Tuesday, June 30
Time runs out on Greece bailout
ATHENS (AP) — Greece's international bailout has expired at 1 a.m. Tuesday, and with it any access the country could have to existing financing from its eurozone partners and the International Monetary Fund.
At the same time, the country defaulted on a roughly 1.6 billion euro IMF debt repayment, becoming the first developed country to fall into arrears on IMF payments.
The last country to do so was Zimbabwe in 2001.
AP Source: US, Cuba to announce embassy openings Wednesday
WASHINGTON (AP) — A senior Obama administration official says the U.S. and Cuba will announce the opening of embassies in Washington and Havana on Wednesday.
President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry will speak Wednesday morning about the major step in re-establishing diplomatic ties.
The official insisted on anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the announcement ahead of Obama.
Christie says he's running in 2016 to 'change the world'
LIVINGSTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is promising to tell voters the truth -- even if it makes them cringe.
Christie formally entered the Republican presidential race today with a rally in the gymnasium of his hold high school.
He lashed out at what he called "bickering leaders" from both parties, and said, "We need this country to work together again, not against each other."
Christie was once thought to be a leading White House contender, but his star has faded over the last year. He's been hurt by a traffic scandal involving senior aides and a lagging state economy.
He joins a GOP field that already includes more than a dozen candidates.
Federal report faults police actions during Ferguson unrest
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — A Justice Department report summary has found across-the-board flaws in police's response last summer to the protests in Ferguson, including antagonizing crowds and violating free-speech rights.
The Associated Press obtained the summary, which cites "vague and arbitrary" orders to keep protesters moving that violated their rights of assembly and free speech.
It is part of a longer "after-action" report that looked at the way police in Ferguson, St. Louis city and county and the Missouri State Highway Patrol responded in the first 16 days after 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by a Ferguson officer last August.
Top police officials at those four agencies will receive the full report this week. Details of the report summary were first reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Service honors last of 9 Charleston church shooting victims
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Public officials have paid tribute to longtime pastor Daniel L. Simmons Sr. in the last of the services for the nine victims of a shooting at a predominantly black Charleston church.
The Post and Courier of Charleston reports (http://bit.ly/1Jvnrdk) the three-hour service for Simmons drew an overflow crowd at Greater St. Luke AME Church.
Gov. Nikki Haley said the pain of the shootings won't stop just because it's the final service. Haley also told the audience that the Confederate flag will come down, adding that when it does, the families of the victims will be at peace.
Statue of Confederate Gen. Lee vandalized in Virginia
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee has been vandalized in Virginia.
According to media reports, police received a report early Tuesday that the words "Black Lives Matter" had been painted on the base of the statue, which depicts Lee on horseback. A city crew had removed the painted words by noon.
The Confederate battle flag and other symbols of the confederacy have been the focus of debate since the June 17 massacre at an African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina. The accused gunman had posed in photographs with the Confederate battle flag.
Last week, vandals painted the same sentiment found on the Charlottesville statute on a monument in Richmond dedicated to Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
White Texas man admits hate-crime attack on black man
HOUSTON (AP) — A white Houston-area man has pleaded guilty to a federal hate crime for the surprise punching of an elderly black man.
In federal court in Houston on Tuesday, Conrad Alvin Barrett admitted to racial motivation in the Nov. 24, 2013, attack on his 81-year-old victim.
Barrett used his cellphone to record the attack. The 29-year-old Katy, Texas, man also recorded himself questioning whether his attack on a black person would draw national attention.
After knocking the man to the ground, Barrett laughed, called out, "Knockout!" and ran to his vehicle.
The victim was hospitalized for several days for treatment of two jaw fractures.
Barrett could receive up to 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine when he's sentenced Sept. 18
Judge issues gag order in Texas biker shooting case
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — A judge has issued a sweeping gag order in a lawsuit arising from a May brawl at a roadside restaurant in Texas in which nine bikers were killed and 170 people arrested.
District Court Judge Matt Johnson also ruled Tuesday that an attorney can view surveillance video from the Twin Peaks franchisee in Waco, but barred it from public release. The ruling came in a lawsuit by a biker who says he was wrongfully arrested.
The Associated Press previously reviewed footage that showed that when gunfire erupted in the parking lot, most bikers ran inside the restaurant.
Waco police were on scene, and some fired their weapons. It remains unclear whose bullets struck the nine dead.
Johnson said he acted to prevent pretrial publicity from influencing potential jurors.
NEW: Family of immigrant killed by police gets documents
PASCO, Wash. (AP) — The family of an unarmed Mexican immigrant who was fatally shot by police in Washington state has been given forensic reports and other documents from the investigation into his death.
Authorities released the files to relatives of Antonio Zambrano-Montes on Tuesday, a day before they were to be released to the public.
The 35-year-old former orchard worker was shot Feb. 10 by three Pasco police officers. Authorities say he was throwing rocks at police and a stun gun failed to subdue him.
The Tri-City Herald reports ( http://bit.ly/1T3rPSK ) that attorneys for the Zambrano-Montes family said at a news conference that they have concerns about the investigation after meeting with Franklin County Prosecutor Shawn Sant.
The prosecutor is considering whether criminal charges are warranted, a process likely to take months.
Judge blocks new Florida law that delays abortions 24 hours
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida judge is blocking a new state law that requires women to wait 24 hours before getting an abortion.
Chief Circuit Judge Charles Francis blocked the law Tuesday, one day before it was scheduled to take effect.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida and the Center for Reproductive Rights filed a lawsuit after Republican Gov. Rick Scott signed it into law. They argued that the law violates the right to privacy guaranteed in the state constitution by interfering with the right of women to undergo the procedure.
Francis wrote that state officials had not given any evidence to show why the new law is not a burden on privacy rights. He said it did not matter that other states have a similar law because Florida's right to privacy is broader.
Connecticut eases penalties for most drug possession crimes
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut officials and policy experts say the state's drug laws will transform from some of the most draconian in the country to some of the most lenient this fall. That's when most drug possession crimes will become misdemeanors instead of felonies.
State lawmakers on Monday approved legislation proposed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on bipartisan votes. The effort is part of a movement in both liberal and conservative states to save hundreds of millions of dollars by decreasing prison populations.
The changes include eliminating a mandatory two-year prison term for possessing drugs within 1,500 feet of a school.
State officials estimate the new law will save Connecticut about $19 million in prison costs over the next two years by decreasing the prison population.