- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 20, 2006


Police crack down on drunken driving

State and local law-enforcement officers from the District, Maryland and Virginia will participate in large-scale, mid-Atlantic effort to catch drunken drivers this weekend through Labor Day.

On some roads in Maryland, electronic signs are posted with messages warning about the crackdown. State police in several of the states have announced plans for sobriety checkpoints through the Labor Day weekend.

The regional crackdown has been named “Operation Night Hawk” and will include sting operations to catch underage drinkers.


Separation surgery set for Wisconsin twins

Separation surgery is scheduled next month for conjoined twins from Wisconsin who are being treated at Children’s National Medical Center in the District.

Mateo and McHale Shaw, born May 10, are the children of Ryan Shaw and Angie Benzschawel of Sheboygan, Wis.

The twins are conjoined at the lower back, buttocks and spine.

A medical center spokeswoman said the surgery is scheduled for Sept. 6.

The parents told a Milwaukee TV station that the surgery will be their most difficult day since the babies’ arrival. The surgery is expected to last 15 hours.



Offensive messages sprayed on homes

Authorities in Charles County are investigating an outbreak of vandalism in which racially offensive phrases were sprayed on homes and vehicles.

The incidents occurred between Friday night and yesterday morning in the Bryans Road community. The Charles County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the incident as a hate crime. Authorities said the perpetrators damaged eight vehicles, five homes and a mailbox and shattered the windows on two vehicles.


Trooper injured in Beltway crash

A state trooper was injured yesterday afternoon when his cruiser was hit by another vehicle on the Capital Beltway. The incident occurred at about 1:30 p.m. on the Inner Loop near Landover Road.

Authorities say the trooper was parked on the shoulder while investigating a minor accident when a passing motorist hit his cruiser.

The trooper was taken by helicopter to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore with neck injuries. Officials say his injuries are not life-threatening.

The other driver was taken to an area hospital.


Man charged after shots fired

A West Ocean City man has been charged with attempted murder after he reputedly fired two shots in the direction of children in his care.

State police said Britt Henke, 56, was drunk and became angry with the children, and he struck one of them several times before he began firing. A neighbor told the Salisbury Daily Times the children — a 5-year-old boy, a 7-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy — are the grandchildren of Mr. Henke’s common-law wife.

After the older boy was struck, he and his sister ran from the home and Mr. Henke took out a handgun and fired two shots — one into the ground and one in the direction of one of the children, officials said.


Camp David airspace violated by plane

The Secret Service is investigating an incident in which a single-engine plane violated the restricted airspace over Camp David Friday afternoon.

A Frederick Municipal Airport manager said the restricted airspace was extended from five miles to 10 miles because President Bush is staying at Camp David for the weekend. The extension began Thursday and will last through tonight, but “sometimes not everyone gets the word,” the manager said.

Investigators were at the airport Friday afternoon, interviewing pilots. The manager said investigators sometimes have difficulty finding the violator because the airspace is so busy.


Ivey awaits evidence on political scuffle

Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Glenn F. Ivey say he will wait to see submitted evidence related to a recent political scuffle before deciding whether criminal charges should be pursued.

The case involves campaign staffers for incumbent Rep. Albert R. Wynn and his Democratic primary challenger, Donna Edwards. The staffers scuffled briefly outside of a candidates forum in Largo on Wednesday night.

Mrs. Edwards said she plans to hand over witness names, videotape evidence and other materials.

Mr. Ivey said if that happens, he may have to recuse himself and his staff from handling prosecution of the charges because he knows Ms. Edwards and Mr. Wynn, and there is a chance his staff may know others who were involved.



Climatologist asked to limit use of title

Gov. Timothy M. Kaine has asked Virginia’s climatologist to refrain from using his title when conducting non-state business because of fears his views on global warming will be perceived as an official state position.

Patrick J. Michaels, a University of Virginia professor and state climatologist since 1980, has been a leading skeptic of global warming theories. While he thinks global warming is real and influenced by man, he contends it primarily is caused by natural forces.

The Associated Press reported last month that a Colorado utility raised at least $150,000 in donations and pledges to help Mr. Michaels analyze global warming research by other scientists.

A Kaine spokesman said that situation played a role in the request as well as the perception Mr. Michaels was speaking for the state on global warming issues.

Mr. Michaels told the Richmond Times-Dispatch yesterday he has not represented himself as state climatologist when presenting his views as a private citizen.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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