Breaking News of the Day: Philip Seymour Hoffman Found Dead in His New York Apartment

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: Philip Seymour Hoffman Found Dead in His New York Apartment
- -

The actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his New York Apartment Sunday morning of an apparent overdose. The New York Times report:

The official said Mr. Hoffman, 46, was found in his West Village apartment around 11:30 a.m. by a friend who had become concerned at not being able to reach Mr. Hoffman.

Investigators found a syringe in his arm and an envelope containing what is believed to be her0in, the official said.

"It's pretty apparent that it was an overdose," the official said. "The syringe was in his arm."

Hoffman won the Academy Award for Best Actor in 2005 with his portrayal of Truman Capote in the film "Capote."

He was most recently known for his role in "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" He was slated to star in two more installments.

Sad, sad news. Rest in peace.

Breaking News of the Day: Armed Gunman Posting To Facebook During Hostage Crisis [UPDATED]

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: Armed Gunman Posting To Facebook During Hostage Crisis [UPDATED]
- -

An armed ex-military man has taken a hostage in a downtown Pittsburgh office building today -- but the negotiation process was being hindered by the suspect's frequent emotional, misspelled posts to his Facebook page, (since deleted) where concerned friends were pleading with him to end the situation peacefully.

Klein Michael Thaxton so far has not made any demands and has been cooperative, according to police, but he wrote on Facebook that people will "never have to woryy about me again"; "this life im livn rite now i dnt want anymore ive lost everything"; and "how this ends is up to yall."

Police Chief Nate Harper says that while it's helpful that Thaxton can see "that people are concerned about his well-being, it is a distraction for negotiating."

UPDATE: Thaxton has surrendered to police. No one was injured.

Breaking News of the Day: Protests Escalate Across Mideast

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: Protests Escalate Across Mideast
- -

Well, we knew the violent protests against the now infamous anti-Muslim video weren't going to end with a statement from President Obama -- thousands of demonstrators currently are assaulting U.S. and Western diplomatic compounds in Tunisia, Sudan, and Yemen, and authorities are trying to quell the attacks with tear gas and guns.

Since Tuesday's fatal aggression by militants in Benghazi and Cairo, protests have spread to Afghanistan, India, Bahrain, Jordan, Iran, Iraq, Morocco, Kuwait, Syria, Pakistan, and Qatar.

The message of the American flag-burning protesters seems to be universal: "Death to America."

In Iraq, one banner read: "Freedom doesn't mean offending two billion Muslims."

[wsj]

Breaking News of the Day: Pussy Riot May Be Freed From Jail

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: Pussy Riot May Be Freed From Jail
- -

About time -- Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced today that the three imprisoned members of Pussy Riot will be freed, saying further time behind bars would be "unproductive."

The band members' case comes up for appeal October 1.

The women already had spent more than five months in jail when they were convicted in August of "hooliganism driven by religious hatred" and sentenced to two years in prison.

[ap]

Breaking News of the Day: Venezuela Refinery Blast Kills 24, Injures Many

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: Venezuela Refinery Blast Kills 24, Injures Many
- -

According to CNN, a gas leak at northwestern Venezuela's Amuay oil refinery created a massive explosion, killing 24 people, including a 10-year-old boy, with at least 84 hospitalized.

The blast happened this morning around 1:11 a.m., and at this time the origin of the gas leak remains unknown. Officials also say that the site is under control.

[cnn]

More Breaking News of the Day: Armstrong Stripped Of 7 Tour de France Titles

Favorite
More Breaking News of the Day: Armstrong Stripped Of 7 Tour de France Titles
- -

So it's come to this: Lance Armstrong has dropped his fight against the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency -- he's "finished with this nonsense" -- and he's been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.

He also will lose the bronze medal he won at the 2000 Olympics and all other titles, awards, and money he won from August 1998 forward.

"There comes a point in every man's life when he has to say, 'Enough is enough,'" Armstrong said. "For me, that time is now."

The 40-year-old maintains his innocence, calling the USADA's case against him "an unconstitutional witch hunt" and saying its handling of his case was "one-sided and unfair."

[nyt]

Breaking News of the Day: 2 Killed In Shooting Near Empire State Building [UPDATED]

Favorite
Breaking News of the Day: 2 Killed In Shooting Near Empire State Building [UPDATED]
- -

A disgruntled worker opened fire near the Empire State Building just after 9 a.m. this morning, killing one and injuring nine before he was shot and killed by police in a chaotic gunfight.

The shooter -- identified as 58-year-old Jeffrey Johnson, 58 -- was laid off about a year ago from apparel company Hazan Imports in New York City. The man he killed is reported to have been the manager of the business where Johnson had worked.

According to witness Chris Ogden, "He shot the guy in the head. The guy went down. He took a second shot when he was down."

The shooter then "walked down the block, like nothing was happening, real casual," Ogden said. "We were screaming from the top, 'It's the guy in the grey suit!'"

[dailybeast]