Good morning, and TGIF! Here are some of the stories we’re following today:
1. Obama unveils deportation relief for immigrants
The president addressed the nation Thursday night to announce sweeping immigration reform by executive order. His move would essentially allow 5 million undocumented immigrants to remain in the U.S. as long as they meet certain criteria, including that they’ve been in America for five years and have children who are American citizens or are legal residents. “If you register, pass a criminal background check and you’re willing to pay your fair share of taxes — you’ll be able to apply to stay in this country temporarily, without fear of deportation,” Obama said from the White House. While reform activists lauded the move, Republicans called the order a constitutional overreach unfair to legal immigrants. Read more in POLITICS.
2. Death toll rises as record snow creates headaches
A dozen people have now died in the massive snowstorm that has brought some 7 feet of snow since Tuesday in the Buffalo, New York, area. The latest victims of the historic storm were two residents of a nursing home who passed away after they were evacuated because of a possible sagging roof. Roof collapses are becoming a problem as the snow melts and brings the threat of widespread flooding. Meanwhile, the Buffalo Bills’ home game with the New York Jets on Sunday has been moved to Monday in Detroit because of all the snow. Read more in NEWS.
3. Snow surprise: Alaskan city is where powder isn’t
While record snow has socked much of the nation this past week, Alaska’s largest city has seen barely a flake. This time of year there should be about 17 inches of snowfall in Anchorage, but so far, there’s been less than 4 inches — and that snow has since melted last month. That lack of snowfall also comes with warmer temperatures: The average high has been a “balmy” 48 degrees in the city, meteorologists say. Read more in NEWS.
4. FSU gunman was paranoid of government: cops
A 31-year-old lawyer, Myron May, was identified as the shooter who returned to his former school — Florida State University — and opened fire in a library early Thursday. Three people were injured, and two remain hospitalized. May was killed in a shootout with police. Friends and family of May described him as a “good person” who wanted to open up his own law firm. But police say he also had a paranoid side, as evidenced by Facebook interactions with a group that believes they are victims of mind control and are being “targeted.” Read more in NEWS.
5. Michael Brown’s father calls for calm
Ahead of the expected grand jury decision this month, Michael Brown Sr. released a video asking people to remain vigilant and work toward “positive change” no matter the outcome. His son, Michael Brown, was killed by a white Ferguson, Missouri, police officer in August — triggering civil unrest and rioting in the streets. Officials, business owners and local residents are worried that protests over his death could resurface if the grand jury decides not decide to indict the officer, Darren Wilson. Read more in NEWS.
6. Bill Cosby quiet as another accuser surfaces
The funnyman didn’t make any mention of the controversy surrounding him during a performance Thursday night in the Bahamas. Some fans told NBC News that they do want to hear the truth — although a concert probably isn’t the right venue. But the number of women coming forward claiming Cosby sexually assaulted them in past decades is growing. A Florida nurse became the fifth woman in recent weeks to say Cosby had drugged and raped her in 1976. Cosby’s lawyer has denied these allegations, calling them lies. Read more in POP CULTURE.
And now this …
The German and Brazilian governments have come together to build this tower in the Amazon. It’s taller than the Eiffel Tower and can take readings on changes in the air every five seconds.