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ARKANSAS

Suspect in soldier’s death seeks bigger stage

LITTLE ROCK — The Muslim man who confessed to shooting two soldiers outside a military recruiting station in Arkansas, and killing one, claims he’s being treated like a common criminal with a state murder charge.

Abdulhakim Muhammad goes on trial this week in Little Rock in the death of Army Pvt. William Andrew Long. He has confessed to The Associated Press, the judge handling his case and others, hoping the world would pay attention to the war he declared on the United States.

Muhammad claims his case should be tried in federal or military court, and he says charging him in state court increases the chance he’ll be executed.

State prosecutors say the murder charge is fitting because Muhammad committed a drive-by shooting like a common thug.

CONNECTICUT

Oldest ferry to close because of budget cuts

ROCKY HILL — A round of budget cuts in Connecticut is forcing the nation’s oldest operating ferry to close.

Historical archives say the Rocky Hill Ferry has been crossing the Connecticut River between the towns of Rocky Hill and Glastonbury continuously since 1655.

It is among two historic ferries that Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration has put on the chopping block to close a $1.6 billion budget gap.

Historical documents say the ferry began with pole-operated boats run by families from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The state took over its operation in 1915 and Connecticut archivists say it has been in service longer than any other ferry in the United States.

FLORIDA

Last space shuttle astronauts finish packing

CAPE CANAVERAL — The astronauts making NASA’s last shuttle flight gave up their off-duty time Sunday and finished packing up their gigantic suitcase for the ride home.

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