AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Surrounded by sleigh bell-ringing Santa Claus impersonators, Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday signed a law protecting Christmas and other holiday celebrations in Texas public schools from legal challenges - but also stressed that freedom of religion is not the same thing as freedom from religion.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Danielle Powell was going through a hard time in the spring of 2011, just months away from graduating from a conservative Christian college in Nebraska. She had fallen in love with another woman, a strictly forbidden relationship at a school where even prolonged hugs were banned.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - A Connecticut woman disfigured by a friend's pet chimpanzee in 2009 was denied permission Friday to sue the state for $150 million on her claim that officials knew the animal was dangerous but didn't do anything about it.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The revelation Friday that a former commander of a Nazi SS-led military unit has lived quietly in Minneapolis for the past six decades came as a shock to people who knew him, prompted harsh condemnations from World War II survivors in the U.S. and Europe, and led prosecutors in Poland to say they would investigate.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Authorities lifted evacuations in a wide swath of terrain outside Colorado Springs on Friday as they said a surprise rain shower helped them expand containment of a wildfire that has destroyed 400 homes.
RENO, Nev. (AP) - One of two Czech-built military training jets that collided in midair while practicing for this fall's National Championship Air Races in Reno had to make a belly landing on the runway with no wheels, but neither pilot was hurt at the airport where 11 people were killed during the finals competition in 2011.
PHOENIX (AP) - A 91-year-old Arizona weightlifter didn't just break a world record for the bench press, he powered through it by 52 pounds.
NORTH BAY VILLAGE, Fla. (AP) - Investigators began examining a twisted pile of concrete, metal and wood on Friday to determine why a waterfront deck at a popular sports bar collapsed into shallow Biscayne Bay, injuring two dozen people gathered to cheer the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A high school football player convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl after an alcohol-fueled party last summer was given the state's second-toughest sex offender classification at a Friday hearing.
BOSTON WOMAN PAYS $560,000 FOR 2 PARKING SPOTS: BOSTON (AP) - Parking is such a precious commodity in Boston that one woman was willing to pay $560,000 for two off-street spaces near her home.
NEW YORK (AP) - There's little wonder why George Orwell's novel "1984" is seeing a resurgence in sales.
CHICAGO (AP) - The generation that's grown up posting their lives online wants a little privacy. That's not what we might expect as we debate just how much access the government should have to our mobile and online lives.
SAN DIEGO (AP) - A San Diego-area teacher says she is losing her job for being the victim of domestic violence.
NEW YORK (AP) - Law enforcement officials nationwide are demanding the creation of a "kill switch" that would render smartphones inoperable after they are stolen, New York's top prosecutor said Thursday in a clear warning to the world's smartphone manufacturers.
POLICE: THIEF GETS STUCK IN MUD AFTER BURGLARY: FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) - Police say a man who robbed a Foxborough home had to call a tow truck after getting stuck in the mud while making his getaway.
LIMA, Ohio (AP) - The convicted killer of three Ohio students at a high school cafeteria escaped from a Lima prison Thursday, and a search was underway, police said.
JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) - More than two dozen children and two adults accidentally drank a mixture of bleach and water at a day care center Thursday and were briefly hospitalized.
BLACKSTONE, Mass. (AP) - Police have arrested and charged a woman in connection with the living conditions at the Massachusetts home where the bodies of three infants were found.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Opening a new military front in the Middle East, President Barack Obama authorized U.S. airstrikes inside Syria for the first time Wednesday night, along with expanded strikes in Iraq as part of a broad mission to root out the violent Islamic State militants whose reign of terror has spread across both countries.
BOSTON (AP) - In a photo he posted on Twitter, Kwmaine Davis had a big smile on his face as he held one gun in each hand at a shooting range. His message to his followers: "Yes, I'm really bout that action."
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A lawyer for a Kentucky man who spent several days in jail after posting violent song lyrics on Facebook says he should be cleared of a felony charge.
WASHINGTON (AP) - An extreme solar flare is blasting its way to Earth and could mess up some power grids, satellites and radio transmissions, scientists say.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Earth's protective ozone layer is beginning to recover, largely because of the phase-out since the 1980s of certain chemicals used in refrigerants and aerosol cans, a U.N. scientific panel reported Wednesday in a rare piece of good news about the health of the planet.
THERMAL (AP) - A Southern California high school has changed its nickname from the Arabs to the Mighty Arabs and has adopted a logo with a nobler image, school officials announced Wednesday.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - T-Mobile will sell more than 100 smartphone models with a built-in feature that taps into Wi-Fi networks to make phone calls and send texts when customers can't connect to the wireless carrier's cellular network.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Rosemary Anderson could be 81 by the time she pays off her student loans. After struggling with divorce, health problems and an underwater home mortgage, the 57-year-old anticipates there could come a day when her Social Security benefits will be docked to make the payments.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The Gadsden County sheriff was accused Tuesday of allowing inmates - including violent felons - out of jail without court permission for short periods so they could visit with family or meet girlfriends in motel rooms.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - In the latest dispute over public lands in the West, New Mexico ranchers are suing the federal government over its attempts to limit their cattle's access to water and grazing areas after a tiny mouse won endangered species protections in the Southwest.
CAMDEN, Ala. (AP) - A man is suspected of killing his five children in South Carolina and then driving all the way to Alabama before dumping their bodies on a dirt road and fleeing to Mississippi, authorities said. Following his arrest, he led police to the site where the lifeless children were found wrapped in individual plastic bags.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - An ex-nurse who admitted going online and encouraging people to kill themselves was convicted Tuesday of assisting the suicide of an English man and attempting to assist in the suicide of a Canadian woman, following a legal battle that has spanned more than four years and led to the reversal of part of a Minnesota law that outlaws the practice.