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Filed 06/15/2006 Updated after 4PM for next day...
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Today’s News Headlines from Alabama 810 News 

  • Troopers still investigating Cherokee Accident
  • Arrest Made in Gadsden Murders
  • Juneteenth celebration in Anniston Saturday
  • Oxford delays action on Sweepstakes ordinance


Troopers still investigating Cherokee Accident 

Alabama State Troopers are still investigating an accident that killed three people on Alabama Highway 35 Monday evening. The accident occurred around 6:45 p.m. across from Gaylesville School. Preliminary reports indicated that the 18-wheeler overturned with a smaller vehicle pinned under it and passengers trapped inside. Three vehicles were involved in the accident, including an 18-wheel truck, a 2000 Dodge Neon and a third vehicle. Driver of the Neon was 16 year old Lela Ann Slayton,  of Gaylesville, who died in the accident along with passengers 25 year old Christopher Bain, of Rome, and22 year old Brandon Combs,  also of Georgia. 30 year old Amanda Maxwell,  of Gaylesville, who was also a passenger in the Neon, was transported to UAB Medical Center in Birmingham for treatment. Also injured were 33 year old Shawn Marie Barlow,  and14 year old  Megan Barlow,  of Beaumont, Texas, who were in the 2005 Freightliner 18-wheeler. No injuries were reported in the third vehicle.


Arrests made in Gadsden Murders 

The slayings of two people in May apparently stemmed from a drug deal gone bad according to Etowah County District Attorney Jimmie Harp.  Gadsden police detectives have charged a man with capital murder in the May 6th deaths of 30 year old Baxter Martin,  and 18 year old Jam'eesha Shropshire.  45 year old John Curtis, of 1107 Walnut St., Gadsden, was charged Tuesday with two counts of capital murder.  Authorities said that Curtis has been jailed at the Etowah County Detention Center on unrelated charges since a few days after the shootings.  Martin and Shropshire were shot several times about 8 p.m. May 6 after they pulled into an alley off South 11th Street, between Peachtree and Walnut streets.  Martin was behind the wheel of the older model Cutlass Supreme and was apparently trying to get away after the shooting began and the car went through a couple of yards, a fence, a flower bed and struck a van before ending up on the pavement in the 1000 block of Walnut Street.  Martin, an alleged drug dealer, apparently had been on the phone with Curtis earlier in the day, according to investigators.  Shropshire was pregnant, however an autopsy showed an ectopic pregnancy, Harbin said. An ectopic pregnancy means the fetus is outside the uterus and cannot continue to birth.  The deaths of two or more people during the commission of a crime can constitute capital murder, which can carry a penalty of life in prison without parole or the death sentence.  A law that makes it a separate crime for the death of an unborn baby has not yet gone into effect.




Juneteenth celebration in Anniston Saturday 

Junetenth will be celebrated this Saturday in Anniston’s Zinn Park.  Sometimes called the Black Fourth of July,  Juneeenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the end of slavery in the U.S.  Anniston educator Ruby Evans is the president of the Anniston Juneteenth heritage board. More than 30 musical acts will be in Anniston for this Saturday’s celebration. Evans started the festival in Anniston more than a decade ago when she started teaching summer school and could not attend the celebration in her native Buffalo New York


Oxford delays action on Sweepstakes ordinance 

The Oxford City Council was scheduled to vote Tuesday night on a new ordinance to regulate sweepstakes gaming operations in the city, however according to City Council President Mike Henderson, they tabled the matter on the advice of counsel. Henderson said that one reason the issue was tabled is the potential of a ruling from the State Supreme Court.   Sweepstakes operations began popping up across Alabama after a Jefferson County Judge ruled the operations did not violate state law.  The Jefferson County District Attorney has appealed the ruling to the states high court and has the support of the State Attorney General and Governor Bob Riley.  The cities of Jacksonville and Anniston have both adopted ordinances to regulate and tax the operations in their cities.

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