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    Republican U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz says she won't seek reelection to her Indiana seat next year or jump into the Republican primary for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat. Spartz’s announcement Friday further solidifies the chances of U.S. Rep. Jim Banks for the Senate seat. Former Gov. Mitch Daniels declined earlier in the week to become a candidate. The Senate scramble started with current GOP Sen. Mike Braun’s move to make a 2024 run for governor. The Ukrainian-born Spartz has been critical of of alleged corruption in the Ukrainian government since the Russian invasion began. Spartz says she wants to spend more time at home with her high school-aged daughters.

      Police say a Tennessee officer who was shot at a public library in Memphis while responding to a trespassing complaint remains in “extremely critical condition." Police updated the officer's condition Friday. He was hospitalized Thursday after a shooting at the Poplar-White Station Public Library. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said officers were called to the library and encountered a man who had been the subject of a trespassing complaint. The bureau said when officers attempted talking to the man, he pulled out a weapon and shot one of them. Authorities say the other officer drew his weapon, shooting and killing 28-year-old Torence Jackson Jr. of Indianapolis, who was Black. The two officers are also Black.

        Authorities say a shooting at a Tennessee library has left one person dead and a police officer critically wounded. Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Keli McAlister says officers were called Thursday to the Poplar-White Station Public Library about a man who was involved in a confrontation there. She says that when police tried to speak to the man, he drew a weapon and shot one of the officers. The second officer then shot and killed the man, later identified as 28-year-old Torence Jackson Jr. of Indianapolis. The injured officer was transported to the hospital in extremely critical condition. Employees and patrons were inside the library during the shooting, but no one else was injured.

          A Chicago woman is accused of keeping her mother’s dead body in a freezer for nearly two years while living in a nearby apartment. Eva Bratcher appeared in court Thursday on charges of concealing her 96-year-old mother’s death and possessing a fraudulent identification card. Regina Michalski’s body was discovered this week in a freezer in the garage near the apartment she had shared with her daughter. Investigators believe Michalski died in 2021. The 69-year-old Bratcher has past convictions for forgery, and investigators are trying to determine if she was collecting her late mother’s Social Security benefits. Bratcher was being held on a $20,000 bond.

          A judge has sentenced a former health club controller to four years in federal prison for embezzling $4.1 million from the facility. The Chicago Tribune reports that U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman sentenced 58-year-old Peter Craig Savely on Thursday. Savely pleaded guilty in October to one count of bank fraud. He acknowledged in a plea agreement that he wrote fraudulent payroll checks for employees at the East Bank Club and deposited the payouts into accounts he controlled over a seven-year period beginning in 2013. Savely's attorney, Andrew Porter, asked that his client get 2.5 years because he's unemployed and deep in debt.

          Gov. Andy Beshear says Kentuckians who signed up for Medicaid during the COVID-19 pandemic will soon need to shop around to maintain health coverage. He said Thursday that his administration will help people through the transition. Beshear estimates that during the global health crisis, about a quarter-million Kentuckians enrolled in Medicaid, a federal and state health care program for poor and disabled people. Last year, Congress told states they could start removing ineligible people in April. Beshear predicts some Kentuckians will continue qualifying for Medicaid, while he says others will transition into Medicare or private health insurance coverage.

          Three men have been arrested on accusations that they clashed with police officers during separate incidents at the Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol riot. Federal prosecutors announced charges on Wednesday against men from Vermont, Illinois and Pennsylvania, more than two years after the riot that halted the certification of President Joe Biden’s electoral victory. They are among nearly 1,000 people across the U.S. who have been charged with federal crimes in the Capitol attack. The new arrests were of William Nichols, of Manchester, Vermont; Joseph Pavlik, of Chicago; and Dustin Sargent, of Kunkletown, Pennsylvania.

          He gets most of the PR, at least nationally, but Punxsutawney Phil isn't the only groundhog to purport to predict the weather. Not hardly. From Staten Island Chuck in New York City to Jimmy the Groundhog in Wisconsin, there are a lot of them. And their predictions, which of course is a generous term, can be all over the map just as they are. And please do remember Charlotte, a groundhog who died in 2014 a week after the New York City mayor dropped her during festivities.

          NFL prospects are facing the standard barrage of questions designed to probe their personality and attitude. They're less likely to get the outlier questions that players might find demeaning or embarrassing. It's a nod to the greater attention being paid to mental health concerns among athletes. The NFL warned teams in a memo last January that they could be forced to forfeit a draft pick between the first and fourth round and be fined a minimum of $150,000 for out-of-bounds questions, and individual club employees could also face fines or suspensions.

