06-24-2017  12:07 pm      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

Cooling Centers to open in Multnomah County Saturday, Sunday

Temperatures expected to climb into the upper 90s this weekend ...

Multnomah County Leaders Release Statement on Safety at Summer Events

Officials advise public to check in, have a plan and be aware at public events ...

Portland Musician, Educator Thara Memory Dies

Grammy-winning Trumpeter, composer, teacher died Saturday at the age of 68 ...

St. Johns Center for Opportunity to Host Meet the Employer Event June 27

Employers represented will include Mary’s Harvest and Del Monte ...

New Self-Defense Organization Offers Training to Youth in Multnomah County

EMERJ-SafeNow offers July classes for children ages 8-10 and youth ages 15-19 ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Our Children Deserve High Quality Teachers

It’s critical that parents engage with educational leaders and demand equal access to high quality teachers ...

Civil Rights Groups Ask for Broad Access to Affordable Lending

Charlene Crowell writes that today’s public policy housing debate is also an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past and...

Criminal Justice Disparities Present Barriers to Re-entry

Congressional Black Caucus Member Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.) writes about the fight to reduce disparities in our criminal justice...

Bill Maher Betrayed Black Intellectuals

Armstrong Williams talks about the use of the n-word and the recent Bill Maher controversy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

(CNN) -- A tornado touched down in southern Mississippi on Sunday, injuring more than a dozen people and causing widespread damage.

So far, no one has been reported killed, which authorities hope will remain true.

"We're really blessed because we don't have a fatality that we know of right now, and no major injuries. But we have a number of major damages to our structures around town," said Johnny DuPree, mayor of Hattiesburg, where the tornado hit.

"If there is a good thing about this, it happened on a Sunday when most of these structures were vacant," he said.

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant declared a state of emergency in four counties: Forrest, Lamar, Lawrence and Marion.

Hattiesburg, which straddles Forrest and Lamar counties, is home to the University of Southern Mississippi. It suffered damage to several buildings, but there were no reports of injuries there. University police declared a state of emergency and urged those not on campus to stay away until further notice.

Nearby Oak Grove High School also suffered damage. Randy Wright posted photographs to his Twitter account of the school, showing debris strewn on what looked to be a parking lot and a truck upside down in a baseball diamond.

The Hattiesburg Public School District canceled classes Monday. The university campus will also be closed.

"There's quite a few homes without power at this point. Quite a few trees on houses, on cars, that type of thing," said Forrest County Sheriff Billy McGee.

He said that from 10 to 15 people were taken to the hospital, but that none suffered serious injuries. Another three were reported injured in nearby Marion County.

It was not clear how those people were hurt.

Sarah Lawrence, a Hattiesburg resident, said that the storm sounded like "stuff being thrown."

"Within seconds, everything changed," she said. "I didn't feel like there was much notice. I heard the sirens and everything looked OK outside, so I started making preparations to go into the bathroom. And then, next thing I know, all the lights went out, and it got dark outside."

As the storm system moved east Sunday night, tornado warnings were issued -- then expired -- for parts of southeastern Mississippi and southwestern Alabama.

CNN's Maggie Schneider, Elwyn Lopez and Janet DiGiacomo contributed to this report.

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