A 911 dispatcher in Washington state called on her own mother to rescue a stranded boater in the Columbia River, knowing her mother could kayak to the area faster than sending the sheriff’s office patrol boat. The sheriff’s office says a 45-year-old kayaker was hanging onto a log piling Sunday after her kayak sank in swift current near a jetty. The Daily News reports Wahkiakum County dispatcher Raedyn Grasseth notified the sheriff’s office and then realized her mother, Cindy Faubion, and other members of Grasseth’s family lived nearby and could get there quicker. They paddled to the piling in a kayak and skiff and rescued the kayaker. The kayaker was cold and shaken but didn’t need medical attention. Continue Reading
A former Pennsylvania jail inmate says he didn’t sneak a cellphone into the lockup in his prosthetic leg, though he acknowledged having it for a year as he pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct. Instead, 28-year-old Christopher Greer, of Uniontown, tells a judge the phone was in his cargo shorts when he reported in 2011 to serve a sentence for driving on a suspended license. Greer says he kept the phone because inmates at the Fayette County lockup 40 miles south of Pittsburgh must pay $4 per call. Greer pleaded guilty Tuesday, but the warden doesn’t believe Greer smuggled the phone in either his pocket or his leg, as county detectives charged. Brian Miller says both would have been searched too thoroughly for that. Continue Reading
ATLANTA (AP) — The first of more than 30 defendants expected to surrender today in Atlanta’s school cheating scandal are turning themselves in to authorities.
Fulton County Jail records show that Tameka Goodson was in custody early Tuesday after being booked into jail on charges of racketeering and making false statements and writings. Goodson was an instructional coach at Kennedy Middle School. Her attorney, Raymond Lail, told WAGA-TV that Goodson is “absolutely not guilty of these charges.” News media outlets reported that a second suspect, Usher/Collier Heights Elementary School test coordinator Donald Bullock, turned himself in around 6 a.m.
Thirty-five Atlanta educators, including former Superintendent Beverly Hall, are named in a 65-count indictment that alleges a broad conspiracy involving cheating on standardized tests. Continue Reading
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa Senate committee has approved tax breaks that reward green energy, charitable food donations and preserving historical sites.
The Senate Ways and Means Committee passed multiple tax break bills Wednesday. These now move before the full Senate. One bill would provide $5 million in state dollars to fund income tax breaks for individuals, farmers and businesses who want to install a fueling station for electric or natural gas-powered vehicles. The Senate approved a similar bill with bipartisan support two years ago but it failed in the House. Continue Reading
FREEPORT, Ill. (AP) — Lottery officials say a ticket sold at a Freeport gas station won the most recent $50 million Powerball jackpot.
The ticket was the sole winner of Saturday’s drawing. A spokeswoman for the Illinois Lottery tells The (Freeport) Journal-Standard that the jackpot marks only the second time a multimillion dollar winning Powerball ticket has been sold in the state. Powerball’s played in 41 other states as well as Washington, D.C.
The winner, who picked the numbers at random on a $2 ticket, hasn’t come forward. Continue Reading
An Iowa teenager is suing his school district and several administrators because he says they didn’t do enough to protect him from bullying and an assault that left him permanently disabled. The teen and his grandmother filed the lawsuit Friday in federal court in Des Moines contending he was subjected to persistent bullying by other students at his Bedford high school. They say it culminated in last October’s attack, in which two students pelted him in the head with footballs, leaving him with severe brain injuries that required surgery to remove a blood clot and with permanent disabilities. The boy is no longer in the hospital. Bedford Superintendent Joe Drake said in a statement he hasn’t seen the lawsuit, but that bullying isn’t tolerated and all reported incidents are investigated. Continue Reading
A car plowed through a restaurant’s patio during the lunch hour Monday, injuring 10 people before it came to rest with its engine revving and its hood inside a shattered plate glass window, authorities said. Firefighters had to extricate four people from beneath the vehicle, including a boy, after the 12:30 p.m. crash at the Egg & I restaurant on Sahara Avenue, several blocks west of the Las Vegas Strip, witnesses said. The injured were taken to two hospitals, and some were hurt seriously, said Las Vegas fire spokesman Tim Szymanski. Suziliene McDonald said she was sitting with two sisters in the restaurant when she saw the vehicle speed toward the window. “I screamed, `A car’s coming!’ Continue Reading
A clerical error allowed the man suspected of killing Colorado’s prisons chief to be released from custody about four years early. Court administrators acknowledged the error in a statement Monday. They said that in 2008, Evan Spencer Ebel pleaded guilty to assaulting a prison guard. He was supposed to spend four additional years in prison. A court clerk failed to note that the sentence was supposed to be served after the one Ebel was already serving. Continue Reading
A clerical error allowed the man suspected of killing Colorado’s prisons chief to be released from custody about four years early, officials said Monday. In 2008, Evan Spencer Ebel pleaded guilty in rural Fremont County to assaulting a prison guard. In a plea deal, Ebel was to be sentenced to up to four additional years in prison, to be served after he completed the eight-year sentence that put him behind bars in 2005, according to a statement from the 11th Judicial District. However, the judge did not say the sentence was meant to be “consecutive,” or in addition to, Ebel’s current one. So the court clerk recorded it as one to be served “concurrently,” or at the same time. Continue Reading
The killings of two Texas prosecutors have raised fresh questions about the safety of those who confront evil for a living. In fact, the murders of prosecutors have been relatively rare, with motives varying widely. Over the last century, 14 prosecutors have been killed, according to news reports and statistics kept by the National District Attorneys Association. At least eight of them were targeted in the line of duty. At least several were slain in incidents unrelated to their jobs, apparently random acts of violence. Continue Reading