Rangers place Jeremy Jeffress on 10-day DL; purchase contract of Preston Claiborne

ARLINGTON, Texas — The Texas Rangers today announced that the club has placed right-handed pitcher Jeremy Jeffress on the 10-day disabled list, retroactive to June 21, with a strained lower back muscle.  The club has also purchased the contract of right-handed pitcher Preston Claiborne (#57) from Triple-A Round Rock.  To make room on the 40-man roster for Claiborne, the team has designated right-handed pitcher Eddie Gamboa for assignment.

Jeffress has gone 1-2 with a 5.46 ERA (18 ER/29.2 IP) in 31 relief appearances for Texas this season, tied for the club lead in games pitched.  He last appeared on Tuesday vs. Toronto, and the first date he would be eligible to be activated is July 1.

Claiborne, 29, will be available in the bullpen for today’s homestand finale against Toronto, seeking his Texas debut and first major league action since 2014.  He has gone 2-0 with a 1.37 ERA (4 ER/26.1 IP) and 31 strikeouts over 26 relief appearances with Round Rock this season, converting 13 of 14 save chances, tied for the most saves in the Pacific Coast League.  He signed a minor league contract with Texas on February 3 and spent the majority of the spring in minor league camp.  He also appeared in 7 Cactus League games for the Rangers this spring, going 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA (2 ER/4.0 IP).

Claiborne went 3-2 with a 3.79 ERA (30 ER/71.1 IP) over 62 major league appearances with the New York Yankees in 2013-14.  He last appeared in a major league game on September 27, 2014 at Boston.  The Dallas native graduated from Carrollton Newman Smith High School in 2006 and pitched for Tulane University prior to his selection in the 17th round of the 2010 June draft by the Yankees.

The Rangers have seven days to trade, release, or outright Gamboa to the minor leagues.  He was acquired in a February 14 trade with Tampa Bay.  He has spent the year with Round Rock, posting a 5-6 record with a 6.49 ERA (56 ER/77.2 IP) in 14 games/starts.

After today’s transactions, the Rangers remain at the 40-man limit on the club’s major league roster, along with five players on the 60-day disabled list.

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott holds youth football camp in hometown

HAUGHTON, Louisiana — Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowl quarterback Dak Prescott held his first ever Adidas Dak Prescott Pro Camp at Harold E. Harland Field Thursday.

“It’s great,” the Haughton High School alumnus said of the turnout of nearly 750 kids grades first through eighth. “It’s where it all started. Being in that gym earlier today just kind of gets me the chills. It was kind of like a pep rally just seeing all the people, seeing all the cheerleaders. But it’s special, special to be here. I was one of these kids not too long ago. So to be in this position and have this platform and be able to come back and give them a camp, change some lives, and make some things better is great.”

Prescott’s association with Pro Camps, a sports marketing firm that has been putting on camps with various pro sports players for almost two decades, was not encouraged by teammate Jason Witten, who recently completed his ninth annual Citi Jason Witten Pro Camp. Nonetheless, the 23-year-old sees why a player who considers a mentor has stuck with the group.

“He’s definitely a guy that, as I said, I admire as a mentor, a guy that does everything the right way,” Prescott explained. “And he’s been with ProCamps for years. And that just shows not only to Witten but ProCamps as well the type of people that we’re dealing with.”

In coming back to Haughton, the talented signal caller, who was recently named the 14th-best player in the NFL according to his peers and NFL Network, drives by his former residence at Pine Tree Mobile Estates.

“It’s humbling,” said Prescott. “It just shows you where I came from, kind of reminds me of everything it took to get where I am. But it makes me thankful for what I have.”

Dallas Cowboys fans ranked the best in the NFL

FRISCO — The Dallas Cowboys fans are the best in the NFL according to a study by Michael Lewis at Emory University.

The top five fan bases (team brands if you prefer) are the Cowboys, Patriots, Eagles, Giants and Steelers.  The Cowboys excel on all the metrics.  They win in terms of Fan Equity (a revenue premium measure of brand strength), Road Equity and finish second in social media.  The underlying data (I will spare everybody the statistical models) reveals why Dallas does so well.  The Cowboy’s average home attendance (reported by ESPN) is more than 10,000 higher than the next team.  The Cowboys average ticket price is also well above average and they have the second most Twitter followers after the Patriots.  The other thing to note is that the Cowboys achieve these year in and year out , even in years when the team is not great.  

