MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Several of the "Freedom Riders" who were attacked by a white mob in Alabama's capital city in 1961 as they tried to integrate Southern bus stations returned to a former Greyhound station Friday for its dedication as a museum.
Rep. John Lewis of Georgia said he teared up when he walked through the station where he was beaten on May 20, 1961. He said the celebration Friday showed how far the nation had come.
When the Freedom Riders set out to integrate bus stations in 1961, then-Alabama Gov. John Patterson called them fools. But Patterson, now 89, welcomed them Friday and said they deserved credit for making America a better place.
The new museum is blocks from some of Montgomery's other civil rights attractions, including the Rosa Parks Library, the Civil Rights Memorial, and the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church. - AP
DAYTON, Ohio - An Ohio woman convicted of killing her month-old baby daughter by placing her in a microwave oven was sentenced Friday to life in prison without parole.
Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Mary Wiseman sentenced China Arnold, 31, of Dayton, who psychologists testified showed no sign of serious mental illness.
Arnold was convicted last week of aggravated murder by the same jury that recommended her punishment.
Prosecutors said she put 28-day-old Paris Talley in a microwave and turned it on after a fight with her boyfriend over whether he was the infant's biological father. Defense attorney Jon Paul Rion argued that the evidence pointed as much to the boyfriend as it did to Arnold. - AP
WASHINGTON - Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, the first of the top-tier Republican candidates to begin raising money for a presidential run, will formally announce Monday he is entering the 2012 race, an aide said.
The announcement will come during an appearance in Des Moines, Iowa, according to the aide, who wasn't authorized to speak on the record about the planning.
Pawlenty's decision to make the announcement in Iowa underscores the importance of the state for his campaign, which wants a strong showing there to help build momentum. He is less well-known than several potential rivals, and the Iowa caucuses, scheduled for Feb. 6, will be the first balloting in next year's nomination contest.
Pawlenty, 50, was elected governor in 2002 and served two terms. He chose not to seek reelection in 2010, and set up a presidential fund-raising committee in March.
- Bloomberg News