- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 6, 2006


Man killed in shooting

A Southeast man, 27, was killed, and an unidentified 22-year-old male was wounded in a leg early yesterday morning in an apparent robbery in Southeast, the Metropolitan Police Department said. Police have identified the slaying victim as Harold Taylor.

A police spokesman said the victims were approached by two other men at about 6 a.m. on the first floor of an apartment building in the 2300 block of Pitts Place.

At least one of the assailants fired a gun. The wounded victim is now in a hospital in stable condition, the spokesman said. Police have not released his name, and no arrests have been made.



Bay Bridge, U.S. 50 crashes clog traffic

A five-car crash on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and a separate accident on U.S. 50 involving a Maryland Transportation Authority officer caused long backups yesterday.

The Bay Bridge accident happened about 7:45 a.m. on the eastbound lane of the bridge, said a transportation authority spokeswoman. Three persons were taken to an area hospital, and the left lane of the eastbound span was closed for about an hour.

The second accident, which involved the officer, happened about 10 a.m. on the right shoulder of eastbound U.S. 50 near exit 31. The spokeswoman said the officer, who was riding a motorcycle, was hit by a car on the right shoulder.

Authorities closed all lanes temporarily for a helicopter to land and take the officer to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center. The officer, identified as Richard Lester, 34, of Pasadena, is reported to be in serious but stable condition. Charges are pending against the car driver, and the accident remains under investigation.

Officer Lester was patrolling the shoulder to keep it clear of traffic when a car pulled out in front of him and caused him to be thrown from his motorcycle.

The right lane was closed until 11:30 a.m. for accident reconstruction, and traffic backups continued throughout the day. The backup on eastbound 50 was still 9 miles long after 5 p.m. yesterday.


Lawsuit against police in federal court

A lawsuit accusing Baltimore police of violating civil rights by making too many arrests for minor quality-of-life crimes has been transferred to federal court.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed the lawsuit against the Baltimore Police Department and the state-run city jail. The lawsuit uses the arrests of five men to purport a broad pattern of police abuse. The five men are among thousands routinely arrested and held for hours without being charged with a crime.

The civil rights complaint condemns the practice of jailing residents for so-called quality-of-life crimes such as loitering, but in motions filed late last month, the city criticized the plaintiffs’ “asserted right to harass others, to urinate in public and to trespass without fear of arrest.”

ACLU lawyer David Rocah said a hearing is expected on the complaint.


Hopkins apologizes to Singapore

The Johns Hopkins University has apologized to the Singapore government after a school spokesman criticized the country’s science agency.

About two weeks ago, the spokesman blamed the science agency for the failure of a Hopkins-Singapore medical research partnership.

The dispute became public when a Singapore newspaper reported July 22 about the impending closure of the Division of Johns Hopkins in Singapore.

The Straits Times newspaper quoted the unidentified Hopkins spokesman as saying the breakup would create a reputation issue for Singapore’s science agency, which had not met its financial and education obligations in the partnership.

The article prompted a scathing letter to the editor by an official of the science agency known as ASTAR, who was angry at the university’s apparent insinuation that Singapore was the negligent partner.



County leader moves to Maritime agency

Sean T. Connaughton, chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate to head the U.S. Maritime Administration.

President Bush nominated Mr. Connaughton, a maritime lawyer, in June to lead the agency that has a budget of more than $500 million and nearly 1,000 employees.

Mr. Connaughton won’t resign his county position, he said, until he is sworn in, expected by next month. He said his successor probably will be chosen during the general election in November.

He was elected to the Board of County Supervisors in 1999.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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