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AROUND THE NATION

Twister hits arena, rips up downtown

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- A tornado that ripped the roof off a sports arena in Billings, Mont., Sunday evening also tore apart a casino, bar and laundromat in the city's downtown area.

The tornado struck Sunday at about 5 p.m. as a big storm system with golf ball-sized hail passed through the area, Trooper Toman Baukema of the Montana Highway Patrol said.

After running through downtown's Main Street, the twister moved toward the 10,000-seat Rimrock Auto Arena in a nearby industrial area, where it snapped trees and telephone poles. B There were several employees inside the arena when it struck, but there were no reports of injuries, Baukema said.

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Celia upgraded to hurricane status

MIAMI (AP) -- Celia was upgraded to hurricane status Sunday as it howled toward open seas, away from Mexico's Pacific coast.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said the storm -- now the first hurricane of the season -- was expected to gradually strengthen.

Celia was centered about 365 miles south of Acapulco Sunday afternoon,moving westward at about 7 mph.

That course would take it toward the open Pacific and forecasters said it posed no immediate threat to land.

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L.A. airport evacuated after false threats

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Parts of a terminal at Los Angeles International Airport were briefly evacuated when a man made threats that turned out to be false.

LAX spokesman Albert Rodriguez said that a man walked into the Tom Bradley International Terminal shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday and made threatening statements.

Airport police took the man into custody, conducted a security sweep and found nothing.

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