Humpback whale alert, monk seal attacks, Northwest sizzles: News from around our 50 states


Clanton: Two Chilton County deputies and two Clanton Police Department officers wore body cameras that offered a 360-degree view of the environment surrounding the officer during a weekslong field test. Called the Nexx360, the officer’s collar holds four wide-angle cameras. Instead of capturing footage of a narrow field of view in front of the officer, this system gives an all-around view. “This has the potential for being a game-changer,” said Sheriff John Shearon. “There are times when we don’t get good footage of an encounter. The officer may be moving to protect themselves or others; the other person may be moving. An officer doesn’t need to think about where they need to be to get the best body camera footage. This solves that problem.” The cameras serve as a “dispassionate observer,” said Terry Luck, a longtime defense attorney whose practice is in Montgomery. The technology also allows dispatchers – and supervisors – to get real-time images of what’s happening. That’s a huge advantage in rural counties, where help in the form of backup can be 20 minutes or more away, Shearon said.


Juneau: Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she recently tested positive for the coronavirus. In a statement on social media, Murkowski said she recently tested positive after experiencing flulike symptoms. The statement did not specify the timing of the test. Her campaign posted photos of events that Murkowski participated in Friday and Saturday in Fairbanks. “I will be following guidance and advice from doctors and will be quarantining at home in Alaska while continuing my work remotely,” Murkowski’s statement said. Karina Borger, a spokesperson in Murkowski’s Senate office, said by email that Murkowski is “vaccinated and boosted.” Borger said she had nothing more to share beyond the social media post.


Phoenix: Beginning this month, students whose jobs or income were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic can receive free tuition, monthly stipends and employment help in a range of workforce programs from manufacturing to health care at Maricopa County’s 10 community colleges. Phoenix is using $7 million of its federal pandemic relief funds to finance the “Route to Relief” program, which will run through December 2024. Eligible students can get up to $5,000 for tuition, fees and books. Training-related expenses, job search expenses and career services in programs such as semiconductor, health care, business, manufacturing and information technology also are covered. Students also will get monthly stipends during their studies of up to $1,500 for other expenses such as child care and transportation.


Fort Smith: Power has been restored across the Arkansas River Valley after storms last week caused outages in Roland, Oklahoma and Paris. But a heat wave will continue through the first part of this week with triple-digit temperatures in Fort Smith. There is a 50% chance for rain Thursday with a high of 98 degrees, the National Weather Service reported. An excessive heat warning was issued for 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday in Fort Smith and Sebastian County. High fire danger continues during an ongoing drought.


Forest Falls: A man died and a woman was injured when the pair tumbled down a waterfall in the San Bernardino Mountains, authorities said. Rescue crews responding Sunday afternoon found the woman performing CPR on the man at Big Falls near the community of Forest Falls, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said. The man, a 43-year-old resident of Hemet, died at the scene, the department said. The 43-year-old woman from Riverside was airlifted to a hospital, officials said. Their names were not immediately available. Officials said the pair fell from the middle falls to the lower falls at the popular destination along a hiking trail about 80 miles east of Los Angeles.


Denver: A federal judge has temporarily blocked the city of Superior from enforcing parts of a new gun control ordinance, including a ban on the sale and possession of assault weapons, after it was challenged by gun rights groups. U.S. District Court Judge Raymond Moore issued a temporary restraining order on Friday, noting the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, the National Association for Gun Rights and a Superior resident, Charles Bradley Walker, had established a likelihood to prove their case in challenging two sections of the ordinance. Moore scheduled an Aug. 4 hearing to determine whether to continue to keep Superior from enforcing those sections. The other section requires people who had assault weapons before the law took effect on July 1 to get a permit to continue to possess them but largely only on their own property. The law defines assault weapons as a number of different semi-automatic weapons. Moore’s ruling included several references to last month’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down a New York law that required people to show why they needed a concealed weapons permit. He noted that the court found that Americans have the right to bear commonly used arms in public, subject to reasonable and well-defined restrictions, and that governments must identify “an American tradition” to justify any limits on their use.


Norwich: The City Council gave the green light to the Norwich Community Development Corporation to apply for a $500,000 Brownfield Remediation Grant from the state’s Community Investment Fund to help remediate and redevelop the Reid and Hughes department store, a vacant building on Main Street. Mayor Peter Nystrom said the funding is needed to take care of asbestos, lead pipes, and other areas that aren’t up to modern code compliance. The plan for the building is to create 17 apartments and a first-floor retail space. Heritage Housing, Inc. is the developer interested in the Reid and Hughes building. It already owns the Wauregan Building across the street.


