While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Sept 21


Maryland woman kills three people and herself in warehouse gun rampage

A woman armed with a handgun opened fire at a Maryland distribution centre for the Rite Aid drugstore chain, killing three people and wounding three others before taking her own life, the Harford County sheriff said.

The shooting unfolded shortly after the suspect, a temporary employee there, reported for work around 9am EDT (9pm Singapore time) at the warehouse in Perryman, Maryland, about 55km north-east of Baltimore, Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler said at a news conference.

The sheriff’s office identified the assailant only as a 26-year-old woman whose last known address was in Baltimore County.

The sheriff said investigators have not yet determined a motive, but a law enforcement source told Reuters the shooting was believed to have been sparked by a work-related grievance.


Passenger felt stinging in ears 'like needles' after crew forgot to pressurise plane

Authorities say a flight crew's failure to flip a switch caused a plane to depressurise over Mumbai, leaving passengers bleeding into oxygen masks and nearly losing consciousness.

Satish Nair told The Washington Post that he boarded the Jet Airways flight before sunrise on Thursday, bound from Mumbai to Jaipur on a business trip.

He took his seat in business class, and a couple minutes after takeoff felt a stinging in his ears - "like needles," he said. "I thought it was maybe due to a common cold," Nair said.


After three years, hundreds of gruesome deaths, Britain's 'cat killer' case is solved

The "Croydon Cat Killer" massacred a reported 400 pets over three years. Victims were often eviscerated and many were found with tails - and sometimes heads - removed.

Sometimes, the furry companions were left at the doorsteps of their own homes. Or a school yard. The bodies were being moved. People feared the killer might escalate to killing people.

Now, London police have closed the case, claiming that the cat killings "are likely to be the result of predation or scavenging by wildlife on cats killed in vehicle collisions".


Man Booker Prize shortlist reflects dark times

The shortlist for this year's Man Booker Prize, one of the world's most prestigious literary awards, includes for the first time a novel told in verse.

The book, The Long Take, by poet Robin Robertson, mixes verse, prose and photographs to follow the story of a World War II veteran across the United States in the golden era of Hollywood.

Kwame Anthony Appiah, chairman of the judges, said the six-book shortlist was most notable for the bleakness of its subjects, among them ecological destruction, prison life, institutional racism and slavery.


Too much Star Wars? Disney CEO says will slow down releases

Disney plans to slow down the release schedule for its blockbuster Star Wars franchise, chief executive officer Bob Iger has said, acknowledging that it was a mistake to shuttle a new film into theatres every year.

Iger's comments to The Hollywood Reporter in an interview published on Thursday come on the back of the disappointing box office take earlier this year of Solo: A Star Wars Story of US$400 million (S$540 million) worldwide.

While that result would be stellar for most films, it's mediocre at best for a Star Wars film, leading many industry observers to speculate about franchise fatigue.