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Get In the Know With Kim’s Wednesday News & Sports Headlines

Education tops today’s local headlines…

State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Glenda Ritz, is anticipating a 20 to 30-percent drop in this year’s ISTEP scores. She attributes the projected decline to the test’s harder standards and a new format that students weren’t used to.  It’ll be next year before test results are back.  Provider McGraw Hill says they’re being delayed by a grading issue.

Heroin Remains

Credit: Marianne Williams Photography, http://halfasecondorless.com / Getty

A new task force created by Governor Mike Pence is spearheading a “fresh approach” to combating drug abuse here in Indiana. It will be made up of doctors, law enforcement officials and lawmakers.  They’ll meet monthly for the next three months and will focus on enforcement, treatment and prevention. The task force is being launched in response to a sharp rise in heroin deaths since 2003.

Central Indiana officials are hoping to get $30 million from a new program from Governor Pence to pay for mass transit projects.  The money would come from a regional cities economic development program.  Here’s what the Central Indiana Regional Development Authority wants to do with that money—use it to pay for a rapid transit electric bus line, a downtown Indianapolis technology district, and more trails and bike paths.

Blue Indy Cars

Credit: AC Brown

Speaking of transportation in Indy…It’s a big day for the city’s electric car-sharing service. City and community leaders gathered to give BlueIndy, its “official” roll out at a ribbon cutting downtown Wednesday morning. Most of the first 26 self-service stations opening are in Center Township. BlueIndy is shooting to have 500 cars at 200 charging stations, including one that is currently under construction in the Meadows neighborhood. Some city officials on the council oppose the program, claiming it’s being inappropriately subsidized by city funds. The service says it’s sold a thousand memberships already. Learn more about how to use the service to decide if it’s the right fit for your local travel mix, HERE.

The man who ran a foundation aimed at the health of children for former Subway pitchman Jared Fogle, is pleading guilty to child exploitation and child pornography charges. Federal prosecutors say Russell Taylor has accepted a plea agreement. Under the agreement’s terms, Taylor can’t ask for a sentence of less than 15 years in prison. Prosecutors can however ask for up to 35 years meaning that Taylor could spend the rest of his natural life behind bars. In the plea agreement, Taylor admitted to secretly producing pornographic videos of 12 children and providing some of that material to Fogle. Taylor served as the former executive director of the Jared Foundation.

The liquidation continues today of a recently defunct grocery store chain.  Double 8 Foods will continue to auctioning off the interior fixtures of its stores including such business items as cash registers and more. Liquidation items will be available to all comers at the four locations until September 4th.  Here’s the good deal schedule from Key Auctioneers…Inventory at the MLK location on begins today, North Illinois on Thursday and Fairfield on Friday.  The Sherman location was liquidated on Tuesday.

Six officers charged in Freddie Gray death

Credit: Baltimore City Police Department / Handout

There will be increased security in downtown Baltimore today as pre-trial hearings get underway for the six police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray.  Protests are planned throughout the city and police have canceled all leave for officers in case the demonstrations turn violent. During the morning hours, only a few dozen demonstrators have gathered outside the Mitchel Courthouse.  The judge in the case is being asked to rule on several defense motions, including whether to dismiss charges against the officers, whether to remove State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby from the case and if the officers will be tried together, separately or in smaller groups.

The FBI is opening a civil rights investigation into the shooting of a possibly unarmed man by Bexar County, Texas Sheriff’s deputies. Cell phone video shows Gilbert Flores appearing to be surrendering to deputies last week when he was shot, but one arm is blocked by a telephone pole in the video.  The FBI says they’ll have experienced civil rights investigators review the case. See the unedited video:

Schools are closed in and around Fox Lake, Illinois on this Wednesday morning as authorities scour the area in search of three men accused of killing a veteran police officer. Fox Lake Police Lieutenant Joe Gliniewicz  was fatally shot early Tuesday while chasing the suspects on foot. The FBI, U.S. Marshals, ATF and over a hundred police officers are all part of the search for the suspects described generally as two white and one black man.

Sports…

The Colts trimmed their roster to 75 Tuesday with the release of 15 players.  They now have until 4 o’clock on Saturday to get it down to 53. The Colts cut ties with guard Donald Thomas and as of now are hanging on to running back Vick Ballard.  The team will wrap up preseason play tomorrow against the Bengals. Head coach Chuck Pagano told the media and his players the last preseason game is just as important as the others. The Colts open regular season play next Sunday on the road against the Bills.

As you’re out and about around town today, if you run into any of the ladies of the Indiana Fever, congratulate them. Indiana’s WNBA team has clinched a spot in the playoffs for the 11th year in a row, which is a league record.  Tamika Catchings led the way with 13 points Tuesday night, as the team beat the Connecticut Sun 81-51 at home on the floor of Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Up for the team, they take on Minnesota on the road Friday night. Congratulations Ladies!!!! 

Weather today…

Periods of clouds are expected to move across otherwise sunny skies over Indy. Today’s high, a humid 92 degrees.

Finally…

Chaka Khan Performs Live At Sydney Festival 2014

Credit: Don Arnold / Getty

ABC network is revealing the full cast for Season 21 of “Dancing with the Stars.” The long-running celebrity dance show will feature Australian wildlife conservationist Bindi Irwin, ten-time Grammy Award winner Chaka Khan, Triple Crown winning jockey Victor Espinoza, Actor Gary Busey, former Backstreet Boys member Nick Carter, pop singer Andy Grammer, and Vine star Hayes Grier are also taking part. Actress Alexa Penavega and her husband, actor and singer Carlos Penavega will also become the first married couple to compete against one another on the show. Also joining the celebrity cast is reality star Kim Zolciak of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” fame, Grammy-nominated singer Tamar Braxton, celebrity chef Paula Deen and American hero Alek Skarlatos, who was one of three people that helped stopped a potential terrorist attack on a Paris-bound train last month.

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