HOUSTON HOTEL DISPLAYS HALF-TON CHOCOLATE SANTA: HOUSTON (AP) - Santa Claus has come to town in Houston and he's sweeter than your average holiday fellow.
RENO, Nev. (AP) - A suicidal gunman opened fire at a Reno hospital campus Tuesday, killing one person, wounding two others and sending police on a door-to-door search within the facility amid the chaos.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) - President Barack Obama sent Russia a clear message about its treatment of gays and lesbians with who he is - and isn't - sending to represent the United States at the Sochi Olympics.
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - North Texas prosecutors are trying a second time to imprison a teen who was sentenced last week to 10 years' probation for drunkenly driving his truck into four pedestrians, killing them all.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Year-end legislation to ease Congress' chronic budget brinkmanship and soften across-the-board spending cuts moved to the cusp of final passage Tuesday, a rare display of Senate bipartisanship that masked strong Republican complaints about slicing into military retirement benefits.
NEW YORK (AP) - It's the ultimate fantasy: Walk into a store, plunk down a dollar, and with nothing but luck - really extraordinary luck - you win a giant lottery. Suddenly, you're rich as a sultan with enough money to buy an NBA team or your own island.
DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. (AP) - A Florida Wal-Mart employee faces charges after officials say he shot a co-worker's car window because she won an employee-of-the-month award.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - A Florida school board has decided to end a decades-long controversy and rename a high school now named for a Confederate general and honorary Ku Klux Klan leader that some historical records say ordered the execution of hundreds of black Union soldiers.
MAN TICKETED FOR TRYING TO TRADE GATOR FOR BEER: MIAMI (AP) - Florida wildlife officials say a man tried to trade a live alligator for beer at a Miami convenience store.
NEW YORK (AP) - Gallant guide dog Orlando was just doing his duty.
RENO (AP) - Family members rescued after spending about 48 hours in the frigid wilderness of northern Nevada last week spoke out publicly for the first time Monday, saying they don't think they would've lasted two more days out in the cold.
HELENA, Mont. (AP) - The hot molten rock beneath Yellowstone National Park is 2 ½ times larger than previously estimated, meaning the park's supervolcano has the potential to erupt with a force about 2,000 times the size of Mount St. Helens, according to a new study.
Congress targets fed workers' pensions
DALLAS (AP) - Good friends like Willie Nelson and Merle haggard got more credit for their contrary ways and trend-setting ideas, but it was Ray Price who set the precedent for change in country music more than a decade earlier.
CARMEL (AP) - Academy Award-winning actress Joan Fontaine, who found stardom playing naive wives in Alfred Hitchcock's "Suspicion" and "Rebecca" and also was featured in films by Billy Wilder, Fritz Lang and Nicholas Ray, died Sunday. She was 96.
PHOENIX (AP) - Gov. Jan Brewer on Wednesday vetoed a Republican bill that set off a national debate over gay rights, religion and discrimination and subjected Arizona to blistering criticism from major corporations and political leaders from both parties.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Republican lawmakers blasted the Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday for secretly monitoring the emails of agency scientists who went public with allegations that they were pressured to approve certain medical devices.
MIDLAND, Texas (AP) - Two police officers in an oil-rich West Texas city spent weeks competing to see who could take the most cardboard signs away from homeless people, even though panhandling doesn't violate any city law.
DENVER (AP) - A photo posted on Instagram that appeared to show a soldier deliberately avoiding saluting the flag touched off a military investigation and a storm of criticism.
STERLING, Conn. (AP) - Parents in a small eastern Connecticut town are demanding action by local officials after a man went to a school to pick up his great-grandson and took the wrong child home, possibly because the boys were wearing similar hats.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A U.S. appeals court ordered YouTube on Wednesday to take down an anti-Muslim film that sparked violent riots in parts of the Middle East and death threats to the actors.
WASHINGTON (AP) - A consulting firm that helped write an environmental review of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline complied with federal rules regarding possible conflict of interest, the State Department's inspector general said Wednesday in a report that buoyed supporters of the controversial pipeline and disappointed critics.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S5 smartphone will be at least the third to have a fingerprint sensor for security but it's alone in letting you use that for general shopping, thanks to a partnership with PayPal.
NEW YORK (AP) - J.C. Penney's turnaround seems to be getting some legs.
PALO ALTO (AP) - Electric car maker Tesla Motors said Wednesday it's considering sites in Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas for a massive battery factory that would employ around 6,500 people.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed suit Wednesday against a large, for-profit college chain alleging that it pushed students into high-cost private student loans knowing they would likely end in default.
CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) - As deaths from heroin and powerful painkillers skyrocket nationwide, governments and clinics are working to put a drug that can reverse an opiate overdose into the hands of more paramedics, police officers and the people advocates say are the most critical group - people who abuse drugs, and their friends and families.
ATLANTA (AP) - People who take Januvia, Byetta or certain other widely prescribed medicines for diabetes can breathe a little easier - U.S. and European regulators have found no compelling evidence of a link between these drugs and pancreas problems or pancreatic cancer.
FORT EUSTIS, Va. (AP) - Only a small fraction of Army women say they'd like to move into one of the newly opening combat jobs, but those few who do say they want a job that takes them right into the heart of battle, according to preliminary results from a survey of the service's nearly 170,000 women.
PHOENIX (AP) - Gov. Jan Brewer returned to Arizona on Tuesday and faced a pressing decision about a bill on her desk that has prompted a national debate over religious and gay rights.