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Court to hear resentencing bid in Arizona death penalty case

PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court will hear an appeal Wednesday from an Arizona death row inmate who is seeking a sentencing retrial in two 1991 killings. James McKinney argues that the horrific physical abuse that he suffered as a child wasn’t fully considered when he was first sentenced. Attorneys say the decision could affect about 15 other Arizona death row inmates. The state has 104 inmates overall on death row. A prosecutor says a ruling in McKinney's favor would disrupt the finality that victims' families have gotten through earlier verdicts and would trigger a round of appeals.


Lawyer: Arizona man wrongly accused in 1979 Nevada slaying

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A 73-year-old Arizona man jailed in Reno and named by Nevada’s attorney general as the suspect in several slayings of women in Nevada 40 years ago says DNA shows other people had contact with the one woman he's charged with killing. Defense attorney David Houston said Monday that DNA from Julia Woodward’s clothing might only show that Charles Gary Sullivan had contact with Woodward in 1979, not that he killed her. Houston says prosecutors tainted the grand jury with testimony about Sullivan’s conviction in an unrelated 2007 California sex attack. Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford declined to comment.


US Supreme Court rejects Arizona opioid case

PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected a request by Arizona's attorney general to force the family that owns OxyContin-maker Purdue Pharma to return billions of dollars they took out of the company. The justices rejected the request without comment on Monday. Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said when he filed the case that it was meant to ensure Purdue has enough money to pay judgments or settlements in other state and federal courts. Brnovich said in a statement that he's disappointed by the ruling but "will continue to fight for Arizona's interests in Purdue's bankruptcy proceedings.


Arizona Gov. Ducey cheered for welcoming refugees

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona's Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has been cheered from both sides of the political aisle after telling President Donald Trump's administration the state will keep welcoming refugees vetted by U.S. agencies. Arizona Democratic Rep. Ruben Gallego weighed in over the weekend and characterized Ducey's Friday letter to Secretary of State Michael Pompeo as a “bold and compassionate move.” Fellow Arizona Democrat Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick has thanked Ducey as well for his action in a weekend Tweet. Arizona's Republican House Speaker Rusty Bowers has also applauded Ducey's decision that allows the state to keep welcoming people of ”all backgrounds, religions, and cultures."


Man fatally shot outside Phoenix bar; suspects being sought

PHOENIX (AP) — Police are searching for suspects after a man was fatally shot in the parking lot of a west Phoenix bar. They say officers arrived at the scene around 2:30 a.m. Sunday to find 33-year-old Marlon Cruz Isaguirre on the ground with multiple gunshot wounds. He was taken to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. Police say Isaguirre was involved in a verbal altercation at the bar with two men. Police say the victim was later confronted by the men, who were in two separate vehicles. Police say the two suspects started driving away while shooting Isaguirre.


Man allegedly tries to steal wheelchair from Phoenix woman

PHOENIX (AP) — Police in Phoenix say they have arrested a man who allegedly tried to steal a wheelchair from a woman while she was riding the light rail last month. They say 26-year-old Austin Shurbutt reportedly pushed the woman out of a light rail car on Nov. 30. The victim began to scream for help, but Shurbutt is accused of forcibly grabbing the wheelchair and causing the victim to fall from her chair during the struggle. Police say Shurbutt then attempted to steal the wheelchair but was stopped by a group of bystanders who heard the victim screaming.


Police: Man offered 2 reasons for why his twin was stabbed

PHOENIX (AP) — Police say a man arrested on suspicion of fatally stabbing his twin brother in a Phoenix apartment offered two explanations to authorities to explain why his brother was bleeding. Phoenix police said in court records that Christian Piedra initially said his brother Bryan Piedra had cut himself on a broken mirror. Police said Christian Piedra later said his brother had been assaulted by friends with whom he had been out drinking. It’s unknown if Christian Piedra has been appointed an attorney who can comment on his behalf.  Police say they didn’t find any broken mirrors or glass inside the apartment.


Feds agree to review grizzly protections in contiguous US

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Federal officials will review whether they are doing doing enough to protect grizzly bears across the contiguous U.S. states after advocates sued the government to try to restore the animals to more areas. A federal judge approved a settlement Monday and said the review must be completed by March 31, 2021. The Center for Biological Diversity said in a lawsuit that officials should consider restoring grizzlies to areas of California, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Nevada and Oregon. Grizzly bears are protected as a threatened species  in the U.S., except in Alaska. An estimated 1,900 bears live in portions of Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and Washington state.