• Budget hole grows to $1.3 billion amid oil bust

    By RICK M. GREEN Capitol Bureau rmgreen@oklahoman.com | Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    State officials said Thursday that the hole in next year's budget has grown to $1.3 billion. There will be 19.1 percent less money to appropriate for new budget than was available for the current spending plan, the state Office of Management and Enterprise Services said. The oil bust has drained revenue from the state, making it harder to fund government services. "It's been more tough sledding since December, so the hole grew as expected. The untenable cuts to core services a hole like this could cause are avoidable when bold actions like the governor proposed are taken. There are responsible ways out of this when we show courage and resolve to do the hard work," said Secretary of Finance, Administration and

  • Will Eddie Sutton make the Hall of Fame cut?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: 5 hr ago

    The Basketball Hall of Fame will announce its finalists Friday, and of course, we’re all hoping Eddie Sutton makes the cut. Sutton’s candidacy has been a perennial topic around Oklahoma. Sutton’s résumé is packed: 806 victories, three Final Fours, four schools taken to the NCAA Tournament. That résumé also has some issues — the Kentucky scandal with the NCAA, the drunk driving that ended Sutton’s coaching days. In Oklahoma, of course, we go beyond the résumé. We know what Sutton did for his alma mater. Restored the basketball tradition. Made winning and championships an expectation in Stillwater. Made Gallagher-Iba Arena a special place. Gave OSU people a sense of athletic pride that had been

  • VIDEO: Fan wins car at OKC Blue game on half-court shot

    Erik Horne | Updated: 39 min ago

    Austin Mayes hadn’t played basketball since he was in eighth grade. That didn’t matter when it came to hitting a halfcourt shot to win a free car. At Saturday’s Oklahoma City Blue game at the Cox Convention Center, Mayes won a 2016 Ford Fiesta from Seth Wadley Ford when he sunk a half-court shot. The Blue presented Mayes with his new car Thursday morning at Seth Wadley Ford in Pauls Valley. Check out video of the shot above.

  • Family awarded $53M in Kyle Field deadly demolition accident

    Updated: 38 min ago

    HOUSTON (AP) — Relatives of a demolition worker have been awarded $53 million over his 2013 death after he fell four stories during renovation of Texas A&M's Kyle Field. Jurors in Houston on Wednesday decided on damages in the negligence lawsuit filed on behalf of Angel Garcia's mother and two children. Garcia was working for Lindamood Demolition Inc. of Irving when a section of concrete fell onto equipment he was operating. Manhattan-Vaughn, a joint venture partnership between Oklahoma-based Manhattan Construction Co. and Houston-based Vaughn Construction Co., provided management services. The demolition company was found 25 percent liable. Manhattan-Vaughn was determined to be 75 percent liable.

  • VIDEO: Russell Westbrook appears in new Mountain Dew commercial

    Erik Horne | Updated: 41 min ago

    Russell Westbrook and his "nemesis" Rocky in the same commercial?! That's the setup in Mountain Dew's new spot. Entitled "Dew x NBA: Make an Introduction," the Denver Nuggets mascot appears first, and Westbrook appears last in the ad. It's Westbrook's first national ad for the Mountain Dew brand – his other Mountain Dew ads were for Mountain Dew Kickstart. Rocky and Westbrook are in separate scenes, so their long-documented history might not have come up in the making of this spot. Other NBA stars in the commercial include Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler and Los Angeles Lakers forward Julius Randle.

