- The Washington Times - Sunday, January 7, 2007



Girl’s online story leads to dad’s arrest

A 12-year-old girl’s account on MySpace.com about her holiday with her father has lead to child-abuse charges.

The Florida girl wrote on the Internet site that her father and stepmother gave her cocaine and marijuana several times while she was visiting them in Kent County.

Police said when the girl returned home, her mother read the MySpace account and confronted her daughter, who confirmed what she had written.

The mother’s call to state police prompted a joint investigation with the Kent County Department of Social Services and the county’s narcotics task force.

On Friday, police arrested the girl’s 29-year-old father and 23-year-old stepmother in Galena. They were charged with two counts of child abuse and one count of contributing to delinquent conditions of a minor child. Their names were not released.


Police subdue man with Taser darts

An emotionally disturbed man barricaded himself inside a suburban Baltimore home for about 5 hours yesterday afternoon before a Baltimore County Police Department tactical unit used Tasers to subdue him, a police spokesman said.

Police initially reported that the unidentified 40-year-old man fired gunshots out a window of the home, but the spokesman said the man was not armed when the tactical unit went inside, and a gun was not immediately recovered.

Forensic investigators planned to examine the home to determine whether shots were fired.

The man’s parents called police after he began throwing things inside the home and out the windows. When officers arrived at about 1 p.m., the man refused to leave the house. A SWAT team and crisis negotiators were called to the scene, the spokesman said.

The tactical team went inside shortly after 6:30 p.m. The man refused to obey the officers, who shot him with Taser darts.

The man was taken to a hospital to have the Taser darts removed. No other injuries were reported.


O’Malley backs reform of ground rent laws

Gov.-elect Martin O’Malley, a Democrat, says he wants to play a central role in reforming Maryland’s centuries-old ground rent laws.

Mr. O’Malley’s chief policy and legislative adviser, Joseph Bryce, said administration officials will participate in a meeting of top legislators about the issue. The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday morning before the General Assembly convenes for its annual session.

Legislative leaders have pledged to make reforming or eliminating ground rents a top priority in the session.



Mother’s body kept for a year

A man kept his 91-year-old mother’s body in his home for more than a year after her death, according to the Arlington County Police Department.

Police so far have not charged the man with a crime. Officers found Ruth Wiken’s body in a bed in the home near 24th Avenue and North Quebec Street on Nov. 28 when they went to serve her son with an eviction notice.

A police department spokesman said nobody is sure how long the body had been there, but it was more than a year. The case is still under investigation, but no charges are expected, the spokesman said.


Cancer-court teen needs more treatment

The teen cancer patient who won a court fight to forgo chemotherapy needs more radiation treatments.

Tests taken in Hampton last month revealed swollen lymph nodes under the arms of 16-year-old Starchild Abraham Cherrix.

His mother, Rose Cherrix, says her son will go to Mississippi within two weeks to see his oncologist.

She also said the swollen lymph nodes aren’t as serious as previous tumors in his neck and chest.


Hollywood executives jailed in drug scheme

Two Hollywood businessmen have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute Ecstasy and commit money laundering.

Alexandre de Basseville, of Los Angeles and Geneva, was sentenced Friday in U.S. District Court in Alexandria to 20 years in prison. Co-defendant Bruno d’Esclavelles, of Los Angeles, was sentenced last month to 15 years in prison.

Prosecutors say the men used their film and TV distribution company, Limelight Films, to launder what investigators said were proceeds from drug trafficking. Authorities say they met repeatedly with undercover agents posing as international drug traffickers in Arlington, Los Angeles, Geneva and other locations, and negotiated to distribute Ecstasy pills and launder money. The two were arrested during one of the meetings in June in Arlington.


Elderly couple killed in crash

A prominent retired doctor and his wife — who had dated in college, married others and reunited seven years ago after their spouses died — were killed in a car crash, police said.

Dr. E. Gifford Ammermann, 72, and Wilma Ruth Ammermann, 71, died Thursday night. Dr. Ammermann was the former chief of nuclear medicine for the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salem, Va.

Family members said the two dated while attending college in Indiana but moved separately to Chicago, married other people and raised families — five children for him, three for her. Mr. Ammermann’s family moved to Roanoke County in 1972. Mrs. Ammermann worked as a psychiatric nurse in Ohio.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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