MONTEVALLO, AL. – A former municipal attorney for Montevallo and an ex-mayoral candidate’s hearing has been set for allegations of damaging a pedestrian bridge by trying to burn it. Steven Ralph Sears is scheduled to appear in Shelby County District Court in Columbiana on Oct. 20 for a preliminary hearing concerning a charge of first-degree criminal mischief filed last year. He was arrested in 2013 for allegedly burning Bulldog Bridge near Montevallo Elementary School. According to his warrant, the total damage is valued at $5,500.

WASH., D.C. – On the first day back in session on Oct. 6, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) denied immediate review on five appeals for lower court rulings that struck down their same-sex marriage bans. Indiana, Utah, Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Virginia are now legally required to begin issuing marriage licenses to homosexual couples, bringing the number of states that allow same-sex marriage up to 24. The number is speculated to grow to 30 from SCOTUS’s denial due to more states requesting appeals.

CHICAGO- Mohammed Hamzah Khan, 19, has been charged with one count of attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. Khan was arrested at Chicago’s O’Hare Intl. Airport over the weekend of October 4. In an interview with FBI agents and a letter to his parents, Khan indicated that he did not plan to return and was on his way to join ISIS by purchasing a round-trip ticket from Chicago to Istanbul, Turkey. If tried and sentenced, Khan will face a $250,000 fine and a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

MADRID – A nurse’s assistant in Spain who treated a victim of Ebola in Madrid has tested positive for the disease. The assistant, whose name is currently not known, is the first person known to have contracted Ebola outside of Africa in the current outbreak. The Spanish health minister Ana Mato said the woman was one of about 30 health professionals that treated Spanish priest Manuel Garcia Viejo, who died of the virus on Sept. 25. Some 3,400 people have died in the outbreak – mostly in West Africa.

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