President and family begin annual vacation in Hawaii

President Obama arrived in Hawaii on Saturday to kick off his annual winter vacation.

The president, first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia landed in Honolulu shortly before midnight. Their two dogs, Sunny and Bo, joined them aboard Air Force One.

Obama had no public events scheduled while he’s in Hawaii, where he was born. On previous trips, he’s enjoyed regular rounds of golf, local restaurants and family trips to get shave ice, a Hawaiian version of a snow cone. Last year, gridlock in Congress forced Obama to return to Washington the day after Christmas. This year the Obamas are hoping their vacation will go uninterrupted.

The president is scheduled to be in Honolulu through Jan. 5.

FRESNO, Calif.

Police seek teen suspects in school robbery, shooting

Police were searching Saturday for four teenage boys they say shot and injured a teacher who fought back during an attempted robbery at a central California high school.

Steven Guerrero, 30, who teaches athletic training part time at Edison High School in Fresno, was shot in the stomach and leg in a classroom Thursday night, The Fresno Bee reported.

Guerrero was in fair condition and declining interviews at a Fresno hospital on Friday, according to the newspaper. The hospital said Saturday that he was no longer listed as a patient there.

Deputy Police Chief Pat Farmer said the teens were armed with a handgun and a sawed-off shotgun when they confronted Guerrero in the unlocked classroom and demanded a laptop computer. A custodian also in the room managed to escape.

Guerrero allowed the group to take the computer but then fought back after one of the teens struck him in the head with a 25-pound free weight, Farmer said. The teacher knocked the laptop and the handgun away, but one of the teens got to the weapon first and fired six rounds, two of which hit Guerrero.


Zimmerman painting sells for more than $100,000

Bidding has closed on eBay for artwork created by George Zimmerman.

The winning bid was $100,099.99 Saturday for a painting depicting a U.S. flag in shades of blue with the words “God, One Nation, with Liberty and Justice for All.”

The item received 96 bids since Monday on the online auction website. A picture shows Zimmerman holding the artwork.

Zimmerman’s attorney, Jayne Weintraub, told The Associated Press that her client created the artwork himself and posted it for sale.

Weintraub says that, “unfairly, he has not been gainfully employed of late and he’s utilizing his talent to make some money.”

Zimmerman was acquitted in July in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin. Prosecutors recently declined to file domestic violence charges against him for an incident involving his girlfriend.


Vandals torch straw goat symbol of Christmas spirit

Vandals in Sweden have burned down for the 27th time a giant straw goat meant to symbolize Christmas spirit.

The 43-foot high and 3.6-ton heavy straw goat was engulfed in flames early Saturday after unidentified assailants attacked it in the Swedish town of Gavle, 90 miles north of Stockholm.

The straw goat is a centuries-old Scandinavian yule symbol that preceded Santa Claus as the bringer of gifts.

– From news service reports

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