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• Ellen Kalish, a wildlife rehabilitator in Saugerties, N.Y., said an adult male saw-whet owl found by a worker in the branches of this year's 75-foot Rockefeller Center Christmas tree in Manhattan "had a buffet of all-you-can eat mice" and will be released back into the wild.

• Dan Donovan of Niles, Ill., an 81-year-old former Marine, used a shillelagh, an Irish walking stick, to drive off three burglars, giving one a thump on the head, after one of them posed as a utility worker to distract Donovan and his wife and the other two filled a pillowcase with stolen items.

• Bella Utley, an advertising major at Middle Tennessee State in Murfreesboro, said she and her classmates realized that fact-based messaging wasn't working, so they designed an "it's easier than ..." marketing campaign for the campus, stressing that wearing a mask is easier than finding a parking space, and other everyday activities.

• Douglas Stuart, a Scottish writer, won the Booker Prize for fiction for his first published novel, "Shuggie Bain," the story of a boy's turbulent coming of age in hardscrabble 1980s Glasgow, during a live-streamed ceremony in London.

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• Ieronymos, 82, archbishop of the Orthodox Church of Greece, said he is participating personally "in the ordeal" affecting millions around the world just before he was hospitalized with "mild symptoms" of covid-19.

• Johnny Whited, 53, of Trinity, Ala., was charged with murder after he called investigators to say he wanted to confess to a 1995 slaying, providing details that matched evidence and other information collected before the case went cold 25 years ago, police said.

• Tracey Ray, 48, the former city clerk of Center, Mo., accused of taking more than $300,000 of public money, which she used to pay for personal bills and travel and gave to family members, was indicted on fraud and theft charges, prosecutors said.

• Karilyn Primeau, 47, of Smithville, Mo., wife of an inmate at the U.S. Army Disciplinary Barracks in Leavenworth, Kan., faces a bribery charge after being accused of paying a guard to smuggle cellphones into the prison.

• Betsy Price, 71, the Republican mayor of Fort Worth, who is quarantining with her husband after both tested positive for covid-19, called for people to "prioritize the health and safety of our community by wearing a mask and social distancing."


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