Dover: Senate Democrats voted in a special session to seek to remove Delaware’s state auditor from office, an action criticized as meaningless “political theater” by the Democratic House speaker. Senators voted 13-7 for a resolution to hold a joint session of the Legislature regarding the removal of Auditor Kathy McGuiness, a Democrat. Senate Democrats contend that McGuiness should be removed from office for betraying the public trust. McGuiness, who is responsible as auditor for rooting out government fraud, waste and abuse, was convicted this month on misdemeanor charges of conflict of interest, official misconduct and structuring a contract with a consulting firm to avoid compliance with state procurement rules. She was acquitted on felony charges of theft and witness intimidation. The case marked the first time in Delaware history that a sitting statewide elected official had been convicted on criminal charges. The Senate resolution must also be approved by the House, but Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf said he has no intention of calling his chamber into special session. “This isn’t taking decisive action: it’s political theater,” Schwartzkopf, a longtime political ally of McGuiness, said in a statement issued by Democratic House leadership.

District of Columbia

Washington: Police are investigating after a 7-year-old boy was hit by a car driven by an 11-year-old boy in Southeast D.C. on Monday night, WUSA-TV reported. According to the Metropolitan Police Department, the unidentified boy was hit in a playground parking lot, located on the 3500 block of Stanton Road, just after 6:30 p.m. Police believe the juvenile driver lost control of the car and wasn't able to hit the brake before running into the child. The car also hit a curb. When first responders arrived, they found the boy conscious and breathing. The 11-year-old driver of a 2020 Kia Optima ran away from the scene after the crash, but was located by police Tuesday. The family of the injured boy said he is expected to be OK, but he is recovering from a leg injury in the hospital.


A car sits in the Atlantic Ocean after crashing through the empty toll booth at the International Speedway Boulevard beach approach in Daytona Beach, Fla.
A car sits in the Atlantic Ocean after crashing through the empty toll booth at the International Speedway Boulevard beach approach in Daytona Beach, Fla.

Daytona Beach: Four people, including a 5-year-old boy, were injured when a car crashed through an unoccupied toll booth and ended up in the Atlantic Ocean, officials said. The crash happened just before 5 p.m. Sunday along Daytona Beach, where vehicles are allowed on the sand. The driver of the car, Christian Rivera Rosado, 28, of Springfield, Massachusetts, apparently had a seizure and lost control of his Nissan Altima, according to a report from Volusia County Beach Safety Ocean Rescue. The car smashed through the empty toll booth at the International Speedway Boulevard beach approach in Daytona Beach and ended up in the water, Volusia County Beach Safety officials told news outlets. The child, identified as David Alamos of Nashville, Tennessee, was taken to a hospital in Daytona Beach and then airlifted to Arnold Palmer Hospital in Orlando, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reported. The child he was released from Halifax Health Medical Center later Sunday. Rosado was also taken to the hospital as a trauma alert, the report said. Rosado, who said he didn’t remember the incident, was cited for careless driving, the report stated. The crash remains under investigation.


Atlanta: A judge rejected an appeal by a group of voters and affirmed the Georgia secretary of state’s decision that Republican U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is eligible to run for reelection. The five voters from Greene’s district sought to have her removed from the ballot, saying she played a significant role in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol that disrupted Congress’ certification of Joe Biden’s presidential victory. That was a violation of a rarely invoked provision in the 14th Amendment against insurrection or rebellion, they argued.


Honolulu: A swimmer at a beach in Waikiki was injured last weekend after encountering an endangered Hawaiian monk seal with a young pup. Hawaii Marine Animal Response, a nonprofit conservation organization that helps monitor protected species, said their workers witnessed a swimmer come into contact with the mother monk seal known as Rocky on Sunday morning. The Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources said in a statement the victim is a 60-year-old elementary school teacher from California. The woman received lacerations to her face, arm and back, the agency said. State officials said they would not recommend charges or fines for the woman and are not naming her because she requested anonymity. The Hawaii Marine Animal Response said in a statement the seal gave birth to a pup about two weeks ago on Kaimana Beach in Waikiki, the same area where the swimmer was injured. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Hawaii Marine Animal Response have been watching the pair and warning people to stay away. It is against the law to touch, harass, injure or kill monk seals, of which there are less than 1,600 remaining in the wild. People are told to stay at least 150 feet away from a mother seal and pup, though that recommendation is not a law.


Boise: Tom Arkoosh, an attorney from Boise, said he’s running for Idaho attorney general as the Democratic nominee. Arkoosh announced his candidacy amid family and friends at the Statehouse. He’s replacing Steve Scanlin, who withdrew from the race last week and was a placeholder for the Democrats. Arkoosh will face former U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador in the November general election. Labrador defeated five-term incumbent Attorney General Lawrence Wasden in the May Republican primary.


Chicago: A man who died after being stabbed on a commuter train early Monday apparently threatened or tried to rob the person who wounded him, authorities said. The stabbing occurred at about 3 a.m. on a Chicago Transit Authority Red Line train on the city’s South Side, police said. Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan said video footage reviewed by investigators suggested the man was with a group who threatened or tried to rob someone else on the train. Video showed the man holding a gun before the individual targeted by the group used a knife to stab him, Deenihan said during a news conference. The man suffered wounds to his chest and later was pronounced dead at a hospital. Deenihan said investigators haven’t identified anyone else involved yet. No arrests have been made.


