- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 10, 2006


Gallaudet president praises successor

The outgoing president of Gallaudet University says he has confidence in the person the school’s board of trustees has picked to replace him.

Speaking yesterday at the National Press Club, I. King Jordan said Jane K. Fernandes “has outstanding qualities and credentials” to be president of the nation’s only liberal arts college for the deaf.

Mr. Jordan said Mrs. Fernandes has a plan to raise academic standards and recruit high-qualified and diverse students and works well under pressure.

Students, faculty and alumni have been protesting against Mrs. Fernandes, saying she has not done a good job as the school’s provost.

Others complain that the selection process was not diverse enough, because all three finalists were white.

The board of the trustees has said it will not change its decision.

Human ashes found at Vietnam memorial

Hazardous materials crews were called to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial yesterday morning for reports of a hazardous substance.

A powdery substance found sprinkled along the site turned out to be human ashes, fire department spokesman Alan Etter said.

The ashes were in a small pile near the middle of the memorial wall. Mr. Etter said he could not recall another such incident.

U.S. Park Police are investigating because placing human remains on public property is not allowed, Mr. Etter said.

Emergency crews were called to the memorial just before 8 a.m.



Frederick prosecutor running for state office

Frederick County State’s Attorney Scott L. Rolle made it official yesterday that he is a candidate for state attorney general.

Mr. Rolle, 44, a Republican, said he would make protecting children from sexual predators his priority as the state’s top law-enforcement official.

Mr. Rolle, a married father of three, also pledged to push for comprehensive anti-gang legislation and said he would seek to abolish parole for murderers, rapists and child molesters.

Mr. Rolle made his announcement at several stops in the state. He began in Frederick, then went to Rockville, where he was joined by Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele and about 50 supporters.

Mr. Ehrlich said Mr Rolle, who has been Frederick County’s top prosecutor for 12 years, is a proven winner who is well-known in Western Maryland and who soon will be familiar to voters statewide.

Mr. Rolle’s announcement came the day after Attorney General J. Joseph Curran said he will retire at the end of his term. Mr. Curran is the longest-serving attorney general in Maryland history, having held that post for 20 years.


Pawned laptop leads to pornography arrest

A 45-year-old Bel Air man was charged with child pornography after pawning a laptop that contained images of the man engaged in sexual conduct with a 5-year-old girl, federal prosecutors announced yesterday.

Brian Dotson was arrested after he was identified as the man in the images, partially through a tattoo of a cartoon character on his left bicep, the U.S. attorney’s office said.

The abuse is thought to have occurred from March to October of last year. Investigators contacted the girl’s parents, who said she had been to Mr. Dotson’s apartment several times, prosecutors said.

In addition to the federal child pornography charges, Mr. Dotson has been charged in Harford County with sexual abuse and rape. He faces up to 30 years in prison on the federal charges.


Anne Arundel executive runs for comptroller

Anne Arundel County Executive Janet S. Owens began her campaign for state comptroller yesterday morning with an announcement at Baldwin Hall, the same place where she announced her candidacy for county executive in 1998.

Her entry into the race sets up a three-way Democratic Party primary with incumbent William Donald Schaefer and Montgomery County Delegate Peter Franchot.

Mrs. Owens, 62, is barred by law from seeking a third term as county executive and had been considering running either for comptroller or Congress.


Woman gets 18 months for Medicaid fraud

The former owner of an assisted-living facility in Millersville was ordered to serve 18 months of house arrest for Medicaid fraud and the neglect of an elderly patient.

Erlinda Sarabia, 69, was sentenced Friday after pleading guilty. She also was ordered to repay the state more than $17,000 in Medicaid payments.

She was the owner of Millersville Home Care, which was closed after inspections in 2003 revealed six cases of neglect. One patient had infected bedsores and died three days after she was hospitalized. Another patient also had to be hospitalized.



University names school’s first provost

Ivelaw Lloyd Griffith, dean of the Honors College at Florida International University, yesterday was named Radford University’s first provost in its 96-year history.

“He is a visionary leader,” Mark Rosenberg, chancellor of Florida’s state university system and former provost at FIU, said of Mr. Griffith. “Virginia’s gain is Florida’s loss.”

As provost, Mr. Griffith will serve a key role in university President Penelope Kyle’s Cabinet and will head the academic affairs division. The university’s seven deans and its librarian will report to him.

He was chosen from a pool of 78 applicants.


Fake sale, fake death nets fraud, theft plea

A mortgage loan underwriter who faked the sale of her home — and then her own death — pleaded guilty yesterday to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft, the federal prosecutor’s office said.

Kym Salisha Saloman, 43, faces up to 22 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 when she is sentenced by U.S. District Judge Richard L. Williams on Aug. 23.

Saloman worked for GE Mortgage Contract Services Inc., which underwrites home loans for lenders nationwide. U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg said Saloman used two sets of aliases and stolen Social Security numbers to pose as both buyer and seller of her owRichmond home, prompting Ivanhoe Finance Inc. to wire her nearly $300,000 as proceeds of the sale.

After the lender caught on to the scheme, Saloman attempted to escape liability by faking her own death, Mr. Rosenberg said. Ivanhoe employees received a call falsely stating that Saloman had been in a car accident, then another call saying she had died from her injuries.


Shad could prosper with dam’s demolition

The Rivanna River north of the Woolen Mills Dam could see an influx of shad if the dam’s demolition takes place as planned this fall.

The 19th-century dam was built to power now-defunct mills. It is a stone wall across the river in Riverview Park, but it keeps shad from passing and going north.

Getting rid of the dam should give the shad more breeding room.

In anticipation of the demolition, the Rivanna Conservation Society, the state game department and other groups have worked together to release about 400,000 shad fry into the river this spring and last spring.

They hope that the shad will return up the river to spawn again.


Gambling equipment, cash seized in raid

Authorities seized more than $400,000 and gambling paraphernalia in a raid of three buildings in downtown Appalachia stemming from an investigation into gambling and corruption.

Special prosecutor Tim McAfee said 11 seizure warrants were issued for a handful of bank and investment accounts as well as safe deposit boxes. The buildings were seized in the raids Saturday and Monday, but no arrests have been made.

Mr. McAfee said some town officials received money to keep police away from the gambling operations.

The raid stems from an investigation late last year into irregularities in Appalachia’s 2004 town election. Prosecutors said 14 town officials and residents conspired to rig the race so they could benefit from illegal activities.

The mayor, a council member and a police captain were among those indicted by a Wise County grand jury in March on election fraud charges.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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