LONG BEACH (AP) - Rick Blankenship was tired of an insatiable lawn he couldn't keep green, no matter how he watered it, so he decided to tear it out.
WASHINGTON (AP) - An American journalist kidnapped and held hostage for nearly two years by an al-Qaida-linked group in Syria was released Sunday, less than a week after the horrific execution of American journalist James Foley by Islamic militants.
NAPA, Calif. (AP) - The largest earthquake to hit the San Francisco Bay Area in 25 years struck before dawn on Sunday, sending scores of people to hospitals, igniting fires, damaging historic buildings and knocking out power to thousands of homes and businesses in California's wine country.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Lawmakers from both parties are pushing to halt an increase in the price of gasoline and other fuels expected to hit consumers in January, but their efforts appear to be dead with just a week to go in the legislative session.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Hundreds of people gathered Sunday in St. Louis' largest park for a festival encouraging peace over violence - an event that took on new resonance after the fatal shooting of an unarmed black 18-year-old by a white police officer.
SAN DIEGO (AP) - San Diego lifeguards have found the body of an exchange student from Ghana a day after his kayak capsized in Mission Bay.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Death Row Records founder and rap mogul Marion "Suge" Knight was injured in an early morning shooting Sunday in a packed nightclub but was expected to survive, a Los Angeles County sheriff's sergeant said.
SAN FERNANDO, Calif. (AP) - Three people were fatally shot and two others injured early Sunday in three separate attacks within the span of an hour in the northern suburbs of Los Angeles. The attacks could be related, police said.
As more Californians tear out their lawns and plant drought-friendly gardens, many homeowners wonder how the effort will pencil out.
EDGARTOWN, Mass. (AP) - President Barack Obama's summer vacation off the Massachusetts coast is nearing an end.
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Michael Brown Jr. was on the verge of starting college, eager to launch himself into the adult world. Instead, on Monday he'll be mourned at his funeral, more than two weeks after his fatal shooting by a white police officer- an act that ignited days of violent protests and reawakened racial tensions that still linger in the nation.
NASSAU, Bahamas (AP) - Tropical Storm Cristobal grew in strength Sunday and lashed parts of the Bahamas and rrithe Turks and Caicos Islands with heavy rainfall and white-crested surf.The storm was upgraded from a tropical depression Sunday morning. The U.S. National Hucane Center in Miami said the storm may strengthen into a hurricane on Wednesday while over the open waters of the Atlantic. The storm's center was expected to curve away from the U.S. East Coast.
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) - Pro-Russian insurgents on Sunday paraded captured Ukrainian soldiers through the streets of the rebel stronghold Donetsk as bystanders shouted abusive slurs and tossed eggs, bottles, and tomatoes at them.
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards said Sunday its forces shot down an Israeli drone as it approached an Iranian nuclear site, recovering major parts of what it described as an advanced aircraft. Israeli officials could not be immediately reached for comment.
CAIRO (AP) - The top Islamic authority in Egypt, revered by many Muslims worldwide, launched an Internet-based campaign Sunday challenging an extremist group in Syria and Iraq by saying it should not be called an "Islamic State."
NEW YORK (AP) - "Mockingjay, Part 1" didn't catch fire like the previous installments of "The Hunger Games," but it still had the biggest opening of the year with $123 million at the weekend box office, according to studio estimates Sunday.
SANTA PAULA (AP) - People driven from their homes in a rural section of Santa Paula last week after a truck at a waste treatment plant blew up have finally been allowed to return.
TOKYO (AP) - The damage from an overnight earthquake in a mountainous area of central Japan that hosted the 1998 winter Olympics proved more extensive than initially thought.
VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Francis canonized six new saints Sunday, including a priest and a nun from the Indian state of Kerala, in a packed ceremony in St. Peter's Square.
MANILA, Philippines (AP) - Five years after gunmen flagged down a convoy of cars in a southern Philippine province and massacred all 58 occupants, including scores of journalists, the body count continues to rise.
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - A suicide bomber attacked a volleyball tournament in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, killing at least 45 people, officials said.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Divisive and flamboyant, maddening and beloved, Marion Barry outshone every politician in the 40-year history of District of Columbia self-rule. But for many, his legacy was not defined by the accomplishments and failures of his four terms as mayor and long service on the D.C. Council.
"Go Jazz" is back this fall for its fourth season, and they are falling for jazz. Community members can fall, too, as this 20-piece, professional-level ensemble treats the crowd to its unique sounds.
TOKYO (AP) - Helicopter surveys on Sunday showed more extensive damage than earlier thought from an overnight earthquake in the mountainous central Japan area that hosted the 1998 Winter Olympics.
COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) - The World Series champion exhibit at the Baseball Hall of Fame is once again taking on an orange-and-black color scheme.
MALIBU (AP) - Sheriff's deputies say three men were able to crawl from the wreckage of a car that plunged 200 feet into a Malibu canyon.
BAKERSFIELD (AP) - A Southern California firefighter has pleaded not guilty to charges that he killed his lover's husband.
RIVERSIDE (AP) - A judge has thrown out a rape case against a Riverside County pastor.
SEATTLE (AP) - A black bear cub burned in a massive Washington state wildfire over the summer is moving to a rehabilitation facility in Idaho for the winter.
GARBERVILLE (AP) - Authorities say the pilot killed in a small plane crash in Northern California was an emergency room doctor who was commuting to work from his home.