TIME Turkey

18 Miners Trapped in Coal Mine Accident in Turkey

(ANKARA, Turkey) — Surging water trapped at least 18 workers Tuesday in a coal mine in Turkey, officials and reports said — an event likely to raise even more concerns about the nation’s poor workplace safety standards.

Initial reports said flooding inside the Has Sekerler mine near the town of Ermenek in Karaman province caused a cave-in, but subsequent reports workers were trapped by the water. Turkey’s emergency management agency, AFAD, said a broken pipe in the mine caused the flooding but did not elaborate.

Gov. Murat Koca said about 20 other workers escaped or were rescued from the mine, some 500 kilometers (300 miles) south of Ankara, close to Turkey’s Mediterranean coast

Sahin Uyar, an official at the privately owned coal mine, told private NTV television that the miners were stuck more than 300 meters (330 yards) underground.

“At the moment, 18 of our colleagues are trapped. We are working to pump water out from three sections of the mine,” he told NTV, adding that rescue crews had made no contact with the miners.

Uyar said the trapped workers’ chances of survival were slim unless they had managed to reach a safety gallery.

Turkey’s ministers for energy and transportation immediately left Ankara, the capital, to oversee the rescue operation. AFAD said it had sent 225 people to join rescuers from neighboring mines and regions.

In May, a fire inside a coal mine in the western town of Soma killed 301 miners in Turkey’s worst mining disaster. The fire exposed poor safety standards and superficial government inspections in many of the country’s mines.

TIME Transportation

14 Hurt in Indiana Amtrak Crash With Semitrailer

Amtrak-Semi Collision
A semi-truck hauling cement lies in two pieces after an Amtrak train struck it about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2014, near Reynolds, Ind. John Terhune—Journal & Courier/AP

REYNOLDS, Ind. (AP) — An Amtrak train traveling from Indianapolis to Chicago collided Tuesday morning with a semi-truck in its path along northwestern Indiana rail tracks, injuring at 14 people aboard the train, police said.

White County Sheriff Pat Shafer said 14 people complaining of pain were taken to local hospitals after the collision. The truck driver was not among the injured, he said.

Shafer said the collision occurred about 8:20 a.m. when the northbound train struck a semi-truck that had crossed onto rail tracks running adjacent to U.S. 421. He said the train split the truck in half but its driver was not injured. He said it’s unclear why the truck was on the rural tracks about 25 miles north of Lafayette.

“The collision ripped the truck in half,” Shafer told The Associated Press.

Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari said none of the passengers and crew injured in Tuesday morning’s collision involving the Hoosier State line suffered serious or life-threatening injuries.

Magliari said the collision occurred shortly after the train left Lafayette, where it had made it second stop to pick up passengers after leaving Indianapolis. He said the train was carrying 56 passengers and three crew members when it collided with the semi-truck.

Magliari said it’s unclear why the truck’s driver apparently disregarded train crossing signs at the marked public train crossing along a White County road that intersects with U.S. 421.

Shafer said the train’s uninjured passengers were taken from the scene on buses.

The Journal & Courier reported the collision left two large pieces of the truck on either side of the tracks at the impact scene about two miles north of the White County town of Reynolds.

TIME Courts

Bombing Suspect’s Friend Convicted of Lying to FBI

Robel Phillipos, 21, of Cambridge, was convicted of two counts

(BOSTON) — A friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was convicted Tuesday of lying during the investigation into the 2013 attack.

Robel Phillipos, 21, of Cambridge, was convicted of two counts for lying about being in Tsarnaev’s dorm room while two other friends removed a backpack containing fireworks and other potential evidence three days after the bombing while an intense manhunt was underway for the suspected bombers. He looked straight ahead impassively as the guilty verdicts were read.

FBI agents testified that Phillipos told them a string of lies about the night of April 18, 2013, before finally acknowledging he had been in Tsarnaev’s room at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth with the two men who removed Tsarnaev’s backpack and computer.

Phillipos’ lawyers said he was a frightened 19-year-old who was intimidated by the FBI and too high on marijuana to clearly remember what he did that night. The defense called several friends who said Phillipos smoked marijuana a half-dozen times that day.

The defense also called former Massachusetts governor and 1988 Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis to testify for Phillipos. Dukakis, an old family friend of Phillipos’ mother, described a phone conversation he had with Phillipos five days after the bombings. Dukakis said Phillipos told him he had been questioned by the FBI for five hours, but was so confused he didn’t remember what he said.

The defense also claimed that Phillipos’ confession was coerced by FBI agents.

