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Gunman kills 3 at town government meeting in Pa.; court says bracelets are not lewd

PENNSYLVANIA
Gunman kills three at town meeting

A gunman blasted shots through the wall of a municipal building during a meeting Monday evening and then barged into the room and continued firing, killing three people before he was tackled by a local official and shot with his own gun, a witness said.

The shooting, in which other people were also wounded, happened during the regular monthly board of supervisors meeting in Ross Township, 85 miles north of Philadelphia. Guy Miller, emergency management director of Monroe County, said the gunman, who appeared to be “shooting randomly,” was in state police custody at a local hospital, which was placed on lockdown.

— Associated Press

Bracelets aren’t lewd, court rules

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that a Pennsylvania school district cannot ban “I [heart] Boobies!” bracelets, rejecting the district’s claim that the slogan — designed to promote breast cancer awareness among young people — is lewd.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit also concluded that school officials did not prove that the bracelets were disruptive.

The ruling is a victory for two Easton Area School District girls who challenged the school rule in 2010 with help from the American Civil Liberties Union. Easton is one of several school districts around the country to ban the bracelets, which are distributed by Keep a Breast Foundation, a nonprofit group in Carlsbad, Calif.

— Associated Press

CALIFORNIA
Two killed, five wounded in shooting

A gunman fired into a crowd during a fight outside a California taco restaurant early Monday, killing two people and wounding five others, police said.

The shooting erupted during a fight between several people that began inside the Tacos Choice restaurant in Salinas, about 100 miles south of San Francisco, and spilled outside into the parking lot, Salinas Police Commander David Shaw said.

The gunman fired into a crowd that had formed around the fight, instantly killing a 22-year-old man and wounding a 28-year-old man who later died at a hospital, Shaw said. Five people were wounded, including a 25-year-old man who was being treated for life-threatening injuries and a 53-year-old woman who was shot multiple times, according to a police report.

Giovanni Pacheco, 21, was arrested hours later in connection with the shooting, police said.

— From news services

LOUISIANA
Homes evacuated following spill

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) has declared a state of emergency around the site of a derailed train that leaked a caustic chemical.

The Union Pacific train derailed Sunday afternoon near Lawtell, 60 miles west of Baton Rouge, forcing the evacuation of about 100 homes.

A company spokeswoman said one railcar was leaking sodium hydroxide, which can cause injuries or even death if it is inhaled or touches the skin. The other was leaking lube oil. But state police said the leaks were contained.

An engineer and a conductor were on the train. Neither was hurt.

A man who was near the derailment is being treated for a burning sensation in his eyes.

— Associated Press

Catholic priest goes on leave following prostitution charge: A high-ranking priest with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston has taken a voluntary leave after being accused of soliciting a prostitute. Authorities said the Rev. Arthur Coyle was granted $500 bail after pleading not guilty Monday in Lowell, Mass., to a count of sexual conduct for a fee. Coyle is the episcopal vicar for the Merrimack Region, meaning he oversees several parishes in the area. Police say Coyle, 62, was arrested Sunday after he was allegedly found with a prostitute behind a Lowell cemetery.

— From news services

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