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NEW - 12:05 AM

Boeing IMAX Theater due for an upgrade

One of two IMAX theaters at Pacific Science Center will close for renovations in early January 2015.

Inslee targets polluters with billion-dollar cap-and-trade plan

Gov. Jay Inslee on Wednesday laid out an ambitious plan for cutting Washington’s carbon emissions that would vault the state to the forefront of global efforts to combat climate change.

UPDATE - 11:04 PM

Soccer-team owner accused of sexual assault, harassment

TIMES WATCHDOG: The continued presence of Dion Earl with the Kent-based Seattle Impact FC raises questions about whether the Major Arena Soccer League conducted proper background checks on prospective team owners.

UPDATE - 11:27 PM

In Northwest, U.S.-Cuba thaw lauded as ‘amazing’

“All my life I have been hoping to hear a U.S. president say exactly what Obama said today,” said Fleites-Lear, a professor of foreign languages and literature who has many relatives in Cuba. “I almost can’t believe it.”

Jerry Large

Social failures trickle down to our prisons

Prisons absorb the results of failures in other systems but still could offer a chance to get it right.

Study: Very few use EpiPen, asthma inhalers correctly

EpiPens and inhalers can stop life-threatening allergic reactions or asthma attacks, but too few people use them correctly, a study finds. Seattle doctors and parents agree.

Seattle Housing Authority retreats on rent-raising proposal

The Seattle Housing Authority won’t move ahead with a plan to set rents based on household size and length of stay rather than income.

UPDATE - 12:23 AM

Larry Stone

Seahawks adept at creating calm out of chaos

With NFC West title likely on line Sunday at Arizona, Seahawks turn down volume on big game

Bud Withers

Chemistry and fresh talent again have Zags soaring

Gonzaga is eighth-ranked heading into Saturday night’s Battle in Seattle game against Cal Poly.

Mariners acquire Justin Ruggiano from Cubs

The Mariners announced they acquired Justin Ruggiano from the Cubs in exchange for minor league reliever Matt Brazis.

Seahawks must shore up sacks against Cardinals

The Seahawks won 19-3 in the first meeting despite giving up a season-high seven sacks, so protecting quarterback Russell Wilson will be a high priority Sunday night when they play the rematch against Arizona.

Seahawks’ Paul Richardson still working through kickoff returns

Paul Richardson looked like a promising kickoff returner at first, but it has been a slog for Richardson and the Seahawks’ kickoff return game, which ranks 30th in the NFL this week, averaging 20.6 yards per attempt.

UW football recruiting: Huskies reeling in in-state recruits

A rush of recruiting activity just before the start of a monthlong “dead period” this week has added optimism about the potential of the Washington Huskies’ Class of 2015.

Fishing report: Next stretch of razor clam digs come with high surf warning

A persistent strong west wind will develop a swell height of 20 to 25 feet that is expected to last through Sunday.

Lakeside’s Abrahm Devine looks to repeat as state champion / Boys swimming preview

The Stanford-bound senior will focus on getting back to the state meet, where he won two titles last February. His technique has been a focal point since he has yet to begin weight training.

Niners release Ray McDonald

Citing a pattern of behavior and off-field issues, San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke informed defensive lineman Ray McDonald that he was released Wednesday amid a sexual-assault investigation by San Jose police.

Prep boys swimming: Five swimmers and five teams to watch

Newport returns state meet placers Andrew Pana, Dave Makharvoks, Will Dittig and Aaron Elhajj.

Report: Michigan has offered Jim Harbaugh $48M deal

Michigan is apparently making a serious run at San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh to fill its open coaching position.

Seattle U women lose in overtime to Montana

After battling back from big deficit, Redhawks fail to get shot off at end of regulation then fall 70-64 in overtime.

UW football’s Hau’oli Kikaha named consensus All-American

Hau’oli Kikaha’s place among the Huskies’ all-time greats was etched in history on Wednesday when he became Washington’s sixth unanimous All-American. Offensive lineman Benji Olson, in 1996, was UW’s last unanimous All-American.