  • 3 earthquakes rattle 2 towns in northwest Oklahoma

    AP | Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    FAIRVIEW, Okla. (AP) — Three earthquakes have struck near two towns in northwestern Oklahoma. The U.S. Geological Survey reported three temblors on Thursday. Two of the earthquakes happened near the town of Fairview — a 2.9 magnitude at around 12:30 p.m. and a 2.8 magnitude at around 1:50 p.m. A 2.6 magnitude quake hit near the town of Mooreland at about 7:20 a.m. No injuries or damage were immediately reported. Oklahoma's earthquakes have been linked to the injection of wastewater underground from oil and gas production and state regulators have recommended reducing the volume or shutting down some of the disposal wells. According to the survey, Oklahoma this year has already had more than 90

  • Man accused of decapitating his grandmother and her husband makes first court appearance Thursday

    By Kyle Schwab Staff Writer kschwab@oklahoman.com | Updated: 43 min ago

    A 20-year-old man police say admitted to shooting and decapitating his grandmother and her husband in their Oklahoma City home remained mostly silent during his first court appearance.

  • Now even Pandora is struggling with its future

    Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    Music streaming service Pandora had a bizarre day Thursday just before announcing its latest earnings report, Mashable reports. Its stock moved up and down so wildly — suddenly jumping from $8.35 a share to $11.20 a share  —  that the New York Stock Exchange forced trading in Pandora stock to come to a sudden halt. 

  • 'Tiny Dancer' will never be the same after you hear 'Hold Me Closer, Bernie Sanders'

    Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    New York musician Mel Flannery and her husband, Danny Sher have put their talents into "Hold Me Closer, Bernie Sanders," a song that's a Sanders-centric take on the Elton Johnclassic "Tiny Dancer," USA TODAY reports.

  • College player assaulted for helping rape victim

    Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    University of Tennessee football players confronted and assaulted wide receiver Drae Bowles as retribution for helping a woman who said she was raped by then-Volunteer players A.J. Johnson and Mike Williams, according to a federal lawsuit filed in Nashville on Tuesday. USA TODAY reports Bowles took the woman to a hospital on the night of the alleged rape in November 2014 and supported her decision to report the incident to authorities, according to the lawsuit.

  • OSU football: Barry Sanders' son to transfer to Oklahoma State

    Kyle Fredrickson | Updated: 1 hr ago

    STILLWATER — The son of an Oklahoma State football legend is coming home. Stanford running back Barry J. Sanders told The Oklahoman in an exclusive interview he intends to join the Cowboys as a graduate transfer for his final season of eligibility. “They’ve got my full commitment and I’m looking forward to being there come late June,” said Sanders, who is on track to graduate this summer. His father, Barry Sanders, had arguably the greatest individual season in college football history in 1988 at OSU with 2,850 yards rushing and 44 touchdowns to win the Heisman Trophy. “His message to me was to keep an open mind,” Sanders said. “I think that he

  • Pro-choice group demands moderators asks Dem candidates about abortion

    Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    NARAL Pro-Choice America is disappointed that Clinton and Sanders have yet to be asked about abortion.

  • Breakthrough: Scientists detect Einstein's gravity ripples

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — In an announcement that electrified the world of physics, scientists said Thursday that they have finally detected gravitational waves, the ripples in the fabric of space-time that Einstein predicted a century ago. Astronomers hailed the finding as an achievement of historic proportions, one that opens the door to a new way of observing the universe and the violent collisions that are constantly shaping it. For them, it's like turning a silent movie into a talkie because these waves are the soundtrack of the cosmos in action. "Until this moment, we had our eyes on the sky and we couldn't hear the music," said Columbia University astrophysicist Szabolcs Marka, a member of the discovery team. "The skies will

  • NATO orders warships into Aegean to help ease migrant crisis

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BRUSSELS (AP) — In a dramatic response to Europe's gravest refugee crisis since World War II, NATO ordered three warships to sail immediately Thursday to the Aegean Sea to help end the deadly smuggling of asylum-seekers across the waters from Turkey to Greece. "This is about helping Greece, Turkey and the European Union with stemming the flow of migrants and refugees and coping with a very demanding situation ... a human tragedy," said NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. Yet even after the ships were told to get underway, NATO officials acknowledged uncertainties about the precise actions they would be performing — including whether they would take part in operations to rescue drowning migrants.