Indianapolis: Thousands of people arguing the abortion issue surrounded the Statehouse and filled its corridors Monday as lawmakers began to consider a Republican proposal to ban nearly all abortions in the state. Vice President Kamala Harris denounced the effort during a meeting with Democratic state legislators. Harris said the abortion ban proposal reflected a health care crisis in the country. Despite the bill’s abortion ban language, anti-abortion activists lined up before a legislative committee to argue the bill wasn’t strict enough and lacked enforcement teeth. Indiana is one of the first Republican-run state Legislatures to debate tighter abortion laws following the U.S. Supreme Court decision last month overturning Roe v. Wade. Indiana’s Republican Senate leaders proposed a bill last week that would prohibit abortions from the time an egg is implanted in a woman’s uterus with limited exceptions – in cases of rape, incest and to protect the life of the mother. Republican Senate leaders said the bill would not add new criminal penalties against doctors involved with abortions, but they would face possibly having their medical licenses revoked for breaking the law.


Des Moines: As three more families sue Tyson Foods over COVID-19 deaths among workers at its Iowa plants, the meatpacking giant is petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court for protection. Tyson’s attorneys filed the petition Friday, asking the country’s highest court to hear their case and rule that a March 2020 executive order by President Donald Trump shielded the company from legal liability, Bloomberg Law reported. Trump’s order instructed the secretary of agriculture to take “all appropriate action” to keep the country’s meat and chicken processing plants open as COVID-19 spread, though it did not prohibit them from temporarily closing their plants. In their petition, according to Bloomberg, Tyson’s attorneys wrote the company followed “the federal government’s instructions to help avert an impending national food shortage.” They added that Tyson executives “will not be so eager to willingly aid the federal government in a crisis” if the company is subject to lawsuits.


Topeka: State Attorney General Derek Schmidt is trying to get ahead of arguments that an anti-abortion measure up for a statewide vote next week would hinder medical care for patients with life-threatening pregnancies. Schmidt, a Republican running for governor who supports the measure, argued in a legal opinion issued Friday that treating miscarriages, removing dead fetuses and ending ectopic pregnancies do not fall under Kansas’ legal definition of abortion. The proposal on the ballot Aug. 2 would amend the Kansas Constitution to allow the Legislature to further restrict or ban abortion. It’s the first referendum on abortion policy by a state since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last month.


Frankfort: Funding is available to help boost the Kentucky tourism industry, which saw a decline in visitors because of the coronavirus pandemic, officials said. The state will allocate $75 million over the next several weeks to help eligible tourism organizations that apply and show the impact of the virus, Gov. Andy Beshear’s office said. The funding comes from the American Rescue Plan Act and was allocated by the General Assembly earlier this year. It will be distributed in four ways. Officials said $25 million will go to local tourism commissions to market their communities, $25 million will be used to attract conventions and meetings, $15 million will go toward statewide marketing and $10 million will be available for multicounty collaborations.


Lafayette: Mayor-President Josh Guillory said he has checked himself into a rehabilitation facility for treatment of alcohol addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder. Guillory said in a news release he will be at an in-patient facility for 21 days. A statement from the city said Guillory will remain in authority over Lafayette Parish and city government. Through arrangements with the facility, Guillory will have access to a computer and internet service and will be able to review and sign contracts, ordinances and other documents. Guillory’s biography on the city’s website said he enlisted in the Louisiana Army National Guard in 2001 and led a platoon in Iraq in 2005.


Newry: A decision by state regulators could make it difficult for the owners of a potentially rich lithium deposit in western Maine to extract the metal. The owners of the Newry property asked the Maine Department of Environmental Protection to review the possibility of quarrying at the site. However, regulators decided earlier this month the site would be viewed as a metallic mineral mine and not a quarry operation, said Maine mining coordinator Michael Clark on Monday. Maine’s mineral mining laws are among the strictest in the country. The Freeman family, which owns the land, did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment. New sources of lithium are in demand in the U.S. because the metal is crucial to the development of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries used in electric and hybrid cars.


Annapolis: Democratic U.S. Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger has tested positive for the coronoavirus, his office said Monday. Ruppersberger, who represents Maryland’s 2nd District, tested positive on Sunday night. The congressman’s symptoms are mild and he is working from home while isolating, his office said. He is fully vaccinated and has had a booster shot. Ruppersberger, 76, is serving his 10th term in Congress. This is the second time this year that he has tested positive for the coronavirus. He also had a positive test in January and reported mild symptoms at the time.