The Cowboys lead the league in Lewis’ studies according to fan equity (home revenues relative to expected revenues based on team performance and market characteristics), social media equity (how many fans are online about the team), and road equity (how many fans show up for road games).

Lewis’ bottom-five franchises were Kansas City, the Los Angeles Rams, Tennessee, Jacksonville, and Cincinnati.

The Chiefs are the tough one on this list.  The Chiefs fill their stadium but at relatively low price.  Keep in mind that the analysis includes factors such as population and median income.  In addition, Kansas City was ranked 29th in terms of Road Attendance last year and the social media following (Twitter) is middle of the road.  The fundamental issue is that that the Chiefs produce these below average fan-based results while performing well above average on the field.

Lewis findings reinforce, at least for 2017, that the Cowboys still are America’s Team.

TROPICAL WEATHER

Long stretch of Gulf Coast eyes Tropical Storm Cindy

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Residents and officials along a stretch of the Gulf Coast from the Florida panhandle to eastern Texas are keeping an eye on Tropical Storm Cindy.

The storm formed Tuesday in the Gulf of Mexico. It’s expected to move slowly toward the Louisiana-Texas line. But the heaviest rain bands were to the east. And the National Weather Service says it poses a threat of dangerous flash flooding.

Forecasters say some areas of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida could see a foot of rain.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey issued a state of emergency Tuesday because of the threat of torrential dangerous high tides and rip currents. Other state and local officials along the coast were mulling similar declarations.

 

CONGRESSMAN SHOT

FBI to detail findings on Congressional baseball shooting

WASHINGTON (AP) — The FBI and other law enforcement officials are planning to detail what happened when a gunman shot a top House Republican and four other people on a northern Virginia baseball field.

Leaders of the FBI’s Washington field office will discuss their investigative findings at a news conference Wednesday.

Rep. Steve Scalise, the House majority whip, was gravely wounded in the shooting last week. He has undergone several surgeries and remains hospitalized. His condition has been upgraded to serious.

Scalise and other congressional Republicans were practicing for their annual charity baseball game against Democrats when a gunman started shooting. U.S. Capitol Police and other officers returned fire and killed the gunman, who turned out to be an unemployed home inspector with a deep animus toward President Donald Trump and other Republicans.

 

ST MARTINVILLE POLICE CHIEF

St. Martinville appoints interim police chief

(Information from: The Daily Iberian, http://www.iberianet.com)

ST. MARTINVILLE, La. (AP) — St. Martinville has appointed an interim police chief, but not without a lot of acrimony.

The Daily Iberian reports the City Council appointed Joseph Nedie to the position until it could be advertised for someone to fill the role permanently.

Nedie replaces Calder Hebert, whose resignation was effective Tuesday.

The motion itself would have passed in less than a minute Monday, but after it was seconded several in the audience yelled several questions, prompting a back-and-forth discussion between Mayor Thomas Nelson, Councilman Mike Fuselier, City Attorney Allen Durand and those in attendance.

Finally, Nelson moved to have a final vote but was cut off again by another audience member.

The final vote was three votes for the appointment and one abstention from recently sworn in Councilman Edmond Joseph.

 

WEBSTER SCHOOLS

Rowland named Webster Parish schools superintendent

(Information from: KTBS-TV, http://ktbs.com)

MINDEN, La. (AP) — A product of the Webster Parish School System has been tapped as its leader.

KTBS-TV reports the School Board voted unanimously Monday to Johnny Rowland Jr. as the new superintendent of schools. He replaces Dan Rawls, who retired in April.

Rowland, a graduate of Webster Parish High School, was one of two vying for the position until Monday when the board learned the other candidate, Byron Lyons, of Cleveland, Ohio, had withdrawn his name.

Still, Rowland, who’s served as interim superintendent since Rawls’ sudden departure, had to go through a question-and-answer session with the board prior to the vote.

Rowland’s most recent position was personnel and middle school supervisor. He’s also held roles as principal, coach and teacher over his 25-year education career.

 

DOUBLE HOMICIDE

Victims in Louisiana double homicide identified

(Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://www.nola.com)

COVINGTON, La. (AP) — The victims of a double homicide in Louisiana’s St. Tammany Parish have been identified.

NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune reports authorities say 34-year-old Donald Gros, of Marrero, and his girlfriend, 32-year-old Jennifer Magee, of Pearl River, were killed Monday at a home in the Pearl River area. Autopsies were conducted Tuesday. Results are being withheld by St. Tammany Parish Coroner Dr. Charles Preston at the request of the sheriff’s investigators.

The sheriff’s office is seeking the public’s help in locating Jason Magee III who is wanted on two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths. The suspect is Jennifer Magee’s ex-husband, who is considered armed and dangerous, although the sheriff’s office said the killings are likely domestic in nature.

 

SENATE-FEMA DIRECTOR

Senate confirms Trump’s nominee to head FEMA

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has confirmed the nomination of President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The vote was 95-4 on Tuesday for Brock Long. He previously ran Alabama’s Emergency Management Agency and served as that state’s on-scene incident commander during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

Long takes over the agency at the beginning of hurricane season. The agency has already managed 41 disaster declarations this year and the Trump administration has proposed cutting nearly $1 billion from the agency’s budget.

More than $500 million in proposed cuts would come from FEMA’s grant programs, including the grants for pre-disaster mitigation efforts.

 

CHILD CARE AID

Increased demand to cause wait for Louisiana child care aid

(Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com)

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — After adding 7,000 children to the rolls, Louisiana is reaching its limit in a key child care aid program and will start a waiting list next month.

The Advocate reports families that apply between now and July 1 can get in without a wait. After that, state officials said Monday the new applicants will head to the waiting list.

The federally-funded Child Care Assistance Program helps pay the cost of child care while their low-income parents are at work, school or in job training. Children receiving the aid can be as old as 12, but most are from birth to five years old.

The Louisiana Department of Education has made changes to bump up use of the program, boosting rolls to 18,000 and growing. Other states have similar waiting lists.

 

DEAD ZONE FORECAST

Scientists forecast Gulf dead zone the size of New Jersey

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Federal scientists say this summer could see the third-largest dead zone ever recorded in the Gulf of Mexico: a New Jersey-sized area with too little oxygen to support marine life.

Over 32 years, those hypoxic zones have averaged 5,300 square miles (13,700 sq. kilometers), about the size of Connecticut. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said in a news release Tuesday that this summer’s could be nearly 8,200 square miles (21,200 sq. kilometers).

The main reason is that much more water than usual flowed through streams and rivers, and it carried more nutrients than normal. The nutrients feed plankton blooms that die and sink to the bottom, where their decay uses oxygen.

A study this year found that nonlethal low oxygen levels may slow shrimp growth, making large shrimp more expensive.

Jerry Jones has audience with Pope Francis; pontiff blesses entire NFL, Hall of Fame

VATICAN CITY — Dallas Cowboys owner, president, and general manager Jerry Jones joined the rest of the 2017 Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2017 for a private audience with Pope Francis on Wednesday.

“What a magnificent day for the Hall of Fame and to have met Pope Francis and had him to have a recognition of what football, what pro football is, the ethos behind it,” said Jones. “It’s just a magical day.”

According to Gene Jones, Jerry’s wife, Pope Francis blessed the entire NFL and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Cowboys Hall-of-Famers have been touring the world’s holiest regions recently. On June 16, Roger Staubach joined New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and a group of 18 Hall-of-Famers to visit Israel.

It would have been noteworthy if Staubach were a part of the Vatican Hall of Fame group, as the man who threw the “Hail Mary” pass and a devoted Catholic would have been in his religion’s capital.

Blue Jays fail to reach .500 again with loss to Rangers

ARLINGTON, Texas — Carlos Gomez homered in a four-run first inning, Nick Martinez allowed two hits while taking a shutout into the seventh and the Texas Rangers beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-1 on Tuesday night.

Adrian Beltre had a solo homer in the eighth for his 2,960th career hit as the Rangers (35-35) got back to .500 while the Blue Jays (34-36) dropped to 0-8 this season when trying to reach the break-even mark for the first time.

Toronto beat two-time defending AL West champion Texas in a Division Series each of the past two seasons, as the AL East winner in 2015 and as a wild-card last year.

Delino DeShields led off for the Rangers with a bunt single and scored on an RBI groundout by Beltre before Gomez’s seventh homer and run-scoring hits from Jonathan Lucroy and Mike Napoli.

