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Hundreds of Valley Children Have a Happy Easter Thanks to Local Volunteer Program

LAS VEGAS --  Hundreds of Valley kids will have a Happy Easter thanks to the help of a program called E BUNNY and a group of volunteers who put all their love and care for these children into the form of an Easter basket.

E BUNNY is a grass-roots community outreach program dedicated to bringing Easter Baskets to homeless and disadvantaged children as a token of hope, joy and renewal by passing out baskets to children on the streets of Las Vegas the day before Easter.

The program is made possible by complete strangers who donated care packages that came fittingly in an Easter Basket.

Some of these kids had never received an Easter Basket before. The reward for the volunteers is the smile on each child's face as they received a basket. But these baskets are more than just candy and stuffed animals.

"Priority of giving back hope and spirit to people is huge," said Linda Lera-Randle, Volunteer.

Nation's Economy Posted Its Largest Job Gain In Three Years

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The nation's economy posted its largest job gain in three years in March, while the unemployment rate remained at 9.7 percent for the third straight month.

The increase is the latest sign that the economic recovery is sustainable and healing in the job market is beginning. Still, the healing is likely to be slow, and most economists don't expect job creation to be fast enough this year to rapidly reduce the unemployment rate. The Labor Department said employers added 162,000 jobs in March, the most since the recession began but below analysts' expectations of 190,000. The total includes 48,000 temporary workers hired for the U.S. Census, also fewer than many economists forecast.

Charges Against Nevada Tea Party Candidate Could Be Dropped

LAS VEGAS -- A Las Vegas judge is expected to approve the withdrawal of criminal charges today against a Nevada Tea Party candidate looking to unseat Sen. Harry Reid.

Prosecutors say Scott Ashjian paid more than $5,500 to cover a bounced check. Records show he faces foreclosure on almost $1 million in home loans, owes $200,000 to the IRS and faces liens and city nuisance actions

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Metro Police Solve 107 Murders in 2009, 14 Cases Remain Open

LAS VEGAS -- Las Vegas homicide detectives had an 83-percent solve rate in 2009. In all, they arrested suspects in 107 out of 121 murders.

Police saw a 10-percent drop in murders from 2008 to 2009, down 36 from the peak in 2006. Still, police have 14 unsolved murders on their books for 2009. In each case, police have few suspects and even fewer leads.

Minimum Wage to Increase for Nevada Workers

CARSON CITY, Nev. -- Minimum wage workers in Nevada will be getting a raise under new requirements announced by the state labor commissioner.

Beginning July 1, Commissioner Michael Tanchek says the minimum wage for workers who also receive qualified health benefits from their employer will increase 70 cents to $7.25 per hour. The minimum hourly wage for workers who don't have employer-paid insurance will rise to $8.25.

Under a voter approved constitutional amendment passed in 2006, Nevada's minimum wage is adjusted annually based on increases in the federal minimum wage over $5.15 per hour, or, if greater, by the cumulative increase in the cost of living. Tanchek says this year's adjustment in Nevada incorporates the final phase of a $2.10 increase in the federal minimum wage that went into effect in 2007.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Prosecutors to Seek Death Penalty

LAS VEGAS -- Prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty against a California man charged with sexually assaulting and strangling a Las Vegas woman at her home in January.

The Clark County district attorney's office made the announcement Wednesday. Derrick Valentine is charged with a count of murder and two counts of sexual assault in the Jan. 22 death of 35-year-old Melodie Walker. The 37-year-old Valentine has pleaded not guilty. A hearing in the case is set for April 7.

Valentine is from Pasadena, Calif. He's accused of killing Walker after she tripped a burglar alarm trying to escape during what Valentine allegedly told police was forced sexual contact. The coroner ruled Walker was strangled. Valentine is being held at the Clark County jail.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

 

High Wind Warning For The Las Vegas Valley

LAS VEGAS -- The National Weather Service has issued a high wind warning for the Las Vegas area today, with gusts as high as 60 mph in some areas.

The Weather Service has advised of sustained winds of at least 40 mph and gusts of at least 60 mph.The winds should cause dust, reducing visibility and create hazardous conditions on roads, which could make driving difficult.

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The high wind warning is in effect from this morning until 11 p.m. The warning includes Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson and Boulder City.