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Colin Jeffery

Colin Jeffery

Police: 3 dead, including presumed gunman

Saturday, 25 January 2014 13:05 Published in National News

COLUMBIA, Md. (AP) — Police in Maryland say three people are dead in a shooting at a mall in suburban Baltimore.

Police say they believe the shooter is among the dead.

Howard County police said via Twitter that the scene is now "believed to be secure."

The shooting happened at the Mall in Columbia, a suburb between Baltimore and Washington.

Authorities received a call to 911 at around 11:15 a.m. from someone reporting that shots had been fired. Police responded to the scene and found three people dead, including one person who was found near a gun and ammunition.

Philadelphia prepares for unconfirmed Pope visit

Saturday, 25 January 2014 13:04 Published in National News

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Church officials say plans for a major Catholic gathering in Philadelphia next year are proceeding with the assumption Pope Francis will attend, though that hasn't been officially confirmed.

The eighth World Meeting of Families will take place in September 2015. It's expected to draw hundreds of thousands of visitors.

Philadelphia Archdiocese spokesman Ken Gavin tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that "our planning all along has assumed the presence of the Holy Father."

Pope Benedict XVI announced in 2012 that Philadelphia would host the triennial event. At the time, he said he looked forward to meeting the region's Catholics. He attended the seventh convocation of families in Milan.

Benedict has since retired. Pope Francis' schedule remains unclear.

Traditionally, papal trips abroad are confirmed a few months before the journey.

Missouri woman charged with stealing from PTO

Saturday, 25 January 2014 13:00 Published in Local News

CREVE COEUR, Mo. (AP) — The former treasurer for a suburban St. Louis parent-teacher organization faces charges accusing her of stealing more than $50,000 from the organization.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports 36-year-old Tenille R. Batsell of Olivette was charged Thursday in St. Louis County with felony stealing.

Police say Batsell was treasurer of the Spoede School Association at Spoede Elementary School in Creve Coeur. She's accused of pocketing about $53,000 that belonged to the group, which relies on donations to organize events for students. Members of the organization called police after discovering accounting discrepancies on its books.

The parent-teacher association said on its website that its members were aware of the charges but couldn't comment.

Online court records don't list a lawyer for Batsell.

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