Car hits packed Florida church, 21 people injured
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) – Police in Fort Myers, Fla., say a car slammed into a packed church just as its Easter concert was about to begin, injuring 21 people as it barreled through the brick outer wall and several rows of pews.
Fort Myers Police Lt. Victor Medico said the Lexus sedan struck the Second Haitian Baptist Church at around 8 p.m. Sunday, when there were about 200 people inside. Investigators are looking into the crash even though they believe it was “an unfortunate traffic accident.”
A report said that church members used car jacks to lift the vehicle off people who were trapped underneath. No one was seriously injured.
Tenn. high court to hear faith-healing appeal by woman
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Tennessee Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal by a woman who tried to heal her teenage daughter’s cancer through prayer.
Jacqueline Crank was convicted of misdemeanor child neglect in 2012 and was given a sentence of just under a year, suspended to unsupervised probation.
The conviction came 10 years after the death of her then-15-year-old daughter from Ewing’s Sarcoma. According to court records, the cancer caused a grapefruit-sized tumor on the girl’s shoulder that appeared to give her severe pain.
Crank has argued in court that a Tennessee law protecting some faith healers but not others is unconstitutional.
New Jersey school sued over ‘under God’ in pledge
FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) – A family is suing a New Jersey school district, contending that the phrase “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance discriminates against atheist children.
The lawsuit against the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District was filed in state court last month and was announced Monday by the American Humanist Association. The group says the phrase, added in 1954, “marginalizes atheist and humanist kids as something less than ideal patriots.”
The anonymous plaintiffs say the two words “under God” violate the New Jersey constitution.
School district lawyer David Rubin said the district is merely following a state law that requires schools to have a daily recitation of the pledge. He says individual students do not have to participate.
The humanist group is awaiting a ruling from a court on a similar case in Massachusetts.