Good morning, and happy Friday! Here are some of the stories we're following today:
1. Uzi instructor's family 'feels sorry' for 9-year-old
The family of the Arizona shooting range instructor killed by a 9-year-old student during an Uzi lesson isn't blaming the child. "We know it was a tragic accident and that it's something that we're all going to have to live with,” Charles Vacca’s 19-year-old daughter Ashley told NBC News in an exclusive interview for the TODAY show Friday. Vacca's ex-wife, Anamarie, said her heart goes out to the little girl, who lost control of the weapon when she pulled the trigger. "I feel sorry for her and for her family,” she said. Read more in NEWS.
2. Joan Rivers 'resting comfortably' after medical emergency
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Comedian Joan Rivers remains in a Manhattan hospital where she was taken Thursday morning after she stopped breathing during a routine throat procedure at a clinic. The 81-year-old comedian's daughter, Melissa, who rushed to New York from Los Angeles, said only that her mother is "resting comfortably" and is surrounded bu family. She added, "We ask that you continue to keep her in your thoughts and prayers." Read more in NEWS.
3. 'If it gets in your brain, then you're hosed'
A Louisiana community has been rattled by news that its water supply is contaminated with an amoeba that can destroy brains. Doctors say drinking water that contains Naegleria fowleri is safe but if it the microbe slips into your nostrils, it could crawl up holes in the base of your skull and wage an all-out assault on your frontal lobe. Experts say locals may want to avoid freshwater. Read more in HEALTH.
4. Ukraine death toll jumps to 2,593
There's grim news out of eastern Ukraine — a sharp rise in the number of people killed since fighting erupted in mid-April. A United Nations official said the toll is 2,593 civilians and fighters and tops 3,000 if those who perished wjen Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 was shot down are included. Read more in NEWS.
5. Bob McDonnell corruption trial wrapping up
The jury in the Bob McDonnell corruption trial will hear closing arguments before beginning deliberations. The former Virginia governor and his wife Maureen are charged with taking more than $165,000 in gifts, trips and loans from vitamin entrepreneur Jonnie Williams in exchange for promoting his company's product. The couple could face decades in prison if convicted. Read more at NBC Washington.
6. Miley Cyrus' VMAs 'date' surrenders to cops
He went from being in the spotlight to out on bail in a matter of days. Jesse Helt, who accepted an MTV Music Video Award on behalf of singer Miley Cyrus turned himself into Oregon authorities, who had a warrant on him for a probation violation. Helt, who was tapped by Cyrus to bring attention to the issue of homeless youth, was freed on $2,500 cash bond. Read more in POP CULTURE.
What's trending today?
Preppy retailer Abercrombie & Fitch is finding out that desperate times call for desperate measures. Amid sinking sales, the company is trying to win back the youth market — by actually removing its ubiquitous logo from its clothing. It turns out that trend-setting teens aren't crazy about paying more to serve as walking billboards and prefer cheaper logo-less apparel.