Prosecutors scoffed at Phillipos’ marijuana defense, telling the jury that he was able to remember many details about April 18 and lied about his activities that night because he knew he had done something wrong.

The two friends who removed Tsarnaev’s backpack were both convicted of conspiracy and obstruction of justice.

Tsarnaev is awaiting trial in the bombings. He has pleaded not guilty to 30 federal charges and could face the death penalty if convicted.

Phillipos’ sentencing is scheduled Jan. 29, and he faces a maximum sentence of eight years on each count of lying during a terrorism investigation. Phillipos will remain under house arrest on an electronic monitoring bracelet until then.

TIME ebola

Dallas Nurse Who Had Ebola Will Be Released From Hospital

Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas staff line the drive that exits the emergency room as they wait for an ambulance carrying Nina Pham on Oct. 16, 2014, in Dallas. Amber Vinson, another nurse diagnosed, was taken to a similar location in Atlanta the day prior.
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas staff line the drive that exits the emergency room as they wait for an ambulance carrying Nina Pham on Oct. 16, 2014, in Dallas. Amber Vinson, another nurse diagnosed, was taken to a similar location in Atlanta the day prior. Tony Gutierrez—AP

(ATLANTA) — A Dallas nurse who was being treated for Ebola will be released from an Atlanta hospital Tuesday after tests showed she’s virus-free, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Amber Vinson, 29, would be leaving Emory University Hospital following a 1 p.m. news conference to make a statement after tests showed she’s virus-free, Emory spokeswoman Holly Korschun told The Associated Press.

Vinson worked as a nurse at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas and cared for Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man who died of Ebola at the hospital on Oct. 8.

Vinson’s family announced Oct. 22 that doctors could no longer detect the deadly virus in her body, a step toward recovery her mother described as an answered prayer.

Vinson was one of two nurses who became infected while caring for Duncan. The other infected nurse, Nina Pham, was released Oct. 24 from a hospital attached to the National Institutes of Health near Washington.

It remains unclear exactly how the nurses became infected.

Vinson attended to Duncan on Sept. 30, the day he tested positive for Ebola, according to medical records that Duncan’s family released to The Associated Press. Like Pham, the reports note that Vinson wore protective gear and a face shield, hazardous materials suit, and protective footwear. At the time, Duncan’s body fluids were highly infectious if someone made contact with them. At one point, Vinson inserted a catheter into Duncan.

TIME Football

Colorado Man Disappears During Denver Broncos Game

Paul Kitterman
A photo from a missing person police flyer shows Paul Kitterman a fan who went missing from the Oct. 23, 2014 Broncos game. AP

(DENVER) — Relatives of a Broncos fan who went missing during last week’s game are wondering how a man with no known health or personal problems could seem to vanish without a trace.

Family and friends of 53-year-old Paul Kitterman have been searching for him since Thursday night’s matchup with the San Diego Chargers at Sports Authority Field.

His stepson, Jarod Tonneson, said he has not been seen since he left his seat to meet friends during halftime. Tonneson filed a missing persons report with Denver police, scoured the sprawling stadium, called local hospitals and detox centers and taped fliers around the city.

“We just don’t know what else to do,” Tonneson told The Associated Press on Monday. “Paul is a simple guy, he doesn’t like technology, he doesn’t get into drama. He’s just an easygoing guy.”

The two went to the game with two of their friends after a day spent working and hunting at another friend’s ranch in Kremmling, a small town in the mountains of northern Colorado.

Kitterman and Tonneson, both construction workers, hurriedly made the 100 mile trip to the stadium after a friend offered tickets. It was Kitterman’s first time there. In their haste, Kitterman forgot his cellphone, took no credit cards and very little cash.

Still, Kitterman had memorized his friends’ phone numbers and would have found ways to reach out if he wanted to leave. He had four or five beers in the course of a four-hour span, not enough to become disoriented, Tonneson said.

Denver police spokesman Sonny Jackson said detectives don’t suspect foul play, but he would not elaborate. He said police were trying to support the family in their search.

“They just don’t seem too worried about it being that he is a grown man,” Tonneson said.

His parents live in Arizona and his siblings in Missouri, but Kitterman has few contacts in the Denver area, Tonneson said.

“He wouldn’t just take off, you know?” Tonneson said. “He wouldn’t leave me there.”

