- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 10, 2005


Suspect caught in deputy’s slaying

PAISLEY — A man accused of fatally shooting a sheriff’s deputy and wounding two was captured yesterday after an intense daylong manhunt in the Ocala National Forest, police officials said.

Jason Lee Wheeler, 29, was wounded in a gunfight with the officers who captured him in the woods six miles from his home in rural Lake County. Police didn’t know the nature of Mr. Wheeler’s wounds, but said none of the deputies who captured him was wounded.

Mr. Wheeler, who had an extensive record of drug arrests, is accused of ambushing three Lake County deputies outside his home at about 9 a.m., as they responded to a domestic-battery call.

Deputy Wayne Koester died after being transferred to a hospital. Deputies Tom McKane and Bill Crotty were treated for non-life-threatening injuries at a hospital in nearby Eustis, officials said.


Reputed Klansman says he will be exonerated

JACKSON — Edgar Ray Killen, the reputed Klansman accused of killing three civil rights workers in 1964, said in a television interview yesterday that he will be exonerated because he had been attending a funeral at the time of the slayings.

Mr. Killen also told Jackson’s WLBT-TV that all he knew about the case at the time was what he had heard from press reports. The 80-year-old part-time preacher was indicted last month on state murder charges in the killings of Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, who had been helping register blacks to vote.

They were killed by Ku Klux Klansmen, and their bodies were buried in an earthen dam. The brutal killings focused national attention on the civil rights struggle in Mississippi, and the case was the subject of the 1988 movie “Mississippi Burning.”

Associated Press

An officer waved a car through a checkpoint set up in Paisley, Fla., after a sheriff’s deputy was fatally shot in the Ocala National Forest.


Rudolph attorneys raise ID question

BIRMINGHAM — Eric Rudolph’s attorneys are questioning a black man’s claim that he saw Mr. Rudolph near the scene of a deadly abortion clinic blast, citing research into the shakiness of “cross-racial identifications.”

In court papers filed yesterday, Mr. Rudolph’s attorneys asked a judge to allow testimony from City University of New York psychology professor Steven Penrod, who has testified in other cases about the difficulty that witnesses have in accurately identifying people of other races. Mr. Rudolph is white.

Prosecutors say Mr. Penrod’s testimony is unscientific and could “confuse, mislead and potentially usurp the jury.”

Mr. Rudolph is scheduled to go on trial late next month in the 1998 clinic bombing that killed a police officer and seriously wounded a nurse.


Witness says Blake showed him a gun

LOS ANGELES — A retired stuntman testified yesterday that Robert Blake took him on a tour of places where the stuntman could kill the actor’s wife, including the area around the restaurant where she was slain.

Ronald “Duffy” Hambleton also testified at Mr. Blake’s murder trial that the defendant showed him a gun he could use and took him to the Blake home and demonstrated how he could enter Bonny Lee Bakley’s living quarters, kill her and escape.

Mr. Blake, 71, is accused of shooting his wife on May 4, 2001, in a car parked near Vitello’s, a restaurant near Mr. Blake’s home.


Plane passengers quarantined in Denver

DENVER — Eighty passengers on a Frontier Airlines plane arriving from Philadelphia were quarantined Tuesday for more than 90 minutes at Denver International Airport after a woman became ill on the flight.

An in-flight medical consulting firm used by the airline was unable to determine the woman’s ailment, and a medical team that met the plane on the tarmac kept passengers on Flight 449 as a precaution, airline spokesman Joe Hodas said.

Passengers were allowed off the Airbus A319 after it was determined that the woman was not contagious.

Mr. Hodas said passengers told him the woman, who was taken to a hospital, had developed an unknown rash. Her condition was not known.


Girls get probation in tainted-cake case

MARIETTA — Two middle-school students who sickened classmates with a cake containing glue and hot sauce were sentenced yesterday to probation by a juvenile court judge.

The 13-year-old girls, who initially had faced attempted murder charges, were given sentences of nine months and a year on probation and must write essays to Judge Juanita Stedman on what they learned from the experience.

Fifteen students at East Cobb Middle School, mostly seventh-graders, complained of illness after eating the cake in November.


Scalping suspect surrenders to police

BOISE — A member of a punk clique surrendered yesterday for scalping another member, apparently as punishment for her disrespectful behavior toward women, police said.

The victim, a 16-year-old girl whose hair was cut in a mohawk, survived.

Marianne Dahle, 26, surrendered at the Ada County Jail on a felony arrest warrant for aggravated battery. She is accused of tying up the teenager and cutting away a 6-by-8-inch section of her scalp in the Jan. 18 attack.

The victim — who identified herself to reporters only as Sheila — said she underwent skin grafts and anticipated another surgery to repair the damage. Authorities did not release the girl’s name.


‘Smallest’ baby goes home

CHICAGO — A baby who may be the smallest child ever to survive birth has been discharged from a hospital more than four months after she entered the world weighing about as much as a cell phone.

Loyola University Medical Center said Rumaisa Rahman was discharged Tuesday weighing 5 pounds, 8 ounces, a far cry from her 8.6-ounce weight at birth on Sept. 19.

Doctors said her prognosis was good and expected that she would have normal physical and mental development.

The hospital said she is “the smallest surviving baby in the world known in medical literature.”


Human remains found in basement

INDIANAPOLIS — Investigators found human remains in a basement under fresh concrete after a brother and sister said they had killed their mother and grandparents, authorities said yesterday.

