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The man accused of opening fire at an Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago legally bought five weapons, including two high-powered rifles. Authorities said Tuesday that the purchases were allowed even though police were called to his home twice in 2019 for threats of violence and suicide. The suspect was charged with seven counts of murder. Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart promised that dozens more charges would be sought and that the man could receive a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole. The assailant sprayed more than 70 rounds from a rooftop into a crowd in Highland Park, an affluent community of about 30,000 on the Lake Michigan shore.

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For many people, the mass shooting that killed at least seven people and injured 30 others in a Chicago suburb on July 4 was yet another reminder that any place, any event in the U.S. can turn dangerous or deadly. Highland Park is one of the country’s safest towns, and July 4th parades among the most American of celebrations. Even before Monday’s killings, some people already were on edge, questioning whether to venture into large gatherings, looking over their shoulders during even the most run-of-the-mill activities, from grocery shopping to going to school or catching a movie.

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Evacuation orders have been expanded for remote communities near a wildfire that's chewing through California forests. The Sierra Nevada Gold Country fire tripled in size to more than 4.7 square miles Tuesday. The fire erupted on the Fourth of July at a recreation area packed with people. Between 85 to 100 celebrating at a river were forced to take shelter at a Pacific Gas & Electric Co. facility. Amador County Sheriff Gary Redman says they were safely evacuated. Evacuations are in place for parts of Amador and Calaveras counties. Redman suggested fireworks or a barbeque as a possible fire cause.

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The parents of a 2-year-old boy who got lost during the July 4 parade shooting in suburban Chicago are among the seven people who were killed, authorities said as friends and family mourned their lost loved ones. Officials say 37-year-old Kevin McCarthy and 35-year-old Irina McCarthy, 35 were fatally shot while watching the parade in Highland Park, a Chicago suburb. Their son, Aiden, became separated from them in the chaos. Authorities identified four others who died as Katherine Goldstein, 64; Jacquelyn Sundheim, 63; Stephen Straus, 88; and Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza, 78. Every victim was from Highland Park except for Toledo-Zaragoza, who was living with his family in the city but originally came from Morelos, Mexico. Officials haven’t identified the seventh victim.

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The Dallas Cowboys sparked criticism on social media after announcing a marketing agreement with a coffee company that sells blends with names like “AK-47 Espresso” and “Murdered Out.” News of the partnership with the Black Rifle Coffee Company came one day after more than a half-dozen people died in a shooting at a Fourth of July parade in suburban Chicago. Black Rifle's founder is a U.S. Army veteran who has made support of veterans one of the tenets of the company. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has been a steadfast supporter of the military.

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A Mississippi judge has rejected a request by the state’s only abortion clinic to temporarily block a state law that would ban most abortions. Judge Debbra K. Halford rejected the request Tuesday. Attorneys argued over abortion laws in three Southern states in response to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that gave states the power to limit or outlaw the termination of pregnancies. Elsewhere, Florida’s new 15-week abortion ban was blocked but then quickly reinstated Tuesday. In Louisiana, the state attorney general has asked the state Supreme Court to allow enforcement of a ban on most abortions.

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Brittney Griner’s appeal to President Joe Biden in a handwritten letter continued to garner reaction Tuesday after the WNBA All-Star acknowledged she feared never returning home and asked Biden not “forget about me and the other American Detainees.” Griner’s letter was delivered through her representatives to the White House on Monday and officials say the president has read it. However Griner’s wife, Cherelle, said Tuesday on a morning talk show that she hadn’t heard from Biden. The Phoenix Mercury center and two-time Olympic gold medalist is in the midst of a trial in Russia that began last week after she was arrested on Feb. 17 on charges of possessing cannabis oil while returning to play for her Russian team. The trial will resume Thursday.

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The Great Salt Lake has hit a new historic low for the second time in less than a year as the ongoing megadrought worsened by climate change continues to shrink the largest natural lake west of the Mississippi. Utah Department of Natural Resources said Monday in a news release the Great Salt Lake dipped Sunday to 4,190.1 feet (1,277.1 meters). That is lower than the previous historic low set in October, which at the time matched a 170-year record low. Water has been diverted away from the lake for years for homes and crops in the nation’s fastest-growing state.

