- The Washington Times - Friday, October 21, 2005

CALIFORNIA

Teen arrested in slaying

MARTINEZ — A 16-year-old has been arrested in the slaying of the wife of criminal defense attorney Daniel Horowitz, authorities said yesterday.

The name of the suspect was not released.

Mr. Horowitz returned home Saturday and found his wife’s body. Authorities said Pamela Vitale, 52, was beaten to death.

Investigators think the killing was related to a scheme that involved using stolen credit card numbers to fund a marijuana growing operation, an unidentified law-enforcement source told the San Francisco Chronicle.

IDAHO

Dog diagnosed with narcolepsy

CHUBBUCK — Skeeter the poodle can do one trick really well: play dead.

That’s because the 11-pound pooch has narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that is extremely rare in dogs.

His owner, Shari Henderson, took the dog to the veterinarian after Skeeter started falling fast asleep at the oddest times. Skeeter would be chasing a squirrel or going for a walk. All of a sudden, the dog would be out cold.

Skeeter is being treated with some human medicines — Ritalin and an antidepressant — in hopes he’ll be barking back to normal.

Associated Press

Contra Costa (California) Sheriff’s Department spokesman Jimmy Lee announced an arrest in the slaying of Daniel Horowitz’s wife.

GEORGIA

Homeless paid to join rally

ATLANTA — An activist who opposes illegal immigration acknowledged he paid more than a dozen homeless people $10 each to hold signs during a rally earlier this week, but said they agreed with his message.

D.A. King, who spoke at the rally, said Wednesday that he paid “14 willing American workers to let their voices be heard about illegal immigration.”

The people he hired are homeless and regularly congregate near the Capitol, Mr. King said.

The rally at the state Capitol was broadcast live on a local radio station and was designed to build support for passage next year of legislation that would deny state benefits to illegal aliens.

INDIANA

Church will be sold to aid storm relief

REDKEY — A Methodist congregation plans to sell its vacant former church on EBay to raise money for victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Bidding on the former North Meridian United Methodist Church is set to start at $1 and will run through Thursday, the Rev. Randy Davis said.

Mr. Davis is pastor of Redkey United Methodist Church, which was formed in December when members of North Meridian and Main Street United Methodist churches voted to combine. The new congregation uses the larger Main Street building.

Church members have voted to sell the old 7,000-square-foot church on the online auction site. They will donate the proceeds to the United Methodist Committee on Relief.

MASSACHUSETTS

Water pumped at troubled dam

TAUNTON — As another storm threatened to bring more heavy rain, authorities began pumping water yesterday from behind a battered wooden dam in hopes that the move would help it withstand the next wave of bad weather.

Officials fear another storm could overwhelm the 173-year-old Whittenton Pond Dam and send a 6-foot wall of water through downtown Taunton, about a half-mile downstream.

Mayor Robert G. Nunes canceled school for a third day in the city of 50,000 and told residents and business owners downstream from the dam to stay away. It was not clear when they would be allowed back.

The mayor had declared a state of emergency early this week when the dam, under pressure from more than 11 inches of rainfall this month, began buckling and shattering.

MINNESOTA

Polio virus infects fifth Amish child

ST. PAUL — State health officials on Wednesday reported that a fifth Amish child in central Minnesota has contracted the polio virus.

The child’s family is unrelated to two other families with children who also have tested positive for the virus, said Doug Schultz, a Minnesota Health Department spokesman. The families are all part of an Amish community near Clarissa.

State epidemiologist Harry Hull last week said he expects more cases of polio infection to turn up as community members are tested. Most were never vaccinated.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Court broadcasts arguments on Net

CONCORD — The state Supreme Court has begun broadcasting over the Internet video and audio of all oral arguments. That makes it one of 20 state courts to embrace webcasting.

In addition to offering live broadcasts, archived recordings of the proceedings will be available from the court’s Web site (www.courts.state.nh.us/supreme).

NEW JERSEY

Filipino pleads not guilty to spying

NEWARK — A former Philippine police official pleaded not guilty yesterday to charges he passed classified information about Philippine leaders obtained from an FBI intelligence analyst to current and former officials of that nation.

Michael Ray Aquino, clad in a green jail uniform and shackled at the wrists and ankles, did not speak during the 30-minute hearing before U.S. District Judge William H. Walls. The plea was entered by his attorney, Mark A. Berman.

The FBI analyst, Leandro Aragoncillo, has been in plea negotiations, leaving the prospect that Mr. Aquino could face the charges alone. Mr. Aragoncillo, a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in the Philippines, had worked in the vice president’s office at the White House as a U.S. Marine.

Both men were arrested in September and have been held in federal custody without bail since then.

PENNSYLVANIA

Court orders seizure of newborn

HARRISBURG — Child-welfare officials obtained an emergency court order to seize a baby just 24 hours after he was born, contending the infant would be unsafe because his father is a convicted sex offender.

The hospital, however, refused to hand over the infant so soon after birth, said a lawyer representing the mother.

The child was born Tuesday, and Schuylkill County Children and Youth Services was granted the order Wednesday. The agency expressed concerns that the boy could be in danger because his father, DaiShin WolfHawk, 53, was convicted of rape and sodomy more than two decades ago in New York.

TENNESSEE

Couple indicted in guard’s death

KNOXVILLE — A fugitive couple accused of killing a prison guard during a daring courthouse escape were indicted on first-degree murder charges and face the death penalty if convicted, prosecutors said yesterday.

A grand jury returned separate murder indictments against former prison nurse Jennifer Hyatte, 31, and her career criminal husband, George Hyatte, 34, in the Aug. 9 shooting of corrections officer Wayne “Cotton” Morgan, 56.

Mr. Morgan was killed in the parking lot of the Roane County Courthouse in Kingston, about 30 miles west of Knoxville, as he escorted George Hyatte from a hearing to a van to take him back to prison.

WEST VIRGINIA

Settlement reached in infant’s death

CHARLESTON — West Virginia’s health agency has agreed to pay $850,000 to the family of a 5-day-old boy who froze to death in an unheated home.

Jonathan Coffman died from hypothermia in December after his mentally disabled mother, Sherry Coffman, took him to her unheated home in Charleston. She was under the care of the state Department of Health and Human Resources at the time, the Charleston Gazette said.

The boy’s uncle, Timothy Coffman, filed a lawsuit against the agency claiming negligence, saying officials were aware the woman’s heat had been turned off but failed to check on the situation when she was released from the hospital.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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