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Wednesday, Feb 10th

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Former Texas Prosecutor Disbarred For Sending Innocent Man To Death Row

Anthony GravesA Texas legal panel voted on Monday to disbar a former prosecutor for sending an innocent man to death row by presenting tainted testimony and making false statements that undermined the defendant's alibi.

The Board of Disciplinary Appeals appointed by the Texas Supreme Court upheld a state licensing board's decision to disbar Charles Sebesta for his conduct in convicting Anthony Graves, who spent 18 years in prison on charges of setting a fire that killed six people before being freed.

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Sheriff Covered Up Mormon Child Marriage

Haleman BarlowFormer FLDS leader Warren Jeffs is in jail for taking two young girls as spiritual brides—and the sordid practice has continued after his arrest, according to local police.

Long after Jeffs’ arrest, an extreme culture of child brides, excommunication, and “concentration camp”-like compounds has allegedly survived under the nose of local law enforcement, including police who are members or former members of the church.

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Texas again denied request to bar Syrian refugees

Texas barred from banning refugeesA judge denied for the second time a request by Texas to bar relief agencies from bringing Syrian refugees into the state, a decision that could have a bearing on the attempts of 30 other governors to block refugees from their states.

U.S. District Judge David Godbey said the Republican leaders who have fought the resettlement have not shown Texas would suffer irreparable harm. The same judge rejected in December the state's request for a restraining order saying the evidence presented was "largely speculative hearsay."

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Obama asks for $1.8 billion in emergency Zika funding

Obama asks for Zika fundsPresident Obama will ask Congress for $1.8 billion in emergency funding to combat the Zika virus through mosquito control programs, vaccine research, education and improving health care for low-income pregnant women, the White House said Monday.

The proposal also includes $355 million in foreign aid to South America, Central America, the Caribbean, where the Zika virus is spreading most rapidly. The World Health Organization declared an international public health emergency last week, warning that the mosquito-borne virus is strongly suspected as the cause of a cluster of cases of microcephaly, a neurological disorder that afflicts the babies of pregnant women with the virus.

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Record numbers renounced their U.S. citizenship in 2015

citizenshipA record number of people, some U.S. citizens and some green card holders, renounced their citizenship or gave up their green cards in 2015, the Treasury Department said.

For the third consecutive year, the number of people giving up their citizenship or green card has topped the previous year. Last year, it was 4,279 people, and it's most likely due to newer, more strict tax policies.

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Hijab-wearing professor to leave Christian college

Hijab-wearing Professor leaves Christian collegeA professor at an evangelical university near Chicago who got in trouble after saying Muslims and Christians worship the same God will leave the school, according to a joint statement released by Wheaton College on Saturday night.

Larycia Hawkins, a tenured political science professor, had been scheduled for a disciplinary hearing in five days to determine whether she would be allowed to remain at Wheaton.

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NY Gov. Cuomo announces regulations to prevent gay 'conversion therapy'

Andrew CuomoNew York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Saturday announced regulations to prevent "conversion therapy," a practice aimed at changing an individual's sexual orientation or gender identity, in the Empire State.

Conversion therapy aims to transform gays and lesbians into heterosexuals. It has been denounced by several leading medical groups, including the American Psychological Association, which says efforts to change sexual orientation through therapy have "serious potential to harm young people because they present the view that the sexual orientation of lesbian, gay and bisexual youth is a mental illness or disorder."

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