- The Washington Times - Friday, April 6, 2007


Woman on horse charged with DUI

SYLVANIA — A woman used a horse to ram a police car during a midnight ride through town and was charged with driving under the influence, police said.

DUI charges can apply even if the vehicle has four legs instead of wheels, Chief Brad Gregg said Tuesday.

Police in the northeastern Alabama town received a call at about midnight Saturday reporting that someone was riding a horse on a street, Chief Gregg said.

An officer found Melissa Byrum York, 40, on horseback and tried to stop her, Chief Gregg said.

After ramming the police car with the horse and riding away, she tried to jump off but caught her foot in a stirrup, Chief Gregg said. The officer took her into custody and found she had crystal methamphetamine, a small amount of marijuana, pills and a small pipe, the chief said.


Dog returned home after four years

LEE’S SUMMIT — A Boston terrier named Mickey that disappeared four years ago from his suburban Kansas City backyard was found in Montana and reunited with his owners this week.

Cher Jarosz and her daughter Kari Mitchell thought they had lost Mickey forever — until they received a call from an animal shelter last week 1,100 miles away in Billings, Mont.

A microchip on Mickey helped the Billings Animal Shelter return him.

Kristal Ward, office manager at the shelter who said a woman found the dog running up the street and brought him in, called Avid, a company that makes microchip identification systems, and was given the name of a veterinarian clinic in Lee’s Summit, Mo. She then called the vet clinic and “the woman kind of started screaming.”

“She goes, ‘Oh my God, is that a Boston terrier? Oh my God, it belongs to Kari Mitchell. She used to work here.’ ”

Miss Ward called Miss Mitchell and confirmed that the dog was Mickey, she said.


Muslim appointed as police chaplain

NEW YORK — The New York Police Department appointed a young imam as its newest chaplain to counsel Muslim members of the force on faith and other matters.

Khalid Latif, 24, a Sunni, was appointed Monday as the city’s newest police chaplain and described a wider vision of his role in the community.

“It is my hope that I can use this position as a means to educate not only the members of the New York City Police about truly what Islam stands for, but also the New York City community as a whole,” Mr. Latif said.

Thousands of Muslims work for the NYPD, said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. Members of the department are not required to disclose their religious affiliation.

Mr. Latif, who has served as a chaplain and adviser at Princeton University and New York University, holds a master’s degree from Hartford Seminary and is an Edison, N.J., native whose family is from Pakistan. He is the second Muslim chaplain at the department.


Senate apologizes for role in slavery

RALEIGH — The North Carolina Senate apologized yesterday for the legislature’s role in promoting slavery and Jim Crow laws that denied basic human rights to the state’s black citizens.

Following the lead of lawmakers in neighboring Virginia, the Senate unanimously backed a resolution acknowledging its “profound contrition for the official acts that sanctioned and perpetuated the denial of basic human rights and dignity to fellow humans.”

Such an apology, said Senate Majority Leader Tony Rand, a Democrat and the bill’s primary sponsor, will help us “to try to be better children of God and better representatives of all the people of this state.”

“The state went out of its way to deny its people the right to life and liberty,” said Democratic Sen. Tony Foriest, who is black and recalled during the Senate debate the segregation he experienced as a child.

The North Carolina House would have to approve the measure for it to be formalized.


Teacher put clothespin on lips of noisy boys

AMANDA — A substitute teacher’s tool for silencing chatty kindergartners — clothespins — doesn’t wash with school officials.

Four boys said spring-type clothespins were placed over their upper or lower lips for talking too much in class, Amanda-Clearcreek Primary School principal Mike Johnsen wrote in a letter to parents this week.

Ruth Ann Stoneburner, a retired school nurse who had worked as a substitute for several years, confirmed to Mr. Johnsen that she had used the clothespin discipline March 26, he said.

She will not work again in the Amanda-Clearcreek district and was being reported to the state education department, Superintendent J.B. Dick said Wednesday.

Officials found out about the discipline after a parent complained. The students weren’t hurt, but the punishment isn’t condoned by the district, Mr. Dick said.


County, groups settle over jail program

SCRANTON — A county agreed not to use public funds for religious activities to settle a federal lawsuit over a jailhouse program that critics said mixed faith with vocational training.

The settlement filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court ended the lawsuit over programs that had been run by the Firm Foundation at the Bradford County jail.

Lawyers for Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania were among those representing six residents who filed suit in February 2005. The plaintiffs said the company’s employees evangelized inmates in a former work-release program and pressured them to pray.

Bradford County admitted no wrongdoing in the settlement.

The Firm Foundation program was the only vocational training program available at the jail, and the company’s arrangement with the county was unconstitutional, said Alex Luchenitser, a lawyer for Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

The program started in 2002 but ended three years later because of insufficient funds, said Steven Aden, a lawyer for the Firm Foundation.


Sago Mine survivor is a new father

MORGANTOWN — Sago Mine survivor Randal McCloy Jr. is a father for the third time — and the first time since he survived an explosion that killed 12 fellow miners.

Anna McCloy gave birth to Isaac Martin McCloy at a Clarksburg hospital yesterday, her father-in-law’s birthday. The 6-pound, 5-ounce boy is 19 inches long and was resting comfortably with his mother yesterday afternoon, family spokeswoman Aly Goodwin Gregg said.

“He’s just beautiful,” she said. “He looks just like Randy.”

Mr. McCloy, 27, of Simpson, was the only man on a 13-member crew to survive the Jan. 2, 2006, explosion and prolonged entrapment at the underground coal mine near Buckhannon. He inhaled carbon monoxide for more than 41 hours, and doctors have never been able to fully explain why only the youngest of the miners survived. Mr. McCloy still suffers some vision and hearing impairment, as well as continuing weakness on the right side.

The McCloys’ older children are 5-year-old Randal III and 2-year-old Isabel.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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