2 police officers killed in Santa Cruz
Police arrive on the scene in the aftermath of the shooting Tuesday of two police officers in Santa Cruz, California.
February 26th, 2013
10:07 PM ET

2 police officers killed in Santa Cruz

Two officers with the Santa Cruz Police Department in California were fatally shot Tuesday, as was the lone suspect, Santa Cruz County Sheriff Phil Wowak told reporters.

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Filed under: California • Crime • Gun violence
February 26th, 2013
08:33 PM ET

Shooting on campus of Coastal Carolina University

Police were searching for whoever shot an individual Tuesday night on the campus of Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina.

The incident took place at 7:22 p.m. at University Place Apartments, which is one of the school's residence halls, Doug Bell, a school spokesman, told CNN.

The suspected shooter left in a vehicle, said Bell, who added that the school was asking students and university personnel to stay inside.

The victim was taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center in Myrtle Beach, he said.

"The shooting is not ongoing," the dean of students' Twitter page said. "Police continue to search for one suspect. Stay indoors."

More than 9,000 students attend the school, which is located on 630 acres about 15 miles northwest of Myrtle Beach.

Coastal Carolina University was founded in 1954 as Coastal Carolina Junior College. It became an independent university in 1993.

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Filed under: South Carolina • U.S. • Uncategorized
February 26th, 2013
06:05 PM ET

Missing since January, U.S. couple found in Peru

An American couple that had gone missing in Peru has been found safe, Peru's Ministry of Tourism and Commerce told CNN Tuesday.

Jamie Neal and Garret Hand, both 25 and from the San Francisco area, left the United States last November and chronicled their trip through South America on social media until last month.

That's when their Internet postings stopped and calls to their cell phones went unanswered. A spokesman for Peru's Ministry of Commerce and Tourism told CNN the couple, located in the Amazon region of Peru, told authorities they had no idea their families considered them missing.

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Filed under: Peru • U.S.
Senate OKs Hagel as defense chief
Hagel's challenges include winding down U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan
February 26th, 2013
05:12 PM ET

Senate OKs Hagel as defense chief

The U.S. Senate on Tuesday confirmed Chuck Hagel as defense secretary after a bruising political fight. The former Nebraska senator, a Republican, will succeed Leon Panetta at the Pentagon.

Hagel's nomination was subject to harsh criticism from some Republicans over past statements on sensitive political and national security matters. His shaky performance at his confirmation hearing and subsequent political wrangling over his selection and on unrelated matters did not help his case.

But efforts to further delay his nomination were swept away on Tuesday as the Senate confirmed him, 58 to 41.

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Senate ends Hagel filibuster
February 26th, 2013
02:35 PM ET

Senate ends Hagel filibuster

The embattled nomination of Chuck Hagel as U.S. defense secretary cleared a Senate test vote Tuesday, breaking Republican attempts to delay consideration further and setting up what is expected to be a final vote in favor of his confirmation later in the day.

Hagel's nomination has been subject to harsh criticism from some Republicans over past statements on sensitive political and national security matters. A shaky performance at his Senate confirmation hearing and subsequent political wrangling over his selection and on unrelated matters have not helped his case.

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Filed under: Military • Pentagon • Politics
Fatal hot air balloon crash
February 26th, 2013
02:05 PM ET

19 killed in hot air balloon crash in Egypt

[Updated at 2:05 p.m. ET] The death toll has climbed to 19, officials say.

[Updated at 6:57 a.m. ET] The death toll in Tuesday's hot air balloon explosion in Egypt - the world's deadliest hot air balloon accident in at least 20 years - has risen to 18, according to the state-run MENA news agency.

Twenty-one people, many of them tourists, were in the balloon when it dropped about 300 meters (almost 1,000 feet) in the city of Luxor, the Egyptian interior ministry said.

[Posted at 1:57 a.m. ET] Fourteen tourists on a hot air balloon ride in southern Egypt were killed Tuesday when the balloon exploded and plummeted to the ground, authorities said.

It was the deadliest hot air balloon accident in the world in at least 20 years.

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February 26th, 2013
01:45 PM ET

ICE: We're releasing detainees due to cuts

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is releasing "several hundred" people out of U.S. detention facilities to other "less costly" forms of supervision because of potential forced budget cuts set to kick in on Friday, the agency said Tuesday.

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Filed under: Immigration
February 26th, 2013
01:14 PM ET

Coast Guard: Missing boat 'possibly a hoax'

The U.S. Coast Guard is suspending its search off the California coast for a distressed 29-foot sailboat that was carrying a couple and two children, and explained the incident is "possibly a hoax," Cmdr. Don Montoro said Tuesday.

The mission's cost has reached hundreds of thousands of dollars since Sunday, he said.

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Senate panel OKs treasury secretary nominee
February 26th, 2013
10:57 AM ET

Senate panel OKs treasury secretary nominee

The Senate Finance Committee has approved the nomination of former White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew to be treasury secretary.

The nomination of Lew (pictured) now goes to the full Senate for approval.

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Justices block suit over foreign surveillance
February 26th, 2013
10:33 AM ET

Justices block suit over foreign surveillance

The U.S. Supreme Court has just blocked a lawsuit over the federal government's sweeping electronic monitoring of foreigners suspected of terrorism or spying.

The 5-4 conservative majority on Tuesday morning concluded that the plaintiffs - a group of attorneys, journalists and others - lacked "standing" or jurisdiction to proceed, without a specific showing they have been monitored. The National Security Agency has in turn refused to disclose monitoring specifics, which detractors call "Catch-22" logic.

