- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 8, 2005


Tot found dead in day care van

LITTLE ROCK — A 3-year-old boy died after being left in a day care van for hours while temperatures were in the 90s, and the driver was charged with manslaughter, police said yesterday.

Marcellus Johnson was to have been dropped off at his home in Little Rock around 3 p.m. Monday, but van driver Rancocas Foreman skipped the boy’s stop, went home and parked and locked the van before leaving for his second job, authorities said.

Marcellus’ parents called police after 8 p.m., and around the same time Mr. Foreman remembered the boy, went home to check the van and found Marcellus’ body, police spokesman Sgt. Terry Hastings said.

Mr. Foreman, 22, of Little Rock, was charged with manslaughter because he could have easily seen the boy in the van, Sgt. Hastings said. The temperature reached 94 degrees Monday afternoon in Little Rock.


General resigns as charges swirl

SACRAMENTO — The commander of the California National Guard has resigned amid accusations that he failed to meet a Pentagon shooting-skills requirement and improperly tried to arrange a military flight for members of a Republican group.

Major Gen. Thomas Eres stepped down late Monday after questions about his conduct and qualifications were raised by the San Jose Mercury News and the Contra Costa Times.

In a resignation letter, Gen. Eres, 61, said it was an “ideal time” to leave “so that my family and I can start to enjoy a much-anticipated retirement.”

In the letter, the general did not address the accusations. Calls to the National Guard were not immediately returned.


Museum reopens after renovation

GREENVILLE — The Delaware Museum of Natural History has reopened after a nine-month, $5 million renovation.

The museum now has more exhibit space, an educational wing and a snack area. Visitors said the building is brighter and more open. More than 1,000 patrons showed up during the weekend reopening celebration.


Court overturns death sentence

ATLANTA — The state’s highest court threw out the death sentence of a good Samaritan who saved two persons’ lives, then wound up on death row for killing an elderly woman two years later.

Georgia’s Supreme Court ruled Monday that William Marvin Gulley’s attorneys should have presented the evidence of his good deeds to jurors. Gulley now will be resentenced for killing an 81-year-old Albany woman and raping her 60-year-old daughter in 1994.

“Whatever our own opinions may be about the sentencing verdict in this case … there is a reasonable probability that evidence of Gulley’s having saved two persons’ lives, at risk to his own life, would have changed that sentencing verdict,” Justice George Carley wrote for a unanimous court.

Gulley, who worked as a painter, was credited with saving co-worker Dan O’Connor from accidental electrocution by kicking the ladder Mr. O’Connor was standing on, breaking his contact with a wire.

Two days later, when Gulley went to visit Mr. O’Connor at a hospital, a mentally disturbed patient ran past him, smashed a window and tried to jump. With the help of Mr. O’Connor’s brother, Gulley pulled the woman inside.


City tops list for safe driving

CEDAR RAPIDS — Maybe it’s savvy civic engineering or just the courteous, slower rhythms of the Midwest, but a new study shows that motorists in this eastern Iowa city are the safest in the nation.

Researchers with Allstate Insurance Co. analyzed two years’ worth of internal crash and claim data to calculate the chances that drivers in 196 of the nation’s biggest cities would be involved in an accident compared with the national average.

Allstate, which claims a 12 percent market share of the nation’s auto-insurance policies, found that Cedar Rapids motorists average an accident once every 15 years, far better than the national rate of one every 10 years.

Motorists attributed the city’s high grade to a variety of factors, including an efficient interstate that eases trips across town, the city’s easy, grid-like layout and the slower pace and attitude of Iowans in general.

Washington, ranked 25th in the nation for population, is the least-safe city for motorists, with a chance of a fender bender once every 5.2 years.


Woman has baby after ovary transplant

BOSTON — A woman whose ovaries stopped working when she was a teenager has given birth to a girl after an ovary transplant from her identical-twin sister, doctors in St. Louis said yesterday.

Three months after the operation, the 24-year-old woman began having normal menstrual cycles and she became pregnant two months later, according to the medical team led by Dr. Sherman Silber of St. Luke’s Hospital.

The surgery, which doctors said would probably remain rare, came after two failed attempts at test-tube fertilization using eggs donated by her sister.

Details of the operation, scheduled to be published next month in the New England Journal of Medicine, were posted on the Journal’s web site, www.nejm.org.


Whistleblower lured away and beaten

SANTA FE — A Los Alamos lab whistleblower scheduled to testify before Congress was lured to a bar and then badly beaten in an attack apparently designed to keep him quiet, his wife and attorney said.

Tommy Hook suffered a fractured jaw and other injuries in the attack early Sunday, his wife, Susan Hook, said Monday. He was in satisfactory condition yesterday at St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe, said hospital spokesman Don Butterfield.

Mrs. Hook said the assailants told her husband, “If you know what’s good for you, you’ll keep your mouth shut.”

Mr. Hook has a pending lawsuit against the University of California claiming whistleblower retaliation. He had been scheduled to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee later this month about suspected financial irregularities at the nuclear-weapons lab.


Woman, 91, fights off attacker

TOLEDO — She’s 91 and uses a hearing aid and eyeglasses, but Katherine Woodworth wasn’t about to let somebody steal her purse.

She clobbered the would-be thief with her bag until he ran away, police said.

She fought off the man in a department-store parking lot Saturday afternoon, authorities said.

Police arrested a 20-year-old suspect and charged him with robbery, felony theft, assault, aggravated menacing, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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