- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 8, 2001

Inspections ordered for plane fuel tanks
The government yesterday ordered airline manufacturers to inspect the designs of airplane fuel tanks to prevent fires like the one investigators blamed for the 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800.
The Federal Aviation Administration ordered manufacturers to conduct the review and then develop regular tank inspection and maintenance programs. Airlines also must develop such programs for their fleets.

McVeigh psychiatrist barred from trial

OKLAHOMA CITY — Timothy McVeighs psychiatrist will not have to testify at the state murder trial of McVeighs bombing accomplice, Terry Nichols, a judge ruled yesterday.
Oklahoma prosecutors had subpoenaed Dr. John R. Smith after he appeared on a national television broadcast and talked to the authors of a book McVeigh authorized.
However, state District Judge Ray Dean Linder said prosecutors did not give him a copy of the book or the broadcast to help him decide whether McVeigh had waived his doctor-patient privilege.

Pediatricians issue guidelines on autism

CHICAGO — The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued its first guidelines on autism amid reports that its prevalence may be increasing. The academy hopes to dispel myths that the disorder is caused by a vaccine and that miracle cures have been discovered.
The new policy statement stresses that early diagnosis is critical for effective treatment, and suspected cases should be promptly referred to specialists.

Sex-case officer charged, resigns

MINEOLA, N.Y. — A police officer who was arrested and accused of forcing a motorist to perform a sex act has been charged with lesser offenses and has resigned, authorities said yesterday.
Nassau County officer Matthew Murphy, 36, was accused of stopping a woman on Aug. 8, taking her to a wooded area and ordering her to remove her clothes and perform a sex act.
He surrendered yesterday and was charged with third-degree bribe-receiving and official misconduct. He agreed to plead guilty to the lesser charges in exchange for the dropping of charges of first-degree sodomy.

Man pleads guilty in horse shootings

EMINENCE, Mo. — A man pleaded guilty yesterday to shooting five federally protected horses as they roamed a national park. He claimed he meant only to scare them away while he was hunting.
Harold C. "Pogo" Williams, 42, had been charged with five misdemeanor counts of animal abuse in a case that outraged local residents who had lobbied for protected status for horses at the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.

Wisconsin protects wetlands after ruling

CHICAGO — Wisconsin yesterday became the first state to protect wetlands after the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year relinquished federal control over the isolated areas that provide habitat for migrating birds, officials said.
Gov. Scott McCallum signed into law a bill that gives the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources comprehensive regulatory authority over intrastate wetlands.

Man stabs children at Alaska school

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A man who rambled and said "stuff that made no sense" stabbed four boys at an elementary school yesterday before he was subdued by police.
The attack happened shortly before classes were to begin at Mountain View Elementary School. The boys were stabbed in the neck, a police spokesman said. The victims were hospitalized in serious condition.
A suspect, identified as Jason Pritchard, 33, was charged with four counts of first-degree attempted murder and four counts of first-degree assault. He was being held on $2 million bail.

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