February 8th, 2011
11:50 PM ET

The day's most popular stories

The five most popular stories on CNN.com in the past 24 hours, according to NewsPulse:

Baby left in arena toilet clings to life: A baby boy clings to life at a South Carolina hospital, three days after being abandoned in an arena toilet after a circus show, police said.

NFL apologizes for Super Bowl seat fiasco: Football officials are apologizing to ticket-holding fans who were denied seats at Sunday's Super Bowl, but that may not be enough to stop lawsuits over the issue from going ahead.

Investigating the killing of a protester: CNN's Nic Robertson investigates the shooting death of a protester by police in Alexandria, Egypt.

Plains, South brace for another winter storm: Snow began falling over Colorado and Kansas on Tuesday as yet another round of winter weather began marching across the United States barely a week after a record-setting winter storm roared across the Midwest.

Toddler disappears from house full of people: The parents of a Texas toddler are struggling for answers days after their young son mysteriously disappeared from a house full of people.


Filed under: Most Popular
Dallas official under fire for giving Vick key to city
February 8th, 2011
11:18 PM ET

Dallas official under fire for giving Vick key to city

A Dallas City Council member is taking heat from animal rights activists and fellow elected officials for giving NFL quarterback Michael Vick - convicted in 2007 of charges relating to dogfighting - a ceremonial key to the city over the weekend.

Councilman Dwaine Caraway, who also is the city’s mayor pro tem, presented the key to Vick after the Philadelphia Eagles star spoke an event geared toward teenagers at Dallas' Cirque club on Saturday.

"I would like to personally present to Michael Vick the key to the city of Dallas, Texas. Michael … You deserve it. You earned it. We appreciate you, and we love you," Caraway told Vick - who plays for one of the Dallas Cowboys' division rivals - during the presentation, which was posted on YouTube.

Animal groups responded to the gift harshly in the city's news media.

"Michael Vick is a convicted felon. He committed horrible, atrocious crimes, violent crimes," Jonnie England, of the Metroplex Animal Coalition, told CNN affiliate WFAA. "He has done nothing to deserve a key to the city of Dallas."

On Monday, Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert distanced himself from the presentation, telling the Dallas Morning News: "We don't condone it and clearly didn’t approve it. It's unfortunate, and I would rather have not seen the situation."

FULL POST

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Filed under: Football • Pro football • Sports • Texas
U.S. stocks post solid gains, Obama looks to help states with jobless aid
February 8th, 2011
08:13 PM ET

U.S. stocks post solid gains, Obama looks to help states with jobless aid

A look at the day's business news headlines:

Stocks post broad gains, led by consumer names 
 
U.S. stocks posted another day of solid gains Tuesday, with the Dow Jones industrial average climbing for the seventh straight day, as traders cheered news in the consumer sector and looked past China's latest interest rate hike.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 72 points, or 0.6%; to 12,233, the S&P 500 rose 5.2 points, or 0.4%, to 1,324.6 and the Nasdaq composite advanced 13 points, or 0.5%, to 2,797.

The blue chips were led higher by shares of McDonald's, which climbed 2.6% after the fast food giant reported better-than-expected January same-store sales. Other consumer discretionary names in the S&P 500 posted solid gains including  Urban Outfitters, Family Dollar and JCPenney among others.

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Filed under: Business • Economy • Jobs
50 people in 50 days: Air Force nurse vanished while on leave
Nonnie Dotson's relatives say they haven't seen her since she left her brother's Colorado home on November 19, 2006.
February 8th, 2011
07:59 PM ET

50 people in 50 days: Air Force nurse vanished while on leave

Editor's note: Nancy Grace's new show on HLN, "Nancy Grace: America's Missing," is dedicated to finding 50 people in 50 days. As part of the effort, which relies heavily on audience participation, CNN.com's news blog This Just In will feature the stories of the missing.

This is the 17th case, and it airs Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on HLN.

Just four months before she was to end her military duty, Nonnie Dotson disappeared while visiting relatives in Littleton, Colorado, in November 2006.

Dotson, then a single 33-year-old mother, was an intensive-care nurse at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. She was on a pre-Thanksgiving holiday when she disappeared.

She was supposed to meet friends at a smoothie shop about a half-mile from her brother's home. She left the home on the afternoon of November 19, but she didn't appear at the smoothie shop. When her 16-month-old daughter woke up crying the next morning, her family realized that Dotson hadn't returned.

Police said there was no activity on her bank accounts, credit cards or cell phone. No suspects have been named.


