allegations of CIA snooping into computer files used by Senate investigators delving into allegations of past spy agency torture. At the same time, Boehner said he would keep his fuller opinions to himself until an internal report is completed by the CIA's inspector general.
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2 NYC buildings collapse in explosion, 2 dead NEW YORK (AP) - A thunderous explosion that may have been caused by a gas leak flattened two East Harlem apartment buildings Wednesday, killing at least two people, injuring 18 and leaving an undisclosed number missing. Utility workers were on the way to check out a report of a gas odor at the time of the 9:30 a.m. blast, which shattered store windows for blocks, hurled debris onto elevated commuter railroad tracks close by, cast a plume of smoke over the skyline and sent people running into the streets.
GO FIGURE: Health care needs 42 sign-ups a minute WASHINGTON (AP) - If the Obama administration's health care plan is going to pass what amounts to its first physical, people have to sign up this month at a pretty speedy rate: 42 times a minute. That's somewhere between the steady rate you breathe and how fast your heart beats.
Ukraine accuses Russia of military buildup KIEV, Ukraine (AP) - Ukraine accused Russia on Wednesday of conducting a large military buildup near their border that raises the threat of an invasion, but Moscow denied that. Andriy Parubiy, secretary of Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council, told reporters in Kiev that Russia has deployed more than 80,000 troops, up to 270 tanks and 140 combat planes close to the border, creating the "threat of a full-scale invasion from various directions."
Pistorius trial: Bullet-holed toilet door in court PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) - Kneeling, a South African police officer on Wednesday swung a cricket bat at a toilet door erected in the courtroom at Oscar Pistorius' murder trial, using two key pieces of evidence to partially re-enact the night the athlete killed his girlfriend by shooting her through the same door more than a year ago. Then police Col. J.G. Vermeulen faced tough questioning from Pistorius' defense lawyer, who tried to discredit the police investigation of the shooting and alleged that Vermeulen, a forensic expert, had made glaring missteps in his analysis.
Honor student who sued parents returns home ROSELAND, N.J. (AP) - The New Jersey honor student who sued to get her parents to support her after she moved out of their home has reunited with them. The lawyer representing Rachel Canning's parents said in a statement Wednesday that the 18-year-old's return is not contingent on any financial or other considerations, the Star-Ledger of Newark reported (http://bit.ly/1fq6r3x ).
3-year theory: Big renewal deal for 'Big Bang' NEW YORK (AP) - CBS says it's renewing its hit comedy "The Big Bang Theory" for three more years. The extraordinary three-year deal would carry TV's most-watched sitcom through the 2016-2017 season, the series' 10th on the air.
Sandusky's wife: Victims manipulated over money STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) - The wife of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky says she "definitely" believes her husband is innocent despite being convicted of sexually abusing 10 boys and that the victims' financial gain was at play. Dottie Sandusky said in an interview broadcast Wednesday on NBC's "Today" show that "there was nothing that went on because I was here" in the couple's small home in State College, where some of the victims reported being abused in the basement.