- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 28, 2005


Children dropped into deputy’s arms

LOS ANGELES — A mother and father who were caught in a burning apartment building dropped their two children into the arms of a sheriff’s deputy yesterday, officials said. No one was seriously injured.

Deputy Jeff Kim and a colleague were flagged down in the Watts neighborhood at 2:50 a.m. by a truck driver who saw flames coming from the building, said sheriff’s Sgt. Ed Luevano.

Deputy Kim first caught a 1-year-old girl who was dropped by the mother from a second-floor window, Sgt. Luevano said. Then the children’s father appeared and dropped a 9-year-old boy, he said.

The children and parents did not appear to be injured, Sgt. Luevano said, adding that the mother also jumped from the second floor.


Wild horses drag system

DOVE CREEK— The notion of wild horses roaming the American West might be more a national delusion than a reality, the Denver Post reports.

Almost 35 years ago, Congress proclaimed that the West’s wild horses were an American treasure. It passed a law in 1971 to protect them from slaughter, and a horse adoption program was established.

But the realities of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) wild horse and burro program are different. Roughly 32,000 wild horses and burros roam the range in 10 Western states, but there were, by October of this year, another 24,500 wild horses and burros in holding facilities awaiting adoptions that never occurred.

Of last year’s BLM wild horse and burro budget of $39.6 million, more than half, $20.1 million, was spent to keep the animals off the range and in these holding facilities.


Two wounded in botched robbery

FORT OGLETHORPE — An apparent robbery attempt at a busy Wal-Mart led to a shootout with police that left a suspect and a store employee wounded, authorities said.

George Curtis Hughes was charged with attempted murder, attempted robbery and other counts after he opened fire late Monday when a police officer asked him to stop as he was leaving the store, authorities said.

Mr. Hughes was wounded in the ensuring shootout, along with a Wal-Mart employee who was in front of the store, authorities said.

“He was just in the line of fire when the perpetrator opened up,” said Dave Scroggins, a Fort Oglethorpe detective.

Both were listed in stable condition yesterday at Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga, Tenn.


Police kill man with knife

NEW ORLEANS — Police officers fatally shot a man brandishing a knife in a confrontation that was partially videotaped by a bystander, setting off another internal investigation of the embattled department.

Monday’s daylight shooting on a busy street was the first involving police since New Orleans reopened after Hurricane Katrina. It follows the videotaped police beating of a man that led to two firings in the department.

A police spokesman, Sgt. David Adams, said yesterday that the officers who fired on the man were reassigned pending the outcome of the probe, but he defended their response, saying at least one officer’s life was in danger just before the barrage of gunfire.

Sgt. Adams would not disclose how many officers fired at the man, but said investigators found 10 shell casings on the ground. Witnesses said at least a half-dozen shots were fired.


Storm delivers 3 feet of snow

MADAWASKA — A storm that began on Christmas Day piled up more than 3 feet of heavy, wet snow on parts of extreme northern Maine before winding down yesterday.

Front-end loaders and large plow trucks had to be used to clear main roads for emergency vehicles, but many people couldn’t get out of their driveways.

“There’s a saying around here: You’ve got nine months of winter and three months of bad sledding,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Duane Wolfe.

At the Gateway Motel, phones were lighting up with calls from snowmobilers looking to visit this week.


Enron ex-official strikes plea deal

HOUSTON — Enron’s former chief accounting officer, Richard Causey, has struck a plea bargain with federal prosecutors and will avoid going to trial with the fallen energy company’s two top executives, said a person familiar with the negotiations.

Mr. Causey is expected to plead guilty today to one or more of the 34 criminal charges pending against him, this person told the Associated Press yesterday on the condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the discussions.

Mr. Causey, 45, agreed to testify against his former bosses, Enron Corp. founder Kenneth L. Lay and former Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Skilling, in exchange for a much lesser prison sentence than he would receive if convicted on all counts. The trial is scheduled to begin next month.

Mr. Causey is charged with fraud, conspiracy, insider trading, lying to auditors and money laundering for a series of schemes prosecutors say were intended to fool investors into thinking Enron was financially healthy. The company imploded in late 2001.


Trapped man kills himself

CAMANO ISLAND — A disabled man who was injured when a windblown tree crushed his trailer killed himself as he lay trapped in the wreckage on Christmas Day, authorities said.

The injuries that Richard Payne suffered when the tree fell early Sunday were not life-threatening, Island County Coroner Robert Bishop said Monday. The cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Mr. Bishop said.

A sheriff’s spokesman said it did not appear that Mr. Payne had any means of summoning help. There was no phone in the trailer and no nearby neighbors in the remote wooded area at the south end of Camano Island.

A visitor found the body Sunday afternoon.


Youths beat irked motorist

MILWAUKEE — At least 15 young persons dragged a motorist out of his car and kicked and punched him, causing severe head trauma, after he honked his horn to get them to move out of a street, police said.

It was the latest in a series of mob beatings in the city.

The 50-year-old man was in critical condition yesterday and it was not clear whether he would survive, police spokeswoman Anne E. Schwartz said.

From wire dispatches and staff reports



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