Kenneth Allen Jr., 29, and his sister, Kari Allen, 18, had been pulled over for speeding on Tuesday in Missouri. In the car, officers discovered bloody clothes and bedding, St. Charles County, Mo., Sheriff’s Lt. Craig McGuire said.

Miss Allen told authorities that she and her brother had killed them, dismembered them and buried them in the basement floor in the grandparents’ home, Lt. McGuire said. Mr. Allen later admitted involvement, he said.


Virtual school to hold 40 open houses

LAWRENCE — The Lawrence Virtual School wants to expand. It hopes to add to the 144 online students whom it taught in its first year by hosting 40 open-house programs across Kansas.

Students work mostly from home, staying in touch with teachers by computer. Parents must have regular parent-teacher conferences by phone, in person or by e-mail.


Car crash sparks building explosion

LANSING — A car crashed into an apartment building on Tuesday afternoon, rupturing a natural gas line and causing an explosion that destroyed much of the building and left the rest uninhabitable.

At least two persons were injured, and rescue teams planned to search through the debris for survivors or bodies, said Lansing Fire Capt. John Dyer. Authorities said they did not know whether anyone was killed in the 35-unit building.

April Garvie, one of the residents, said the fire destroyed all of her belongings.

The car’s driver was hospitalized, but his condition was not known, police said. A resident who jumped from an upper floor broke an arm.


Inmates outfitted in black and white

LIVINGSTON — Sheriff Clark Carpenter says identifying inmates should be a black-and-white matter, so he is color-coordinating uniforms based on crime.

The Park County Detention Center is outfitting inmates charged with felonies in black-and-white prison-stripe uniforms.

Mr. Carpenter said he got the idea on a trip to Canada, when he saw a work crew on the side of the highway in black-and-white striped clothing.

Park County bought 60 black-and-white uniforms to replace aging orange uniforms. Sheriff Carpenter said as more orange uniforms need replacing, he will purchase orange-and-white striped uniforms for those facing misdemeanor charges.


Restaurant charged in fatal crash

WAKEFIELD — The Pine River Steak House was charged with negligence in two felony indictments for serving drinks to two men who killed themselves and four others in a 100-mph crash a short time later.

Casey Davis, 24, and Aaron Parent, 26, left the restaurant with Davis driving and collided head-on with a minivan in September 2001.


Roosters seized in cockfighting raid

NEW YORK — Twenty-five roosters were seized from the basement of a home where most of the birds were being kept for cockfighting, animal-protection authorities said Tuesday.

The birds were discovered after a police officer saw a man carrying one of them outside. The officer questioned the man, who then led him to the Bronx basement, said the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

Fifteen of the birds carried scars typical of cockfighting, ASPCA spokesman Joe Pentangelo said. Those birds, which were missing their combs and had shaved chests and sharpened spurs, were taken to an ASPCA facility to be euthanized. The others were taken to an animal care center.

The ASPCA was investigating, but no arrests had been made.


National Guard troops return home

BISMARCK — About 90 soldiers from the North Dakota National Guard’s 141st Engineer Combat Battalion returned from Iraq. Officials say the rest of the unit’s estimated 475 members will return home throughout February.

In Iraq, members of the 141st covered about 250,000 miles, removing about 300 roadside bombs. Four of the unit’s soldiers were killed in the mission.


Construction to begin on children’s hospital

TULSA — Construction will begin in September on a 104-bed, five-story children’s hospital. The $56 million hospital is to be completed in spring 2007.

It will include space for medical and surgical procedures and pediatric intensive-care services. The pediatric rooms will be larger and have space for families to stay overnight, with access to showers, coffee makers, refrigerators and microwaves.


State to reduce speed limits

CHATTANOOGA — Transportation Commissioner Jerry Nicely said the state will reduce interstate speed limits within Hamilton County to 55 mph for trucks and 65 mph for cars, effective this summer.

The move is aimed at reducing air pollution in the Chattanooga urban area. Similar requests are pending from Memphis, Nashville and Knoxville.


Valentine post office helps send love

VALENTINE — Love is getting stamped out in this tiny West Texas town.

Valentine’s Day cards and letters have been coming to the town’s adobe-style post office for weeks as romantics from around the world send messages to get stamped with the distinctive postmark of Valentine, Texas.

With 7,000 cards already behind them Monday, Postmaster Maria Elena Carrasco and her part-time assistant, Leslie Williams, were greeted with a dozen brimming baskets of cards and letters left by the daily delivery truck that traveled 150 miles from El Paso.

“It reinforces my belief that there is a lot of love, and a lot of people do believe in God because that’s what love is,” said Miss Carrasco, who has run the post office since 1990.


Teddy Bear executive quits hospital board

MONTPELIER — The head of Vermont Teddy Bear Co. resigned from the board of Vermont’s largest hospital yesterday after coming under fire from mental health activists for selling a “Crazy for You” bear in a straitjacket.

“The recent controversy surrounding one of my company’s teddy bears will detract from my ability to serve effectively, and I cannot allow this to occur,” Elisabeth Robert said in a statement issued by the hospital, Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington.

The $69.95 “Crazy for You” bear, which comes with its own commitment papers, was designed as a humorous Valentine’s Day gift, but was branded insensitive by Gov. Jim Douglas and advocates for the mentally ill.

Last month, Mrs. Robert apologized to anyone offended by the bear, but said it would not be taken off the market. The company sold out of the bears last week and said it does not plan to manufacture any more.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide