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  • Nation hunts for Ebola victims
    In a desperate bid to slow West Africa’s accelerating Ebola outbreak, Sierra Leone ordered its 6 million people confined to their homes for three days starting today while volunteers conduct a house-to-house search for victims in hiding.
  • Floods overrun cruiser; hunt on for deputy
    Rescue crews in central Texas were searching Thursday for a sheriff’s deputy who radioed for help minutes before her empty patrol car was found submerged by floodwaters, while heavy rains in west Texas caused dozens of streets and some houses to
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Associated Press
Firefighters cut up a fallen tree that took down power lines and landed on a car Thursday in Mexico City after an earthquake shook the region.
Nation/World

Report: Apple has plans to buy Beats

– Apple is orchestrating a $3.2 billion acquisition of Beats Electronics, the headphone maker and music streaming distributor founded by hip-hop star Dr. Dre and record producer Jimmy Iovine, according to a published report.

Citing people familiar with the negotiations, The Financial Times says Apple could announce the deal as early as next week. If the deal is completed, it would be by far the largest purchase in Apple Inc.’s 38-year history.

The potential acquisition would add Beats Electronics’ popular line of headphones and music streaming service to an Apple lineup that already includes digital music players and the iTunes store, the world’s top music retailer.

Probation bolstered for convicted rapist

A 20-year-old man who was convicted of raping of a teenage schoolmate but sentenced to five years’ probation must also undergo the standard probationary conditions, including evaluation for sex offender treatment, a Dallas district court judge ruled Thursday.

Sir Young had pleaded guilty in the 2011 rape of a 14-year-old girl when he was 18 at a Dallas high school. State District Judge Jeanine Howard sentenced Young last month to 45 days in jail and five years of probation without the standard conditions – then recused herself.

“She wasn’t the victim she claimed to be,” the judge told the Dallas Morning News last week. “He is not your typical sex offender.”

Man, 88, beheaded in home; wife gone

An 88-year-old man was decapitated in an exclusive gated community in Georgia and his wife has gone missing, the sheriff said Thursday, adding that the man’s head hasn’t been found.

Investigators fear Russell Dermond’s 87-year-old wife, Shirley, was abducted or killed. They said the couple’s lakefront home in Greensboro showed no signs of a struggle or forced entry, nothing was missing and no ransom note was left behind.

Oklahoma execution delayed 6 months

The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals agreed Thursday to a six-month stay of execution for a death row inmate while an investigation is conducted into last week’s botched lethal injection.

The court reset the execution date of inmate Charles Warner to Nov. 13. Warner’s attorneys requested the delay, and state Attorney General Scott Pruitt said Thursday he wouldn’t object.

While the stay applies only to Warner, the attorney general and governor have said Oklahoma will not carry out any executions until the investigation is finished, which is expected to take at least eight weeks.

Space station leans on backup power

The International Space Station is down one power channel because of an electrical malfunction. But NASA says everyone and everything is safe up there.

Mission Control says one of eight power channels went down Thursday because of an apparent trip in an electrical switch. Most of the station systems that depend on that power line immediately switched to a backup.

Officials say the problem will not affect Tuesday’s departure by three of the six astronauts. An American, Japanese and Russian will return to Earth after a half-year mission.

Earthquake rattles Mexico; bridge falls

A strong earthquake shook the southern Pacific coast of Mexico as well as the capital and several inland states Thursday, sending frightened people into unseasonal torrential rain that was also bearing down on the coast.

The 6.4-magnitude quake in southern Guerrero state was felt about 170 miles miles away in Mexico City, where office workers streamed into the streets away from high-rise buildings.

There were no reports of injuries, but among the damage was the collapse of a 30-yard section of highway bridge that was already under repair from last fall’s flooding and a magnitude-7.2 quake in the same area in April.

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