TIME Paleontology

Possible Complete Mammoth Skeleton Found in Idaho

Mammoth Bones Found
Idaho State University geology students Casey Dooms, left, and Jeff Castro brush and clean a mammoth skull discovered near American Falls Reservoir near American Falls, Idaho, on Oct. 16, 2014 Dave Walsh—AP

Experts estimate the mammoth was about 16 years old and lived about 70,000 to 120,000 years ago

(AMERICAN FALLS, IDAHO) — A portion of a an mammoth skull and tusks have been uncovered in southeastern Idaho, and experts say a rare entire skeleton might be buried there.

Experts estimate the mammoth was about 16 years old and lived about 70,000 to 120,000 years ago in what was a savanna-like country populated with large plant-eaters and predators.

The skeleton was spotted earlier this month by a fossil hunter working as a volunteer for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation near American Falls Reservoir. It was partially excavated by students and instructors from Idaho State University.

But the team had to postpone their work Oct. 18 as the reservoir’s water level rose, completing some of their tasks while standing in water. They plan to return next summer when the reservoir drops.

“It gives us a little more time to prepare if this is a complete mammoth, to get the funds together,” said Mary Thompson, Idaho Museum of Natural History collections manager and a university instructor. “This is going to be substantial to go out and excavate a complete mammoth.”

She said more bones and tusks remained in the bank that couldn’t immediately be removed.

“There may be a whole mammoth there, so that is rare,” she said.

Workers built a barrier to keep the fossil in place while underwater.

The area, Thompson said, has produced fossils of various extinct species over the decades, ranging from saber-toothed cats, short-nosed bears that were larger than grizzlies, and giant sloths. One of the most often found fossils are from bison latifrons, somewhat similar to modern bison but larger and with giant horns. Their image is part of the museum’s logo.

“It’s a very important North American Pleistocene site,” Thompson said, naming a time period that runs from 1.8 million years ago to 10,000 years ago. “We have researchers from all over the world coming here to study the fossils from American Falls.”

Besides fossils, there are also tracks of mammoths, large cats, canines and other animals where they crossed then muddy areas eons ago.

Thompson said she hopes to have the portions of the mammoth the team managed to get out put on display early next year.

“My crew is mainly students,” she said. “These are things I can’t teach in the classroom or in the lab. It’s a very unusual opportunity.”

TIME shooting

Sheriff: School Shooter Invited Victims to Lunch

Students and community members attend a vigil at the Grove Church, after a school shooting that occurred at Marysville-Pilchuck High School earlier in the day in Marysville, Wash., on Oct. 24, 2014 Matt Mills McKnight—EPA

On Friday, after texting five friends to invite them to lunch, he pulled out a handgun in the cafeteria and started shooting

MARYSVILLE, Wash. (AP) — A popular student responsible for a shooting at a Washington state high school invited his victims to lunch by text message, then shot them at their table, investigators said Monday.

Snohomish County Sheriff Ty Trenary said at a news conference that the five students were at a lunch table Friday when they were shot by 15-year-old Jaylen Fryberg. Fryberg then committed suicide.

Detectives are digging through reams of text messages, phone and social media records as part of an investigation that could take months, Trenary said.

“The question everybody wants is, ‘Why?'” Trenary said. “I don’t know that the ‘why’ is something we can provide.”

Fryberg, a football player who was named a prince on the school’s homecoming court a week before the killings, was a member of a prominent Tulalip Indian Tribes family. He seemed happy although he was also upset about a girl, friends said. His Twitter feed was recently full of vague, anguished postings, like “It won’t last … It’ll never last,” and “I should have listened. … You were right … The whole time you were right.”

On Friday, after texting five friends to invite them to lunch, he pulled out a handgun in the cafeteria and started shooting. The victims were Zoe R. Galasso, 14, who died at the scene; Gia Soriano, 14, who died at a hospital Sunday night; Shaylee Chuckulnaskit, 14, who remains in critical condition; and his two cousins, Nate Hatch, 14, and Andrew Fryberg, 15.

Andrew Fryberg also remained in critical condition. Hatch, who was shot in the jaw, is the only victim who has shown improvement. He was upgraded to satisfactory condition Monday in intensive care at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. He posted a message of forgiveness on Twitter.

“I love you and I forgive you jaylen rest in peace,” he wrote. A friend confirmed the feed’s authenticity to The Associated Press.

Soriano’s family said her organs would be donated.

“We are devastated by this senseless tragedy,” her family said in a statement, read at a news conference by Providence Regional Medical Center’s Dr. Joanne Roberts. “Gia is our beautiful daughter, and words cannot express how much we will miss her.”

Trenary also confirmed that the .40-caliber handgun used in the shooting had been legally purchased by one of Jaylen Fryberg’s relatives. It remains unclear how the boy obtained the weapon.

