In stunning news, Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday morning from the Vatican that he will resign his position as head of the Catholic Church, effective on February 28. This has already set off a flurry of speculation, largely because no pope has voluntarily done so since the year 1415.
The news is still coming in, but here's what we know so far:
UPDATE 4:07 p.m. EST: Authorities have identified the gunman as William Spengler, an ex-convict who spent 17 years in prison for murdering his 92-year-old grandmother in 1980.
Spengler was paroled for the crime in 1998.
Police also have not located Spengler's 67-year-old sister, who lived in the house with Spengler.
Authorities also report that a total of seven houses were destroyed in the blaze.
UPDATE 12:40 p.m. EST: Police chief Gerald Pickering says that the gunman, who was killed at the scene, either by police or from a self-inflicted wound, may have set a trap for first responders.
UPDATE 12:15 p.m. EST: The Associated Press is reporting that the gunman who killed the two firefighters is also dead. His body was found at the scene. The names of the two deceased firefighters, according to the Democrat and Chronicle, are Mike Chiapperini, 43, a volunteer firefighter and the Webster Police Department’s public information officer, and Tomasz Kaczowka. The names of the wounded firefighters are Joseph Hofsetter and Theodore Scardino.
Early Monday morning two firefighters were shot and killed when responding to a call in Webster, New York, just outside Rochester. After the firefighters arrived at 191 Lake Road, an unknown shooter fired at them as they left their truck, killing two of them and wounding two others. The wounded men are at a nearby hospital; one is in stable condition, the other is in guarded condition.
NOTE: This post will be continually updated as new information comes in. Video and photos are below. All times Eastern.
UPDATE 6:30 p.m.: Originally it was thought that Adam Lanza, the gunman, shot his mother at the Sandy Hook Elementary school, where she was a teacher's aide. ABC has learned that, in fact, Nancy Lanza was killed at her home (by her son) prior to the massacre. He then drove to the school, where he killed 20 children and six adults, before killing himself.
UPDATE 11:20: The networks have announced that Barack Obama will be reelected to a second term, after wrapping up the state of Ohio.
The 2012 presidential election between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will finally conclude tonight, as voters head to their local polls to choose who gets to sleep in the White House on January 20, 2013. We'll be following all the results very closely, adding the latest news as states close their polls and announce their winners.
Watch this post for updated information—election results, Senate races, ballot measures, battleground-state news—throughout the night:
Frankenstorm—a nickname for the potential combination of current Category 1 Hurricane Sandy and other storm systems in the North Atlantic and over the continental United States—is almost here, and for much of the East Coast, that means it’s time to get ready for lots and lots of rain, wind, snow and general meteorological mayhem.
A man drove from Long Island, New York, into Lower Manhattan earlier today in a van he thought was filled with explosives. He parked the van close to the Federal Reserve building, just a few blocks from the World Trade Center, and planned to detonate it using a cell phone from a nearby hotel.
Things kicked off around 9 p.m. Eastern in Danville, Kentucky, on the campus of Centre College, with Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan meeting for their one and only debate during this election campaign
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