Ky. campus on lockdown after possible shots

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. - Western Kentucky University was on lockdown Wednesday after someone reported seeing people with weapons in a building on a satellite campus and police later received reports that shots had been fired on the main campus, more than a mile away.

According to the university Web site, police searched the South Campus building but were not able to find any people with guns or witnesses who could confirm the reports.

They later sent a text message warning students to seek shelter after the reports of shots fired in or near Pearce Ford Tower residence hall, though those reports were also unconfirmed.

Foes of NYC term-limits extension seek court order

NEW YORK - Two members of the City Council went to court Wednesday to block the council from voting on Mayor Michael Bloomberg's proposal to change the term-limits law so he can run for a third term.

Brooklyn council members Bill de Blasio and Letitia James filed a petition asking the court to stop a scheduled council vote to increase the number of terms the mayor and current council members may serve. The lawmakers contend allowing a third term would violate the city's conflict of interest law.

Winds push S. California wildfire away from homes

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. - A 250-acre wildfire burned through brushy foothills in San Bernardino County on Wednesday but hot, gusty winds pushed it away from homes, authorities said.

The fire started close to Fontana east of Los Angeles and winds in excess of 30 mph pushed it west into the mountains and canyons of Rancho Cucamonga, county fire spokeswoman Angie Samayoa said.

The fire was 60 percent contained by midmorning.

Man who knew of cousin's ricin gets probation

SALT LAKE CITY - A judge on Wednesday sentenced a Utah man who knew his cousin had deadly ricin to two years probation and ordered him to pay a $500 fine.

Thomas Tholen, 54, pleaded guilty Aug. 11 to failing to report a crime. U.S. District Judge Tena Campbell handed down the sentence.

Tholen's cousin, Roger Bergendorff, 57, pleaded guilty Aug. 4 in Las Vegas to possessing a biological toxin and is expected to be sentenced Nov. 3 to three years and a month in federal prison.

Suspicious white powder sent to New York Times

NEW YORK - The New York Police Department is investigating a suspicious white powder sent to the offices of The New York Times.

The newspaper told employees that the substance was found Wednesday morning when an employee opened a letter on the 13th floor of company headquarters in midtown Manhattan. Police were called to the scene and are investigating to determine if the substance is harmful.

Powder-laced letters appear to be harmless

WASHINGTON - At least a dozen more suspicious letters turned up Wednesday at financial institutions nationwide, but all appear to be harmless, the FBI said.

Authorities said nearly 50 letters in all, some filled with white powder, have been sent to Chase Bank branches and federal regulatory offices in 11 cities: Atlanta, Chicago, Columbus, Ohio, Dallas, Denver, Newark, N.J., New York City, Oklahoma City, Phoenix, San Francisco and Washington.

So far, the letters have tested negative for poisonous or otherwise dangerous toxins, FBI spokesman Richard Kolko said in Washington.

Stevens case goes to jurors

WASHINGTON - Sen. Ted Stevens' fate is in the hands of a jury.

'The case is yours,' U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan told the eight women and four men shortly before noon Wednesday.

Stevens, 84, is charged with lying on Senate financial disclosure forms about $250,000 in home renovations and other gifts he received from his friend, millionaire oil contractor Bill Allen.

The longest-serving Senate Republican, Stevens is counting on a speedy verdict that will send him back to Alaska vindicated in time for Election Day. He is locked in a tight race with Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich, a Democrat.