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Kentucky man going barefoot for charity in icy winter
Written by BY DYLAN LOVAN, Associated Press   
Friday, 21 February 2014 07:46

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Walking a mile in Richard Hudgins shoes can be a painful experience in one of the harshest Southern winters in years.

That's because he's not wearing any.

Hudgins, a hair stylist, has stripped off his shoes and socks and is going barefoot for a full year to raise money for shoeless children a world away.

He has gone barefoot to work, to drop his daughter off at school, to shop and even to exercise at the gym. Shoeless since early December, he has nearly made it through a brutal Kentucky winter that featured several days of snow, ice and single-digit temperatures.

"You really do build a tolerance up," Hudgins said while walking on snow on a recent day near his job near Louisville. "The ice isn't so bad; it's the snow, because the snow gets on the top of my feet."

Hudgins wants to raise $25,000 in donations by year's end and then take the money to Narok, Kenya, where children need uniforms and shoes to go to school. So far he has raised nearly $4,000.

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Ukraine announces deal to end crisis; shots fired
Written by Associated Press   
Friday, 21 February 2014 07:13
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine's presidency said Friday that it has negotiated an international deal intended to end battles between police and protesters that have killed scores and injured hundreds. It was unclear whether the deal would appease protesters, and shots rang out Friday morning in central Kiev.

President Viktor Yanukovych's office said that the government and the opposition had agreed to initial the deal, reached after all-night negotiations with EU diplomats, at noon local time (1000 GMT). That deadline passed without a deal, but an opposition spokeswoman said that opposition leaders will go to the president's office in the afternoon.

European officials cautioned that it's too early to declare a breakthrough in a standoff that has plunged this country into the deadliest violence it has seen since winning independence from the Soviet Union.

The conflict is a battle over the identity of Ukraine, a nation of 46 million that has divided loyalties between Russia and the West. Several regions in the west of the country are in open revolt against the central government, while many in eastern Ukraine back the president and favor strong ties with Russia, their former Soviet ruler.

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Pennsylvania killing suspect's dad: She's a liar
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 20 February 2014 12:33

SUNBURY, Pa. (AP) — The father of a Pennsylvania woman who with her newlywed husband is charged with killing a man she met through Craigslist said he would support his daughter's execution if she is found guilty and even hold the hand of the victim's widow.

Sonny Dean also told The Daily Item newspaper (http://bit.ly/1kZb38H ) on Wednesday that he believes his 19-year-old daughter, Miranda Barbour, may have been involved in one other murder besides the Nov. 11 fatal stabbing of Troy LaFerrara, 42, in Sunbury.

But he cast further doubt on Barbour's claim in a prison interview that she had killed more than 20 other people. Northumberland County District Attorney Tony Rosini said earlier this week that investigators have so far been unable to substantiate her claim.

Police said LaFerrara met Barbour through her Craigslist ad, which offered companionship in exchange for money.

Investigators allege the young woman stabbed LaFerrara, of Port Trevorton, about 20 times in her parked car as her husband, Elytte Barbour, held a cord tight against LaFerrara's neck from the back seat and then dumped his body in an alley.

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Fertilizer plant fire forces Iowa town evacuation
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 20 February 2014 14:17

NORTHWOOD, Iowa (AP) — Authorities ordered the evacuation of an entire northern Iowa city Thursday as firefighters battled a fire at a fertilizer plant.

Iowa State Patrol spokesman Scott Bright said the fertilizer used for crop dusting contains sulfuric acid, and that the evacuation is necessary to prevent residents from breathing in that chemical.

"We're in the process of evacuating the town. We're trying to get everybody out of the town and moving them to the Kensett Community Center about six miles south of Northwood," he said. "The number one concern is to get everybody out of the town until the fire is put out."

The fire broke out Thursday morning at the plant at Northwood Municipal Airport, about a mile east of the city.

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Bill to expand spanking dies in Kansas House
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 20 February 2014 12:32

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A bill that would have eased some restrictions on spanking will not get a hearing by a Kansas House committee.

Rep. John Rubin's office said Wednesday that the House Corrections and Juvenile Justice Committee will not consider the bill. Rubin is the committee's chairman.

The bill, introduced by Rep. Gail Finney, a Democrat from Wichita, spelled out the types of corporal punishment that were allowed in the state. It would have let parents, teachers and other caregivers to hit children hard enough to leave marks or bruising.

The Wichita Eagle reports (http://bit.ly/1fCeOtp ) Finney says on her website that she introduced the bill as a guideline for parents, law enforcement, court officials and others, and to protect children. She says current state law, which allows some spanking, is not clear.

___

Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com


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