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He was arrested by police and FBI agents Wednesday afternoon after a standoff at a home in Baton Rouge that ended peacefully.

FBI Special Agent Howard Schwartz identified the man as Michael Mara, 53,. He had previously been unidentified.

Mr. Schwartz said Mr. Mara was arrested on a warrant for a bank robbery in Richmond, but he is also suspected in the other robberies.

Last week, the FBI began posting his picture on billboards across the country in an effort to catch him.


Teen to pitch peace idea in North Korea

A 13-year-old boy from Ridgeland plans to visit North Korea this week and perhaps meet leader Kim Jong-il to pitch his idea for a “children’s peace forest” in the demilitarized zone.

Jonathan Lee, who was born in South Korea and lives in Mississippi, is scheduled to fly to Pyongyang on Thursday from Beijing with his parents, the family told the Associated Press. They said North Korean officials in Beijing gave them visas Wednesday night.

Jonathan said he expects to meet with North Korean officials and will propose the children’s peace forest, “one in which fruit and chestnut trees would be planted and where children can play.”

The DMZ that has separated North and South Korea for more than a half-century is one of the most heavily guarded areas in the world. Combat-ready troops stand guard on both sides, and the land is strewn with land mines and laced with barbed wire.

The U.S. does not have diplomatic relations with the North and it and the international community have imposed strict economic sanctions over the regime’s nuclear weapons program. In less than a year, North Korea detained four Americans for illegal entry, and one is still in prison there.

It was impossible to get comment from North Korea, which normally makes statements through its state-run news agency.

“It’s supposed to be safe, but I’m a little nervous. It’s a communist country,” Jonathan said. “I’ve watched lots of documentaries. It’s supposed to be really clean and stuff.”


Downed tree leads to Amtrak delays

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