Amanda Knox murder conviction overturned

Raffaele Sollecito leaves Italy's highest court building in Rome, Italy, 27 March 2015. American Amanda Knox and her Italian ex-boyfriend expect to learn their fate Friday when Italy's highest court hears their appeal of their guilty verdicts in the brutal 2007 murder of Knox's British roommate Meredith Kercher. (AP Photo/Massimo Percossi, ANSA) ITALY OUTItaly's highest court rules in favor of the American and her ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito.



Ferguson grand jury wanted to make public statement, documents reveal

Attorney Daryl Parks, center, talks to reporters as Lesley McSpadden, left, and Michael Brown Sr., right, parents of 18-year-old Michael Brown Jr., listen during a news conference, Thursday, March 5, 2015, in Dellwood, Mo. Neither McSpadden nor Brown spoke or took questions. The Justice Department on Wednesday cleared former Ferguson, Mo., police Officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown Jr., but also issued a scathing report calling for sweeping changes in city law enforcement practices it called discriminatory and unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)A week before the Ferguson grand jury chose not to charge police Officer Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown, it was denied a request to make a public statement about the controversial case, court documents filed Friday reveal.



Student group that revealed racist SAE video causes change at Oklahoma

The national headquarters of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity is shown in this photograph taken March 27, 2015. The SAE national headquarters is in Evanston, Illinois. (AP Photo/Teresa Crawford)At a press conference announcing the findings of an investigation into a racist chant that prompted the shuttering of Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s Oklahoma University chapter and the expulsion of two fraternity members, OU President David Boren saluted the student activists of Unheard, who first brought the now widely viewed SAE video to light.



Prosecutors: Evidence Germanwings co-pilot hid illness

Investigators carry boxes from the apartment of Germanwings airliner jet co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, in Duesseldorf, Germany, Thursday March 26, 2015. On Thursday, French prosecutors said Lubitz, the co-pilot of Germanwings Flight 9525, "intentionally" crashed the jet into the side of a mountain Tuesday in the French Alps. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)Police have searched the homes of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz in two cities.



Greeks gone wild: Can schools solve the fraternity problem?

Students and others demonstrate on the Penn State campus in support of women police say were depicted on Kappa Delta Rho fraternity's private Facebook pages, Friday, March 20, 2015, in State College, Pa. Police are investigating allegations Kappa Delta Rho fraternity members used two secret Facebook pages to post photos of nude females, some of whom appeared to be sleeping or passed out, as well as posts relating to hazing or drug deals. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)After at least seven fraternities have been suspended for offensive, dangerous and in some cases potentially criminal behavior this month, some schools are asking what they can do to get a handle on Greek life.



Harry Reid retiring: Democrats who could replace him



Astronauts dock with space station for 1-year mission

Russia's Soyuz-FG booster rocket with the space capsule Soyuz TMA-16M that will carry a new crew to the International Space Station (ISS) is installed at the launch pad in Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, Friday, March 27, 2015. The new Soyuz mission is scheduled for Saturday, March 28.(AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)BAIKONUR, Kazakhstan (AP) — The capsule carrying a Russian and an American who are to spend a year away from Earth docked Saturday with the International Space Station.



Inside the elaborate, often unglamorous world of presidential hotel stays

President Barack Obama has visited scores of foreign countries in his six years in the White House, conducting high-stakes diplomacy amid high-priced luxury at some of the world’s poshest destinations.



Senate OKs Republican balanced-budget plan, following House

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., accompanied by Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this March 24, 2015 file photo. Senators worked into Friday's pre-dawn hours March 27, 2015 on a stack of amendments to the balanced-budget plan, which closely follows a blueprint the House passed Wednesday. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans muscled a balanced-budget plan through the Senate early Friday, positioning Congress for months of battling President Barack Obama over the GOP's goals of slicing spending and dismantling his health care law.



Jury clears top Silicon Valley firm of gender bias, retaliation

Ellen Pao leaves court as her sexual bias trial against fomer employer Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byerr continues in San FranciscoBy Sarah McBride and Dan Levine SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Silicon Valley powerhouse venture capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers was cleared on Friday of claims it short-circuited the career of a former partner because she is a woman, in a gender discrimination trial that shook the tech world. A California jury also rejected a claim that Kleiner, the firm that backed Google Inc and Amazon.com Inc, had retaliated against its former partner, Ellen Pao, by firing her after she sued in 2012. Despite days of courtroom drama about affairs, books of erotic poetry and office flirting, juror Steve Sammut, who mostly voted for Kleiner, said the decision came down to Pao's effectiveness at her job. The verdict dashed Pao's hopes for personal vindication, but the trial revealed embarrassing disclosures about how Pao and other women were treated at Kleiner and Silicon Valley's corporate culture and its lack of diversity.



Two new accusers say Bill Cosby drugged, sexually assaulted them

Sunni Welles and attorney Gloria Allred hug as Margie Shapiro looks on during a news conference to allege that Welles and Shapiro believe that they were drugged and sexually assaulted by Bill Cosby, in Los AngelesTwo more women came forward on Friday accusing veteran comedian Bill Cosby of drugging and sexually assaulting them decades ago, when they were in their teens. Sunni Welles and Margie Shapiro joined the more than three dozen women who have accused the 77-year-old comedian of sexual assault, reading statements alongside celebrity attorney Gloria Allred. He was Bill Cosby and I buried it in my memory until all of these brave women began to come forward," said Welles, who sobbed during her statement. Best known for his "America's Dad" persona Dr. Cliff Huxtable on the top-rated "Cosby Show," Cosby has never been charged over any of the allegations.



Arkansas Senate passes religion bill seen as targeting gays
The Arkansas Senate overwhelmingly approved on Friday a Republican-backed bill whose authors say is intended to protect religious freedoms but critics contend could allow businesses to refuse service to gay people. The bill advancing in the Republican-led Arkansas legislature says "governments should not substantially burden the free exercise of religion without compelling justification." Supporters say a business should not be forced to, for example, cater a same-sex wedding if doing so would violate the religious beliefs of the owner. Two of the most powerful companies in the United States, retailer Wal-Mart Stores Inc, which has its home office in Arkansas, and technology giant Apple Inc have criticized the measure. "We feel this legislation is counter to this core basic belief of respect for the individual and sends the wrong message about Arkansas, as well as the diverse environment which exists in the state," a Walmart spokesman said in a statement.

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