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U.S. District Judge Colleen McMahon revived Laguerre Payen, 28, by warning that she would interpret his wobbly head, closed eyes and uninterested silence as a decision not to attend his trial anymore unless he spoke when she talked to him. She asked him whether he wanted to face the charges that he and three others plotted to blow up synagogues and planes.

“Mr. Payen, do you want to be present in the courtroom?” Judge McMahon asked after recounting her finding of a day earlier that he was faking mental illness.

Mr. Payen shifted in his wheelchair before whispering to his attorney, Samuel Braverman.

“He said to me three times: ‘Yes, I want to be here,’” Mr. Braverman told the judge.

After testimony resumed before the jury, Mr. Payen drooped his head on the defense table, resuming his sleepy appearance in a trial filled with talk of killing and destruction.


‘The Club’ inventor dies in car crash

CLARION — The inventor of the Club, James Winner, has died in a head-on collision in western Pennsylvania.

State police said the Tuesday crash on a rural road in Clarion County also took the lives of two other people when his sport utility vehicle and their car collided.

Mr. Winner, 81, invented the popular anti-theft device for cars, and his Sharon-based company Winner International sold more than 10 million of them. He also was widely known for his philanthropy in western Pennsylvania.

In the 1980s, Mr. Winner developed the steering-wheel lock known as the Club after his car was stolen. He sold the first one in western Pennsylvania before creating Winner International.

He also was interested in bettering the region. He said he wanted to make the area a tourist destination and create jobs after the loss of industry there. He bought and restored buildings, including the downtown Sharon home once owned by industrialist Frank Buhl, which Mr. Winner converted into a bed and breakfast.


Police: Prosecutor ‘sexted’ abuse victim

CHILTON — A prominent Wisconsin district attorney sent repeated text messages trying to spark an affair with a domestic-abuse victim while he was prosecuting her ex-boyfriend, police said.

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