Alabama

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Alabama Schools Locked Down Due to Clowns on Social Media

Multiple threats reported Thursday and Friday

(Newser) - Schools across an Hale County in Alabama were on lock down Friday due to "recent threats from clowns on social media," WBRC reports. And they don't mean clowns in the pejorative sense, either. Clowns—pancake makeup, colorful hair, generally terrifying— have been causing concern and increased patrols... More »

Alabama Paddled 19K Students in One School Year

Many local educators still support the practice that others say is harmful

(Newser) - An old-school form of discipline remains popular in Alabama. The Education Department's Office for Civil Rights has found that almost 19,000 children—2.5% of the state's students—got paddled in public schools during the 2013-2014 school year, reports AL.com . Boys get hit more than girls,... More »

Addict Jailed for Sake of Unborn Baby

Alabama woman admitted to cops she was using heroin

(Newser) - In what police describe as "a sad case, no matter how you look at it," an Alabama judge has ordered a suspected drug addict to remain behind bars until she gives birth to her second child. Authorities say Alexandra Nicole Laird, 21, gave birth to a baby girl... More »

After Ala. Peace Rally, Gunfire Kills 1, Injures 5

Residents in Birmingham community say it was chaos

(Newser) - It was a night that kicked off with peace and ended up in violence. Police in Birmingham, Ala., say one person was killed and five were injured as they stood in the streets of a public housing community after an anti-violence rally Sunday night, AL.com reports. Cops say as... More »

Library Could Start Jailing People for Overdue Books

'We're doing it for the community'

(Newser) - One Alabama library isn't messing around when it comes to overdue books. The News Courier reports the Athens-Limestone Public Library is going to start taking advantage of an old city ordinance that could lead to jail time for people who don't return their copy of Harry Potter. Library... More »

America Has Lot to Learn From National Lynching Memorial

And it's far past time we build one: columnist

(Newser) - A civil-rights lawyer is proposing a $20 million national memorial to the victims of lynching, and Charles Pierce at Esquire says it's far past time for America to build it. "This country has needed a serious homegrown kind of Truth and Reconciliation Commission literally for centuries now,"... More »

5 Murdered After Trying to Protect Woman From Her Ex

Citronelle, Alabama, rocked by mass murder

(Newser) - Laneta Lester had been trying to end her relationship with 27-year-old Derrick Dearman, who allegedly abused her. And so she headed to Citronelle, Alabama, in hopes of finding shelter at a relative's house. The home's inhabitants gave it to her, but Dearman allegedly wrested it away in a... More »

Infant Is Lone Survivor in Grisly Murder of 4, Pregnant Woman

Ala. police say gruesome scene will take them days to sort out

(Newser) - A four-month-old child is the only survivor of a murder scene that Alabama officials are saying is the worst they've encountered, and one that will take days to untangle, reports Al.com . Five people, including a woman reportedly five months' pregnant, were found murdered in rural Citronelle on Saturday... More »

11 Children Orphaned After Plane Crash Kills 3 Couples

4 of the 6 passengers who died Sunday were dentists

(Newser) - Three married couples killed in the crash of a small airplane in Alabama all lived in the university town of Oxford, Mississippi, where city flags were lowered Monday as residents grappled with the loss of so many lives at one time. "I don't even know what to say,... More »

Klansman Behind 1963 Bombing to Stay in Prison

Thomas Edwin Blanton Jr., 78, denied parole

(Newser) - The lone surviving Ku Klux Klansman imprisoned for killing four black girls in a church bombing in 1963 will remain behind bars after Alabama's parole board heeded the victims' families Wednesday and refused an early release. The board rejected parole for Thomas Edwin Blanton Jr., 78, who has served... More »

Suspected Burglar Wrapped in 'Layers' of Tape Dies

Alabama homeowner was waiting for him

(Newser) - Authorities in Washington County, Ala., are investigating the death of a burglary suspect who was tied to a tree by a homeowner. "I would say this is a very unusual case," Sheriff Richard Stringer tells FOX 10 . Tired of his mobile home being broken into, Nathanial Johnson on... More »

Klansman Who Killed 4 Girls Up for Parole

Thomas Blanton has served only 15 years for deadly 1963 church bombing

(Newser) - A Ku Klux Klan member currently serving four life sentences in Alabama for murdering four black girls in 1963 is up for parole after serving only 15 years, AL.com reports. Thomas Blanton was convicted in 2001 of planting a bomb outside a Birmingham Baptist church that killed an 11-year-old... More »

Alabama Campers Arrested Over Colorado Wildfire

More than 600 acres have been scorched, 2K people evacuated

(Newser) - More than 50 Colorado National Guardsmen are helping hundreds of firefighters battle a blaze that the Boulder County Sheriff's Office says was started by two careless campers from Alabama, USA Today and the AP report. Jimmy Suggs, 28, and Zackary Kuykendall, 26, of Vinemont were arrested Sunday and charged... More »

On an Alabama Beach, 57 Dead Sharks

The majority were caught in a net: witnesses

(Newser) - Beachgoers were treated to a jarring sight—and smell—on the western shore of Alabama's Mobile Bay Saturday when they discovered dozens of dead bull sharks. "We kept smelling this awful smell every time a gust of wind would come," a beachgoer tells FOX6 . "We [checked]... More »

An Unlikely Sex Scandal, Revealed by His Wife's iPhone

'GQ' digs into the travails of Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley

(Newser) - Sex scandals are nothing new to politics, but GQ digs in to one more unusual than most that rocked Alabama politics earlier this year. It involves the state's grandfatherly 73-year-old governor, Robert Bentley, and his relationship with Rebekeh Mason, an aide 30 years his junior. Bentley remains in office,... More »

Ex-NASA Astronaut Faces Murder Charges

2 young girls killed in car wreck involving James Halsell Jr.

(Newser) - A retired NASA astronaut who flew on five space shuttle missions has been charged with murder after an early-morning car crash in Alabama took the lives of two young half-sisters, per AL.com . A 2015 Chrysler allegedly being driven by James Halsell Jr., 59, smashed into a Ford Fiesta at... More »

Teacher on Leave After Math Quiz on 'Pimps,' 'Ho's'

Alabama middle school teacher was set to retire this month

(Newser) - Murder, AK-47s, "pimps and ho's"—topics you'd expect to see covered in a police report, not on a middle school math quiz. Yet a teacher in Mobile, Ala., included those subjects on her exam, and she's now been placed on administrative leave because of it,... More »

Fire Ants Kill Woman Planning Mom's Funeral

Such a death is rare in Alabama

(Newser) - Kalyn Rolan's mother died on May 19. Less than 24 hours later, Rolan was dead, too. In what WSFA calls "a story so tragic, it's almost hard to believe," Rolan, 29, was in Selma, Ala., making funeral arrangements when she was attacked by fire ants as... More »

Police: Woman Kills Dog to Help Fake Miscarriage

Husband: 'I loved that dog, man'

(Newser) - An Alabama woman is facing felony animal cruelty charges after, authorities say, she killed her Chihuahua in a failed attempt to fool her husband into thinking she had a miscarriage. After killing the animal, Anita Parker, 43, allegedly sliced open its stomach to gather blood and tissue to aid in... More »

Teen Girl Dies While Playing Tug-of-War at School Event

Maddison Wentworth reportedly complained of a headache and dizziness before collapsing

(Newser) - An Alabama family is reeling after their 13-year-old daughter collapsed and died during a game of tug-of-war during her school's field day last week, WVTM reports. Leslie Wentworth says her daughter Maddison had been excited for the annual event. "She was a beautiful kid," Wentworth says. "... More »

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