On-air gunman became increasingly volatile before killings MONETA, Va. (AP) - Vester Flanagan had become increasingly volatile in recent years, picking fights with co-workers and strangers over seemingly mundane incidents or perceived slights well before he fatally shot two former colleagues on live television. Flanagan offered a variety of motives before he killed himself Wednesday: A rambling 23-page manifesto sent to a national news network described his ambush as revenge for the killings of nine black people inside a church in South Carolina, which prompted federal hate crime charges against a white suspect. On social media, Flanagan claimed his victims, 24-year-old Alison Parker and 27-year-old Adam Ward, had wronged him.
Memories, tears mark newscast a day after on-air shootings ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - The colleagues of two journalists shot to death on live television returned to their morning show Thursday with memories, tears and a determination to carry on. WDBJ-TV's "Mornin'" show opened with images of reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward, with the words "In Memory."
Obama walks New Orleans streets, says city 'moving forward' NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Visiting on tidy porch stoops and dining at a thriving corner eatery, President Barack Obama paid tribute to New Orleans on Thursday as an extraordinary example of renewal and resilience 10 years after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. "The fact that we can make this many strides 10 years after a terrible, epic disaster, I think, is an indication of the kind of spirit we have in this city," Obama declared after walking door to door in the historic Treme section of a city reborn from tragedy. He cautioned, though, that "just because the housing is nice doesn't mean our job is done."
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California cut water use by 31 percent in July amid drought FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - California cities cut water use by a combined 31 percent in July, exceeding the governor's statewide mandate to conserve, officials said Thursday. The strong water conservation figures show California residents are beginning to understand the dire need to cut back in a fourth year of drought, Felicia Marcus, chair of the State Water Resources Control Board, said.
Dead migrants found in abandoned truck near Austrian capital VIENNA (AP) - As regional leaders met Thursday to tackle Europe's refugee crisis, a gruesome discovery unfolded a short drive from the Austrian capital: An abandoned truck was found with at least 20 - and possibly up to 50 - decomposing bodies of migrants piled inside. It was the latest tragedy in a year that has seen tens of thousands of people risking all to seek a better life or refuge in wealthy European countries. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said at the Vienna conference she was "shaken by the awful news," and summit participants held a minute of silence.
Anchor's shock at live TV slayings shifts to poise, strength ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - The wide-eyed, open-mouthed look of shock on the face of WDBJ-TV anchor Kim McBroom was seen worldwide after her two co-workers were fatally shot on live television. But as her grieving newsroom went back to work, and she showed poise and strength Thursday as the on-camera leader of a team that refused to give in. It was the only thing McBroom figured she could do after reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed by a disgruntled former reporter who had been fired from their team two years ago.
A Q&A with Wall Street's top psychiatrist on market turmoil NEW YORK (AP) - When it seems like the stock market has lost its mind, big banks and investment firms often turn to one particular psychiatrist: Richard Peterson, CEO of MarketPsych, a firm that applies research from behavioral science to financial markets. MarketPsych's computer programs attempt to gauge the market's mood by scanning news and Twitter and other social media. The data feed it sells to traders sifts through more than 3 million articles each day, registering confusion, optimism and fear. Last month, Peterson warned his investor clients that they were in for a rough ride and probably "a real correction" later in the summer. "Fear is creeping in," he said.
Democratic Party lags in money before presidential year MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The Democratic National Committee barely has more cash than it does IOUs, and it is being outraised month after month by its Republican competitor. Its $24 million debt from the 2012 presidential election, only recently paid down, has squeezed investments in the next White House race. Underdeveloped party resources such as voter data files could become a serious disadvantage for the eventual nominee, particularly if that person is not front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton, who would enter a general election contest with her own outreach network.
Clinton likens GOP's views on women to those of terrorists CLEVELAND (AP) - Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday drew parallels between terrorist organizations and the field of Republican candidates for president when it comes to their views on women, telling an Ohio audience her potential GOP rivals were pushing "out of date" policies. "Now extreme views about women? We expect that from some of the terrorist groups. We expect that from people who don't want to live in the modern world," Clinton said.