Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit could face disqualification after a second drug test came back positive. Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski will retire after this coming season. And a Florida man pleaded guilty in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
👋 It’s Laura. It’s Wednesday, and you know what that means. Wednesday’s news!
But first, think they had some beef with these cows? 🐄 A herd of cattle blocked this car, ending a 13-mile police chase. The sheriff thanked the “bovine unit” for their service.
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Medina Spirit failed another drug test
A horse is a horse, of course, unless the horse is Medina Spirit. The New York Times reported Wednesday a split sample of Medina Spirit’s drug test after the Kentucky Derby confirmed the presence of betamethasone, further jeopardizing the horse’s status as the winner of the race. Lawyer Clark Brewster, who represents Medina Spirit’s owner Amr Zedan, said the laboratory at the University of California, Davis confirmed the presence of betamethasone, a corticosteroid. Though legal as a therapeutic aid for horses, betamethasone is illegal when found in the blood on race day because it’s a possible performance enhancer. Churchill Downs said Medina Spirit would be disqualified as the Kentucky Derby winner if a second test came back positive. If that happens, runner-up Mandaloun would be declared the winner.
- Churchill Downs bans Bob Baffert for two years after Medina Spirit tests positive.
- Owner willing to drop thousands to troll Baffert by naming horse ‘Bad Test Bob.’
- Trainer for could-be winner Mandaloun awaits decision with ‘no expectation.’
Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit could be disqualified after drug tests. (Photo: The Associated Press)
🎶 Vaccine and a haircut, two bits
As vaccination rates in communities of color hit hard by COVID-19 lag in many states, President Joe Biden wants to combat vaccine hesitancy by offering shots right at the shops. Biden unveiled plans Wednesday to recruit 1,000 Black-owned barbershops and salons to provide “Shots at the Shop” and promote the nationwide vaccination effort. The administration is teaming up with the Black Coalition Against COVID, the University of Maryland Center for Health Equity, and SheaMoisture to engage Black-owned businesses to support vaccine education and outreach efforts.
- The World Health Organization renamed COVID-19 variants with Greek letter names – and here’s why.
San Pedro High School students promote vaccination May 24 at a school-based event for students 12 years and older in San Pedro, Calif. Schools turn to mascots, prizes and contests to entice eligible students to get vaccinated against the coronavirus before the summer break. (Photo: Damian Dovarganes, AP)
What everyone’s talking about
- Instant karma? Boaters flying Pride flags say they were harassed. Then, the boat coming at them ‘literally blew up.’
- Teen who pushed bear away from dogs has some advice: ‘Don’t do what I did.’
- San Jose shooting: Gunshots ring out in bodycam footage released by police.
- Teacher put on paid leave after speaking against student pronoun, gender identity policy.
- Rogue pack of pachyderms: Chinese authorities try to keep 15 wandering elephants out of a major city.
Hackers target meatpackers
In the wake of a massive cyberattack, JBS USA, the world’s largest meat supplier, has had shutdowns at nine of its U.S. beef plants. Officials expect to ramp production back up starting Wednesday. All of the company’s meatpacking facilities in the USA have experienced some disruption to operations, union officials said. JBS halted processing at its five biggest beef plants in the USA, which handle more than 22,000 cattle a day. Reuters reported JBS had stopped livestock slaughter at plants in several states. The company’s CEO, Andre Nogueira, said in a statement that “the vast majority of our beef, pork, poultry and prepared foods plants will be operational tomorrow.”
- Cybersecurity attack hits world’s largest meat supplier JBS’ IT systems in the US and Australia. Here’s what we know.
JBS says it was the target of an “organized cybersecurity attack." (Photo: David Zalubowski, AP)
Capitol riot suspect pleads guilty
Pictured carrying a Trump flag on the Senate floor during the Capitol riot, a Florida man entered a guilty plea Wednesday for his role in the assault. Paul Hodgkins, 38, of Tampa, pleaded guilty to a lone count of obstructing a government proceeding, one of five criminal charges initially lodged against him. He could face a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison, but prosecutors recommended a reduced sentence because of his cooperation with authorities and clean criminal record. During the hearing, Hodgkins acknowledged that he was not permitted to enter the Capitol where he joined the mob that sought to disrupt the confirmation of President Biden’s election win. One of more than 400 suspects swept up in the federal investigation, Hodgkins is the second to enter a guilty plea.
- Capitol Police union warns of departures after riot, continued overtime strain.
- ‘They need to hang’: Pennsylvania woman arrested in Capitol riot investigation.
Protesters attack the Capitol on Jan. 6. (Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AP)
- An emerging danger: Drug cartels spread terror with weaponized drones.
- Jack Nicklaus: Media should ‘accommodate’ Naomi Osaka’s anxiety.
- Iran’s largest warship, the Kharg, catches fire, sinks under unclear circumstances.
- Trump’s not a blogger anymore: Ex-president shut down blog launched weeks ago.
Coach K headed for retirement
A big winner is leaving college basketball. Duke men’s coach Mike Krzyzewski, “Coach K,” will retire after this coming season, according to a report Wednesday, ending a wildly successful run that began more than 40 years ago and included more than 1,000 wins and five national championships. Krzyzewski, 74, is the winningest coach in college basketball history with 1,170 victories, with all but 73 coming with the Blue Devils. After three rebuilding seasons to start his tenure, which began in 1980, Krzyzewski led Duke to the men’s NCAA Tournament in every year but one from 1984 through 2019. Krzyzewski was inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski cuts down the nets at the 2010 NCAA men's Final Four national basketball championship after Duke beat Butler 61-59. (Photo: EILEEN BLASS, USA TODAY)
A break from the news
- 🏡 Home prices rose by more than 50% in these 10 markets.Is yours on the list?
- 🏳️🌈 Reading rainbow: Here are10 new LGBTQ books to celebrate Pride Month.
- 🦟 Skeeters, ticks and wasps – oh my! Here’s how to stay safe from 5 common but dangerous bugs this summer.
This is a compilation of stories from across the USA TODAY Network. Want this news roundup in your inbox every night? Sign up for The Short List newsletter here.
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