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Judge provisionally dismisses assault case against Saudi A judge's ruling on Wednesday could end an assault and kidnapping case against two Saudi Arabian citizens.  A different judge ruled last year that he believes there's not enough evidence to convict Rayan Alqabbaa and Ahmed Alanazi of attacking a woman in 2013; the second judge says he doesn't think he has the authority to overrule the first judge. Prosecutors charged Alqabbaa and Alanazi with taking ...

House damaged by fire in north Springfield Springfield fire crews fought a fire on the city’s north side Thursday. Crews responded at about 8:30 a.m. to a call at 1212 N. Ethyl. The home appeared to be badly damaged by smoke and fire.  No one was home at the time, but the fire did kill two pets in the home. Investigators say a toaster in the kitchen likely started the fire.  ...

Jalapeno popper dip 1/29/15 1 fresh jalapeno, seeded and diced 1 8-ounce package of cream cheese 1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese 2 teaspoons of minced garlic 1-1/2 teaspoons of garlic salt 1/4 cup of bacon bits 1/2 cup of crushed Ritz crackers 1/4 cup of sour cream 2 tablespoons of melted butter Crackers or chips for dippingSoften cream cheese and combine it with shredded cheese, garlic, garlic salt, and diced jalapeno Toss crushed Ritz crackers ...

McCaskill calls to stop Pentagon budget cuts Missouri’s senior senator wants to take a closer look at planned cuts for the Defense Department. Sen. Claire McCaskill discussed what she called the urgent need for eliminating the automatic budget cuts known as the sequester and enacting acquisition reform. She talked at an Armed Services Committee hearing with Pentagon leaders on the impacts of the 2011 Budget Control Act on U.S. armed forces. VIDEO: McCaskill calls ...

Consumer Reports: Best TVs for Super Bowl A sports bar is a great place to watch the big game. But if you’re buying a TV for your Super Bowl party at home, Consumer Reports has complete buying advice. Its testers say a screen that’s at least 50 inches or larger is a good size for a crowd. Testers in Consumer Reports’ labs size up hundreds of TVs every year. Also important is a ...

Arkansas pharmacist arrested on federal drug charge LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A bond hearing is scheduled for an Arkansas pharmacist who has been arrested for allegedly distributing controlled drugs illegally. U.S. Attorney Christopher R. Thyer says Christopher Watson, a Perry County pharmacist, was arrested Wednesday on a charge of illegal distribution of a controlled substance. A bond hearing is scheduled for Watson Thursday afternoon. Court records do not indicate Watson has entered a ...

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Headline News

Guinea into Cup of Nations quarters after lots drawn
(L-R) President of the Malian football federation Baba Diarra, CAF's president Issa Hayatou, CAF's secretary general Icham El Amrani and financial director of Guinea's sports ministry Amara Dabo take part in a draw in Malabo on January 29, 2015Guinea qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals in bizarre fashion on Thursday after a drawing of lots was required to separate them and Mali. They will go through to a quarter-final on Sunday in Equatorial Guinea's capital Malabo against Group C winners Ghana while unfortunate Mali go home. The surreal event took place during a meeting of the tournament Organising Committee at a hotel in Malabo and was attended by AFP.

Jury selection resumes for Boston bombings trial
The John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse in Boston, Massachusetts, where jury selection is taking place in the trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, on January 5, 2015Jury selection in the trial of alleged Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev resumed Thursday after a massive snowstorm forced the US federal court to close for two days. It is the latest setback to the trial's schedule. Judge George O'Toole initially expected opening arguments to begin January 26 but even before the storm, the timetable slipped because jury selection has taken longer than expected.

Serena in dream Sharapova final, Murray makes decider
Serena Williams has a 16-2 record against Maria Sharapova, her opponent in Saturday's Australian Open finalArch-rivals Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova set up a dream Australian Open final Thursday while Andy Murray ground down Tomas Berdych to give himself a fourth crack at winning the Melbourne Park title. Williams battled past gallant fellow American Madison Keys while Sharapova demolished Russian compatriot Ekaterina Makarova to ensure the top seeds meet in Saturday's showpiece. She has a 16-2 record against Sharapova, with the Russian five-time Grand Slam champion losing their every encounter since 2004. An impressive Murray swept into a fourth Australian final in six years as he zeroed in on the elusive title, dousing big-serving Czech Berdych 6-7 (6/8), 6-0, 6-3, 7-5.

Obama budget to propose spending lift for military, domestic programs
Obama delivers remarks at the armed services farewell in honor of Hagel in VirginiaBy Jeff Mason WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama's budget will call for an increase in U.S. domestic and military spending that would end spending caps known as 'sequestration,' a White House official said, setting up a new source of conflict with Republicans in Congress. Obama intends to announce his plans during a meeting with congressional Democrats in Philadelphia on Thursday. The fiscal 2016 budget, which the White House intends to unveil on Monday, would fund a host of programs that Republicans are unlikely to support. It is the latest salvo by the Democratic president lobbed at a Congress controlled by the opposition party and follows a defiant State of the Union address last week that critics said betrayed an unwillingness to seek compromise.

As Romney weighs '16 bid, his past donors commit to Jeb Bush
FILE - In this Jan. 28, 2015 file photo, former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks at Mississippi State University in Starkville, Miss. Closing in on a decision about whether to again run for president, Mitt Romney is finding that several past major fundraisers and donors in key states have defected to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. The donors, in interviews with The Associated Press, said they see in Bush what they liked about Romney in 2012, namely what they believe it takes to serve successfully as president, but also something he could not muster in his two previous campaigns: what it takes, both in personality as a candidate and in a supporting staff, to win the White House for the GOP. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Closing in on a decision about whether to again run for president, Mitt Romney is finding that several past major fundraisers and donors in key states have defected to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.