Thursday is here, and let’s hope it’s a good one…
A note to our readers: The print edition of the NJN that you should have received yesterday will arrive today. As we noted yesterday, our computer network server completely died right before deadline, and we were not able to rescue the remaining stories and other content in time. But it’s all better now.
Weather: Time for a tan. The forecast is very simple for the next week — sunny, hot days and clear, warm nights. Highs will be in the 92 to 94 degree range, with nighttime lows in the upper 60s through Saturday, then bumping up to the lower 70s. No rain is expected.
Traffic: ALDOT plans another rolling roadblock today on I-65 northbound through the Corridor X construction area for blasting. The roadblock begins at the I-20/59 interchange at 1:30 p.m. Delays along U.S 31 in the same area are also planned.
Congressional committee comes down on attorney general. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee voted along party lines to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for refusing to hand over documents related to the botched “Fast and Furious” operation that allowed Mexican drug cartels access to firearms in an attempt to trace where they ended up — an operation that resulted in a U.S. Border Patrol agent being killed by one of those guns. At Holder’s urging. President Obama invoked executive privilege in refusing to release the documents, which finally prompted the contempt vote. The matter will be taken up by the full House of Representatives next week, according to Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.
Fultondale murderer gets life without parole. A Bessemer circuit judge agreed with the jury recommendation, and sentenced Joshua Holten to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Holten, 33 and from Fultondale, was convicted of murdering a Hoover woman with whom he once had a romantic relationship. Holten asked the judge to give him the death penalty. Courtney Stevenson was found shot at her home in late 2009; Hoover police found Holten walking on Highway 150 near the home later that night, and recognized him from an earlier domestic disturbance call at Stevenson’s house.
Sports: Sandusky trial nears end. The sexual molestation trial of former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky came to the end of testimony Wednesday, with the defense resting without calling Sandusky to the witness stand. Closing arguments begin today, with the jury getting the case shortly thereafter. Sandusky faces 50 counts of sexual abuse charges involving young boys he met through his charity; the scandal resulted in the firing of legendary Nittany Lions coach Joe Paterno, who died shortly thereafter…. The judge in the trial of Harvey Updyke, the man accused of poisoning the famous trees at Toomer’s Corner near Auburn University, has placed a gag order on all those involved in the trial except for the attorneys. The order also applies to Paul Finebaum, on whose radio show Updyke announced he had poisoned the trees. Updyke told a reporter for Auburn’s student newspaper Tuesday that he had committed the act; that reporter has now been subpoenaed…. College football: The Associated Press is reporting that commissioners from the top football conferences are close to agreeing on a four-team playoff system, with the semifinals to rotate between two of the existing major bowl games, much like the original Bowl Championship Series title game took place at a bowl in the first few years of the system.