Suspect in killing of 5 at Colorado club held without bail
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — The alleged shooter facing possible hate crime charges in the fatal shooting of five people at a Colorado Springs gay nightclub was ordered held without bail in an initial court appearance Wednesday as the suspect sat slumped over in a chair.
Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22, could be seen with injuries visible on their face and head in a brief video appearance from jail. Aldrich appeared to need prompting by defense attorneys and offered a slurred response when asked to state their name by El Paso County Court Judge Charlotte Ankeny.
The suspect was beaten into submission by patrons during Saturday night's shooting at Club Q and released from the hospital Tuesday. The motive in the shooting was still under investigation, but authorities said Aldrich faces possible murder and hate crime charges.
Hate crime charges would require proving that the shooter was motivated by bias, such as against the victims’ actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. The charges against Aldrich are preliminary, and prosecutors have not yet filed formal charges.
Defense attorneys said late Tuesday that the suspect is nonbinary and in court filings referred to the suspect as “Mx. Aldrich." The attorneys' footnotes assert that Aldrich is nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns.
'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."
Reformist leader Anwar close to becoming Malaysia's next PM
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Reformist opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim edged closer to become Malaysia's new prime minister after a political party agreed Thursday to support a unity government following inconclusive general elections.
Any agreement must still be approved by Malaysia's king. Last Saturday's divisive election led to a hung parliament that renewed a leadership crisis in Malaysia, which had three prime ministers since 2018. Police have tightened security nationwide as social media warned of racial troubles if Anwar’s multiethnic bloc wins.
Anwar's Pakatan Harapan, or Alliance of Hope, topped the race with 82 parliamentary seats, short of the 112 needed for a majority. Former Prime Minister Muhyiddin’s Malay-centric Perikatan Nasional, or National Alliance, won 73 seats. The alliance led by the United Malays National Organization, which has 30 seats, hold the key that will tilt the balance.
UMNO reversed its decision to remain in the opposition, saying it will heed the king's proposal for a unity government.
UMNO's secretary-general Ahmad Maslan said Thursday the party's highest-decision making body has decided to now support a unity government that is not led by Muhyiddin's camp. He said the party will accept any unity government or any other form of government decided by the king.
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. Additional surveillance video could be just as helpful for what it doesn't show as what it does, said Police Chief James Fry.
“We continue moving forward to understand why this occurred in our community,” Fry said.
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.
Thanksgiving travel rush is back with some new habits
The Thanksgiving travel rush was back on this year, as people caught planes in numbers not seen in years, setting aside inflation concerns to reunite with loved ones and enjoy some normalcy after two holiday seasons marked by COVID-19 restrictions.
Changing habits around work and play, however, might spread out the crowds and reduce the usual amount of holiday travel stress. Experts say many people will start holiday trips early or return home later than normal because they will spend a few days working remotely — or at least tell the boss they're working remotely.
The busiest travel days during Thanksgiving week are usually Tuesday, Wednesday and the Sunday after the holiday. This year, the Federal Aviation Administration expects Tuesday to be the busiest travel day with roughly 48,000 scheduled flights.
Chris Williams, of Raleigh, North Carolina, flew Tuesday morning with his wife and two kids to Atlanta, Georgia, to spend the holiday with extended family.
“Of course it’s a stressful and expensive time to fly,” said Williams, 44, who works in finance. “But after a couple years of not getting to spend Thanksgiving with our extended family, I’d say we’re feeling thankful that the world’s gotten to a safe enough place where we can be with loved ones again.”
$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.
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.