US Domestic News Roundup: Snowstorm blankets mid-Atlantic US; Texas tent city that holds migrant teens to close
Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.
Inner strength and luck: Abduction survivors reflect on Wisconsin girl's ordeal
Some abduction survivors think of their family to get through their ordeal, while others rely on their faith in God. All of them need inner strength and a great deal of luck, according to survivors and experts who have worked with such victims. Surely, Jayme Closs had her own well of fortitude, they said on Friday, celebrating the 13-year-old girl's escape from captivity three months after her parents were murdered in northwestern Wisconsin and she disappeared.
Key Republican to ask FBI about report of Trump counterintelligence probe
The Republican head of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee said on Sunday he plans to ask the FBI about a report it launched a probe into whether President Donald Trump has been working on Russia's behalf, suggesting the agency may have gone too far. "I am going to ask the FBI director - was there a counterintelligence investigation opened up regarding the president as being a potential agent of the Russians? I find it astonishing," Senator Lindsey Graham said on the "Fox News Sunday" program.
Snowstorm blankets mid-Atlantic U.S., at least seven dead in Midwest
A massive winter storm rolled eastward to the mid-Atlantic United States on Sunday after dropping more than a foot of snow on parts of the Midwest and killing at least 7 people in highway accidents on Saturday. The weather system, which started as rain from Mexico but has since turned into snow, is forecast to affect an 1,800-mile (2,900 km) swath of the United States from Colorado to the mid-Atlantic. Millions of Americans in ten states and Washington, D.C. were under a winter storm warning or advisory on Sunday.
A 13-year-old girl's escape from a rural home where she was held captive for three months by a Wisconsin man charged with murdering her parents helped break the case and she should be treated as a hero, the local sheriff said on Friday. Jayme Closs is with her aunt after her rescue on Thursday and has been reunited with the rest of her family and her dog, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald told reporters.
Republican Senator Graham urges Trump to open U.S. government temporarily
A Republican senator close to President Donald Trump on Sunday backed a temporary re-opening of the federal government, in the 23rd day of the longest shutdown ever, to allow for talks on a spending agreement that could satisfy Trump's border security demands. Democrats in Congress rejected Trump's request that legislation to fund the government include $5.7 billion of taxpayer money for a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico. They have refused further negotiations until the government is reopened after being partially shut down since Dec. 22.
Texas tent city that holds migrant teens to close
A tent city in Texas for migrant teens will close, the U.S. government said on Friday, and the children held in what had become a controversial symbol of President Donald Trump's migration policy will be transferred to sponsors or other shelters. The shelter in Tornillo, Texas opened in June to house migrant children, many of whom were Central Americans who crossed the border alone. Immigration advocates raised concerns about how long the minors were staying in the tents and some protesters had set up camp near the facility.
Florida governor suspends sheriff for response to school massacre
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on Friday suspended the local sheriff criticized for the police response to last year's mass shooting that left 17 dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. DeSantis said Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel showed leadership failures in the shooting that left 14 students and three adults dead at the hands of a lone gunman on Feb. 14, 2018.
U.S. medic declared Ebola-free, leaves Nebraska quarantine
A U.S. healthcare worker who was being monitored for the Ebola virus after treating patients in the Democratic Republic of Congo was released from a Nebraska hospital on Saturday after doctors said they had seen no signs of the deadly disease. The individual, whose name was not released for privacy reasons, did not develop Ebola symptoms during 21 days of monitoring at Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska, the center said in a statement.
Magnitude 5.0 quake strikes near Anchorage, Alaska
A 5.0 magnitude earthquake struck near Anchorage, Alaska, on Sunday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey said, with tremors felt as far as 120 miles (193 km) southwest of the state's capital city. Residents of southcentral Alaska were jolted awake by the quake, which was centered 9 miles (15 km) northwest of Anchorage and was over 20 miles (33 km) deep, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, which revised the quake down from a 5.4 magnitude.
Absences among U.S. airport screeners jump as shutdown drags on
Unscheduled absences among federal airport security screeners jumped on Sunday as a partial government shutdown that has frozen pay checks moved into its 23rd day. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the agency responsible for airport security screening, said unscheduled absences among its employees rose to 7.7 percent from 5.6 percent on Saturday. The rate is more than double the 3.2 percent rate experienced a year ago.
(With inputs from agencies.)