APNewsBreak: Aerosmith frontman Tyler to attend Hawaii hearing on celebrity photo privacy
HONOLULU (AP) — Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler plans to attend a legislative hearing in Hawaii on Friday on a bill that bears his name and would limit people's freedom to take photos and video of celebrities.
Hawaii's Senate Judiciary Committee plans to consider the so-called Steven Tyler Act on Friday morning, the first time lawmakers will discuss the bill publicly.
A publicist for the former "American Idol" judge told The Associated Press on Thursday that Tyler submitted written testimony supporting the proposal, which would allow people to collect damages from someone who photographs them in an offensive way during their personal or family time.
More than a dozen celebrities have submitted testimony supporting the bill, including Britney Spears, Avril Lavigne, Neil Diamond, Tommy Lee and the Osborne family. The letters all included the same text.
The stars say paparazzi have made simple activities like cooking with family and sunbathing elusive luxuries and the bill would give them peace of mind.
Massive manhunt for fired Los Angeles officer accused of killing 3 people centers on mountain
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A fired police officer who threatened to bring "warfare" to the Los Angeles Police Department went on a shooting rampage that left a policeman and two others dead and set off an extraordinary manhunt Thursday that put Southern California on edge, led hair-trigger officers to mistakenly shoot at innocent citizens and forced police to guard their own.
The search for Christopher Dorner had three states and Mexico on alert before shifting Thursday afternoon to the snowy mountains around Big Bear Lake, about 80 miles east of Los Angeles, where police found his burned-out pickup truck and tracks leading away from the vehicle.
San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said 125 officers were going door to door and attempting to track the suspect, and that a SWAT team was providing added security to those in the community. Schools were put on lockdown while investigators examined the vehicle and spread out across the area.
"He could be anywhere at this point, and that's why we're searching door to door," McMahon said, adding that the manhunt would continue "as long as we can." A snow storm was expected in the region with temperatures dipping into the teens overnight.
Said LAPD Assistant Chief Michel Moore: "This complex and violent investigation has led to this mountain."
CIA nominee Brennan defends drone strikes, says he doesn't know if waterboarding is effective
WASHINGTON (AP) — CIA Director-designate John Brennan strongly defended anti-terror attacks by unmanned drones Thursday under close questioning at a protest-disrupted confirmation hearing. On a second controversial topic, he said that after reading a classified intelligence report on harsh interrogation techniques, he does not know if waterboarding has yielded useful information.
Despite what he called a public misimpression, Brennan told the Senate Intelligence Committee that drone strikes are used only against targets planning to carry out attacks against the United States, never as retribution for an earlier one. "Nothing could be further from the truth," he declared.
Referring to one American citizen killed by a drone in Yemen in 2011, he said the man, Anwar al-Alawki, had ties to at least three attacks planned or carried out on U.S. soil. They included the Fort Hood, Texas, shooting that claimed 13 lives in 2009, a failed attempt to down a Detroit-bound airliner the same year and a thwarted plot to bomb cargo planes in 2010.
"He was intimately involved in activities to kill innocent men women and children, mostly Americans," Brennan said.
In a sign that the hearing had focused intense scrutiny on the drone program, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., told reporters after the hearing that she thinks it may be time to lift the secrecy off the program so that U.S. officials can acknowledge the strikes and correct what she said were exaggerated reports of civilian casualties.
10 Things to Know for Friday
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday:
1. EX-COP'S CHILLING JUSTIFICATION FOR CALIF. KILLING SPREE
"I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own," he says in an online manifesto. "I'm terminating yours."
Blizzard threatens New York City and New England; 1 to 2 feet of snow feared
BOSTON (AP) — A blizzard of potentially mammoth proportions threatened to strike the Northeast with a vengeance Friday, with up to 2 feet of snow feared along the densely populated Interstate 95 corridor from the New York City area to Boston and beyond.
From Pennsylvania to Maine, people rushed to stock up on food, shovels and other supplies, and road crews readied salt and sand, halfway through what had been a merciful winter.
Before the first snowflake had even fallen, Boston, Providence, R.I., Hartford, Conn., and other New England cities canceled school Friday, and airlines scratched more than 2,600 flights through Saturday, with the disruptions certain to ripple across the U.S.
Forecasters said this could one for the record books.
"This one doesn't come along every day. This is going to be a dangerous winter storm," said Alan Dunham, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Taunton, Mass. "Wherever you need to get to, get there by Friday afternoon and don't plan on leaving."
Boy Scouts face 14 weeks of heavy pressure before planned vote on whether to ease ban on gays
It promises to be a campaign as passionate and dramatic as any big election. For the next 14 weeks, the Boy Scouts of America will be the focus of prayers, petitions and pressure tactics aimed at swaying a vote on whether to ease its ban on gays as Scouts or adult leaders.
