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Federal panel indicts 13 in phony tax refund scheme A federal grand jury has indicted 13 people, including seven from Springfield, for their alleged roles in a conspiracy to receive more than $340,000 in fraudulent income tax refunds. The U.S. Attorney’s office announced Wednesday that Cherie Christine Dupuis, 42, Claudia Dorsey, 33, Travis L. Ashmead, 29, Amanda Leigh Boyd, 32, Johnny L. Cooper, 25, Lisa Lorre Dehaven, 34, and Jeannie Marie Rhodes, 33, all of ...

Arkansas Gov. Hutchinson won't sign Arkansas' religious freedom bill; asks for changes Arkansas Governor Hutchinson says he won't sign Arkansas religious freedom bill, asking lawmakers to change it.   That bill drawn sharp criticism from opponents who say it opens the door to state-sanctioned discrimination against gays and lesbian.  The Republican governor on Wednesday said he wants changes to a bill lawmakers sent him prohibiting state and local government from infringing upon someone's religious beliefs without a compelling ...

Consumer Reports: Best deals on glucose meters If you’re one of the almost 10 percent of Americans with diabetes, keeping track of blood sugar levels can help keep you out of the hospital. A home glucose meter is   essential. Consumer Reports tested 29 blood glucose meters for accuracy by comparing their results to those from a glucose analyzer used in medical labs. Another important consideration is the cost of the test strips. Those little strips are ...

Arkansas Children's Hospital will no longer hire smokers Smokers seeking a job this spring at the Arkansas Children's Hospital should try their luck elsewhere.  Employees were notified in an email message on Monday  that the hospital will stop hiring smokers as of May 1. The move coincides with the date that the hospital's new Tobacco and Nicotine-Free Campus policy takes effect.  The hospital joins an increasing number of medical facilities and businesses around the ...

Complaint against West Plains superintendent dismissed The Missouri Ethics Commission has thrown out a complaint against the West Plains superintendent of schools. The complaint alleged Dr. John Mulford used public funds to oppose a ballot issue. A member of the West Plains North High School Election committee filed the complaint in January. The school district reports the complaint was filed after Dr. Mulford provided the faculty and staff with informational documents during the ...

Neighborhood garden offers fresh food options for east Springfield residents Common excuses for not eating enough vegetables are price, and access to fresh produce.  A church is working to eliminate those hurdles for some residents in east Springfield. "The purpose of the garden is primarily to produce food but also to help the community gather together," said Colette Freeman, Neighborhood Garden project coordinator. "Participants get all the food that they grow and they get to learn more ...

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Fair, 66 F

Wed - Thunderstorms. High: 73 Low: 60
Thu - Scattered Thunderstorms. High: 72 Low: 55
Fri - AM Rain/Wind. High: 55 Low: 31
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Sun - Partly Cloudy. High: 65 Low: 50

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Headline News

Nigeria's Buhari vows action on Boko Haram, graft after election win
Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday hails his historic election victory after Nigerians vote for a democratic transfer of powerPresident-elect Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday vowed to rid Nigeria of "terror" after his historic election victory marking the first democratic transfer of power in Africa's most populous nation. "I assure you that Boko Haram will soon know the strength of our collective will and commitment to rid this nation of terror and bring back peace," he said in an acceptance speech after his dramatic win. Boko Haram, whose rampage through northeastern Nigeria has left more than 13,000 people dead in six years, is Buhari's most pressing security problem. He also promised to address a culture of political impunity and the "evil" of rampant corruption but said there would be no witch-hunt and his beaten opponent Goodluck Jonathan had "nothing to fear".

US military aid released to Egypt boosts leader's legitimacy
FILE - In this Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014 file photo, President Barack Obama meets with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, left, in New York. Obama on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 released military aid to Egypt that was suspended after the 2013 overthrow of the government, in an effort to boost Cairo's ability to combat the extremist threat in the region. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)CAIRO (AP) — The release of U.S. military aid to Egypt withheld following the army's overthrow of an elected Islamist president in 2013 has boosted the legitimacy of the former military chief now running the country, nearly a year into his four-year term.

Nigeria celebrates Buhari's stunning win; challenges loom
Nigerian former Gen. Muhammadu Buhari speaks to journalists in Abuja, Nigeria, Wednesday, April 1, 2015. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan conceded defeat to Buhari, a 72-year-old former military dictator, who was elected in a historic transfer of power following the nation's most hotly contested election ever. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Nigerians celebrated Muhammadu Buhari's electrifying victory in presidential elections Wednesday but sobering challenges confront their next leader, from an Islamic uprising to widespread poverty and graft.

Trial to seek role of online bullying in teen girl's suicide
FILE - In this Thursday, May 23, 2013, file photo, Sheila Pott poses with a portrait of her daughter Audrie in Los Altos, Calif. Audrie Pott committed suicide in September 2012 after being sexually assaulted by three boys during a house party in Saratoga, Calif. A wrongful death trial this month will determine whether bullying played a role in the girl's suicide. Lawyers are scheduled to argue Wednesday, April 1, 2015, over what evidence the jury will hear, while opening statements are expected to start next week. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — A 15-year-old girl hanged herself a week after three classmates photographed themselves sexually assaulting her at a 2012 party, petrified the boys would circulate the photos online and believing gossip about her was spreading widely.

IS enters Palestinian camp in Damascus; Jordan closes border
FILE - This picture taken on Jan. 31, 2014, and released by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), shows residents of the besieged Palestinian camp of Yarmouk, queuing to receive food supplies, in Damascus, Syria. On Wednesday, April. 1, 2015 Islamic State militants infiltrated the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk in the Syrian capital marking the deepest foray yet by the extremist group into Damascus, seat of President Bashar Assad’s power, Syrian opposition activists and Palestinian officials said. (AP Photo/UNRWA, File)DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Islamic State militants infiltrated a Palestinian refugee camp in Damascus on Wednesday and were clashing with a Palestinian group, the deepest foray yet by the extremist group into the Syrian capital, seat of President Bashar Assad's power, according to opposition activists and Palestinian officials.