Witness: Shooter at gay club showed ‘no hesitation’
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.(AP) – Deanne VanScyoc said she dropped to the floor behind a pool table at Club Q and called 911 as the first shots rang out just before midnight, hitting people at the bar.
VanScyoc was facing the entrance from behind a glass wall when the shooter came in, she said.The shooter turned right and fired a single shot toward the bar, then three more in rapid succession, then a flurry of shots. As pop music pounded and a strobe light flashed, VanScyoc saw the shooter, in body armor, move in a crouch down a ramp, rifle at eye level, and head toward the dance floor.
“There was no hesitation,” VanScyoc told The Associated Press in an interview.
Patrons at the gay club that night were celebrating a drag queen’s birthday and the atmosphere had been festive.When the shooting started, much of the crowd already had left the dance floor and was gathered in an enclosed patio just off the dance floor.
Five people were killed and 17 wounded by gunfire in an attack that unfolded over just minutes, according to authorities.
‘Bodies drop’ as Walmart manager kills 6 in Virginia attack
CHESAPEAKE, Va.(AP) – A Walmart manager pulled out a handgun before a routine employee meeting and began firing wildly around the break room of a Virginia store, killing six people in the nation´s second high-profile mass shooting in four days, police and witnesses said Wednesday.
The gunman was dead when officers arrived late Tuesday at the store in Chesapeake, Virginia’s second-largest city.Authorities said he apparently shot himself. Police were trying to determine a motive. One employee described watching “bodies drop” as the assailant fired haphazardly, without saying a word.
“He was just shooting all throughout the room. It didn´t matter who he hit. He didn´t say anything. He didn´t look at anybody in any specific type of way,” said Briana Tyler, a Walmart employee.
Six people were wounded in the shooting, which happened just after 10 p.m.as shoppers were stocking up ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. Police said they believe about 50 people were in the store at the time.
The gunman was identified as Andre Bing, 31, an overnight team leader who had been a Walmart employee since 2010.Police said he had one handgun and several magazines of ammunition.
Most Ukrainians left without power after new Russian strikes
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) – Russia unleashed a new missile onslaught on Ukraine’s battered energy grid Wednesday, robbing cities of power and some of water and public transport, too, compounding the hardship of winter for millions.The aerial mauling of power supplies also took nuclear plants and internet links offline and spilled blackouts into neighbor Moldova.
Multiple regions reported attacks in quick succession and cascading outages. Ukraine´s Energy Ministry said supplies were cut to “the vast majority of electricity consumers.” Lviv’s trams and trolleybuses stopped running as the city in western Ukraine lost both power and water, the mayor said.All of Kyiv lost water, the capital’s mayor said. Power also went out and public transport stopped in Kharkiv, the mayor of that northeastern city, Ukraine´s second largest, said.
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy instructed Ukraine´s ambassador to the United Nations to request an urgent Security Council meeting.
Addressing it later on Wednesday, Zelenskyy said that Ukraine will put forward a resolution condemning “any forms of energy terror.” Referring to Russia´s likely veto, he said, “it´s nonsense that the veto right is secured for the party that wages this war, this criminal war.”
“We cannot be hostage to one international terrorist,” Zelenskyy said, saying the council must act.
Most Fed officials at last meeting backed slower rate hikes
WASHINGTON (AP) – Most Federal Reserve officials at their last meeting favored reducing the size of their interest rate hikes “soon´´- just before raising their benchmark rate by a substantial three-quarters of a point for a fourth straight time.
The central bank’s policymakers saw “very few signs that inflation pressures were abating.” Still, a “substantial majority” of the officials felt that smaller rate hikes “would likely soon be appropriate,” according to the minutes of their Nov.1-2 meeting released Wednesday.
The Fed is widely expected to raise its key short-term rate, which affects many consumer and business loans, by a half-point when it next meets in mid-December.
“Slowing the pace would give the (Fed) the ability to assess the economic landscape and see where they´re at, `´ Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, wrote in a research report. “Short of some wild inflation report before the next meeting, (a half percentage point hike) sounds very reasonable in December.But the Fed is clearly not finished yet.´’
Rising wages, the result of a strong job market, combined with weak productivity growth, were “inconsistent” with the Fed´s ability to meet its 2% target for annual inflation, the policymakers concluded, according to the minutes.
Teen Gavi leads Spain to 7-0 rout of Costa Rica at World Cup
DOHA, Qatar (AP) – Not since Pelé in 1958 had someone as young as Gavi scored a goal at the World Cup.
The 18-year-old midfielder led the way Wednesday as Spain pulled off the biggest World Cup victory in its history, routing Costa Rica 7-0.
“I could never have imagined it,” said Gavi, who was named the game´s most valuable player.”I know I´m the youngest in the team and I respect everyone, but on the field it´s different and I bring out my best.”
Pelé scored two goals in the 1958 final, when Brazil won its first World Cup by beating Sweden 5-2.
“I´m proud to be in that podium,” he said.”Not even in my dreams I had imagined this.”
