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Grand Princess passengers sue cruise line, alleging negligence in coronavirus handling

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Passengers of a Princess cruise ship filed a lawsuit Wednesday, alleging the cruise line demonstrated negligence in its response to the coronavirus outbreak by operating cruises that led to the sickening of dozens of people and at least three deaths, including a Placer County man.

Plaintiffs in the case were passengers on ...Read more

Chicago mayor says she broke up an apparent underage drinking party while enforcing coronavirus rules

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CHICAGO -- Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has taken her "Stay Home, Save Lives" campaign to a new level this week, telling reporters she has personally confronted residents who are flouting anti-coronavirus social distancing rules.

At a news conference earlier in the week, Lightfoot said she rode up to the 50th Ward on the Far North Side where ...Read more

He survived a shooting at Trader Joe's. Would coronavirus be his downfall?

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It only took a bit of a chill and a slightly elevated temperature to send Kevin Lew to the bedroom with explicit instructions for his wife.

"From here on out," he told her, "don't come in unless you absolutely have to. When you come in, wear a mask, wear gloves. Try not to touch anything. When you leave, try not to touch anything else."

It ...Read more

Ill. Gov. Pritzker grants clemency requests to prisoners amid coronavirus pandemic

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CHICAGO -- After nearly four decades in prison for his role as the lookout in two gas station robberies, Basil Powell was given a second chance at life Thursday.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker commuted the former Chicago man's natural life sentence earlier this week amid mounting pressure from prison reform advocates urging the release of elderly ...Read more

CDC extends no-sail order for cruises until COVID-19 pandemic is declared over

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MIAMI -- Citing continued COVID-19 infections and deaths on cruise ships, federal health authorities are halting cruise operations in U.S. waters until the COVID-19 pandemic is over and requiring the industry to implement a plan to immediately mitigate outbreaks on ships.

In a new "no-sail" order issued late Thursday, the U.S. Centers for ...Read more

Gov. Newsom provided 'very little information' on state's $1 billion coronavirus mask purchase, lawmakers say

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California lawmakers demanded details Thursday about Gov. Gavin Newsom's agreement to spend almost $1 billion on protective masks needed to combat the state's coronavirus outbreak, saying there has been too little transparency in spending those taxpayer dollars.

"We're getting very little information," said Democratic ...Read more

Health care workers make up about 10% of California's positive coronavirus tests

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California Department of Public Health reported Wednesday that 1,651 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been among health care workers, a figure that is just under 10% of the state's confirmed coronavirus cases.

It was the first time the agency reported the number of all positive tests for health care workers. Previously...Read more

Kansas Gov. Kelly sues lawmakers over vote striking down limits on church gatherings

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LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is suing to stop Republican lawmakers from overturning her executive order limiting church gatherings -- triggering a high-stakes legal showdown amid a deadly pandemic.

Kelly on Thursday afternoon sued the Legislative Coordinating Council -- the seven-member body of legislative leaders that voted ...Read more

Border Patrol 'welcomes' investigation into birth at Calif. station

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SAN DIEGO -- Customs and Border Protection pushed back Thursday on a complaint from a Guatemalan woman who gave birth at a Border Patrol station in Chula Vista.

The woman's complaint, filed Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union and Jewish Family Service, asked the Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General to ...Read more

White House requires rapid coronavirus testing of staff — and reporters — near Trump

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WASHINGTON -- The White House required that journalists on Thursday take a rapid coronavirus test before participating in the news briefing frequently attended by President Donald Trump.

The White House Medical Unit decided to order the tests after one correspondent who was at a news briefing earlier this week reported symptoms. That reporter's...Read more

California court rules gang enhancements can carry life without parole terms

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SAN FRANCISCO -- A gang enhancement murder case that carries a life without parole sentence is not a violation of the United States' prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment, a California appeals court ruled this week.

In its 33-page partially published opinion, the 1st District California Appeals Court ruled that a life without parole ...Read more

Theodore Roosevelt sailor in ICU after being found unresponsive in Guam

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SAN DIEGO -- A sailor assigned to the San Diego-based aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt is in intensive care at U.S. Naval Hospital Guam after being found unresponsive in his room, the Navy said Thursday.

The sailor tested positive for COVID-19 on March 30, according to the Navy. NBC News reported the sailor was found unresponsive Thursday ...Read more

California coronavirus case count tops 20,000, doubling in just a week

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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- California's coronavirus cases doubled this week to surpass 20,000 Thursday as the state announced a new effort to help overburdened healthcare workers.

Statewide, 20,126 people are confirmed to have the deadly respiratory illness with 545 dead, according to data compiled by this news organization, seven days after ...Read more

Trump administration, citing coronavirus, expels 10,000 migrants in less than 3 weeks

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WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration has quickly expelled roughly 10,000 migrants to Mexico and other countries in less than three weeks since imposing its most severe immigration restrictions yet in response to the coronavirus outbreak, officials said Thursday.

After the United States and Mexico last month closed their border to "non-...Read more

Nation and world news briefs

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Florida coronavirus death toll nears 400

MIAMI -- Forty eight more people died in Florida from COVID-19, the single biggest jump in deaths since the outbreak began, state health officials announced Thursday night.

The new deaths brought the state's death toll to 371, a 15% jump since Wednesday evening, while the number of confirmed COVID-19 ...Read more

Joe Biden proposes expanding Medicare eligibility and student debt relief

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WASHINGTON -- In a peace offering to progressives a day after Sen. Bernie Sanders quit the presidential race, Joe Biden announced support Thursday for an expansion of Medicare and education policies that move closer to his former rival's agenda.

Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, proposed expanding government health ...Read more

Florida coronavirus death toll nears 400

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MIAMI -- Forty eight more people died in Florida from COVID-19, the single biggest jump in deaths since the outbreak began, state health officials announced Thursday night.

The new deaths brought the state's death toll to 371, a 15% jump since Wednesday evening, while the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Florida rose to nearly 17,000.

All...Read more

College counselor clashed with Lori Loughlin's husband over daughter's qualifications, records show

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LOS ANGELES -- Two years ago, a college counselor at Marymount High School, an elite all-girls school on Los Angeles' Westside, got a call in his office: J. Mossimo Giannulli, the fashion designer and husband of actress Lori Loughlin, was at the front desk and wanted to see him.

The counselor, Philip Petrone, had told the University of Southern...Read more

Former Venezuelan attorney general implicated in US bribery case in Miami

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MIAMI -- A former Venezuelan attorney general has been implicated in a major U.S. corruption case accusing a one-time oil contractor of using South Florida banks to funnel bribes to her to block criminal charges against his companies in Venezuela.

Although the former high-ranking official is not named in a Miami criminal case, sources familiar ...Read more

Washington University launches clinical trial on controversial drug to treat coronavirus

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ST. LOUIS -- Washington University School of Medicine announced Thursday that it is launching a clinical trial to investigate the controversial drug chloroquine, among others, to treat the new coronavirus.

The trial will look at different combinations of chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine and the antibiotic azithromycin. Hydroxychloroquine and ...Read more