Alabama

With only her dog for company, a 4-year-old girl survived alone in the Alabama woods before an army of volunteers and law enforcement came together to find her not far from where she was last seen two days before.

Evelyn Sides, who goes by Vadie, wandered off into the woods near Loachapoka, Ala., Wednesday afternoon.

Updated 2:46 p.m. ET

Louisiana has emerged as a hot spot for the spread of coronavirus, with nearly 2,305 cases of COVID-19 and 83 reported deaths.

"Our rate of growth is faster than any state in the country," Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards said during a televised address this week.

He warns the crisis has overwhelmed Louisiana's ability to combat the spread of the disease, and care for the sick. And in contrast to neighboring states, Louisiana is imposing tight restrictions on movement and economic activity.

Nathaniel Woods, who was convicted in the 2004 killings of three Birmingham, Ala., police officers, was put to death using a lethal cocktail of drugs late Thursday after the U.S. Supreme Court denied him reprieve.

Woods, 43, reportedly had no last words as the drugs flowed into his body. He was pronounced dead at 9:01 p.m. CST.

The three officers, Harley A. Chisholm III, Carlos "Curly" Owen and Charles R. Bennett, were killed in a hail of bullets as they sought to arrest Woods and another man, Kerry Spencer, at a suspected drug house in Birmingham.

Saying you're behind President Trump goes a long way in Alabama, where he has a 60% approval rating. Even a local school board candidate declared his devotion to the president during a recent speech at a meeting of the South Baldwin Republican Women in Foley, Ala.

And it's a factor in a hotly contested Republican Senate primary. Former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is seeking his old Senate seat back in the March 3 primary to pick the GOP nominee to challenge Sen. Doug Jones, considered the most vulnerable Democrat up for reelection.

Three people were killed by apparent tornadoes, one in Louisiana and two in Alabama on Monday, local authorities reported. Severe thunderstorms and high winds are expected to pummel areas of the Deep South overnight, according to meteorologists.

Updated at 8:25 p.m. ET

Alabama GOP Sen. Richard Shelby is stepping into the middle of political hotbed: He's saying his longtime friend of 20 years, Republican Jeff Sessions, could win a his newly announced bid to recapture his old Senate seat, and he's prepared to help him.

Jeff Sessions wants back in.

President Trump's former attorney general and long-time Alabama Republican senator is expected to announce he is once again running for the seat he held for 20 years, according to two GOP sources. Sessions is facing a Friday filing deadline to declare his candidacy.

One source said Sessions was running without the coordination or support of the GOP establishment, including the White House, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, or the Senate GOP campaign operation. "He is definitely acting alone," the source said.

The parent agency of the National Weather Service said late Friday that President Trump was correct when he claimed earlier this week that Hurricane Dorian had threatened the state of Alabama.

The surprise announcement in an unsigned statement by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration essentially endorsed Trump's Sunday tweet saying that Alabama will "most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated."

Updated Thursday 10:00 a.m. ET

President Trump continues to defend his now four-day old assertion that Alabama was once in the projected path of Hurricane Dorian. In a new tweet Thursday morning, the President insisted "Alabama was going to be hit or grazed, and then Hurricane Dorian took a different path." The President then lashed out at the news media saying "The Fake News knows this very well. That's why they're the Fake News!"

Police in Mobile, Ala. have arrested a 17-year-old in connection with a shooting incident that injured 10 teenagers at a high school football game Friday evening. The suspect has been charged with nine counts of attempted murder.

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