Waukesha Verdict, PGA Probe, and the Benefits of Fake Smiles Everything you need to know for today in five minutes.

Good morning. It's Thursday, Oct. 27, and we're covering a verdict in a deadly Christmas parade massacre, a professional golf probe, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at [email protected].


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Wisconsin Hit-and-Run Verdict

A Wisconsin jury yesterday convicted 40-year-old Darrell Brooks Jr. of killing six people and injuring at least 60 others in November after his SUV slammed into a Christmas parade in the Milwaukee suburb of Waukesha.


Brooks was found guilty of all 76 charges in the deadly hit-and-run, including six counts of intentional homicide and 61 counts of recklessly endangering safety. Each homicide count carries a mandatory life sentence, while each of the counts for reckless endangerment carries a maximum sentence of more than 17 years in prison. 


Brooks, who pleaded not guilty in February, had represented himself at trial after firing his public defenders. He also initially pleaded guilty by insanity and later withdrew the plea. The trial was marked by a series of clashes between Brooks and the judge, including Brooks arguing with the judge and taking his shirt off after being removed from the courtroom.

Russian Runs Nuke Drills

Russian forces carried out nuclear drills yesterday, launching ballistic and cruise missiles from land and sea across the country to the Kura test site in Russia's far eastern Kamchatka province. The tests were reportedly part of scheduled drills but come as Moscow has increasingly referenced the potential use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine. 


On the ground, both sides continue to prepare for a battle over the southern city of Kherson. The fighting is anticipated to be some of the heaviest since the start of the war—Russia has reportedly evacuated civilians and withdrawn high-ranking officers, but is said to have defensive positions for remaining troops. See updates here (along with a map of the front).


Separately, officials recovered the remains of Joshua Jones, an American killed fighting alongside Ukrainian forces. His body is expected to be returned to his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee. 


In related news, thousands of documents recovered amid a Russian retreat last month revealed an inside look at the Kremlin's war effort.

PGA Tour Probe Widens

A US Justice Department probe into the PGA Tour's alleged anticompetitive behavior has expanded to several major institutions in the sport. Reports claim the inquiry now involves the organizers of the prestigious US Open and Masters tournaments, among others.


The investigations come amid the debut of the Saudi Arabian-funded LIV Golf league, a rival series signing lucrative deals with dozens of high-profile players, including stars Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson (see league 101). In its related California lawsuit, LIV alleges the PGA Tour broke antitrust law by threatening players not to join the new series or risk losing a spot even at non-Tour high-stakes events.


The California case is scheduled to go to trial in 2024. In the meantime, the next major tournament is the Masters in April, and its organizer, Augusta National, has not yet indicated whether it would ban LIV-affiliated players from participating. 


Read about the Saudi league's aggressive inaugural summer here.

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Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with The Ascent

> Jackpot for last night's Powerball lottery tops $700M, the fifth largest jackpot in US history; odds of winning are one in nearly 300 million (More)


> Adidas to continue selling Kanye West's "Yeezy" line of products but without his name attached; Adidas ended its partnership with West over a series of antisemitic remarks and controversial social media posts (More)


> Rihanna to release lead single to "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" soundtrack Friday; her first new solo song in six years (More)

From our partners: Five money moves to make in 2022. Experts at The Ascent say to consider these five moves to grow your wealth in 2022. And they've got a track record, because they've been helping people like you since 1993. Learn more today.

Science & Technology

> Study pinpoints brain cells responsible for initiating fevers in response to infection or inflammation; cells that line the brain's blood vessels release a hormone-like molecule that tells the hypothalamus to raise the body's temperature (More)


> Researchers demonstrate LiDAR sensor—the core component of autonomous vehicle vision systems—with a 360-degree field of vision and 3D-imaging capabilities (More)


> Archaeologists find the most complete Jurassic period lizard fossil to date; discovery fills in key gaps in the early evolutionary development of ancient reptiles (More)

Business & Markets

> Big tech companies lead US stock markets lower (S&P 500 -0.7%, Dow 0.0%, Nasdaq -2.0%) to snap three-session winning streak (More)


> Meta (Facebook) shares down near 20% in after-hours trading after company announces second consecutive quarter of revenue declines, expects another drop in fourth quarter revenues (More)


> Shares of Mobileye—self-driving subsidiary of Intel—close up 38% in first-day trading as a public company (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> At least 15 people killed and dozens injured in Shiraz, Iran, after gunmen strike a major Shiite holy site (More) | Iranian security forces reportedly open fire at crowds gathered at Mahsa Amini's grave to mark 40 days since her death in police custody (More) | The US imposes new sanctions on Iranian officials over crackdown on anti-government protests (More


> Three men convicted of all charges related to supporting a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in 2020; Joe Morrison, his father-in-law Pete Musico, and Paul Bellar await sentencing in December (More


> Mark Meadows, former White House chief of staff, ordered to testify in Fulton County, Georgia, 2020 election interference probe (More) | Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker (R) is accused of pressuring a second woman to have an abortion (More)



The Blood House

Truly*Adventurous | Danny Cherry Jr. The untold true story of a house in Atlanta suddenly dripping in blood one night in 1987, terrifying the family inside and opening up a mystery that persists to this day. (Read)

Chicago's Phantom Menance

Block Club Chicago | Linze Rice. The tale of a faceless phantom-like "thing" that wandered restlessly on the north side of Chicago in the fall of 1895, frightening residents, police, and horses. (Read)



In partnership with Revela


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Can faking a smile influence your mood?


How life expectancy has changed since 1950.


Iowa woman claims her late father was a serial killer.


"The Simpsons: Treehouse of Terror" gets an anime makeover.


Looking at some of the most unusual US state governments.


Florida teen crowned archnemesis of Burmese pythons.


USPS unveils its new line of forever stamps.


A collection of unsolved paranormal mysteries.


Clickbait: Jorts the cat commits a Twitter faux paw.


Historybook: Ivan the Great dies (1505); Philadelphia is founded (1682); President Teddy Roosevelt born (1858); New York City subway opens (1904); American poet and novelist Sylvia Plath born (1932).


"The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people."

- President Teddy Roosevelt

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