AP Top U.S. News At 2:21 p.m. EST

Streaming release of 'Interview' test for industry
ATLANTA (AP) -- Sony's "The Interview" has been a hacking target, a punchline and a political lightning rod. Now, with its release online at the same time it debuts in theaters, it has a new role: a test for a new kind of movie release....

Power returns to Mississippi town after storm
COLUMBIA, Miss. (AP) -- Authorities say they have restored all power in the Mississippi town of Columbia, two days after a powerful tornado swept through, killing four people....

Key developments in case of 2 slain NYPD officers
Two New York police officers were ambushed Saturday by Ismaaiyl Brinsley after he had made threatening posts online, including a vow to put "wings on pigs" and references to high-profile cases of white police officers killing unarmed black men. After shooting the officers, Brinsley ran into a subway station and committed suicide....

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) -- Volunteers at the North American Aerospace Defense Command pretended to monitor Santa Claus as he made his storybook Christmas Eve flight, saying they used the heat signature from Rudolph's nose to "track" St. Nick over spots ranging from Australia to the Americas....

More protests sparked after shooting near Ferguson
BERKELEY, Mo. (AP) -- Demonstrators took to the streets for a second night after a white police officer in Berkeley, Missouri, killed a black 18-year-old who police said pointed a gun at him....

Lawmakers promise to help strapped oil-patch towns
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- Relief could be on the horizon for strapped public services in the Northern Plains' booming oil patch, as elected leaders in Montana and North Dakota move to steer more money into the region during the states' upcoming legislative sessions....

Snow-capped summits give Hawaii a white Christmas
HONOLULU (AP) -- A rare blizzard that dusted two island mountaintops gave tourists and residents in Hawaii a white Christmas....

Christmas Eve shooting kills 1 at Louisiana mall
GRETNA, La. (AP) -- A man who was shopping at a suburban New Orleans mall on Christmas Eve was shot to death at close range and a suspect was in custody, police said....

Dreaming of a white Christmas? Go West
NEW YORK (AP) -- If it's a white Christmas you're after, you'd better follow this familiar advice: Go West....

Bear loose in suburban Phoenix is finally wrangled
MESA, Ariz. (AP) -- Arizona wildlife managers say they believe the black bear that was spotted twice this week in a Phoenix suburb but eluded capture finally has been caught....

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