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The fight between Texas and New Mexico over the management of one of the longest rivers in North America could be nearing an end. New Mexico’s attorney general says Tuesday that a trial date has been put off by a special master appointed by the U.S. Supreme Court since the parties agreed to continue settlement negotiations. The years-long battle over the Rio Grande has become a multimillion-dollar case in a region where water supplies are dwindling amid increased demand and climate change. The Rio Grande through parts of New Mexico marked record low flows earlier this year.

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The first of three Kentucky police officers killed in an ambush last week has been laid to rest. Dozens of uniformed officers attended the funeral Tuesday for Floyd County Deputy William Petry. Petry and two Prestonsburg city police officers were killed while serving a warrant at a home in the county. Floyd Sheriff John Hunt says Petry loved law enforcement, the job and the people. He says he is a hero who will never be forgotten. The man arrested in the officers' deaths, 49-year-old Lance Storz, was taken into custody after family members helped police secure his surrender Thursday night.

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The Georgia prosecutor investigating the conduct of former President Donald Trump and his allies after the 2020 election is subpoenaing U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani to testify before a special grand jury. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis on Tuesday filed petitions with the judge overseeing the jury as part of her investigation into what she alleges was “a multi-state, coordinated plan by the Trump Campaign to influence the results of the November 2020 election in Georgia and elsewhere.” The move marks a major escalation in a case that pose a serious legal challenge to the former president as he weighs another White House run.

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The latest act of mass violence to hit the U.S. has focused attention on Highland Park’s 2013 ban on semi-automatic weapons and large-capacity magazines. The clampdown survived a legal challenge that ended at the U.S. Supreme Court’s doorstep in 2015 when justices declined to hear the case. Police say a gunman used a high powered weapon “similar to an AR-15" when he opened fire on an Independence Day parade Monday in the northern Chicago suburb, killing seven people and wounding more than 30.

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Italy endured a prolonged heat wave before an Alpine glacier broke off and killed seven hikers and left others unaccounted for. Hotter temperatures are linked to climate change and can destabilize glaciers, although it is difficult to name climate change as the cause of specific events. Experts said higher temperatures make ice avalanches more likely and that melted ice and snow may have triggered the event. Drought conditions may also have helped loosen the ice's hold on the mountain slope. The avalanche occurred in the Dolomites in northeast Italy.

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Brian Dahle is the California Republican Party's longshot hope to defeat Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. Dahle is a state senator from the sparsely populated northeast corner of the state. He finished second in last month's primary and will face Newsom in November. Newsom's campaign says Dahle is a Trump Republican who wants to abolish abortion rights and repeal California's gun safety laws. Dahle says his record is more nuanced. He plans to focus on the problems he says Californians care about the most, including high gas prices and rising crime. Republicans have not won a statewide seat in California since 2006.

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Major stock indexes shook off an early slump and ended with meager gains on Wall Street Tuesday as worries about the economy continue to weigh on markets. Oil prices slumped, bringing the price of U.S. crude back below $100 a barrel for the first time since early May. Tech stocks staged a turnaround and ended higher. The S&P 500 eked out a gain of 0.2% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 1.7%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average remained in the red, losing 0.4%. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which helps set mortgage rates, fell to 2.82%.

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A federal judge will this week sentence former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for federal civil rights violations in the killing of George Floyd. Judge Paul Magnuson on Tuesday set Chauvin’s sentencing for 2 p.m. Thursday in St. Paul. Chauvin’s plea agreement calls for a sentence of 20 to 25 years. Federal prosecutors last month asked for 25, saying his actions were cold-blooded and needless. Chauvin pleaded guilty in December, admitting for the first time that he knelt on Floyd’s neck resulting in his death. He has already been sentenced to 22 1/2 years on state murder and manslaughter charges.

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European Council President Charles Michel has urged North Macedonia to back a French-proposed compromise on ending a dispute with neighboring Bulgaria that’s blocking the country’s long-delayed European Union accession bid. Violent protests erupted in North Macedonia’s capital, Skopje, where demonstrators tried to storm government buildings, after French President Emmanuel Macron announced the proposal — which many in the small Balkan country find controversial — last week. Macron said at a NATO summit in Madrid that “a compromise solution” to lift Bulgaria’s opposition to its neighbor’s EU aspirations had been achieved, without giving details. A few hundred people held a new protest in Skopje late Tuesday. Police intervened to end minor violence.

