Manning is seeking presidential pardon

Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning is seeking a presidential pardon for sending reams of classified information to WikiLeaks, a leak she says was done “out of a love for my country and sense of duty to others,” according to documents released Wednesday.

Manning’s attorney, David Coombs, sent the Petition for Pardon/Commutation of Sentence on Tuesday to President Obama through the U.S. Justice Department and to Army Secretary John M. McHugh.

The White House said last month that a Manning request for a presidential pardon would be considered like any other.

Manning, formerly Bradley Manning, is serving a 35-year sentence at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., for her conviction July 30 on 20 counts for disclosing the information while working as an intelligence analyst in Iraq in 2010. Manning has said she wants to live as a woman and receive hormone therapy for gender dysphoria — the sense that she is physically the wrong gender.

— Associated Press

Rare brain disease could have spread

New Hampshire public health officials think that one person died of a rare degenerative brain disease and that there’s a remote chance up to 13 others in multiple states were exposed to it through surgical equipment.

Joseph Pepe, president of Catholic Medical Center, said officials are 95 percent certain a patient who had brain surgery in May and died last month had Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.

Officials have notified eight people who had brain surgery during that period, because the faulty proteins that cause the disease can survive standard sterilization. The disease has been transmitted that way only four times, never in the United States.

Some of the surgical instruments had been rented, and officials say up to five patients in other states could have been exposed. The equipment has been quarantined.

— Associated Press

Eighth county clears path to gay marriage

A northern New Mexico county became the eighth in the state Wednesday to clear the way for same-sex couples to be married.

The Los Alamos County clerk’s office issued a marriage license to a lesbian couple shortly after a state district judge upheld a decision requiring that to happen.

Janet Newton and Maria Thibodeau were denied a license last week and filed a lawsuit that led to a ruling by District Court Judge Sheri Raphaelson that same-sex couples are entitled to be married in New Mexico.

Before Wednesday’s decision, six of the state’s 33 counties were issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and a seventh has announced plans to start granting licenses next week.

— Associated Press

Student dies in school stabbing: One student, 17, was killed and three others injured in what police said may have been a gang-related stabbing early Wednesday at a suburban high school north of Houston. Three other students considered “persons of interest” were detained for questioning after the melee at Spring High School, Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia said.

— Reuters