Martinez (2-3) didn’t allow more than one baserunner in any inning, giving up one run and striking out two in 6 1/3 innings for the right-hander’s first win since May 19 at Detroit.

Nomar Mazara homered for the second straight game, getting his 10th leading off the fifth. It was his fourth straight homer on the first pitch.

Francisco Liriano (3-3) gave up four straight two-out hits in the first, which ended when Napoli was thrown out at second trying to stretch his RBI single. The left-hander allowed seven hits and five runs in 4 2/3 innings.

With Toronto trailing 5-0 in the seventh, Steve Pearce barely missed a grand slam with a drive just outside the left field foul pole after Martinez walked his final batter and Jose Leclerc walked his first two.

Ryan Goins ended the shutout with an RBI single before Leclerc struck out Kevin Pillar as the potential tying run.

Keone Kela pitched a scoreless ninth a night after closer Matt Bush gave up two ninth-inning runs in the Blue Jays’ 7-6 win.

 

TRAINER’S ROOM

Blue Jays: RHP Leonel Campos left the game with a right groin strain in the sixth. The reliever retired both hitters he faced a day after getting called up from Triple-A Buffalo when Joe Smith went on the DL with a sore right shoulder.

Rangers: INF Hanser Alberto had rotator cuff surgery Monday. He’s expected to miss the rest of the season.

 

UP NEXT

Blue Jays: RHP Joe Biagini (1-6, 4.26) has a five-game losing streak, including his past four starts. It will be Biagini’s ninth start after spending the first month in the bullpen.

Rangers: RHP Tyson Ross (1-0, 3.18) makes his second start since returning from off-season surgery to relieve thoracic outlet syndrome. He gave up two runs with five strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings in a 10-4 victory over Seattle in his Texas debut.

AP News: June 20, 2017

TROPICAL WEATHER

Tropical storm warning issued for Louisiana’s Gulf Coast

MIAMI (AP) — A tropical storm warning has been issued for a section of Louisiana’s coast as a weather system approaches from the Gulf of Mexico.

The warning is in effect from Cameron, Louisiana, to Intracoastal City.

The system’s maximum sustained winds early Tuesday are near 40 mph (64 kph). The U.S. National Hurricane Center says some slight strengthening is possible before the system reaches the coast, either late Wednesday or Wednesday night.

As of 5 a.m. Tuesday, the system is centered about 305 miles (490 kilometers) south-southwest of the mouth of the Mississippi River and is moving northwest near 8 mph (13 kph).

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Bret is moving along South America’s northern coast. Its maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph (64 kph) with weakening expected to begin later in the day.

 

CONFEDERATE STATUES-MAYOR’S REQUEST-THE LATEST

The Latest: New Orleans responding to Alabama mayor

(Information from: The Cullman Times, http://www.cullmantimes.com)

HANCEVILLE, Ala. (AP) — The mayor’s office in New Orleans says it is preparing a response to the request that it turn over recently removed Confederate-related monuments to a city in Alabama.

Hanceville Alabama Mayor Kenneth Nail recently wrote to New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to request a donation of the monuments for display in Hanceville’s Veterans Memorial Park.

In a statement Monday, the mayor’s office said it is working on a request for proposals from nonprofits and government agencies that will place the monuments in what New Orleans officials deem to be a more appropriate place than the high-profile spots they once occupied.

Landrieu proposed their removal after the 2015 slayings of nine black parishioners in South Carolina.

BAN THE BOX-COLLEGES

Louisiana will partially ‘ban the box’ for college admission

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana’s public colleges and universities will only have limited authority to ask applying students about their criminal histories to determine admission.

Gov. John Bel Edwards’ office said Monday the governor has signed into law the “ban the box” legislation sponsored by Rep. Vincent Pierre, a Lafayette Democrat.

The legislation contains exceptions.

Schools still can ask about convictions for stalking, rape and sexual battery during the admissions process. If a potential student is denied admission because of such a conviction, the applicant can appeal the rejection.

After granting admission, colleges also will be able to ask about criminal convictions for a variety of reasons, including to determine if they’ll limit participation in campus programs, financial aid and housing.

The new law takes effect Aug. 1.

