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Iowa News

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A Nebraska company wants a federal court to stop four Iowa cities from restricting fireworks sales. The Des Moines Register reports that Bellino Fireworks Inc., which is based in Papillion, Nebraska, filed a complaint against Ankeny, Boone, Johnston and Pleasant Hill. A hearing on the complaint is scheduled for Friday in Des Moines.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Gov. Kim Reynolds has set a special election this summer to fill the Iowa House seat left vacant by the death of Curt Hanson. Reynolds signed a proclamation Wednesday setting the election for Aug. 8 to fill the remainder of Hanson’s term. Hanson, a Democrat, died Friday at his home after a battle with cancer. He was 73.

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – President Donald Trump has traveled to the Midwest for a raucous rally with his loyal supporters – the kind of event he relished before winning the White House. Trump touched down Wednesday evening in rainy Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and headed to a local community college, where he got a look at agriculture technology innovations before leading a campaign-style rally. He reveled in Georgia Republican Karen Handel’s congressional victory in an election viewed as an early referendum on his presidency.

BETTENDORF, Iowa (AP) – City officials in eastern Iowa are celebrating the completion of the city’s last section of the Mississippi Riverfront Trail. The Quad-City Times reports that a ribbon-cutting event was held in Bettendorf on Tuesday to celebrate the trail’s completion. The city’s section of the trail cost about $670,000 and includes the construction of a new steel and concrete bridge. Bettendorf Mayor Bob Gallagher says the bike trails add to the health of the Quad-Cities and will attract tourists.

Wisconsin News

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The Republican-controlled state Assembly has passed a bill designed to prohibit people with pre-existing health conditions from being excluded from health insurance coverage. Republicans brought the issue up after midnight on Thursday. It was not scheduled for debate and there was no notice that the Assembly planned to take up the issue. It passed on a 62-35 vote at 1:17 a.m. Thursday.

MILWAUKEE (AP) – A Milwaukee jury needed less than two days of deliberations to acquit a former police officer in the on-duty shooting of a black man last year that sparked two nights of violence on the city’s north side. Jurors found Wednesday that Dominique Heaggan-Brown was not guilty of reckless homicide when he shot 23-year-old Sylville Smith after a brief foot chase following a traffic stop Aug. 13. Smith family members immediately announced a civil lawsuit against the former officer and city.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – In the three years since fatal police shootings of unarmed black people launched the Black Lives Matter movement, few officers have been charged and none has been convicted by juries in those deaths. Experts cite a confluence of factors, including racial bias, attitudes toward law enforcement and the challenge of showing precisely what an officer was thinking in a high-pressure situation. In the end, many jurors are simply reluctant to reject the accounts provided by police.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Chiropractors would be allowed to perform sports physicals under a bill passed by the Wisconsin Legislature. The Assembly approved the bill on a voice vote late Wednesday night. It previously cleared the Senate and now heads to Gov. Scott Walker. Democrats who objected argue chiropractors are not qualified to give full physical exams for student-athletes. The only group registered in support of the measure is the Wisconsin Chiropractic Association.

Illinois News

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Illinois legislators are set to meet for the second day of a special session aimed at forcing a budget compromise in the state’s two-year impasse. Lawmakers have to come to an agreement by July 1 or Illinois will enter its third straight year without a budget. There’s been little movement on any compromise so far with little indication things will change on Thursday, which is the second day.

URBANA, Ill. (AP) – Representatives of University of Illinois police and a campus counseling center will meet with students to discuss the search for a visiting scholar from China. The Thursday evening gathering at Altgeld Hall in Urbana comes two weeks after 26-year-old Yingying Zhang disappeared. The university says the meeting is open to the public. Police say surveillance video shows Zhang entering a black Saturn Astra in Urbana the afternoon of June 9.

CHICAGO (AP) – A former commander of a Mexican intelligence unit charged with trading secrets to a drug cartel for millions in cash is asking a U.S. judge in Chicago to release him from jail pending trial. A hearing is scheduled for Thursday to address Ivan Reyes Arzate’s request. Arzate had waived his right to a bond hearing, but his lawyer recently asked for his release to live a Springfield-area home.

CHICAGO (AP) – Authorities say a 30-year-old man fatally shot a 49-year-old woman on a major Chicago expressway before shooting and killing himself. The Chicago Tribune reports┬áLisa Fisher of Broadview and Christopher M. Pena of Chicago were arguing as they traveled on the Chicago Skyway around 4:15 a.m. Wednesday. They had just passed slowly through a tollgate when Fisher jumped out of the car. Police say Pena got out and shot her several times. He then got back into the car and shot himself in the head.