In our news wrap Wednesday, public schools in Los Angeles reopened a day after officials canceled classes due to an email threat that cited bombs and guns. Also, schools all over Pakistan were closed in observance of the one year anniversary of an attack by the Taliban that killed 140 victims, most of whom were children.
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Two major stories tonight.
In Baltimore, a mistrial, a jury deadlocked over the guilt or innocence of a policeman in the death-in-custody of Freddie Gray. The incident last April touched off violent protests, and six officers were charged. This was the first case to go to trial.
And the Federal Reserve is doing something it hasn't done since 2006: It's raising interest rates. Today's long-awaited announcement hikes a key short-term rate by a quarter-point from near zero. We will explore both the Fed's decision and the Baltimore mistrial, in full, after the news summary.
In the day's other news, Wall Street surged on the Fed's reasoning that the economy is finally strong enough to stand a rate hike. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 224 points to close near 17750. The Nasdaq rose 75 points, and the S&P 500 added 29.
Public schools in Los Angeles reopened today. Officials canceled classes for 640,000 students yesterday over an e-mailed threat that cited bombs and guns. It was later deemed a hoax. Students returning this morning encountered stepped-up security, and the school district's decision was still a topic of dispute.
KANIAH CHAPMAN, Los Angeles Student:
I'm really glad they did shut down the school, because, for all we know, it could have been our school or any other school in — around this district that could have been bombed, and a lot of kids would have gotten hurt.
BLUE SANDEFUR, Parent of Los Angeles Student: It didn't inconvenience me, but I do think that they overreacted. I certainly think they overreacted.
New York City's school system received a similar threat, but it remained open.
Schools all over Pakistan closed today, marking one year since a Taliban attack that killed more than 140 people, nearly all of them children. A special ceremony in Peshawar began with a moment of silence, honoring those who died in the assault on an army-run school. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif addressed today's crowd and promised vengeance on behalf of the victims.
In Yemen, a day-old cease-fire appeared in peril, as continued fighting killed at least 42 people. Clashes broke out in five provinces, including around the besieged city of Taiz in Southwestern Yemen. Security officials said shelling by Houthi rebels killed six civilians. They said field commanders and fighters from both sides were ignoring cease-fire orders. The violence threatened to undermine peace talks in Switzerland.
The Supreme Court of India is laying down the law about air pollution in New Delhi, deemed the world's most polluted city. The court today ordered a three-month ban on sales of large diesel vehicles, imposed higher tolls for trucks, and mandated that taxis switch to natural gas.
Environmentalists welcomed the moves, and urged India's government to see that they're put into effect.
They are going to look at emission standards for vehicles, pollution from power plants, and public transport strategy for the industry. It's a great beginning, and we just hope that this — the momentum that we're building up, this should continue. We must not slow down.
Air pollution contributes to more than 600,000 deaths each year across India.
The highest court in Japan dealt a setback to advocates of gender equality. A decision today upheld a law that requires married couples to use the same surname. The law dates to the 1800s. About 96 percent of married women in Japan take their husband's surname.