- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 11, 2004


Woman gives birth at 56

NEW YORK — A day-old brother and sister were welcomed as celebrities yesterday as their beaming mother, thought to be the oldest woman in the United States to give birth to twins, showed them off.

Wearing a pink silk bathrobe, Aleta St. James choked up as she introduced her newborn son, Gian, and daughter, Francesca, at a press conference.

“This is the most incredible thing I’ve ever done in my life. This is a miracle that God blessed me with,” she said.

The single mother, who turns 57 tomorrow, delivered the twins by Caesarean section on Tuesday at Mount Sinai Medical Center. They were conceived through in vitro fertilization using donor eggs.


Train strikes car, killing five

GRANITEVILLE — A train slammed into a car that was trying to beat it across the tracks at a crossing yesterday, killing all five persons inside.

The Norfolk Southern research train, a locomotive and two cars used to measure the height and curvature of the rails, was traveling at 45 mph when it hit the car, said Capt. Karl McClary of the South Carolina Highway Patrol.

All five victims appeared to be adults, Capt. McClary said.

Rob Chapman, a Norfolk Southern spokesman, said no one on the train was injured.


Marine guilty in death of Iraqi

CAMP PENDLETON — A military jury acquitted a Marine major of assault and battery yesterday in connection with the death of an Iraqi prisoner from diarrhea and exposure, but found him guilty of two lesser counts.

Maj. Clarke Paulus faces dismissal from the Marines and up to a year in military prison instead of the 1 years he could have received if convicted on all charges. He was found guilty of maltreatment and dereliction of duty.

The jury quickly began deliberating Maj. Paulus’ sentence. Holding back tears, Maj. Paulus stood before the eight-officer panel and apologized to the Marine Corps and his family.

“I hope the press would have these charges reflect on me personally and not the Marine Corps,” he said, turning to members of the press in the courtroom.

He asked the jury to allow him to remain in the Marine Corps, saying he had served honorably and credibly for more than a decade.


Boy left on bus for second time

DENVER — A disabled boy who fell asleep on a school bus Tuesday morning was discovered more than an hour later, locked inside the vehicle parked at a district bus terminal.

Nicol Castruita-Rodriguez told the Rocky Mountain News that her son, Alex, a third-grader at Kaiser Elementary School, was fine. She was not.

“I was pretty hysterical,” said the mother, adding that it was the second time the 9-year-old has been left on a school bus.


Charities ordered to pay in teen’s death

CHICAGO — A federal judge yesterday found two U.S.-based Islamic charities and a purported fund-raiser for the Palestinian militant group Hamas liable for damages in the 1996 shooting death of an American teenager in Israel.

A jury trial is set to start Dec. 1 to determine the amount of damages in the $300 million lawsuit filed by the parents of David Boim, 17, who was fatally shot while awaiting a bus in the West Bank.

In a 107-page opinion, Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys held Texas-based Holy Land Foundation and another charity, the Islamic Association for Palestine, liable for damages in the shooting for knowingly aiding Hamas.

Judge Keys also held Mohammed Salah, a Chicago man under indictment in a suspected Hamas fund-raising conspiracy, liable for damages in the May 13, 1996, shooting.


Canadian minister says cheap drugs limited

BOSTON — Canada’s health minister said yesterday that his country “cannot be the drugstore of the United States” — a warning that comes as several states are pushing to buy low-cost prescription drugs north of the border.

“It is difficult for me to conceive of how a small country like Canada could meet the prescription drug needs of approximately 280 million Americans without putting our own supply at serious risk,” Health Minister Ujjal Dosanjh said in a prepared text for a speech at Harvard Medical School.

Business has been booming for Canadian Internet pharmacies that take orders from Americans looking to buy Canadian drugs made less expensive by government price controls.


Man gets death for bank slayings

MADISON — One of four men convicted in a botched 2002 bank robbery in which four employees and a customer were killed was sentenced to death yesterday.

Jorge Galindo, 23, was sentenced by a three-judge panel, which supported a Madison County jury’s decision in December that he should die in the state’s electric chair.

District Judges Robert Ensz, Jeffre Cheuvront and Kristine Cecava rejected defense arguments that Galindo’s judgment had been clouded by methamphetamine and that he had faced pressure from ringleader Jose Sandoval.

Juries also found Sandoval and co-defendant Erick Vela eligible for the death penalty, and they await sentencing hearings. A fourth man, Gabriel Rodriguez, convicted of acting as a lookout, was sentenced to five consecutive life terms.


Girl’s recipe fetches $25,000 scholarship

RUTHERFORDTON — Ten-year-old Bronwyn Fadem has cooked up $25,000 for college.

The fifth-grader, who likes to cook for her friends, won a $25,000 scholarship with a lasagna dish that impressed a celebrity chef. Bronwyn learned she had won the contest sponsored by the laundry detergent All while appearing on “The Tony Danza Show” on Tuesday.

Classmates at Rutherfordton Elementary School watched Bronwyn cook her Lasagna Roll-Ups, an original recipe, on Monday and then tuned in again the next day as she explained the recipe to Mr. Danza and Food Network host Rachel Ray.

Bronwyn had said that if she won the contest she would use the scholarship to attend the Savannah College of Art and Design or the University of Florida.


Governor to end troubled TennCare

NASHVILLE — Gov. Phil Bredesen announced yesterday that the state plans to dissolve TennCare, cutting up to 430,000 people from the financially troubled supplemental Medicaid program, barring a last-minute reprieve.

The governor held out some hope for saving the program, announcing that he will try for seven more days to work out an agreement with legal advocates who have won several court decisions about the level of health care the state must provide to TennCare enrollees.

But he said it was unlikely that an agreement could be reached with the advocates in seven days.

Mr. Bredesen, a Democrat, ran for governor two years ago on a promise to fix TennCare, whose $7.8 billion price tag was projected to mushroom in coming years, or to end it.


Hispanic appointed to state’s high court

HOUSTON — Gov. Rick Perry appointed David Medina, his general counsel, to the Supreme Court. Mr. Medina, 46, becomes the second Hispanic among five appointments the Republican governor has made to the state’s highest court.

Mr. Medina fills the vacancy created by Mr. Perry’s appointment of Wallace Jefferson, who is set to become the court’s chief justice this week. He will be the first black jurist to serve in that post.


Record number of votes cast

MONTPELIER — A record 314,200 voters cast ballots in the elections last week, the secretary of state’s office said. Officially, that translates into 71 percent of the state’s voter roll.

The number beats the 297,000 votes cast in 2000. However, the percentage of registered voters isn’t a record. In 1992, 76 percent of registered voters cast ballots.

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