- The Washington Times - Friday, October 28, 2005

CALIFORNIA

Shriver remains silent on governor’s agenda

LONG BEACH — Maria Shriver refused to take a stand yesterday on the political agenda of her husband, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, saying, “We all know what happens to first ladies who shoot their mouths off.”

Her remarks came at the opening session of the California Governor and First Lady’s Conference on Women and Families.

In recent months, she has kept silent about a series of Schwarzenegger-backed measures on the Nov. 8 ballot that could undercut the influence of California’s public employee unions and the Democrat-controlled Legislature.

MASSACHUSETTS

Sailor rescued after storm

PROVINCETOWN — A 74-year-old sailor said being rescued by the Coast Guard was “the most fantastic feeling” after he rode out a powerful nor’easter on board a 33-foot sailboat.

Vincent Gillings, who has been sailing for 50 years, told WBZ-TV that he was knocked overboard during the Tuesday storm, but he was wearing a safety harness.

Mr. Gillings, an American, started sailing the Sara Gamp from Liverpool, Nova Scotia, on Friday bound for Gloucester. After hearing from his worried girlfriend on Sunday, authorities starting searching for him by air and water. A Coast Guard jet crew spotted Mr. Gillings’ boat Wednesday, and a helicopter was dispatched and lowered a rescue swimmer onto the boat.

DELAWARE

Hanging body mistaken as prank

FREDERICA — The apparent suicide of a woman found hanging from a tree went unreported for hours because passers-by thought the body was a Halloween decoration, authorities said.

The 42-year-old woman used rope to hang herself across the street from some homes on a moderately busy road late Tuesday or early Wednesday, state police said.

The body, suspended about 15 feet above the ground, could be seen easily from passing vehicles.

State police spokesman Cpl. Jeff Oldham and neighbors said people noticed the body at breakfast time Wednesday but dismissed it as a holiday prank. Authorities were called to the scene more than three hours later.

FLORIDA

Tropical Storm Beta forms in Caribbean

MIAMI — Tropical Storm Beta formed yesterday in the southwestern Caribbean Sea, extending this year’s record of named storms in the Atlantic hurricane season.

Beta is the season’s 23rd tropical storm, the most since record keeping began in 1851. The disturbance formed Wednesday night, and warnings were issued for the entire Caribbean coast of Nicaragua and adjacent islands. The storm also was expected to bring heavy rain across western Panama and Costa Rica.

Forecasters said it was not expected to threaten the United States.

Hurricane conditions are predicted in the next several days.

GEORGIA

Court upholds ban of voter ID law

ATLANTA — A federal appeals court declined yesterday to let the state use a new law for local elections next month that would require voters to show photo identification before casting their ballots.

The ruling by a panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals came eight days after a federal district judge temporarily barred the state from using the law, saying it amounted to an unconstitutional poll tax.

The state, hoping to win on appeal, had asked the appeals court to lift the injunction, but the court refused.

“We’re gratified all registered voters in Georgia can vote, whether or not they can purchase a photo ID,” said Neil Bradley, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, which joined civil rights and voting rights activists in challenging the law.

A driver’s license with a photo is sufficient under the law, but those who do not have a license must obtain a state ID card, which can cost up to $35. Gov. Sonny Perdue, a Republican, said such cards would be given free to those who cannot afford the fee.

HAWAII

B-2 design engineer faces spy charges

HONOLULU — A former design engineer has been arrested on charges of espionage for selling top-secret information related to the B-2 stealth bomber, the FBI said yesterday.

Noshir Gowadia, 61, was arrested in Maui Wednesday. The FBI said he had given information to three foreign countries about the bomber. The countries were not named.

Mr. Gowadia was a design engineer for Northrop Grumman Corp. for 18 years until 1986 and worked on the development of the B-2. He is being held in the federal detention center in Honolulu while the investigation proceeds.

The FBI said Mr. Gowadia had faxed a document to a foreign country on Oct. 23, 2002, that explained “infrared suppression,” a process that allows a plane to escape detection by heat-seeking missiles.

MICHIGAN

Bus systems save first seat for Parks

DETROIT — In the city where she died and the city where she sparked the civil rights movement, the front of the bus is reserved for Rosa Parks.

Detroit and Montgomery, Ala., are reserving the first seats of their buses as a tribute to Mrs. Parks’ legacy until her funeral next week in Detroit.

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick placed a black ribbon yesterday morning on the first passenger seat of one of about 200 buses where seats will be reserved.

In some buses in Montgomery, the first seat was being covered with black fabric and a photograph of Mrs. Parks was being displayed, the Montgomery Area Transit System said.

Mrs. Parks, the black woman who refused to give up her bus seat to a white man in Montgomery in 1955, died Monday in Detroit at age 92.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Catholics reach out with talks at bar

MANCHESTER — So, these two priests walk into a bar. …

No joke. A Roman Catholic parish has booked four talks at a local bar in an effort to reach out to twenty- and thirtysomethings who don’t go to church. Alcohol will be served.

The Ste. Marie Parish’s first presentation, “Naked & Without Shame,” was scheduled yesterday and was to deal with Catholic views on sexuality, contraception and marriage.

NEW YORK

Iraqi doctor jailed in charity fraud

SYRACUSE — An Iraqi doctor once tagged as a terrorism suspect and later convicted of conspiring to violate U.S. sanctions was sentenced yesterday to 22 years in prison.

Federal prosecutors had continued to argue that Rafil Dhafir had terrorist ties that made him a national security threat and urged a sentence of at least 24 years.

Defense attorney Deveraux Cannick had sought leniency for his 57-year-old client, saying he had done good works for patients and for Iraqis who suffered because of Saddam Hussein and the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

Dhafir was convicted in February on 59 counts including misusing $2 million that donors gave to his unlicensed charity, Help the Needy, and spending $544,000 for his own purposes.

OHIO

GOP donor indicted in campaign scheme

TOLEDO — A coin dealer and major Republican Party donor at the center of a scandal in Ohio state government has been indicted in a federal investigation into contributions to President Bush’s re-election campaign, his attorney said yesterday.

The grand jury was examining whether Tom Noe skirted campaign finance laws by having others donate money for him. Federal laws limit individual contributions to $2,000.

Mr. Noe’s attorney, Jon Richardson, said he did not have any details on the indictment.

WEST VIRGINIA

Baptists reject split from national church

CLARKSBURG — In a close vote, West Virginia Baptist delegates rejected a proposal to split from the American Baptist Churches USA in a dispute over homosexual issues.

The measure, introduced by the West Virginia Baptists for Biblical Truth, was defeated by a 391-325 vote at the West Virginia Baptist Convention’s annual meeting last week. However, the delegates voted 402-276 against reaffirming the state convention’s commitment to the national church.

The 1.5-million-member denomination has declared homosexual relationships incompatible with Christianity, but conservatives say some churches with more liberal stands have not been disciplined properly.

WISCONSIN

Cash spill stops traffic

GREEN BAY — Traffic came to a halt on a congested bridge after it started to rain $20 bills.

Morning commuters jumped out of cars Wednesday, hopped dividers and nearly caused accidents trying to catch the flying cash blowing from a money bag that accidentally dropped from an armored truck.

Of the $80,000 in the bag, about $72,000 was recovered, but almost none of it willingly, Lt. John Balza said.

Police said they are not sure how the money bag fell out of the armored courier owned by Badger Armor Inc.

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