Wednesday - March 27, 2019
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Regional News Headlines

Raccoon stranded in Florida waters is rescued - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
BRADENTON, Fla. — A seafaring Florida raccoon found itself in a predicament Wednesday.The plucky little land mammal became stranded on a channel marker in Sarasota waters, according to the Sarasota Police Department.The department’s marine patrol unit received a request for help from Mote Marine Lab workers who noticed the stranded raccoon around 12:15 p.m. while aiding an injured turtle.The marine patrol coordinated a rescue effort with Mote Marine, the [...]

Man who took Alabama town for $1.9M sentenced to 5 years - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
MONTGOMERY — The founder of business incubator who pleaded guilty to scamming residents of an Alabama city was sentenced Tuesday to more than five years in prison and ordered to return $1.9 million to investors.Kyle Sandler, 43, opened the Round House in 2014 as a launching pad for new tech companies in the east Alabama town of Opelika, raising about $1.9 million from more than 70 investors. He pleaded guilty last year to fraud.U.S. Attorney Louis Franklin said Sandler [...]

High winds damage roofs, power lines in Alabama - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
CLANTON — Some buildings were damaged in central Alabama as storms moved across the state.Chilton County Emergency Management Director Derrick Wright told news outlets the damage in downtown Clanton on Monday afternoon appears to be from straight-line winds, not a tornado.No serious injuries were reported when the storms moved across the state.The roof collapsed on a barber shop and some traffic lights were out after the storm. Some trees were also down. There [...]

Alabama woman pleads guilty to attempted murder of toddlers - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
SNEAD — An Alabama woman has pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of her two children, then ages 1 and 2, and aggravated child abuse.Al.com reported Monday that 25-year-old Melissa Ann Miller, of Snead, was initially arrested in 2016 after the children were hospitalized that April for about a month with severe injuries, including cigar burns.Blount County District Attorney Pamela Casey says Miller blamed the injuries on a battery-powered four-wheeler.The [...]

Alabama woman dies in fire at her home - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
ATTALLA — An 82-year-old Alabama woman has died in a fire at her home.Attalla Fire Chief Robert Dillard said the fire was reported shortly after 4 a.m. Monday.Dillard said Mae Pearson lived with her daughter. The chief said the daughter was unable to reach her mother, but did escape the fire.Dillard said the fire appeared to have started near Pearson's bedroom.The woman's body was found near a back door.Dillard said it took more than an hour for [...]

2 Georgia men arrested, accused of robberies across 2 states - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
VICKSBURG, Miss. — Two Georgia men have been arrested for robbing a string of fast-food restaurants in Alabama and Mississippi, and may be suspects in a killing in Georgia.Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace says 21-year-old Sharae Threadgill of Stone Mountain and 18-year-old Jaylen Benton Ellerslie, both in Georgia, were arrested near Vicksburg late Monday following a chase. Pace says they're wanted for a killing in Georgia.They're also accused of robbing fast-food [...]

Groups: EPA dragged heels on oil dispersant rules - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
NEW ORLEANS — Environmental groups and women from Alaska and Louisiana say the Environmental Protection Agency has dragged its heels on issuing rules for oil spill dispersants, and they're ready to sue to demand them.They say dispersants such as Corexit, used during the Exxon Valdez and BP oil spills, were more toxic to people and the environment than oil alone but, nearly four years after taking public comments about such rules, the agency hasn't acted."We depend on [...]

Transgender teen says school took him off prom king ballot - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
GAINESVILLE, Ga. — A transgender student says his Georgia high school removed him from this year's prom king ballot.The Gainesville Times quotes Johnson High School senior Dex Frier as saying he was nominated by the student body as one of six candidates for prom king, but was later informed by school officials that he could only be on the prom queen ballot.Hall County Schools Superintendent Will Schofield says the district has never removed students from prom and he [...]

Former wrestler tells students of losing daughter to drunken driver - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
KILLEN — Brooks students lined up to hug former professional wrestler Bill DeMott, many with tears in their eyes, after his emotional, gut-wrenching discussion about how his 20-year-old daughter died after her car was struck head-on by a drunken driver in 2015.Keri Anne DeMott, a student at the University of Central Florida, was on her way home in the early morning hours of Oct. 10, 2015, when a man with multiple drunken driving convictions drove into her lane and crashed into [...]

Alabama firm joins project to build new supersonic aircraft - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
BIRMINGHAM — An Alabama firm is partnering with a Colorado company to build a manufacturing facility that would produce supersonic aircraft.Hoar Program Management of Birmingham will help locate, plan, design and build the facility for Boom Supersonic, which is planning a supersonic commercial airliner for transoceanic routes, the news site Al.com reported.Colorado-based Boom Supersonic was founded in 2014, and has announced pre-orders of the Overture from airlines [...]

Alabama lawmaker apologizes for outburst in House chamber - Tue, 26 Mar 2019
MONTGOMERY — A state lawmaker apologized for an outburst on the floor of the Alabama House of Representatives in which she repeatedly shouted at the House speaker.Rep. Juandalynn Givan issued a statement over the weekend to "humbly express my apologies to my colleagues." The Birmingham Democrat said she also wanted to challenge fellow lawmakers "to avoid actions that encourage division and oppression.""In light of a recent incident that I felt directly challenged my [...]

High court won't hear 1996 Alabama capital murder case - Mon, 25 Mar 2019
MONTGOMERY — The U.S. Supreme Court said Monday that it will not hear the case of an Alabama death row inmate who says his lawyer had an undisclosed conflict of interest that caused evidence of childhood abuse to not be presented in court.The court said it will not review the case of Nicholas Acklin, 47. He was convicted in the 1996 shooting deaths of four people in Huntsville.Appellate attorneys wrote that during the 1998 trial, Acklin's trial attorney wanted to show [...]