- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 12, 2006


Cafritz to quit public school board

The president of the D.C. Public School Board has decided not to seek re-election in November.

Peggy Cooper Cafritz told The Washington Post she wants to spend more time with her 14-year-old son and resume taking in foster children.

Mrs. Cafritz said much of what she set out to do, including modernizing schools, establishing new academic standards and getting rid of uncertified teachers, is already in the works and that it’s someone else’s turn to fight the battle.

D.C. Council member Kathy Patterson, who chairs the Education, Libraries and Recreation Committee, said Mrs. Cafritz can be erratic, but “always has the best interest of children at heart.”

Mrs. Cafritz, 59, was elected president in November 2000 as the federally appointed D.C. financial control board was about to relinquish its authority over the school system and put the school board back in charge.

Barry leaves city after sentencing

Hours after being sentenced Thursday for failing to file income tax returns, former Mayor Marion Barry was on a plane for New Orleans.

Sources told the Associated Press that Mr. Barry is there on previously scheduled business. His lawyers obtained at least two copies of a travel authorization form from federal probation officials before leaving U.S. District Court, when Mr. Barry received three years probation.

Mr. Barry was seen celebrating at a New Orleans nightspot Thursday night, where friends were marking his birthday. He turned 70 on Monday.

Mr. Barry pleaded guilty last year to failing to file his 2000 federal and D.C. tax returns. He now owes $246,000 in delinquent taxes, plus penalties and interest. The former four-term mayor and Ward 8 councilman tested positive for cocaine and marijuana in a drug test, administered three weeks after his guilty plea.

Woman’s cigarette started fatal fire

The fire that killed a 77-year-old woman Friday night inside her assisted-living apartment started when she was smoking in her wheelchair, according to a D.C. fire department spokesman.

The spokesman said the victim, Amanda McDonald, dropped the cigarette and caught her clothes on fire inside her second-floor apartment in the R.L. Walker facility in the 2200 block of Savannah Street Southeast. She died after being rescued and taken to a hospital for burns and smoke inhalation. The damage to the apartment is estimated at $10,000.



Toddler survives 2-story fall

A Loudoun County toddler fell Friday from a second-story window at a home in the 22700 block of Allison Way.

The incident occurred at about 4 p.m. when the 15 month old was apparently leaning against a screen. She landed on a brick patio and was flown to Inova Fairfax Hospital where she is listed in stable condition. The girl is expected to recover.



Apparent joy ride ends in a pond

Montgomery County authorities found a car yesterday morning submerged in a pond near the 15th hole of Needwood Golf Course.

Police said the car may have been stolen and landed in the pond at the end of a joy ride.

A county fire and rescue department spokesman said no victims were found during a precautionary search of the area and the pond.

The last nine holes of the 18-hole golf course were closed while the car was removed from the pond.


Tot drowns in bathtub

State police in Carroll County are investigating a 2-year-old girl drowning Friday night in a bathtub.

Police say the girl was taking a bath with her 4-year-old sister in an apartment. The parental guardian took the older one to another room to be dressed by another adult. When the guardian returned to the bathroom, the victim was floating face down in the tub.

The girl did not respond to cardiopulmonary resuscitation or paramedics’ attempts to revive her. No charges have been filed. Investigators are looking into the possibility that a pre-existing medical condition led to the drowning.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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