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US prison populations down 8% amid coronavirus outbreak

Damini Sharma, Weihua By Of The Marshall Project, Denise Lavoie and Claudia Lauer Of The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 16th - 6:03am

Stephanie Parris was finishing a two-year prison sentence for a probation violation when she heard she’d be going home three weeks early because of COVID-19.

Demand for jobless aid high, even as economy slowly picks up

Christopher Rugaber, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 16th - 4:29am

Unemployment remains painfully high in the U.S. even as economic activity slowly picks up.

Supreme Court clears the way for second federal execution in as many days.

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 16th - 12:59am

Supreme Court clears the way for second federal execution in as many days.

Stacked chairs a symbol of California reclosing amid virus

Jae C. Hong, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 11:05pm

When restaurants and bars began reopening in California after a stay-at-home order, employees took down caution tape, hung “Welcome Back” signs and placed chairs neatly around tables in preparation for customers.

California counties see virus spikes; Rose Parade canceled

Christopher Weber, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 11:03pm

School districts barred campus reopenings, the Rose Parade was canceled and San Francisco doubled down on business restrictions as California hit a near-record level of confirmed coronavirus cases amid a surging outbreak.

Sailors battle hot spots aboard burning U.S. Navy warship

Julie Watson, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 11:02pm

Sailors are inching their way through the bowels of a U.S. Navy warship in Southern California to douse every smoldering hot spot from a fire that has burned for days aboard the docked vessel.

Court clears way for federal execution of man with dementia

Michael Balsamo and Jessica Gresko, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 10:46pm

The Supreme Court early Thursday cleared the way for a second federal execution this week. The vote to allow the execution of Wesley Ira Purkey, said to be suffering from dementia, was 5-4, with the court's four liberal members dissenting.

Illinois woman faces up to 60-year term in slaying of son, 5

Don Babwin, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 10:01pm

A northern Illinois woman who pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the beating death of her 5-year-old son faces a maximum sentence of 60 years in state prison when she returns to court on Thursday.

Georgia gov. explicitly voids mask orders in 15 localities

Jeff Amy and Ben Nadler, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 7:56pm

Georgia's Gov. Brian Kemp is explicitly banning Georgia's cities and counties from ordering people to wear masks in public places. He voided orders on Wednesday that at least 15 local governments across the state had adopted even though Kemp had earlier said cities and counties had no power to order masks.

Rapper Kanye West files for Oklahoma presidential ballot

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 7:43pm

Rap superstar Kanye West has qualified to appear on Oklahoma’s presidential ballot, the first state where he met the requirements before the filing deadline.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp explicitly voids local mask mandates, as other states order face coverings to fight pandemic

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 7:42pm

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp explicitly voids local mask mandates, as other states order face coverings to fight pandemic.

Trump replaces campaign manager amid sinking poll numbers

Jill Colvin, Zeke Miller and Jonathan Lemire, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 6:49pm

President Donald Trump shook up his campaign staff Wednesday amid sinking poll numbers less than four months before the election, replacing campaign manager Brad Parscale with veteran GOP operative Bill Stepien.

California man sentenced in $6M modern art fraud scheme

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 6:47pm

A Southern California man who authorities say tried to sell $6 million worth of phony paintings he claimed were created by Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat and other modern masters was sentenced Wednesday to five years in federal prison.

Some chosen to design Mississippi flag without rebel symbol

Emily Wagster Pettus, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 6:07pm

A mayor, a former state Supreme Court justice and a community college president are among the people chosen to design a new Mississippi flag to replace one state officials recently retired because it included the Confederate battle emblem that's widely condemned as racist.

ASU, NCAA sued over death of linebacker found to have CTE

Jacques Billeaud, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 5:28pm

The father of a former Arizona State University linebacker has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the university and NCAA, alleging his son’s suicide came during a mental breakdown caused by four concussions he suffered a few years earlier while playing college football.

Man sentenced in death of Nebraska college student

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 5:26pm

A man was sentenced Wednesday to 71 years to life in prison in the death of a Nebraska college student whose body has never been found.

2 charged in deadly California kidnapping of China citizen

The Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 5:25pm

Two men were charged Wednesday with kidnapping a Chinese national from a Los Angeles-area shopping mall in a $2 million ransom scheme that went wrong when the victim died from his injuries, authorities said.

Los Angeles in 'dangerous phase' as virus cases surge

Christopher Weber, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 5:18pm

Coronavirus cases have surged to record levels in the Los Angeles area, putting the nation’s largest county in “an alarming and dangerous phase” that if not reversed could overwhelm intensive care units and usher in more sweeping closures, health officials said Wednesday.

Virus deaths hit new high in Texas as governor urges masks

Paul J. Weber and Juan A. Lozano, Associated Press  |  Posted Jul 15th - 5:14pm

Signs in the Texas Panhandle urged voters to wear masks. Polling precincts were already staffed thin because some election workers backed out of the state's primary runoffs, cautious about the coronavirus that socked the rural meatpacking region in May.