  • Breakthrough: Scientists detect Einstein's gravity ripples

    By SETH BORENSTEIN AP Science Writer | Published: Thu, Feb 11, 2016

    WASHINGTON (AP) — In an announcement that electrified the world of astronomy, scientists said Thursday that they have finally detected gravitational waves, the ripples in the fabric of space-time that Einstein predicted a century ago. Astronomers hailed the finding as an achievement of historic proportions, one that opens the door to a new way of observing the universe and the violent collisions that are constantly shaping it. For them, it's like turning a silent movie into a talkie because these waves are the soundtrack of the cosmos in action. "Until this moment, we had our eyes on the sky and we couldn't hear the music," said Columbia University astrophysicist Szabolcs Marka, a member of the discovery team. "The skies

  • Last occupiers of Oregon wildlife refuge surrender to FBI

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BURNS, Ore. (AP) — Surrounded by FBI agents in armored vehicles, the last four occupiers of a national nature preserve surrendered Thursday, and a leader in their movement who organized a 2014 standoff with authorities was criminally charged in federal court. The holdouts were the last remnants of a larger group that seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge nearly six weeks ago, demanding that the government turn over the land to locals and release two ranchers imprisoned for setting fires. For the first time since Jan. 2, the federal land was fully under the control of the U.S. government.

  • Replay officials could have more say in targeting penalties

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    Replay officials are likely to have more power when it comes to calling targeting penalties in college football next season. The NCAA football rules committee proposed giving replay officials more authority to overturn incorrect targeting fouls and to call targeting penalties when they are missed on the field. The committee also agreed to allow conferences to experiment with NFL-style centralized video replay review systems in 2016. The rules committee completed four days of meetings in Orlando, Florida, on Thursday and announced several proposals that could be implemented next season if approved by the playing rules oversight panel on March 8. The targeting penalty was adopted in 2013 as a way to reduce helmet-to-helme

  • Arkansas justice cites Johnny Cash in dissent over cash bail

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A ruling that defendants can be required to pay their bail in cash drew objections Thursday from Arkansas' Supreme Court chief justice, who cited a man who had strong opinions about the legal system: Johnny Cash. Interim Chief Justice Howard Brill cited Cash's song "Starkville City Jail" in a dissent, saying the court's majority was wrong to deny a defendant's objection to a $300,000 cash-only bail in an aggravated assault and domestic battery case. "After being arrested for trespassing and picking flowers, Johnny Cash spent the night in the Starkville City Jail," Brill wrote. "His ballad suggests he was not taken before a magistrate or given the opportunity to be released on bail.

  • Wife of OKC Thunder assistant Monty Williams dies in crash

    By Erik Horne Staff Writer ehorne@oklahoman.com | Updated: 1 hr ago

    The wife of Oklahoma City Thunder assistant coach Monty Williams died Wednesday due to injuries sustained in a multiple-vehicle car crash Tuesday in Oklahoma City. “The Thunder organization has heavy hearts tonight with the news of Ingrid's passing,” the Thunder said in a statement released Wednesday evening. “Words cannot adequately describe how deep our sorrow is for the loss of Monty's wife. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Monty and his family, and we will support him in every way possible. We know the entire community of Oklahoma City has them in their prayers.” The 44-year-old was traveling with her three children north on S Western Avenue around 8 p.m.

  • Cleveland mayor apologizes for billing family of dead boy

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CLEVELAND (AP) — The mayor of Cleveland apologized Thursday to the family of Tamir Rice, a black 12-year-old boy fatally shot by a white Cleveland police officer, for the city having sent the administrator of the boy's estate a "decedent's last dying expense" claim of $500 for ambulance services. Mayor Frank Jackson said at a news conference that filing the claim was part of a routine but that supervisors should have been alerted and the claim never filed. "It was a mistake in terms of us flagging it, but not a mistake in terms of the legal process," Jackson said. Tamir was shot outside a city recreation center by a then-rookie patrolman, Timothy Loehmann, in November 2014 while playing with a pellet gun.