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Published August 17. 2018 10:02PM

Stinky 'corpse flower' in full bloom in California

SAN MARINO, Calif. — Visitors were flocking to the Huntington Library in Southern California on Friday to get a whiff of a so-called corpse flower, known for the rotten stench it releases when it blooms.

The flower, nicknamed "Stink," began blooming unexpectedly on Thursday night, Huntington spokeswoman Lisa Blackburn said.

"We thought we had a few more days to go. But it was ready and it was pretty spectacular," she said.

Corpse flowers typically take 15 years to reach a mature blooming size, and blooms usually only last 24 hours.

The foul odor the plants emit attracts insects for pollination. The plants don't emit the foul odor until they bloom.

"Stink" is the sixth corpse flower to bloom at the institution in suburban San Marino. The last was on Aug. 23, 2014.

The plant is one of the three corpse flowers expected to bloom within the next week. The two other flowers, nicknamed "Stunk" and "Stank," should bloom in the next few days, Blackburn said.

The Huntington is seeing more visitors than normal because of the flowers, she said.

"The great thing about these flowers is they're so unusual-looking and have this reputation for smelling really bad, it gets all kinds of people really interested in botanical science," she said. "It's just a charismatic plant."

Former US security leaders blast Trump for yanking clearance

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former U.S. security officials issued scathing rebukes to President Donald Trump on Thursday, admonishing him for yanking former CIA chief John Brennan’s security clearance in what they cast as an act of political vengeance.

Trump said he’d had to do “something” about the “rigged” federal probe of Russian election interference.

Trump’s admission that he acted out of frustration about the Russia probe underscored his willingness to use his executive power to fight back against an investigation he sees as a threat to his presidency. Legal experts said the dispute may add to the evidence being reviewed by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Colorado fetal homicide law at issue in killings

FREDERICK, Colo. — The Latest on the arrest of a Colorado man in the disappearance of his family (all times local):

11:20 a.m.

Accusations that a man killed his pregnant wife and two young daughters is prompting questions about Colorado's lack of a law allowing homicide charges in the violent deaths of fetuses.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Colorado is among 12 states without such a law.

Prosecutors are expected to charge Chris Watts on Monday. Watts was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of three counts of murder.

Violent crimes have prompted debate before in Colorado, including in 2015 after a woman cut open a pregnant woman's belly and removed her unborn baby.

Proposals to change the law have been stymied by debate about when a fetus can legally be considered a human being.

Colorado does allow a homicide charge if a fetus was alive outside the mother's body and then killed.

12:05 a.m.

Shanann Watts painted a rosy portrait of her family on Facebook, calling her husband and the father of her two young daughters her "rock" and writing that he was "the best dad us girls could ask for."

But that idyllic image was shattered Wednesday when her husband, 33-year-old Christopher Watts, was arrested on suspicion of killing his family.

Shanann Watts, who was pregnant, and the couple's 3-year-old and 4-year-old daughters were found dead in northern Colorado on Thursday.

No motive has been released, leaving family and friends searching for answers.

A June 2015 bankruptcy filing captures a picture of a family dealing with financial strain.

Christopher Watts, who is being held without bail, is expected to be formally charged by Monday.

— The Associated Press

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