Filed under: 50 People in 50 Days • Crime • TV-Nancy Grace
Lindsay Lohan to be charged with necklace theft
Lindsay Lohan, seen here attending a Los Angeles Lakers game on January 9, is accused of stealing a necklace from a Venice, California, jewelry store on January 22, the Los Angeles County district attorney's office says.
February 8th, 2011
05:36 PM ET

Lindsay Lohan to be charged with necklace theft

Actress Lindsay Lohan will be charged Wednesday with felony grand theft relating to a necklace allegedly taken from a Venice, California, jewelry store last month, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

Lohan, 24, will be arraigned on the charge at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Los Angeles Airport Superior Court, Deputy District Attorney John Lynch said.

The actress "allegedly walked out of the store with the necklace on January 22," a statement from the district attorney's office said. "The owner reported the theft to the Los Angeles Police Department, which investigated the
allegation and presented evidence to the D.A.'s office last week."

The necklace, which is valued at $2,500, was handed over to police just before they were to execute a search warrant to look for the jewelry in Lohan's Venice, California, apartment last week.

Lohan was already on supervised probation stemming from probation violations related to a 2007 drunk driving conviction.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: California • Celebrity • Crime
Tunisia now, and where it's going
Demonstrators shout and wave signs in front of the Tunisian parliament on Monday in Tunis.
February 8th, 2011
04:42 PM ET

Tunisia now, and where it's going

A transitional government is overseeing sweeping changes in Tunisia after massive demonstrations forced out the country's longtime president and sparked similar protests across the Middle East.

Under president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the news media was tightly controlled. Internet activity was monitored and access to some sites was restricted. Police routinely stopped people without cause to check their identity and question them - it was a policy that the government said was needed to prevent terrorists from gaining a foothold in Tunisia. Tunisians limited what they spoke about with friends and neighbors for fear that someone might be a police informer.

Today, internet filters have disappeared and there is unfettered access to all websites. Journalists are learning how to create a free press as they transform their newspapers, radio broadcasts and television stations. People express their opinions openly in the streets. Reforms are taking place in every region of the country, which is home to about 12 million people.

The question is, will these changes last?

FULL POST

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Filed under: Tunisia
February 8th, 2011
02:37 PM ET

Plains and South brace for another winter storm

Snow began falling over Colorado and Kansas Tuesday as yet another round of winter weather began marching across the United States barely a week after a record-setting winter storm roared across the Midwest.

A powerful weather system poised over the Rockies is forecast to dump several feet of snow in the Mountain West and up to 10 inches in some parts of Oklahoma, forecasters said.

Much of Oklahoma is under a winter storm warning, but snow and sleet are predicted as far south as central Texas, with 2 to 4 inches expected to coat the Dallas-Fort Worth area, the National Weather Service said.

Later in the week, the system is expected to bring rain and snow to many areas of the Deep South before delivering a wintry mix along portions of the East Coast by Thursday.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Colorado • Kansas • Oklahoma • Texas • Weather • Winter weather
Egypt transitioning, but to what?
February 8th, 2011
02:01 PM ET

Egypt transitioning, but to what?

With protesters still in the streets of Cairo and newly appointed government officials meeting with some opposition leaders, Egypt faces an uncertain future. The outcome will depend largely on the course charted by a transitional government.

Many other countries have been down the path Egypt finds itself on. A popular uprising undermines the authority of a long-standing regime and a period of chaos ensues. Transitional governments often take control and their success at ushering in change varies depending on a multitude of factors.

"In many of these cases, if the military splits or goes against the ruler and helps to bring in some transition with popular support, it still may take a cycle or more to get to an actual democratic regime or to accomplish real change," said Georgia State University political science professor Jennifer McCoy, citing past transitions in Latin American, Eastern Europe and the Philippines.

There is no guaranteed route to success, McCoy said, and often, while there may be some wholesale changes, the people in positions of authority remain at the top in transitional governments. 

“In a case where there is no clear leader or leading group such as in Egypt today that spurred the change, it’s very difficult to predict where it’s going to go."

Click here for the entire interview:

You can also listen to the CNN Radio Reports podcast on itunes or subscribe to the podcast here.

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Filed under: Egypt
Wake Forest baseball coach gives player kidney
Coach Tom Walter donated a kidney to Wake Forest baseball player Kevin Jordan.
February 8th, 2011
01:51 PM ET

Wake Forest baseball coach gives player kidney

A college baseball coach has donated a kidney to one of his players.

Wake Forest University outfielder Kevin Jordan and coach Tom Walter are recovering after surgery at Emory University in Atlanta, team spokesman Steven Wright said.

"Coach Walter told the team about a week ago what he wanted to do and, well, there were just a bunch of stunned faces in the room," Wright said. "But the coach didn't really seemed fazed by the surgery. I don't think it was a matter of making the decision so much as it was, 'This is how it has to be, so it is.' "

Jordan has a rare condition that causes abnormal antibodies to attack white blood cells and damage small blood vessels, the newspaper reported.

Walter reportedly stepped up after learning that none of the athlete's relatives were a match.

