- The Washington Times - Monday, January 29, 2007


Four killed in D.C. in five-hour span

Four men were killed in the District within five hours from Saturday night to early yesterday morning, D.C. police said.

The first homicide occurred shortly before 10:30 p.m. Saturday when officers found Deon Peoples, 29, of Northwest, dead in the stairwell of an apartment in the 1500 block of Seventh Street Northwest, near the Washington Convention Center. He had been shot.

About 70 minutes later, police in the 800 block of Yuma Street Southeast found Kevin Bradshaw of Southeast dead from multiple gunshot wounds.

About 2:45 a.m. yesterday, a man was killed with a baseball bat in the 1200 block of 11th Street Northwest. Police said the man reportedly was swinging the bat at several other men when one of those men grabbed the bat and hit the unidentified victim.

About 25 minutes later, an unidentified man was found dead from multiple gunshot wounds in an apartment in the 300 block of 54th Street Northeast.

A police spokesman last night said there were no further details in the cases.

The deaths bring to 15 the unofficial number of killings so far this year in the District.

An Oxon Hill man also was killed yesterday morning in his apartment.

Darius David Berry, 20, was found dead from multiple gunshot wounds about 2 a.m. inside his apartment in the 900 block of Marcy Avenue. Investigators said he was sitting on his couch in his ground-floor apartment when someone shot through his sliding glass door. Investigators are not sure whether Mr. Berry was the target or the victim of a random shooting.



VSU settles suit with professor

Virginia State University has agreed to pay $600,000 to a professor who said she was fired in part for holding conservative political viewpoints.

Harris Butler III, the attorney for Jean Cobbs, said the agreement was reached in a conference earlier this month.

In a November 2005 suit, Miss Cobbs said she was denied her rights to free speech and association when she was fired. She said VSU President Eddie Moore Jr. and Provost Eric Thomas retaliated against her for testifying several years ago in a lawsuit filed by a faculty member who said the historically black school discriminated against him for being white.

The plaintiffs won that lawsuit and awards of more than $1 million.

The current lawsuit also says Miss Cobbs has conservative political beliefs that “many of her peers and superiors at VSU find untenable for a professional of African-American descent.”

The agreement must be approved by the attorney general and governor to become final.



Explosions rock downtown streets

No one was seriously injured in a dramatic underground explosion and fire in downtown Frederick on Saturday afternoon.

Witnesses told the Frederick News-Post that a fireball exploded up from the sidewalk, and sidewalk grates were blown 10 to 15 feet into the air.

It happened shortly after 1:15 p.m. in front of Mirage restaurant at Third and Market streets. Flames scorched the side of the building, and the fire knocked out power to more than 1,300 Allegheny Power customers.

The fire may have been caused by a power transformer explosion, United Fire Company Chief Jerry Dorsey said.

The fire left ash scattered on the Market Street sidewalk and left sidewalk panels askew. Police also found debris on the ground across the street from the restaurant and on nearby cars.


Record 8,000 plunge into chilly Bay

The water may have been cold, but the fundraising was hot.

A record was set Saturday for the Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge when more than 8,000 people strode into the Chesapeake Bay from Sandy Point State Park.

The 11th annual event raised more than $2 million for Maryland Special Olympics.

Last year, a mere 4,700 people took the plunge.

A day earlier, 30 “super plungers” started a 24-hour marathon effort, going into the icy water once every hour for 24 hours on the coldest day of the winter.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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