Washington State signs two JC players from California

Safety Shalom Luani and defensive end Jeremiah Mitchell will join the Cougars in time for the start of the spring semester.

Kohl Bauml leads Everett past Victoria in shootout, 7-6

Bauml gets a hat trick in regulation then scores the deciding goal in a shootout.

Stars shut out Canucks

Kari Lehtonen made 27 saves for his second shutout this season and the 29th of his career as the Dallas Stars defeated host Vancouver 2-0 on Wednesday night to extend the Canucks’ losing streak to five games.

NEW - 11:05 PM

Wednesday’s prep gymnastics results

Results for Wednesday, Dec. 17

NEW - 11:03 PM

Wednesday’s prep wrestling results

Results for Wednesday, Dec. 18

UPDATE - 11:06 PM

Statewide prep basketball scores

Basketball scores for the week of Dec. 15

NEW - 12:01 AM

Urban, Touchstone combine forces in real estate

Urban Renaissance Group, a leading real-estate investment manager, has acquired Touchstone, a commercial developer with projects in South Lake Union and other city hotspots.

UPDATE - 12:41 AM

How Kim Jong Un became the target of 'The Interview'

A few weeks ago, when a freshly stoned Seth Rogen sat down for a lunch interview about "The Interview," the likelihood of trouble seemed remote.

UPDATE - 12:08 AM

Stocks with exposure to Cuba rise sharply

A batch of stocks with exposure to Cuba rose sharply Wednesday after President Obama moved to restore diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Caribbean island after more than 50 years of hostility.

UPDATE - 12:18 AM

Napster co-founder to invest in allergy research

Napster co-founder Sean Parker missed most of his final year in high school and has ended up in the emergency room countless times because of his deadly allergy to nuts, shellfish and other foods.

UPDATE - 12:30 AM

US travel industry carefully eyeing Cuba tourism

Cuba was once a haven for sun-seeking American tourists. Beautiful beaches, lively casinos and late-night dancing made it the perfect getaway, only an hour's flight from Miami.

UPDATE - 12:18 AM

Fed rate wording boosts Asian stock markets

Asian stock markets powered higher Thursday, sweeping aside worries about a flagging global economy after the U.S. Federal Reserve said it would remain "patient" in its approach to raising interest rates.

Tech investors plowing money into future farms

Silicon Valley is pushing its way into every stage of the food-growing process, from tech tycoons buying up farmland to startups selling robots that work the fields to hackathons dedicated to building the next farming app.

Why does state's jobless rate keep rising? Brighter prospects

The Seattle-Bellevue-Everett area saw a slight decrease in the unemployment rate, to 4.7 percent from 4.8 percent in October.

Obstacles remain for selling local spuds or jets to Cuba

Washington state is a long way from Cuba, but it could become a modest market for the state’s agricultural products and airplanes once trade policies and banking restrictions are normalized.

Cash-strapped Indian airline SpiceJet grounded

Low-cost Indian airline SpiceJet grounded all flights Wednesday after oil companies stopped supplies of jet fuel to the financially beleaguered carrier.

Russians flock to stores to pre-empt price rises

Russian consumers flocked to the stores Wednesday, frantically buying a range of big-ticket items to pre-empt the price rises kicked off by the staggering fall in the value of the ruble in recent days.

Fed promises ‘patient’ approach to rate hikes

Federal Reserve stands pat on keeping key interest rate near zero for considerable time. And, it lowers inflation forecast for 2015.

McDonald's in Japan limits orders of fries due to West Coast port slowdowns

Only small fries with that? McDonald's in Japan is limiting the serving size of fries as stocks run short due to labor disruptions on the U.S. West Coast.

FedEx misses Street 2Q forecasts, but profit jumps 23 pct

FedEx's second-quarter earnings soared 23 percent, but the package delivery company missed Wall Street forecasts due partially to a lower-than-expected benefit from falling fuel prices.

Island heritage: Open relations make sense for Cuba, U.S. and writer’s family

Commentary: The U.S. is a natural economic partner; American investment may be Cuba’s best hope as Russia and Venezuela lose power as oil prices decline. The thawing evokes the possibility of a Caribbean Vietnam — a free-market country with a single-party state.

Senate OKs nominees and tax bill as term ends

The Democratic-controlled Senate confirmed the last batch of President Barack Obama's judicial appointees and sent the White House legislation extending tax breaks for working-class millions and special interests alike late Tuesday as Congress ended a tumultuous two-year run.

Upgrades at US border crossing thrill commuters

Motorists at the nation's busiest border crossing were accustomed to waiting hours while vendors paraded between lanes with everything from sliced papaya and hot oatmeal to sombreros and ceramic mugs. Now, thanks to a $741 million construction project, they may not have enough time to lower their windows and order a cappuccino.

Army's blimp-like airships get East Coast test

The Army showed off a blimp-like airship Wednesday that is designed to help the military detect and destroy cruise missiles speeding toward the nation's capital or other major East Coast cities.

More layoffs as slowdown at West Coast ports continues

Once the longshoreman and maritime association reach an agreement, it would take another four to six weeks of normal port productivity to work through the backlog.

Ruble volatile as Russians rush to stores

The Russian government looked at ways of easing the selling pressure on the ruble Wednesday amid fears the country may face a full-blown bank run and as consumers look to buy big-ticket items before prices rise.

US consumer prices fell 0.3 percent in November

Plunging gasoline costs pulled U.S. consumer prices lower in November, muting inflation across the entire economy.

US current account deficit rises to $100.3 billion

The U.S. current account trade deficit widened slightly in the July-September quarter, largely due to foreign institutions paying less in fines and penalties to the U.S. government.

Beijing to get third airport to reduce congestion, delays

China has green-lighted a third airport for the capital Beijing in a bid to reduce congestion and chronic delays, state media reported Wednesday.

In final 2014 push, Congress renews tax breaks

Banks, retailers, commuters and teachers will keep their temporary tax breaks for another year after Congress gave final approval Tuesday to a massive tax package affecting millions of businesses and individuals.

Russia's sinking economy becoming a global threat

Russia's suddenly escalating financial crisis risks spilling beyond its borders and endangering parts of the global economy.

Sony facing 2 suits by ex-workers over data breach

Sony Pictures Entertainment now faces two lawsuits from four former employees who claim the company did not do enough to prevent hackers from stealing nearly 50,000 social security numbers, salary details and other personal information from current and former workers.

UPDATE - 12:41 AM

'Stand your ground' defense fails in Montana murder trial

Just days before he shot to death a 17-year-old German exchange student, Markus Kaarma told hair stylists he had been waiting up to shoot some kids who were burglarizing homes.

UPDATE - 12:11 AM

Obama says people should 'go to the movies'

President Barack Obama says his administration is taking the cyberattack against Sony studios seriously. He says people should "go to the movies."

Cuba’s hopes for future fired up by historic pact

The changes in Cuba policy outlined by President Obama are expected to have a much more profound impact on Cuba than on the United States.

Swap of former Cuban intelligence agent at heart of U.S. deal

A former Defense Department official confirmed that the Cuban who worked as a spy for the CIA is Rolando Sarraf Trujillo, an expert on cryptography who worked at the Interior Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate.

Immigrants closer to driver's licenses in Arizona

Thousands of young immigrants moved a step closer to getting driver's licenses in Arizona when the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday rebuffed the governor's latest attempt to deny them the privilege.

Republican wins Arizona House seat after recount

Republicans will have their largest U.S. House majority in 83 years when the new Congress convenes next month after a recount in Arizona gave the final unresolved midterm race to a Republican challenger.

Obama: As a black man he's been mistaken for valet

He may be president now, but Barack Obama says he's a black man who has been mistaken for the valet and worries his daughters could face stereotypes.

