3 Charged in Fire That Collapsed Atlanta Roadway
Three people are facing charges in the fire that led to the collapse of I-85 in Atlanta, which has led to traffic gridlock over the past several days. Basil Eleby, Sophia Bruner and Barry Thomas. Eleby was charged with first degree arson on Friday. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution he admitted to authorities that he had met the other two in the space the fire started and “discussed smoking crack cocaine” with them, but did not admit setting the fire. Thomas however, said he saw Eleby light a chair on fire. He and Bruner then ran in the opposite direction of Eleby, an affidavit says. Bruner and Thomas were charged with criminal trespass. The blaze caused damage to about 700 feet of the roadway. As many as 250,000 cars used the roadway each day, but they have been diverted to other routes.
Senate Democrats Collect Enough Votes for Gorsuch Block
Senate Democrats have secured enough votes to block the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. According to Senate rules, 60 votes are needed to proceed on a nomination. But the development only means that another conflict is coming with Republicans. Senate Majority Leader has vowed to use the so-called “nuclear option” in which rules are changed so that only a simply majority is needed to confirm Gorsuch. Legislators are deeply divided along party lines over confirming Gorsuch, who was nominated by President Trump. Republicans have praised him, while Democrats say his recent testimony is “diluted with ambiguity.”
Heavy Earthquake Hits Botswana
A 6.5 magnitude earthquake struck Botswana about 155 miles from the southern African nation’s capital of Gaborone on Monday. The U.S. Geological survey recorded the temblor at a depth of seven miles deep. Tremors were reportedly felt as far away as Johannesburg, South Africa. No word yet on injuries or damage. “I’m not sure where the epicentre was yet and that could be critical,” Botswana government spokesman Jeff Ramsay told Reuters. “I wouldn’t be surprised if some place there was some type of damage.”
10 Dead in St. Petersburg, Russia Subway Blast
A bomb exploded in a crowded subway train in St. Petersburg, Russia, killing 10 people and injuring 40 as Russian president Vladimir Putin was visiting the city. Police deactivated a second device discovered hours later in a busy subway station. Russian authorities are investigating the blast as a terror attack, but no organizations or individuals have claimed responsibility. “Everything was covered in smoke, there were a lot of firefighters,” Maria Smirnova, a student on a train behind the one where the bomb went off, told the Dozhd television channel. “Firefighters shouted at us to run for the exit and everyone ran. Everyone was panicking.” Russian trains and planes have been targeted repeatedly by Islamic militants, mostly connected to the insurgency in Chechnya and other Caucasus republics, according to the Associated Press.