Vanessa Romo Vanessa Romo is a reporter for NPR's News Desk.
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Vanessa Romo

If the current federal government shutdown, which began Dec. 22, continues past Jan. 1, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo will close, effective Jan. 2. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP hide caption

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Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen announced a host of "extraordinary protective measures" designed to improve conditions for children and adults held in U.S. Customs and Border Protection custody. Susan Walsh/AP hide caption

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Susan Walsh/AP

Swimming champion Missy Franklin announced her retirement from the sport in an emotional letter to ESPN.com on Wednesday. She is 23. Simon Hofmann/Getty Images for Laureus hide caption

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Simon Hofmann/Getty Images for Laureus

Migrants, one carrying a child, who plan to turn themselves over to U.S. border agents, walk up the embankment after climbing over a U.S. border wall from Playas de Tijuana, Mexico, last week. On Tuesday, members of the Hispanic Caucus called for improved medical facilities and trained personnel at ports of entry. Moises Castillo/AP hide caption

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Moises Castillo/AP

The German government has agreed to make a one-time payment to Kindertransport survivors, commemorated by a statue in Berlin, Germany. Markus Schreiber/AP hide caption

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Markus Schreiber/AP

CBS announced on Monday it will not pay out a controversial $120 million severance package to former CEO Leslie Moonves. The company said it had ample reason to fire the disgraced executive for cause. Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images for Showtime hide caption

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Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images for Showtime

Actress Eliza Dushku reached a $9.5 million settlement with CBS last year after she alleged she was written off Bull because she had made a sexual harassment complaint against the show's lead. Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images hide caption

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Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Prabhu Ramamoorthy assaulted a sleeping woman on an overnight flight from Las Vegas to Detroit on Jan. 3. The 35-year-old man was sentenced to nine years in prison on Friday. Seth Wenig/AP hide caption

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Seth Wenig/AP

A man was freed after spending two days crammed into a narrow grease vent in San Lorenzo, Calif. Officials say he's not being charged with a crime. Alameda County Sheriff's Office hide caption

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Alameda County Sheriff's Office

An Australian flag flies outside Bandyup Women's Prison where a woman was forced to give birth alone in a locked prison cell despite pleading for help for more than an hour, according to a newly released report. Paul Kane/Getty Images hide caption

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Paul Kane/Getty Images

Jobs with CBP have been notoriously difficult to fill, in large part because of the polygraph exam applicants are required to undergo. John Moore/Getty Images hide caption

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John Moore/Getty Images

On Tuesday, jurors sentenced James Alex Fields Jr. to 419 years plus life and roughly half a million dollars in fines. A judge will hold a separate hearing on March 29. Eze Amos/AP hide caption

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Eze Amos/AP

Charlottesville Jury Recommends 419 Years Plus Life For Neo-Nazi Who Killed Protester

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