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Courtesy BCA Forensic Science Services

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The body of a woman found in a drainage ditch 35 years ago has been identified as that of an 18-year-old Texas hitchhiker who was assaulted and killed by a former Minnesota state trooper, state authorities said Tuesday.

Michelle Yvette Busha’s remains were identified over the weekend through DNA testing. Her body was found on May 30, 1980, and had been buried anonymously at a cemetery in the southern Minnesota city of Blue Earth for the past three decades.

Robert Leroy Nelson, a state trooper at the time, had confessed to killing a woman nine years later, but investigators had been unable to determine her identity.

“This was a case of not whodunit, but who was she,” said Faribault County Sheriff Michael Gormley. Busha’s remains were exhumed in August and DNA was collected as part of a Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension effort to identify dozens of unidentified human remains in the state. BCA Forensic Science Services Director Catherine Knutson said investigators built a DNA profile, and entered that information into a national database for missing persons in mid-February.

Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy told the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security Tuesday that it took five days before he was informed that a car carrying two agents struck a security barrier outside the White House.

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DAMASCUS — Syrian state media said the country’s air defenses shot down a U.S. reconnaissance aircraft Tuesday in a northwestern province along the Mediterranean coast. U.S. officials said they were looking into the reports.

The SANA state news agency said the aircraft was downed north of the coastal city of Latakia. It provided no further details. State television broadcast footage of what it said was the wreckage, including a wheel and electronic parts. Soldiers in camouflage could be seen loading some of the debris into the back of a truck.

JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has declared victory after a tight national election appeared to give him the upper hand in forming the country’s next coalition government.

In a statement released on Twitter, Netanyahu says that “against all odds” his Likud party and the nationalist camp secured a “great victory.”

Initial exit polls showed Netanyahu’s Likud Party deadlocked with the center-left Zionist Union. But the results indicated that Netanyahu would have an easier time cobbling together a majority coalition with hardline and religious allies.

Texas A&M Will Bid To Host U.S. Presidential Debate

Mar 17, 2015
Courtesy: www.tamu.edu

Texas A&M University is putting the finishing touches on its bid to host a presidential debate in 2016, a move that could elevate Texas even more as a factor in the race for the White House. 

Texas A&M and other interested sites across the country face a March 31 deadline to submit applications to the Commission on Presidential Debates, the private firm that the Democratic and Republican parties have entrusted to organize the presidential and vice presidential debates during the general election. 

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