Plymouth: After a whale crashed into a fishing boat and others were seen off the South Shore coast in the past week, the state is warning boaters to use caution as a group of young humpbacks feeds in Plymouth Harbor. The state’s environmental agencies have warned all boaters, kayakers, paddleboarders and others on the water to watch out for three juvenile humpback whales that have been feeding near Plymouth for at least a week. The young whales’ behavior is “very unpredictable,” the state said, and they are feeding on schools of fish in shallow waters. A whale on Sunday struck a fishing boat off the coast of Plymouth after breaching with several boats nearby. The whale hit one of the boats and caused the bow to dip down into the water. Two people on the boat braced themselves as the boat tipped forward and back, a video showed. A paddleboarder had a close encounter with a whale off Manomet last week, and amateur wildlife photographer Suzanne O’Shea managed to photograph a breaching whale off the coast of Plymouth on July 19. The whales feeding and breaching in the area have brought residents and tourists in the hopes of catching a glimpse. Most of the whales have been humpback, which can measure up to 55 feet and weigh up to 40 tons, according to the Whale and Dolphin Conservation, a nonprofit group dedicated to the conservation of whales. It is illegal to harass marine mammals under the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act. Harassment includes any act of pursuit, torment or annoyance that can injure or disrupt the feeding behavior of the animal. The National Marine Fisheries Service recommends that boaters stay at least 100 feet away from whales and take caution given the unpredictable behavior of whales and the potential safety hazards involved.


Ann Arbor: Dozens of University of Michigan medical students walked out of a weekend ceremony to protest a speaker who publicly opposes abortion rights. Dr. Kristin Collier, an assistant professor of medicine, was the keynote speaker Sunday at an annual event where new medical students are formally welcomed and given a white lab coat. A video of some students walking out was posted to social media and has received more than 11 million views. Collier didn’t refer to abortion in her remarks, but she has shared her opinions on social media and in interviews. A petition signed by 340 medical students, including some of the new ones, had urged the university to drop Collier as a speaker. Spokeswoman Mary Masson said the university “does not revoke an invitation to a speaker based on their personal beliefs.” Dr. Joseph Kolars, a senior associate dean, said Collier was nominated to speak by members of a medical school student honor society. He told the audience that she is an “enormously popular teacher and physician.”


Minneapolis: Mekhi Speed, 18, a cousin of Amir Locke, was sentenced to more than 16 years for his role in a January murder that prompted police to execute a no-knock warrant on the apartment where Locke was killed by a SWAT team officer. Speed pleaded guilty in May to aiding and abetting second-degree unintentional murder while committing a felony – namely aggravated robbery – in connection with the Jan. 10 killing of 38-year-old Otis Elder. Speed, who was 17 when Elder was shot, told the court during his plea hearing that he had a handgun when he and others tried to rob Elder of drugs in St. Paul, and there was a struggle and a shot was fired. Speed said he had no memory of pulling the trigger and didn’t know if his accomplice was armed. As St. Paul police were investigating Elder’s murder, they identified Speed as a suspect and obtained search warrants for Minneapolis apartments associated with him. Locke, Speed’s cousin, was not a target of the investigation and was not named in the warrants, but he was in one of the apartments as a Minneapolis SWAT team entered the unit without knocking on Feb. 2. Video showed Locke, 22, who was Black, was shot seconds after police entered the apartment before 7 a.m. He was on a sofa wrapped in a comforter, and video showed he was holding a gun in the moments before he was shot. Minnesota prosecutors declined to file charges the against Officer Mark Hanneman, saying his use of deadly force was justified.


Michele Harris, the event coordinator for the Eli - Pride of the Yazoo River Festival, sits on a wooden sculpture of Eli on Plum Street in Satartia, Miss.. The festival that starts July 30 celebrates the fictitious giant catfish Eli, who is the subject of a children's book written by Daniel Brown.
Michele Harris, the event coordinator for the Eli - Pride of the Yazoo River Festival, sits on a wooden sculpture of Eli on Plum Street in Satartia, Miss.. The festival that starts July 30 celebrates the fictitious giant catfish Eli, who is the subject of a children's book written by Daniel Brown.

Satartia: With a population of 64, the village of Satartia in Yazoo County is Mississippi’s smallest town, but it will soon hold a celebration of something unusually large – a fictional catfish named Eli that lives in the nearby Yazoo River. The Eli – Pride of the Yazoo River Festival on July 30 will be an evening of music, food, fireworks and might be one of the only festivals around where you can rent a catfish. “It’s going to be epic,” said Michele Harris, president and event coordinator of the non-profit Moving Satartia Forward. “It’s going to be so much fun.” Eli isn’t a real catfish. He’s the focus of an award-winning children’s book; Eli – Pride of the Yazoo River. He lives in the river under a bridge, which is a stone’s throw from the village. In the book, a boy and girl set out to do what no one has done – catch the legendary fish. Instead, they develop a friendship with Eli and become his protectors. Eli is now a part of the town’s identity. There’s even a 3,500-pound wooden sculpture of the fish in downtown Satartia created by artist Alexander Brown.


