- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Church expansion includes bowling

WYLAM — Bowling lanes, playgrounds and other entertainment will be available at an independent Christian center in six domes being connected to the church’s 3,000-seat worship area near Birmingham.

The $16.5 million expansion at Faith Chapel Christian Center could be completed by spring 2007, officials say. The church’s main building, the Word Dome, sits on a 37-acre campus in Wylam.


Parachutist injured in jump off cliff

SCOTTSDALE — A man who parachuted off a 700-foot cliff was injured yesterday when his chute failed to fully open, authorities said.

The 48-year-old man was doing what is called a BASE jump — parachuting from fixed objects such as towers, bridges and cliffs. BASE is an acronym for building, antenna, span, earth.

The man struck the cliff before coming to rest in an area near Saguaro Lake, about 20 miles east of Scottsdale. He suffered a broken leg and was knocked unconscious.

The parachutist did not appear to be accompanied by anyone else. Most extreme-sports enthusiasts make sure they have backup on hand when attempting dangerous feats.

A former military medic who happened to be nearby tended to the man while rescuers rushed to the secluded area.


Terror suspects want charges dismissed

MIAMI — Two men accused of supporting terrorism by recruiting Muslim extremists are seeking dismissal of the charges, contending that jailers mishandled a Koran and conducted inappropriate searches of their cells.

Attorneys for Adhan Amin Hassoun and Kifah Wael Jayyousi said in court motions that jailers disrespectfully tossed Mr. Hassoun’s Koran on his bunk and left 8,000 pages of trial papers in disarray. The incidents occurred in May and June at a federal detention center in downtown Miami and amount to government misconduct and unconstitutional intrusion on trial preparation, according to the motions filed.

Mr. Jayyousi, a U.S. citizen and former assistant superintendent of Detroit public schools, has been in isolation since he was arrested in March and transferred to Miami. Mr. Hassoun, a Lebanese-born Palestinian, has been held in solitary confinement for nearly a year after two years in an immigration jail.

They are accused of conspiring in the 1990s to raise money and recruit Muslim extremists to fight in Bosnia, Kosovo, Chechnya and Somalia. They are said to have recruited Jose Padilla, a former Chicago gang member and Muslim convert who is being held by the United States as an enemy combatant.


State defends residency rules

HONOLULU — State Attorney General Mark Bennett says he thinks the state’s residency requirements for most state and county jobs are constitutional and will defend them in federal court.

A Florida man is challenging state law and the city/county of Honolulu’s hiring policy. He said he was rejected for three city jobs because he isn’t a legal resident of Hawaii.


Residents disagree with schools ruling

WICHITA — A slight majority of Kansans think the state Supreme Court’s demand for more funding for public schools overstepped the court’s authority, but reaction is mixed regarding whether lawmakers should defy justices, according to a poll of 625 registered voters conducted for the Kansas City Star and the Wichita Eagle.

However, the poll did find one point of agreement. Nearly two-thirds of the respondents said schools need more money.


Lack of sponsors cancels parade

ST. PAUL — A Fourth of July parade to mark the 100th birthday of the state’s Capitol was canceled.

A lack of corporate sponsorships doomed the event, said Bill Sands, chairman of the Capitol Centennial Commission. Instead, the state will hold a picnic and ice cream social.


‘Preppie killer’ faces quizzing on finances

NEW YORK — “Preppie Killer” Robert Chambers was subpoenaed again yesterday by the family of the woman he strangled in 1986, nearly five months after he reportedly ignored orders to answer questions about his finances in a $25 million wrongful-death case.

Chambers, who was in Manhattan Criminal Court because of his November arrest on misdemeanor drug charges, was handed the subpoena by an attorney for Jennifer Levin’s family.

Chambers, now 38, pleaded guilty in 1988 to manslaughter for killing Miss Levin, 18, in Central Park during what he said was rough sex. He served the maximum 15 years in prison and was freed in 2003.

After Chambers’ plea, Miss Levin’s family won a wrongful-death default judgment against him for $25 million. The family has said all the money it receives from Chambers will go to victims’ rights organizations.

As Chambers left court Monday through a back door, he said: “I was working until this happened,” referring to the drug arrest. He would not say where. He also said that the money he had was being used “to pay for representation in this case.”


Man said to grow pot in grandma’s garden

FAYETTEVILLE — Cumberland County authorities arrested a man who they say found a fertile spot to grow some illicit herbs — his grandmother’s garden.

Cornelius Shaw, 30, is charged with manufacturing marijuana that he reportedly grew in his grandmother’s back yard, the sheriff’s department said. He was arrested at her house Friday and was freed on $3,000 bond.

An off-duty sheriff’s deputy discovered the weed patch when he was at a yard sale. Investigators found 25 marijuana plants with a street value of $25,000, the department said.

Officials said Mr. Shaw told his grandmother he was growing tomatoes, and that she had no idea what he really was up to.


T-storms batter state; winds top 100 mph

BISMARCK — Strong thunderstorms battered sections of North Dakota yesterday as residents of parts of the state cleaned up the wreckage of grain bins, tree limbs and buildings destroyed by 100-mph winds from earlier storms.

A couple of small tornadoes were confirmed during the storms that hammered the state on Sunday, but they didn’t produce the major damage. The strongest wind confirmed Sunday was 103 mph at Hampden.

One man was injured by a tree that fell on his camper in a park in Walhalla, authorities said. Yesterday, the weather service posted severe thunderstorm warnings for parts of southeastern North Dakota and western Minnesota.

There were no immediate reports of damage.


Frugal teacher gives big to alma mater

HOUSTON — A retired public-school teacher who was so frugal that he bought expired meat and secondhand clothing left $2.1 million for his alma mater, Prairie View A&M; University — the school’s largest gift from a single donor.

Whitlowe R. Green, 88, died of cancer in 2002. He retired in 1983 from the Houston Independent School District, where he was making $28,000 a year as an economics teacher. His donation shocked family members and friends alike.

A cousin, Sharon Green Mitchell, said Mr. Green and her father stopped talking for a couple of years when Mr. Green denied owing her dad $6.76. On road trips, Mr. Green would divide the gas bill equally among the adults.

The school said Mr. Green’s donation will be used to establish a scholarship fund.


Police shoot man at courthouse

SEATTLE — Law-enforcement officers shot a man at the federal courthouse yesterday after he walked into the building carrying what appeared to be a hand grenade and shouting threats, authorities said. The man’s condition was not immediately released.

The man, with a backpack strapped to his chest, entered the lobby of the 23-story building shortly before noon, carrying what appeared to be a World War II-type grenade in his hand, police Chief Gil Kerlikowske said.

Witnesses said he tried to get past security, began shouting threats and then was shot when confronted by police and federal agents, officials said.

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