Morning headlines: Friday, July 22, 2011
Springfield, Mo. federal prison officials forcibly medicate Loughner
Lawyers for the suspect in the Tucson shooting rampage say prison officials in Springfield, Mo. have resumed forcibly medicating their client with a psychotropic drug.
Jared Loughner’s attorneys questioned in filings Thursday whether the forced medication violates an earlier order by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal that forbid them from involuntarily medicating Loughner as the court mulls an appeal on his behalf. The filings say officials at the federal prison facility in Missouri resumed the forced medication on an emergency basis because Loughner had become an immediate threat to himself.
Loughner has pleaded not guilty to 49 charges in the January shooting that killed six people and wounded 13 others, including Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
Ill. bars sex offenders from working in health care professions
Gov. Pat Quinn signed a law yesterday that will deny a health care license for anyone who is required to register as a sex offender. The same ban also will apply to people convicted of any forcible felony, even if it doesn't involve sex.
The ban takes effect in 30 days.
State Sen. Kirk Dillard says he introduced the legislation after learning that a handful of Illinois doctors were on the state sex offender registry. The law's supporters say patients shouldn't be vulnerable to criminals when they need medical care.
Two heat-related deaths reported in southwestern Ill.
A coroner in southwestern Illinois says the heat wave gripping the region is blamed in two deaths. St. Clair County Coroner Rick Stone tells the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that both men were found dead Wednesday night.
The body of 72-year-old Willie Gill of East St. Louis was found in a ditch near a home where he occasionally stayed. Stone described Gill as a transient and said his body temperature was 106.5 degrees.
Stone says 51-year-old Kevin Miller of Belleville died of a heat-related heart attack before he was found unresponsive on his front porch. The coroner says Miller used a wheelchair and had various medical complications.
The National Weather Service has extended an excessive heat warning to Sunday at 7 p.m.