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Scores of people watching a Fourth of July fireworks show in Philadelphia ran for cover when gunshots rang out shortly after the show had started. The gunfire forced them to leave behind strollers and other personal items as they sought refuge from what many feared was someone shooting into the crowd. Two Philadelphia police officers working at the event suffered graze wounds in the gunfire Monday in front of the Philadelphia Art Museum. The shooting came just hours after another holiday shooting in suburban Chicago left at least six people dead and at least 30 wounded.

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Officials in Texas say more than half of the 53 migrants found dead or dying in a tractor-trailer last week in San Antonio have been identified. The youngest among them was 13 years old. That's according to officials in Bexar County, where the trailer was found abandoned on a backroad. County officials say they're still waiting confirmation on the identifications of 18 victims, more than a week after the nation’s deadliest smuggling attempt.

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After more than four months of ferocious fighting, Russia claimed full control over one of the two provinces in Ukraine’s eastern industrial heartland. But Moscow’s seizure of the last major stronghold of Ukrainian resistance in Luhansk province came at a steep price. The critical question now is whether Russia can muster enough strength for a new offensive to complete its capture of the Donbas and make gains elsewhere in Ukraine. There are signs Russia is sustaining heavy losses. That raises doubts about whether Moscow’s forces and their separatist allies are ready to quickly thrust deeper into Donetsk, the other province that makes up the Donbas.

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The trial for a lawsuit accusing three major U.S. drug distributors of causing a health crisis throughout West Virginia has been postponed. Tuesday's continuance came a day after the companies prevailed in another case. A Kanawha County Circuit Court judge granted a continuance to attorneys representing more than 100 cities and counties statewide in their case involving AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson. On Monday, the companies prevailed in a federal court case brought against them by the city of Huntington and Cabell County. The attorneys representing Huntington and Cabell County are also representing the other municipalities.

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Prosecutors say R. Kelly is no longer on suicide watch following the jailed R&B singer's sentencing in a federal sex abuse case. Kelly’s attorneys had claimed last week that he was placed on suicide watch as a form of punishment last week after a judge sentenced him to 30 years behind bars for using his fame to sexually exploit women and girls. In a court filing on Tuesday, prosecutors said prison officials had found the measure was no longer needed. The 55-year-old Kelly has denied wrongdoing and plans to appeal his conviction.

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Tennessee judges have dismissed a lawsuit filed by a couple who alleged that a state-sponsored Christian adoption agency refused to help them because they are Jewish. The lawsuit challenged a 2020 state law that installed legal protections for private adoption agencies to reject state-funded placement of children to parents based on religious beliefs. The challenge by Elizabeth and Gabriel Rutan-Ram said Holston United Methodist Home for Children in Greeneville barred them from taking state-mandated foster-parent training and denied a home-study certification while they attempted to adopt a child last year. The panel's 2-1 decision last week centered on legal standing, including that the couple has since fostered a child. An appeal is expected.

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Police in suburban St. Louis say a 70-year-old man who grew frustrated caring for his disabled 63-year-old sister beat her, leading to her death. Police say Anthony Sokolich on Sunday called medics and officers to his home in an unincorporated part of St. Louis County, saying his sister was unresponsive. Police say officers found Katherine Sokolich with serious injuries to her face, and she was taken to a hospital with a brain bleed. Police say the woman died after Anthony Sokolich was arrested and charged with felony assault on Sunday. Police say they expect his charges to be upgraded. Prosecutors have not returned a phone call seeking comment, and no attorney is listed for Sokolich in online court records.

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The fossilized skeleton of a T. rex relative that roamed the earth about 76 million years ago will be auctioned in New York this month. The Gorgosaurus skeleton will highlight Sotheby’s natural history auction on July 28. The Gorgosaurus was an apex carnivore that lived in what is now the western United States and Canada during the Late Cretaceous period. It predated its relative the Tyrannosaurus rex by 10 million years. The specimen being sold was discovered in 2018 in the Judith River Formation near Havre, Montana. It measures nearly 10 feet (3 meters) tall and 22 (6.7 meters) feet long.

