State, nation and world news Feb. 2, 2011

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Around the State
Tampa mother kills children for talking backA Tampa mother was arrested Jan. 28 after it was discovered she shot and killed her two children.

Julie Powers Schenecker shot her son Beau, 13, twice in the head in the car “for talking back” as she drove him to soccer practice. Schenecker then drove home and shot her 16-year-old daughter Calyx twice in the head as she was studying on the computer.

The teens were shot with a .38-caliber pistol Schenecker bought five days before.
Schenecker told investigators she killed her children because “they talked back, they were mouthy and she was tired of it.”

Schenecker was supposed to appear in court Jan. 29 to face two counts of first-degree murder, but had to be taken to Tampa General Hospital shortly after midnight Saturday to be treated for a medical condition that existed before her arrest.

Schenecker’s husband Parker is a colonel in U.S. Army intelligence. He was working in the Middle East when the shootings happened.

Around the Nation
Washington state prison guard found dead

An inmate serving a life sentence in Monroe Correctional Complex in Washington state is the primary suspect in the strangulation death of a state corrections officer.

Corrections officer Jayme Biendl, 34, was found strangled to death with a microphone cord in the prison chapel Jan. 29.

The inmate, Byron Scherf, was reported missing during a routine count. Officials say he was found in the chapel lobby less than an hour before the guard’s body was discovered.

Scherf is serving a life sentence without parole after being convicted of first-degree rape and kidnapping in 1997 under the state’s “three-strikes” law.

Around the World
Over 100 killed in Egypt protests

Tens of thousands of Egyptians took to the streets to protest the 30-year authoritarian reign of President Hosni Mubarak, and after six days of protests, over 100 people are reported dead.

Protesters have two demands of Egyptian government: that the regime that has run Egypt for years face a trial and the Constitution be changed.

Many Egyptians complain of poor living conditions, economic stagnation and widespread unemployment. There is also anger at political repression, suspected rigging in recent elections and possible plans by Hosni Mubarak to have his son Gamal succeed him later this year.

Mubarak has given no indications of giving up his 30-year rule, but he vowed to listen to the protesters’ message and fired his entire Cabinet on Saturday.

The U.S. planned to begin flying thousands of Americans out of the country Jan. 31.

Compiled by Spinnaker and Wire Services