- The Washington Times - Friday, December 11, 2009


Bus collides with truck in Northwest

A Metro spokesman said four people were transported to the hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening Thursday after a Metro bus collided with a pickup truck.

The accident happened around 1:30 p.m. at 15th and I streets in Northwest Washington. Fifteen people were on the bus at the time.

Metro said it did not have any information about the driver of either vehicle.



Sentencing date set for Baltimore mayor

A judge has set a Jan. 21 sentencing date for Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon.

The Democrat was convicted last week on a misdemeanor embezzlement charge. Jurors found that she embezzled gift cards donated to the city for distribution to needy families.

Once Ms. Dixon is sentenced, she could be suspended from office under Maryland law. But Ms. Dixon’s lawyers intend to file a motion for a new trial, and Judge Dennis Sweeney has scheduled a Jan. 6 hearing on that motion.

Jurors deliberated for more than six days before reaching a verdict. Ms. Dixon was acquitted of three other counts, including felony theft, and the jury couldn’t reach a verdict on a fifth count.


State told to deliver food stamps faster

A Baltimore judge on Thursday ordered Maryland to deliver food stamps sooner to poor families.

Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams ordered the Department of Human Resources to comply by next year with a law requiring food stamp benefits to be sent within 30 days of request.

Judge Williams also ruled the state violated federal and state requirements for the timely processing of applications for temporary cash assistance and Medicaid for families and children.

Carolyn Johnson, a lawyer with the Homeless Persons Representation Project, said as many as 5,000 applications a month are delayed beyond what is allowed. State Human Services Secretary Brenda Donald said an unprecedented number of new applicants and staff turnover have slowed processing.


Trooper convicted of double-dipping

A Maryland state trooper has been convicted of double-dipping by working private security jobs while on the clock.

State Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced Thursday that Andrew Mohan, 36, was convicted of two counts of felony theft and five counts of misconduct in office. The convictions followed a seven-day trial in Prince George’s County.

Mr. Gansler said Mohan stole $3,200 from the Maryland State Police by working two private security jobs while on paid duty. Mohan also was accused of accessing restricted criminal records and other protected information for reasons other than his official duties.

Mohan will be sentenced in January. He remains suspended without pay from the state police. He had been assigned to the Forestville barrack.


Man arrested in rash of robberies

Authorities in Harford County have arrested a man who they think is responsible for a rash of robberies and thefts in Maryland and Pennsylvania.

William Grace Jr., 22, of Port Deposit, was taken into custody Wednesday in a cornfield in Darlington after a brief high-speed chase. Police said Mr. Grace was driving a stolen car.

The Harford County Sheriff’s Office said Mr. Grace rammed a state trooper’s car during the chase, but the trooper was able to use his car to prevent Mr. Grace from going any further.

Several agencies had been looking for Mr. Grace after identifying him as a suspect in a series of robberies this week at gas stations and convenience stores. Police believe he tried to tried to rob two stores in Pylesville Wednesday morning.


Hypothermia claims four since Nov. 21

The Maryland Department of Health said four people have suffered hypothermia and died over the past three weeks.

A Baltimore woman died Nov. 21 and a Montgomery County man died 7 days later. A man from Anne Arundel County died Nov. 30 and a Baltimore County woman died last week.

The department said autopsies showed that hypothermia was a contributing factor in each person’s death.

The department said lives can be saved in severe weather by preparing and using common sense and checking on friends and neighbors, especially if they’re older.

Hypothermia was a contributing factor in the deaths of 54 residents of Maryland during last year’s cold weather season.



Snow leopard dies of cancer

Mill Mountain Zoo’s 16-year-old female snow leopard Natasha has died from cancer.

The Roanoke zoo said Thursday that Natasha died Wednesday. The snow leopard was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma in November and the cancer spread.

Natasha produced several litters with Boris, the zoo’s male snow leopard. The kittens were placed at other zoological institutions.

Natasha had been at Mill Mountain since 1997.

Mill Mountain says plans haven’t been made to replace Natasha.

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