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POSTED March 13, 2012 8:42 p.m.

WILD BLACK-FOOTED CAT: TEST-TUBE KITTEN BORN IN US: NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Several endangered black-footed cats have been born recently in the U.S. and researchers say Crystal's birth is the rarest — the first ever born from an embryo fertilized in a lab dish, frozen, and later implanted in a housecat's womb.

The black-footed cat is Africa's smallest wildcat and one of the world's smallest felines — smaller even than a domestic cat.

Earle Pope, interim director of the Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species, says Crystal was born Feb. 6 at the New Orleans complex. He says Crystal is proof that embryos of this dwindling species can be successfully implanted into domestic cats.

Only an estimated 10,000 of these cats, which get their name from their distinctive black foot pads, still live in the wild in southern Africa.

NJ'S CAPITAL TO MAKE EMERGENCY TOILET PAPER BUY: TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Officials in New Jersey's capital say they've resolved a fight over toilet paper.

Trenton's The Times newspaper reports Mayor Tony Mack's administration will move forward with an emergency purchase of toilet paper and paper towels. Supplies of both dwindled in city buildings while the administration and City Council quarreled over a contract to resupply city government.

The stalemate began last September. The council twice rejected a $42,000 contract for a year's supply of paper products because members raised concerns about a high unit price for hot-drink cups.

Before the $16,000 emergency contract was announced Tuesday, officials said paper towel and toilet paper dispensers were nearly depleted in senior citizen centers, police headquarters, the fire department and other city offices.

POLICE: NEV. MOM KILLS DAUGHTER, 6, WITH SCISSORS: LAS VEGAS (AP) — A woman accused of stabbing her 6-year-old daughter to death with scissors told police she had been taking a weight-loss product, had trouble sleeping for several days and felt an "evil" presence before the attack.

"Did I kill my daughter? Is she dead?'" Danielle Yvonne Slaughter asked police after police found her on Sunday, naked, bloody and running barefoot through Las Vegas, according to court documents released Tuesday.

The frenzied 27-year-old woman was hospitalized after she told police that the blood on her hands was from the "lamb of God." Police later found Kyla Franks dead at their home.

"There was no rhyme or reason to it," homicide Lt. Ray Steiber said of the girl's death. "I don't think there's anything that anyone could have anticipated."

In a recorded police interview early Monday, Slaughter told investigators she had trouble sleeping since she started taking the weight-loss product Hydroxycut four days earlier, and that she had been feeling "an evil presence" for several days. She said she slept just one hour Saturday night.

SMALL CHILD'S FINGERS FOUND IN HAWAII TRASH BIN: HONOLULU (AP) — For Gina Rose Vendegna, the horror of finding six tiny fingers in a trash bin at a Honolulu apartment complex didn't sink in until a day after she turned the plastic bag over to Honolulu police.

"Then I broke down thinking about the child," the mother of five told KHON-TV.

The fingers, which Vendegna found last month, are likely from a girl who's 2 1/2 to 4 years old, Honolulu police said.

Residents of the 389-unit Kukui Gardens complex near downtown Honolulu and Chinatown are abuzz about the find, which came to light when police asked the public for help this week, said Kevin Carney, Hawaii vice president for EAH Housing, the San Rafael, Calif.-based company that manages the affordable rentals.

WIS. TEEN DETAILS ALLEGED ABUSE IN POLICE VIDEO: MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin police video released Tuesday shows a 15-year-old girl in an oversized sweat shirt clutching her stuffed bunny, occasionally dabbing her eyes and softly describing years of alleged abuse and starvation by her parents.

The slightly built teen tells a detective she spent the last several years mostly confined to the basement and that she ate food from the trash or the floor because she's always hungry.

"I've just had it," she says at one point, breaking into tears. "I just don't even want to go back there."

The video was recorded four days after a passing motorist spotted the girl last month, weighing only 70 pounds, crying and walking barefoot in thin pajamas outside in the cold. She was so small the man mistook her for an 8-year-old.

The girl is wearing a bulky pink sweat shirt in the video that hides her body and makes it difficult to determine her size.

Prosecutors entered the two-hour video into evidence Tuesday at a preliminary hearing in Madison for the girl's father and stepmother, who are charged with child abuse, child neglect and reckless endangerment.

HIGHS IN 70S IN MARCH? WARM SPELL EXPECTED TO LAST: CHICAGO (AP) — Break out the beach towels, flip-flops and baseball bats: Warm weather is arriving early across much of the U.S., even in northern states where perplexed residents are swapping their snow shovels for golf clubs.

The unseasonably warm weather was pushing throngs of people outside to play Tuesday from the Plains to New England, where March is feeling like May with temperatures ranging from the high 60s to low 80s — smashing dozens of record highs.

Boaters were cruising along the river in downtown Chicago amid one of Illinois' warmest winters on record. Golfers were smacking balls at a central Minnesota course that opened weeks earlier than last year.

And an ice-breaking mission on Maine's Kennebec River on Tuesday was the shortest in recent memory — because the Coast Guard found no ice.

GO AHEAD, MAKE A REALITY SHOW: NEW YORK (AP) — Clint Eastwood's family is coming to TV in a new reality show.

The E! network said Tuesday that "Mrs. Eastwood & Company" will premiere May 20 as a 10-episode series.

The show spotlights Dina Eastwood, who has been married to the Oscar-winning actor-director since 1996. Also on hand are the Eastwoods' 15-year-old daughter, Morgan, as well as 18-year-old Francesca, Clint Eastwood's daughter with actress Frances Fisher.

Rounding out the cast is the all-male, six-member vocal group Overtone, managed by Dina Eastwood.

"Mrs. Eastwood & Company" is being filmed in the family's hometown of Carmel, Calif., as well as in Los Angeles.

 

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