Father sentenced to death in killing of his 5 children

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A South Carolina father was sentenced to death Thursday for killing his five children and then driving around with their bodies for nine days before dumping them in garbage bags in rural Alabama.

Timothy Jones Jr. showed no emotion as the jury delivered the verdict after less than two hours of deliberation. They also could have sentenced him to life without parole in the murder of of his children, ages 1 to 8, in their Lexington home in August 2014.

Jones is just the second person to be sent to South Carolina’s death row in five years. The state has not executed anyone since 2011 and lacks the drugs to carry out lethal injection.

Drought fears ease as snowmelt fills rivers

DENVER — A welcome surge of melting snow is pouring out of the Rocky Mountains and into the drought-stricken rivers of the southwestern U.S., fending off a water shortage but threatening to push rivers over their banks.

Last winter brought above-average snowfall to much of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, so an abundance of snowmelt is rushing into the Colorado River, the Rio Grande and other waterways after a desperately dry 2018. Lake Powell, a giant reservoir downstream in Utah and Arizona, is expected to rise 50 feet this year.

“It couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Greg Smith, a hydrologist with Colorado Basin River Forecast Center, part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “There’s this big sense of relief this year that we’ve kind of rebounded.”

Colorado was blanketed by 134% of its normal snowfall last winter. Utah was even better, at 138%. Wyoming peaked at 116%.

— Compiled from The Associated Press

Algeria jails another ex-premier in corruption sweep

ALGIERS, Algeria — Another former Algerian prime minister was jailed Thursday in an anti-corruption sweep — the second one in two days to be sent to prison in the North African nation while his case is being investigated.

A statement from the prosecutor’s office said Abdelmalek Sellal, in office from 2014-2017, is being investigated for “corruption and dilapidation of public funds,” among other things. Sellal’s incarceration came a day after former Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia, who was forced out in March, was sent to prison.

Algeria is in the midst of an unprecedented anti-corruption crusade, sparked by a people’s revolt in February that aimed to rid this gas-rich, corruption-plagued country of its political elite and their friends, who have dominated Algerian politics since the country’s independence from France in 1962.

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