Study: Alcatraz inmates could have survived escape

The three prisoners who escaped from Alcatraz in one of the most famous and elaborate prison breaks in U.S. history could have survived and made it to land, scientists concluded in a recent study.

UPDATE - 11:15 PM

14 charged in meningitis outbreak that killed 64

Federal prosecutors charged 14 people in a 2012 meningitis outbreak that killed 64 people nationwide in what authorities called the largest criminal case ever brought in the U.S. over contaminated medicine.

Judge: Boy, 14, shouldn't have been executed in SC

More than 70 years after South Carolina sent a 14-year-old black boy to the electric chair in the killings of two white girls in a segregated mill town, a judge threw out the conviction, saying the state committed a great injustice.

Police: Officer kills soldier who shot girl, 12

Phoenix police say an officer fatally wounded an 18-year-old soldier clad in fatigues who shot a young girl as he tried to get into her home.

Dentist suspended; patient died after teeth pulled

A dentist whose patient died after developing complications while getting 20 teeth pulled and several implants installed will not be allowed to work until after a comprehensive review of his practice.

Church of England appoints first female bishop

The Church of England on Wednesday named the first female bishop in its 500-year history, promoting saxophone-playing, soccer-loving vicar Libby Lane to bishop of Stockport.

Expert: Killing shows strict police vetting needed

The discovery that a Cleveland officer who shot and killed a 12-year-old boy last month had washed out at another police force highlights what some experts call an unnerving truth about policing: Departments don't always dig deeply enough into recruits' pasts.

NYC pushes for settlement in chokehold death

The city said Wednesday that it is trying to negotiate a settlement with Eric Garner's family as scores of defense attorneys protested the criminal justice system's handling of police killings of unarmed black men by participating in marches and die-ins.

LA mayor plans 7,000 police body cameras in 2015

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced a plan Tuesday to equip 7,000 Los Angeles police officers with on-body cameras by next summer, making LA's police department the nation's largest law enforcement agency to move forward with such an ambitious expansion of the technology.

Man unable to use arms faces gun possession charge

A man who can't use his arms because of a spinal condition is being held in jail while facing a gun possession charge his lawyer calls shocking.

No doubt now: Jeb Bush eyeing 2016 race

It's suddenly become crystal clear that Jeb Bush has his eye on the presidency.

Robin Williams tops 2014 list of Google searches

Robin Williams' suicide seared into the world's collective mindset more than anything else this year, based on what people were searching for on Google.

Cosby won't be charged over molestation claim

Los Angeles prosecutors on Tuesday declined to file any charges against Bill Cosby after a woman recently claimed the comedian molested her around 1974.

Documents reveal new details of Oklahoma execution

A federal hearing begins Wednesday over Oklahoma's attempts to resume executions nine months after a bungled lethal injection in which a death row inmate writhed on the gurney, mumbled and lifted his head after receiving a new drug combination.

Pope gets cake, tango and chicken for birthday

Pope Francis got a cake, cards and a tango demonstration for his 78th birthday Wednesday -- and 800 kilograms (1,760 pounds) of chicken meat for the poor.

Walker says he joked with rabbis about 'molotov' error

Gov. Scott Walker is trying to take his "Molotov" gaffe in stride.

Yemen's Shiite rebels close port, storm newspaper

Yemen's powerful Shiite rebels shut down a strategic Red Sea port on Wednesday, and stormed the offices of the country's main state newspaper, officials said.

Massachusetts baby born at 10:11, 12-13-14

A Massachusetts couple is celebrating the birth of their daughter with a numerically unusual birth time and date.

Aussie leader: Siege gunman dropped off watch list

A gunman responsible for a deadly siege in a Sydney cafe was once on the national security agency's watch list -- but was dropped off it years ago for reasons that remain unclear, Australia's prime minister said Wednesday.

Ex-Marine's suicide ends rampage, manhunt

An ex-Marine's suicide ended a violent rampage that left his ex-wife and five of her relatives dead a week after he lost a custody battle.

