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Federal appeals court upholds death sentences in 1977 Maricopa murders

WASHINGTON - A federal appeals court Thursday upheld the death sentences against Joseph Clarence Smith for the 1976 murders of two teenage girls while he was on probation for a previous rape.


TSA chief promises wait times will improve after June hiring boom

WASHINGTON - The head of the Transportation Security Administration promised lawmakers Wednesday that the planned hiring of 768 workers by June 15 will ease long wait times at airports nationwide.


Tribal leaders call for return of remains, sacred items before auction

WASHINGTON - Tribal and federal officials called Monday's planned sale of Indian remains and sacred objects at a French auction "disrespectful and fundamentally wrong" and called for the return of the items.


NFL promises to return some Defense Department marketing funds

WASHINGTON - Arizona's senators welcomed the announcement this week by NFL officials that the league would return more than $723,000 of Defense Department recruitment funds that had been used to fund events at games honoring troops.


West Valley cities saw some of nation’s fastest growth last year

WASHINGTON - Two West Valley cities were among the fastest growing in the nation in 2015, according to Census Bureau estimates released Thursday.


Arizona official urges Senate to close gaps in tribal criminal law

WASHINGTON - A Pascua Yaqui official said Wednesday that changes to federal law allowing tribes to prosecute nonmembers for domestic violence represented "a new dawn" for Native Americans, but there are gaps in the law that need to be addressed.


Arizona officials call for tightened limits on Lake Mead water use

WASHINGTON - Arizona officials said Tuesday it is time to end the "gentleman's agreement" currently governing states' use of water from Lake Mead and instead put tougher restrictions into law.


‘It’s hard to be a Gypsy in my town’

NORTHEASTERN HUNGARY — Maybe it’s because of the deep crow’s feet etched into his russet skin, but Milán “Igor” Hudák’s eyes look a little defiant as he scans the small Hungarian villages through a car window one early evening in March.

Three boys play near a dumpster as night falls in the Slovakian Gypsy ghetto.

As Grand Canyon looks to record year, advocates press need for funding

WASHINGTON - Grand Canyon National Park officials say the park should break last year's record of 5.5 million visitors this year, but advocates are worried the park may not be able to handle such large crowds.


Giving an Easter pet? Expect problems to multiply like, well, bunnies

WASHINGTON - This is typically not a good time of year for Phoenix rabbit rescuer Kim Dezelon, who expects to spend the coming weeks helping local animal shelters find homes for bunnies given as Easter gifts and quickly abandoned.


Bike share program Grid expands to Mesa

MESA-Mesa is the Valley’s second city to implement a bike share program.

bike photo

Trump, Clinton win Arizona presidential preference election

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton won Arizona’s presidential preference elections in an early call Tuesday, giving distinctive momentum to the two leading candidates.