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Wyoming News Briefs

GILLETTE, Wyo. (AP) — A Gillette woman is voicing concern about what she considers to be the premature prison release of the drunken driver who killed her 10-year-old daughter. The Wyoming Department of Corrections informed Deanna Scalzo earlier this month that the driver has asked to be transferred from prison to a halfway house in Gillette. LaDonna Carothers was convicted in the October 2006 death of Scalzo’s daughter. Scalzo tells the Gillette News Record that she understands Carothers will eventually get out of prison but five years is not enough time served in prison for the offense.

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — The University of Wyoming and a state nonprofit rural water organization have teamed up in an effort to make water safer to drink worldwide. UW recently completed a license agreement with the Wyoming Association of Rural Water Systems in which the association will develop and market the university’s patented technology that removes arsenic from water. Executive Director Mark Pepper says the association will use its contacts within the water treatment industry in hopes of using the UW technology on a commercial scale.

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — Relatives of a Wyoming soldier who was killed in a suicide attack in Afghanistan remember him as a man who was dedicated to the military and to his family. The Defense Department said Thursday that 45-year-old Army Command Sgt. Maj. Kevin J. Griffin, who grew up in Riverton, was killed Wednesday. Dustin Griffin, the soldier’s nephew, told the Casper Star-Tribune his uncle “was definitely 100 percent Army.” Meanwhile, Shawn Griffin said his brother “loved the Army, but on top of that, he loved his family.”

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A 67-year-old Virginia man out-spelled four of his cousins to capture first place at this year’s AARP National Spelling Bee. Michael Petrina Jr., of Arlington, Va., spelled better than 48 others Saturday to become the bee’s first repeat winner. He won the bee in 2009, and placed second last year and in 2008. Wyoming AARP spokeswoman Joanne Mai says the retired attorney won by correctly spelling the word “rhizoctonia” (rhy-zahk-TOH’-nee-uh), a type of imperfect fungi.

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