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.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - An Oklahoma man who was seriously injured by a line drive during a 2006 high school baseball game isn't entitled to a nearly $1 million award from the manufacturer of the bat used to hit the ball, a federal appeals court ruled Monday.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A suspended South Carolina state trooper threatened to use a Taser on Cincinnati Bengals defensive lineman Sam Montgomery during a traffic stop last week for speeding.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - An Alabama woman was sentenced Monday to a year on probation to cap a bizarre case in which a trucker enlisted her and two others to help him hide a small fortune he found stuffed in coffee cans inside an elderly man's garage.
• UTAH MAN SENT TO JAIL FOR FIGHT OVER CHURCH SEATS: OGDEN, Utah (AP) - A 52-year-old man accused of punching another man and hitting him with his car in a dispute over pew space in Utah has been ordered to spend 30 days in jail.
BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) - President Barack Obama will seek more than $2 billion to respond to the flood of immigrants illegally entering the U.S. through the Rio Grande Valley area of Texas and ask for new powers to deal with returning immigrant children apprehended while traveling without their parents, a White House official said.
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York state can end its three-decade HIV crisis by the year 2020, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday as he announced an ambitious plan to deliver a knockout blow to the epidemic by boosting testing, reducing new infections and expanding treatment.
BOSTON (AP) - The first of four friends of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is set to go on trial on charges he impeded the investigation into the deadly attack.
SEATTLE (AP) - A cruise ship that returned to Seattle after a fire in its boiler room left the port again on Sunday morning.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Two men exchanged gunfire early Sunday on the city's always-crowded Bourbon Street in the celebrated French Quarter and nine people were shot in the crossfire, including two who were critically wounded, police said.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Authorities on Sunday were investigating how a metal security grate detached and fell from the facade of an Italian ice shop, killing a 3-year-old girl in front of dozens of people who tried to rescue her.
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - Atlantic City started the year with 12 casinos. By Labor Day, it could be down to nine.
DETROIT (AP) - Massive chunks of concrete hang menacingly from what remains of an upper floor at a gutted building at the vacant Packard car plant, a time-decayed symbol of Detroit's finer things and luxury vehicles.
PRINCETOWN, N.Y. (AP) - When Maggie McNally-Bradshaw and husband Curt hop on their electric motorcycles and twist the throttles, they get a rush like no other.