The Snohomish County medical examiner on Monday ruled Fryberg’s death a suicide. There had been some question over whether he might have shot himself accidentally as a teacher tried to intervene, but Trenary said Monday that investigators confirmed there was no physical contact between the teacher and the gunman.

At the memorial outside the school Monday, a group of mourners hugged each other tightly at 10:39 a.m. — the minute the shooting was reported Friday. Flowers and signs were zip-tied to a chain-link fence lined with red and white balloons reflecting the school’s colors. Many referenced the victims and said they’d be missed.

Read next: Connected to Both Sides, Relatives in Washington Shooting Seek Answers

TIME justice

Judge Sets New Trial Date for James Holmes

James Holmes
Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes in court in Centennial, Co. on June 4, 2013. Andy Cross—AP

(CENTENNIAL, Colo.) — A Colorado judge has postponed the death penalty trial for movie theater shooter James Holmes so that Holmes’ attorneys can have more time to evaluate a second report on their client’s sanity.

Judge Carlos A. Samour wrote in a Monday ruling that jury selection will start Jan. 20. It had been set for Dec. 8.

The new schedule won’t unnecessarily delay the case but gives Holmes’ attorneys time to analyze the second sanity exam and prepare for trial, Samour wrote in the order. Jury selection could take months, with opening statements to begin in early June, as previously expected.

Holmes, 26, a former graduate student in neuroscience, pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the July 20, 2012, attack.

More than 400 people were watching a midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” in the theater in the Denver suburb of Aurora at the time. Holmes’ lawyers acknowledge he was the shooter but argue he was in the grips of a psychotic episode.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty. They did not object to a short delay but did note that many victims opposed one.

This is Holmes’ fifth trial date. The first date, in August 2013, was canceled after prosecutors said they would seek the death penalty, raising numerous issues that had to be resolved before trial. The second, in February, was scratched after prosecutors asked for the second sanity evaluation.

The third was Oct. 14, which the judge postponed to Dec. 8 after the doctor conducting the second evaluation requested an extension.

Defense attorneys sought the latest delay so they could have more time to study the second sanity evaluation, which they said includes 22 hours of interviews with Holmes.

He underwent a mandatory sanity evaluation last year, but the key finding — whether he could tell right from wrong — was not released. Samour ordered the second sanity evaluation in January, after prosecutors said the doctor who conducted the first one was biased. Samour agreed it was flawed.

The evaluation is not the final word on whether Holmes was insane, but it is a key piece of evidence jurors will consider when making that determination.

Findings of Holmes’ sanity evaluations have not been released.

TIME Toronto

Toronto Elects a New Mayor, Ends Ford Era

Rob Ford
Mayor Rob Ford in Toronto on July 15, 2014. Darren Calabrese—The Canadian Press/AP

TORONTO (AP) — Toronto has elected a moderate conservative as mayor, ending the scandal-ridden Rob Ford era.

John Tory had 40 percent of the vote, compared to 34 percent for Doug Ford, brother of outgoing Mayor Rob Ford. Left-leaning Olivia Chow was third with nearly 23 percent. The results were announced Monday night with more than 90 percent of polling stations reporting.

Rob Ford’s four-year tenure as mayor of Canada’s largest city was marred by his drinking and crack cocaine use. He announced last month that he wouldn’t seek re-election as he battles a rare form of cancer. His brother, a city councilor, ran in his place.

Despite the cancer, Ford opted to seek the City Council seat from the Etobicoke district where he launched his political career. He won his old seat in a landslide.

After months of denials, the mayor in 2013 acknowledged he had smoked crack cocaine in one of his “drunken stupors,” but he refused to resign. The City Council stripped Ford of most of his powers but lacked the authority to force him out of office because he wasn’t convicted of a crime.

Ford announced he was entering rehab for drugs and alcohol in April 2014 after newspaper reports detailed three nights in which he was extremely intoxicated. One report was about a video that appeared to show him smoking a crack pipe again — nearly a year after reports of a similar video first brought international attention.

TIME Estonia

Estonia: Pupil Shoots Teacher in School Class

(TALLINN, Estonia) — Estonian police say a teacher has been killed by a pupil who shot her during class in the southern town of Viljandi.

Police spokeswoman Tuuli Harson said the shooting took place Monday afternoon in Paalalinna school, and the shooter has been apprehended.

She said no one else was injured.

Estonian media said the shooter was a 15-year-old boy and the victim was a German teacher.

No other details were immediately available.

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