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Nation & World Briefs


Tuesday, November 14, 2017
Donald Trump Jr. had private messages with WikiLeaks

WASHINGTON — Evidence that President Donald Trump’s eldest son exchanged private messages on Twitter with WikiLeaks has raised new questions about the Trump campaign’s communications.

The private messages released by Donald Trump Jr. on Monday show him responding to the WikiLeaks’ Twitter account three times, at one point agreeing to “ask around” about a political action committee WikiLeaks had mentioned. He also asked the site about a rumor about an upcoming leak, and tweeted a link that the account sent him.

WikiLeaks released hacked emails from top Democratic officials during the 2016 presidential campaign, including thousands stolen from the account of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta.

In an intelligence assessment released in January, the NSA, CIA and FBI concluded that Russian military intelligence provided the hacked information from the Democratic National Committee and “senior Democratic officials” to WikiLeaks.

Gunman picking random targets kills 4 in Northern California

RED BLUFF, Calif. — A gunman choosing targets at random opened fire in a rural Northern California town Tuesday, killing four people at several sites and wounding others at an elementary school before police shot him dead, authorities said.

The gunfire began around 8 a.m. in the community of Rancho Tehama Reserve, about 130 miles north of Sacramento.

Police offered no immediate word on the assailant’s motive, but a sheriff’s official said the shooter’s neighbors had reported a domestic violence incident.

“It was very clear at the onset that we had an individual that was randomly picking targets,” Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said.

Witnesses reported hearing gunshots and children screaming at an elementary school about five miles down a road from where the shooting is believed to have started.

French to set age of consent

PARIS — Is a 13-year-old old enough to agree to sex with an adult? That’s a question France is asking as the government prepares to set a legal age for sexual consent for the first time.

Twice in recent weeks, French courts have refused to prosecute men for rape after they had sex with 11-year-old girls because authorities couldn’t prove coercion.

Amid the public disbelief over the situation, the French government is drafting a bill to say that sex with children under a certain age is by definition coercive.

Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet provoked consternation among feminist groups Monday by saying a legal minimum age of 13 for sexual consent “is worth considering.”

Activists staged a small protest Tuesday in central Paris to argue that the age of consent should be set at 15. Protesters waved placards that read “for him impunity, for her a life sentence” in reference to the recent cases.

“We want the law to guarantee that before 15 there can be no concept of consent,” prominent French feminist activist Caroline de Haas said.

Is gun-maker liable for Newtown? Court takes up the case

HARTFORD, Conn. — Newtown school shooter Adam Lanza heard the message loud and clear when gun-maker Remington Arms marketed an AR-15-style rifle as an overpowering weapon favored by elite military forces, a lawyer for relatives of some victims of the massacre told the Connecticut Supreme Court on Tuesday.

Lanza, who killed 20 first-graders and six educators with a Bushmaster XM15-E2S on Dec. 14, 2012, was obsessed with violent video games and idolized the Army Rangers, attorney Joshua Koskoff said.

Koskoff asked the high court to reinstate a wrongful death lawsuit against Madison, N.C.-based Remington.

He said the Bushmaster rifle and other AR-15-style firearms were designed as military killing machines and are too dangerous for the public, but Remington glorified them and marketed them to a younger demographic that included the 20-year-old Lanza.

“Adam Lanza heard the message,” Koskoff told the justices, whose decision isn’t expected for several months. “They marketed the weapon for exactly what it was. They used images of soldiers in combat. They used slogans invoking battle and high-pressure missions.

“Remington may never have known Adam Lanza, but they had been courting him for years,” he said.

From Associated Press