North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL

April 22, 2013

NJN/am for Monday, April 22

By Robert Carter
North Jefferson News

— It’s Monday, a new week — and we hope it’s a lot better than last week…

Weather: Average. And that’s a good thing, as typical days this time of year are sunny with highs in the lowers 70s and lows in the 50s. That’s the forecast for today and tomorrow, though highs Tuesday will be a little warmer.

Bombing suspect responding to questions. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing last Monday, is now responding to questions from police and FBI investigators, according to several media reports. The younger of the brothers accused of planting the two bombs at the finish line of the race is still in serious condition in a suburban hospital, and can only respond to questions in writing. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was captured Friday after a Watertown, Mass. resident noticed blood on a tarp covering his boat. Police then found the badly-wounded teen in the boat, after it had been riddled with a hail of gunfire. His brother, Tamerlan, died earlier Friday; reports differ as to whether he was killed by police gunfire or by being hit by a vehicle, possibly his brother’s in a getaway attempt. The capture late Friday ended a lockdown that virtually shut Boston down.

Escaped inmate charged with bomb threats. A convict who escaped from custody in Arab is accused of calling in bomb threats to hospitals in Cullman, Boaz and Guntersville. According to our sister newspaper The Cullman Times, Jeremy Lewayne Lang was arrested near Holly Pond after the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office was tipped off that he might come after someone in that area. The bomb threats resulted in the evacuation of Cullman Regional Medical Center; no explosives were found.

Picking up the pieces. The residents of West, Texas are sifting through the rubble of their small town, after the explosion at a fertilizer plant last week while flattened structures within three blocks. A large crater marked ground zero of the blast, which officials now say killed 14 people, four of them volunteer firefighters.

Sports: Two move on, two don’t, one to be determined. The first round of the AHSAA high school baseball playoffs are almost over, with one best-of-three series involving a local team still to be decided later today. In Class 5A, tenth-ranked Pinson Valley needed all three games to take out a stubborn Walker team, but advanced to the second round with a 10-0 run-rule victory in a six-inning third game Saturday. The Indians move on face Mortimer Jordan, which handled Springville easily in two games Friday. Elsewhere, Gardendale was eliminated with two straight losses at Vestavia Hills, while Corner suffered a pair of heartbreaking losses at home Friday to Jemison. In the second game, the Yellow Jackets enjoyed a 10-4 lead in the sixth inning, only to see the visitors score seven runs for a 11-10 comeback victory. Today, Fultondale heads back to Randolph County, where they knocked off the second-ranked team in Class 2A 7-2 in the opening game Saturday (postponed from Friday by rain), but were edged out in the second game 6-5. They play the rubber game of the series at 1 p.m…. Auburn: History will record that the very last rolls of toilet paper were thrown at the original Toomer’s Corner oaks not by fans after the A-Day spring football game, but by the members of the Tigers’ national champion equestrian team. The Tiger women won their third National College Equestrian Association combined championship since 2006, but it took the sport’s equivalent over rival Georgia to clinch the title in Waco, Texas. The famed trees, which were poisoned by Alabama fan Harvey Updyke two years ago, are scheduled to be removed on Tuesday, with parts of the trees sold off.