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Navy commissioning USS Jackson at Gulfport

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - The Navy will commission its newest shallow-water, near-shore combat ship in Gulfport next July.

The USS Jackson was christened in March at the Austal USA Shipyard on Mobile Bay. It's the first naval vessel named for Mississippi's state capital.

The Jackson has been undergoing testing since its launch in December, and it is expected to be delivered to the Navy early next year after trials.

The Jackson is a "littoral" combat ship, meaning it's designed to operate in shallow water.

The Sun Herald reports Gulfport chief administrative officer John Kelly announced the commissioning during a business club speech Tuesday.

Kelly says the city is soliciting money from businesses and selling $10 commemorative coins to help cover the costs of bringing the ship to Gulfport.


Gulfport sees financial breathing room for 2015

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - Gulfport will have some breathing room with the budget for the coming year.

For the first time since 2009, Council President Rusty Walker says the city will not have to cut its budget to meet expenses.

Revenue is expected to be up by about 2 percent with no tax increase proposed.

The administration also anticipates a modest general-fund budget surplus for fiscal year 2015, which begins Oct. 1.

The Sun Herald reports the administration and City Council met Tuesday to talk about the budget for the general fund, which covers most operating expenses.

Comptroller Scott Wilson says the city has not seen a dramatic revenue increase in one specific category, but small increases from the biggest revenue generators -- property and sales taxes.


Witness in Yazoo murder trial fatally shot

YAZOO CITY, Miss. (AP) - The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation has joined the investigation into the shooting death of man scheduled to testify in a murder trial in Yazoo City.

Police Major Tilmon Clifton tells The Yazoo Herald that the body of 28-year-old Perry Hollins was found inside an overturned car on a city street Monday. Authorities say Hollins had been shot in the head.

No arrests have been made. Police and the sheriff's department are also investigating.

Prosecutors say Hollins was to testify in the trial of Jelani?Miles that began Tuesday in Yazoo County Circuit Court.

Miles is charged with murder in the October of 2011 fatal shooting of Cortez Tate. Tate was shot while he was in a vehicle. Prosecutors say Hollins was in the vehicle with Tate.


Adams County Sheriff's Office considers move

NATCHEZ, Miss. (AP) - The Adams County Board of Supervisors has decided to take the week to explore several options for the proposed move of the Adams County Sheriff's Office's administration.

The Natchez Democrat reports Sheriff Chuck Mayfield has previously asked the board to consider finding a location in which all offices can be centrally located.

Mayfield says the current sheriff's office, located with the county jail, is riddled with leaks and environmental issues such as mold.

Supervisor Mike Lazarus said Tuesday architect Johnny Waycaster is scheduled to present the board with a plan to address the current building's woes.

The members said they would also look for other buildings, but would wait until hearing Waycaster's presentation before making a decision.


Son of Jackson County sheriff's official arrested

OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (AP) - The son of the head of investigations for the Jackson County Sheriff's Office has been arrested.

Authorities answered a home burglary call Tuesday in Ocean Springs that led to the arrest of 20-year-old Jordan Miller, son of Cmdr. Louie Miller.

In a statement, the police commander said he feels horrible for the alleged victims, whom he knows. He says children should be held accountable for their actions and no one is above the law.

WLOX-TV reports Miller's son was booked with burglary of an occupied dwelling. It was not immediately known if Miller has an attorney. If convicted, he faces up to 25 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.


Suspect in arrested in Hattiesburg beating death

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) - Hattiesburg police have arrested a 38-year-old Hattiesburg man and charged him with murder in the death of a 22-year-old woman.

Lt. Jon Traxler tells The Hattiesburg American Shelvin Lanell Jones was taken into custody Tuesday morning.

Traxler says Jones was arrested in the beating death of Eboni Newsome of Hattiesburg.

He says police found Newsome lying on the street early Saturday morning.

Newsome was taken to Wesley Medical Center, where she died from her injuries Sunday morning. Later that day a murder warrant was issued for Jones.

It was unclear whether Jones has an attorney.


Former Poet Laureate adds archives to Ga. library

ATLANTA (AP) - A former U.S. Poet Laureate is donating her archives to a library at Emory University in Atlanta.

Natasha Tretheway's drafts, early unpublished writings and computers will join other collections at the university's Manuscript Archives and Rare Book Library. The library's collections include work by Alice Walker, Seamus Heaney and Salman Rushdie.

College of Arts and Sciences Dean Robin Forman says Tretheway's archives will help students learn about the creative process and the meaning of poetry. Tretheway is a faculty member at Emory and the Poet Laureate of Mississippi.

She served as U.S. Poet Laureate for two terms. Her work includes the Pulitzer Prize-winning collection "Native Guard."

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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