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Thursday, Aug 21st

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Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution in Arizona

Arizona executionAn inmate's execution with lethal drugs in Arizona today took almost two hours as the man gasped and snorted, prompting his lawyers to request an emergency halt to the procedure.

"The execution of Joseph Wood commenced at 1:57 p.m. at the Arizona State Prison Complex (ASPC)-Florence and he was pronounced dead at 3:49 p.m.," Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne said in a statement.

Wood's attorneys filed a motion for emergency stay of the execution after Wood was reported “gasping and snorting for more than an hour,” according to court documents they filed.

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GM recalls 717,950 vehicles in U.S., not for ignition switches

GM recallGeneral Motors Co on Wednesday announced six recalls covering 717,950 vehicles in the United States for varying reasons, although none were related to ignition switch issues.

GM has recalled nearly 15 million vehicles worldwide this year for potentially lethal issues with ignition switches.

The largest recall announced Wednesday is for a potentially loose bolt in power adjustable front seats for several cars from model years 2010 and 2012.

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Supreme Court lifts stay of Arizona execution

Joseph WoodThe U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday knocked down a stay of execution for Arizona Death Row prisoner Joseph Wood, who is scheduled to be put to death Wednesday morning at the Arizona State Prison Complex - Florence.

Wood 55, was sentenced to death for killing his girlfriend and her father in Tucson in 1989.

The Arizona Department of Corrections intends to execute him with a controversial drug called midazolam, which was used in three flawed executions earlier this year in which the dying inmates appeared to suffer respiratory distress. Arizona also frequently uses a controversial method of administering drugs that was at the center of a botched execution in April in Oklahoma, in which the condemned man writhed in pain for more than 40 minutes before dying of an apparent heart attack.

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Detroit retirees vote for major pension cuts – by a landslide

Detroit pensions cutA year after filing for bankruptcy, Detroit is building momentum to get out, especially after workers and retirees voted in favor of major pension changes just a few weeks before a judge holds a crucial trial that could end the largest public filing in U.S. history.

Pension cuts were approved in a landslide, according to results filed shortly before midnight Monday. The tally from 60 days of voting gives the city a boost as Judge Steven Rhodes determines whether Detroit's overall strategy to eliminate or reduce $18 billion in long-term debt is fair and feasible to all creditors.

The rial starts August 14.

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Boston Marathon suspect's friend guilty of obstruction

Tazhayakov convictedA friend of the man suspected in last year's Boston Marathon bombings was convicted Monday of helping to cover up the crime that left three people dead and more than 250 injured.

A federal jury found Azamat Tazhayakov, 20, guilty of obstruction of justice and conspiracy by hindering the investigation into bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, a friend and fellow student at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.

Prosecutors said that after Tazhayakov and another friend, Dias Kadyrbayev, determined that Tsarnaev was a suspect in the bombings, they threw out a backpack and removed a laptop from Tsarnaev's dorm room.

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NYC settles for $2.5 million over Rikers Island jail beating death

Rikers IslandNew York City officials have agreed to pay $2.75 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of a Rikers Island inmate who was allegedly beaten to death by corrections officers.

A spokesman for the city's Law Department on Monday confirmed the settlement with the estate of Ronald Spear, 52, who died in December 2012 at the New York City jail.

In a federal lawsuit filed last year in Manhattan, Spear's father claimed his son was assaulted for complaining that his medical care at the jail was inadequate.

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Florida town stunned by news of police KKK ties

Florida town KKKAnn Hunnewell and her central Florida police officer husband knelt in the living room of a fellow officer's home, with pillow cases as makeshift hoods over their heads. A few words were spoken and they, along with a half-dozen others, were initiated into the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan, she says.

Last week, that five-year-old initiation ceremony stunned residents of the small town of Fruitland Park, who found out an investigative report linked two city officers with the secret hate society that once was violently active in the area. Ann Hunnewell's ex-husband, George Hunnewell, was fired, and deputy chief David Borst resigned from the 13-member Fruitland Park Police Department. Borst has denied being a member.

James Elkins, a third officer who Ann Hunnewell says recruited her and her husband, resigned in 2010 after his Klan ties became public.

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