National Roundup

California
Tesla's top lawyer leaves after 2 months on the job

Tesla's top lawyer is leaving the company after only two months on the job.

Tesla said in a prepared statement Wednesday that General Counsel Dane Butswinkas (But-SWIN-kiss) will return to a legal practice in Washington, D.C. He'll continue to work for Tesla as outside counsel. No reason for the departure was given.

He'll be replaced by Jonathan Chang, an eight-year company veteran who had been vice president of legal.

Butswinkas says he has tremendous confidence in Chang and the management team.

He is the latest in a long line of top executives to depart the Palo Alto, California, electric car and solar panel company.

Last month Tesla Inc. announced that Chief Financial Officer Deepak Ahuja would retire, his second attempt at doing so.

North Carolina
Pen not properly closed when lion killed intern

BURLINGTON, N.C. (AP) - An autopsy report says an intern at a North Carolina animal preserve was killed by a lion whose pen wasn't properly closed.

WRAL-TV reports authorities were told the lion was able to enter the same space as 22-year-old Alex Black because a large ball prevented the lion's pen from closing.

Black was attacked by the lion at Conservators Center in Caswell County in December, and the report says she died from significant blood loss. Responding authorities killed the lion.

The report says trainer Ashley Watts told authorities the lion had been locked in a pen within a larger enclosure, but the pen's gate was blocked by the ball. Watts said she tried to separate Matthai and Black by closing the pen, but the lion pulled Black into the enclosure.

Alabama
Police: Shooter a suspect in missing-wife case

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) - Police in Alabama say a suspect killed during a shootout with police was a suspect in the disappearance of his wife seven years ago.

Auburn Police Chief Paul Register told WSFA-TV on Monday that 38-year-old Christopher James Wallace fatally shot himself during a standoff with police. Wallace also shot and killed a female suspect who was with him.

Register said Wallace and the woman had fled to an apartment complex after Wallace fired at police during an earlier confrontation, wounding Officer Justin Sanders. A fire erupted at the apartment, and the bodies of the suspects were found after the fire was extinguished.

The chief says Wallace also was a "strong suspect" in the disappearance of his wife, Lisa. She has been missing from Eufaula, Alabama, since 2012.

New Hampshire
Trial over inheritance to be in June

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - A probate court trial of a man accused by relatives of killing his millionaire grandfather for inheritance money is now scheduled for June.

The New Hampshire trial initially was scheduled in January for 24-year-old Nathan Carman, of Vernon, Vermont, who's denied any role in his grandfather's shooting death in Connecticut in 2013. It's now scheduled to start June 10 and is expected to take three to four weeks.

Carman's also denied any role in the disappearance of his mother during a 2016 fishing trip. Their boat sank near Rhode Island. Carman's three aunts believe Carman killed her and are trying to prevent him from inheriting the mother's share of her father's estate.

The grandfather, John Chakalos, left his four daughters, including Carman's mother, an estate worth more than $42 million.

Florida
Man faces death penalty for killing 2 women in 2015

BARTOW, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man faces the death penalty for fatally stabbing two women.

The Ledger reports that a Polk County jury unanimously recommended execution Monday for 39-year-old Michael Gordon. A judge will make the final decision.

Gordon was convicted of first-degree murder last week.

Authorities say Gordon, Terrell Williams, Devonere McCune and Jovan Lamb robbed an Auburndale pawn shop in January 2015. McCune was arrested after a shootout with police.

Responding deputies went to a nearby home and found the bodies of 72-year-old Patricia Moran and her 51-year-old daughter Deborah Royal. Authorities say Williams, Gordon and Lamb were arrested after trying to flee in the victims' car.

Williams was convicted of felony murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Ohio
Abducted student had complained to police about ex-boyfriend

MANSFIELD, Ohio (AP) - Police records show that a woman abducted from an Ohio college campus and later fatally shot in Kentucky had complained to police about her ex-boyfriend abusing her.

The Mansfield News Journal reports that the records include allegations of sexual assault, stalking, harassment and domestic violence between Skylar Williams and Ty'Rell Pounds.

Williams was a student at Ohio State University's Mansfield campus where authorities say she was forced into a car at gunpoint last week.

Kentucky State Police say Pounds later shot and killed the 20-year-old Williams and a trooper fatally shot Pounds after a chase in Oldham County, Kentucky.

Records from the Richland County Sheriff's Office in Ohio say authorities had interviewed Pounds about sexual abuse allegations made against him.

Williams said the pair had dated three years until October.

Oklahoma
Man stole Pepsi truck to get to the airport

TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Authorities say an Oklahoma man stole a Pepsi truck as the driver was unloading soda in the back.

Tulsa police say no one was hurt. The driver jumped out of the back when he felt his rig move. A trail of sodas spilled out as the truck drove off.

Police say Steven Hart told them he was trying to get to the airport after an argument with his girlfriend. The girlfriend says he was searching for her.

Police say that when they caught up to the truck stopped in traffic, Hart jumped out and started to run off. Hart was arrested as the rig rolled into the back of a school bus. No children were aboard.

Hart is being held on pending charges that include larceny and attempted escape from the county jail as he was being booked into custody.

Published: Thu, Feb 21, 2019

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