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Madison police officer trial moved up, Kick Butts Day, Charter school legislation

The trial of a Madison police officer who was recorded slamming an Indian grandfather to the ground last month has been moved up by two weeks. reports that Eric Parker is scheduled to appear in Limestone County court April 15 on assault charges.

Sureshbhai Patel suffered injuries including partial paralysis when he was slammed face-first to the ground on Feb. 6. Police have said Parker was responding to a neighbor's call about a suspicious person. Patel's family has said he was taking a walk and doesn't speak much English.

Parker's attorney Robert Tuten filed a motion Wednesday to keep April 29 as the trial date. Tuten says the new date doesn't allow enough preparation and that he hasn't been given evidence related to the investigation.

Kids at the Theo Ratliff Activity Center in Dempolis took part in the “Hashtag I am not a Replacement” run as part of “Kick Butts” Day.  The event, which took place all across the country is designed to empower our youth by educating them on the tactics used by the tobacco industry.

A bill to establish charter schools in Alabama passed the Senate last week and is currently on the floor of the House of Representatives.
The Republican supermajority in the house is expected to push the bill through, but Democrats and other opposed lawmakers may filibuster.
Nick Rose is the President of the Tuscaloosa Democratic Party. He outlined the party’s three main complaints with the charter school measure.
“The first being the teachers are not required to have a teaching certificate to work in these buildings, the second being the lack of local control school boards have, and the third piece being the fact that this will take money from every single public school in the state of Alabama.” (17 seconds)
The bill allows for ten new charter schools to be established each year, and an unlimited number of existing schools to be converted to charter status at local school boards’ discretion.

Tobacco prevention and health coordinator with Alabama Public Health Niko Phillips says the “I am not a Replacement” program” targets big companies that want to replace the 440-thousand people lose their lives to tobacco related injuries or illnesses.  Of those, eight thousand six hundred die in Alabama each year.

“Instead of not being a replacement, the student will say what they will be.  They’re not going to be a replacement for a tobacco user but they are going to say a non-smoker or tobacco-free or they’re going to be an advocate instead of a replacement.”

There were other events on “Kick Butts” day at UAB, The Lauderdale County Health Department and the Dothan Houston County Substance Abuse Partnership.

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