In brief: Police say woman died of blow to head
ISTANBUL – A New York City woman who went missing and was later found dead in Istanbul had suffered a fatal blow to the head, police said Sunday.
Forensic experts have not concluded their autopsy report on the victim, Sarai Sierra, but it is “clear” the head injury caused her death, said Istanbul police chief Huseyin Capkin.
NTV, a Turkish broadcaster, said 15 people have been detained for questioning in the case.
Sierra, a 33-year-old mother of two, was last heard from on Jan. 21, the day she was to fly home from a vacation. Her body was discovered Saturday evening near the remnants of ancient city walls.
In Washington, the U.S. State Department confirmed Sierra’s death in Istanbul, thanked Turkey’s government for its extensive efforts to locate her body and said the investigation of what happened to her would continue.
NRA links gun checks to registry
WASHINGTON – The National Rifle Association’s executive vice president continued to oppose background checks for all gun purchases despite polls indicating that most NRA members don’t share his position.
The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre said on “Fox News Sunday” that background checks for all gun purchases would lead to a national registry of gun owners. Critics say such a registry could lead to taxes on guns or to confiscation.
Mark Kelly, a gun owner and husband of Gabrielle Giffords, the former Arizona congresswoman who survived a 2011 shooting, asked LaPierre to listen to his members. He said the current system prevented 1.7 million gun purchases since 1999. However, those potential buyers had other options because many gun sales don’t require a background check.
“Members of the NRA tend to be very reasonable on this issue,” Kelly said, who also appeared on the Fox show.
LaPierre said requiring checks for all gun purchases would be a bureaucratic nightmare. “It’s going to affect only the law-abiding people,” he said. “Criminals could care less.”
Presidential hopeful killed in copter crash
ASUNCION, Paraguay – Paraguayan presidential candidate Lino Cesar Oviedo has been killed in a helicopter crash, authorities said Sunday, ending a dramatic political career that included coups and repeated attempts to lead this impoverished 6.5 million-person country.
Oviedo was returning with his bodyguard from a political rally in northern Paraguay Saturday night when his pilot encountered bad weather. All three were killed in the crash, said a spokesman for Paraguay’s airport authority.
Defense Minister Maria Liz Garcia said she traveled to the scene Sunday with Oviedo’s daughter, congresswoman Fabiola Oviedo, and confirmed that the helicopter “disintegrated.”
A retired general and former army chief, Oviedo, 69, had tried for years to take the helm of his nation, and not always through democratic means.