Good morning, and happy Tuesday. Here are six of the top stories we are following this morning at NBC News:
1. Sub hunt for jet on hold as crews await more ‘pings’
Search crews scouring the southern Indian Ocean for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 will wait to deploy remotely operated submarines until after a pinger locator is no longer needed. Officials are still hoping the pinger can pick up potential black box transmissions, although there have been no new signal or satellite image leads since the weekend. Read more in NEWS.
2. Pistorius trial: ‘I wasn’t kind to her like I should have been’
Oscar Pistorius, the South African track star on trial for the murder of his girlfriend, took the stand again Tuesday and read text messages they shared revealing their volatile relationship. In one of the texts, girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp admitted, “I’m scared of you sometimes.” Pistorius claims he shot Steenkamp at their home last year after mistaking her for an intruder. Read more in NEWS.
In dramatic testimony, Pistorius also described the events leading up to when he fatally shot Steenkamp early on Valentine’s Day 2013:
3. UConn knocks off Kentucky to win NCAA title
The Huskies, led by point guard Shabazz Napier, thumped the Wildcats 60-54, giving the University of Connecticut their fourth national title since 1999. UConn didn’t even play in last year’s tournament because of academic sanctions. But the team clawed its way to the top this year, in large part to Napier, whose story of going to bed “starving” because he didn’t have money caught the media's attention. Read more at NBC SPORTS.
4. Tensions rise in Ukraine over renewed threat of civil war
After Russia annexed Crimea, tensions are building up in Ukraine in areas where ethnic Russians are looking for similar independence. Ukraine’s new government launched an “anti-terrorism” operation Monday night in a city where pro-Russia demonstrators had seized buildings. A threat of civil war looms over the country as NATO officials say Russia has mobilized tens of thousands of troops on Ukraine’s borders. Read more in NEWS.
5. Fort Hood gunman fired almost three dozen shots
Spc. Ivan Lopez, 34, killed three people and wounded 16 others during his eight-minute rampage at the military base last week. A detailed timeline of events reveals how he shot people at three locations and ended up spending at least 35 bullets. Read more in NEWS.
6. Deadly tornadoes touch down in Deep South
A powerful storm spawned tornadoes and flooded parts of the Southeast, killing at least two people and injuring 20 others. A 9-year-old Mississippi girl was killed as waters rose, and her body was found Monday evening. Read more in NEWS.
… What’s trending today?
Paulina Gretzky graced the cover of Golf Digest’s May issue — but not without controversy.
The magazine was criticized for choosing the daughter of hockey great Wayne Gretzky for the risqué shoot. And while she’s engaged to pro golfer Dustin Johnson, Gretzky herself isn’t a golfing star.
Photographer Cy Cyr decided to poke fun at the now-viral cover, rounding up some of his friends to imitate Paulina Gretzky’s midriff-baring pose.