- The Washington Times - Friday, January 28, 2005

Ickes throws support to Dean in DNC race

Harold Ickes, a leading Democratic activist and former aide to President Clinton, said yesterday he is backing Howard Dean to be chairman of the Democratic National Committee — giving a powerful boost to the front-runner.

“I think all the candidates who are running have strong attributes, but Dean has more of the attributes than the others,” said Mr. Ickes, who considered running for chairman himself before dropping out in early January. “Many people say Howard Dean is a northeastern liberal. He is progressive, but his tenure as governor of Vermont was that of a real moderate.”

Mr. Ickes, who heads the political action committee of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, New York Democrat, said the endorsement was his alone and “does not reflect Senator Clinton’s opinion.” No one was available in Mrs. Clinton’s office to comment. The DNC election is set for Feb. 12.

Famed psychiatrist for children dies

DENVER — Brandt F. Steele, a psychiatrist who helped pioneer the treatment of child abuse victims and coined the term “battered child,” died Jan. 19. He was 97.

In a 1962 paper, Dr. Steele and longtime associate Dr. C. Henry Kempe, a pediatrician, became the first to detail the physical and psychological symptoms of child abuse by parents, dubbing the result “battered child syndrome.”

The Journal of the American Medical Association pronounced the paper as one of the 20th century’s 50 most important medical contributions.

Dr. Steele and Dr. Kempe also were first to document that abusers themselves often were childhood victims of abuse and neglect.

Accuser’s testimony ends in abuse trial

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The man accusing defrocked priest Paul Shanley of sexually abusing him as a child finished his testimony yesterday, despite begging the judge a day earlier to spare him from a third day of questioning.

The man adamantly stood by his accusations of abuse before stepping down from the stand after 10 hours of testimony, much of that under grueling cross-examination by Mr. Shanley’s attorney, Frank Mondano.

Late Thursday, with the jury out of the room, the man told the judge he couldn’t bear to continue answering Mr. Mondano’s intense and sometimes graphic questions.

Before the jury entered the courtroom yesterday, Mr. Mondano asked the judge to declare a mistrial, contending the man’s emotional outbursts during his testimony would taint jurors and prejudice them against his client. Judge Stephen Neel rejected the request.

HHS reveals fee to columnist

The Department of Health and Human Services says it paid a columnist at least $4,000 to promote the Bush administration’s traditional family values agenda.

The disclosure that HHS paid syndicated columnist Mike McManus about $4,000 to train marriage mentors in 2003 and 2004 comes after several other such revelations, USA Today reported yesterday.

Syndicated columnist Maggie Gallagher and conservative commentator Armstrong Williams both were paid, directly or indirectly, by the administration to promote its policies. None of them had disclosed financial ties to the White House.

Mr. McManus was subcontracted by the Lewin Group, which had a contract to support community-based programs “to form and sustain healthy marriages.”

Train derailment suspect in court

LOS ANGELES — A man charged with murder for purportedly triggering the collision of two commuter trains during an aborted suicide attempt appeared in court yesterday, but the hearing was delayed so he could undergo further medical evaluation.

Authorities say Juan Manuel Alvarez, 25, caused the wreck by driving a sport utility vehicle onto the tracks. They say he changed his mind about suicide and left the vehicle, which was struck by one train, which derailed and hit a second train. Eleven persons died and nearly 200 were injured.

Prosecutors yesterday filed an 11th murder charge against Mr. Alvarez, who could face the death penalty. Prosecutors have not said what punishment they will seek.

The arraignment was rescheduled for Feb. 15.

Defense lawyer Eric A. Chase said he wanted time to get opinions from medical experts on Mr. Alvarez’s state of mind.

From staff reports and wire dispatches

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