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POSTED May 31, 2013 10:13 p.m.

TORNADO HITS OKLAHOMA CITY AREA IN PLAINS OUTBREAK: OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Tornadoes rolled in from the prairie and slammed Oklahoma City and its suburbs on Friday, crumbling cars and tractor-trailers along a major interstate and leading to numerous injuries.

The broad storm hit during the evening rush hour, causing havoc on Interstate 40, a major artery connecting suburbs east and west of the city. To the south, winds approaching 80 mph were forecast for Moore, where a top-of-the-scale EF5 tornado killed 24 on May 20.

Floodwaters collected in streets. Troopers requested a number of ambulances at I-40 near Yukon, west of Oklahoma City.

"I'm in a car running from the tornado," said Amy Sharp, who last week pulled her fourth-grade daughter from the Plaza Towers Elementary School as a storm approached with 210 mph winds. "I'm in Norman and it just hit Yukon where I was staying" since last week's storm.

CHELSEA CLINTON'S MOTHER-IN-LAW ENTERS HOUSE RACE: HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Chelsea Clinton's mother-in-law is running to recapture the Philadelphia-area U.S. House seat that she lost almost 20 years ago, a defeat ascribed to her vote for then-President Bill Clinton's budget proposal that increased taxes on the wealthy.

Marjorie Margolies filed paperwork Thursday to run in the crowded Democratic Party primary for Pennsylvania's 13th congressional district. The incumbent, Democratic Rep. Allyson Schwartz, is running for governor and has said she will not seek re-election, leaving the seat open in 2015.

Margolies, a 70-year-old one-time NBC news reporter, will have plenty of competition. Already, five others have filed to run in the primary, including state Sen. Daylin Leach and state Rep. Brendan Boyle.

She is now the president of Women's Campaign International, which she founded, and teaches at the University of Pennsylvania.

STARBUCKS TO BAN SMOKING WITHIN 25 FEET OF CAFES: NEW YORK (AP) — Starbucks customers will soon have to stamp out their cigarettes before approaching the cafes.

The Seattle-based chain says it will start banning smoking within 25 feet of its stores, beginning Saturday, where permitted by its leases.

Starbucks spokeswoman Jaime Lynn Riley says the intent is to expand the indoor no-smoking policy to the outdoor seating areas.

"If there were any concerns, we would hope to resolve it amicably." Riley said, referring to a customer who might be smoking within the restricted area.

The rule will apply to the 7,000 cafes owned and operated by Starbucks Corp., regardless of whether they have outdoor seating areas.

The policy shouldn't cause a big difference in many areas that already ban smoking within a certain distance of a business entrance.

ZUMBA INSTRUCTOR GETS 10 MONTHS FOR PROSTITUTION: ALFRED, Maine (AP) — A Zumba fitness instructor at the center of a prostitution scandal featuring sex videos, adultery and more than 100 clients told a judge who sentenced her Friday to 10 months in jail that she's happy to have escaped her former life.

Sniffling and fighting back tears, Alexis Wright said she felt relief when police raided her business on Feb. 12, 2012, because she wanted out.

"In my eyes I'm free. I'm free from this," she told the judge. "I have an incredible amount of strength that I knew was in me somewhere. Now that I have the strength I want to encourage others to come forward. I want them to know that there's at least one person out there who'll believe their story, no matter how crazy it seems."

The former single mother was accused of conspiring with insurance business owner Mark Strong to run a prostitution business in which she videotaped clients without their knowledge and kept detailed records over an 18-month period indicating she made $150,000 tax-free. She also collected more than $40,000 in public assistance.

In an odd twist to the already strange case, the defense said in a court document that Wright became part of Strong's private investigation firm and was manipulated into believing she was an "operative" working for the state with the task of investigating "all manner of sexual deviants."

Her attorney, Sarah Churchill, said Friday that Wright, coached by Strong, thought she was investigating sex, even as she was getting paid large sums of money by clients.

 

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