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NATION IN BRIEF: Al, Tipper Gore, to separate after 40 years together

The Associated Press. Former Vice President Al Gore and his wife Tipper, listen to the national anthem at the conclusion of inaugural ceremonies on Capitol Hill on Jan. 20 in Washington. Former Vice President Al Gore and his wife, Tipper, are separating after 40 years of marriage.

The Associated Press. Former Vice President Al Gore and his wife Tipper, listen to the national anthem at the conclusion of inaugural ceremonies on Capitol Hill on Jan. 20 in Washington. Former Vice President Al Gore and his wife, Tipper, are separating after 40 years of marriage.

Al, Tipper Gore, to separate after 40 years together

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Former Vice President Al Gore and his wife, Tipper, are separating after 40 years of marriage that included a White House run when their sunny relationship offered a counterpoint to President Bill Clinton's philandering.

According to an e-mail circulated among the couple's associates on Tuesday, the Gores said it was ''a mutual and mutually supportive decision that we have made together following a process of long and careful consideration.''

The Gores were telling friends they ''grew apart'' after 40 years of marriage and there was no affair involved, according to two longtime close associates and family friends, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because it was a personal matter.

Ted Koppel's son, 40, found dead in NYC apartment

NEW YORK -- A son of former ABC News anchor Ted Koppel was found dead in an apartment after a day of bar hopping with a man he'd just met, a law enforcement official said Tuesday.

A drunken Andrew Koppel, 40, had been placed in a back bedroom of the Manhattan apartment to sleep it off and apparently had been dead at least four hours before anyone realized, said Belinda Caban, who lives in the apartment.

He was declared dead about 1:30 a.m. Monday, New York Police Department Detective John Sweeney said. The cause of his death hadn't been determined, but no evidence indicated criminality, police said.

Ted Koppel is the former longtime anchor of the ABC News show ''Nightline.'' Andrew Koppel was one of his four children.

14-year-old brandishes gun in NY school

BLAUVELT, N.Y. -- A 14-year-old boy pulled a pellet gun at a suburban New York middle school on Tuesday and pointed it at a teacher, then waved it at passing cars outside until a retired police officer wrestled it away, police said.

Orangetown Police Chief Kevin Nulty said the boy was taken into custody and no one was injured.

The boy was in an office with a teacher and another student at South Orangetown Middle School when he pulled the realistic-looking pellet gun from his backpack ''with no prompting'' at about 9 a.m., Nulty said. He wordlessly pointed it at the teacher, the chief said.

Ft. Hood shooting suspect solemn, quiet in hearing

FORT HOOD, Texas -- Wearing his Army uniform and sitting solemnly in a wheelchair, the psychiatrist accused of gunning down 13 people at Fort Hood made his first courtroom appearance Tuesday where his attorneys won a delay in his case.

Maj. Nidal Hasan, who was paralyzed after being shot by two Fort Hood police officers, only spoke at the hearing when answering questions about the proceedings with a soft: ''Yes, sir.''

His attorneys sought a delay in his Article 32 hearing because they needed more time to review reams of documents they recently received and still lacked other key documents, including the FBI ballistics report and a government review on the Nov. 5 shootings.

FBI: 'Granddad Bandit' has robbed 21 banks

ST. LOUIS -- A bald, heavyset man who has robbed 21 banks in the eastern and central U.S. is proving to be so elusive that the FBI has given him a name -- the ''Granddad Bandit'' -- and announced plans Tuesday to post a digital picture of him on billboards in several states in hopes of catching him.

The man, who is believed to be 50 to 60 years old, is suspected in 21 bank robberies in 12 states, the most recent on May 18 at a Regions Bank branch in St. Louis County, the FBI said.

Wildlife officials find baby elk left on doorstep

LA GRANDE, Ore. -- Congratulations, wildlife officials! It's a baby elk.

Officials at a U.S. Forest Service office in La Grande, Ore., last week found a baby elk left on their doorstep along Highway 30. It was dropped off last Wednesday night and is estimated to be less than two weeks old.

Officials are seeking the person who brought in the baby elk to find out where they originally found it, so that it can be returned to its mother.

They said the baby elk probably was not abandoned, because mother elk regularly leave their babies hiding in tall grass or brush while they divert a threat, such as a coyote, and then return to their young. Officials believe the person who found the baby likely thought the animal was lost and needed to be saved.