The coach talked to USA Today before the operation. "When we recruit our guys, we talk about family and making sacrifices for one another," he said. "It is something we take very seriously. I had the support of my family, Wake Forest and my team. To me it was a no-brainer."

Donating a kidney is an incredible act of generosity, but there's something uniquely remarkable about this case. The freshman from Columbus, Georgia, hasn't even played a game with Wake Forest yet.

Jordan, who was the New York Yankees pick in the 19th round of 2010's amateur draft, had only practiced with his teammates last fall at Wake Forest. He started school at Wake Forest last August, and endured hours of dialysis a day while keeping up with the demands of college ball and his school work. In recent months, his health began to deteriorate, Wright said.

Next semester, Jordan will take time off at home to recover from the surgery. But the coach has said he plans to be at Wake Forest's first game against LSU in less than two weeks.

"He might not be catching fly balls," said Wright. "But Coach Walter will be with his team."

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Filed under: Baseball • Health • Sports
February 8th, 2011
12:39 PM ET

Assange's lawyers want Swedish prosecutor to testify

Lawyers for Julian Assange wrapped up their case against his extradition to Sweden on Tuesday and challenged a Swedish prosecutor to "come to London" to defend her handling of the sexual misconduct allegations facing the WikiLeaks founder.

"Today, we have seen a Hamlet without the princess - a prosecutor who has been ready to feed the media within information, but has been unwilling to come here," Assange attorney Mark Stephens told reporters outside a south London courtroom. Stephens called on Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny to attend the extradition hearing when it resumes Friday and "subject yourself to the cross-examination."

Assange has not been charged with a crime, but Swedish prosecutors want to question him in connection with sexual misconduct allegations related to separate incidents last August. Assange denies the accusations, and his attorneys are fighting his extradition on procedural and human-rights grounds.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Julian Assange • Sweden • United Kingdom • WikiLeaks
Tuesday's most intriguing people
NYU professor Wafaa Bilal, shown here in 2007 as part of a Web camera exibit, says his body is rejecting the camera implanted in his head.
February 8th, 2011
11:50 AM ET

Tuesday's most intriguing people

Wafaa Bilal

The Iraqi-born college professor who last year had a camera surgically implanted into the back of his head, underwent surgery Friday to remove a part of the device.  Despite treatments with antibiotics and steroids, Bilal's body is rejecting part of the apparatus, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education blog.

Once the wounds from surgery are healed, the photography professor, whose back-of-the-head camera sends an image every minute to his website, said he wants to implant a lighter device in his skull. “I’m determined to continue with it,” he told the Chronicle blog.

Diego Fagundez

The 15-year-old soccer phenom joins the New England Revolution, a Major League team, for practice this month, capping a whirlwind ride that will allow him to skip college and most of high school.

Fagundez, who will train against players twice his age on the first team, said that he is ready.

“I think it would be a fight for me and a challenge,’’ Fagundez told the Boston Globe newspaper. “But I think I would do good. Even if I’m on the floor 100 times, I’ll still get up, and I’ll keep fighting.’’

Carlene Firmin

The 27-year-old on Wednesday will become the youngest-ever black woman to be named a Member of the British Order by Queen Elizabeth, according to the Guardian newspaper. As a senior policy officer at Race on the Agenda. Last year she founded the Girls Against Gangs project, supporting women affected by gang violence.

"I am grateful and feel very privileged to be receiving the MBE award," Fermin told the Guardian. "It has been fantastic to see the impact my work has had on policy affecting girls' and women's issues and I am excited about what the future will hold," she told the Guardian.

Brian Delancey

The 19-year-old senior from Krop High School in Florida's Miami-Dade County helped lead his teammates to the basketball playoffs this year. Yet because he is a Bahamian native who came to the U.S. three years ago and transferred to Krop just this academic year, the Florida High School Athletic Association has decided to drop the team from playoff contention—and may strip them of their victories this season altogether.

Maria Rodriguez of the Florida Immigration Coalition will argue before a District Judge Tuesday that the ban is a federal violation.

A Florida high schools athletics official said the case is not about academics, but basketball.

“The educational part – sitting in the classroom, doing homework – is a right,” M. Denarvise Thornton Jr., associate executive director of the Florida High School Athletic Association, said to the Miami Herald newspaper. “This being an extracurricular activity, it (playing basketball for the school) is a privilege."

– CNN's Nicole Dow, Sara Pratley and Alicia Stewart contributed to this report.

Gotta Watch: Wrong-way truck crash; cold revenge; puppy in a box
February 8th, 2011
10:48 AM ET

Gotta Watch: Wrong-way truck crash; cold revenge; puppy in a box

One lucky truck driver - Well, maybe lucky isn't the word, but after driving the wrong way on the highway, crashing into a guard rail and surviving without major injuries, I'd say the driver should count his or her blessings. Perhaps what's even more amazing though is the cell phone video that captured the entire thing.

