Obama Grants Clemency To 111 Prisoners; DOJ 'Confident' It Will Clear Backlog

President Obama shortened the prison sentences of 111 inmates Tuesday, including 35 people who had expected to spend the rest of their lives in federal custody, authorities told NPR.Word of the new batch of clemency grants came as the second in command at the Justice Department told NPR that lawyers there have worked through an enormous backlog of drug cases and, despite doubts from prisoner advocates, they will be able to consider each of the thousands of applications from drug criminals...
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When you praise a dog, it's listening not just to the words you say but also how you say them.

That might not be huge news to dog owners. But now scientists have explored this phenomenon by using an imaging machine to peek inside the brains of 13 dogs as they listened to their trainer's voice.

Jim Hill / KUNC

2016 hasn’t been a good year for people who want to restrict oil and gas development in Colorado. Now the failure to collect enough valid signatures to put two anti-fracking initiatives on the November ballot means no foreseeable resolution to an issue that has divided the state.

"This is not the end of this fight," said Pete Maysmith, the executive director of the environmental group Conservation Colorado. His group endorsed initiative 75, which would have allowed local governments to enact their own laws to prevent or mitigate local impacts from oil and gas development.

Two weeks from now in Surrey, England, a coroner's inquest is scheduled for a most peculiar death.

Here are the facts: In November 2012, a 44-year-old man died while out jogging near his Surrey home. The man was reported to have been in robust health, and police declared that the death was not suspicious.

But here are a few more facts: The jogger was a Russian banker who had fled Russia after helping expose tax fraud that implicated both the Mafia and the Russian state. Traces of a rare, poisonous flowering plant were found in his stomach.

Dan Boyce

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams announced initiatives 75 and 78 failed to make the November 2016 ballot after supporters failed to collect enough valid signatures.

Lynn Bartles / Colorado Secretary of State

So far, seven initiatives have been approved for Colorado’s November ballot. That’s a perfect score for the various measures, including a minimum wage increase and one that allows “death with dignity” for the terminally ill. The Secretary of State is now sorting through the signatures for two more measures. They're the last two to be considered and, taken together, would greatly restrict oil and gas development in the state. Government workers are doing the tedious work  of sorting through boxes of petitions to determine if Initiatives 75 and 78 have the 98,482 signatures required to be placed on the ballot.

Courtesy Magnoilia Pictures

The documentaries of Werner Herzog are as singular as his remarkable voice when he narrates. The films are personal, eccentric, obsessive. The variety of life in total fascinates Herzog, whether its cave paintings in France, lurid tribal beauty contests for men, or now the dreaminess of the internet in the minds of scientists in the laboratories of American universities.

Luke Runyon / KUNC

It’s clear that residents and visitors love Colorado’s incredible outdoor spaces. Recreation is great for the state’s economy, but it can be a double-edged sword when too many people come to enjoy Colorado’s most cherished places.

 

KUNC News explored the challenges of keeping places open and encouraging visitation while at the same time protecting the fragile beauty of our favorite spots in the series Loved To Death.

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