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US judge: No asylum for Afghan soldier who fled training

An immigration judge denied asylum Friday for an Afghan military officer who sneaked away from a U.S. training exercise in Massachusetts to avoid returning to Afghanistan, where he said he had been threatened by the Taliban.

Teen killed by police previously cited for resisting arrest

A 17-year-old girl who was shot to death by Denver police while driving a stolen car was accused in a separate incident of eluding a police officer and resisting arrest just three weeks before her death, court records obtained Friday show.

Smoking in Big Easy bars, gambling halls to end in April

In three months it will no longer be legal to smoke in bars and while gambling in the Big Easy.

Thumb bones in pre-humans make them more like us, study says

Some of our tree-swinging pre-human ancestors may have been a bit more like us than previously thought, thanks to a tiny section of their thumbs.

A sneaky snake: Teams hunt for rock pythons in Everglades

For all the danger posed to Florida’s Everglades by invasive Burmese pythons, there’s one thing researchers don’t want to know: how they would interact with another python species that threatens to move into the same territory.

IS hostage drama shows change in propaganda technique

The latest Islamic State hostage drama involving a veteran Japanese war correspondent and a young Jordanian pilot marks the first time the group has publicly demanded prisoner releases.

Jordan awaits proof hostage is alive after swap deadline

The fates of a Japanese journalist and Jordanian military pilot were unknown Friday, a day after the latest purported deadline for a possible prisoner swap passed with no further word from the Islamic State group holding them captive.

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Africans open new front in war on terror to fight Boko Haram

Schoolgirls torn from their families in a mass kidnapping and forced into sexual slavery. Bombs that ripped through bus stations. The slaughter of hundreds of villagers, many with their throats cut.

Romney not running: Former GOP nominee out of 2016 race

Mitt Romney ended his rollercoaster return to presidential politics on Friday, declaring his party would be better served by the “next generation of Republican leaders” and concluding his unlikely comeback as suddenly as it began.

FDA approves ADHD drug for binge-eating disorder

Federal health regulators have approved an attention deficit disorder drug for a new use: A first-of-its kind treatment for binge-eating disorder.

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Rap music mogul 'Suge' Knight arrested in fatal hit-and-run

Marion "Suge" Knight, the impresario of gangster rap, has long been a perpetrator and victim of the violent life he promoted in song. On Friday, he was portrayed as both.

Balloon crew makes history crossing Pacific Ocean

A pair of American and Russian pilots has traveled farther and longer in a gas balloon than anyone in history, trying to eliminate any remaining debate over a century of records in long-distance ballooning.

Barbie blues gave Mattel holiday disappointment

Slumping sales of Barbie did little to bring a happy holiday to her maker, Mattel Inc.

Shake Shack shares more than double in stock market debut

Wall Street went wild for burgers Friday. Shares of Shake Shack, a burger chain that started as a New York City hot dog cart, more than doubled in their first day of trading.

Stocks sag at the close; January finishes on weak note

The U.S. stock market capped a rough month Friday, delivering its third loss in five days and extending its declines for the year.

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Some doctors won’t see patients with anti-vaccine views

With California gripped by a measles outbreak, Dr. Charles Goodman posted a clear notice in his waiting room and on Facebook: His practice will no longer see children whose parents won’t get them vaccinated.

Balloon crew surpasses distance record in Pacific flight

Two pilots soaring over the Pacific Ocean made history Thursday, first matching and then surpassing the 5,209-mile official world distance record for human flight in a gas balloon.

‘Anonymized’ credit card data not so anonymous, study shows

Credit card data isn’t quite as anonymous as promised, a new study says.

Police: Family killed man over child custody dispute

A woman and her family lured her estranged husband to their home by offering to let him see his children, then beat him in the head with a hammer and fatally shot him as he tried to run away — a scheme concocted because they were upset about a child custody dispute, according to police in South Carolina.

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Deadly San Francisco blaze spurs look at fire alarms

Residents fleeing a massive blaze that killed a man and injured five people as it ripped through a San Francisco building told officials they did not hear fire alarms and could not get to fire escapes.