On Wednesday President Obama announced a series of proposals to address gun violence. The day before, the National Rifle Association, which opposes the president's ideas, released a Web ad that stoked controversy, particularly because the ad focuses on Obama's daughters.
The national unemployment rate spiked following the 2008 financial crash, and it has remained stubbornly high ever since. Unfortunately, it has been even worse for returning American servicemembers. Today, though, Wal-Mart announced a plan to hire 100,000 veterans over the next five years.
UPDATE 4:07 p.m. EST: Authorities have identified the gunman as William Spengler, an ex-convict who spent 17 years in prison for murdering his 92-year-old grandmother in 1980.
Spengler was paroled for the crime in 1998.
Police also have not located Spengler's 67-year-old sister, who lived in the house with Spengler.
Authorities also report that a total of seven houses were destroyed in the blaze.
UPDATE 12:40 p.m. EST: Police chief Gerald Pickering says that the gunman, who was killed at the scene, either by police or from a self-inflicted wound, may have set a trap for first responders.
UPDATE 12:15 p.m. EST: The Associated Press is reporting that the gunman who killed the two firefighters is also dead. His body was found at the scene. The names of the two deceased firefighters, according to the Democrat and Chronicle, are Mike Chiapperini, 43, a volunteer firefighter and the Webster Police Department’s public information officer, and Tomasz Kaczowka. The names of the wounded firefighters are Joseph Hofsetter and Theodore Scardino.
Early Monday morning two firefighters were shot and killed when responding to a call in Webster, New York, just outside Rochester. After the firefighters arrived at 191 Lake Road, an unknown shooter fired at them as they left their truck, killing two of them and wounding two others. The wounded men are at a nearby hospital; one is in stable condition, the other is in guarded condition.
Wayne LaPierre, the executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, read a statement Friday morning in reaction to last week's shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut. He called for installing armed guards in schools to prevent future gun violence against students.
In the wake of the horrific killings at Sandy Hook Elementary School last week, Americans across the country are wondering how they can aid the families of the victims. There are numerous methods to donate money, but you also can help in other ways, such as volunteering your time, writing a card or letter, or sending a teddy bear to a child in Newtown.
NOTE: This post will be continually updated as new information comes in. Video and photos are below. All times Eastern.
UPDATE 6:30 p.m.: Originally it was thought that Adam Lanza, the gunman, shot his mother at the Sandy Hook Elementary school, where she was a teacher's aide. ABC has learned that, in fact, Nancy Lanza was killed at her home (by her son) prior to the massacre. He then drove to the school, where he killed 20 children and six adults, before killing himself.
When something like the horrific shooting spree at Sandy Hook Elementary School happens, the major sports we follow can suddenly feel a bit smaller. But world-class athletes who normally seem bigger than life watched today's events unfold just like the rest of us, on TV, and shared their thoughts just like the rest of us, on social media.
We read some of their reactions on Twitter and collected them here:
General David Petraeus, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, resigned today, citing a recent extramarital affair. President Obama, elected to a second term just days earlier, accepted Petraeus's resignation and praised his leadership
In a federal court today in Tuscon, Arizona, Jared Loughner received a life sentence without parole for his shooting rampage in January 2011 that killed six people and wounded 13, including then-U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D.-Ariz.).
UPDATE 11:20: The networks have announced that Barack Obama will be reelected to a second term, after wrapping up the state of Ohio.
The 2012 presidential election between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will finally conclude tonight, as voters head to their local polls to choose who gets to sleep in the White House on January 20, 2013. We'll be following all the results very closely, adding the latest news as states close their polls and announce their winners.
Watch this post for updated information—election results, Senate races, ballot measures, battleground-state news—throughout the night:
A man drove from Long Island, New York, into Lower Manhattan earlier today in a van he thought was filled with explosives. He parked the van close to the Federal Reserve building, just a few blocks from the World Trade Center, and planned to detonate it using a cell phone from a nearby hotel.
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