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Pennsylvania’s Republican nominee for governor, Doug Mastriano, often makes the baseless allegation that Gov. Tom Wolf’s policy of readmitting COVID-19 patients from hospitals to nursing homes caused thousands of deaths. It's a claim for which no investigator or researcher has provided any evidence. In fact, researchers point to something entirely different. They say nursing home employees ushered in the virus every day to the buildings. Meanwhile, criminal investigators found administrators flouting staffing requirements or infection-control procedures. No Pennsylvania nursing home has leveled a claim like Mastriano's. And readmissions were routine in every state during the pandemic to keep hospital beds open. Wolf’s office says Mastriano’s claims are “patently false.”

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After two pandemic summers, many families are venturing back into what they hope will be a more normal summer-camp experience. Kids can feel trepidation going to in-person camp after two years of hybrid school schedules and learning online. Camping experts say parents at home can smooth the way. They encourage parents to communicate with camp directors about how their child handles adversity and what strategies tend to help. They also advise parents not to focus their letters on how much they miss their kids. Instead, tell them how excited you are about the experiences they must be having and encourage them to just have fun. And crucially: Prepare them in advance about any policies limiting the use of phones and other devices.

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Rising prices can feel impossible to manage if money is already tight. To stay afloat, prioritize essential expenses that enable you to live and work. If you can’t cover those bills, seek support through programs such as Findhelp.org and 211. Your neighbors, family members and other community members may be able to help, too. Look for opportunities to split expenses, score free or cheap goods and services, and learn from others’ experiences. Your community can also vouch for you if you explore side work to boost your income. As you try these tips, take time to protect your mental health, in whatever way works for you.

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Nate Looney is a Black man who is also an observant, kippah-wearing Jew. As a person of color, he has had to deal with suspicious looks and double takes in synagogues. Looney is now in a new role to promote inclusivity and security for people of color at the Jewish Federations of North America. His mission is important at a time when the numbers of Jews of color are increasing in America and so are antisemitic attacks. A recent survey showed about 8% of U.S. Jews identify as nonwhite, but that nearly doubles to 15% in younger respondents ages 18 to 29.

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Gardening when there's severe drought means setting priorities. Conserving water is always a good thing but it becomes non-negotiable when state and local governments enforce restrictions. AP gardening writer Jessica Damiano says that if you plan ahead you can use rain barrels or xeriscaping or plant native plants. At this point in the season you should focus on the plants you want to help most. Newly planted trees and shrubs need deep and regular watering. Older trees also can suffer from drought. And you'll probably want to save perennials. Watering the garden early in the morning is best. Invest in soaker hoses or drip irrigation instead of sprinklers. Use recycled household water. And keep the soil mulched and weed-free.

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Mahalie Wilson lives in the shadow of Detroit's massive and vacant former Packard auto plant and says she has learned to just “deal with” her foreboding brick neighbor. But after years of fighting with one owner after another, the city aims to raze part of the building and possibly find other uses for the rest. Detroit and other cities are looking to get rid of large eyesores to open up those spaces for redevelopment. For Detroit, that could mean rebuilding now mostly Black neighborhoods that thrived when factories were built decades ago and before the whites who worked in them moved away.

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After the U.S. Supreme Court revoked the federal right to abortion that’s been in place for half a century, companies like Amazon, Disney, Apple and JP Morgan pledged to cover travel costs for employees who live in states where abortion is now illegal so they can terminate pregnancies. But they gave no details on how they will do this and it’s not clear if they will be able to — legally — while protecting employees’ privacy and keeping them safe from prosecution.

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Would-be financiers of a planned oil pipeline in Uganda and Tanzania will be in breach of benchmark guidelines on financing big infrastructure projects if they go ahead, according to a report shared with The Associated Press. There are fears the 900-mile East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline, which will take three years to build and cost $3.5 billion, could result in an environmental disaster, with accusations of human rights abuses happening already. Companies involved in the project say they're taking the necessary steps to address environmental and humanitarian challenges. Many Ugandan officials and analysts see the pipeline as a chance an opportunity to lift millions out of poverty.

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The Chicago White Sox talked to Major League Baseball about postponing their game against the Minnesota Twins after a gunman opened fire on an Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago, killing at least six people. After the team's contact with MLB and local authorities, the game began on time. The postgame fireworks show was canceled, and a moment of silence was observed before the first pitch.

