10 things you need to know today: July 28, 2016

Obama touts Clinton's qualifications at the Democratic convention, prosecutors drop all remaining charges in Freddie Gray case, and more

President Obama appears with Hillary Clinton at the DNC
(Image credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

1. Obama touts Clinton's qualifications in convention speech

President Obama urged Americans to elect Hillary Clinton president, saying in a speech at the Democratic National Convention that "there has never been a man or a woman — not me, not Bill, nobody — more qualified." Vice President Joe Biden attacked Clinton's opponent, Republican nominee Donald Trump, calling him the most unqualified major party nominee in U.S. history. Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg — like Trump, a billionaire businessman — criticized Trump's business record, saying, "I'm a New Yorker, and I know a con when I see one."

The New York Times ABC News

2. Prosecutors drop all remaining charges in Freddie Gray case

Prosecutors on Wednesday dropped all charges against three Baltimore police officers awaiting trial in connection with the death of Freddie Gray in police custody last year, bringing the case to an end. Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby said the decision was "agonizing," but, after three other officers were acquitted earlier this year, she didn't believe a conviction was possible. She faulted what she said had been a biased police investigation. Lt. Gene Ryan, local Fraternal Order of Police president, called Mosby's comments "outrageous," and said "justice has been done." Five of the officers are suing Mosby for false arrest and defamation.

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The Baltimore Sun CNN

3. Trump challenges Russian hackers to find missing Clinton emails

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Wednesday publicly urged Russian hackers to find thousands of emails deleted from the private server his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton, used while serving as President Obama's first-term secretary of state. "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing," Trump said. Democrats have speculated that Russian hackers leaked Democratic National Committee emails to help Trump's campaign. Clinton ally Leon Panetta, a former defense secretary and CIA director, said Trump's remarks called his loyalty to the U.S. into question.

The Washington Post CNN

4. Man who tried to assassinate Reagan cleared to leave psychiatric hospital

John Hinckley Jr., who shot and wounded then-President Ronald Reagan and three others in 1981, can leave the psychiatric hospital where he was sent after being acquitted by reason of insanity, a federal judge ruled Wednesday. Hinckley was obsessed with actress Jodie Foster, and tried to assassinate Reagan to impress her. Judge Paul L. Friedman said Hinckley no longer poses a threat. He will be allowed to leave St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, D.C., to live with his 90-year-old mother in Williamsburg, Virginia, where he has been allowed frequent visits.

CBS News

5. Tim Kaine accepts Democratic vice presidential nomination

Democratic delegates formally nominated Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia as the party's candidate for vice president on Wednesday. Kaine said he "humbly" accepted the nomination "for my friend Hillary Clinton." Kaine, in the biggest speech of his political career, introduced himself to a national audience as a "boring" guy devoted to hard work and kindness. He made an appeal to disappointed Bernie Sanders voters, and to anti-Trump Republicans, saying: "If any of you are looking for that party of Lincoln, we've got a home for you right here in the Democratic Party."

The New York Times

6. ISIS suicide bomber kills 44 people in Syria

An Islamic State suicide bomber killed 44 people in an attack on a crowded district in the predominantly Kurdish northern Syria town of Qamishli. Most of the victims reportedly were civilians. There is a station for Kurdish security forces in the area where the bomber, driving a truck laden with explosives, blew himself up. "Terror is all I saw among the residents when I first arrived," said media activist Decile Husen, 23. "I was shocked at the extent of destruction in the homes and shops."

The Associated Press

7. Fed holds interest rates steady but says economic threats are decreasing

Federal Reserve policy makers left interest rates unchanged, as expected, at the conclusion of a two-day meeting on Wednesday. The Fed said, however, that looming economic risks had faded, suggesting the U.S. central bank could be open to resuming slow interest rate hikes from near zero in coming months. The Fed hit the brakes earlier this year as oil prices and stocks plummeted, then put off resuming the hikes after a terrible May jobs report and the U.K's June vote to exit the European Union.


8. Video purportedly shows attackers who killed French priest pledging ISIS allegiance

The Islamic State on Wednesday released a video it said showed the two attackers who killed a French priest pledging allegiance to the Islamist extremist group. Both of the attackers were shot dead by police. Police identified one of the killers as Adel Kermiche, 19. Kermiche allegedly twice tried to travel to Syria to join ISIS. Prosecutors said Thursday that, based on DNA evidence, it was "very probable" that the second attacker was Abdel-Malik Nabil Petit Jean, a 19-year-old Frenchman from eastern France.

BBC News Time

9. WikiLeaks posts hacked Democratic National Committee voicemails

WikiLeaks on Wednesday released 14 minutes of voicemails it says were hacked from the Democratic National Committee. Journalists did not immediately find anything damaging or incriminating in the audio files, but the data dump raised the possibility of more leaks to come. The latest embarrassment for the DNC came on the heels of the release of close to 20,000 hacked DNC emails just before the start of this week's Democratic National Convention. U.S. intelligence agencies believe Russia is behind the hacking.

The Washington Times

10. One death reported in intensifying California wildfire

A central California wildfire intensified in hot weather on Wednesday, spreading to cover about 42 square miles. Fire officials said the fire had killed one person, a private bulldozer operator who was hired to help contain the Soberanes Fire in Monterey County. The bulldozer operator died Tuesday night from injuries he sustained during night-time firefighting efforts. The blaze, which started Friday, had destroyed 34 homes and was still just 10 percent contained as of Wednesday. An even bigger fire in Southern California was 40 percent contained.


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Harold Maass

Harold Maass is a contributing editor at TheWeek.com. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 launch of the U.S. print edition. Harold has worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami Herald, Fox News, and ABC News. For several years, he wrote a daily round-up of financial news for The Week and Yahoo Finance. He lives in North Carolina with his wife and two sons.