WHO, CDC: A record 40 million kids miss measles vaccine dose
LONDON (AP) – The World Health Organization and the U.S.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say measles immunization has dropped significantly since the coronavirus pandemic began, resulting in a record high of nearly 40 million children missing a vaccine dose last year.
In a report issued Wednesday, the WHO and the CDC said millions of children were now susceptible to measles, among the world´s most contagious diseases.In 2021, officials said there were about 9 million measles infections and 128,000 deaths worldwide.
The WHO and CDC said continued drops in vaccination, weak disease surveillance and delayed response plans due to COVID-19, in addition to ongoing outbreaks in more than 20 countries, mean that “measles is an imminent threat in every region of the world.”
Scientists estimate that at least 95% of a population needs to be immunized to protect against epidemics; the WHO and the CDC reported that only about 81% of children receive their first dose of measles vaccine while 71% get their second dose, marking the lowest global coverage rates of the first measles dose since 2008.
“The record number of children under-immunized and susceptible to measles shows the profound damage immunization systems have sustained during the COVID-19 pandemic,” CDC director Dr.Rochelle Walensky said in a statement.
10 days in, no suspect, no weapon in Idaho student slayings
MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) – Ten days after four University of Idaho students were stabbed to death in their rooms, police said Wednesday they still have not identified a suspect or found a murder weapon, and they continued asking for tips and surveillance video.
Moscow Police Capt.Roger Lanier told a news conference his department is putting all of its resources into solving the case and that investigators are prepared to work through the Thanksgiving holiday.
Authorities gave no indication that they´re any closer to making an arrest, but they did stress that they continue processing forensic evidence gathered from the home where the students were killed.
“We continue moving forward to understand why this occurred in our community,” said Police Chief James Fry.
The killings stunned bucolic Moscow, a college town and agricultural center that got its first Target store last year.The city, population of 26,000, is surrounded by rolling wheat and bean fields and had not seen a homicide since 2015.
$740M in crypto assets recovered in FTX bankruptcy so far
NEW YORK (AP) – The company tasked with locking down the assets of the failed cryptocurrency exchange FTX says it has managed to recover and secure $740 million in assets so far, a fraction of the potentially billions of dollars likely missing from the company’s coffers.
The numbers were disclosed on Wednesday in court filings by FTX, which hired the cryptocurrency custodial company BitGo hours after FTX filed for bankruptcy on Nov.11.
The biggest worry for many of FTX’s customers is they’ll never see their money again. FTX failed because its founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried and his lieutenants used customer assets to make bets in FTX’s closely related trading firm, Alameda Research.Bankman-Fried was reportedly looking for upwards of $8 billion from new investors to repair the company’s balance sheet.
Bankman-Fried “proved that there is no such thing as a `safe´ conflict of interest,” BitGo CEO Mike Belshe said in an email.
The $740 million figure is from Nov.16. BitGo estimates that the amount of recovered and secured assets has likely risen above $1 billion since that date.
UN: Children in Haiti hit by cholera as malnutrition rises
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) – A cholera outbreak sweeping through Haiti is claiming a growing number of children amid a surge in malnutrition, UNICEF announced Wednesday.
The deadly combination means that about 40% of cholera cases in the impoverished country of more than 11 million inhabitants now involve children, with 9 out of 10 cases reported in areas where people are starving, according to the United Nations agency.
“We have to plan for the worst,” Manuel Fontaine, director of UNICEF´s Office of Emergency Programs, told The Associated Press on Tuesday during a visit to Haiti.
Cholera has killed at least 216 people and sickened more than 12,000 since the first deaths were announced in early October, according to the Haitian Health Ministry and Pan American Health Organization. They say about 9,300 people are currently hospitalized with the disease.Experts believe the number is much higher due to underreporting.
UNICEF and Haiti´s government are seeking at least $28 million to help feed, hydrate and care for 1.4 million people affected by the crisis, with that number expected to increase as malnutrition worsens, especially in urban areas such as the Cite Soleil slum in the capital of Port-au-Prince, something that hasn´t been seen before.
Prayers go on, sometimes out of sight, in prep football
WEST BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.(AP) – Surrounded by a slew of players with their arms draped over shoulders, West Bloomfield High School assistant coach Justin Ibe bowed his head and led a Christian prayer before a recent Friday night game.
Forty yards down the sideline, three Muslim young men were having a quiet moment of their own.
“Ameen,” the players quietly said, using the Arabic word for amen.
Across America, most high school football seasons are winding down. Thousands of games, the first since the Supreme Court in June ruled it was OK for a public school coach near Seattle to pray on the field.The decision prompted speculation that prayer would become an even bigger part of the game-day fabric, though that hasn’t seemed to be the case.
Fouad Zaban, the head coach at Fordson High in Dearborn, calls the area just outside Detroit the “Middle East of America” and it is indeed home to thousands of people of Arab descent.After the court ruling, Zaban said, he was flooded with requests to use his platform and constitutional right to pray publicly. After thinking about it, he chose to keep his team’s prayers behind closed doors to avoid potential anti-Islamic jeers from fans in other communities.
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