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Police say a gunman on a rooftop opened fire on an Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago, killing at least six people, wounding at least 30 and sending hundreds of marchers, parents with strollers and children on bicycles fleeing in terror. Authorities said 21-year-old Robert E. Crimo III was named as a person of interest in the shooting and was taken into police custody Monday evening after an hourslong manhunt. The July 4 shooting was just the latest to shatter the rituals of American life. Schools, churches, grocery stores and now community parades have all become killing grounds in recent months.

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Independence Day celebrations in the United States have been rattled by a shooting that left at least six people dead at a parade in Illinois. The shooting further rocked a nation already awash in turmoil over high court rulings on abortion and guns as well as hearings on the Jan. 6 insurrection. Police say at least 30 other people were wounded in the attack in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park. Authorities brought a person of interest into custody Monday evening. The latest mass shooting came as the nation tried to find cause to celebrate its founding and the bonds that still hold it together.

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A detention center in the wind-swept California desert town of Adelanto could house nearly 2,000 migrants facing the prospect of deportation. These days, it’s nearly empty. The facility is an extreme example of how the U.S. government’s use of guaranteed minimum payments in contracts with private companies to house immigrant detainees can have a potential financial downside. The U.S. government pays to guarantee 30,000 immigration detention beds in four dozen facilities, but so far this fiscal year about half of them on average have been occupied, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement data. In the last two years, immigration detention facilities across the United States have been underutilized as authorities needed to space out detainees due to COVID-19.

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A federal judge has ruled in favor of three major U.S. drug distributors in a landmark lawsuit filed in West Virginia. Judge David Faber issued the ruling Monday nearly a year after closing arguments were held in a bench trial in a lawsuit filed by Cabell County and the city of Huntington. The suit accused AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson of causing a health crisis by distributing 81 million pills over eight years in a county ravaged by opioid addiction. Faber says that while the opioid crisis has taken a considerable toll, such cases should be decided on the facts and the law, not sympathy.

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Chile’s Constitutional Convention has presented the formal draft of a proposed constitution to the president, who has set a plebiscite for Sept. 4. The charter is meant to replace the constitution imposed by a military dictatorship 41 years ago and remake the country's structure. But the ceremonial handover Monday to President Gabriel Boric comes at a time when Chileans appear to be increasingly skeptical of the proposed constitution. Polls at the beginning of the year showed a clear majority of Chileans intended to vote in favor of it, but surveys since April have shown a marked change in opinion, with those who oppose the new document appearing to be ahead. That could change again. More than three-quarters of voters in a 2020 referendum backed giving Chile a new constitution.

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Frankfurter-munching phenom Joey “Jaws” Chestnut has gobbled his way to a 15th win at the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July hot dog eating contest. Chestnut powered down 63 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes Monday at the annual exhibition of excess. Women's record-holder Miki Sudo took the women’s title after skipping last year’s frank fest because she was pregnant. Sudo downed 40 wieners and buns in 10 minutes to notch her eighth victory. A spectator wearing a Darth Vader mask momentarily disrupted the competition by rushing the stage. Chestnut put the protester in a brief chokehold before contest officials escorted the intruder away.

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Authorities in Virginia say the 17-year-old daughter of Toronto Blue Jays first base coach Mark Budzinski died in a tubing accident in Richmond over the weekend. A spokesperson for the Department of Wildlife Resources says Julia Budzinski was one of two girls who fell off a tube being pulled behind a boat on the James River on Saturday. As the boat operator returned to get the girls out of the water, the boat hit a wave. That caused it to be pushed on top of Budzinski and striking her with the propeller. Budzinski was a rising senior at Glen Allen High School who played soccer and other sports.

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The number of U.S. flights being canceled is slowing down, but plenty of travelers are facing long delays as they try to get home from trips over the July Fourth holiday weekend. By late Monday afternoon on the East Coast, more than 2,200 U.S. flights had been delayed and more than 200 were canceled, according to FlightAware. The good news is, that's fewer delays and cancellations than we've seen in recent days. Industry experts say airlines are struggling because demand for travel has recovered from the bottom of the pandemic faster than anyone expected. That's causing airports to be almost as crowded as they were in 2019, before the pandemic.