 

House Bill 688: www.legis.la.gov

 

BABY INSIDE STOLEN CAR

Police accuse 2 teen boys of stealing car with baby inside

(Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://www.nola.com)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans police say two teens have been booked after they stole a vehicle with a baby inside.

NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune reports the boys, ages 13 and 14, were booked with auto theft after police say they stole a vehicle Saturday night that was left running with a baby inside. Police spokeswoman Dawne Massey says the baby was found unharmed a few blocks away from where the car was stolen.

Police say officers responded to the theft around 9:15 p.m. Massey says it was classified as an auto theft rather than a carjacking because the driver was not inside at the time and left it running.

A man who identified himself as the baby’s grandfather says the vehicle was stolen outside a beauty store while the baby’s mother had gone inside.

 

BAIL BONDS LAWSUIT

Civil rights group’s lawsuit targets bail bond companies

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A civil rights group has filed a federal lawsuit against a New Orleans bail bond company and related businesses, alleging they violated federal lending and racketeering laws by charging hidden and illegal fees.

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s lawsuit also claims the defendants resorted to kidnapping and extortion, although there’s no indication any of the defendants have faced criminal charges in connection with the allegations.

Officials with Blair’s Bail Bonds did not respond Monday to a telephoned request for comment.

The class action lawsuit was filed late Friday. It focuses on a client named Ronald Egana. It says he and his loved ones were charged various illegal fees in connection with his bond. It also says the defendants sent a bounty hunter to kidnap Egana to extort money from him.

 

CELL PHONE TAX

Louisiana cellphone tax for deaf services signed into law

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana cellphone bills will be edging up later this year.

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Monday that he has signed into law a bill enacting a new 4.5-cent monthly tax on cellphones.

The dollars will pay for technology assistance and services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Current law imposes a 5-cent monthly tax on landline phones, with the money deposited into the Telecommunications for the Deaf Fund. The bill will drop that rate to 4.5 cents a month but expand the tax to wireless services.

The tax change by Rep. Patricia Smith, a Baton Rouge Democrat, takes effect Oct. 1.

The new tax will raise an estimated $4.7 million annually.

 

House Bill 582: www.legis.la.gov

 

 

UPSKIRT VIDEOS

Man arrested for trying to take up-skirt video at church

(Information from: WAFB-TV, http://wafb.com)

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A man who authorities say attempted to record video under women’s dresses at a Louisiana church has been arrested.

WAFB-TV reports 40-year-old Blake Williamson was arrested after a victim reported him twice, on June 11 and June 18. The victim told police Williamson used a camera attached to a briefcase to try to record video under her skirt, and said that he had attempted to do so several times over the last two months.

A probable cause report submitted by the Baton Rouge Police Department says a witness recorded an attempt. The report says that Williamson told police upon arrest that he had been using the briefcase camera since May.

He has been charged with video voyeurism. It’s unclear if he has a lawyer.

 

CWS-OREGON ST-LSU

Beavers’ streak at 23; Harrison slam fuels 13-1 win over LSU

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Bryce Fehmel limited LSU to two hits in eight innings, KJ Harrison hit the first College World Series grand slam at TD Ameritrade Park, and Oregon State beat LSU 13-1 for its 23rd straight win Monday night.

The top-seeded Beavers (56-4), who matched the school-record win streak they set earlier this season, took control of Bracket 1. They don’t play again until Friday, and need one more win to advance to next week’s best-of-three finals.

LSU (49-18) had its 17-game win streak end with its most lopsided CWS loss since a 20-6 throttling by Cal State Fullerton in 1994. The Tigers face elimination when they play Florida State on Wednesday.

Starter Eric Walker (8-2) left the game in the third inning because of forearm tightness. Caleb Gilbert held the Beavers for a couple of innings, but they capitalized on a couple of LSU misplays to go up 3-0 in the fifth.

Harrison’s slam made it 8-0 in the sixth.

Fehmel (6-2) wiggled out of a mini jam in the fifth before Zach Watson’s homer in the seventh allowed LSU to avoid getting shut out for the first time in its 62 CWS games.

Rangers buy out Scheppers; option Hoying, place Griffin on 60-day DL

ARLINGTON, Texas — The Texas Rangers today announced that the club has purchased the contract of right-handed pitcher Tanner Scheppers (#52) from Triple-A Round Rock and optioned outfielder Jared Hoying to Round Rock.  To make room on the 40-man roster for Scheppers, the team has also transferred right-handed pitcher A.J. Griffin from the 10-day to the 60-day disabled list.

