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US-RIGHT-TO-PRIVACY

Wyoming Legislature set to consider 'right to privacy'

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Legislature is set to consider a measure in its session starting next month that would allow voters to decide whether to change the state constitution to recognize an individual right to privacy.

Proponents say increasing collection of data by private industry and government makes the measure necessary.

The Legislature rejected a similar measure last year. Opponents cautioned that last year's proposal didn't include language specifying that the public has a right to view information about government operations.

The proposed amendment going before the Legislature this year specifies that it wouldn't deprive people of the right to inspect public records or observe government operations except in cases in which the demand for individual privacy clearly exceeds the merits of public disclosure.

The Wyoming Press Association supports the current proposal.

TETON AVALANCHE DEATHS

2 skiers killed in avalanche near Jackson Hole ID'd

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) - Authorities have released the names of two skiers who were killed in an avalanche just south of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

Teton County Deputy Coroner Russell Nelson identified the victims Tuesday as 46-year-old David Hannagan and 36-year-old Catherine Grimes.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports Hannagan, Grimes and another skier were caught in the avalanche just outside the resort's southern boundary Sunday. The third skier survived by grabbing onto a tree.

Hannagan was a real estate agent and surf instructor from New South Wales, Australia. Grimes was a physical therapist in Scottsdale, Arizona. Nelson says the two had been dating for less than a month when they came to Jackson Hole on vacation.

The group did not have any avalanche safety equipment.

YELLOWSTONE BISON SLAUGHTER

Yellowstone sued over bison slaughter restrictions

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - A wildlife advocate and a freelance journalist are suing the National Park Service to gain access to a program that ships Yellowstone National Park bison to slaughter.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Wyoming. It comes as Yellowstone administrators plan to kill up to 900 bison this winter through slaughter and hunting to reduce the size of the park's herds.

During those operations, portions of the park are closed and public access is restricted at a large corral that holds captured bison destined for slaughter.

The lawsuit argues the restrictions violate free speech protections under the First Amendment by limiting access for journalists and the public.

The plaintiffs in the case are Stephany Seay (SAY) with the Buffalo Field Campaign and New York-based freelance journalist Christopher Ketcham.

CHEYENNE SHOOTING

Wyo. Supreme Court upholds convictions in Cheyenne killings

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Supreme Court has upheld a sentence of life in prison for a Cheyenne man found guilty of killing two people and wounding a third at his home five years ago.

The court on Tuesday rejected arguments from Nathaniel Castellanos that the state violated his right to a speedy trial. The court also rejected Castellanos' claims that his trial lawyers did an inadequate job and that there were errors in selecting jurors.

Castellanos was convicted in 2013 of two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder in the August 2011 shootings.

Police found Corey Walker and Megan McIntosh dead at Castellanos' home. Another woman, Amber McGuire, survived gunshot wounds and testified against Castellanos at trial.

Cheyenne lawyer Elizabeth Lance represented Castellanos on appeal. She declined comment Tuesday.

POLICE-MENTAL HEALTH TRAINING

Wyoming law enforcement train to handle mental health crises

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Law enforcement officers from across Wyoming are working to better handle people experiencing a mental illness or crisis.

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle reports that the Cheyenne Police Department is hosting 40 hours of training in partnership with Cheyenne Regional Medical Center's Behavioral Health Services and Peak Wellness.

The training is aimed at helping first responders deescalate situations in which people are experiencing a mental health crisis.

Cheyenne police have had a Crisis Intervention Team of officers specifically trained in mental health issues for a few years, but beginning this year all officers in the department will receive four hours of training dedicated to crisis intervention as part of the annual training curriculum.

COAL MORATORIUM

Major mine expansions in West test moratorium on coal sales

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - An Obama administration effort to overhaul coal sales from public lands will be put to its first test this week as companies seek to advance two major mining projects in the Western U.S.

Cloud Peak Energy and Lighthouse Resources Inc. want to mine a combined 644 million tons of coal from government-controlled reserves in Montana and Wyoming.

Federal and state officials are meeting Wednesday to consider the request.

It comes more than a week after U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell ordered a moratorium on government coal sales to address climate change and ensure taxpayers aren't getting shortchanged.

Pending applications still can be reviewed, but no final decisions will be made.

An Associated Press review shows the moratorium could affect 28 mining projects in nine states involving more than 1.3 billion tons of coal.

YELLOWSTONE BISON SLAUGHTER

Yellowstone sued over bison slaughter restrictions

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - A wildlife advocate and a freelance journalist are suing the National Park Service to gain access to a program that ships Yellowstone National Park bison to slaughter.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Wyoming. It comes as Yellowstone administrators plan to kill up to 900 bison this winter through slaughter and hunting to reduce the size of the park's herds.

During those operations, portions of the park are closed and public access is restricted at a large corral that holds captured bison destined for slaughter.

The lawsuit argues the restrictions violate free speech protections under the First Amendment by limiting access for journalists and the public.

The plaintiffs in the case are Stephany Seay (SAY) with the Buffalo Field Campaign and New York-based freelance journalist Christopher Ketcham.