WASHINGTON (AP) - The first bang sounded distant and muffled. On the fourth floor, Bertillia Lavern assumed somebody downstairs was setting up for an event and had dropped a folding table.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Congress is moving to avert an impending shutdown of the federal helium reserve, a key supplier of the lighter-than-air gas used in a products ranging from party balloons to MRI machines.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - NASA's Curiosity rover hasn't discovered any signs of methane in the atmosphere of Mars, a finding that does not bode well for the possibility that microbes capable of producing the gas could be living below the planet's surface, scientists said Thursday.
NEW YORK (AP) - Wells Fargo plans to lay off an additional 1,800 employees from its mortgage department, after cutting about 2,300 jobs from the same unit in August.
VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Francis has warned that the Catholic Church's moral structure might "fall like a house of cards" if it doesn't balance its divisive rules about abortion, gays and contraception with the greater need to make the church a merciful, more welcoming place for all.
ACAPULCO, Mexico (AP) - Mexico's government said 58 people were missing after a massive landslide smashed through a tiny coffee-growing village deep in the country's southern mountains, where fresh waves of rain threatened more danger for rescue workers trying to evacuate the last residents from the isolated hamlet on Thursday.
SAYRE, Okla. (AP) - When three teenagers from this small Oklahoma town disappeared on their way to a high school football game in 1970, rumors swirled as to what happened to the trio.
BOSTON (AP) - Mark Wahlberg is now a high school graduate - 25 years after dropping out of a Boston high school.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - A fire that raged in forestland in and around Yosemite National Park has left a contiguous "moonscape" in the Sierra Nevada mountains larger than any in centuries.
LONGMONT, Colo. (AP) - Airlifts gave way to door-to-door searches Wednesday for victims injured and killed in the flood-scarred Colorado foothills, as authorities began ramping down emergency operations and beginning the "long and arduous" recovery phase.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The latest Powerball jackpot is estimated at $400 million, and it's considered the nation's fifth-largest ever. Here are some things to keep in mind ahead of Wednesday night's drawing.
SALEM, Ore. (AP) - A pilot killed this week when his helicopter crashed while attempting to lift logs in an Oregon forest has been identified as a former cast member of the History Channel series "Ax Men."
A commercial cargo ship made its successful debut Wednesday, rocketing toward the International Space Station and doubling the number of NASA's private suppliers for the high-flying lab.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Internet radio leader Pandora has won a court battle with the music publishing society known as ASCAP (AZ-cap) that could help it lower its royalty payments.
IRWINDALE (AP) - The maker of the popular Sriracha (suhr-AH'-chuh) hot sauce says he has no intention of moving his embattled factory out of Irwindale, California, but he has told two visiting Texas lawmakers he might consider expanding into that state.
The suspect in a gas station robbery and 100 mph chase kept pointing his handgun to his head, and police negotiator Andres Wells was doing all he could to keep the man from committing suicide. But he kept cutting Wells' phone calls short.
SAN DIEGO (AP) - Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. government ran a big surplus in April, thanks to a flood of tax payments that helped keep the budget on track for the lowest annual deficit in six years.
LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) - A new video from Nigeria's Boko Haram purports to show schoolgirls, covered in hijab, who are being held captive by the Islamic extremists.
DENVER (AP) - A spring storm that has brought over a foot of snow to parts of Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska and thunderstorms and tornadoes to the Midwest was slowing down travelers and left some without power Monday morning.
NEW YORK (AP) - Fox will cut "American Idol" to one night for several weeks next spring, part of a reset for a struggling network that will have 11 new series in the coming year including the much-awaited "Batman" prequel "Gotham."
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling apologized Sunday for racist comments captured on tape, saying they were a "terrible mistake."
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Mark Cavendish has more than 100 wins around the world, including 25 stages in the Tour de France, but he never had a victory like the one he had Sunday.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - California lawmakers are trying to strengthen consumer data protections as businesses profit from the trove of details they collect and criminals become ever more sophisticated in trying to steal it.
KRASNOARMEISK, Ukraine (AP) - Armed men identified as Ukrainian national guard opened fire Sunday on a crowd outside a town hall in eastern Ukraine, and an official for the region's insurgents said there were fatalities.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Laurel Canyon wasn't much to look at - a few modest bungalows and log cabins crammed between an occasional faded mansion that had been left over from the days when it was a secluded, semi-rural retreat for Hollywood's silent-movie stars.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) - The lawyer for the Pakistani doctor who helped the U.S. find Osama bin Laden said Sunday he wouldn't represent him any longer after facing threats from militants, even as America pushes for the man to be freed.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government has failed to inspect thousands of oil and gas wells it considers potentially high risks for water contamination and other environmental damage, congressional investigators say.
BAUCHI, Nigeria (AP) - One of the teenagers who escaped from Islamic extremists who abducted more than 300 schoolgirls says the kidnapping was "too terrifying for words," and she is now scared to go back to school.