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INDIANA LEGISLATURE-PROSECUTOR AUTHORITY

Indiana Republicans aiming to force marijuana prosecutions

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Republican legislators are reacting to the Indianapolis prosecutor’s decision against pressing criminal charges over possessing small marijuana amounts by proposing that the state attorney general could pick a special prosecutor to take over such cases. The bill endorsed in a 6-3 Indiana Senate committee vote Tuesday would let the attorney general’s office step in if a county prosecutor announced a policy of not enforcing a law or was found to have “categorically elected” to not do so. The proposal comes after Democratic Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears announced in September that his office wouldn’t pursue charges against adults for possessing about one ounce or less of marijuana.

CHILDREN KILLED-INDIANA

Indiana woman appealing conviction in fatal school bus crash

ROCHESTER, Ind. (AP) — An Indiana woman convicted in a crash that killed three children who were crossing a highway to board a school bus is appealing her conviction. A notice of appeal was filed Jan. 17 with the Indiana Court of Appeals on behalf of Alyssa Shepherd. The 25-year-old Rochester woman was convicted in October by a Fulton County jury of three counts of reckless homicide, criminal recklessness and passing a school bus, causing injury. Shepherd was sentenced in December to four years in prison. Her attorney says a brief that will include arguments in Shepherd's appeal won't be filed for months.

POLICE CUSTODY DEATH

Court: 2 Indiana officers not liable in teen's custody death

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A federal appeals court has ruled two Indianapolis police officers will not be held liable for the 2015 death of a black teenager who died in police custody after telling officers he was struggling to breathe. The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found there is no evidence the officers were aware that Terrell Day's breathing troubles following his shoplifting arrest were caused or exacerbated by his handcuffs as he laid on the ground. The Indianapolis Star reports the court noted in its Jan. 10 decision that Day weighed about 312 pounds and had an underlying heart condition.

WORKER DEATH-WOODBURN

Worker dies on job at northeastern Indiana tire plant

WOODBURN, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say a worker has died in an industrial accident at the B.F. Goodrich tire plant near Fort Wayne. The Allen County Coroner's Office says 48-year-old Sean Redden of Fort Wayne died from multiple crush injuries due to an industrial press accident. Eric Bruner, a spokesman for parent company Michelin North America. says Redden died during a maintenance procedure. Bruner says the company is “ïn the beginning phase of an investigation of the factors that led to this tragic event."

ELECTION 2020-BUTTIGIEG STAFF

Buttigieg thanks staffers of color for voicing grievances

OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is thanking his staffers of color for feeling able to voice their grievances following a news report that said some had expressed frustrations with the campaign. The New York Times reported Tuesday that some Buttigieg staffers had expressed their concerns during campaign diversity meetings last month. Buttigieg has struggled to garner measurable support among African American voters nationally. Campaigning in Iowa on Tuesday, Buttigieg said that every organization has to work harder to ensure "that inclusion is a reality.”

INDIANA LEGISLATURE-MARRIAGE AGE

Indiana measure looks to limit marriage for those under 18

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana lawmakers could make it more difficult for anyone younger than 18 to get married. The bill is advancing after a House committee heard from women who were 15 or 16 when their parents forced them to marry men who had raped or molested them and then faced more abuse before being able to escape the relationship. Current law allows those younger than 18 to marry if they have parental consent.  A proposal being considered would make 18 the general age for marriage. The only exception would be a 17-year-old if the intended spouse isn’t more than four years older and a juvenile court judge gives permission.

GARY-LIVE GRENADE

Angler snags apparent live grenade in NW Indiana river

GARY, Ind. (AP) — A man fishing from a northwestern Indiana bridge reeled in an apparent live grenade, prompting a road closure until the device was removed by a bomb squad. A Gary police officer who as called to the Little Calumet River bridge Monday evening learned that a man who had been fishing had pulled up what appeared to be a live grenade. Gary Police Lt. Dawn Westerfield tells The (Northwest Indiana) Times that the road that traverses the bridge was closed off and the Porter County Bomb Squad summoned for assistance. She says the bomb squad took possession of the grenade without incident.

HUMAN REMAINS-FORT WAYNE

Remains found in NE Indiana ID'd as missing Fort Wayne man

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — Human remains found last fall in northeastern Indiana have been identified as those of a Fort Wayne man who vanished nearly three years ago. The Allen County coroner announced Monday that officials had confirmed that the remains are those of Ryan A. Baughman, who was 28 when he was reported missing in February 2017.  The coroner said in a news release that the cause and manner of Baughman's death will be released when that information becomes available. People walking in a wooded area in northeastern Allen County found his remains in October.