- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 29, 2009



Homeless man crashes plane

A homeless man trying to leave town in a stolen plane crashed the single-engine aircraft on a municipal airport runway without ever leaving the ground, police said.

Calvin C. Cox, 51, wanted to fly away from Frederick early Monday but ended up in jail instead, unable to make bail, authorities said. He remained in custody after a District Court commissioner set his bail at $10,000 on felony charges, including theft, burglary and trespassing.

Mr. Cox wasn’t hurt when the Piper Super Cub ran off a runway at Frederick Municipal Airport and upended in the grass at about 2:15 a.m. Monday, police said. A canine team tracked him into nearby woods, Frederick Police Lt. Clark A. Pennington said.

Lt. Pennington said police think, from talking with Mr. Cox, that he wanted to leave the Frederick area but that a motive was unclear. The Frederick police official said Mr. Cox had lived in a tent in the nearby woods and somehow become familiar enough with the airport and airplanes that he was able to get inside a hangar and start the aircraft.

“He was familiar with aircraft, but I don’t believe he was proficient in the operation of aircraft,” Lt. Pennington added.


Police find body in hotel

Prince George’s County police on Monday were investigating the killing of a D.C. woman, whose body was found in an Oxon Hill hotel.

Police said they discovered Laurie Ann Marie Waggoner, 30, of Northeast Washington on Sunday afternoon at a Comfort Inn Hotel on Oxon Hill Road. Officers responded to a call of an unresponsive woman and found Ms. Waggoner with trauma to her body.

Authorities are working to identify suspects and a motive.



Sisters die in car crash

Fairfax County police Monday were investigating a car crash that killed two sisters.

Police said Victoria Stefan, 25, and Elizabeth Stefan, 22, of Fairfax died early Monday. They said Victoria Stefan was driving on West Ox Road near the intersection of Lee Highway when she tried to turn onto the Route 29 ramp. She struck a jersey barrier head-on. Both women died on impact.

Police said speed may have been a partial factor, but they have not determined the ultimate cause of the crash.


Lottery expects sellout for raffle

The Virginia Lottery is projecting a sellout for this year’s slimmed-down New Year’s Millionaire Raffle.

A year ago, about 50,000 of the 440,000 available tickets went unsold. So this year, the agency reduced the number of available tickets to 330,000 and the number of winning $1 million tickets from four to three. By midafternoon Monday, about 150,000 tickets were still available.

Lottery Executive Director Paula Otto said Monday that a lot of people typically wait until the last minute to buy tickets, and the agency’s economists think the raffle will sell out sometime on New Year’s Eve. The drawing will be New Year’s Day.

Tickets are $20 each.


Officials: Bases merge to save money

Two Virginia military bases will merge next month, but officials say little will change in the short term.

Langley Air Force Base in Hampton and Fort Eustis in Newport News will become Joint Base Langley-Eustis starting Jan. 31.

Military officials say the process of combining operations is expected to last through October.

Col. Kevin Altman, commander of the 1st Mission Support Group at Langley, said the merger is not designed to reduce the number of military personnel or civilian workers at the bases.

Instead, he says it’s a way to become more efficient and save money in the long term.

About 16,000 soldiers and Air Force service members are currently stationed at the bases.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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