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National briefs from Tribune news services

Published May 21, 2013 9:23 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Court strikes down Arizona's 20-week abortion ban

San Francisco • A federal court in San Francisco on Tuesday struck down Arizona's ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the law violates a string of U.S. Supreme Court rulings starting with Roe v. Wade that guarantees a woman's right to an abortion before a fetus is able to survive outside the womb. That's generally considered to be about 24 weeks. Normal pregnancies run about 40 weeks

Several states have enacted similar bans starting at 20 weeks. But the 9th Circuit's ruling is binding only in the nine Western states under the court's jurisdiction. Idaho is the only other state in the region covered by the 9th Circuit with a similar ban.

A trial judge had ruled that the ban could take effect. U.S. District Judge James Teilborg ruled it was constitutional, partly because of concerns about the health of women and possible pain for fetuses.

But abortion-rights groups appealed that decision, saying the 20-week ban would not give some women time to carefully decide whether to abort problem pregnancies.

The ban included an exception for medical emergencies.

Police release photos of Giffords shooting

Tucson, Ariz. • Authorities released nearly 600 photos that investigators took in the aftermath of the Tucson shooting rampage that killed six people and wounded former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and 12 others.

The photos showed the handgun, high-capacity pistol magazines and knife that Jared Lee Loughner carried with him as he carried out the January 2011 attack.

The images also include Loughner's receipt for the motel where he stayed the night before the shooting, a credit card record showing ear plugs he bought and dozens of vehicles that were in the parking lot of the shopping center where the shooting unfolded.

The release of photos didn't include any gruesome crime-scene images of victims that are being shielded from the public out of respect to those who were injured and killed in the attack.

Man charged in death of missing Maine girl

Bangor, Maine • When 15-year-old Nichole Cable left home May 12, she told her family she was heading out to see someone she'd met on Facebook.

The high school sophomore never came back.

Now, a 20-year-old man faces charges in her death after a body believed to be the missing teen's was found in a wooded area north of Bangor.

Kyle Dube, of Orono, was charged with murder Tuesday, a day after the remains were found in Old Town, State Police Lt. Christopher Coleman said at a news conference.

Police declined to reveal the circumstances of her death, describe her relationship with Dube or discuss the evidence they have against him. Nor was it clear whether her Facebook relationship had anything to do with her disappearance and homicide.

More details were expected to emerge once police submit an affidavit of probable cause, which could happen as early as Wednesday.

New gun lets owner disable it remotely

San Jose, Calif. • A high-tech startup is wading into the gun control debate with a wireless controller that would allow gun owners to know when their weapon is moved — and disable it remotely.

The technology, but not an actual gun, was demonstrated Tuesday at a wireless-technology conference in Las Vegas. The new Yardarm Technologies LLC system would trigger an alarm on an owner's cellphone if a gun is moved, and the owner could then hit a button to activate the safety and disable the weapon. It would add about $50 to the cost of a gun and about $12 a year for the service.

The Yardarm system is one of several recently introduced high-tech offerings.

The iGun only fires if it recognizes a ring on a finger, and the Intelligun uses a finger print locking system.