The Brief

NOAA Clouds

Florida Declares Emergency as Storm Approaches

Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency as Tropical Storm Erika nears Florida, calling the storm "a severe threat to the entire state." Forecasters predict Erika could go through the middle of the state, and may hit the peninsula on Monday

Owen Labrie

Former Prep School Student Acquitted of Rape

A graduate of a New England prep school was cleared of felony rape but convicted of misdemeanor sex crimes against a 15-year-old freshman in a case that exposed a campus tradition where seniors competed to sleep with younger students

Ashley Madison founder Noel Biderman poses during an interview in Hong Kong

CEO Of Ashley Madison Parent Company Stepping Down

A week after hackers first published stolen data from the infidelity website Ashley Madison, parent company Avid Life Media's chief executive officer Noel Biderman has resigned. The hacking scandal publicized personal information for more than 30 million users

NSA headquarters Fort Meade maryland

Federal Court Supports NSA's Phone Data Collection

A federal appeals court has ruled in favor of the Obama administration on the bulk collection of phone data on millions of Americans. The court reversed a lower ruling that said the program likely violates the Constitution's ban on unreasonable searches

Katrina Changing City New Orleans

How Katrina Prompted Green Building in New Orleans

After Hurricane Katrina, a slew of nonprofits committed millions of dollars to support the construction of green homes in New Orleans, which in turn prompted a green building trend in the city, which could serve as a model for other communities

illinois football coach tim beckman

Illinois Football Coach Fired Over Player Mistreatment

Illinois fired coach Tim Beckman one week before the start of the season, saying preliminary results of an investigation found some truth to allegations of player mistreatment and inappropriate behavior, including efforts to deter injury reporting

buzz aldrin space institute

Buzz Aldrin Wants to Colonize Mars Before 2040

The second man on the moon is teaming up with the Florida Institute of Technology to develop a master plan to colonize the red planet in less than 25 years. Aldrin chose 2039 to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission

Fancy Feast cat food

Lawsuit Accuses Nestlé of Using Slave-Caught Fish

A class-action lawsuit filed by California residents claims that Nestlé purchases fish from a Thai supplier known to use slave labor—and uses that fish in Fancy Feast cat food. The suit was brought by consumers who bought the product

Here’s Your Guide to the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards

The 2015 Video Music Awards will air on MTV this Sunday evening. Here's a rundown of what you need to know, from slated performers and key categories to nomination controversies and the most important moments to watch out for

Dead refugees found in a truck in Austria

Death Toll in Truck of Migrants Hits 71

Austrian police say three people have been arrested in connection with the deaths of 71 migrants found in a food struck on an Austrian highway. The toll includes eight women and four children, one of them an infant