- - Sunday, August 7, 2011


Memorial service held for South Vietnam leader

WHITTIER — Friends and family of Nguyen Cao Ky gathered in Southern California on Sunday to pay their last respects to the former South Vietnamese prime minister.

About 350 mourners filled the Rose Hill Memorial in Whittier, two weeks after Mr. Ky died in Malaysia at age 80 from complications linked to a lung infection. Family members solemnly filed past a photo of a young Mr. Ky in military regalia and placed flowers and incense near an urn holding his ashes.

A funeral was held last week in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital city; his ashes were then flown to the U.S. At the time of his death, he was in Malaysia to set up a scholarship for young people to study in the U.S.

Mr. Ky was commander of South Vietnam’s air force in 1965 when he was chosen by his fellow military officers to lead the country as prime minister. He led his country during two of the most tumultuous years of the Vietnam War and was able to end a disruptive cycle of coups and countercoups.


Summer practices win pediatricians’ tentative OK

CHICAGO — Playing sports in hot, steamy weather is safe for healthy children and teen athletes, so long as precautions are taken and the drive to win doesn’t trump common sense, the nation’s largest pediatricians group says.

New guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics, to be released Monday, arrive just as school sports ramp up in sultry August temperatures.

The guidelines replace a more restrictive policy based on now-outdated thinking that children were more vulnerable to heat stress than adults. With adequate training, water intake, time-outs and emergency treatment available on the sidelines, healthy young athletes can play even in high heat and humidity — within reason, the guidelines say.

Dr. Michael Bergeron, a University of South Dakota sports medicine specialist, said the academy’s old policy was often ignored because it recommended limiting or avoiding sports even in common summer conditions. The new policy is more detailed and nuanced, recommending that athletes be evaluated individually.

Still, Dr. Bergeron warned that overzealousness can be dangerous, even in a relatively tame summer. “You can take somebody in 80-degree heat and you can kill them if you work them hard enough,” he said.


5 officers convicted in post-Katrina shootings

NEW ORLEANS — A federal jury on Friday convicted five current or former police officers in deadly shootings on a New Orleans bridge after Hurricane Katrina, a high-profile victory for the Justice Department in its push to clean up the city’s troubled police department.

The case was a high-stakes test of the effort to rid the police department of corruption and brutality. A total of 20 current or former New Orleans police officers were charged last year in a series of federal probes. Most of the cases center on actions during the aftermath of the Aug. 29, 2005, storm, which plunged the flooded city into a state of lawlessness and desperation.

Sgts. Robert Gisevius and Kenneth Bowen, Officer Anthony Villavaso and former officer Robert Faulcon were convicted of civil rights violations in the shootings that killed two people and wounded four others on the Danziger Bridge less than a week after the storm. They face possible life prison sentences.

Retired Sgt. Arthur Kaufman and the other four men also were convicted of engaging in a brazen cover-up that included a planted gun, fabricated witnesses and falsified reports. The five men were convicted of all 25 counts they faced.


Police kill gunman who had slain 7 people

COPLEY — An Ohio man apparently angry with his girlfriend gunned down two people outside a home and two more in a car Sunday morning, then chased down another victim in a shooting rampage that left eight dead, including the gunman, who was shot by police, authorities and witnesses said.

Two others were wounded. A child was among those shot, witnesses said, though police wouldn’t confirm that. The gunman killed seven people in three places and was shot elsewhere, Copley police Chief Michael Mier said.

A neighbor, Gilbert Elie, was getting ready for church when he heard gunshots. He went outside and found a woman in a driveway who’d been shot and a man shot near a garage, and a woman and girl in a vehicle who were wounded, he told the Associated Press. Then a woman came out of the house next door and tried to talk to him, he said, but her boyfriend followed and shot her. Mr. Elie ran for safety behind a truck and didn’t see what happened next.

The names and ages of the victims and the gunman weren’t being released until police could tell family members, some of whom are out of state, said Copley police Sgt. Eric Goodwin.

The son of one victim said a child was among those shot and that the argument started between the gunman and his girlfriend, according to neighbor Kim Dietz. The gunman chased the son, who escaped by wading through a swamp and made his way to Ms. Dietz’s home, she told the Plain-Dealer of Cleveland.


Court: State can’t deny transgender inmates therapy

MADISON — A federal appeals court has upheld a judge’s ruling striking down a Wisconsin law banning taxpayer-funded hormone therapy for transgender inmates.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision came Friday in a case brought by a group of male inmates who identify as female. They say they need the hormones to treat their gender identity disorder and not having them would lead to severe health problems.

The state appealed after a federal judge struck down the 2006 law last year. A three-judge panel upheld the ruling, saying denying inmates medical treatment amounted to “torture.”

The American Civil Liberties Union hailed the decision. It says the law was the only one in the nation that denied such medical care to transgender inmates.

State attorneys say they are reviewing their options.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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