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PLANE CRASH-TRUCKEE

Man injured in Truckee crash is former prosecutor

TRUCKEE, Calif. (AP) — The pilot injured in a Northern California plane crash that killed his wife is a former Orange County lawyer who successfully prosecuted the notorious 1970s serial killer Rodney Alcala.

Richard Farnell is recovering in a Reno, Nev., hospital from injuries sustained in Monday's crash of a single-engine plane near the Truckee Tahoe Airport.

His wife, 55-year-old Darla Farnell, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Orange County Register reported Wednesday (http://bit.ly/1dvhkEI) that the 71-year-old Farnell was a deputy district attorney from 1968 to 1981. He prosecuted Alcala among dozens of other criminals before starting a private practice in Newport Beach.

The Piper PA-46 Malibu took off from Santa Ana's John Wayne Airport. It went down in a rugged area about 6 miles southeast of the Truckee airport.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

MISSING WOMAN-DEATH PROBE

Nevada suicide victim lied about missing wife

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The husband of a missing Spanish Springs woman concocted a false story about her supposed death before he committed suicide, but detectives say she too likely is dead.

Washoe County sheriff's Lt. Tom Green told The Associated Press Wednesday they continue to search for 56-year-old Colleen Muhl but fear she was a victim of foul play.

Green says 51-year-old Gerald Muhl consented to multiple interviews with investigators before he was found dead Monday of a self-inflicted gunshot wound a few blocks from their home.

Officers first contacted him Sunday morning after Colleen's sister in California reported her missing.

Muhl told them authorities had notified him that she died Feb. 22 in California.

Green says his last interview was about 11 p.m. Sunday when police told him his story didn't add up.

SHOOTING-VEGAS STRIP CLUB

Attorney named in Vegas strip club slaying case

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A defense attorney was named and a judge scheduled a preliminary hearing April 10 for a 27-year-old ex-convict facing murder and other charges in the shooting death of a man outside a strip club.

Records show that Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Diana Sullivan on Wednesday ordered Christopher Mallett held without bail pending a decision whether he'll stand trial in state court on murder, robbery, burglary and weapon charges.

Mallett is charged with killing 28-year-old Antonio Darrnell Logan in a vehicle Jan. 11 outside the Crazy Horse III nightclub.

He hasn't been asked to enter a plea.

Las Vegas police say Mallett is a gang member who had a prior dispute with Logan.

Records show he served time in state prison on a December 2008 theft conviction.

TRASH ENERGY-LAS VEGAS

Firm drops North Vegas waste-to-energy plant idea

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev. (AP) — A company is dropping its bid to build a waste-burning gasification power plant in North Las Vegas.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1lBLJFW ) that a company representative told the City Council on Wednesday that that EP Renewable Inc. company was withdrawing its application.

Permit engineer Keith Brinkley cited neighbors' concerns about the facility off Losee (LOH'-see) and Lone Mountain roads.

Coral Springs, Fla.-based EP Renewable had proposed a plant costing more than $100 million to convert waste into electricity by burning tires and construction waste at extremely high temperatures.

Captured gases would be used to power a steam turbine.

Proponents had said the project could create 48 megawatts of electricity a day and provide almost 300 jobs.

Neighbors said they feared odors, air pollution, traffic and noise.

VEGAS-PHOENIX INTERSTATE

Interstate linking Vegas, Phoenix faces tough go

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A plan to put an interstate between Las Vegas and Phoenix is gaining steam, but there's still a bumpy road ahead.

Transportation officials in Nevada and Arizona are studying potential routes and hope to put a price tag on the planned stretch of Interstate 11 within the next few months. The road already has big-name support from business leaders and the Republican governors of both states.

But federal funding for highways is overstretched, and there's been little progress toward upgrading the 20-year-old gas tax formula that feeds the account.

Project proponents say they'll have to get creative to make the 300-mile stretch a reality.

The two cities are linked by a highway that's two lanes in some places, and interstate proponents say its quality hampers the region's economic growth.

TSA PRE-CHECK-VEGAS

Vegas airport opens TSA Pre-Check sign-up center

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Travelers can now sign up at McCarran International Airport for speedier security screenings.

Officials with the Transportation Security Administration say they've opened a TSA Pre-Check enrollment center at the Las Vegas airport. Those enrolled in the program are allowed to leave their shoes, belt and light outerwear on while passing through checkpoints.

The program has been available at McCarran since December 2011, but the enrollment center is new. It will be open during regular business hours Monday through Friday.

Applicants must provide the TSA with basic biographical information about themselves, and are eligible for the faster screenings at 117 participating airports if they're accepted.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Associated Press

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