Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the Newsdesk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, DC.

Chappell's work for NPR includes being the lead writer for online coverage of several Olympic Games, from London in 2012 and Rio in 2016 to Pyeongchang in 2018 – stints that also included posting numerous videos and photos to NPR's Instagram and other branded accounts. He has also previously been NPR.org's homepage editor.

Chappell established the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR's website; his assignments also include being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road. Chappell has coordinated special digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, in addition to editing the rundown of All Things Considered. He also frequently contributes to other NPR blogs, such as The Salt.

At NPR, Chappell has trained both digital and radio staff to tell compelling stories, promoting more collaboration between departments and desks.

Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that performed one of NPR's largest website redesigns. One year later, NPR.org won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

Prior to joining NPR, Chappell was part of the Assignment Desk at CNN International, working with reporters in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. Chappell also edited and produced stories for CNN.com's features division, before moving on to edit video and produce stories for Sports Illustrated's website.

Early in his career, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants, and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

At first glance, the starting gate at Emerald Downs racetrack looks relatively normal. But then the gates open and the race begins, and instead of thoroughbreds a mass of people bursts forth, running as fast as they can — while wearing oversized T-Rex costumes.

"The T-Rexes stand at the ready — and T-Rexes away!" track announcer Tom Harris yells, as prehistoric — and hilarious — chaos breaks out on the track.

At the wire, a dino named Regular Unleaded took the victory, holding off Rex Girlfriend by a tail.

Updated at 12 p.m. ET

The U.S. Women's National Team is celebrating their World Cup championship with a ticker tape parade in New York City. Throngs of fans packed Manhattan's famed "Canyon of Heroes" to greet the squad led by Megan Rapinoe.

"This group is so resilient, is so tough, has such a sense of humor — is just so bad-ass," Rapinoe said as she praised her teammates.

France plans to put an "ecotax" on nearly all airline flights starting in 2020, French Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne said Tuesday. The new tax could bring in some $200 million annually that would support modes of travel that pollute less — such as trains.

"With the eco-contribution, air transport will play its part in financing the daily transport of all our citizens," Borne said via Twitter. She added, "It is a response to the ecological urgency and sense of injustice expressed by the French."

A bloom of toxic algae has forced Mississippi to close 25 beaches along its Gulf Coast. State environmental officials say people can still visit the sandy beaches — but they should avoid any contact with the water.

The blue-green algae "can cause rashes, stomach cramps, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting," the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality says. And it warns that exposure can affect pets.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents mine millions of driver's license photos for possible facial recognition matches — and some of those efforts target undocumented immigrants who have legally obtained driver's licenses, according to researchers at Georgetown University Law Center, which obtained documents related to the searches.

Updated at 4:13 p.m. ET

A military jury has sentenced Navy SEAL Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher to a demotion and reduction in pay for posing with a dead prisoner's body on the battlefield. A jury convicted Gallagher of that crime on Tuesday but acquitted him of charges that he murdered the captive ISIS fighter.

Torrential rains have created dangerous conditions in southwestern Japan, prompting evacuation orders for more than 1.1 million people in the Kyushu region, according to state broadcaster NHK News. Officials are warning of the risk of flooding and mudslides.

Roughly half of Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan's main islands, is under a warning or advisory for risks of landslides and heavy rain, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. The flood warning covers a slightly smaller area.

Updated at 3 p.m. ET

An airstrike on a migrant detention center in the Tajoura suburb of Libya's capital killed at least 44 people early Wednesday morning, according to the United Nations. More than 100 people were injured.

The strike hit a hangar within the Tajoura Detention Center, obliterating what had been a shelter that was housing roughly 120 people. The death toll has grown as local health authorities report casualties.

A military jury in San Diego has acquitted Navy SEAL Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher of all but one count of war crimes in a case that revolved around the killing of a 17-year-old ISIS prisoner who had been wounded and died in U.S. custody.

The jury convicted Gallagher of posing with the body of the dead prisoner.

The jury began deliberating on Monday, nearly two weeks after another SEAL, Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Corey Scott, shocked the courtroom by claiming that he, not Gallagher, killed the captive.

Updated at 4:36 p.m. ET

Nike has recalled a shoe featuring the Betsy Ross flag over concerns that the design glorifies slavery and racism. The red, white and blue sneaker had been set to hit the U.S. market to commemorate the July Fourth holiday.

"Nike has chosen not to release the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July, as it featured an old version of the American flag," the company told NPR on Tuesday. Nike did not immediately respond to questions about the thinking behind the original design.

Updated at 1:26 p.m. ET

Iran has exceeded the limit under the 2015 nuclear deal for its stockpile of enriched uranium, the country's first breach of the international agreement following the Trump administration's decision to pull out a year ago.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Monday that the country now has more than 300 kilograms (661 pounds) of low-enriched uranium, surpassing the deal's 300-kilogram threshold.

Updated at 1 p.m. ET

Protesters charged Hong Kong's Legislative Council building Monday, shattering glass doors and tearing down a metal wall that is part of its facade. After initially stopping short of entering the facility, hundreds of protesters flooded into the lawmakers' chamber.