The decision will be made the week of May 20 by the roughly 1,400 voting members of the BSA's National Council. The policy was supposed to be settled Wednesday by the Scouts' 70-member national executive board, but the board concluded the issue was so complex that the organization needed more time to study it.
At stake is a proposal to ease the ban by allowing sponsors of local Scout units to decide for themselves whether to admit gays. Gay-rights groups say the plan is inadequate, and that no units should be allowed to discriminate. Some conservative religious leaders and advocacy groups want the ban to stay in place nationwide.
Both sides are girding for intensive lobbying between now and late May, hoping to influence the outcome.
"Keep the pressure on," was the message Thursday from the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation to its supporters.
Islamic summit urges Syria dialogue even as opposition leader's initiative for talks unravels
CAIRO (AP) — Leaders at an Islamic summit on Thursday urged a dialogue between the Syrian opposition and regime just as a new initiative for talks proposed by an anti-government leader appeared to be unraveling.
Like previous diplomatic initiatives on Syria, opposition chief Mouaz al-Khatib's call for talks made less than a week ago appeared doomed to failure. And with troops and rebels clashing for a second day around Damascus, frustrated Syrians dismissed the calls for dialogue as empty talk.
"All of this does not concern us," said Iyad, a Syrian fighter on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, which has witnessed heavy fighting in the last two days.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose country is Syria's closest ally in the Middle East, attended the summit and said at a news conference Thursday that he supported dialogue. He added that Egypt, Turkey and Iran were moving toward cooperation on Syria. But he also defended Bashar Assad regime, warning against meddling in the domestic affairs of other countries.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also strongly welcomed al-Khatib's proposal for political talks and expressed hope that Syrian authorities would accept it.
150-foot asteroid will buzz Earth next week, no need to duck for incredibly close approach
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — A 150-foot-wide asteroid will come remarkably close to Earth next week, even closer than high-flying communication and weather satellites. It will be the nearest known flyby for an object of this size.
But don't worry. Scientists promise the megarock will be at least 17,100 miles away when it zips past next Friday.
"No Earth impact is possible," Donald Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object program at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., said Thursday.
Even the chance of an asteroid-satellite run-in is extremely remote, Yeomans and other scientists noted. A few hundred satellites orbit at 22,300 miles, higher than the asteroid's path, although operators are being warned about the incoming object for tracking purposes.
"No one has raised a red flag, nor will they," Yeomans told reporters. "I certainly don't anticipate any problems whatsoever."
Plight of poor living in cages highlights severe housing need in wealthy Hong Kong
HONG KONG (AP) — For many of the richest people in Hong Kong, one of Asia's wealthiest cities, home is a mansion with an expansive view from the heights of Victoria Peak. For some of the poorest, like Leung Cho-yin, home is a metal cage.
The 67-year-old former butcher pays 1,300 Hong Kong dollars ($167) a month for one of about a dozen wire mesh cages resembling rabbit hutches crammed into a dilapidated apartment in a gritty, working-class West Kowloon neighborhood.
The cages, stacked on top of each other, measure 1.5 square meters (16 square feet). To keep bedbugs away, Leung and his roommates put thin pads, bamboo mats, even old linoleum on their cages' wooden planks instead of mattresses.
"I've been bitten so much I'm used to it," said Leung, rolling up the sleeve of his oversized blue fleece jacket to reveal a red mark on his hand. "There's nothing you can do about it. I've got to live here. I've got to survive," he said as he let out a phlegmy cough.
Some 100,000 people in the former British colony live in what's known as inadequate housing, according to the Society for Community Organization, a social welfare group. The category also includes apartments subdivided into tiny cubicles or filled with coffin-sized wood and metal sleeping compartments as well as rooftop shacks. They're a grim counterpoint to the southern Chinese city's renowned material affluence.
Thigh-high lizard boots and ladylike purple: lots of fall options at start of NY Fashion Week
NEW YORK (AP) — From delicate purple skirts to thigh-high boots in lizard, New York Fashion Week opened Thursday with an anything goes vibe for fall.
"The trend is freedom," said Max Azria, who sent embroidered tunics, fur outerwear and delicate lingerie-style underpinnings down his runway on the first of eight days of previews.
Richard Chai focused on women's metallic military jackets and slim, ladylike purple skirt suits with man-tailored shirts underneath. Men shared the runway dressed in plaid suits and lean overcoats.
In addition to seasonal greens, berry tones and regal blues popped up on catwalks set up at Lincoln Center and around the city.
Tadashi Shoji was moved by an ice princess just right for a messy weather forecast of blizzard-like snow as Fashion Week headed into the weekend.