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Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

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The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

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Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped vegetables and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

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School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

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Guilty Plea In Plot To Murder Saudi Ambassador

Oct 17, 2012

Manssor Arbabsiar, an Iranian-born naturalized American citizen, has pleaded guilty to conspiring with Iranian military officials in a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to the United States, the Justice Department says.

He was arrested last October, as we reported at the time. It was a case, spy novelist and Washington Post foreign policy columnist David Ignatius said then, that read more like an Elmore Leonard "caper novel" than a cloak-and-dagger "spy novel."

Ignatius thought the tale of a Iranian-born U.S. citizen living in Texas reaching out to a man he thought was with a Mexican drug cartel (who turned out to be a paid informant for the Drug Enforcement Administration) and trying to arrange the bombing of the ambassador, was "extremely unusual and sloppy ... tradecraft" and isn't how Iran's spy agencies usually work.

But Justice says that:

"In connection with his guilty plea, Arbabsiar admitted that, from the spring of 2011 to the fall of 2011, he conspired with officials in the Iranian military who were based in Iran to cause the assassination of the Saudi Arabian ambassador while the ambassador was in the United States. Arbabsiar acknowledged that at the direction of these co-conspirators, he traveled to Mexico on several occasions during 2011 in order to arrange the assassination of the ambassador. Arbabsiar admitted that, with his co-conspirators' approval, he had arranged to hire a DEA confidential source (CS-1), who claimed to be a representative of a drug cartel, and CS-1's criminal associates, to murder the ambassador. Arbabsiar further admitted that he agreed to pay $1.5 million to CS-1 and had discussed with CS-1 a plan to murder the ambassador at a restaurant in Washington, D.C. — a plan that was approved by Arbabsiar's co-conspirators. Arbabsiar then arranged for a $100,000 down payment, in two installments, to be wired to CS-1."

According to the FBI, "Gholam Shakuri, aka 'Ali Gholam Shakuri,' a co-conspirator and Iran-based member of the Qods Force ... who was also charged in the plot, remains at large." He's presumably in Iran.

Iranian officials have accused the U.S. of fabricating the plot.

Arbabsiar "faces a maximum potential sentence of 25 years in prison (10 years on counts one and two, and five years on count three)," Justice says. He is to be sentenced in January.

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