(February 3) Today's Top Headlines - Top 10 stories of the day - The Explorer: Today's Headlines

(February 3) Today's Top Headlines - Top 10 stories of the day

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Posted: Monday, February 3, 2014 10:36 am

1. Seattle dominates Denver in a one-sided Super Bowl

The Seattle Seahawks defeated the Denver Broncos 43-8 Sunday night in one of the most lopsided Super Bowls in history. Denver's star quarterback, Peyton Manning, threw two interceptions — one led to Seattle's first touchdown drive; the other was run back 69 yards by linebacker Malcolm Smith for the Seahawks' second TD. Thousands of fans celebrated in the streets of Seattle, which hadn't won a major sports championship in 30 years. [CNN, CBS Sports]

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2. Philip Seymour Hoffman dies at 46

Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead of an apparent drug overdose on Sunday in his New York City apartment. He was 46. Hoffman, who struggled with substance abuse for years, had a hypodermic needle in his left arm. Police found two envelopes containing what they suspected to be heroin near his body. The versatile Hoffman won a best-actor Academy Award for his portrayal of Truman Capote in the 2005 biopic Capote. [Los Angeles Times]

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3. Bridgegate investigator denies there is evidence implicating Christie

New Jersey Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D), who is leading the Bridgegate investigation, said Sunday he had seen no evidence indicating that Gov. Chris Christie (R) was aware of the allegedly politically motivated lane closings and traffic jams while they were underway. A former Christie appointee has said the governor knew what was going on. Also on Sunday, a Christie staffer subpoenaed in the investigation resigned. [Reuters]

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4. Libya destroys its chemical arsenal

Syria reportedly is dragging its feet on destroying its chemical weapons, but Libya has worked quietly with the U.S. to dismantle its entire chemical arsenal over the past three months. The last artillery shell in the late Moammar Gadhafi's stockpile was destroyed on Jan. 26, officials said. Libya's cache of poisons was much smaller than Syria's, but arms control expert Paul Walker said the feat was still "a big breakthrough." [The New York Times]

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5. Western farmers gather to pray for drought to end

Religious leaders and farmers in Nevada and Utah over the weekend prayed for an end to droughts devastating crops across the West. The federal government declared 11 dangerously dry Western and Central states to be natural disaster areas several weeks ago, but the participants said that wasn't enough. "We can’t go to the Legislature to ask for help, (so) we decided to go to the guy upstairs," Utah dairy farmer Ron Gibson said. [The Associated Press]

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6. Abortion rate falls to a three-decade low

The abortion rate fell to 16.9 per thousand women of childbearing age in 2011, the lowest level in three-plus decades, according to a report to be released Monday by the pro-abortion-rights Guttmacher Institute. A 2008 study put the rate then was 19.4 per thousand women, with a total of 1.21 million that year. The rate peaked in 1981 at 29.3 per thousand women. The new figures indicate the resumption of a recently stalled downward trend. [The New York Times]

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7. Syrian forces hit Aleppo hard

Syrian military helicopters dropped "barrel bombs" — oil drums packed with explosives and shrapnel — on the besieged city of on Aleppo Sunday, pushing the death toll from a weekend offensive above 100. Western power say the bombs indiscriminately target civilians, who reportedly made up the majority of victims in the weekend attacks. Rebels said the bombings proved that President Bashar al-Assad had no real interest in peace talks. [The Daily Star]

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8. Man accused of threatening George W. Bush

A New York man was arrested over the weekend and charged with threatening to kill former president George W. Bush. The man, Benjamin Smith, allegedly said he would harm Bush to get to his daughter, Barbara Bush. Police tracked Smith, 44, through his cell phone after his mother found a letter in which he said he would "slay a dragon." They found him in his car in Manhattan, with several weapons. His lawyers said he never made any real threat. [The Celebrity Cafe]

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9. Woody Allen responds to his adopted daughter's abuse charge

Woody Allen called his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow's allegation that he sexually abused her "untrue and disgraceful," the film director's representative Leslee Dart said in a statement released Sunday. In a letter posted online by The New York Times, Farrow said that the alleged assault occurred when she was seven, in her adopted mother Mia Farrow's attic. Dart said an investigation long ago found "no credible evidence of molestation." [CNN]

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10. Manning takes a record fifth MVP award

Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning won a record fifth Associated Press MVP award over the weekend. No other NFL player has been awarded the honor more than three times. Manning was selected in a landslide, getting 49 votes from a panel of 50 media members in recognition of a record-setting season in which he threw for 55 touchdowns and 5,477 yards to lead his team into Sunday's Super Bowl against the Seattle Seahawks. [The Associated Press]

Compiled by theweek.com

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