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Three Big Things

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  • Mobile Public Safety Director pushes tougher stolen gun punishment

    Mobile, Ala. (WKRG) -- Mobile's Public Safety Director is heading to the state capital today to push for stricter punishment for criminals found with a stolen gun.  James Barber speaks at a state Senate hearing today.  

    Mobile Police have been looking for solutions to gun crimes in Mobile.  Officials from Mobile hope making possession of stolen firearm a class C felony will help.  

    Barber will be speaking in front of the Alabama Senate Judiciary committee today along with Mobile's Police chief and other members of law enforcement around the state.  

    In February Mobile released a public service announcement that's been on heavy rotation called "Lock it Up."  The campaign reminds gun owners to lock their cars to help keep guns secure.  News 5 investigated the issue of stolen guns and the trend of stolen guns being used to commit new crimes.  According to a news release: "Barber believes the problem must be addressed, but his position is set on punishment for the criminal who law enforcement officers find in possession of a stolen firearm. "

    Barber also fired back at a proposal from Mobile City Councilman CJ Small that could potentially punish gun owners who have their firearms stolen.  Barber argues the focus should be on the criminals and not "an otherwise law-abiding citizen simply because they forgot to lock their vehicle."


  • Officer injured, suspect killed in Prichard chase identified

    (WKRG) - Mobile police are investigating after a person was hit by a car and killed on Butler Street in the Trinity Gardens neighborhood.

    The crash happened around 12:20 a.m. at the intersection near Berkley Street.

    UPDATE (6:42 a.m.) A Prichard police officer was injured in the incident, News 5 has confirmed.

    The officer was rushed to University Hospital.

    Lt. Robert Martin of the Prichard Police Department would not say how the officer was hurt, only saying "no shots were fired." The officer is expected to be ok.

    The Mobile County Sheriff's Office is handling the investigation, according to Lt. Martin.

    UPDATE (8:29 p.m.) Prichard Police released a statement Tuesday evening: 

    "In a collective investigative effort, Prichard PD, MCSO, & MPD Traffic Division, are working towards getting answers to an ongoing investigation involving an accident where a Prichard officer was struck by another officer’s patrol vehicle while attempting to assist in the apprehension of a fleeing suspect. The fleeing suspect was subsequently killed in this incident, due to being struck by the patrol vehicle in the same manner as the officer.  Because this is an officer related incident involving injuries and the fatality of another individual, investigators want to be sure that they conduct a thorough investigation to ensure that everything is handled properly.

    Although it is regretful that an individual lost their life in the outcome of this incident, we would like to extend our deepest sympathy to both families during this sorrowful and trying time. This may prove to be a lengthy investigation, so we do ask that the family of the decedent be patient with us as we seek to work diligently to bring closure to this investigation.


  • Man or cyborg? ‘Jeopardy!’ champ passes $1 million mark

    NEW YORK (AP) — There’s no truth to the rumor that James Holzhauer is a cyborg created to be the perfect “Jeopardy!” contestant.

    But given how he’s made a level of excellence rarely seen on the television quiz show appear almost mundane, it sometimes seems that way. Holzhauer eclipsed the $1 million mark in winnings Tuesday on his 14th appearance. Not only has he won $131,127 to shatter the program’s previous one-day record of $77,000, he already has the top five one-day scores in the history of a game that has aired regularly since 1984.

    The professional gambler from Las Vegas is quick on his feet and quick with the buzzer, displays an extraordinary breadth of knowledge and — true to his profession — is cold-blooded in his willingness to risk big sums of money.

    The show’s most hallowed records, set in 2004 when Ken Jennings won 74 games in a row and earned more than $2.5 million, seem like a plausible goal.

    “James is just a perfect ‘Jeopardy!’ machine,” Jennings told The Associated Press this week.

    Like most of the game’s best players, he did his share of studying in advance, finding that books geared to young people were a good way to learn about unfamiliar topics. He built a replica of the show’s buzzer and practiced while playing along on TV, standing in his living room like he has to do now in front of a podium. Holzhauer says he rarely guesses — he doesn’t like those odds — but seems never to have forgotten a fact.

    “My goal was just to be less nervous than the other players,” he said. “Whenever I felt overwhelmed, I snapped my fingers three times and pictured a fun snow festival with my daughter.”


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