- The Washington Times - Monday, February 16, 2009


Roberts: Son did nothing wrong

TULSA | Oral Roberts said he doesn’t think his son, who has been accused of misspending funds at the university the evangelist founded, did anything wrong.

In a visit to Oral Roberts University on Saturday, Mr. Roberts, 91, said he and Richard Roberts didn’t discuss his son’s decision to resign as the school’s president in late 2007.

The younger Mr. Roberts, a televangelist, was accused along with his wife, Lindsay, of spending money on shopping sprees, home improvements and a stable of horses for their daughters at a time when the university was badly in debt. Both have denied wrongdoing.

The school had been more than $17 million in debt until billionaire Oklahoma City businessman Mart Green’s family donated $80 million and pledged to restore the public’s trust in the school. Mr. Green is chairman of the university’s board of trustees.


6 salmonella cases traced to Texas plant

PORTLAND | Six salmonella cases in Colorado have been linked to tainted products from a shuttered Texas plant owned by the peanut processing company at the focal point of a national outbreak of the disease.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment linked the cases to the Plainview Peanut Co. in the Texas Panhandle, the Oregonian newspaper in Portland reported Saturday. The Colorado victims were between the ages of 2 and 60. One was hospitalized, the newspaper reported.

The Plainview plant, owned by Peanut Corp. of America, had operated since 2005 without an inspection, authorities have said.

On Thursday, Texas health officials ordered the recall of all peanut-related ingredients shipped from the Plainview plant. Inspectors found dead rodents and feces, and preliminary tests by a private lab indicated salmonella was present.

A Texas health official confirmed Saturday that they knew come Colorado salmonella cases were possibly linked to the Plainview plant, which was shut down after the inspection.


Seton Hill student shot after standoff

GREENSBURG | A Seton Hill University student was killed by police after a standoff at a residence in western Pennsylvania, police said.

Police in Greensburg said they received a call early Sunday indicating that Joseph Frederick Briggs, 22, had threatened to harm himself and his roommates.

Police said three men and a woman fled the home after Mr. Briggs threatened them with a gun. He then fired toward the officers, hitting parked cars and a house. Several residences were evacuated, and campus buildings were locked down.

Police said Mr. Briggs was heavily intoxicated and stayed inside the barricaded home for about three hours. Authorities said he was later fatally shot by police.


Club fire victims mourned in service

WEST WARWICK | The survivors of a nightclub fire and relatives of the those who died in the 2003 blaze gathered Sunday to recite the names of the dead and honor them with 100 seconds of silence, one second for each victim.

Ken Fletcher, whose stepdaughter Tracy Romanoff died in the fire, said the tragedy was “something you’re never going to forget.”

Some mourners noted that the number of people coming to pay their respects has shrunk as years go by. Lawsuits resulting from the fire also have delayed work on a memorial at the lot where the club once stood.

The Station nightclub in West Warwick caught on fire Feb. 20, 2003, when pyrotechnics used by the rock band Great White ignited packaging foam used as soundproofing on the building’s walls and ceiling. More than 200 people were injured.


Falling debris reported across state

DALLAS | The Federal Aviation Administration has received numerous reports of falling debris across Texas, which could be related to a recent satellite collision.

Some of the callers reported about midmorning Sunday what looked like a fireball in the sky.

FAA spokesman Roland Herwig said officials suspect the debris could be related to the collision, but he said that had not been confirmed.

The FAA notified pilots Saturday to be aware of possible debris after a collision Tuesday between U.S. and Russian communication satellites. The chief of Russia’s Mission Control said clouds of debris from the collision will circle Earth and threaten many satellites.


Convicted killer backs judge

MADISON | Unsolicited praise from a convicted cop killer isn’t the kind of endorsement that a judge with a tough law enforcement stance wants.

But that’s what Jefferson County Judge Randy Koschnick got from former client Ted Oswald, a man convicted of killing a police captain in 1994. The judge is now seeking a position on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

In a letter sent from prison to the Associated Press, Oswald said Judge Koschnick, his former public defender, did “exceedingly productive and good work” on his case in 1994 and 1995.

Oswald is serving a life prison term for killing a Waukesha police captain after robbing a bank with his father. Oswald, then 18, and his father were pulled over after the robbery and opened fire on police with semiautomatic rifles. They also took a woman hostage and injured two other officers before they were arrested.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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