New COVID origins data point to raccoon dogs in China market
BEIJING — Genetic material collected at a Chinese market near where the first human cases of COVID-19 were identified show raccoon dog DNA comingled with the virus, adding evidence to the theory that the virus originated from animals, not from a lab, international experts say.
“These data do not provide a definitive answer to how the pandemic began, but every piece of data is important to moving us closer to that answer,” World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Friday.
Many believe the coronavirus most likely jumped from animals to people at a market in Wuhan, China. But Wuhan is home to labs involved in collecting and studying coronaviruses, fueling theories scientists say are plausible that the virus may have leaked from one.
Officials are preparing security in case of Trump indictment
NEW YORK — Law enforcement officials in New York are making security preparations for the possibility that former President Donald Trump could be indicted in the coming weeks and appear in a Manhattan courtroom in an investigation examining hush money paid to women who alleged sexual encounters with him, four law enforcement officials said Friday.
There has been no public announcement of any timeframe for any potential vote on whether to indict the ex-president.
Trump’s lawyer, Joseph Tacopina, said that if Trump is indicted, “we will follow the normal procedures.”
Chauvin pleads guilty in tax case
MINNEAPOLIS — The former Minneapolis police officer convicted in the 2020 killing of George Floyd pleaded guilty Friday to two tax evasion counts, admitting that he didn’t file Minnesota income taxes for two years due to “financial concerns.”