- The Washington Times - Friday, November 24, 2000

Baby found safe after abduction

DETROIT A newborn boy abducted from his mother's hospital room was found apparently unharmed Wednesday night, and police said the woman who took the baby did it because she had faked a pregnancy.

Police Chief Benny Napoleon said a 20-year-old woman and a man in his mid-20s were arrested shortly after the baby, Moses Champion, was found at the home of the woman's mother. Police withheld the suspects' names.

The baby appeared to be well, the chief said. He was being examined at Hutzel Hospital, where he was taken Tuesday.

Chief Napoleon said witnesses who saw the child's picture on television told police where he was. Moses was born with five fingers and a thumb on each hand and authorities hoped that would make the baby easier to locate.

FBI agent Stuart Carlisle said the female abductor befriended Moses' mother in the hospital, convinced her they had been classmates, then fled with the child when the mother went into the maternity ward bathroom.

U.S. report praises Boston public housing

BOSTON The city's public housing once tarnished by swastikas and a reputation for tolerating racism has turned itself into a model civil rights enforcer, according to a federal report due out today.

The Boston Housing Authority (BHA) has radically changed its response to civil-rights complaints and has drastically reduced harassment and discrimination, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said in the report outlined in yesterday's Boston Globe.

HUD's report follows a $1.5 million lawsuit brought last year by 13 tenants. Along with ordering the city to settle the case, the federal agency issued a scathing report in February 1999 accusing BHA of letting civil-rights abuses flourish in its tenements.

Judge says asylum case can be held in secret

SAN DIEGO The asylum hearing for a Bahraini princess who used forged documents to enter the United States can go on in secret, a federal judge ruled.

Two newspapers and two TV stations had sought to gain access to the hearing for Meriam Khalifa, 19, who fled to the United States a year ago to marry an American Marine.

Miss Khalifa applied for political asylum on the grounds that she faces persecution for marrying a non-Muslim if she returns to Bahrain, a small Persian Gulf island-state. Her husband, Jason Johnson, requested and was granted an administrative discharge from the Marines.

Wednesday's decision by U.S. District Judge Rudi Brewster gave no reasons for the secrecy.

Stowe Center acquires letter of namesake

HARTFORD, Conn. The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center has acquired a letter by the author of "Uncle Tom's Cabin" when she was 10 years old.

She describes her safe trip to her grandmother's house from the family home in Litchfield, her new baby sister, Isabella, and a dress ruffle on which she had not done much work.

The letter, written on March 14, 1822, to her brother, Edward, was found in the basement of a church. It was purchased by the Stowe Center for $10,000 plus fees from a small auction firm in New York.

"Dear Edward, Having now a few leisure moments to spare I improve then in writing to you," she wrote. At the bottom, she almost ran out of room, so she squeezed in tiny letters "your affectionate sister, H. Beecher."

$7 million awarded in drunken-driving case

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. A jury awarded $7 million to a woman who suffered brain damage when her car was hit by a drunken driver six years ago.

Diana Mancuso, 43, who was hospitalized for three months after the 1994 accident and cannot work, won the judgment Tuesday from a Broward County panel.

The driver of the sport utility vehicle that hit Miss Mancuso's car, Shane Peter Leanna, who was 23 at the time, served nearly two years in prison.

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