- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 1, 2006


Two shot outside courthouse

SCOTTSBORO — A man shot two persons on the lawn of a county courthouse after a hearing in a domestic case yesterday because he disagreed with a children’s visitation arrangement, an official said.

The man and woman shot at the Jackson County Courthouse suffered head wounds and appeared to be in “very serious” condition, said John Tyson Jr., a Mobile County district attorney who was campaigning for state attorney general at the courthouse in northeast Alabama.

The suspect was tackled by a marine conservation officer wearing civilian clothes and apparently without a weapon, Mr. Tyson said. Officers “quickly joined in” to subdue the man.

The suspect was stopped moments before other people “would have been in harm’s way,” Mr. Tyson said.


Terror backer’s dad admits lesser charge

SACRAMENTO — A Pakistani-American pleaded guilty yesterday to a lesser charge rather than be retried on accusations that he lied to the FBI about his son’s attendance at a training camp for Islamic terrorists, court papers show.

Under a deal, Umer Hayat, 48, an ice-cream vendor, pleaded guilty to lying to customs agents about more than $28,000 he and family members were carrying on a trip out of the country three years ago. In exchange, prosecutors agreed to drop charges that he lied to the FBI and to recommend he serve no more jail time after spending nearly a year behind bars.

Hamid Hayat, 23, was convicted of supporting terrorism by attending an al Qaeda training camp in Pakistan in 2003 and lying to the FBI. He faces at least 30 years in prison.


O.J.’s daughter gets community service

MIAMI — O.J. Simpson’s daughter was sentenced yesterday to 50 hours of community service in a deal with prosecutors that stemmed from a confrontation with police during a fight outside a prep school basketball game.

Sydney Simpson, 20, did not appear in court, but her attorney accepted the deal on her behalf in a teleconference with a judge.

She was arrested in January 2005. Miami police said she repeatedly yelled profanities at officers called to Ransom Everglades School to stop a fight after a boys’ basketball game against Gulliver Prep.

Miss Simpson pleaded not guilty to resisting arrest without violence and disorderly conduct. The charges will be dropped if she completes the community work.


Sex offenders sue over city ban

INDIANAPOLIS — Six sex offenders sued the city yesterday to block a new ordinance that bars them from venturing within 1,000 feet of parks, pools and playgrounds when children are present.

The plaintiffs went to federal court to argue that the law is unconstitutionally vague, violates their rights to vote and attend church, and prevents them from freely traveling on roads that may pass within 1,000 feet of the affected sites.

The ordinance was approved May 15 and took effect immediately. It carries fines of up to $2,500.


Miners’ families picket closed hearing

HARLAN — More than a dozen family members of miners killed in a southeastern Kentucky mine explosion protested a closed-door hearing yesterday held by state officials investigating the blast.

Tracy Stumbo, the state’s lead investigator in the blast, and other officials began interviewing about 25 employees and executives of Kentucky Darby LLC. The May 20 blast at the Darby Mine No. 1 killed five miners; a sixth was rescued.

State officials rejected a request earlier this week that representatives of the miners’ families have access to the interviews and be able ask the witnesses questions.


Justices reverse death sentence

COLUMBUS — The Ohio Supreme Court yesterday threw out the death sentence of a man who strangled and stomped a 76-year-old man during a robbery, saying the killer’s chaotic childhood with abusive parents, along with other factors, outweighed the crime’s brutality.

The 4-3 opinion also noted that Troy Tenace, 44, expressed remorse when he confessed to police in 1994, and that if he receives the maximum sentence, he won’t be eligible for parole until age 96.

Any one factor alone would not have resulted in reversing the death sentence, but the combination of the three is enough to argue for prison over execution, the majority said.

The ruling sends the case back to Lucas County for resentencing.


FBI arrests senator’s aides

PHILADELPHIA — The FBI arrested two aides to a powerful state senator yesterday for reportedly deleting “electronic evidence” including e-mail to thwart a federal investigation of their boss.

Leonard P. Luchko and Mark Eister had been assigned to perform computer work for state Sen. Vincent J. Fumo, a Philadelphia Democrat. Both were charged with obstruction of justice, federal prosecutors said. Mr. Fumo has not been charged with wrongdoing.

Federal authorities said the inquiry focuses on whether Mr. Fumo “used his authority and official position to attempt to demand and obtain payments” from corporations to a South Philadelphia nonprofit. Investigators are trying to find out whether the senator “benefited both politically and personally from expenditures made by the organization,” court documents show.


Mormons send earthquake relief

SALT LAKE CITY — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is sending a 747 cargo jet stocked with supplies for the survivors of Saturday’s magnitude 6.3 earthquake in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, church officials said. The cargo includes eight truckloads of first-aid supplies, hygiene kits and clothing.

The Mormon church has roughly 5,800 members in Indonesia.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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