The Nation

News from around the nation.

The Latest: Arkansas asks justices to not stop execution

VARNER, Ark. (AP) -- The Latest on Arkansas' effort to execute a fourth inmate before its supply of a lethal injection drug expires on Sunday (all times local): 8 p.m. Arkansas' attorney general is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to allow the execution of inmate Kenneth Williams to go forward. In filings before the court Thursday night, Arkansas' attorney general's office is arguing that Williams' conviction and death sentence have been thoroughly reviewed by courts.

Aide: Blacks not trying hard enough to work with Trump

NEW YORK (AP) -- President Donald Trump's liaison to the black community, the former "Apprentice" star Omarosa Manigault, says African-American activists aren't trying hard enough to work with the new administration. The White House aide delivered the pointed message in an interview with The Associated Press in advance of an appearance Thursday at the annual convention of an activist organization founded by the Rev. Al Sharpton.

Court: Employers can pay women less based on past salaries

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Employers can legally pay women less than men for the same work based on differences in the workers' previous salaries, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday. The decision by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower-court ruling that said pay differences based exclusively on prior salaries were discriminatory under the federal Equal Pay Act.

Police detain teen in fatal beating of 86-year-old woman

NORTH HIGHLANDS, Calif. (AP) -- California police said Thursday they have detained a young man in the apparently random sexual assault and beating death of an 86-year-old woman on a morning walk around a high school track. Authorities say the victim was killed when she came to the aid of a friend who the initial target of the attack Wednesday as they exercised on a high school track near Sacramento.

Passenger who was dragged off jetliner settles with United

CHICAGO (AP) -- The passenger who was dragged off a flight after refusing to give up his seat settled with United for an undisclosed sum Thursday in an apparent attempt by the airline to put the fiasco behind it as quickly as possible. David Dao's legal team said the agreement includes a provision that the amount will remain confidential. One his lawyers praised United CEO Oscar Munoz.

Up against NRA, gun control advocates still voice optimism

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Donald Trump, darling of the National Rifle Association, has custody of the Oval Office. The Republican-controlled Congress already has ditched one Obama-era rule to tighten access to guns. And an emboldened NRA has much more ambitious plans afoot for easing state and national gun laws as its annual convention unfolds this weekend in Atlanta. But gun control advocates do not want your pity, thank you very much.

Florida Senate apologizes for 68-year-old racial injustice

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The Florida Senate formally apologized on Thursday to the families of four black men accused of raping a white teenager nearly seven decades ago in a case now seen as a racial injustice. The Senate also is asking Gov. Rick Scott and the Cabinet to posthumously pardon the men known as the Groveland Four. The Florida House issued the same apology last week. Both votes were unanimous.

Oklahoma struggles to pay for schools after slashing taxes

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Four years ago, Oklahoma's oil patch was booming, unemployment was falling and state lawmakers were debating what to do with $200 million in surplus revenue. Republicans who control state government successfully pushed to reduce the state's top income tax rate, slash the oil and gas production tax rate from 7 percent to 2 percent and give more tax incentives to industry. But the boom ended and the money dried up.

APNewsBreak: Plot to kill gang boss a lie, witness now says

RENO, Nev. (AP) -- The star witness who helped convict the triggerman who killed a high-ranking Hells Angels' boss at a Nevada casino in 2011 says he was lying when he testified that the shooting was an assassination plot orchestrated by a rival motorcycle gang, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

2 US troops killed, 1 injured in eastern Afghanistan

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two American Army Rangers were killed and another received a minor injury during a ground assault against Islamic State fighters in Afghanistan Wednesday, according to the U.S. military. The U.S. forces were accompanying Afghan troops on the raid when they came under attack by the Islamic State Khorasan group in Nangarhar Province in eastern Afghanistan, according to Navy Capt. Bill Salvin, the U.S. military spokesman in Kabul.

Pentagon joins intensifying probe of former Trump aide Flynn

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Investigations intensified into President Donald Trump's ousted national security adviser, Michael Flynn, on Thursday as the Pentagon watchdog joined lawmakers in probing payments he accepted from foreign sources including a Russian state-sponsored TV network.

Train delays likely this summer over work at Penn Station

NEW YORK (AP) -- Rail travelers who have endured major disruptions recently at Penn Station, the nation's busiest rail station, are likely to see more delays this summer because it's in dire need of repair work, Amtrak officials said Thursday. Work on tracks and signals will begin in May and continue through the summer, Amtrak CEO Wick Moorman said. Some work will be done on weekends, but a significant part will be done on weekdays.

Ex-Congresswoman accused of living large on charity funds

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Testimony is to continue in the fraud case against former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown after prosecutors told jurors she financed a lavish lifestyle of Beverly Hills shopping trips and fancy parties on donations to a charity ostensibly set up to help poor children with scholarships. Brown, 70, has pleaded not guilty to multiple fraud and conspiracy charges. Prosecutors have laid out an expansive case in a U.S.

Texas House OKs 'sanctuary city' ban with tough jail penalty

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- The Republican-controlled Texas House approved a strict ban on "sanctuary cities" early Thursday, empowering local law enforcement to enforce federal immigration law against anyone they detain and threatening police chiefs and sheriffs who refuse to do so with jail. The vote came just before 3 a.m. and followed 15-plus hours of heated, sometimes tearful debate, much of it from outnumbered Democrats.

Gunman pursued injured officer seeking cover, fired again

MIDDLETOWN, Del. (AP) -- A man who killed a state trooper outside a convenience store was shot to death at his home Thursday after an all-night standoff with police who used explosives to blow open his door and windows. Burgon Sealy Jr., 26, was killed by law enforcement about 20 hours after he fatally shot the trooper, said the state police superintendent, Col. Nathaniel McQueen.