CDC: HALF OF U.S. ADULTS HAVE GOTTEN AT LEAST ONE COVID VACCINE SHOT: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said yesterday (April 18th) that half of all U.S. adults — 50.4 percent — have gotten at least one Covid-19 vaccine shot, and 32.5 percent of all U.S. adults have been fully vaccinated. Overall, 75 percent of adults say they’re willing to get vaccinated or already have had at least one shot, according to the latest AP-NORC poll, up from 67 percent in January. Meanwhile, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease specialist, said in several Sunday news show interviews yesterday that he expects the government will likely move to return to using Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine this week, after its use was paused due to very rare blood clot cases in a handful of people. Fauci said resuming use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine may be done with restrictions on who should take it based on age or gender or a broader warning. He said, “I would be very surprised if we don’t have a resumption in some form by Friday.”
SUSPECT ON THE RUN IN TEXAS AFTER THREE KILLED IN AUSTIN: A 41-year-old former sheriff’s deputy was on the run in Texas Sunday (April 18th), wanted in the fatal shooting of three people in Austin late Saturday morning. Interim Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon said of suspect Stephen Broderick, “The victims were all known to this suspect. At this point, we do not think this individual is out there targeting random people to shoot. That does not mean he is not dangerous.” Chacon didn’t say how Broderick knew the victims, who were two women and one man, or give a motive. He did say a child was involved, but the child has been located and is safe. Travis County District Attorney Jose Garza said Broderick, who was a property crimes detective with the Travis County sheriff’s office, was arrested for sexual assault of a child last June and was released on $50,000 bond. He resigned after being arrested.
THREE KILLED, THREE INJURED IN SHOOTING AT WISCONSIN TAVERN: Three people were killed and three others injured in a shooting early Sunday (April 18th) in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Police have a suspect in custody, who Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth said earlier had been asked to leave the Somers House Tavern and then returned and opened fire. Beth said it’s not clear exactly why the suspect was removed from the tavern, which he said was “very busy” at the time of the shooting. Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers called the shooting a “senseless tragedy.”
NSA ADVISER SAYS ‘WILL BE CONSEQUENCES’ IF RUSSIAN OPPOSITION LEADER NAVALNY DIES: Amid reports that Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is rapidly deteriorating in prison, with his doctor warning Saturday that he “could die at any moment,” U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan warned yesterday (April 18th) that there, quote, “will be consequences” if he dies. Appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, Sullivan said, “We have communicated to the Russian government that what happens to Mr. Navalny in their custody is their responsibility and they will be held accountable by the international community.” He wouldn’t say what actions would be taken, but stated, “we have communicated that there will be consequences if Mr. Navalny dies.” Navalny, a fierce critic of President Vladimir Putin, has been on a hunger strike for several weeks after being sentenced to more than two-and-a-half years behind bars in early February, with a court saying he violated the terms of his probation while recovering in Germany from nerve-agent poisoning that he blamed on the Kremlin. The probation violation related to a 2014 embezzlement conviction that Navalny charged was fabricated and politically motivated. He was arrested when he returned to Russia in January from Germany.
CLOSING ARGUMENTS TODAY IN CHAUVIN TRIAL: The prosecution and defense will give their closing arguments today (April 19th) after three weeks of testimony in the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd last May. Chauvin is facing charges of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
RESCUERS CONTINUING TO LOOK FOR NINE BOAT CREW MEMBERS IN GULF OF MEXICO: Rescuers were in the Gulf of Mexico some eight miles off the coast of Louisiana for a sixth day yesterday (April 18th), looking for nine missing crew members of a capsized lift boat. The Seacor Power lift boat, which has three legs that can be lowered to the sea floor to lift it out of the water as a temporary platform, capsized last Tuesday in a storm. Six people were rescued alive, and since then four bodies have been found. The boat was headed to an oil platform at the mouth of the Mississippi River when it capsized.