St. Louis: St. Louis has joined a growing list of Democrat-led cities seeking to help women gain abortion access, even in red states that have largely banned the procedure. Not long after Democratic Mayor Tishaura Jones signed a measure providing $1 million for travel to abortion clinics in other states, Republican Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt sued to stop what he called a “blatantly illegal move to spend Missourians’ hard-earned tax dollars on out-of-state abortions.” The give-and-take is emblematic of city versus state fight playing out since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. The St. Louis law called for using federal COVID-19 relief money for a “Reproductive Equity Fund.” The funding is part of a larger health care package that also offers postpartum support, lactation help, doula assistance and money for COVID-19 testing and vaccine incentives. Jones said during a news conference before signing the bill that she expected a lawsuit from Schmitt, who is seeking the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in the Aug. 2 primary, and who has filed dozens of lawsuits ranging from efforts to halt mask mandates in schools to a suit against China over the coronavirus.


West Glacier: A helicopter search crew looking for two missing Montana climbers in Glacier National Park spotted their bodies Monday, park officials said in a statement. The men, both 67, were reported overdue Sunday from their planned climb of Dusty Star Mountain in the park’s center. They set out for the climb on Thursday and planned to hike out on Friday. Park rangers found their vehicle at a trailhead Sunday and search crews first took to the air later that day, park officials said. Authorities were making a plan to recover the men’s bodies and their belongings, the park statement said. Their identities were not immediately disclosed.


Lincoln: Gov. Pete Ricketts remains noncommittal about calling a special legislative session to address abortion, despite many Republican lawmakers pushing to outlaw the procedure. Abortion opponents don’t appear to have the 33-vote super majority needed to overcome a filibuster waged by abortion-rights supporters. Abortion remains legal up to 20 weeks of pregnancy in Nebraska. Those seeking an abortion must receive counseling and wait 24 hours before getting an abortion. People under 19 must have parental consent to undergo an abortion.


Reno: Thirteen Nevada Republicans announced a new coalition to endorse Democratic Attorney General Aaron Ford in his re-election bid against their party’s nominee, Sigal Chattah, a conservative who bested a more moderate Republican primary contender. The announcement of “Republicans for Ford,” first reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal, signaled a major shift in party support as the group is headlined by a former rival of Ford’s – former state Senate Majority Leader Michael Roberson, along with former GOP Chairwoman Amy Tarkanian. Chattah won the June Republican primary by 11 percentage points over Tisha Black, a more moderate candidate who had the backing of Nevada’s Republican establishment. A Las Vegas-based lawyer, she is one of a few conservative GOP candidates in Nevada who won their primary races against more moderate opponents. Chattah sued Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak over pandemic restrictions on behalf of a church and has often painted Black as a Democratic sympathizer throughout the primary.

New Hampshire

Concord: The state sued several pharmacy chains Tuesday, becoming the latest government entity seeking to hold them accountable for fueling the nation’s opioid epidemic. The lawsuit filed by Attorney General John Formella called CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens and their subsidiaries “the last link in the opioid supply chain and the critical gatekeeper between dangerous opioid narcotics in the public.” It accused the companies of flouting their duty to protect public health and safety by failing to stop suspicious prescriptions and diverted drugs. Opioids – including prescription drugs and illegal ones such as heroin and illicitly produced fentanyl – have been linked to more than 500,000 deaths in the U.S. since 2000, and the number of cases reached a record high in 2020.

New Jersey

Bernards: Capt. Robert Terry and his wife Estelle were posthumously awarded the Tuskegee Airmen Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony Thursday at the couple’s former home across from the original Somerset Hills Airfield off Lord Stirling Road. The gold medals were commissioned by President George W. Bush in 2001. “This is outstanding,” said Qaaim Saalik, son of Robert and Estelle Terry, accompanied by his daughters Malika Ra and Ramdasha Bikceem, cousin David Booker and close family friend Kumar Best. “I am very proud of them. I know my parents would look down on this occasion with great, great joy.” Brooks Betz, researcher for the Mr. Local History Project, campaigned for the couple’s honors. Over two years, he prepared a detailed story about the couple’s experiences with the Airmen. Robert Terry served as a Tuskegee Airmen flight instructor and pilot from 1943 to 1945. He helped train 992 pilots, 350 of whom were deployed in the war and served with distinction. A licensed pilot, Estelle Terry might have been the first Black woman pilot in New Jersey, Betz said. She also served among the 14,000-member ground support personnel as a mail clerk and packing parachutes.

New Mexico

Albuquerque: Mayor Tim Keller said the city’s most visible unsanctioned homeless encampment will close next month. Keller said the exact date for Coronado Park’s closing hasn’t been decided. City officials said an estimated 120 people camp nightly at the park and occupants will be told about other housing options. They said increasingly dangerous conditions such as narcotics trafficking and usage combined with prolonged damage to the park’s irrigation and vegetation created safety concerns and were the leading factors in the decision to close the park.

