WASHINGTON (AP) - The Homeland Security Department abruptly reversed course Wednesday and dropped plans to ask a private company to give the government access to a nationwide database of license plate tracking information.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Vice President Joe Biden said Wednesday that it would be a good start for the federal health care law if 5 million to 6 million people sign up by the end of March, an acknowledgement that enrollments might fall significantly short of the Obama administration's unofficial goal of 7 million.
DENVER (AP) - Colorado's legal marijuana market is far exceeding tax expectations, according to a budget proposal released Wednesday by Gov. John Hickenlooper that gives the first official estimate of how much the state expects to make from pot taxes.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A middle-school football coach was charged Wednesday with first-degree murder in the death of a 10-year-old girl who was snatched off a street just blocks from her southwest Missouri home as several residents watched in horror.
TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - In what may be the first college donation of the new electronic currency, a Bitcoin entrepreneur has donated $10,000 worth of the digital money to a Washington state liberal arts college.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A West Virginia pizza restaurant has been shut down after a district manager was caught on surveillance video urinating into a sink.
MENLO PARK (AP) - Facebook is buying mobile messaging service WhatsApp for $19 billion in cash and stock, by far the company's largest acquisition and bigger than any that Google, Microsoft or Apple have ever done.
NEW YORK (AP) - Visa and MasterCard are introducing Internet-based technologies to make it easier for shoppers to buy things at retail stores without pulling out a credit card.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Marlboro maker Altria Group Inc. said Wednesday that it plans to expand its MarkTen electronic cigarette brand nationally in the second quarter.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Should shoppers turn off their smartphones when they hit the mall? Or does having them on lead to better sales or shorter lines at the cash register?
BERLIN (AP) - Germans, once a nation of ardent automobile enthusiasts, are not buying cars as much as they used to. Instead, they're sharing them.
PALO ALTO (AP) - Tesla Motors Inc. shares soared in extended trading after the electric car maker delivered a strong fourth-quarter performance and said that it expects sales of its vehicles to increase sharply this year.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Jackpots like Wednesday's anticipated $400 million-plus Powerball can grant a lot of wishes. But what if you were the only winner, and you had but one chance to blow all that money on a single purchase?
uKANSAS BILL WOULD ALLOW SPANKING THAT LEAVES MARKS: TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - A Kansas lawmaker is proposing a bill that would allow teachers, caregivers and parents to spank children hard enough to leave marks.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - An 84-year-old nun was sentenced Tuesday to nearly three years in prison for breaking into a nuclear weapons complex and defacing a bunker holding bomb-grade uranium, a demonstration that exposed serious security flaws at the Tennessee plant.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - One thing the creator of "Breaking Bad" finds bad is fans who have been throwing pizzas at the New Mexico home that was featured on the show.
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Two police officers were shot outside the Ferguson Police Department early Thursday as protesters gathered following the resignation of the city's embattled police chief, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A vote by Utah lawmakers to bring back executions by firing squad is the most dramatic illustration yet of the nationwide frustration over bungled executions and shortages of lethal-injection drugs.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Once a wanton wiener dog, Dennis went on a diet and is now a happy shadow of his former self after losing more than 75 percent of his body weight.
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - The police chief in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson resigned Wednesday in the wake of a scathing Justice Department report prompted by the fatal shooting of an unarmed black 18-year-old by a white police officer.
SEATTLE (AP) - Warm temperatures and a lack of snowfall in February have taken a toll on winter snowpack in the Cascade Mountains and other areas in the West, the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service said Wednesday.
FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) - An Army officer admitted to a military tribunal Wednesday that he betrayed his role at Fort Hood as an advocate for victims of sexual abuse by organizing a prostitution ring at the sprawling Central Texas base.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government is taking the nation's biggest satellite TV provider to court, accusing DirecTV of misleading millions of consumers about the cost of its programming.
NEW YORK (AP) - A powdered alcohol intended to be mixed up into drinks has gained approval from a federal regulator.
EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AP) - Searchers struggled Wednesday to find the seven Marines and four soldiers killed when a helicopter crashed, hampered by the same fog that plagued a nighttime training mission.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Lawmakers have passed a bill that would make Utah the only state to allow firing squads for carrying out a death penalty if there is a shortage of execution drugs.
CASA GRANDE, Ariz. (AP) - An Arizona sheriff's department says some of the marijuana bales that suspects tossed out of an SUV during a high-speed chase last week got picked up by passing vehicles.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Scientists are virtually certain that California will be rocked by a strong earthquake in the next 30 years. Now they say the risk of a mega-quake is more likely than previously thought.
BALTIMORE (AP) - The American Civil Liberties Union and other groups sued the National Security Agency and the Justice Department on Tuesday, challenging the government's practice of collecting personal information from vast amounts of data harvested directly from the Internet's infrastructure.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - A man whose fatal stabbing of a K-9 prompted Pennsylvania lawmakers to stiffen the penalty for harming police animals has been sentenced to up to 44 years in prison.