Coast Guard: Wreckage of teen pilot's plane found
PLAINFIELD, Ind. (AP) - The U.S. Coast Guard says crews have found wreckage from an airplane piloted by an Indiana teenager who was killed when he crashed during an around-the-world flight.
Coast Guard spokesman Gene Maestas in Honolulu says portions of the single-engine plane's fuselage were recovered Wednesday night in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of American Samoa.
The body of 17-year-old pilot Haris Suleman was found shortly after Tuesday's crash.
Maestes says crews are still searching for the body of 58-year-old Babar Suleman, who was traveling with his son.
Haris Suleman had hoped to set the record for the fastest circumnavigation around the world in a single-engine airplane with the youngest pilot in command.
The Sulemans left Indiana on June 19 and were expected to arrive back in the states Saturday.
Teen pilot's brother headed to Pacific crash scene
PLAINFIELD, Ind. (AP) - A family friend of an Indiana teenager killed when his plane crashed during an around-the-world flight says the teen's older brother is scheduled to arrive Friday in American Samoa.
Azher Khan says 29-year-old Cyrus Suleman will visit a hospital in the capital city of Pago Pago where the body of his 17-year-old brother, Haris Suleman, was taken following Tuesday's crash in the Pacific Ocean near Pago Pago's airport.
Khan says the Coast Guard still hasn't found the body of 58-year-old Babar Suleman, who was traveling with his son.
News conference scheduled in Gary officer's death
CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) - Investigators are expected to announce charges in connection with the slaying of a Gary police officer.
Officer Jeffrey Westerfield was found fatally shot in his patrol car on the morning of July 6, which was his 47th birthday. He was a 19-year veteran.
Police arrested an unidentified man that same day and have held him on a warrant from Porter County.
Buncich has offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to a conviction in Westerfield's death.
GAY MARRIAGE-7TH CIRCUIT
Briefs piling up in gay marriage rulings appeals
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - At least 20 friend of the court briefs have been filed in appeals of rulings overturning gay marriage bans in Indiana and Wisconsin, including one by a group of churches and another by 10 states' attorneys general.
The brief filed by the attorneys general argues that society should decide whether same-sex marriage is acceptable, not the courts.
Another brief filed by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and groups representing four other churches argues that marriage between a man and a woman is God's will.
Most of the court briefs side with Indiana and Wisconsin. The two states are appealing federal judges' rulings that overturned their same-sex marriage bans.
Most of the briefs were filed this week with the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which is hearing the combined case.
RAPE SENTENCE PROTEST
Man who avoided prison time for rape resentenced
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - An Indianapolis man who was placed on home detention after being convicted of drugging and raping his then-wife is going to prison for violating his probation.
The ex-wife of 52-year-old David Wise said she felt "sucker punched" by a Marion County judge's decision in May to not give him any time behind bars.
That sentence changed Thursday when Judge Kurt Eisgruber gave Wise a five-year prison sentence for a June arrest for failing to properly charge his GPS monitoring device. Wise told the judge he didn't know the battery was dead until waking up about 5 a.m.
A jury convicted Wise in April of rape and criminal deviate conduct charges. He was at first sentenced to eight years of home detention.
GOP state senator's wife seeks to fill in for him
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - An Indiana state senator's wife says she'll seek to take his place in the Legislature next year while he's on military deployment to Afghanistan.
Amanda Banks announced Thursday she would ask Republican precinct committee members to select her as the temporary replacement for her husband, Sen. Jim Banks of Columbia City.
Jim Banks said a couple of weeks ago that he is to start a Navy Reserve deployment in September and return at the end of April, causing him to miss the 2015 legislative session. He's unopposed for re-election this fall in his northeastern Indiana district.
Amanda Banks is a former policy analyst for the conservative group Focus on the Family. She is vice president of Allen County Right to Life and a host of its weekly radio program.
HOG FARM LAWSUITS
Judge rules Indiana hog farms protected by law
WINCHESTER, Ind. (AP) - A judge has ruled state law protects the operator of large hog farms from lawsuits filed by residents of an eastern Indiana county.
The lawsuits against North Carolina-based Maxwell Farms accused it of allowing hog waste to accumulate and letting noxious odors spread from the Randolph County farms.
Special Judge Marianne Vorhees ruled that Indiana's right-to-farm law is constitutional and the lawsuits could only proceed with evidence of negligence.
The Star Press of Muncie reports records show the number of hogs in Randolph County tripled in five years to more than 175,000 in 2012.
Maxwell Farms says the lawsuits represent a few people who want to discredit the hog industry. An attorney for the residents says they were living in the area before what he called industrialized facilities opened.
Indiana homeowners face $1.5M dam repairs bill
PERU, Ind. (AP) - A state agency says six dams on small lakes in a northern Indiana subdivision need about $1.5 million in repairs that the homeowners should pay to have completed.
Some of the about 20 property owners in the Hidden Hills neighborhood just outside the city of Peru maintain the dams are too small to fall under the jurisdiction of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
The Kokomo Tribune reports the DNR says failure of the dams could pose serious risk to homes downstream. The agency says the dams built to create lakes for the neighborhood were never permitted or inspected.
Miami County commissioner Larry West is among the property owners. He says the DNR hasn't done a proper study to back up its findings.
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