In brief: City settles with pair shot at by police
Los Angeles – The city of Los Angeles reached a $4.2 million settlement with a mother and daughter who were injured when police mistakenly opened fire on them while they were delivering newspapers during the manhunt for disgruntled ex-cop Christopher Dorner, officials said Tuesday.
Margie Carranza and her 71-year-old mother, Emma Hernandez, were delivering papers around 5 a.m. on Feb. 7 when LAPD officers guarding the Torrance home of a target named in an online Dorner manifesto blasted at least 100 rounds at their pickup. Hernandez was shot in the back and Carranza had minor injuries.
Senators seek details on drone program
Washington – Democratic and Republican senators joined a former deputy chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Tuesday in urging the Obama administration to make public more information about its top-secret targeted killing program amid questions about the legality and effectiveness of hundreds of CIA drone strikes in Pakistan and elsewhere.
“More transparency is needed to maintain the support of the American people and the international community” for drone strikes, said Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., a key Obama ally and the chairman of the Constitution subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The White House refused to send a witness to the Senate’s first open hearing on the issue.
Some charges tossed in abortion case
Philadelphia – A Philadelphia judge tossed three of eight murder charges Tuesday in the high-profile trial of a Philadelphia abortion provider accused of killing babies allegedly born alive at his clinic.
Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 72, still faces the death penalty if convicted on four remaining counts of first-degree murder involving babies allegedly killed with scissors after being born alive.
Judge Jeffrey Minehart did not explain why he dismissed the three murder counts but apparently felt he had not heard sufficient evidence from prosecutors that those three babies were viable, born alive and then killed.
The judge also upheld murder charges in a patient’s overdose death. Gosnell is charged with third-degree murder in the 2009 death of 41-year-old Karnamaya Mongar, a recent refugee to the U.S. who died after an abortion at his Women’s Medical Society.