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Sacramento police say a man has been killed and four men were wounded in a shooting outside a downtown nightclub. Police Chief Kathy Lester told the Sacramento Bee that authorities received a call about shots fired shortly before 2 a.m. Monday after patrons left a club. Authorities say the victims were taken to hospitals where one was pronounced dead. Police say identified the man who died as as 31-year-old Gregory Grimes. Police released little information about the incident and are asking witnesses to come forward with additional information. Authorities did not immediately identify suspects in the shooting.

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Across the U.S. West, rural residents have historically faced barriers in accessing abortion, such as long travel distances and lack of transportation. Now, abortion providers serving rural areas are concerned those pre-existing challenges could be further compounded by the overturning of Roe v. Wade, as more patients travel to their clinics from states where the procedure is now banned or greatly restricted. In Oregon, the sole Planned Parenthood clinic serving the eastern half of the state is hiring more staff in expectation of an influx of patients from neighboring Idaho, where a trigger law banning most abortions is expected to take effect this summer.

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A shooting at a Fourth of July parade near Chicago is the latest incidence involving gun violence to stun the United States. Authorities say at least six people died and 24 were injured on Sunday when a gunman apparently opened fire on parade-goers from a rooftop using a rifle. The most deadly incident since May happened when a gunman killed 19 children and two adults at a school in Uvalde, Texas, on May 24. And on May 14, a racist attack led to the deaths of 10 African Americans at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.

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Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear says flags at state buildings will be lowered to half-staff in honor of three officers who were killed when a man with a rifle opened fire on police attempting to serve a warrant. Beshear said in a new release that flags will be lowered Tuesday morning and remain at half-staff until sunset Thursday in remembrance of Floyd County sheriff’s deputy and Martin City fire Chief William Petry, Prestonsburg police Capt. Ralph Frasure and Prestonsburg police Officer Jacob Chaffins. The three were killed Thursday night in an hourslong standoff at a home in Allen, a small town in the hills of Appalachia in eastern Kentucky.

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A person used a flamethrower to set fire to a Pan-African flag flying on a pole outside the headquarters of a Black international socialist group based in Florida. Security video released by the Uhuru Movement shows the driver of a white sedan pulling up outside the group’s St. Petersburg headquarters on Saturday morning. The driver pulls a flame thrower from the trunk and shoots a tower of fire at the flag flying 30 feet above the ground. The group says the driver stopped when a worker inside the building yelled at him. The video shows the person putting the flamethrower back in the trunk and then driving away. Police are investigating.

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Amber Heard’s lawyers have asked a judge to throw out the $10.35 million verdict against her in the defamation case filed by ex-husband Johnny Depp. In post-trial motions filed last week, Heard's lawyers argued that the jury’s verdict was not supported by the evidence. They also claim that one of the jurors may not have been properly vetted by the court. Heard’s attorneys call the jury’s June 1 award of $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages to Depp “excessive” and “indefensible.” They ask the judge to set aside the verdict and dismiss Depp’s lawsuit or order a new trial. The judge reduced the punitive damages to $350,000 immediately after the verdict to comply with a state cap.

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Authorities say a Black man was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of gunfire, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again. Akron police released video Sunday of the pursuit and killing of 25-year-old Jayland Walker. The mayor called the June 27 shooting “heartbreaking” while asking for patience from the community. It isn't yet clear how many shots were fired by the eight officers who were involved, but Walker sustained more than 60 wounds.

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The rent has come due for America’s small businesses and at a very inopportune time. Landlords were lenient about rent payments during the first two years of the pandemic. Now, many are asking for back rent, and some are raising the current rent as well. Meanwhile, most aid programs for small businesses have ended, while inflation has sharply pushed up the cost of supplies, shipping, and labor. Thirty-three percent of all U.S. small businesses could not pay their May rent in full and on time, up 5% from April, according to a survey from Alignable, a small business referral network.

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As workers at major companies increasingly move to unionize, the political environment for labor couldn’t be more ripe. Perhaps nowhere is that more accurate than at the National Labor Relations Board. The agency’s top prosecutor, Jennifer Abruzzo, is seeking to overturn prior precedents and revive decades-old labor policies that supporters say would make it easier for workers to form a union. To get her wish, Abruzzo must have buy-in from the five-member board, whose Democratic majority is expected to be sympathetic to her proposed changes. But any such shifts in how the agency enforces labor law is likely to be reversed under a Republican administration and met with fierce resistance from employers in federal court.