Nation Briefs

Coroner’s office says lion escaped cage to attack

DUNLAP, Calif. – The Fresno County coroner’s office says a lion used its paw to lift a partially closed door and escape a smaller cage before attacking and killing a 24-year-old woman cleaning a larger enclosure.

Coroner David Hadden said Thursday the investigators told him that the 5-year-old African lion had been fed when he charged at Dianna Hanson, breaking her neck and killing her with an apparent swipe of its paw.

Late-winter storm sweeps into New England

BOSTON – A late-winter storm that buried parts of the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic swept into New England on Thursday, bringing snow, rain, strong winds, big waves and fears of coastal flooding.

The region braced for the brunt of the storm overnight Thursday and into today. Powerful waves and high winds were expected to cause more trouble than snow from Rhode Island to Maine.

The National Weather Service predicted up to 7 inches of heavy, wet snow in southeastern Connecticut and wind gusts up to 50 mph. A coastal flood warning was in effect for east-facing shores in Massachusetts, with up to a 3-foot surge at high tide in some areas.

Obama signs expanded Violence Against Women Act

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama signed expanded protections for domestic violence victims into law Thursday, renewing a measure credited with curbing attacks against women a year and a half after it lapsed amid partisan bickering.

The revitalized Violence Against Women Act also marked an important win for gay-rights advocates and Native Americans, who will see new protections under the law, and for Obama, whose attempts to push for a renewal failed last year after they became entangled in gender politics and the presidential election.

Associated Press