OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — A gunman shot and wounded a Canadian soldier standing guard at a war memorial in the country's capital Wednesday, then entered Parliament, where numerous shots rang out, police and witnesses said.
People fled Parliament by scrambling down scaffolding erected for renovations, witnesses said. Others were in lockdown. Police with rifles and body armor stood guard outside and blocked the normally bustling streets leading to Parliament.
Ottawa police Constable Marc Soucy said it was unclear whether there was more than one shooter.
The attack came two days after a recent convert to Islam killed one Canadian soldier and injured another in a hit-and-run before being shot to death by police. The killer had been on the radar of federal investigators, who feared he had jihadist ambitions and seized his passport when he tried to travel to Turkey.
Canada had raised its domestic terror threat level from low to medium Tuesday because of "an increase in general chatter from radical Islamist organizations," said Jean-Christophe de Le Rue, a spokesman for the public safety minister.
On Wednesday, Tony Zobl, 35, said he witnessed the soldier being gunned down from his fourth-floor window directly above the National War Memorial, a tall granite cenotaph, or empty tomb, with bronze sculptures dedicated to those who died in World War I.
"I looked out the window and saw a shooter, a man dressed all in black with a kerchief over his nose and mouth and something over his head as well, holding a rifle and shooting an honor guard in front of the cenotaph point-blank, twice," Zobl told the Canadian Press news agency.
"The honor guard dropped to the ground, and the shooter kind of raised his arms in triumph holding the rifle."
Zobl said the gunman then ran up the street toward Parliament Hill.
The wounded soldier was taken away in an ambulance. His condition was not immediately known.
Cabinet minister Tony Clement tweeted that at least 30 shots were heard inside Parliament, where Conservative and Liberal MPs were holding their weekly caucus meetings.
"I'm safe locked in a office awaiting security," Kyle Seeback, another member of Parliament, tweeted.
The top spokesman for Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Harper was safe and had left Parliament Hill.
Shots were also fired at a shopping mall near Parliament, police said. All three sites — the war memorial, Parliament and the mall — are within less than a mile from each other.
Officials also canceled two events in Toronto honoring Pakistani teenager and Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai, including one in which she was supposed to receive honorary Canadian citizenship. The teenager was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman in 2012 for calling for schooling for girls.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police warned people in downtown Ottawa to stay away from windows and rooftops.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Michael Brown's official autopsy shows the 18-year-old was shot in the hand at close range during a struggle with the Ferguson police officer who fatally shot him, two experts said in a published report Wednesday.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch obtained the St. Louis County medical examiner's autopsy and an accompanying toxicology report that shows Brown had used marijuana.
The newspaper reported that St. Louis medical examiner Dr. Michael Graham and another pathologist not involved in the investigation reviewed the report and said it indicates a wound to Brown's hand came at close range.
Brown and officer Darren Wilson struggled inside Wilson's SUV on Aug. 9 and Brown was shot once in the hand. Brown was killed outside the vehicle.
Graham told the Post-Dispatch that the autopsy report "does support that there was a significant altercation at the car."
Brown family attorney Benjamin Crump told The Associated Press on Wednesday that the autopsy offers no insight into why Wilson killed Brown.
The newspaper posted a copy of the autopsy and toxicology report on its website. Medical examiner's office administrator Suzanne McCune confirmed the posted information was accurate but said her office won't officially release the documents until the investigation is complete. The newspaper did not say where it obtained the documents.
Wilson remains on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation into the shooting that has sparked sometimes violent protests in Ferguson. On Tuesday, Gov. Jay Nixon appointed a special commission to look at how the region can move forward after the concerns raised by the shooting and its aftermath.
Wilson confronted Brown and Dorian Johnson as they walked back to Brown's home from a convenience store. After the shooting, Brown died at the scene. Some witnesses have told authorities and news media that Brown had his hands raised when Wilson approached with his weapon and fired repeatedly.
Wilson's attorney, James P. Towey, did not return messages seeking comment Wednesday.
NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of home loan servicing company Ocwen extended their slump Wednesday after Moody's Investors Service downgraded its credit.
The firm lowered its rating on Ocwen's credit to 'B2' from 'B1' and said the rating could be cut further based on regulatory action against Ocwen or news that hurts its business and reputation. Moody's rating on Ocwen's credit is five notches below investment grade.
Atlanta-based Ocwen Financial Corp. is one of the largest home loan servicing companies in the U.S.
Its shares fell $1.69, or 7.9 percent, to $19.78 in midday trading. The stock sank 18 percent on Tuesday.
On Tuesday the New York State Department of Financial Services said Ocwen inappropriately backdated foreclosure warnings and letters that rejected mortgage loan modifications, making it nearly impossible for struggling borrowers to appeal decisions made by Ocwen. The Financial Services Department said many borrowers did not receive warning letters until long after the deadline for avoiding foreclosure had passed. It said the company may have sent hundreds of thousands of backdated letters.
