At a Glance ...

Ex-lawmaker gets jail time for ghost employee scheme


DETROIT (AP) — A former state lawmaker accused of putting a no-show employee on the public payroll has been sentenced to 90 days in jail.

Bert Johnson, a Democrat from Highland Park, was seeking probation and home detention. But federal Judge Matthew Leitman sent him to jail.

Johnson pleaded guilty in March to conspiring to steal money and immediately resigned from the state Senate. Authorities say Glynis Thornton did no work for Johnson but collected $23,000. She had lent him money.

Prosecutors had sought up to a year in prison for what they called an "egregious act of corruption."

Defense attorney John Shea told the judge that Johnson could work and take care of his children and ailing mother if placed on home detention.


Girl’s hair extension lawsuit moves to federal court


NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A Catholic school in Louisiana and the Archdiocese of New Orleans have moved a lawsuit regarding the school’s policy forbidding hair extensions to federal court.

The New Orleans Advocate reports attorneys for the Christ the King Parish School and archdiocese say federal court is the proper venue for a case alleging violations of the U.S. Constitution.

The lawsuit by the families of two black students at the school say the policy is discriminatory because it blocked the girls from attending class. 

The school says it has since rescinded the policy. It’s unclear if the girls have returned to the school.


Man fined $124 for kicking seagull that ate cheeseburger


HAMPTON, N.H. (AP) — A man accused of kicking a seagull that tried to eat his cheeseburger at a New Hampshire beach has been fined $124.

Nate Rancloes reportedly said he had just returned from getting a cheeseburger and fries and was sitting on the sand at Hampton Beach. 

He said seagulls got to the burger, and he spun around with his leg to shoo one away, but struck the bird. He said it was a simple mistake.

A witness said it appeared the bird’s leg was injured and that it struggled to fly away.

State officials said seagulls are protected under federal law.

Lab: 13 pounds of white powder seized is sugar, not fentanyl


WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina sheriff's office thought it made a huge drug bust, seizing 13 pounds of fentanyl worth $2 million on the street. 

The powder was found in a home along with other drugs. A field test indicated it was the powerful opioid, justifying charges against three suspects.

Most of those charges soon evaporated when a state lab concluded that whatever the powder was, it wasn't fentanyl.

Officials then sent the powder to a private lab, and the results arrived this week. Investigators say the powder seized in July includes no illicit ingredients, and is nothing more than "a combination of simple and complex carbohydrates." 

In other words, sugar, worth about $8 at the grocery store.