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Another storm smacks the plains: For the second time in a week, a major storm paralyzed parts of the nation’s midsection, dumping a fresh layer of heavy, wet snow across the region Tuesday and making travel perilous from the Oklahoma panhandle to the Great Lakes. Above, Tedd Hendrix of Sedalia, Mo., freed a cable line from downed branches and tried to tie it off to keep it out of the road.

Sydney Brink • Sedalia Democrat via Associated Press ,

News roundup around the nation and the world

  • Wire services
  • February 26, 2013 - 11:29 PM

WASHINGTON

FDA halts drug study after teen’s death

The Food and Drug Administration halted Amgen’s studies of its thyroid drug Sensipar after the death of a 14-year-old patient in a company trial. The FDA said that it is unclear whether the drug had a role in the patient’s death and that it is still gathering information, but has shut down all studies of the drug in children. Sensipar is approved in adults to treat overactivity of the parathyroid gland.

CALIFORNIA

Search for missing sailors called off

The Coast Guard on Tuesday suspended its search for four people, including two young children, who were believed to be missing after a distress call from what was said to be a sinking sailboat in the ocean south of San Francisco. Officials are investigating the possibility that the incident was a hoax. Searchers using aircraft and sea vessels found “no signs of distress, no signs of debris, no reports of missing people,” Coast Guard spokesman Mike Lutz said.

MARYLAND

Judge upholds WikiLeaks charges

A military judge at Fort Meade refused to dismiss the charges against the Army private accused of treason for providing reams of government secrets to WikiLeaks. The ruling clears the way for Pfc. Bradley Manning to probably plead guilty on Thursday to some of the lesser charges against him. He would still face the most serious charge — treason — when his trial begins in June.

NEW JERSEY

Christie snubbed by conservative event

Gov. Chris Christie, who spoke last year at the Conservative Political Action Conference’s Chicago conclave, wasn’t invited to the group’s 2013 Washington meeting, in part because he praised President Obama during Hurricane Sandy, according to a person familiar with the group’s decision. Christie also angered CPAC organizers when he criticized House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, for not bringing a Sandy aid package to a floor vote, said the person, who asked not to be identified because he was not an authorized spokesman.

PENNSYLVANIA

Guard killed with homemade weapon

A federal correctional officer was killed Monday night by an inmate at the high-security Canaan penitentiary in Pennsylvania, according to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Officer Eric Williams, 34, of Nanticoke, Pa., was working in a housing unit when he was stabbed with a homemade weapon, the agency said. He had worked with the bureau for less than two years. The bureau said that authorities placed Canaan on lockdown after the incident.

EGYPT

Opposition groups to boycott elections

In another blow to the nation’s rocky democratic transition, the main opposition coalition announced that it will boycott upcoming parliamentary elections because it doesn’t trust the Islamic-led government of President Mohammed Morsi to guarantee a fair vote. The decision by the secular and liberal National Salvation Front was widely expected after the nation’s highest court ruled this month that provisions in the election law were unconstitutional. NEWS SERVICES

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