Family sues over fatal shooting at Ohio Wal-Mart

The family of a black man fatally shot by a white police officer as he held an air rifle inside a Wal-Mart filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday charging negligence and violation of the man's civil rights.

Pakistan school: Devastation where 148 were slain

The Taliban massacre that killed 148 people -- mostly children -- at a military-run school in northwestern Pakistan left a scene of devastation and carnage as the nation mourned and mass funerals for the victims got underway Wednesday.

Senate OKs nominees and tax bill as term ends

The Democratic-controlled Senate confirmed the last batch of President Barack Obama's judicial appointees and sent the White House legislation extending tax breaks for working-class millions and special interests alike late Tuesday as Congress ended a tumultuous two-year run.

Vatican offers olive branch to US nuns

A sweeping Vatican investigation into Roman Catholic nuns in the U.S. that began amid fears they had become too feminist and secular ended up praising the sisters for their selfless work caring for the poor -- a major shift in tone that reflected the social justice mindset of Pope Francis.

Editorial: Legislature should give school districts back control of federal funds

The state Legislature should act to return control of $40 million worth of federal funds to Washington’s school districts.

Guest: In a dangerous situation, the police and I made a critical decision to save a life

Here’s a case where the police did the right thing, writes guest columnist Stefan Ulstein.

As relationships move online, a dark vision of ‘Pottersville’ becomes real

The relationships they had in Bedford Falls in “It’s a Wonderful Life” that are often missing today are those between the very intimate and the quite distant, writes syndicated columnist Froma Harrop.

NEW - 12:05 AM

Movie review

Final ‘Night at the Museum’: a fitting Robin Williams farewell

A movie review of “Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb”: The gang from the original “Night at the Museum” is back for one last hurrah. Playing Teddy Roosevelt, the late Robin Williams gives the picture unexpected poignancy. Rating: 3 stars out of 4.

The most notable restaurant closures (and happy reopenings) of 2014

The Seattle culinary gods giveth and taketh away.

    'Saving Private Ryan' among films being preserved

    "Saving Private Ryan" and "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" are among 25 movies being inducted this year into the National Film Registry for long-term preservation, the Library of Congress announced Wednesday.

    Dining Deal

    Is this your new favorite Chinatown I.D. restaurant?

    Red Lantern is a little-known hero of inexpensive dining in the Chinatown International District.

    Country singer Boyd crowned 'The Voice' champion

    Country fans have spoken again.

    Dec. 17 TV Picks: ‘Michael Bublé’s Christmas in New York’

    TV picks for Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, include “Michael Bublé’s Christmas in New York” on NBC, “Survivor” on CBS and “American Horror Story: Freak Show” on FX.

    Weekend Highlight

    To do this weekend: Solstice strolls

    Things to do this week focus on walking: Visits to the Winter Solstice Park in Seattle and the Pacific Bonsai Museum’s Bonsai Solstice stroll in Federal Way, both on Dec. 21, plus Mount Rainier snowshoe walks start on Dec. 24.

    Community calendar: festivals, fairs and more

    A detailed, categorized calendar of events all over Seattle and Western Washington, Dec. 19-25, 2014.

    NYC premiere of Rogen film canceled as threats fly

    Threats of violence against movie theaters. The New York premiere of "The Interview" canceled. Leaks of thousands more private emails. Lawsuits by former employees that could cost tens of millions in damages.

    Happy Hour

    Top 10 bars for Christmas Day cheer

    Season’s greetings. Have a drink.

    NEW - 07:12 AM

    Dear Carolyn

    Son is caught in a controlling relationship

    Advice columnist Carolyn Hax: What he needs is a safe, nonjudgmental place to admit what’s going on at home.

    NEW - 08:30 AM

    It’s time to line up and make your holiday tamales

    Groups gather for tamaladas, an assembly line-style tamale production: Usually, one or two people spread the masa in corn husks, while others place the filling inside. A third folds the masa around the meat and makes the package in which the tamale will be steamed.