Ocwen Financial Corp. said software errors in its correspondence system caused the problem. In 2013, Ocwen agreed to reduce struggling borrowers' loan balances by $2 billion as part of a settlement with federal regulators and 49 states over foreclosures abuses.
Moody's said the allegations are serious and could lead to restrictions on Ocwen's business, fines against the company, or other actions that affect the company's credit as well as its franchise position.
The credit rating company also downgraded two related companies, lowering its rating on Altisource Portfolio Solutions SA to 'B2' from 'B1' and the rating on Home Loan Servicing Solutions Ltd. by two notches, from 'B2' from 'Ba3'. Moody's said both companies rely heavily on Ocwen.
HLSS acquires mortgage servicing assets and gets most of its income from loans that Ocwen services. Altisource is a former unit of Ocwen.
EL PASO, Texas (AP) — A convicted felon from Georgia must serve seven years in federal prison for using a gun to abduct a man who was later found in West Texas.
Wano McSwain of Dahlonega (duh-LAH'-nuh-guh), Georgia, was sentenced Tuesday in El Paso. McSwain in August pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm during an interstate kidnapping.
McSwain must forfeit two guns seized after his arrest in Anthony, near El Paso.
A 78-year-old man on Feb. 5 told a gas station clerk in Anthony that he was abducted in Georgia by McSwain and forced to drive to Albuquerque, New Mexico. Anthony police arrested McSwain and confiscated a pistol and a stolen shotgun.
McSwain in 2005 was convicted in Clark County, Nevada, of pandering of a child and sentenced to prison.
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio man detained for nearly half a year in North Korea returned to a very emotional homecoming Wednesday amid tears of joy and hugs from his wife and surprised children.
A plane carrying Jeffrey Fowle landed Wednesday morning at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, near Dayton, where he was reunited with his family.
Moments after Fowle, carrying two bags, stepped off a plane at the base just after 6:30 a.m., his three children and wife ran from a nearby airplane hangar and shared hugs.
Base Col. John Devillier said Fowle had a tearful reunion, and that Fowle was happy and seemed thrilled to be back in the U.S.
"We had a great reunion for an American citizen coming home," he said.
Devillier said Fowle's family hadn't told the children why they were being brought to the base and that it was a surprise for them to see their father walk off the plane.
"The reaction from his children was priceless," Devillier said. "They hadn't seen their dad in some time. The expectation would be that they would get teary eyed and they did, and I did too. It's great to welcome him home."
The news came about six months after he was taken into custody after leaving a Bible at a nightclub. Christian evangelism is considered a crime in North Korea.
He had been awaiting trial — the only one of three Americans held by Pyongyang who had not been convicted of charges.
The two others were each sentenced to years in North Korean prisons after court trials that lasted no more than 90 minutes. The three Americans entered North Korea separately.
Fowle was flown out of North Korea on a U.S. military jet that was spotted at Pyongyang's international airport Tuesday by two Associated Press journalists. There was no immediate explanation for the release of Fowle, who was whisked to the U.S. territory of Guam before heading back to his wife and three children in Ohio.
State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said Tuesday that Fowle was seen by doctors and appeared to be in good medical health. She declined to give more details about his release except to thank the government of Sweden, which has an embassy in Pyongyang, for its "tireless efforts."
Harf would not say whether any American officials had intervened directly with the North Koreans.
Relations between Washington and Pyongyang, never warm, are at a particularly low point, and the U.S. has sought unsuccessfully for months to send a high-level representative to North Korea to negotiate acquittals for all three men.
In Berlin, Secretary of State John Kerry said "there was no quid pro quo" for the release of Fowle.
"We are very concerned about the remaining American citizens who are in North Korea, and we have great hopes that North Korea will see the benefit of releasing them also as soon as possible," Kerry told reporters.
"We're in constant touch with their families, we're working on their release, we've talked to the Chinese and others, and we have a high focus on it," he said.
The United States has no diplomatic relations with North Korea and strongly warns American citizens against traveling to the country.
A report released by the Korean Central News Agency on Wednesday said Kim Jong Un, the leader of North Korea, took "a special measure" by releasing Fowle, who was referred to as a "U.S. criminal." The report said Un took "into consideration the repeated requests of U.S. President Barack Obama."
Fowle, from West Carrollton, Ohio, arrived there on April 29 and was arrested in May for leaving a Bible at the nightclub. Christian evangelism is considered a crime in North Korea.
The city where Fowle worked as a streets department employee terminated his employment last month.
"We're delighted to hear the news and look forward to him returning to the community and his family," David Hicks, Moraine's city manager, said Tuesday.
The Dayton Daily News reported last month that the city said Fowle's termination included $70,000 in severance pay and the ability to be reinstated.
Associated Press writers Dan Sewell in Cincinnati and Lara Jakes in Washington, Associated Press journalists Eric Talmadge and Maye-E Wong in Pyongyang, North Korea, and Deb Riechmann and Matthew Pennington in Washington contributed to this report.