Scheppers, 30, will be available in the bullpen for tonight’s series opener against Toronto, seeking his first major league action since an outing on October 2, 2016 vs. Tampa Bay.  He opened the season on the Rangers 10-day disabled list from March 30-April 14 with left abdominal discomfort, including an injury rehabilitation assignment from April 9-14 with Round Rock.  He was assigned outright to Round Rock on April 15.  Scheppers has posted a 0-1 record with one save and a 4.64 ERA (11 ER/21.1 IP) in 16 relief appearances overall for the Express in 2017, including a 0.87 ERA (1 ER/10.1 IP) over his last 7 outings at Triple-A beginning May 27.  He also went 1-0 with a 3.52 ERA (4 ER/7.2 IP) in 6 outings for the Rangers this spring.

Scheppers has a career major league record of 12-6 with a 4.17 ERA in 175 games/4 starts with Texas since 2012.  He made just 10 relief appearances for the Rangers last September after spending most of the 2016 season returning from microfracture surgery on his left knee in February 2016.

Hoying optioned to Triple-A Round Rock

Hoying appeared in 24 of the Rangers’ 26 games after being recalled on May 16, making 16 starts in center field.  He has batted .210 with one home run and 6 RBI for Texas this season, and spent the balance of the campaign at Round Rock.

 

Griffin moves from 10-day to 60-day disabled list

Griffin has been on the disabled list since May 27 with a left intercostal muscle strain suffered in his most recent start on May 26 at Toronto.  He has gone 4-2 with a 5.77 ERA in 8 games/starts for Texas this season.  The first date he would be eligible to return is July 26.

The Rangers remain at the 40-man limit on the club’s major league roster, along with five players on the 60-day disabled list.

AP News: June 19, 2017

CONGRESSMAN SHOT-FATHER’S DAY

Wounded congressman sends Father’s Day message

WASHINGTON (AP) — The congressman grievously wounded when a gunman opened fire at a Republican baseball practice is delivering a Father’s Day message through his Twitter account.

The message from congressman Steve Scalise of Louisiana on Sunday says: “Steve’s greatest joy is being a father to Madison and Harrison, and a husband to Jennifer. This Father’s Day has special meaning for the Scalise Family, and they send their best wishes to every family, especially the dads. Take the time to be close to the ones you love.”

The message thanks the many people for their prayers, support and outpouring of love. It includes photos of Scalise and his family.

The House majority whip remains in serious condition at Medstar Washington Hospital Center. He has undergone several surgeries since Wednesday’s shooting.

 

CHILD EXPLOITATION CRACKDOWN

51 Louisianans arrested on child exploitation charges

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana law enforcement officials say they arrested 51 people on child exploitation charges this spring as part of an annual nationwide crackdown.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced the results of Operation Broken Heart IV during a news conference Friday.

Landry says the charges range from possessing child pornography to solicitation of minors. He says one of the suspects, a New Orleans man, had more than 100,000 images of child pornography stored on a device.

Officials say there were more than 1,000 arrests made across the country as part of the operation, which was conducted in April and May. More than 150 Louisiana law enforcement agencies participated in the initiative.

 

MEN EVACUATED

US Coast Guard evacuates 2 men in need of medical aid

(Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://www.nola.com)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The U.S. Coast Guard has medevaced two men it rescued off coasts of Texas and Louisiana.

The Times-Picayune reports that the Coast Guard says a 62-year-old and 44-year-old were rescued in two separate incidents on Saturday and Sunday.

The Coast Guard says the older man was on a fishing vessel 12 miles (19.3 kilometers) south of Grand Isle on Saturday when a 45-foot response boat crew arrived on-scene around 6:30 p.m. He suffered from prolonged flu-like symptoms and is in stable condition at a Galliano hospital.

Authorities say that at 7:50 a.m. on Sunday, a Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter hoisted the younger man off a 60-foot tank ship 120 miles (193.1 kilometers) southeast of Galveston. He is hospitalized in stable condition after experiencing stroke-like symptoms.

 

FATAL CRASH

Louisiana police ID man as victim in fatal motorcycle crash

(Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://www.nola.com)

INDEPENDENCE, La. (AP) — Louisiana authorities say they have identified the victim of a fatal motorcycle crash.

