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Actor Bill Paxton dies...Driver arrested in Mardi Gras crash...Ohio man accused of kidnapping 3 family members

By The Associated Press | Posted - Feb. 26, 2017 at 10:56 a.m.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Actor Bill Paxton has died from complications of surgery at age 61. A family representative issued a statement today on his death but provided no further details. Paxton's many memorable roles included an astronaut in "Apollo 13" and a treasure hunter in "Titanic." He received three Golden Globe nominations for his role as a polygamist in the HBO series "Big Love."

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Authorities in New Orleans say a 25-year-old man is suspected of driving into a crowd while intoxicated last night, sending 21 people to the hospital. Police say Neilson Rizzuto is being held at the city jail on a number of charges. It happened on one of the busiest nights of Mardi Gras, when thousands of people throng the streets to watch the elaborate floats and catch beads and trinkets tossed from riders.

WILLOUGHBY, Ohio (AP) — Police near Cleveland say a 34-year-old man who kidnapped three family members was taken into custody after his aunt escaped a basement where she had been tied up. Authorities say the man used chloroform to overpower his father Friday and tied him up in the basement of the father's home in Willoughby. Police say he lured his mother and aunt to the house and tied them up, too. The aunt escaped yesterday and called 911.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal prison population is on the decline, but that could change under the new attorney general. Jeff Sessions has signaled that he sees a central role for the federal government in combating drug addiction and violence as well as in strict enforcement of immigration laws. The result could be in an increase not only in the number of drug prosecutions brought by the Justice Department but also in the average length of sentence prosecutors pursue.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says President Donald Trump wasn't elected "to spend his time with reporters and celebrities." Spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders says instead of attending the White House Correspondents' Association dinner in April, the president will be focusing on "what he can to do to help better America." She also tells ABC's "This Week" that amid strained relations with the press, it would be "kind of naive" to think that "we can all walk into a room for a couple of hours and pretend that some of that tension isn't there."

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