- The Washington Times - Friday, November 5, 2004

Lautenberg wants Guard drills stopped

NEWARK, N.J. — Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg called on a National Guard unit yesterday to halt all training flights over the state until it determines why an F-16 fighter pilot strafed a school with cannon fire during a night mission.

The New Jersey Democrat called the pilot’s actions “totally incomprehensible” and demanded a “guarantee that nothing like this can ever happen again.”

A spokesman for the pilot’s District of Columbia Air National Guard unit did not immediately return calls. The jet came from Andrews Air Force Base in Washington.

The National Guard said it was trying to figure out why the pilot opened fire on the Little Egg Harbor Intermediate School from 7,000 feet with 25 rounds from a wing-mounted M61-A1 Vulcan cannon. The pilot, who was not identified by the military, was supposed to be aiming at a target on a practice range 3½ miles away from the school.

Operations at the firing range have been halted while the incident is investigated.

Miami tags ‘Gateway’ moniker

MIAMI — Florida officials trademarked Miami as the “Gateway to the Americas,” hoping to fend off other cities seeking the title as the region tries to land the headquarters of a free trade zone.

U.S. cities that fail to honor the trademark and refer to themselves by that motto or the almost identical “Gateway of the Americas” could receive a warning letter from the state.

The trademark is part of Miami’s strategy to host the permanent headquarters of the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas. Atlanta, a rival for the secretariat, once used the tag line.

Immigrants pull children from school

PHOENIX — Immigrant parents have been flooding community leaders with calls and pulling their children out of Head Start this week after Arizona voters approved a ballot measure aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration, Hispanic officials said.

Proposition 200 requires proof of citizenship when seeking benefits or when registering to vote. Government employees are required to report suspected illegal immigrants seeking public benefits or else face jail time and fines.

Peterson jury asks to review exhibits

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — The jury in Scott Peterson’s murder trial deliberated for a third day yesterday after asking to review some exhibits.

Judge Alfred A. Delucchi also reversed course and barred live television coverage of the verdict, citing concern for the families of Mr. Peterson and his wife, Laci, whom he is accused of killing around Christmas Eve 2002.

The verdict will be captured on a live audio feed, which radio and TV stations will be allowed to broadcast.

Judge Delucchi would not say exactly what evidence the jurors wanted to review as part of their deliberations. He also said he would not release transcripts from the many private meetings with attorneys held in the judge’s chambers throughout the trial.

Teens print fake money on home computer

WEST BEND, Wis. — Four teens used funny money for fast food, taxis and other purchases before they were caught and charged with forgery for printing the fake funds on a home computer.

Police Sgt. Gus Unertl said three 14-year-old boys and a 15-year-old boy were caught after some merchants noticed the $5 bills were fake.

Sgt. Unertl said authorities filed state charges of forgery instead of seeking federal counterfeiting charges because of the suspects’ ages and because of the small denomination of the bills.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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