U.S. online sales surge, shoppers throng stores on Thanksgiving evening

U.S. online sales surge, shoppers throng stores on Thanksgiving eveningAt the start of the holiday season consumer spending rose 16.8 percent year-over-year until 5 p.m. ET on Thursday, according to Adobe Analytics, which tracked 80 percent of online transactions at the top 100 U.S. retailers. Surging online sales and a shift away from store shopping have thinned the crowds typically seen at stores on Thanksgiving evening and the day after, Black Friday, for the past two years. Crowds at stores in many locations around the country were reported to be strong, according to analysts and retail consultants monitoring shopper traffic across the U.S.



Texas state trooper killed in traffic stop, suspect on the run

Texas state trooper killed in traffic stop, suspect on the runThe shooting took place in Fairfield, about 90 miles (145 km) south of Dallas, and the suspect was later spotted in Waller County, about 50 miles (80 km) northwest of Houston. Waller County sheriff's deputies appeared to have him surrounded near Prairie View, according to radio dispatch chatter. "The suspect drove into Waller County, located by a Waller County Deputy, shots have been fired in the area of Liendo Parkway and Wyatt Chapel.



Houston-area woman charged with mailing explosives to Obama, Texas governor

Houston-area woman charged with mailing explosives to Obama, Texas governorJulia Poff, 46, was ordered held in jail last week ahead of trial after she was indicted on charges of mailing packages last year that were designed to kill, transporting explosives and other criminal counts, court documents showed. "Poff presents a real safety risk to witnesses and others in the community," U.S. Magistrate Judge Frances Stacy wrote in a five-page order outlining the case. Poff, who was charged earlier this month and pleaded not guilty last week, reached out to the Houston Chronicle to defend herself, the newspaper reported on its website on Thursday.



U.S. asks Venezuela for access to detained Citgo executives

U.S. asks Venezuela for access to detained Citgo executivesWashington has asked the government of leftist Nicolas Maduro for access to Venezuelan-American executives of U.S.-based refiner Citgo detained in Caracas this week, a State Department official said on Thursday. Five of six Citgo [PDVSAC.UL] executives arrested on graft allegations are U.S. citizens, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday. All six men are being held in the headquarters of Venezuela's military counterintelligence department in Caracas, the country's state prosecutor said in a statement on Thursday.



Investigators find no conspiracy in murder of Baltimore detective: police

Investigators find no conspiracy in murder of Baltimore detective: police(Reuters) - Investigators in Baltimore have found no conspiracy behind the shooting death of a homicide detective killed the day before he had been set to testify against fellow officers accused of graft, the city's police commissioner said on Wednesday.





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