- The Washington Times - Monday, August 6, 2007


Man jumps fence outside White House

The Secret Service apprehended a Florida man yesterday after he climbed over the White House fence, officials said.

Justin Manuel Arrieta, 22, of Cocoa Beach, Fla., entered the north side of the White House grounds about 10:30 a.m. and was immediately apprehended by officers in the Secret Service Uniformed Division, according to Secret Service spokeswoman Kim Bruce. She said Mr. Arrieta was charged with unlawful entry and taken to the Washington metropolitan police’s Third District for processing.

President Bush was at the Camp David presidential retreat when the incident occurred.

Police out in force for anti-crime plan

Metropolitan Police officers will be out in full force again starting today, for two more days of the chief’s “All Hands on Deck” plan.

The plan is Chief Cathy L. Lanier’s alternative to declaring a summer crime emergency. Every officer on duty will be out on patrol. It won’t cost the city any extra money, officials said, because nobody is working overtime.

Chief Lanier said the program is good for public relations, which to her plays a part in successful policing.

This will be the third “All Hands on Deck” deployment. Police said the first two yielded a spike in arrests.

The deployment coincides with tomorrow’s National Night Out, which is designed to raise crime-prevention awareness and build relationships between the community and police.



Teenager rescued after fall into well

A Prince George’s County teenager was in fair condition yesterday after being rescued from a 25-foot fall down an abandoned well.

Fire officials said the teenager was walking in the front yard of a home on Abbott Drive and stepped on a piece of plywood. The plywood gave way, and the teenager fell into the well.

He fell onto some debris at the bottom of the well, and something there impaled his leg, causing a significant injury.

The fire department’s Technical Rescue and Confined Space Team lowered fresh air to the boy, and then a firefighter went down to treat him. The boy was put in a harness and pulled out of the well before being transported to a nearby trauma center.

The well was later covered with a large metal plate.


Man charged in kidnapping try

Police have charged an Adamstown, Md., man with trying to kidnap a child from the back seat of her mother’s car.

It happened about 10:15 p.m. Saturday in the 500 block of North Market Street.

Police said the woman was waiting for her husband when an intoxicated man reached into her parked car and tried to unbuckle her 1-year-old daughter’s car seat.

The woman yelled for help and several people, including her husband, came to the car as she pushed away the man, who was identified as 32-year-old Joshua Daniel Holt.

Mr. Holt was arrested two blocks away and charged with attempted kidnapping, reckless endangerment, tampering with a motor vehicle, disorderly conduct and intoxicated-endangering a child.

He was being held at the Frederick County Adult Detention Center on $100,000 bail.


Well failures prompt calls for state aid

Two months after wells around Somerset and Wicomico counties started going dry, local officials say the well failures are spreading, and they’ve asked the state to step in and help.

The Salisbury, Md., Daily Times reports that more than 120 wells have gone dry since May. The affected homes relied on water from the Manokin aquifer, and officials are trying to figure out what’s causing the problem.

Local officials have identified two possible culprits: a sod farm and a state prison that are drawing water from the aquifer. As the dry-well situation gets worse, officials say the state needs to step in and help residents with no water.

Somerset County commissioners have asked Gov. Martin O’Malley to halt the use of the Manokin aquifer by the sod farm and the Eastern Correctional Institution in Princess Anne, which is pumping more than 10 times what is permitted.



Program to boost state’s flower sales

A Virginia man is seeing his dream of boosting the state’s flower business.

Andy Hankins is the alternative agriculture extension specialist at Virginia State University. Last year, he got a grant of more than $25,000 from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to help increase the number of flowers produced and sold locally in the state.

About 98 percent of the fresh flowers sold in Virginia are produced by farmers from other areas, many as far away as South America and Europe.

Mr. Hankins worked with about a dozen volunteers to grow flowers across the state. Last week, he met with growers and potential growers in Sussex County.

Mr. Hankins said the potential for big business is there. He pointed to the fact that there are more than 100 florists in Richmond alone and only five big flower wholesalers. Supermarket chains also sell flowers, and he says they like to have something grown locally.


Town, utility argue over road costs

Road improvements are becoming a concern around Smith Mountain Lake.

Officials from Appalachian Power and local and state governments agree that improvements to the roads surrounding this vacation attraction are needed. But they disagree over who should pay for them.

The improvements are a pressing issue because of new residential developments and the growth of tourism at the lake. More than 2.5 million visitors came to Smith Mountain Lake this past year.

The Virginia Department of Transportation has been studying the roads at the lake since last summer. The recommendations will be used in the transportation department’s six-year improvement plan for the area.

Appalachian Power holds a federal license to operate a hydroelectric plant there and is going through a review process to renew the license.

Because of that, state and local officials are trying to work out an agreement that would have the utility pay for some of the maintenance and improvement costs of the roads.


NASA tests lunar habitats

If astronauts ever spend some time on the moon, they could be sheltered in surface structures being tested at NASA’s Langley Research Center.

As early as 2020, NASA plans to house crews in the first lunar outpost before establishing a colony to use as a launching point for eventual missions to Mars.

An early model of the inflatable habitat is 20 feet high, 12 feet wide and covered in nylon webbing.

Langley is evaluating a model from a Delaware company that has manufactured spacesuits for NASA. It has a $3 million grant from NASA for developing habitats.

Later this year, engineers will investigate how multiple layers of space-age fabrics might withstand lunar temperatures and how to keep moon dust out.

From wire dispatches and staff reports



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