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This Hour: Latest Mississippi news, sports, business and entertainment

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State confirms 2 cases of TB at 2 Tunica casinos

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - State health regulators confirm they're investigating two cases of tuberculosis affecting two casinos in Tunica County.

The Mississippi State Department of Health, in a news release Thursday, said the two cases involve at least one employee at each casino.

Tuberculosis is an airborne infectious disease that's curable and preventable. Dr. Thomas Dobbs, the state's epidemiologist, says there's no evidence to suggest that any casino patrons were exposed.

Caesars Entertainment Corp. spokesman Gary Thompson confirms a case of TB was found in one of its table game dealers at Horseshoe Casino and Hotel.

A spokeswoman for MGM Resorts International, which operates Gold Strike Casino Resort, would not confirm whether one of its employees was involved, but said the company was working with the state department to arrange testing.


Trial on Miss. election challenge set for Sept. 15

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A trial is set to begin Sept. 15 for a lawsuit that seeks to undo a Republican runoff victory by Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran.

Retired Chancellor Hollis McGehee, who's presiding over the case, filed a scheduling order Thursday in Jones County Circuit Court in Laurel. He specifies that the trial must be finished by Oct. 3. It will take place at the Jones County Courthouse.

State Sen. Chris McDaniel filed the lawsuit last week, asking a judge to either declare him the winner of the June 24 runoff or order a new election. McDaniel claims there were thousands of voting irregularities, but Cochran's attorneys say the six-term incumbent won fairly.

Certified results show Cochran defeated the tea party-backed McDaniel by 7,667 votes.

The general election is Nov. 4.


Ex-teacher charged with sex crime

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - A former teacher is charged with transportation of minors with intent to engage in sexual activity.

A criminal complaint and an affidavit from an FBI agent alleges there were eight victims - all students at Bayou View Junior High School in Gulfport - and the incidents occurred between 1973 and 1985.

William Richard Pryor appeared in U.S. District Court in Gulfport on Thursday. He was turned over to U.S. marshals to be held until a preliminary and detention hearing on Tuesday.

U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis said in a news release that Pryor traveled with the eight victims, ages 13 and 14, out of state with the intent of engaging in sexual activity.

In an affidavit accompanying the criminal complaint, FBI agent Matthew Campbell says Pryor confessed to the incidents.


Milwaukee Tool to add up to 126 jobs

GREENWOOD, Miss. (AP) - Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp. is expanding its Greenwood operation and is adding as many as 126 jobs in the coming months.

The announcement came during Tuesday's meeting of the Greenwood City Council.

The Greenwood Commonwealth reports Milwaukee Tool has been located at Greenwood-Leflore Industrial Park since 2001. It is expanding into the former site of Friction Holdings LLC, which has been vacant for six years.

On Tuesday, the city council approved the purchase of the building for $1.5 million and set monthly rent for it at $25,832 beginning on Nov. 1.

Jack Bilotta, Milwaukee Tool's Greenwood plant manager, says the company is relocating its repair and reconditioning operation from Anaheim, California, to Greenwood.

The company employs 487 workers in Greenwood.


Budget shortfall faces Leland officials

LELAND, Miss. (AP) - Leland officials are looking at raising water and sewer rates and scaling back garbage pickup to address a projected budget shortfall in the next fiscal year that begins Oct. 1.

Mississippi cities and counties are racing to comply with a statutory deadline of Sept. 15 to complete budget work.

The Delta Democrat-Times reports after making cuts to the police department's office supply budget and the fire department's building-repair funds, the city council found this week it still had a $72,500 deficit.

City officials say a $2 increase in water and sewer rates could bring in $80,000. If approved, the minimum residential bill would be $28 a month.

The board of alderman also is considering reducing garbage pickup from two days a week to one.


Prosecutor steps away from Lowe retrial

LAUREL, Miss. (AP) - A prosecutor has removed himself from the case of John Lowe, who is being tried a second time for child exploitation.

Assistant District Attorney J. Ronald Parrish says he will not prosecute the case because he is a candidate for circuit judge in November. District Attorney Tony Buckley will take over the case.

The Chronicle reports Lowe was convicted in 2011 on five counts of child exploitation. The Mississippi Supreme Court ordered a new trial last year because Lowe was not provided a computer forensic expert to testify in his defense.

Circuit Judge Billy Joe Landrum this week granted a motion from Lowe's attorney, Grant Hedgepeth, for a delay in the trial so the defense's forensics expert could examine Lowe's computer information. No new trial date has been announced.


Woman pleads guilty to 2012 slaying

BAY SPRINGS, Miss. (AP) - A Colorado woman has pleaded guilty to the 2012 fatal shooting of a Stringer man.

The Chronicle reports Nancy Faye Yacobucci, also known as Nancy Faye Reaume, of Fort Collins, Colorado, pleaded guilty Friday in Jasper County Circuit Court to manslaughter.

Prosecutors say the body of 68-year-old Joseph "J. L." Tatum was found Nov. 11, 2012, in his camper trailer in rural Jasper County. Tatum died of a gunshot wound to the chest.

Yacobucci was arrested in Texas and was in possession of Tatum's 1999 Chevrolet Suburban.

District Attorney Daniel C. Jones says Yacobucci was sentenced to seven years in prison with two years to serve and five years' post-release supervision.

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