South Carolina bill banning trans girls from women's sports takes first steps in the state House
COLUMBIA, S.C. — A bill that would effectively ban transgender girls from participating in high school and middle school women's sports took its first steps in the South Carolina House on Wednesday. The bill was approved by a panel of lawmakers in a House Judiciary subcommittee by a vote of 3-1 after hearing testimony from dozens of residents. Lawmakers voted to move the bill forward after South Carolina Superintendent Molly Spearman and other critics of the legislation called on lawmakers to vote against the initiative. "My responsibility as state superintendent is to make sure every child fe...
The State (Columbia, S.C.)
Transgender inmate sues Michigan prison system: I was forced to bunk with rapist, then got raped
DETROIT — A transgender female prisoner says she repeatedly begged not to be housed with a convicted rapist, but was forced to share a bunk with him anyway — and then got raped within 24 hours, according to a new federal lawsuit filed against the Michigan Department of Corrections. The lawsuit alleges that multiple MDOC staff members ignored the inmate's pleas for help, accused her of lying, and mocked and laughed at her as her bunkmate called her slurs while other inmates taunted her. After her attack, one officer was half asleep when she went to her for help while another two prison officers...
Detroit Free Press
Microplastics found in 100% of sampled Pennsylvania waterways, study shows
Studies released this week suggest microplastics — tiny polymer fragments — are ubiquitous in local waterways, even finding their way into the guts and digestive tracts of the prized blue crabs that populate the Delaware Bay. PennEnvironment, a statewide environmental nonprofit, released a study Wednesday that found microplastics in 53 waterways sampled in Pennsylvania, including the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers. And all local waterways, including many creeks, showed the presence of at least three of the four types of plastics sampled: tiny fibers, fragments, films or microbeads the size of ...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Becerra’s nomination to lead health agency heads to Senate floorWASHINGTON — California Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s nomination to become Health and Human Services secretary is headed to the Senate floor after the Finance Committee deadlocked Wednesday in a party-line vote. Senate rules now allow Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., to bring the nomination to the full Senate. After two hearings failed to stymie Becerra’s progress or convince Democrats not to support him, he appeared on track for approval. Republicans had zeroed in on derailing Becerra’s confirmation, critici...
Tribune News Service
Missouri man threatened to murder Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II day after Capitol riot, DOJ says
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A southwest Missouri man has been indicted for threatening to murder two members of the U.S. House, including Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II, according to federal prosecutors. The three-count indictment charging Kenneth R. Hubert, 63, of Marionville, alleges he threatened to assault and kill Cleaver, a Democrat who represents Kansas City, on Jan. 7 with the "intent to impede, intimidate and interfere" with Cleaver's official duties, according to a Department of Justice news release. The alleged threat came a day after the riot at the U.S. Capitol, where a violent mob breached the b...
The Kansas City Star
Pa. man imprisoned 30 years says DNA can clear him of murder. The DA won't run the test
PHILADELPHIA — For 30 years, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has held the position that John Brookins is a killer who fatally stabbed 58-year-old Sheila Ginsberg in her Bristol Township home just days before Christmas 1990. A jury agreed, and he was sentenced to life without parole. Brookins, of Bucks, has maintained that he is an innocent man — and that his fingerprints were at the scene only because he walked in on Ginsberg's daughter committing the deadly assault. DNA tests could get to the truth, Brookins has long argued. But the Bucks County district attorney has refused to run them. Now...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Free Georgia photo ID card proposed for absentee voting requirements
ATLANTA — Georgia House Speaker David Ralston announced a plan Wednesday to offer free state ID cards that could be used for voting, opening bank accounts and traveling on airlines. The ID cards would help voters comply with absentee voting identification requirements included in election overhaul legislation that passed the state House on Monday. Under House Bill 531, voters requesting an absentee ballot would need to provide a driver’s license number, a state ID number or a copy of other identifying documents. “I am committed to eliminating barriers to voting for all legally eligible Georgia...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Illinois man gets 12 years in federal prison for conspiring to assist ISIS
CHICAGO — A Zion man was sentenced Wednesday to 12 years in federal prison for attempting to aid the Islamic State terrorist group by providing cellphones to an undercover FBI agent to be used as detonators for bombs. Joseph Jones and his friend Edward Schimenti were convicted by a federal jury in 2019 of conspiracy to provide material support to a terrorist organization. In handing down the sentence for Jones, U.S. District Judge Andrea Wood said that while any terrorism case is serious, the scheme that Jones was convicted of “was not of comparable severity” as many others. “This is not a cas...
‘Embarrassed’ Cuomo responds to sexual misconduct claims, says he has no intention of stepping down
ALBANY, N.Y. — An “embarrassed” Gov. Andrew Cuomo choked up Wednesday as he addressed sexual harassment claims made against him and resisted calls for his resignation. The governor addressed the mounting accusations for the first time during a remote briefing from the state Capitol, apologizing for acting “in a way that made people feel uncomfortable” and saying he “never touched anyone inappropriately.” Cuomo said while he is “embarrassed” by the allegations, he wants New Yorkers to hold off on forming an opinion on the matter until the conclusion of a just-begun probe being conducted by Atto...
New York Daily News
Former NFL player Kellen Winslow II sentenced to 14 years in rape case
VISTA, Calif. — Calling former NFL player Kellen Winslow II “a sexual predator,” a Vista judge on Wednesday sentenced the namesake son of the Chargers’ legend to 14 years in prison for his 2019 convictions for rape and other crimes involving sexual misconduct. Winslow — once a first-round NFL draft pick and later the highest paid tight-end in the league — must also register as a sex offender for life. Winslow’s sentence was expected. He had been looking at a range between 12 to 18 years after his conviction for raping a homeless woman and other charges, convictions reached at trial and through...
The San Diego Union-Tribune