Website host pulls 'Active Shooter' game

A website host has removed online sites promoting a school-shooting video game that was protested by parents of slain children.

Acid Software said Wednesday that its two websites for the “Active Shooter” game were shut down Tuesday night by Bluehost, the Burlington, Mass., company that hosted them. Acid says it’s working to get the sites back up.

Bluehost was urged to remove the sites in an online petition organized by Sandy Hook Promise, an anti-gun violence group formed by parents whose children were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in December 2012.

The game allows players to participate in simulated school shootings. It recently was removed from two online platforms after complaints by parents of children killed in the Newtown and Parkland, Fla., school shootings.

— Associated Press

personal property
Court rules no privacy for 1-2-3-4 password

A man serving 18 years in prison in South Carolina for burglary was rightfully convicted in part because he left his cellphone at the crime scene and a detective guessed his passcode as 1-2-3-4 instead of getting a warrant, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.

Lawyers for Lamar Brown argued that detectives in Charleston violated Brown’s right to privacy by searching his phone without a warrant.

After storing the cellphone in an evidence locker for six days in December 2011, the detective guessed the easy passcode and traced it to Brown.

The justices ruled 4 to 1 that Brown abandoned his phone at the crime scene and made no effort to find it.

But Chief Justice Don Beatty said that Brown probably did not consider his phone abandoned, that his passcode showed he wanted to protect the contents and that police should have gotten a warrant for a search.

— Associated Press

FAA: Inspectors allowed unsafe flights

Government inspectors allowed unsafe aircraft to operate in U.S. commercial flight operations, a whistleblower investigation has concluded.

The Federal Aviation Administration’s review confirmed the allegations, according to the Office of Special Counsel, the agency charged with investigating complaints from whistleblowers.

“Safety inspectors at the Federal Aviation Administration have improperly approved aircraft for commercial operations without first reviewing critical safety information that in some cases would have prohibited their operation,” the special counsel said in a statement Wednesday.

The planes, mostly with 30 or fewer seats, were being used by smaller carriers that mainly operate charters. In one example, some charter operators were allowed to fly with exit doors that weren’t easily accessible during an emergency, according to the special counsel. Last year the FAA created a task force to evaluate records for over 11,000 aircraft, and said it “identified several corrective actions” and expects to complete them by Sept. 30.

— Bloomberg News

Also in Business

Members of the United Auto Workers have elected Gary Jones as the union’s new president. Jones was picked in a roll-call vote Wednesday at the union’s convention in Detroit. He’ll take over a 400,000-member union that’s facing a federal investigation in a corruption scandal involving a worker training center run jointly by Fiat Chrysler and the union. President Dennis Williams is retiring. Jones, an accountant, was director of the UAW’s regional office in St. Louis.

Volkswagen was fined $1.18 billion over diesel emissions cheating in what amounts to one of the highest fines imposed by German authorities against a company, public prosecutors said Wednesday. The German fine follows a U.S. plea deal in January 2017 when Volkswagen agreed to pay $4.3 billion to resolve criminal and civil penalties for installing illegal software in diesel engines to cheat strict U.S. anti-pollution tests. The prosecutor's office in Braunschweig imposed the fine against Volkswagen for organizational deficiencies that failed to prevent "impermissible software functions" from being installed in 10.7 million cars between 2007 and 2015. The fine did not address civil claims or claims by vehicle owners, the prosecutor's office said.

— From news reports

Coming today

8:30 a.m.: Commerce Department releases retail sales data for May.

10 a.m.: Commerce Department releases business inventories for April.

10 a.m.: Freddie Mac releases weekly mortgage rates.