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POSTED August 11, 2014 7:36 p.m.

MAN STRUCK BY 3 VEHICLES, INCLUDING 2 PATROL CARS: GARDNERVILLE, Nev. (AP) — The Nevada Highway Patrol is investigating the death of a pedestrian who was struck by three vehicles on U.S. Highway 395 south of Gardnerville, including two Douglas County sheriff’s patrol cars.

Trooper Dave Gibson said in a statement the man was reported to be standing in the southbound travel lane near Spring Valley Drive when he first was struck by a pickup truck about 11 p.m. Sunday.

He said the man was thrown into the northbound lanes where two on-duty deputies driving patrol cars didn’t see him, and also struck him. All three drivers stopped to assist him, but he died at the scene.

Neither alcohol nor drugs are suspected to have been involved. Gibson said there is no roadway lighting on the stretch of highway, where the speed limit is 55 mph.

 

DRIVER CHARGED IN FATAL CRASH AT FARMERS MARKET: HAWTHORNE, N.J. (AP) — A northern New Jersey man was charged Monday with vehicular homicide for a weekend crash at a farmers market that left one woman dead and two people injured.

James Woetzel of Hawthorne also was charged with leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident that resulted in death. His bail was set at $200,000. It wasn’t immediately known if he had an attorney. Both offenses carry maximum 10-year sentences upon conviction.

The accident happened around 2:20 p.m. Sunday in Hawthorne. Authorities said the 48-year-old Woetzel drove his Dodge Ram pickup truck through a barricade and hit three people, including 58-year-old Hawthorne resident Donna Wine, who was dragged for three blocks.

 

WOMAN ATTACKED AT PARTY FOR TOO-SHORT SHORTS: EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — Prosecutors say a 25-year-old Washington state woman attacked another woman at a barbecue because she thought her shorts were too short.

Papers filed in Snohomish County Superior Court say the woman attending the June 22 party confronted the other woman, telling her that her shorts were too short. Several minutes later the suspect attacked the victim, knocking her to the ground.

The victim suffered broken facial bones and bleeding in the left eye.

 

OTTER THAT ATTACKED SWIMMERS NEAR SEATTLE IS DEAD: SEATTLE (AP) — Authorities have tracked and killed the otter that attacked a boy and his grandmother as they were swimming in a river near Seattle, state wildlife officials said Monday.

Federal officials shot the male otter near the place on the Pilchuck River where the attack took place at the end of July, about 30 miles northeast of Seattle, according to Capt. Alan Myers of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s police force.

Officials said they’re nearly certain they got the right otter because of his unusually aggressive behavior. Otters are more likely to avoid people than to attack them.

The investigation aided by otter experts from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Service was originally focused on female otters, because they suspected a mother protecting her pups may have attacked someone she perceived as coming too close.

 

POLICE: 6 KILLED IN HOUSTON-AREA POLICE CHASE 

LEAGUE CITY, Texas (AP) — A family of four were among six people killed Sunday when a motorist seen driving erratically southeast of Houston fled from police and drove through a stop sign before striking another vehicle, police said.

The police pursuit began Sunday night in nearby Dickinson when a Dodge Durango was seen operating erratically and without its headlights on, according to Dickinson police Capt. Jay Jaekel. Officer Daniel Banda pursued the Durango but had trouble keeping up, Jaekel said. At one point the SUV clipped a vehicle as it sped through an intersection. Shortly after the Durango drove through the stop sign in League City, entered another intersection and struck a Honda Accord.

Jaekel said the pursuit lasted about a minute and a half. A preliminary investigation indicated Banda followed department policy while engaged in the pursuit, Jaekel said Monday.

 

COURT RESURRECTS ARIZONA DEATH-ROW INMATE’S SUIT 

PHOENIX (AP) — An appeals court has resurrected a lawsuit by an Arizona death-row inmate who alleged a prison officer violated his constitutional rights by reading a letter he wrote to his lawyer.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday in prisoner Scott D. Nordstrom’s appeal that the Constitution doesn’t let prison officers read outgoing letters between inmates and their lawyers.

The ruling revives Nordstrom’s legal claims and sends his lawsuit back to a lower court, but it makes no changes to his convictions or death sentence.

Nordstrom, 46, was convicted of killing six people in two robberies in 1996 in Tucson. Two people were killed at a smoke shop in one robbery, while four others were killed during a holdup 14 days later at a social club. Nordstrom was sentenced to death. One of his accomplices was executed last year.

Nordstrom alleged a jail officer read his two-page letter in May 2011, refused his requests to stop viewing it and claimed he had the power to search mail for contraband and scan the contents to ensure they concerned legal matters. The prisoner claimed the experience forced him to stop relaying sensitive information about his case to his lawyer.

The appeals court ruled prison officials can inspect inmates’ outgoing mail in their presence to ensure there are no escape plans, maps of prison yards and other suspicion features. But the court said the Constitution doesn’t let prison officers read outgoing letters between inmates and their lawyers.

 

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