- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Deputy shoots teen carrying toy gun

PALMDALE | Authorities say a 15-year-old boy who was shot while playing with a toy gun pointed the fake weapon at sheriff’s deputies.

Los Angeles County sheriff’s Deputy Jeff Gordon said the boy was hospitalized in stable condition on Monday and was expected to fully recover. His name was not released.

Deputy Gordon said authorities received reports of someone on a bicycle brandishing a handgun Sunday in Palmdale, north of Los Angeles. He said that deputies spotted the rider and ordered him to drop the weapon but that the boy pointed it at them instead. A deputy then shot the boy.

Deputy Gordon said the gun resembled a black semiautomatic pistol and lacked the orange tip found on most toys to distinguish them from real weapons.


Volleyball team sues to keep program

BRIDGEPORT | Members of the Quinnipiac University women’s volleyball team are in federal court seeking a temporary injunction to prevent the university from ending the program.

The lawsuit asserts that the school has failed to provide female students with equal opportunity to participate in varsity intercollegiate athletics in violation of Title IX.

U.S. District Judge Stefan Underhill is being asked to issue an injunction blocking the university from cutting the program while the issue is litigated.

The team plays in the Northeast Conference. It finished last season with a 5-30 record.


Smoke from bottle at school harms 13

LOCKPORT | Authorities in the Chicago suburb of Lockport, Ill., locked down a high school campus after mysterious fumes from a bottle left in a hallway sent 13 students to a hospital.

A school district statement said the plastic bottle released black smoke, and possibly chemicals, Monday morning as students arrived at Lockport Township High School’s Central Campus.

Police are investigating.

A spokeswoman for Joliet’s Silver Cross Hospital, Tracy Simons, said 10 of the 13 students brought there had been released. The three others were in good condition.


Lawyers: Ex-soldier deserves death

PADUCAH | Federal prosecutors said a former soldier convicted of raping and murdering an Iraqi teenager and killing her family deserves a death sentence because the crimes were so heinous.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa Ford asked jurors Monday to sentence former Pfc. Steven Dale Green to die.

Defense attorneys said Green didn’t act alone, and that none of the other soldiers involved faced such a harsh sentence.

Green, a 24-year-old former 101st Airborne Division soldier from Texas, was convicted last week in the 2006 attack on a 14-year-old girl and her family in Mahmoudiya, Iraq.

Jurors are expected to hear testimony for much of the week before deciding whether Green receives a death sentence or life in prison without parole.


Man wants to be ‘Rockefeller’ at trial

BOSTON | The man who calls himself Clark Rockefeller wants to use that name at his upcoming kidnapping trial.

His lawyers argued Monday that jurors shouldn’t hear him called by his real name - Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter - because one of the charges against him is providing a false name to police. His attorneys say it would be unfair for his client to be called Gerhartsreiter when he hasn’t been convicted of the false-name charge.

Prosecutors said Mr. Gerhartsreiter kidnapped his 7-year-old daughter during a supervised visit in Boston in July after losing custody to his ex-wife. He and his daughter were found six days later in Baltimore. His daughter was unharmed.

Authorities have said the German national has used false names since moving to the United States in the 1970s.


Wife accidentally killed with chain saw

OTSEGO | Michigan authorities say a man working in his yard accidentally killed his wife with a chain saw.

They were trying to cut a tree Sunday when the man hit his wife in the neck with the chain saw.

She died at the scene of the accident, about 35 miles south of Grand Rapids.

Sheriff’s Deputy David LaBonte lives nearby. He told WOOD-TV he heard a cry for help and did what he could.

The sheriff’s department said it was withholding the couple’s names until other relatives are notified.


Lawyer pleads guilty to fraud

NEW YORK | A prominent Manhattan lawyer has pleaded guilty to defrauding hedge funds of more than $400 million.

Fifty-eight-year-old Marc Dreier on Monday pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud, securities fraud, wire fraud and money laundering. The charges carry a potential prison term of 30 years to life in prison.

Dreier headed his own firm, Dreier LLP, with 250 attorneys.