New York

New York City: A preacher known for his close friendship with Mayor Eric Adams was robbed of more than $1 million worth of jewelry Sunday by armed bandits who crashed his Brooklyn church service, just as he was sermonizing about keeping faith in the face of grave adversity, police said. Bishop Lamor Miller-Whitehead, who embraces his flashy lifestyle and can often be seen driving around the Big Apple in a Rolls Royce, was delivering a sermon at his Leaders of Tomorrow International Ministries when police said three robbers walked in. They showed guns and demanded property from Miller-Whitehead and his wife, Asia K. DosReis-Whitehead, police said. The service was also being livestreamed online. In the video, which appears to have been removed from the church’s social media channels, Miller-Whitehead is heard asking his flock, “How many of you have lost your faith because you saw somebody else die?” moments before the robbers entered the church. He’s then seen dropping to his hands and knees and repeatedly saying, “all right, all right,” before a man holding a gun and wearing a black sweatshirt enters the frame. The man, who was also wearing a black mask, is then seen approaching Miller-Whitehead, who was hiding behind a gold-colored lectern, and stuffing the bishop’s jewelry into his pockets. Another man, dressed in similar garb, is then seen heading toward Miller-Whitehead, lingering near him for a few minutes and then running off. Miller-Whitehead said in a video posted to Instagram that the robbers ripped his collar off to grab his chain and held a gun to his infant daughter’s face while stealing his wife’s jewelry. Police said the robbers fled in a white Mercedes that was last seen on Avenue D near the church, in Brooklyn’s Canarsie neighborhood. Neither Miller-Whitehead, 44, nor DosReis-Whitehead, 38, were physically injured, police said. They daughter was also unharmed.

North Carolina

Charlotte: A construction worker at Charlotte Douglas International Airport was electrocuted, according to a California-based company for whom he worked. The Charlotte Observer reported Rosendin Electric, a company based in San Jose, California, filed a report Monday morning confirming Sunday’s death at the airport. John Mallow, a spokesman for the state Department of Labor, said the death was caused by electrocution. The worker’s identity has not been released and the labor department is investigating the incident, Mallow said. It’s not immediately known what project the worker was involved with when he died, or what time it happened. The airport began several construction projects in 2015. The west side of a $608 million terminal lobby expansion recently opened to passengers, but some parts of the lobby, such as ticketing booths and additional lighting, are still being installed. There also are other ongoing projects across the airport complex.

North Dakota

Bismarck: Republican U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer said the U.S. Environment Protection Agency awarded $280,000 to the state Department of Environmental Quality to implement a program to provide drinking water assistance to underserved, small and disadvantaged communities in the Tri-County Water District.


Milford Township: A medical helicopter responding to the scene of a fatal accident crashed early Tuesday when it hit power lines, but no one on board the aircraft was seriously injured, authorities said. Three crew members were in the CareFlight helicopter on the way to an accident involving two pickup trucks that occurred about 4:15 a.m. in Milford Township, according to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office. The aircraft was approaching the scene when it crashed into the power lines and went down. According to a statement issued by CareFlight, no patients were in the aircraft, which was being operated by Air Methods, and the crew members were able to safely exit the helicopter. The cause of the crash will be investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration. Butler County Chief Deputy Anthony Dwyer told WXIX-TV that one crew member suffered “an unknown injury” and was taken to a hospital. The other two crew members were treated at the scene for minor injuries. Authorities said one person was killed in the vehicle accident and three other people were injured. The cause of the accident remains under investigation.


Norman: A couple has been charged in the death of a woman whose body was found last year wrapped in plastic in the basement of a home. Margarita Sandoval, 19, had been missing for three years when police found her body in May 2021 in a box hidden underneath some stairs in a home in Norman. After a 14-month investigation, Normal police charged Sandoval’s brother, 35-year-old Octavio Sanchez, and her sister-in-law, 27-year-old Desiree Sanchez, each with murder and unlawful removal of a dead body. Earlier this month, the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office ruled Sandoval’s death a homicide. Investigators said Sandoval had moved in with the couple in their Norman home in January 2018. Several months later, other family members began looking for Sandoval after not hearing from her. Police said Sandoval, who had limited cognitive abilities, had called authorities to report that the couple had been abusive to her. Police alleged the Sanchez couple had continued to collect Sandoval’s disability payments up until her body was discovered.


Portland: Temperatures soared to 102 degrees Fahrenheit in Oregon’s largest city on Tuesday, which was expected to be the hottest day of a scorching spell that will be unusually long for this part of the U.S. It was also a new daily record for the city for July 26, besting the previous high set in 2020. Oregon health officials said there has been an uptick in the number of people reporting heat-related illness in emergency departments, and the number of those calling emergency services numbers for similar symptoms. “Heat-related illness daily visits are above expected levels statewide,” said Jonathan Modie, lead communications officer at the Oregon Health Authority’s Public Health Division. He said there were 32 such visits to emergency departments on Monday compared to three to five per day before the heat wave began. Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency across much of the state, warning the extreme temperatures might cause utility outages and transportation disruptions. Portland officials opened cooling centers in public buildings and installed misting stations in parks. TriMet, which operates public transportation in the Portland metropolitan area, will allow passengers who cannot afford fares to ride for free when heading to cooling centers.


