Attorney, others: Ruling expected before Monday
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - An attorney involved in the case over Louisiana's new, restrictive abortion law says a federal judge will rule before Monday on a request that blocks enforcement of the law while a lawsuit seeking to overturn it remains in court.
The law, which requires doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, is scheduled to go into effect Monday.
William Rittenberg, an attorney for several abortion clinics and doctors who sued the state last week, said Friday that U.S. District Judge John deGravelles will rule before then.
The judge heard the case Thursday and said he would issue a ruling Friday but Rittenberg and an attorney for the state said a decision would not be handed down Friday.
DHH: 9 new cases of West Nile virus
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana confirms nine new cases of West Nile virus, bringing this year's total to 61.
The Department of Health and Hospitals on Friday, in its weekly Arbovirus Surveillance Report, says new infections include five neuroinvasive disease cases - all in East Baton Rouge Parish. DHH also reports four new cases of West Nile fever - two in East Baton Rouge and one each in Ascension and Caddo parishes.
Humans contract West Nile when they're bitten by mosquitoes infected with the virus. Dr. Raoult Ratard, the state epidemiologist, is urging residents to protect themselves through use of repellant and other ways. Doing so, he says, can "spare you from getting this disease."
Last year, Louisiana saw 34 of the more serious neuroinvasive cases, down from 2002's high of 204 cases.
Solemn remembrances mark 9th Katrina Anniversary
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Emotional ceremonies, memorials and speeches along the Gulf Coast marked the ninth anniversary of the landfall of Hurricane Katrina,
In New Orleans, Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Julian Castro, the secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, attended a wreath-laying ceremony today where scores of unidentified Katrina victims are entombed.
Many of the more than 1,800 who died were in the New Orleans area, where levee failures contributed to catastrophic flooding.
In Mississippi, memorials included a series of events at the Ground Zero Museum in Waveland.
The storm did billions of dollars' worth of damage in Louisiana and in Mississippi, where coastal homes were wiped out. Memorials in Mississippi included a series of events at the Ground Zero Museum in Waveland.
SENATE-NO PLACE LIKE HOME
Senators, candidates dismiss residency questions
ATLANTA (AP) - Looking for advantages as they battle for Senate control, Republicans and Democrats alike are raising questions about where various senators and candidates say they live.
Democrats question whether congressman and Senate candidate Tom Cotton owns property in Arkansas. Republican Bill Cassidy notes that Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu lives in Washington while claiming her parents' residence in New Orleans as her voting address.
Republican Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas survived a primary challenge after defending himself for listing his official address as a room in a contributor's home. In New Hampshire, the Republican nominee is former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, who moved before launching his latest campaign.
State: Data breach involving JP Morgan Chase
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The state says JP Morgan Chase has notified it of a data breach that could affect those using pre-paid debit cards issued for income tax refunds, unemployment benefits or other payments through the Department of Children and Family Services.
The Department of Revenue said Friday the bank notified the state a day earlier that personally identifiable information it holds under contracts with state agencies may have been breached. JP Morgan Chase said it does not know if or to what extent information on Louisiana citizens may have been exposed.
JP Morgan Chase issues pre-paid debit cards for certain state agencies, including for income tax refunds, unemployment benefits paid by the Louisiana Workforce Commission and Child Support Enforcement and STEP Supportive Services and Child Care Assistance provider payments paid by DCFS.
Age limit on La officials on hold indefinitely
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A state judge has indefinitely blocked enforcement of a new Louisiana law that sought to force incumbent constables and justices of the peace who are 70 or older into retirement.
District Judge Tim Kelley of Baton Rouge replaced a temporary restraining order he issued Aug. 18 with a preliminary injunction, saying the Louisiana Justice of the Peace and Constables Association demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits of a lawsuit the group filed against the state.
The Advocate reports association attorney Domoine Rutledge argued at a Friday hearing that the new law unconstitutionally discriminates on the basis of age. He notes there are no age restrictions for sheriffs or chiefs of police.
William Bryan, an attorney for the state, did not object to Kelley granting a preliminary injunction.
Grand jury indicts 3 in Reserve couple's deaths
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - An Orleans Parish grand jury has indicted three people in the slaying of a Reserve couple who authorities say were bound and dumped into the Intracoastal Waterway in eastern New Orleans in February.
A fourth man was indicted for his alleged role in a botched attempt to cover up the killings.
Along with 38-year-old Horatio Johnson and former state prison guard, 25-year-old Brittany Martin, both of whom previously were booked in the murders, The New Orleans Advocate reports the indictment handed up Thursday also names alleged conspirator, 28-year-old Steven Bradley, in the killings of Lakeitha and Kenneth Joseph.
Until the indictment, Bradley had been booked only with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice in the deaths.
Bond for Johnson, Martin and Bradley was set at $2.5 million.
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