A tough day awaits teachers and students of a New Mexico school after a shotgun attack, the next time we see Gov. Christie's aide might be under oath, and an Ohio convict on death row will make history today.
Welcome to the Thursday edition of "5 Things to Know for Your New Day."
A bit experimental? European companies that make lethal drugs have banned them for use in executions in the United States. Now, an Ohio man is set to be put to death today by a two-drug cocktail that has never been used. No one knows exactly how Dennis McGuire will die, a death penalty expert said. His lawyers say the mixture of midazolam, a sedative, and hydromorphone, a painkiller, will cause him to suffocate in agony and terror. McGuire was convicted in 1994 of the brutal murder of Joy Stewart.
"Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee": That message is attributed to Bridget Anne Kelly, a former close aide to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. A special State Assembly committee investigating traffic tie-ups on the nation's busiest bridge - possibly as an act of political retribution - wants to hear from her. The first priority, when the committee gets to work today, is to issue subpoenas for people close to the governor and for more documents, two sources familiar with the matter tell CNN. That message allegedly kicked off the giant mess that crippled traffic in Fort Lee, New Jersey. The mayor there, a Democrat, had declined to endorse the Republican governor for re-election.
The proverbial finger on the button: Air Force officers who work around the country's nuclear arsenal have to take proficiency exams. Nearly three dozen of them at a base in Montana are now caught up in a cheating scandal involving those tests. Sixteen of the officers were found to have actually cheated, but 18 more knew what they were up to and didn't turn them in. But this is actually one scandal piled on top of another: A separate drug investigation brought the cheating scandal to light. Two officers implicated in it were also involved in the cheating. All 34 lost their certification to conduct nuclear operations, and the Air Force says the nation's nuclear arsenal is secure.
Dealing with it: Teachers face a tough task when Berrendo Middle School in Roswell, New Mexico, reopens today. They will help students cope with the shotgun attack by a 12-year-old that traumatized them this week, while they try to cope themselves. It's a continuation of what they did right after the boy opened fire. On 911 recordings released to the media, teachers tried to calm terrified students. One caller heard on the tapes was perhaps distracting a child with small talk: "Talk to me. Hey, yesterday we had a day off. What did you do on your day off yesterday?"
Deeply troubling: Neighbors are distressed about the deaths of Alex Berman, 16, and his sister, Jacqueline, 15, at the hands of their mother this week. The two Florida teens were promising classical music students, living in an upscale neighborhood. But then their parents ended up in debt amid the economic downturn, which led to emotional stress and eventually to a recent divorce after 20 years of marriage. The wife, Jennifer Berman, e-mailed her ex-husband to tell him she would harm their children. When Richard Berman arrived at his former home in West Palm Beach, his children a