Steve Karnowski/AP, File
Weeks before the 2016 election, federal officials started making mysterious calls to the head of elections in Inyo County, California. They asked her to contact them if she noticed anything unusual. But they wouldn't elaborate.
"I asked them: 'How am I going to be able to protect against it if I don't know what it is?'" said the official, Kammi Foote.
Now, Foote communicates regularly with federal officials. They came to her small county of about 10,000 registered voters to analyze the security of her ballot system. She participates in state and federal information-sharing groups that didn't exist two years ago and is getting a sensor that can help detect unwanted intrusions.
Jacquelyn Martin/AP, File
President Donald Trump acknowledged Thursday it "certainly looks" as though missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is dead, and he threatened "very severe" consequences if the Saudis are found to have murdered him. His warning came as the administration toughened its response to a disappearance that has sparked global outrage.
Before Trump spoke, the administration announced that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had pulled out of a major upcoming Saudi investment conference and a U.S. official said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had warned the Saudi crown prince that his credibility as a future leader is at stake.
President Donald Trump says it "certainly looks" as though missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is dead.
President Donald Trump praised Rep. Greg Gianforte, R-Mont., Thursday for physically assaulting a reporter during a House race last year — remarks that come amid calls for Trump to hold Saudi Arabia responsible for the disappearance and apparent killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
"Never wrestle him," Trump said of Gianforte at a campaign rally in an airplane hangar in Missoula, Montana, NBC News reported. "Any guy that can do a body slam, he's my guy."
Gianforte pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault last year after he laid hands on Ben Jacobs, a reporter for The Guardian, and was sentenced to 40 hours of community service, 20 hours of anger-management counseling and payment of a $385 fine.
The Guardian's U.S. editor, John Mulholland, said in a statement provided after the rally, "to celebrate an attack on a journalist who was simply doing his job is an attack on the First Amendment by someone who has taken an oath to defend it."
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The Pentagon has confirmed that U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Jeffrey Smiley was shot in a Taliban attack that killed two Afghan leaders in Kandahar province last week.
AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File
Twitter suspended a network of suspected Twitter bots on Thursday that pushed pro-Saudi Arabia talking points about the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the past week.
Twitter became aware of some of the bots on Thursday when NBC News presented the company with a spreadsheet of hundreds of accounts that tweeted and retweeted the same pro-Saudi government tweets at the same time.
The list was compiled by Josh Russell, an Indiana-based information technology professional who has previously identified foreign influence campaigns on Twitter and Reddit.
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Santa Ana Police Department
A 55-year-old Anaheim man was charged Thursday with murder for allegedly killing a friend in a Santa Ana, California, motel.
Milton Louis Mayfield is accused in the death of 55-year-old Deborah Ann Simon, whose body was found shortly after 5 a.m. Tuesday at the Sunshine Village Motel, said Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
Administration emails show that President Donald Trump intervened personally to keep FBI headquarters in downtown Washington rather than relocate it to the suburbs as had long been planned, congressional Democrats said Thursday.
The letter from Democratic lawmakers on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform says Trump's direct involvement presents a brazen conflict of interest.
Near FBI headquarters, Trump owns the Trump International Hotel, which could face competition if the FBI's current location is opened to private redevelopment, which could include another hotel.
Before running for office, Trump expressed interest in redeveloping the property himself.
Prince Harry scaled the Sydney Harbor Bridge on Friday to raise a flag marking the arrival of the Invictus Games, his brainchild and the focus of his current royal tour of Australia and the South Pacific.
Bullit Marquez/AP, File
An U.S. Navy helicopter crashed on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan on Friday, causing non-fatal injuries to sailors, the Navy said.
The Navy's 7th Fleet said in a statement that the MH-60 Seahawk crashed shortly after takeoff Friday morning while the carrier was off the Philippine coast.
All affected sailors were in stable condition and their injuries were non-life threatening, the Navy said. It didn't say how many sailors were hurt. It said some of them would be examined and treated after they reach the shore, though officials did not specify the destination.
As some 3,000 Hondurans made their way through Guatemala, attention turned to Mexico, after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened Thursday to close the U.S.-Mexico border if authorities there fail to stop them — a nearly unthinkable move that would disrupt hundreds of thousands of legal freight, vehicle and pedestrian crossings each day.
With less than three weeks before the Nov. 6 midterm elections, Trump seized on the migrant caravan to make border security a political issue and energize his Republican base.
"I must, in the strongest of terms, ask Mexico to stop this onslaught — and if unable to do so I will call up the U.S. Military and CLOSE OUR SOUTHERN BORDER!" Trump tweeted, adding that he blamed Democrats for what he called "weak laws!"
Rescuers helped three manatees return to Tampa Bay after Hurricane Michael’s high tides trapped them in a Florida pond.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images, File
It looks like this winter could be a bit warmer than usual, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Winter Outlook unveiled Thursday.
NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center’s Winter Outlook for December through February foresees above-average temperatures as a likelihood across the northern and western parts of the United States, as well as Alaska and Hawaii.
NOAA Climate Prediction Center notes that even during a warmer-than-average winter, periods of cold temperatures and snowfall are likely to occur. Its seasonal outlooks do not project snowfall accumulations, though; those typically are not predictable more than a week in advance.
California will reconsider life sentences for up to 4,000 nonviolent third-strike criminals by allowing them to seek parole under a ballot measure approved by voters two years ago, according to court documents obtained by The Associated Press on Thursday.
The state parole board estimates between 3,000 and 4,000 nonviolent third-strikers could be affected, said corrections department spokeswoman Vicky Waters, "but they would have to go through rigorous public safety screenings and a parole board hearing before any decision is made."
An arsonist ambushed Oregon firefighters by torching his own house then shooting a rifle at the first responders, authorities said Thursday.
Lance Taylor Jacobs, 60, eventually turned the gun on himself and ended the brief standoff early Wednesday morning in Springfield, Oregon, police said.
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