FULL POST

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Filed under: Animals • Dogs • Gotta Watch • Movies • Showbiz • Weather • Winter weather
On the Radar: Assange in court, what's next in Egypt, Toyota report
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will be in court in London again Tuesday.
February 8th, 2011
09:59 AM ET

On the Radar: Assange in court, what's next in Egypt, Toyota report

Will Assange be extradited? – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange returns to court in London. He's fighting extradition to Sweden, where he's wanted for questioning in a sex crimes investigation. The 39-year-old Australian has repeatedly said he is innocent and is confident he will be exonerated. He has not been charged with a crime.

Assange's lawyers have said Swedish prosecutors are attempting to discredit him because of his work with WikiLeaks, which published reams of classified government intelligence last year. The attorneys speculated that if Assange were extradited, Sweden could hand him to the U.S., which could charge him with espionage, leading to his confinement in Guantanamo Bay prison and his execution. The proceeding in London should wrap up today.

Protesters in peril? – There have been no reports of gunfire in Cairo, Egypt, today, but Middle East expert Fouad Ajami cautions that that is no indication protesters are safe. He says this is the most dangerous phase of the conflict for protesters because many of their identities are known to security services. If President Hosni Mubarak's administration survives, people speaking against Mubarak could face severe consequences, he says. Ajami is a professor of Middle East studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.

Meanwhile, the White House's position toward Egypt appears to be changing, and details are surfacing of abuse that journalists have suffered while trying to cover the protests. See CNN.com's full coverage of the crisis.

Toyota report due – A report is expected today about the government's 10-month investigation into sudden acceleration problems in Toyota cars and trucks. The Department of Transportation and scientists from NASA conducted the study at the request of Congress, following a string of consumer claims that Toyota cars and SUVs accelerated out of control.

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Filed under: Courts • Egypt • Espionage • Guantanamo • Julian Assange • Justice • On the Radar • Protest • WikiLeaks
Cavaliers make history with latest loss
Cleveland Cavaliers coach Byron Scott says a win is imminent. "It's going to happen real soon," he told the Cleveland paper.
February 8th, 2011
08:31 AM ET

Cavaliers make history with latest loss

The Cleveland Cavaliers lost a record 25th straight game Monday night, falling to the Dallas Mavericks 99-96.

The loss an NBA record eclipsed the franchise's 24-game losing streak that spanned two seasons and ended in 1982.

On Monday, the Cavs had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Jamario Moon and Antawn Jamison both elected to pass the ball rather than take one last heave at the basket.

"J-Moon just really wasn't aware," Cleveland coach Byron Scott said, according to The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer. "That's the bottom line. Because he had really a pretty good look."

Scott, encouraged by his team's effort of late, said a win is coming, sooner or later.

"We've just got to keep playing like that, and it's going to happen," Scott told the Plain Dealer. "It's going to happen real soon."

The Cavs have not won in the new year. Their last victory was December 18 against the New York Knicks.

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Filed under: Basketball • Sports
Tuesday's live video events
February 8th, 2011
07:37 AM ET

Tuesday's live video events

Watch continuing live coverage of the events unfolding in Egypt on CNN.com Live.

Today's programming highlights...

Ongoing coverage - Crisis in Egypt

11:00 am ET - Afghanistan briefing - Two U.S. Army colonels brief reporters from Afghanistan on current operations in the war-torn country.

FULL POST


Filed under: On CNN.com today
Egypt crisis: More danger for protesters?
Egyptian anti-government demonstrators read after waking up from a night spent on Tahrir square.
February 8th, 2011
03:14 AM ET

Egypt crisis: More danger for protesters?

Read full coverage and examine a timeline of the unrest in Egypt updated continually by CNN reporters worldwide. Send your photos and video to iReport and see CNN in Arabic here. See also this roundup of timely, insightful views on the wave of upheaval in the Arab world.

[Update 11:33 a.m. Cairo, 4:33 a.m. ET] As protests in Egypt entered a third week Tuesday, the scene in Cairo's Tahrir Square might appear relatively calm. Cameras no longer captured images of Molotov cocktails and chunks of concrete flying through the air. But some say more danger could come.

[Update 8:53 p.m. Cairo, 1:53 p.m. ET] Google executive Wael Ghonim has been released in Egypt, the company announced. "Huge relief - Wael Ghonim has been released. Our love to him and his family," the company tweeted shortly after 8 p.m. in Cairo (1 p.m. ET). Ghonim's Twitter account, which had not had a posting since he went missing January 28, carried a tweet around the same time. "Freedom is a bless (sic) that deserves fighting for it," the tweet said, ending with the hashtag ".Jan25," a reference to the Egypt protests.

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Filed under: Egypt • Protest