Thursday's news in under 2 minutes.

Usher and his son



1. The five-year-old son of Usher is reportedly in intensive care at a Georgia hospital after he got stuck while trying to retrieve a toy from a drain at the bottom of a pool . The boy – whose name is Usher Raymond V – was playing in the pool with his aunt when the incident occurred and was rushed to hopsital where he was met by his mum and dad. Usher Raymond V’s mother has since tweeted: “Cabin fever.. But I’m so happy to say that my son is doing much better. Talking & asking for food. Thank you for ur well wishes & prayers.”

Last year, Usher’s 11-year-old step son was killed in a jet skiing accident.

2. It’s been suggested that a research chemical called NBOM-e is being sold to teenagers as the drug LSD. Last night’s ABC 7:30 program reveled the drug could be responsible for the deaths of three teenagers in Australia. Seventeen-year-old Henry Kwan jumped to his death after ingesting the drug two months ago. Fifteen-year-old Nick Mitchell also died after taking the drug last year, but at the time his death was thought to be caused by LSD. NBOM-e is legal in some Australian states and can be bought for as little as $2.

Drug educator Paul Dillion told the 7:30 program that young people needed to take police warnings seriously. “Police put out warnings about things and then nothing bad happens and young people don’t believe us – we lose our credibility,” he said. “I certainly don’t want to lose mine, but I really do believe that something really is happening at the moment, with the very young – we’re not talking about 18, 19-years-olds here, we’re going younger and younger.”

3. A murder trial in the Victorian Supreme Court must be heard again after a juror fell asleep during the hearing. The Defence Barrister at the trial reportedly said to Justice Phillip Priest: “It’s my submission, sir, that regrettably we need a new jury panel. This man didn’t hear a thing that your honour said, I would say.” The case involved a man called Steve Constantinou, who is accused of murdering Johanna Martin – who was working as a sex worker when she died in October 2011.


4. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has opened the door to Julia Gillard joining him on the election campaign. On last night’s 7.30 Report, Rudd said of the former Prime Minister Gillard, “Julia would be welcome to participate in the campaign in any way she chose fit.”

5. A woman in China has been reunited with her son, after two nurses convinced her he was born with health defects and would soon die. The nurses asked 31-year-old Dong Wan to sign her son over to the hospital, before selling him to human traffickers for $5000. But when Mrs Dong became suspicious and got the police involved – who found her son.

6. The Christian Democratic Party in Australia have been criticised in the lead up to the federal election, after posting ads on their Facebook page over the past few months that were homophobic.

One ad, uploaded at the end of last month, reads: “Same-sex couples earn 29 per cent more money than female-male couples … Mum and dad taxpayers are the most oppressed Australians in our economy.” The party is led by Reverend Fred Nile.

7. Ariel Castro‘s Cleveland home has been demolished. The 52-year-old convicted criminal used to house to keep three women for more than 11 years after he kidnapped them off the streets. Michelle Knight, one of the women who was kidnapped by Castro, was watching the demolition. She told the media: “Why it’s important for me to be here today is because nobody was there for me when I was missing,” she said. “I want the people out there to know, including the mothers, that they can have strength and they can have hope and their child will come back.”

Last week Castro was sentenced to life plus 1000 years in jail.