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Filed under: Courts • Justice • Lawsuit • Supreme Court • Technology
February 26th, 2013
10:05 AM ET

3 killed as blizzard batters U.S. heartland

[Updated at 10:05 a.m.] The Midwest's second blizzard in as many weeks has contributed to the deaths of at least three people, officials say.

Gobs of wet, heavy snow plopped to the ground early Tuesday in the Kansas City area along the Kansas and Missouri border in what the National Weather Service called a "crippling, historic blizzard." The storm could bring up to 18 inches of snow to parts of Kansas, Missouri and Illinois a day after plastering Oklahoma and Texas.

One person died in Woodward, Oklahoma, when a roof collapsed, the city's mayor said. The other two deaths came in Kansas on Monday in separate weather-related accidents on Interstate 70, the Kansas National Guard said.

CNN storm tracker | Photos | Share images

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Stock rebound under way?
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Monday, the day the Dow dropped 216 points.
February 26th, 2013
09:47 AM ET

Stock rebound under way?

The morning after the Dow and S&P 500 suffered their biggest one-day declines of the year, U.S. stocks are showing signs of rebounding.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 62 points shortly after the trading day began Tuesday morning.

The Dow had dropped 216 points, or 1.5%, on Tuesday, partly on fears that mixed election results in Italy could produce governmental gridlock there and possibly revive Europe's debt crisis.

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Housing prices shoot up, report says
February 26th, 2013
09:26 AM ET

Housing prices shoot up, report says

Here's some welcome news for homeowners: After years of downturn, housing prices shot up in 2012.

Prices rose 7.3% in 2012, according to a closely-watched reading released Tuesday.

The report from S&P Case-Shiller covered home prices across 20 major housing markets nationwide in the final three months of the year. It comes ahead of a government report due later Tuesday which is expected to show a continued rise in new home sales.

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Filed under: Economy • Housing
February 26th, 2013
07:43 AM ET

Tuesday's live events

$85 billion in automatic across-the-board cuts will happen unless President Obama and Congress come to an agreement by March 1.  Watch CNN.com Live for continuing coverage on this story.

Today's programming highlights...

10:00 am ET - Ben Bernanke on Capitol Hill - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is slated to discuss the economy and U.S. monetary policy before a Senate committee today, but he may also discuss the threat of forced spending cuts.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Budget • Congress • Dollars & Sense • Economy • On CNN.com today • Politics
Vatican reveals Pope Benedict XVI's new title
February 26th, 2013
07:27 AM ET

Vatican reveals Pope Benedict XVI's new title

[Updated at 8:26 a.m. ET] We're getting details about the future of the first pope to resign in nearly 600 years.

The pontiff will keep the name Benedict XVI and the title "his holiness" once he retires. He also will be known as pope emeritus, emeritus pope or Roman pontifex emeritus, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told reporters at the Vatican on Tuesday.

Benedict surprised the world when he announced earlier this month that he would retire effective this Thursday.

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February 26th, 2013
06:21 AM ET

Italian election rattles world markets

World markets retreated Tuesday as a big vote for anti-austerity parties in Italy's elections left the eurozone's third biggest economy in political deadlock, sparking fears of a revival of the region's debt crisis.

European stock markets were sharply lower, led by a 4% plunge on Italy's index of leading shares. Italy's borrowing costs increased, as the yield on its 10-year bond moved up towards 5%, triggering similar moves in other weaker eurozone states such as Spain and Portugal. The euro fell to just above $1.30.

Final results showed the center-left coalition of Pier Luigi Bersani winning by a very slim margin in the lower house of parliament but unable to control the Senate after a strong showing by former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and a protest movement led by comedian turned politician Beppe Grillo.

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Filed under: Economy • Italy • Politics
France: We won't negotiate with kidnappers
Cameroonian security officials stand at the vehicle a French family was driving before being kidnapped.
February 26th, 2013
05:20 AM ET

France: We won't negotiate with kidnappers

France will not negotiate with the Islamist rebels who kidnapped a French family in Cameroon, Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Tuesday.

"We do not negotiate on these bases, with those groups," Le Drian said on French radio station RTL. "We will use all possible means to secure the release of hostages."

The radio announcement comes a day after rebels in Nigeria released a chilling video of the family that was abducted in neighboring Cameroon.

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Filed under: Cameroon • France
February 26th, 2013
05:17 AM ET

Polio workers attacked again in Pakistan

Health workers administering polio vaccinations to children came under attack in northern Pakistan on Tuesday, killing their police escort, authorities said.

Two women administering the shots entered a house on the outskirts of Mardan when two assailants on a motorbike opened fire of them, according to Danishwar Khan, a local police official.

Attacks like these have become a frequent occurrence in some parts of Pakistan and have left 10 workers dead.

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Rocket fired from Gaza lands in Israel
Israeli bomb technicians inspect the remains of a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip and near Ashkelon on Tuesday.
February 26th, 2013
01:38 AM ET

Rocket fired from Gaza lands in Israel

A rocket fired from Gaza landed in southern Israel on Tuesday in the first such attack since a cease-fire took hold in November.

Israeli police said it did not receive any reports of injuries from the rocket, which landed on a road outside the town of Ashkelon, about 15 kilometers (9 miles) from Gaza.

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Police: Officer sexually assaulted 6 women
Sergio Alvarez, a West Sacramento police officer, assaulted at least six women since October 2011, police said Monday.
February 26th, 2013
01:17 AM ET

Police: Officer sexually assaulted 6 women

A California police department is doing some soul searching after arresting one of its own on allegations of sexually assaulting half a dozen women.

While in uniform, a West Sacramento police officer assaulted at least six women since October 2011, police said Monday. The officer was fired, arrested and investigators are looking for other potential victims.

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Filed under: California • Crime