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Supreme court considers taking case of man given life in prison for growing pot

SCOTUS to take up life sentence for growing potThe US supreme court is poised on Friday to decide whether to take on the case of a 76-year-old disabled army veteran handed a sentence of life in prison without parole for growing marijuana in his back yard to alleviate his own health problems.

If the court does not review the case, Lee Carroll Brooker is destined to die behind bars even though judges in his native Alabama have declared this was not an appropriate punishment.

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Board OKs Parole for Former Manson Cult Member Van Houten

Leslie Van HoutenA California panel recommended parole Thursday for former Charles Manson follower Leslie Van Houten more than four decades after she went to prison for the notorious killings of a wealthy grocer and his wife.

The decision will now undergo administrative review by the Board of Parole Hearings. If upheld it goes to Gov. Jerry Brown, who has the final word on whether the now-66-year-old Van Houten is released from the California Institution for Women in Chino.

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Anne Jackson, Stage Star With Her Husband, Eli Wallach, Dies at 90

Anne Jackson diesThe actress and her husband Eli were considered one of the most acclaimed couples in American theater history, having appeared together in 20 plays both on and off-Broadway over the course of 50 years.

After meeting in 1946 while appearing in the Tennessee Williams play This Property Is Condemned, they wed two years later and continued collaborating in shows by revered playwrights such as Bernard Shaw, Anton Chekhov and Eugene Ionesco.

One of their most memorable projects was in Murray Schisgal's comedy Luv, which also starred Alan Arkin. The production, directed by Mike Nichols, won three Tony Awards.

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Franciscan friars face hearing on child endangerment charges

Franciscan friars charged with child endangermentThree Franciscan friars face a hearing on charges they allowed a suspected sexual predator to teach at a Pennsylvania high school and hold other jobs where he molested more than 100 children, including in Ohio.

Thursday’s hearing will determine whether Robert D’Aversa, Anthony Criscitelli, and Giles Schinelli stand trial on child endangerment and conspiracy charges.

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Ringo Starr cancels North Carolina concert over anti-LGBT bill

Ringo Starr cancels NC concertBeatles legend Ringo Starr is the latest musician to join the chorus against the anti-LGBT bill in North Carolina.

The 75-year-old Starr drummed up more attention against the Southern state's House Bill 2 by cancelling his June 18 concert at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary.

"I'm sorry to disappoint my fans in the area, but we need to take a stand against this hatred," he said in a statement. "Spread peace and love."

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Dozens of killings by US police ruled justified without public being notified

 US police killings justifiedDozens of killings by police in the US are being ruled justified without the public being notified, according to a Guardian study that sheds new light on the lack of official transparency surrounding the use of lethal force by law enforcement officers.

Officers involved in one in every six deaths recorded during the first quarter of 2015 have a year later been cleared of wrongdoing and returned to work despite no announcements being made by authorities or local media reports appearing.

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Louisiana Governor Signs Executive Order To Protect LGBT Rights

John bel edwardsLouisiana Governor John Bel Edwards on Wednesday signed an anti-discrimination order protecting the rights of gay and transgender people, aligning his state on the liberal side of a political divide playing out across the South.

The Democrat’s executive order also protects state employees and employees of state contractors against discrimination based on other criteria including race, religion, disability or age. It also bans state agencies from discrimination while offering an exemption for churches and religious organizations.

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