NEW YORK

Filing says census

changed to aid GOP

A Republican redistricting expert advocated for adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census to give an electoral edge to white people and Republicans, opponents of the move alleged in a court filing Thursday.

The filing in Manhattan federal court said a trove of newly discovered documents revealed that Thomas Hofeller, a longtime Republican gerrymandering guru, played a key role in pushing the Trump administration to include a citizenship question on the census for the first time since 1950.

The change, announced in spring 2018, seems poised for approval by the U.S. Supreme Court, which heard arguments in April and is likely to rule by July. It's not clear if the Hofeller documents might affect the pending case, though the American Civil Liberties Union apprised the high court of the latest developments Thursday in a letter.

 

NEW YORK

US measles count

nears 1,000, CDC says

U.S. health officials on Thursday reported 971 measles cases so far this year, the highest tally in 27 years, and experts say it's not clear when the wave of illnesses will stop.

Measles, once common in the U.S., became rare after vaccination campaigns that started in the 1960s. A decade ago, there were fewer than 100 cases a year.

The new numbers from the Centers for Disease control and Prevention pushed the U.S. tally higher than the 963 illnesses reported for all of 1994. The nation last saw this many cases in 1992, when more than 2,200 were reported.

 

TOKYO

Japan, Russia accuse

each other of buildups

Russia and Japan accused each other of military buildups as their foreign and defense ministers met in Tokyo on Thursday for talks that failed to make progress on decades-long island disputes.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a joint news conference after the talks that Russia was concerned about Tokyo's plan to build a pair of land-based Aegis Ashore missile defense systems, saying they pose a “potential threat to Russia.”

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono accused Russia of a military buildup on Russian-controlled islands claimed by both countries.

 

WASHINGTON

Man dies after

setting self on fire

A Maryland man who set himself on fire at a national park near the White House has died.

U.S. Park police told news outlets that 33-year-old Arnav Gupta died from his injuries late Wednesday. Police say officers and U.S. Secret Service agents responded to a report of the burning man earlier on the Ellipse that afternoon and extinguished the flames. Gupta was hospitalized in critical condition.

 

LONDON

Socialite von Bulow,

cleared of crime, dies

Danish-born socialite Claus von Bulow, who was convicted but later acquitted of trying to kill his wealthy wife in two trials that drew intense international attention in the 1980s, has died. He was 92.

Von Bulow, who moved to London after he was cleared, died at his home there on Saturday, his son-in-law, Riccardo Pavoncelli, told The New York Times.

The tall, aristocratic von Bulow was charged with putting his wife, Martha “Sunny” von Bulow, into an irreversible coma to gain her fortune so he could live with his mistress, a soap opera actress. He was convicted of attempted murder in 1982 at a trial in Newport, R.I. The conviction was overturned on appeal, and he was acquitted at his second trial in 1985.

 

SALT LAKE CITY

Police confirm body

found is missing girl's

A body found after a five-day search is that of a 5-year-old girl taken from her home and killed by her uncle, Utah police confirmed on Thursday.

Elizabeth "Lizzy" Shelley's remains were located in a heavily wooded area less than a block from her home on Wednesday, but authorities could not immediately confirm it was her.

The body was found after the girl's 21-year-old uncle, Alex Whipple, gave his lawyer a map of where she was hidden. In exchange, prosecutors promised not to pursue the death penalty.

 

The Associated Press