|Arkansas puts first killer to death in planned double execution - |
Arkansas executed the first of two inmates scheduled to be put to death on Monday after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to grant a last-minute reprieve, state officials said. Jack Jones, 52, was pronounced dead at 7:20 CDT (0020 GMT on Tuesday) at the Cummins Unit prison, about 75 miles (120 km) southeast of the state capital, Little Rock. Jones was convicted of raping and killing Mary Phillips, 34, in 1995 and trying to murder her 11-year-old daughter.
|Arkansas preps for first U.S. double execution since 2000 - |
The U.S. Supreme Court denied last-minute appeals from one of two Arkansas killers scheduled for execution on Monday evening, clearing the way for the first of two back-to-back executions to proceed. Jack Jones, 52, who raped and killed a woman in 1995 and left her 11-year-old daughter for dead, and Marcel Williams, 46, who kidnapped, raped and murdered a woman in 1997, were scheduled for lethal injection in what would be the first time in 17 years that a U.S. state executed two inmates on the same day. The two men separately filed 11th-hour applications with the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday afternoon seeking to have their executions halted.
|Trump pushes Democrats on border wall as government shutdown looms - |
U.S. President Donald Trump pressed Democrats on Monday to include funds for his promised border wall with Mexico in spending legislation as lawmakers worked to avoid a looming shutdown of the federal government. Republicans control both chambers of Congress, but a White House-backed bill to gut former President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, failed to gather full party support and imploded last month.
|Students sue UC Berkeley over canceled Ann Coulter speech - |
(Reuters) - Students who invited conservative commentator Ann Coulter to speak at the University of California at Berkeley sued school officials on Monday, saying their cancellation of the event was discriminatory and violated free speech rights. The Berkeley College Republicans and the Young America's Foundation said in their lawsuit, filed in federal court in San Francisco, that U.C. Berkeley was violating their constitutional rights seeking to "burden or ban" events "involving the expression of conservative viewpoints." The groups named University of California President Janet Napolitano and other university officials in the lawsuit. Coulter had been scheduled to speak on April 27 but the appearance was canceled by the university, Berkeley citing violence that broke out at the campus in February hours before another right-wing media figure, Milo Yiannopoulos, was scheduled to speak.
|State Department website posts article on Trump's Florida resort - |
By Yeganeh Torbati WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. State Department website on Monday took down an article it published this month about President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort which had prompted criticism from prominent ethics experts that the piece represented use of public office for private gain. The original article was posted on April 4 on the "Share America" website, overseen by the State Department's Bureau of International Information Programs. It was also shared on the websites and social media pages of several U.S. embassies, including those in the United Kingdom, Portugal and Albania, as well as the State Department's Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs.