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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – President Barack Obama may face the voters in two months, but several Democrats are already laying the groundwork for a future White House run. Up-and-coming Democratic stars like Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker and others are making the rounds before state delegations and at private events surrounding the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. Vice President Joe Biden, a potential 2016 candidate, will speak Thursday night, shortly before Obama. Another possible 2016 contender, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, is keeping a low profile, spending only a day in Charlotte. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is half a world away on an 11-day tour of the Asia-Pacific region. She has denied interest in running for president again.
A fire burning near Butte Meadows has grown to 1,000 acres. Cal-Fire says the blaze in the Mill Creek drainage was very active Tuesday. Captain Scott McLean says firefighting aircraft was unable to help because of the heavy smoke in the area. At last report, the fire was 10 percent contained. The “Mill Incident” is burning in a remote area that’s near where Highway 32 intersects with Highway 36.
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) – Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney is appearing alongside his running mate, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan. Romney says Ryan is a man of what he calls “great steadiness” and “unquestioned integrity.” The former Massachusetts governor says Ryan is a “shining exception” in a political world of pettiness. The two appeared together for the first time as the Republican presidential ticket on Saturday morning in Virginia. They faced supporters while standing on the USS Wisconsin, a retired aircraft carrier. Just hours after his campaign confirmed Ryan as his selection, Romney says Ryan won’t demonize his opponents. Romney says that Democrats may disagree with Ryan’s policies, but he doesn’t know anyone who doesn’t respect his character and judgment.
WEMBLEY, England (AP) – The U.S. women’s soccer team won the Olympic gold medal Thursday, avenging one of its most painful defeats with a 2-1 victory over Japan. Carli Lloyd scored in the eighth and 54th minutes for the Americans, who lost to the Japanese in penalty kicks at last year’s World Cup final. Yuki Ogimi scored in the 63rd minute for Japan. The U.S. team has won three consecutive Olympic titles and four of five since women’s soccer was introduced at the 1996 Atlanta Games. The match drew 80,203 fans to Wembley Stadium, breaking the record for a women’s soccer game at the Olympics. Canada won the bronze earlier Thursday, beating France 1-0.
OAK CREEK, Wis. (AP) – Police say local Wisconsin authorities had no contact with the gunman who killed six people at a Sikh temple before the attack. Police Chief John Edwards said Monday that authorities in suburban Milwaukee didn’t have any run-ins with Wade Michael Page before Sunday’s shootings. The shootings ended when Page was fatally shot by police. FBI Special Agent in Charge Teresa Carlson also says the agency isn’t aware of any past threats made against the temple. Carlson says the agency had no reason to believe he was planning or capable of such violence. Carlson also says the FBI is looking for a white male seen at the temple after the shooting. She called him a person of interest who detectives want to interview. But authorities stressed they believe Page acted alone.
OAK CREEK, Wis. (AP) – Police in Wisconsin say seven people are dead at a Sikh temple near Milwaukee, including the suspected gunman. Greenfield Police Chief Bradley Wentlandt says tactical officers have been through the temple where shots were fired about 10:30 a.m. Sunday. He says they found four people inside the building and three people outside. He says one of those killed outside is the suspect, who fired on the first officer to arrive. Wentlandt says that officer fired back, killing the suspect. He says the officer is now at an area hospital in surgery. Wentlandt says police do not believe a second shooter was involved. He also says the best information he has is that two people, including the officer who was shot, were taken to hospitals.
CENTENNIAL, Colo. (AP) – Colorado prosecutors have formally charged a former doctorate student with 24 counts of murder in the shooting at an Aurora movie theater. Twenty-four-year-old James Holmes appeared Monday and was also formally charged with 116 counts of attempted murder. Twelve people were killed and 58 people were wounded or injured. The breakdown of the charges was not immediately clear. He’s also charged with a one count of possession of explosives. Authorities say he booby trapped his apartment. Holmes was arrested early July 20 outside a Century 16 theater in Aurora during a midnight showing of the new Batman movie. Legal analysts expect his court the case to be dominated by arguments over his sanity. Holmes was a student at the University of Colorado Denver before withdrawing last month.
NICOLAUS, Calif. (AP) – A Northern California school district is paying $40,000 to settle a former football player’s claims that punishment for missing practice turned abusive. The Marysville Appeal-Democrat reports that former East Nicolaus High School player Justin Williams alleged in a Sutter County Superior Court lawsuit that football coach Mark Varnum ordered 11 teammates to tackle him repeatedly in August, leaving him with a partially collapsed lung and concussion. Former Sutter County Sheriff J. Paul Parker had said there wasn’t enough evidence for criminal charges after his office investigated the case. The coach is no longer listed as an employee on the school’s website. Williams will receive about $25,000 of the settlement with the East Nicolaus High School District when he turns 18 after attorney fees and expenses are deducted.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – A Los Angeles County coroner’s investigator says there were no signs of foul play in the death of Sylvester Stallone’s 36-year-old son, who was found in his home. Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said prescription bottles were recovered in the investigation of Sage Stallone, but he could not say what kind or how many, and whether they had a role in his death. Winter says Stallone was found unresponsive by an employee and a relative Friday afternoon, and police arrived and confirmed he was dead. No suicide note was found. He says an autopsy will be performed in the next few days and investigators will look into Stallone’s medical history, but a cause of death is likely to take several weeks while toxicology tests are performed.