Previous Nevada Journal articles

Officer in Ferguson shooting characterized

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — A police officer whose shooting death of an unarmed 18-year-old ignited racial upheaval in a St. Louis suburb has been characterized as either an aggressor whose deadly gunfire constituted a daylight execution or a law enforcer wrongly maligned for just doing his job.

An incomplete picture of Texas-born Ferguson officer Darren Wilson has emerged since Aug. 9, when authorities say the white six-year police veteran killed Michael Brown during a confrontation in the predominantly black city where all but three of the 53 police officers are white.

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Government development authority
suckered in $1.3M bond fraud

Ex-governor and ex-National Guard officer promoted
bogus sweetner factory for jobs and economic development

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — The former CEO of a supposed sweetner firm committed fraud to secure almost $1.3 million from bond funds that were supposed to be used to build an artificial sweetener plant in a central Missouri town, a federal judge ruled in a bankruptcy case.

In a ruling issued Friday, U.S. District Judge Nanette Laughrey rejected all appeals raised by Bruce Cole and his wife, Nanette, and ordered them to repay $904,167 that had been transferred to their personal accounts and $360,000 sent overseas to creditors, The Columbia Daily Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/XxiCuG ).

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Autopsy: Michael Brown shot 6 to 8 times

One shot entered top of skull, suggesting Brown was bent forward toward officer

FERGUSON, Mo. — A St. Louis County autopsy has found that the large black teenager killed during a confrontation with a white police officer was shot six to eight times.

County medical examiner's office administrator Suzanne McCune says the autopsy showed Michael Brown was hit in the head and chest. McCune would not confirm whether Brown was hit elsewhere on his body or discuss other details.

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US settles with Kansas over alleged pension fraud

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Federal authorities announced Monday that Kansas has agreed settle a securities fraud charge accusing the state of misleading investors about the financial health of its public employee pension system in 2009 and 2010 — at the time the second-worst underfunded system of its kind in the nation.

The Securities and Exchange Commission said Monday that the state has consented to its cease-and-desist order to settle the case, without admitting or denying its findings. No financial sanctions were imposed. The SEC noted Kansas has since made changes and blamed insufficient procedures and poor communication between state agencies for the problem, which happened under the administration of then-Gov. Mark Parkinson, a Democrat.

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State’s $1.2 million gift to SolarCity provides
‘No net benefit to Nevadans’ — economist

CARSON CITY An expert-witness report filed in a constitutional challenge to the State of Nevada’s “Catalyst Fund” says taxpayer-dollar subsidies like the $1.2 million the state is attempting to give SolarCity, Inc. “do not provide any net benefit to the state or to its citizens.”

Dr. Randall G. Holcombe — DeVoe Moore Professor of Economics at Florida State University — made the comments and is an expert witness in the lawsuit brought by NPRI’s Center for Justice and Constitutional Litigation (CJCL) to defend the Nevada Constitution’s ban on the gifting of taxpayer funds to private corporations.

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America's religious liberty fight recast

Not long ago, when religious liberty cases reached the courts, the people seeking protection for their beliefs were mostly from small faith groups and their lawyers were liberals.

The contested issues were narrow: a demand that plain, black Amish buggies carry bright safety triangles, for instance, or bans on hallucinogenic tea in a Native American ritual. The resolutions of these cases were as narrowly drawn as the complaints themselves. A judge might carve out an exemption for the practice in question, and life would go on as usual for everyone else.

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CCSD explains why ‘Open Book’
website now less user friendly

District denies retreating from former superintendent’s transparency initiative

LAS VEGAS — The Clark County School District says what appeared to be the loss of previously reported financial data on the district's online "Open Book" web tool was really only a glitch inadvertently introduced into the site by programmers seeking to modify it for Ipad users.

Nevada Journal published a story Thursday afternoon reporting on the apparently inaccessible data and noting that line-item information referenced by the Journal in recent stories — such as the district’s spending on outside legal counsel — no longer appeared when a user clicked on the relevant budget heading.

That Thursday story, however, conclusively stated that “the state's largest school district has moved to conceal budgetary line items from the public on its online ‘Open Book’ tool.”

Nevada Journal retracts that allegation and apologizes.

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Education

‘You have every right to fight for your kids’

Civil rights pioneer speaks to Nevada parents about their rights

“I don’t want to go there, Daddy. They’re mean to us,” she said.

It was 1966 in Little Rock, Arkansas, and Virginia — one of about 135 black kids selected to desegregate Central High School — was talking with her father.

She was telling him how hard every day was and how horrible some of the white kids were acting.

Almost 10 years before, Arkansas Gov. Orval Faubus, defying a federal court order, had used the state National Guard to block nine black students from attending Central High. Then U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower had federalized the Guard and, for good measure, sent in the 101st Airborne to protect the nine, even escorting them into class and through the halls.

By 1966, however, Central High was still not integrated. And Virginia and her twin sister Harrietta were experiencing what it was to desegregate a previously segregated public high school.

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Bribery case begins against
2 Utah attorneys general

Former Utah AGs Mark Shurtleff, left, and John Swallow. SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Two former Utah attorneys general were to appear in court on bribery charges Wednesday, kicking off what legal experts say is a complex case that could take years to resolve as lawyers navigate a scandal involving nearly two dozen charges, hundreds of thousands of pages of evidence and some dubious witnesses.

Mark Shurtleff and John Swallow, who between them spent nearly 13 years running Utah's top law enforcement office, were expected to make a brief joint appearance in a Salt Lake City courtroom.

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San Francisco political adviser pleads not guilty

Former school board member had used post to represent clients with school district

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A California political consultant charged with bribery, racketeering and other counts in a sweeping indictment that names a state senator has pleaded not guilty.

Keith Jackson, a former San Francisco school board member, entered the plea on Monday to the bribery and racketeering counts as well as charges of murder-for-hire, conspiracy and firearms trafficking.

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