The Times-Picayune reports Loranger resident 32-year-old Geza Ray Kovach Jr. was killed early Saturday morning after a tire on his 2005 Kawasaki motorcycle “failed.”

State police say the motorcycle was traveling north on Interstate 55 near Independence and that two other vehicles were involved in the crash.

Police say after the initial fall Kovach was hit by a 2012 Kia driven by a 36-year-old Mississippi woman, while the bike was struck by a 1978 Chevrolet Monte Carlo driven by a 52-year-old Mississippi resident.

Nobody else was injured.

Authorities say investigators don’t suspect impairment was a “contributing factor” but “as part of the ongoing investigation, blood samples were obtained” for analyzing at the state police crime lab.

 

TRI-PARENTING

Modern family: More courts allowing 3 parents of 1 child

NEW YORK (AP) — Courts or legislatures in at least a dozen states have declared that some children have three parents. It’s an arrangement sometimes called “tri-parenting.”

While the cases are rare, they have appeared in states from Florida to Alaska.

Advocates say legal recognition reflects the realities of some families.

They include gay couples having a child with a friend, and a man seeking to remain in a paternal role after DNA shows someone else fathered the child he’s raising. New York’s first “tri-custody” ruling involved a husband, his wife and a female neighbor who had all become romantic partners and set out as three to have a child.

But some courts and experts have raised qualms that more parents could mean more parents could mean more conflict.

 

CONGRESSMAN SHOT-THE LATEST

The Latest: Scalise on the mend, now in ‘serious’ condition

WASHINGTON (AP) — Louisiana congressman Steve Scalise has been upgraded from “critical” to “serious condition.”

Scalise continues to show signs of improvement after he was wounded in a shooting at a Republican baseball practice outside Washington.

Medstar Washington Hospital Center released the update Saturday on behalf of the Scalise family. The congressman underwent another surgery Saturday, and the hospital says he is more responsive and speaking with family.

Scalise was one of five people shot when a gunman opened fire Wednesday as the Republican team practiced in Alexandria, Virginia. He has required surgery several times since the shooting.

 

HIGH SCHOOL EXPANSION

Expanded high school on track for new academic year

BOSSIER CITY, La. (AP) — A crowded high school in Louisiana is expanding to hold about 2,000 students.

The Shreveport Times reports renovation at Airline High School should be finished in August. It is the largest high school in Bossier Parish, in the northwestern corner of the state.

Demolition crews are knocking down the last two-story classroom wing. It’s the final step in a project that included construction of two new three-story classroom wings.

The renovation budget is about $23.4 million.

 

MEDICAL MARIJUANA

Contractor chosen for Louisiana medical marijuana production

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Medical marijuana in Louisiana is moving closer to production, with a contractor for the growing operation chosen by Louisiana State University.

The LSU AgCenter has selected a New Orleans affiliate of a Las Vegas company to do the work. GB Sciences was chosen from seven potential vendors.

A contract awaits consideration by the university governing board on Thursday.

Louisiana lawmakers agreed to a framework for dispensing medical marijuana in 2015.

The law will eventually get medicinal-grade marijuana to people with cancer, a severe form of cerebral palsy, seizure disorders, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy and other diseases. Eligible patients are expected to have access to the drug next year.

Southern University is Louisiana’s other authorized medical marijuana grower, and also remains in the planning stages.

Seminoles’ meltdown in field helps LSU post 5-4 win in CWS

 drove in the go-ahead run during a wild eighth inning and LSU won its 17th straight game with a 5-4 victory over Florida State in the College World Series on Saturday night.

Jared Poche’ (11-3) worked 2 2/3 shutout innings in a rare relief appearance, and the Tigers (49-17) advanced to a Bracket 1 winners’ game against Oregon State on Monday night. The Seminoles (45-22) will play an elimination game against Cal State Fullerton in the afternoon.

LSU was down 4-3 against FSU starter Tyler Holton (10-3) when a bizarre sequence turned the game in the eighth. Cole Freeman reached on a base hit and Antoine Duplantis singled to right. Three errors on the play allowed Freeman to score, and Deichmann singled against reliever Alec Byrd for the lead.

Zack Hess ended the game with a strikeout of Dylan Busby, who had homered and driven in three runs.

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