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Thursday, December 18, 2014

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Local News

Boeing IMAX Theater due for an upgrade
One of two IMAX theaters at Pacific Science Center will close for renovations in early January 2015. Thu, 12/18
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.  Wed, 12/17

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. Wed, 12/17
State health exchange withholds money to Deloitte over repeated problems
Problems with the performance of the Washington Healthplanfinder website have led to friction between the state’s health-insurance exchange and its primary contractor, Deloitte. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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.” Wed, 12/17
Seattle cops getting a new look
Seattle police are ditching their two-tone blue uniforms and replacing them with solid navy-blue slacks and shirts. Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
Times series wins major multimedia award
A Seattle Times multimedia project about acidification of the Pacific Ocean, has won a duPont award — an honor considered the equivalent to a Pulitzer Prize.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17

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Nation & World

UPDATE - 03:09 AM
US, Cuba patch torn relations in historic accord
After a half-century of Cold War acrimony, the United States and Cuba moved on Wednesday to restore diplomatic relations -- a historic shift that could revitalize the flow of money and people across the narrow waters that separate the two nations. Thu, 12/18

UPDATE - 03:20 AM
Sony cancels 'The Interview' amid terror hack threats
Under the threat of terrorist attacks from hackers and with the nation's largest multiplex chains pulling the film from their screens, Sony Pictures Entertainment took the unprecedented step of canceling the Dec. 25 release of the Seth Rogen comedy "The Interview." Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:20 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. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:21 AM
Australian leader: Siege may have been preventable
Australia's prime minister said Thursday that a deadly siege in a Sydney cafe may have been preventable, as the chorus of critics demanding to know why the gunman was out on bail despite facing a string of violent charges grew louder. Thu, 12/18
$10 million in stolen Los Angeles art recovered
Authorities have recovered $10 million worth of art -- including paintings by Chagall and Diego Rivera -- that were stolen in one of Los Angeles' largest art heists. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:20 AM
Sony emails show a studio ripe for hacking
In the weeks before hackers broke into Sony Pictures Entertainment, the studio suffered significant technology outages it blamed on software flaws and incompetent technical staffers who weren't paying attention, even as hackers targeted executives to trick them into revealing their online credentials. Thu, 12/18
Police: 1 dead, several hurt in California crash
A female motorist hit a group of pedestrians outside a California church as a Christmas service ended, killing one person and leaving up to 11 others injured, police said. Thu, 12/18
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. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:14 AM
AP source: US probe links NKorea to Sony hacking
Federal investigators have now connected the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. to North Korea, a U.S. official said Wednesday, though it remained unclear how the federal government would respond to a break-in that exposed sensitive documents and ultimately led to terrorist threats against moviegoers. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:06 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. Thu, 12/18
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." Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:06 AM
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. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:30 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. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:21 AM
AP Exclusive: Sydney hostage planned daring escape
The siege at the Sydney cafe had been going on for more than five hours and 82-year-old John O'Brien had become convinced the gunman was insane and they would likely all end up dead. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:21 AM
Canada man finds woman for free trip around world
A Toronto man who made headlines last month by offering a free round-the-world air ticket to a woman with the same name as his ex-girlfriend has found Ms. Right. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:21 AM
Pakistan buries victims of school massacre
As they buried their children Wednesday, the families spoke of their dreams. One boy had just gotten high marks on his midterm and hoped to become a pilot. A 13-year-old wanted to become a doctor. Another kid just loved playing video games with his cousins. Thu, 12/18
Charlie Brown tree teaches struggling city a beautiful lesson
It turns out Reading, Pa.’s much-ridiculed Christmas tree wasn’t bad at all. It just needed a little love. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Promising stroke treatment pulls blood clots directly from brain
One reason the treatment worked, researchers suspect, is that doctors used a new type of snare to grab blood clots. Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
Canadian finds right woman to use free world-trip air ticket
Jordan Axani posted his offer last month on the popular Reddit social-media website and received thousands of emails, including 18 from actual Elizabeth Gallaghers with Canadian passports. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
American Kennel Club adds 4 new dog breeds
A Spanish farm and fishing dog, a Sicilian rabbit-hunting breed, an Italian sheepdog with a distinctive matted coat and a rugged South African watchdog are joining the American Kennel Club pack. Wed, 12/17
Missouri school takes cane from blind student, 8
A Missouri school district has apologized to the family of a blind student whose cane was replaced with a swimming pool noodle after he allegedly misbehaved on the bus. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Afghanistan: Suicide bomber kills policeman
An Afghan police officer was killed and another three wounded on Thursday when a suspected suicide bomber they were following detonated the explosives in his vehicle, an official said. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17

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Business & Technology

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.  Thu, 12/18
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. Thu, 12/18

UPDATE - 02:54 AM
Sprint accused of billing for unwanted services
Federal regulators are accusing Sprint Corp. of illegally billing its wireless customers hundreds of millions of dollars in charges for text message alerts and other services that they didn't order. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 03:20 AM
Fed rate wording boosts world stock markets
World 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. Thu, 12/18
UPDATE - 02:54 AM
Dish adds Netflix app to some of its set-top boxes
Dish is making it easier to watch video from an online rival, Netflix. Thu, 12/18
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17

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UPDATE - 03:33 AM
49ers release McDonald amid further legal trouble
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. Thu, 12/18
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 Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Mariners acquire Justin Ruggiano from Cubs
The Mariners announced they acquired Justin Ruggiano from the Cubs in exchange for minor league reliever Matt Brazis.  Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Chattanooga knocks off No. 7 Stanford women
Chelsey Shumpert scored a career-high 18 points, including five three-pointers, as Chattanooga stunned No. 7 Stanford 54-46 Wednesday for its second home victory over a top-10 opponent this season. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Grizzlies beat Spurs in 3 OTs
Marc Gasol scored 26 points, including a banked-in three-pointer as regulation expired, and the Memphis Grizzlies overcame blowing a 23-point lead for a 117-116 triple-overtime victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday night. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Prep boys swimming: Five swimmers and five teams to watch
Newport returns state meet placers Andrew Pana, Dave Makharvoks, Will Dittig and Aaron Elhajj.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Huskies demolish visiting Grambling State by 48 points, 86-38
The Huskies are 9-0 after one of the most lopsided wins in school history. Wed, 12/17

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.  Wed, 12/17
Live chat with UW guard Nigel Williams-Goss
 Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
On the Air
 Wed, 12/17
Wednesday’s prep gymnastics results
Results for Wednesday, Dec. 17 Wed, 12/17
Tuesday’s prep wrestling results
Results for Tuesday, Dec. 16 Wed, 12/17
Wednesday’s prep wrestling results
Results for Wednesday, Dec. 18 Wed, 12/17
Statewide prep basketball scores
Basketball scores for the week of Dec. 15 Wed, 12/17

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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. Thu, 12/18
The most notable restaurant closures (and happy reopenings) of 2014
The Seattle culinary gods giveth and taketh away. Wed, 12/17

'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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Country singer Boyd crowned 'The Voice' champion
Country fans have spoken again. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17
Community calendar: festivals, fairs and more
A detailed, categorized calendar of events all over Seattle and Western Washington, Dec. 19-25, 2014. Wed, 12/17
Happy Hour
Top 10 bars for Christmas Day cheer
Season’s greetings. Have a drink. Wed, 12/17

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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. Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17

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Travel & Outdoors

Walk in the park yields winning photo
Gloria Nagler’s keen eye spots striking image of a common bird. Wed, 12/17

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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.  Wed, 12/17
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.  Wed, 12/17
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. Wed, 12/17

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