He was first arrested in Canada on impersonation charges after hedge funds complained that he was stealing from them. Freed in Canada on bail, he flew to New York City, where he was arrested by federal authorities at the airport.

Authorities say Dreier received $670 million between 2004 and 2008 from the sale of fictitious securities.


Nazi guard suspect deported to Germany

CLEVELAND | An airplane carrying suspected Nazi death camp guard John Demjanjuk took off for Germany from a Cleveland airport at 7:13 p.m. Monday, U.S. officials said.

Burke Lakefront Airport Commissioner Khalid Bahhur confirmed that Mr. Demjanjuk, an 89-year-old retired auto worker, was on board the chartered air ambulance. The jet apparently was to land in Munich, where Mr. Demjanjuk is accused of 29,000 counts of accessory to murder at the Sobibor death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.

Mr. Demjanjuk has denied the charges, maintaining that he was held by the Germans as a Soviet prisoner of war and was never a camp guard.

The deportation came four days after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to consider Mr. Demjanjuk’s request to block deportation and about 3 1/2 years after he was last ordered deported.

Earlier Monday, Mr. Demjanjuk appeared to be crying as was carried from his house on a stretcher and driven away in a private ambulance past a small crowd which had gathered nearby. Four agents took part in removing Mr. Demjanjuk from his home in an operation that was screened from public view by a large sheet.

Mr. Demjanjuk’s family has contended that he shouldn’t be deported because he is in poor health and might not survive the trans-Atlantic journey. His son said earlier Monday that an appeal in a U.S. court would go ahead even if his father isn’t in the country.


Yahoo wins round in nude-photo fight

PORTLAND | Yahoo has won a legal battle over removing nude photos that an Oregon woman said her boyfriend posted on its Web site without her knowledge or permission.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reaffirms that Internet service providers such as Yahoo Inc. are generally protected from liability for materials published or posted on their sites by outside parties.

Cecilia Barnes had filed a lawsuit in 2005 in Portland, Ore., saying her boyfriend not only posted nude photos, but also created a fraudulent profile and posed as her in an online chat room to solicit sex.


Robbery ringleader gets 117 years

TRENTON | A New Jersey man will spend the rest of his life behind bars for his role in a string of bank robberies that led to the death of an FBI agent in 2007.

Francisco Herrera-Genao, 24, was convicted in December of four counts of bank robbery, one count of attempted bank robbery and five weapons counts. He was sentenced on Monday to 117 years in prison.

Wilfredo Berrios and Efrain Lynn were also convicted. They are scheduled to be sentenced on Friday. A fourth man in the case previously pleaded guilty and will be sentenced later in the month.

Authorities said the ring of men hit four banks in central New Jersey before they were apprehended outside a PNC Bank in Readington. In that robbery, FBI agent Barry Lee Bush, who lived near Easton, Pa., was mistakenly fatally shot by a fellow agent.

The defendants couldn’t be charged with Mr. Bush’s death, but U.S. District Court Judge Anne E. Thompson was allowed to consider it when sentencing Herrera-Genao, and she did.


EPA to oversee cleanup of spill

KNOXVILLE | The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will oversee the cleanup of a massive coal ash spill in Tennessee that brought national attention to the environmental risks of storing the power plant byproduct.

New EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said Monday that the federal agency is taking charge and “bringing to bear its resources and expertise” under the federal Superfund law.

So far, the EPA has been assisting state regulators with the cleanup of 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash that spilled Dec. 22 from a retention pond at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston Fossil Plant.

The spill covered 300 acres with grayish, toxic muck and stirred a national debate on regulating ash facilities across the country.


Judge gets almost 3 years

HOUSTON | A disgraced federal judge in Texas has been sentenced to nearly three years in prison for lying about whether he sexually abused his secretary.

U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent was sentenced to 33 months Monday. He also was fined $1,000 and ordered to pay $6,550 in restitution to the two women whose complaints resulted in the first sex-abuse case against a sitting federal judge.

Kent could have received up to 20 years in prison after admitting to obstruction of justice, but prosecutors said they wouldn’t seek more than three years under a plea agreement.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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