Baden: Punk’s Ice Cream Shoppe has been forced to temporarily close after a car crashed into the building Sunday night. Owner Mariellen Ketterer said the incident occurred about 7 p.m. when a car struck the building’s left side along State Avenue in Baden. The shop was open for business at the time but was forced to close immediately, and Ketterer announced on Facebook it would remain closed until further notice. It is unknown why the car crashed into the building or if the driver or anyone else was injured during the accident. Officers from the Baden Police Department were unavailable to comment on Monday afternoon.

Rhode Island

East Providence: The ACLU of Rhode Island said it is concerned a system recording audio and video in the City Clerk’s office might be illegally capturing conversations between visitors in the room. ACLU Executive Director Steven Brown wrote to Mayor Roberto L. DaSilva earlier this month, after receiving a complaint from someone visiting City Hall who saw a sign indicating that video and audio surveillance was taking place. In his letter, Brown asked DaSilva for more information about the system and asked that he “take immediate steps to address the legitimate privacy concerns that this surveillance technology raises.” DaSilva, in a three-page response to Brown, wrote a video system has been in place since 2014, but that audio in the clerk’s office was added several weeks ago after “a few customer complaints related to their interactions with city employees.” “Please be assured that the City believes that its use and placement of cameras and audio recordings is fully compliant and consistent with ‘reasonable expectations of privacy’ and various statutory requirements,” DaSilva said in his letter to Brown.

South Carolina

Columbia: South Carolina can continue enforcing its six-week abortion ban after a judge denied a request to temporarily block it amid a legal fight that is now headed to the state Supreme Court. Planned Parenthood South Atlantic and other plaintiffs had asked the judge for an injunction while their lawsuit challenging the ban moves through the courts. The lawsuit argued the law violates the state constitution’s rights to privacy and equal protection. South Carolina Deputy Solicitor General Thomas Hydrick on Tuesday argued voters did not intend to cover abortion rights when they approved the state’s right to privacy in 1971.

South Dakota

Sioux Falls: An animal rights organization filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture asking for an investigation into a Sanford Research scientist. The complaint from Stop Animal Exploitation Now was filed by the group after it obtained a document showing that privileges to perform experiments on animals by Shanta Messerli had been permanently revoked. A letter from Sanford Research to the USDA’s Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare indicated Messerli’s privileges were revoked in January 2021. After an appeal to the Sanford Research Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, her privileges were restored to perform two specific experiments under direct supervision. But the letter, signed by David Pearce, the president of innovation and research for Sanford’s World Clinic, said Messerli received a subsequent report of noncompliance while conducting an experiment with funding from the Department of Defense. The USDA has the authority to regulate animal research laboratories. The self-reported letter from Sanford Research to USDA was dated May 2. A Sanford spokesperson did not immediately respond for comment. The USDA did not immediately respond.


Memphis: The Memphis district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has a new commander for the second time in about a month. Col. Brian D. Sawser assumed command of the expansive district at a ceremony Friday in Memphis, the Corps said in a news release. Lt. Col. Robert W. Green had been named commander in mid-June, and the Corps had said Green would be handing over command to Sawser this month. Sawser now leads a district that covers 25,000 square miles in parts of Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois and Kentucky. He is responsible for flood damage reduction, navigation, environmental stewardship, emergency operations and other civil works along 610 miles of the Mississippi River and the White River. The district manages levees, tributaries, harbors and navigation channels connected to the river.


Balch Springs: A grass fire apparently sparked on the shoulder of a freeway swept about 300 yards across tinder-dry open field to a suburban Dallas subdivision Monday, burning through wooden fences and torching a row of at least eight homes on the subdivision’s edge. The blaze was the latest in drought-stricken north Texas, which has been vulnerable to wildfires for at least two weeks. It was initially unknown what sparked the fire just off Interstate 20 in Balch Springs about 4 p.m. Monday. There were no immediate reports of injuries. Aerial video showed the fire spread up and down the street as firefighters and homeowners working in 103 degree heat tried to prevent the fire from spreading to more of the bricked frame homes. One end of the fire spread to a home where a panicked dog ran back and forth before running through a pet door at a neighboring home. The dog’s fate was not immediately known. Fire crews from Dallas and other nearby suburbs have gone to the scene to assist Balch Springs crews.


