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AP Top News at 8:20 a.m. EDT

Investigators, Branson go to spacecraft crash site
MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) - Federal accident investigators are headed to a desert crash site where a winged spaceship designed to give wealthy tourists a high-altitude view of Earth broke up during a test flight, killing one pilot and badly injuring another. Also going to the area about 120 miles north of downtown Los Angeles was British billionaire Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Galactic, whose SpaceShipTwo blew apart after being released from a carrier aircraft Friday. It was the second fiery setback for commercial space travel in less than a week.


Driver sought in crash that killed 3 on Halloween
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Los Angeles area authorities say they're looking for a motorist who crashed into three teenage girls trick-or-treating in Halloween costumes, leaving them with fatal injuries and fleeing the scene. The 13-year-old girls, including twin sisters, were in a crosswalk near an elementary school in Santa Ana when the SUV with two men inside hit them about 6:45 p.m. PDT Friday, police and fire officials said.


Iraqi officials: IS extremists line up, kill 50
BAGHDAD (AP) - Islamic State group extremists lined up and shot dead at least 50 tribesmen and women in Iraq's Anbar province, officials said Saturday, the latest mass killing committed by the group. The shooting happened late Friday in the village of Ras al-Maa, north of the provincial capital of Ramadi, Anbar councilman Faleh al-Issawi said.


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Boko Haram denies truce, kidnapped girls married
MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) - The leader of Nigeria's Islamic extremist group Boko Haram has denied agreeing to any cease-fire with the government and said more than 200 kidnapped schoolgirls all have converted to Islam and been married off. In a new video released late Friday night, Abubakar Shekau dashed hopes for a prisoner exchange to get the girls released.


'We just had a hunch': US marshals nab Eric Frein
MOUNTAINHOME, Pa. (AP) - Scott Malkowski, a task force commander with the U.S. Marshals Service, spied a figure moving from the woods toward an abandoned airplane hangar in the Pocono Mountains. Looking at his face, his black hat and fleece, and his height and weight, Malkowski was certain he had his man. "Suspect," he told the two operators by his side, and they fanned out on either side of their quarry, who had no idea he'd just been spotted. Hidden by tall grass, Malkowski moved stealthily toward his target, adrenaline coursing through his body.


Nurse free to move about as restrictions eased
FORT KENT, Maine (AP) - A nurse who treated Ebola patients in Sierra Leone can move about as she pleases after a Maine judge eased state-imposed restrictions on her, handing officials in Maine a defeat in the nation's biggest court case yet over how to balance personal liberty, public safety and fear of Ebola. Judge Charles C. LaVerdiere ruled Friday that Kaci Hickox must continue daily monitoring of her health but said there is no need to isolate her or restrict her movements because she has no symptoms and is therefore not contagious.


Report says 60,000 veterans get triple benefits
WASHINGTON (AP) - Nearly 60,000 veterans were triple dippers last year, drawing a total of $3.5 billion in military retirement pay plus veterans and Social Security disability benefits at the same time, congressional auditors report. It's all legal.


As election closes in, Obama on center stage
WASHINGTON (AP) - Clashing views from the White House and Republicans about the nation's trajectory are closing out the final week before Election Day. President Barack Obama on Saturday emphasized economic growth during his tenure while the Senate's Republican leader depicted events he says seem to be spinning out of the White House's control.


Hospital: Girl, 14, dies after school shooting
SEATTLE (AP) - Another of the teenagers wounded in a Washington state high school shooting has died, raising to four the number of fatalities after a student opened fire in a cafeteria a week ago. Shaylee Chuckulnaskit, 14, died late Friday afternoon, officials at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett said.


Iraqi peshmerga fighters prepare for Syria battle
MURSITPINAR, Turkey (AP) - Iraqi peshmerga fighters prepared Saturday to battle Islamic State group militants in the Syrian border town of Kobani, just hours after they arrived in a town that's become a focal point in the battle against the extremists. The force brought in badly needed heavy weapons including artillery, heavy machine guns and anti-tank missiles, material that could tip the balance of power in favor of the embattled Kurds fighting there.


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