          The family of a suburban Chicago boy who was 12 when an officer shot him in the knee during a 2019 police raid will receive $12 million under a settlement of the family’s lawsuit. The settlement will be paid by the village of Richton Park’s insurance company. Family attorney Al Hofeld Jr. said Wednesday the Richton Park officer apologized last weekend privately to Amir Worship and his mother, Crystal Worship. The village also issued a public apology to the boy and his family, as the settlement required. Amir was shot in May 2019 as police were raiding his family’s Markham home, searching for Crystal Worship’s boyfriend on drug possession charges. The Chicago Sun-Times reports the officer later said the weapon was defective and had accidentally fired.

          Two men who began their careers on factory floors are competing to lead the 373,000 members of the United Auto Workers, a union that helps set standards for wages across the nation’s manufacturing sector. It will be the first-ever direct election of a UAW president in the union’s 88-year history. The race pits the 57-year-old incumbent, Ray Curry, who started his career on the assembly line at a Freightliner truck plant in North Carolina, against Shawn Fain, 54, who began as an electrician at a Chrysler metal casting plant in Kokomo, Indiana. Curry and Fain were the top two finishers in a five-candidate race held in December for a four-year term as UAW president.

          The Iowa athletic department voided the tickets an Illinois spirit group purchased under an assumed identity for the men's basketball game in Iowa City on Saturday. The group known as “Orange Krush” bought 200 tickets but had them canceled after Iowa discovered the tickets were falsely purchased for a Boys and Girls Club in Champaign. Iowa issued a refund and donated the tickets to the Boys and Girls Club of Cedar Rapids. Orange Krush leader Kilton Rauman said he attempted the end-around because he doubts the host school would knowingly sell to a large group cheering the visitor and heckling the home team.


          Disgraced Los Angeles celebrity lawyer Tom Girardi has been indicted in Los Angeles and Chicago on charges of stealing more than $18 million from clients. The charges mark the latest in a string of legal disasters for a once powerful player who rubbed elbows with politicians and celebrities as one of the nation’s most prominent plaintiff’s lawyers, known for winning settlements such as the one portrayed in the movie “Erin Brockovich.” Federal prosecutors say the schemes included stealing funds from clients injured in car and boat crashes and some who lost family members in a 2018 Lion Air crash that killed 189 people.

          Police say the man who was fatally shot by police after entering a Target store in Omaha, Nebraska, armed with an AR-15-style rifle had obtained the weapon just four days earlier at a sporting goods store. No one else was hurt. Court records show that the man, identified by police as 32-year-old Joseph Jones, of suburban Omaha, had no prior felony convictions in Douglas County, where Omaha is located. He entered the store around noon Tuesday, where police said he fired several rounds, sending shoppers and workers scrambling for exits and cowering in bathroom stalls.

          Colorado lawmakers, along with legislators in nine other states, proposed a bill to forgo the requirements for teachers to get relicensed when they move across state lines to tackle teacher shortages. The Interstate Teacher Mobility Compact would effectively allow teaching licenses to be viable across compact members, cutting away the requirement to take tests and pay fees to get relicensed in different states. The agreement will not go into effect until 10 states have passed their bill’s and joined. Colorado’s House Education Committee voted nine to two to send the legislation forward in a hearing on Wednesday.

          A federal judge in Wisconsin has ruled that a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the father of a man shot and killed by Kyle Rittenhouse during a protest in 2020 can proceed against Rittenhouse, police officers and others. The father of Anthony Huber, one of two men shot and killed by Rittenhouse, filed the lawsuit in 2021, accusing officers of allowing for a dangerous situation that resulted in his son’s death. He alleged that Rittenhouse conspired with law enforcement to cause harm to protestors. U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman on Wednesday dismissed motions to dismiss the lawsuit, allowing it to proceed.

          The Kentucky treasurer's office says some people unaffected by tornadoes were mistakenly sent payments from a relief fund funneling private donations into the stricken region. State Treasurer Allison Ball’s office says it canceled payment on 192 checks valued at $192,000 from the Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund after being notified of misdirected payments. Gov. Andy Beshear set up the relief fund following deadly tornadoes that hit western Kentucky in late 2021. He defended its role in the region’s painstaking recovery. Beshear pointed to errors in data provided to his administration as the reason any checks were sent out erroneously.

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