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Nevada Digest

RENO (AP) — A university professor was arrested outside a Washoe County school board meeting where he said he wanted to press concerns about the mistreatment of his daughter with a disability.

Larry Daily, who teaches journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno, says his First Amendment rights were violated when district police officers blocked his entrance to the meeting and arrested him Tuesday night.

He’s accused of violating a previous trespass warning that forbids him from entering school district offices without prior approval of district lawyers or the deputy superintendent.

Daily says his daughter has autism. He told the Reno Gazette-Journal School Superintendent Pedro Martinez has harassed and intimidated him and refused to discuss what he says is a pattern of instances where his daughter and others have been mistreated.

ACLU backing suit against ‘patient dumping’

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada is joining a federal civil rights lawsuit challenging what it calls Nevada’s policy of sending state psychiatric hospital patients to cities outside the state.

ACLU lawyer Allen Lichtenstein says the lawsuit filed Tuesday in federal court in Las Vegas aims to stop the practice of “patient dumping’’ in other states.

Lichtenstein and Sacramento, Calif., lawyer Mark Merin point to Sacramento Bee newspaper reports that nearly 1,500 patients from Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital in Las Vegas were bused to cities where they had no family, no friends, no contacts and no firm housing arrangements.

The lead plaintiff in the case is James Brown, who was sent to Sacramento in February, spurring the newspaper investigation.

Las Vegas police search for 5 runaway siblings

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas Police are asking for the public’s help in finding five runaway siblings, one as young as 7.

Police are also asking hospitals to check their registries.

The Nicholas siblings were last seen on Tuesday afternoon in northern Las Vegas on the corner of Cheyenne Avenue and Rainbow Boulevard.

The children are 7-year-old Demetri, 9-year-old Sarah, 11 year-old Luchiano, 13-year-old Violet and 14-year-old Savannah.

The Las Vegas Sun reported that they ran away from the childcare center Child Haven and asked a woman for a ride to an estranged relative’s house. The woman said she didn’t know the kids were runaways.

Mysterious brown foam prompts testing at Lake Mead

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Authorities took a boat onto Lake Mead on Tuesday to gather water samples they hope could shed light on mysterious brown foam found floating on the lake’s surface over the weekend.

Park officials urged people to avoid the Overton Arm, a northern extension of Lake Mead, after several dozen carp were found dead and the foam was seen extending about eight miles from near the mouth of the Virgin River to Echo Bay.

The Southern Nevada Water Authority is monitoring water quality at two intakes and so far hasn’t found anything problematic, according to spokesman Bronson Mack. Typically, pollutants are diluted in the reservoir.

“It really is a massive body of water, and that’s one benefit from a drinking water perspective,’’ Mack said, noting that water from the Overton Arm typically takes about a month to meander to the intake area.

A park volunteer collected water samples several days ago and they turned up normal, Mack said. But the water agency wants to gather new samples using more precise methods.

High winds and waves prevented crews from collecting water Monday, and the foam wasn’t readily visible from the shore.

“We’re hoping we can still get samples’’ of the foam, Mack said.

Lab tests on Tuesday’s water collections are expected soon.

Regulators urge ban on Google Glass in casinos

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Regulators in Nevada are urging casinos to ban gamblers from wearing Google Glass, the tiny eyeglasses-mounted device capable of shooting photos, filming video and surfing the Internet.

The state Gaming Control Board issued a warning Monday saying the devices could be used to cheat at card games.

New Jersey regulators issued a similar anti-Glass directive last week.

Several Las Vegas casino operators, including Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts, have directed workers to ask gamblers to remove the devices if they suspect it is being used to secretly photograph or record.

Nevada regulators advise that the techie glasses should be banned outright on the gambling floor. They warn that the device can be used to share information among colluding card players.

Ex-mortgage firm chief guilty in Vegas fraud case

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The 75-year-old former president and CEO of a Nevada loan servicing firm has taken a plea deal in a scheme that federal prosecutors say cost Wells Fargo & Co. more than $8 million.

Justice Department officials say former U.S. Mortgage chief Earl Gross pleaded guilty to bank fraud Tuesday in Las Vegas. The charge stems from allegations that from 2004 to 2009, the company illegally withheld funds due to Wells Fargo Bank for homeowners who paid off their loans.

Gross had faced fraud and false statement charges in a February 2012 indictment.

He’s agreeing to forfeit $8.4 million to the government and could face 30 years in prison at sentencing Sept. 19.

Defense attorney Paola Armeni says she’ll seek a lesser sentence taking into account Gross’ age and health.

Sandoval signs final 4 state budget bills

CARSON CITY (AP) — Nevada state government and public employee salaries for the next two years are now officially funded.

Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval signed the four remaining main budget bills into law Monday.

The state employee pay bill erases the 2.5 percent pay cuts imposed two years ago, and it maintains six days of furloughs per year.

An appropriations bill allocates about $4 billion for general fund spending in the 2014-2015 fiscal years, and another $100 million was designated for capital improvement projects. A fourth bill authorizes the others.

The largest budget bill, funding education, was one of the first bills signed after the 2013 Legislature adjourned.

Sandoval also signed off on a two-year study of the costs of Nevada’s death penalty and a bill paving the way for hydraulic fracturing in Nevada.

Case against Reno newspaper photographer dropped

CARSON CITY (AP) — Prosecutors are dismissing the case of a veteran Reno Gazette-Journal photographer who was charged with obstructing a public officer while shooting photos of a wildfire.

Washoe County Assistant District Attorney Cheryl Wilson says the case will be dismissed Tuesday after a deferred prosecution agreement was fulfilled.

Photo editor Tim Dunn was covering a brush fire last June in Sun Valley, just north of Reno, when he was detained for less than an hour.

Dunn told The Associated Press at the time that officers accused him of trying to impersonate a firefighter because he was wearing protective gear at the scene of the four-alarm fire.

The newspaper posted pictures on its website shortly after the ordeal, showing scrapes to Dunn’s cheek and hand.

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