CALIFORNIA

Five killed in fire

at abandoned house

Five people were killed and another critically injured in a fire that broke out Sunday at an abandoned home in Fresno, authorities said.

Fire crews pulled six people from the boarded-up home engulfed by flames and thick smoke, said Battalion Chief Lawrence French. Four were pronounced dead at the scene; the other died at a hospital.

Investigators were working to determine what caused the fire, French said.

One of the boarded-up windows had been pried open by people who were squatting. All of the dead were adults the coroner's office said. - AP
TEXAS

Lawmaker is elected mayor of Houston

Houston has elected longtime Democratic lawmaker Sylvester Turner as mayor of the nation's fourth-largest city in a tight race against Republican businessman Bill King.

Unofficial, final results show Turner, 61, beat King by more than 4,000 votes in Saturday's runoff. Turner's campaign was endorsed by President Obama.

Mayor Annise Parker, the city's first lesbian chief executive, was term-limited after six years in office. - AP
NEW YORK

Religious group's real estate windfall

The Jehovah's Witnesses are poised to make $1 billion or more when they sell their worldwide headquarters and other properties in New York City's Brooklyn borough in preparation for their move upstate.

The Witnesses' move to the town of Warwick will remove their red neon Watchtower sign from the skyline but free up hundreds of thousands of square feet in the trendy neighborhood at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge.

A Jehovah's Witnesses spokesman says the move will allow the organization to operate more efficiently.

The Witnesses put their 733,000-square-foot headquarters on the market this month along with a nearby apartment building and a vacant lot. The church has not announced an asking price but real estate experts called $1 billion "a conservative estimate." - AP
TEXAS

Ax-wielding student shot and killed

University of North Texas campus police have fatally shot a student who allegedly threatened a campus officer with an ax.

University officials told the Dallas Morning News that the shooting happened near the Denton campus early Sunday. The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office identified the man as Ryan McMillan, who turned 21 Saturday.

UNT spokeswoman Margarita Venegas said police responded about 1 a.m. Sunday to a report that someone was breaking car windows about two blocks from campus. Venegas said when the officer arrived, McMillan approached him with the ax in his hand and the officer shot him. The Texas Rangers are investigating.

"This is a tragic event that saddens us as a university community," UNT president Neal Smatresk said in a statement. "We offer our condolences to the individuals, their families and all involved." - AP