St. George: Utah reported far fewer coronavirus cases in the week ending Sunday, adding 6,870 new cases. That’s down 11.8% from the previous week’s total of 7,789. Utah ranked 34th among the states where coronavirus was spreading the fastest on a per-person basis, a USA TODAY Network analysis of Johns Hopkins University data showed. Cases fell in seven counties, with the largest declines in Salt Lake County, with 2,765 cases from 3,162 a week earlier; in Utah County, with 1,156 cases from 1,284; and in Tooele County, with 167 cases from 226.


Burlington: Federal prosecutors said a man charged with killing his mother at sea in 2016 in a plot to inherit millions should remain behind bars pending trial because he poses a flight risk and danger to others. The prosecutors filed a motion in U.S. District Court in Burlington on Friday, opposing a request by Nathan Carman to be released. Carman, 28, who lives in Vernon, was charged in May with killing his mother, Linda, of Middletown during a fishing trip in 2016 off the coast of New England in which his boat sank. He was found floating in a raft and rescued eight days after departing from a Rhode Island marina. He pleaded not guilty in May in his mother’s death. Prosecutors also have accused Carman of killing his grandfather, John Chakalos, who they said was shot in his home in Windsor in 2013 as part of a scheme to obtain money and property from his grandfather’s estate. Carman has not been charged in that case. Earlier this month, Carman’s attorneys filed a motion seeking his release, saying the evidence against him is “tenuous at best” and he does not pose a flight risk or danger. The attorneys said Carman is willing to surrender his passport, submit to electronic monitoring and turn over all the money he has – $10,000 – to a third party or post some of that money as bail.


Richmond: The state police has temporarily reduced the operating hours for its Med-Flight helicopter service in central and southwest Virginia because of a shortage of pilots. The state police said until more pilots can be hired and trained, the service has been reduced from 24-hour coverage to 16 hours a day, from 8 a.m. through midnight, The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. The changes went into effect on Sunday. In the meantime, private, for-hire air ambulance services such as those offered by VCU Health Systems and HCA Hospitals will fill the gap in the Richmond area. Med-Flight is free, but the private services bill patients for the transport. In most cases, the fee is covered by a patient’s health care insurance.


Royal City: A Moses Lake woman drowned Sunday trying to rescue a dog in a canal, according to the Grant County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies and medics responded at about 12:45 p.m. to a report of a woman who fell into a canal off Dodson Road Southwest, near Road 12 Southwest, about 3 miles east of Royal City, the Longview Daily News reported. Witnesses told deputies the 46-year-old woman, later identified as Brigetta Delgado, was trying to rescue a dog when she fell into the canal. She went under and did not resurface, becoming trapped by the turbulence in a plunge pool. Her body was recovered once the water released its grip. Delgado’s body was transported to the coroner’s office for an autopsy and her family was notified.

West Virginia

Charleston: The state Division of Motor Vehicles is now able to process some services that have been affected by a system mainframe outage. The agency is using a workaround to process commercial driver’s licenses, driver’s licenses, instruction permits and driver’s license reinstatement transactions, according to a news release Tuesday from the Department of Transportation. The division is continuing to work with the Office of Technology to restore all services, the release said. Customers should visit the DMV website for up-to-date alerts before they visit a regional office or try the online portal, the Department of Transportation said. The outage was first reported last Wednesday.


Madison: Former President Donald Trump plans to visit Wisconsin to campaign for his endorsed candidate for governor, Tim Michels – an announcement made just two days after Michels said he wouldn’t prioritize a key piece of Trumps’ agenda: to decertify the 2020 presidential election results. Trump plans to hold a rally at the Waukesha County Fairgrounds at 7 p.m. Aug. 5, the Friday before the Aug. 9 primary election. Gates are expected to open at 2 p.m., with first speakers to deliver remarks at 4, followed by Trump at 7. Michels faces former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and state Rep. Tim Ramthun in the Republican primary for governor and has surged in recent polling to the top of the field as he spends millions of his own money to blanket television airwaves since entering the race in April. The primary winner will go on to run against Democratic incumbent Gov. Tony Evers in the general election.


Cheyenne: A lawsuit filed Monday by a Casper women’s health clinic and others seeks to block Wyoming’s new abortion ban just before it’s scheduled to take effect. The lawsuit claimed the new law violates the state constitution with restrictions that will discourage potentially life-saving pregnancy health care in Wyoming, forcing pregnant women to go to other states for necessary procedures. As with all Wyoming laws challenged in court, Wyoming Attorney General Bridget Hill will defend the new law set to go into effect Wednesday, Michael Pearlman, spokesman for Gov. Mark Gordon, said by email. Gordon, a Republican, signed the ban on nearly all abortion in Wyoming in March. The ban was to take effect if the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, which happened June 24. After a more than three-week review, Hill last week gave the go-ahead for Gordon to certify the law to take effect Wednesday. The law will outlaw abortions except in cases of rape or incest or to protect the mother’s life or health, not including psychological conditions. Wyoming until now has allowed abortions up to the point of viability outside the mother, or about 23 weeks into pregnancy.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 50 States