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Former President Jimmy Carter says President Trump would not have won the 2016 election without help from Russia, commenting shortly after Trump made a smiling appearance alongside Rus

Abortion providers have filed a lawsuit seeking to block Georgia's controversial new law that bans abortions when heartbeat activity is detectable, typically about six weeks into a pregnancy — before many women know they're pregnant.

"This is a constitutional challenge" to the law, the plaintiffs say in the lawsuit, which was filed in a U.S. district court in northern Georgia Friday. The suit was backed by the local chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood Southeast.

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Nearly a year after a long stretch of the Morandi bridge collapsed in Genoa, Italy, a demolition team blew up the structure's remaining pylons Friday morning in a spectacular sight tha

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, known for his hard-line policies on law and order, began his trip to Japan for the G-20 summit on an embarrassing note after a crewman in an advance party was accused of carrying cocaine in his luggage.

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

Editor's note: This story contains images that some readers may find disturbing.

The desperate and tragic plight of a father and daughter who drowned while trying to cross the border from Mexico into the U.S. has become a new flashpoint in the border crisis, after a photographer captured a haunting image that shows the pair lying facedown, washed onto the banks of the Rio Grande.

Eldorado Resorts is buying Caesars Entertainment for $17.3 billion, in a cash-and-stock deal that the companies say will create the largest gambling company in the U.S.

To acquire the venerable Caesars name and properties, Eldorado will part with $7.2 billion in cash and around 77 million stock shares. It will also take on Caesars' outstanding debt. Its shareholders will wind up with 51% of the combined company.

Updated at 1:45 p.m. ET

Google is committing $1 billion to try to provide more affordable housing in the San Francisco Bay Area, where big tech firms have been blamed for putting home prices out of reach for anyone without a rich stock-option plan. Google says the money should result in 20,000 new homes added to the local market, over 10 years.

Facebook is branching into cryptocurrency, unveiling a new blockchain-based currency called Libra that could challenge bitcoin. Libra will be controlled by a nonprofit group in which Facebook will share responsibilities with companies ranging from Mastercard and PayPal to Uber and eBay.

The currency, which is still in the testing phase, is expected to launch in 2020. Facebook says Libra will have very low fees and that people using its apps will make a number of payments simply by sending a text message.

French anti-corruption police have arrested former UEFA President Michel Platini in a case related to "Qatargate" — the ongoing investigations into how Qatar was awarded the 2022 World Cup. Platini is also a former vice president of FIFA, soccer's international governing body.

Updated at 1:28 p.m. ET

Sotheby's has accepted a merger offer from entrepreneur Patrick Drahi, who will purchase the auction house for $3.7 billion. The deal puts Sotheby's, which was founded in 1744, on a path to becoming a private company again.

Newly released from prison, Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong immediately called for Chief Executive Carrie Lam to resign from office. His remarks came as thousands of Hong Kong residents demanded that the government permanently shelve a controversial extradition bill.

Wong, 22, had been serving a two-month prison term for contempt of court, related to the 2014 Umbrella Movement street demonstrations. But he was released after serving one month.

Updated at 5:30 p.m. ET

The Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo "does not meet the criteria for a Public Health Emergency of International Concern," the World Health Organization said Friday. The agency said that while the outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo constitutes a health emergency for that country and the region, the risk of it spreading beyond that region is low.

California prison inmates who possess small amounts of marijuana are not guilty of a felony crime, according to an appeals court, which reasoned that because it's legal to have small amounts of pot in the state, the same is true inside its prisons. But the justices also said it's still illegal to smoke or ingest cannabis in prison.

The ruling from a panel of the 3rd District Court of Appeals in Sacramento overturns the convictions of five inmates who had been found guilty of possessing marijuana — convictions that added more prison time to their sentences.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has rejected the U.S. accusations, tweeting that the Trump administration "immediately jumped to make allegations against Iran [without] a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence."

In an earlier tweet, Zarif hinted at a conspiracy, noting that the tankers, one owned by a Japanese firm, occurred as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was meeting with Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. "Suspicious doesn't begin to describe what likely transpired," he wrote.

Chris Froome, the four-time Tour de France winner, was in intensive care on Thursday a day after suffering multiple fractures in a high-speed crash in France. Froome's racing team says he won't be able to compete in this year's Tour de France, which begins in July.

The 34-year-old British cyclist underwent surgery Wednesday and the procedure was a success, Team INEOS announced.

Updated at 4:55 p.m. ET

Thirty-six Memphis Police Department officers and sheriff's deputies were injured during a large protest Wednesday night, the police department said Thursday. The violence erupted after officers of the U.S. Marshals Service shot and killed Brandon Webber, 20.

Updated at 9:45 a.m. ET

A 5-year-old boy who was diagnosed with Ebola died Wednesday in Uganda, health officials say, and the boy's younger brother and grandmother are also sick. They are the first confirmed cases of Ebola to spread beyond the large outbreak in the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Updated at 1:15 p.m. ET

Craig Stephen Hicks has pleaded guilty to killing three Muslim college students in Chapel Hill, N.C., in 2015, a shocking crime that was variously described as a hate crime, a dispute over parking or some combination of the two.

Durham County District Attorney Satana Deberry read out three counts of first-degree murder against Hicks, 50, in court on Wednesday. Hicks responded "guilty" to each crime, as member station WUNC's Jason deBruyn reports.

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