- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 28, 2001

Whitewater conviction upheld on appeal

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. A federal appeals court upheld former Gov. Jim Guy Tucker's Whitewater fraud conviction yesterday, rejecting his claim that a juror at his 1996 trial was biased.

Tucker has already completed his 18-month sentence under house arrest and was fighting only to clear his name.

Tucker claimed that juror Renee Johnson was biased by her marriage to Charles Hayes a week into the trial. Tucker had denied Hayes clemency on a 40-year sentence for a drug conviction. Hayes' uncle was also an enemy of Tucker's, having distributed crude political fliers ridiculing him.

Although she had lived with Hayes and their child for years, she did not list Hayes in a juror questionnaire that asked about criminal cases involving family members. She said she did not consider Hayes a relative until they married.

House honors Dale Earnhardt

The late NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt was honored by the House yesterday in a resolution praising him as one of the greatest race car drivers ever.

The House measure, passed by a voice vote, also honored Earnhardt "for transcending the sport of racing to become a role model as both a talented competitor and a loving husband and father."

Lawmakers led by those from Earnhardt's home state of North Carolina spoke on the House floor about the contributions of the man who earned seven Winston Cup Series championships and was named NASCAR driver of the year five times.

Earnhardt, 49, died in a crash during the final lap of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 18.

FDA approves once-a-week Prozac

The government approved a once-a-week version of Prozac yesterday for long-term depression treatment but cautioned it's too soon to know if weekly doses are as effective as once-a-day Prozac.

Depression often requires long-term treatment. Yet many patients quit medication as soon as they feel better, prompting a relapse. So some psychiatrists have longed for once-a-week medication, theorizing patients would be more likely to keep taking their medicine if it didn't mean swallowing so many pills.

Yesterday's Food and Drug Administration approval makes Prozac Weekly the first once-a-week antidepressant. It is for patients whose depression has stabilized and need maintenance therapy not for the newly diagnosed.

Woman settles lawsuit in sex-abuse case

WENATCHEE, Wash. A young woman who said she was pressured to falsely accuse her parents in one of the nation's most lurid child-molestation cases has settled her lawsuit against authorities for $77,500.

Sarah Marie Doggett, 22, will receive $52,500 from Washington state and $25,000 from the city of Wenatchee, with neither government admitting wrongdoing.

Miss Doggett is the daughter of Carol and Mark Doggett, whose child-molestation convictions were overturned on appeal in 1997. They were two of 43 adults arrested in a largely discredited 1994-95 Wenatchee child-sex-abuse investigation led by former Detective Bob Perez.

Miss Doggett sued in 1997, saying she was forced into a mental hospital and drugged and pressured to say her parents molested her. She has since denied that her parents ever abused her.

Judge rejects new trial for Nichols in bombing

DENVER A federal judge yesterday denied convicted Oklahoma City bombing conspirator Terry Nichols' request to void his conviction and life sentence, rejecting an argument that jury instructions in the original trial were faulty.

Nichols' request for a new trial had hinged on the argument that if jurors had been asked if Nichols knew death would result from the bombing instead of the lower standard of reasonably foreseeing death, Nichols might not have been found guilty.

"This is unwarranted conjecture," said U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch, who presided over Nichols' 1997 trial.

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