ATLANTA (AP) - Amid protests and a heavy police presence, the Georgia Senate on Friday passed a bill banning almost all abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected. The bill is backed by Republican Gov. Brian Kemp and would be one of the nation's strictest anti-abortion measures if it becomes law and is not blocked in court battles. A heartbeat can be detected in an embryo in as early as six weeks into pregnancy. GOP governors in Mississippi and Kentucky recently signed similar bills.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Representatives for Joe Biden and Stacey Abrams say that rumors the former vice president planned to choose the onetime Georgia gubernatorial candidate as his 2020 running mate are "false" and that there was "no grand plan hatched." Advisers for the two tweeted Friday that talk of naming Abrams as Biden's running mate was premature. Both Biden and Abrams are considering 2020 Democratic presidential runs, and Biden advisers had reportedly discussed options to mitigate concerns about his age.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina police say they're charging a man now living in Georgia with breaking into homes and raping women at knifepoint almost four decades ago. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said Friday they've charged 64-year-old Johnny Ealey with burglary and raping two women in 1981.

CHICAGO (AP) - A strategy seems to be emerging for how R. Kelly's legal team intends to defend him against charges he sexually abused three girls and a woman. At trial, they're likely to question the veracity of his accusers. Both Kelly and his attorney have said the accusers are lying. Other statements indicate they'll argue that, even if Kelly had sex with them, it was consensual and he thought they were of age. Prosecutors will try to corroborate the accusations, including with DNA evidence.

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