Afternoon news update

$5 million cut from Jeffco Sheriff's Dept.

Jefferson county sheriff Mike Hale has confirmed to Fox6 News that yesterday afternnon the county commission took five million dollars from the sheriff's budget. This move by the commission came just after the Alabama Supreme Court lifted a restraining order which had stopped the commission from touching the sheriff's budget. Sheriff Hale says dozens of employees could be immediately cut including 24 deputies. Hale is in court now appealing this matter to a judge.

Norfolk Southern looks to reassure McCalla residents

Norfolk-Southern Railroad officials spoke to the people of McCalla today in an attempt to give them reassurance for a freight transfer station being planned for their community, but even state leaders had their doubts about the project. Many homeowners are concerned the new station will harm their community. Railroad officials say the station will be a lot more environmentally friendly than the community realizes and that the project is a done deal. Norfolk Southern says they plan another meeting to educate the community more on the project. It will be held on August 18. Keep your browser on MyFoxAL.com for more about the event when railroad officials decide on a meeting place.

Employee shot outside Eastlake Wal-Mart

A Wal-Mart employee hospitalized after being shot in the store parking lot. Birmingham police say two co-workers got into an argument outside the Wal-Mart in Eastwood. The argument ended in gunshots. One of them is in the hospital and the other is in jail. Investigators have not released names of the shooter or the victim.

Mistrial declared in Aaron Morrison trial

Attorneys are preparing for a re-trial after a mistrial is declared in the case of a Hoover man accused of impersonating a police officer and raping a woman. On Wednesday, the jury found Aaron Morrison guilty of sexual abuse and impersonating a police officer. Yesterday, they returned to deliberate on the charges of rape, kidnapping and a second charge of sexual abuse. After 12 hours of deliberations, the jury told the judge they were deadlocked. Eleven jurors felt Morrison was guilty and one juror disagreed. Morrison will be re-tried on the charges on September 14th. He will also be sentenced on the first two charges that same day. He remains in jail on 200-thousand dollars bond.

William Bell: Cooper Green will not close

Jefferson County Commissioner William Bell says he has spent two days re-assuring hospital employees Cooper Green Mercy Hospital will not close. Bell visited Good Day Alabama today, where he said an action plan designed for the worst case scenario raised worries. The so-called "doomsday" plan was requested by every department in the county in the case funding problems increase. Bell insists county funding for the hospital is safe, but lower. Bell also says the work week for registered nurses has returned to 40-hours to deal with patient needs. He says waiting times remain long, but new plans are underway to improve patient care.