The Washington Times - May 24, 2011, 11:40AM

The difficult history of contractors providing security services at D.C. Public Schools continues today, as Jeffrey Anderson in The Washington Times writes that the lucrative security contract now in the hands of a “troubled company and its questionable subcontractor is being extended on a monthly basis by the mayor’s office in spite of a D.C. law and a promise by Mayor Vincent C. Gray that all contracts in excess of $1 million would go to the D.C. Council for review.”

On the subject of D.C. schools, Bill Turque in The Washington Post reports on a D.C. middle school principal under internal investigation over allegations she fought with two students in the last two months — “one a 12-year-old girl whom the principal is accused of punching in the face and the other an 11-year-old girl whose mother said she hit her head against a wall because of the altercation. Police investigated both incidents involving Johnson Middle School Principal Pamela Ransome, but no charges were filed.”


A haunting read from Andrea Noble in The Washington Times: “A 45-year-old man charged Monday with killing his teenage daughter and stuffing her body in a trash can had sex with the girl sometime before he fatally stabbed her at least 15 times, charging documents filed in D.C. Superior Court say.”

The Baltimore Sun reports that University of Maryland women’s basketball coach Brenda Frese ranks third in their database of state worker earnings from 2010, with total earnings of $957,523 on a base salary of $347,284. “But numbers one and two — Maryland men’s basketball coach Gary Williams ($2,335,890 earnings on $450,869 salary) and football coach Ralph Friedgen ($1,088,980/$280,842) — have since moved on.” The paper points out that the University of Maryland is home to the 15 highest-earning state workers and the great majority of the 1,346 employees who outearn Gov. Martin O’Malley. “O’Malley made $150,000 in 2010, less than even some of his cabinet members. State schools Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick earned $190,125 in 2010. State Police Superintendent Col. Terrence B. Sheridan took home $160,788.”

Petula Dvorak, whose column in The Post is consistently worth our 75 cents, writes about “squids,” or high-speed daredevil motorcyclists plaguing the area’s freeways. “A blue streak, a green flash, a silver one and then a red rocket in the rear, weaving between cars and popping a wheelie as soon as the driver passed us. Must be springtime in Maryland; motorcycle season is here.” She points out that Maryland State Trooper 1st Class Shaft Hunter’s death this week likely occurred as he pursued one of these squids. “The pursuit of these outlaws has been frustrating police — particularly Maryland state troopers, who patrol the areas that are their favorite speeding grounds — for more than a decade. They can’t catch them — Crown Vics simply don’t go 160 mph. Nor is that safe.” Just a flat-out good read.

We have to hand it to Scott McCabe at the Washington Examiner. “A tip from a Washington Examiner reader led to the capture of a man police charged with the first-degree murder of a 16-year-old, but who had been released from jail by a D.C. judge,” he writes today. “Kendrick Phillips, 19, is the 30th fugitive arrested thanks directly to tips from readers of the newspaper’s Crime & Punishment page, according to federal authorities. … Phillips is accused of fatally shooting 16-year-old Deonte Payton in December 2009, and leaving his body in an apartment in the Stanton Glenn Apartments in Southeast Washington. Payton was found stuffed inside a closet of a vacant apartment after neighbors complained of a foul odor.” Kudos, Scott. This was an ugly crime that looked for some time as if it might not be closed.