Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wednesday summary

Danny Nutt, Houston's younger brother, stepped down as Arkansas' running backs coach because of a recurring brain condition that has caused constant headaches and made even simple tasks hard to do.

Arkansas senators are split over legislation to force troop withdrawal in Iraq. Democratic leaders ordered a rare all-nighter to test Republican resolve to kill the measure that requires most U.S. forces out of Iraq by April. Sen. Blanche Lincoln supports the legislation. Sen. Mark Pryor, who is critical of making public any withdrawal deadline, opposes it.

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel says that his office’s research shows that former Gov. Mike Huckabee and people in his administration broke no laws when more than 90 computer hard drives were crushed before Huckabee left office in January.

The state attorney general's office has received the names of about 50 Arkansas sex offenders who created profiles on the MySpace Web site.

Defense attorneys attacked the reliability of evidence gathered by the Russellville police department in the trial of Kevin Jones for the murder of beauty queen Nona Dirksmeyer. At issue is the time when Jones made the bloody handprint on the lamp believed to be the murder weapon. Expert witnesses also questioned the failure to thoroughly search Dirksmeyer’s apartment for fingerprint evidence and to check her computer and cell phone for outgoing text messages.

The state panel that regulates the judiciary may hold a hearing in August, not this month, to determine if state Court of Appeals Judge Wendell Griffen broke rules restricting judges’ speech off the bench, the Supreme Court ruled.

Voters in Arkansas’ 4th Congressional District want Congress to take action on global warming, according to a survey to prod the district’s lawmaker, Rep. Mike Ross. The survey, released Monday and commissioned by the Natural Resources Defense Council, found almost 70 percent of 4th District voters consider global warming to be a “serious problem.”

Benton County Coroner Kimberly Scott resigned Tuesday as part of plea negotiations in a criminal case against her for three felony charges and two misdemeanors. Scott was arrested following an investigation after two of her employees told police they suspected Scott was ingesting medications seized from homes of deceased persons.

A Danish maker of fiberglass windmill blades is expected to announce that it will invest at least $150 million to build a manufacturing plant at the Little Rock Port. Ultimately, 1400 new jobs could be created.

The Little Rock School Board voted 6-0 Tuesday night to appoint Linda Watson of North Little Rock as interim school district superintendent. She is replacing Roy Brooks, whose contract was bought out in May.

Little Rock police are wrapping up their investigation of the drowning of a 6-year-old Monday and expect the file to be given to the prosecutor by the end of the week. The accident happened on a daycare field trip at a private West Little Rock pool. Steve Ma drowned in only three feet of water.

Court proceedings were held in private Tuesday in a murder case for two defendants in a May 2006 road rage shooting in Lowell. Hours of discussion between 5 attorneys and Benton County Circuit Judge Tom Keith were conducted in the judge's chambers, and the judge said all motions are being filed under seal. Later in the afternoon, a courtroom hearing was conducted with attorneys standing at the bench out of hearing range for observers.

Franklin Greenwood, the missing tuberculosis patient, is back to the hospital from which he escaped more than two weeks ago. He was captured by Little Rock police Tuesday morning.

Gregory Allen Henderson of Atkins is charged with the rape of his two daughters. According to testimony of Pope County Sheriff investigators, Henderson admitted sexually abusing both girls.

A Hope man, Avery Steffon Rogers Jr., is facing two counts of sexual indecency with a minor after internet conversations with a Conway police officer who assumed the persona of a 14 year-old girl. It is alleged that Rogers twice exposed himself on a webcam. Rogers could face up to six years in prison, if convicted.

Jerry Moody of Marvell is under arrest after he allegedly attempted to choke and attacked his wife, Helen Moody, with a hot iron. Moody is charged with first degree domestic battery and terroristic threatening.

St. Francis County may join a lawsuit filed in Independance County against several companies that produce legal substances, ephedrine and psuedoephedrine. The lawsuit is seeking to recoup damages from the companies that the counties have incurred while fighting methamphetamine production and use.

University Avenue at the Interstate 630 interchange will close from 11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. today (Wed.) as workers install a new 150-foot-tall light pole.

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