- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 13, 2009



Death penalty rules require more review

A state panel has put new Maryland death penalty protocols submitted by Gov. Martin O’Malley on hold for further review.

Sen. Paul G. Pinksy, Prince George’s Democrat and co-chairman of the panel, said members have questions about the kinds of chemicals used in the state’s lethal injection process and what kind of medical expert should be on hand during an execution.

A hearing has not yet been scheduled before the panel, and it’s unclear whether one will be held this year or if the panel will wait until the legislature convenes in January.

A de facto moratorium on capital punishment in Maryland has been in place since late 2006, when the state’s highest court ruled Maryland’s lethal injection protocols weren’t properly approved by a legislative committee.


13-year-old boy hit by train, killed

Maryland State Police and Cecil County officials say an Elkton-area boy, 13, was killed when struck by a train as he crossed railroad tracks near his home.

Police said the teen was hit by an Amtrak Acela train as he crossed the tracks about 5:15 p.m. Sunday. The teen and two friends were returning to their homes after playing in a nearby wooded area.

County Emergency Services officials say Shawn Luther Kelly was pronounced dead on the scene.

The teen’s friends had already had crossed the tracks when police say he was hit by the southbound train that was moving faster than 100 mph.

Shawn was an eighth-grade student at Perryville Middle School.


Woman dies after falling from balcony

Police in Hagerstown say a woman who died after apparently falling from an eighth-floor balcony had told an officer about 30 minutes earlier that she was locked out of her apartment.

Sgt. Paul Kifer said the officer returned to Walnut Towers a half-hour later and witnessed the woman’s fall about 3 a.m. Monday.

Sgt. Kifer said there was no indication the 45-year-old woman committed suicide.

The complex for low- and moderate-income seniors and disabled people is run by the Hagerstown Housing Authority.

Sgt. Kifer said she apparently fell while trying to reach her apartment from an eighth-floor balcony accessible from a common area inside the building.


70-year-old man injured in fire

Officials said Monday that a 70-year-old man was in critical condition after a fire in an apartment building in Northwest Washington.

D.C. fire department spokesman Pete Piringer said firefighters found the man unconscious on the lower level of the building on 40th Place after being called to the fire about 10 a.m. Monday.

The man was taken to a hospital with life-threatening injuries, possibly from smoke inhalation.

Mr. Piringer said the cause was under investigation.



Tech gets $28 million for disease research

Virginia Tech is receiving a $27.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health for infectious disease research at its Virginia Bioinformatics Institute.

Rep. Rick Boucher, Virginia Democrat, joined university officials Monday to announce the five-year contract from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

It’s the largest one-time federal award the school has received.

School officials say the money will be used to integrate information on pathogens and help researchers around the world analyze genomic, proteomic and other data in infectious disease research.

Project head Bruno Sobral said the award would allow the CyberInfrastructure Group to continue its infectious disease research and work on developing countermeasures.

Mr. Boucher said Tech’s institute has received more than $90 million in federal funding since its inception.


Police find 2 slain in car

Police in Hopewell are investigating the shooting deaths of two Petersburg men.

The victims, who were found Sunday night in a vehicle, were identified as Kashif Temple, 24, and Antonio Spain, 22.

Police said they discovered the victims after responding to a call from a resident who heard gunshots.


Colonial Williamsburg honors veterans

Colonial Williamsburg is offering free admission to veterans Nov. 6 through Nov. 11 as part of its Veterans Day tribute.

The free Honoring Service to America pass also will be offered to active duty military, National Guard and reservists, retirees and veterans’ dependents during the same period.

Special rates at five on-site hotels for military personnel and their families also will be offered.

Colonial Williamsburg will hold a military parade and ceremony on Veterans Day.

Shirley Plantation near Richmond also is paying tribute to veterans. Veterans will be admitted free on Veterans Day, and there will be tours focusing on the Hill Carter family’s military service dating from the 17th century.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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