- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 10, 2012


College holds memorial for 7 shooting victims

OAKLAND | The founder of an Oakland college where a gunman went on a deadly shooting rampage says the school’s been encouraged by an outpouring of support from around the world.

Jongjin Kim spoke Tuesday at a memorial service held outside Oikos University. About 100 people huddled under tents set up on the rainy morning.

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan and Rep. Barbara Lee were among those in attendance for the 40-minute ceremony to remember the seven people killed on April 2.

Police have said suspect One Goh was targeting an administrator who had been involved in his financial dispute with the school. When he found out she wasn’t there, they say, he began shooting in classrooms.

On Tuesday, Oikos officials also announced the creation of a fund to support victims and their families.


Prosecutors want 25 years in terrorism case

BOSTON | Federal prosecutors are recommending a 25-year prison sentence for a Massachusetts man convicted of conspiring to help al Qaeda.

Tarek Mehanna of Sudbury was convicted in December of traveling to Yemen to seek training in a terrorist camp with the intention of going on to Iraq to fight U.S. troops there.

He is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday.

In a sentencing recommendation filed in court Tuesday, prosecutors said that although Mehanna was not successful in getting terrorist training, he attempted to engage in violent actions himself and worked to recruit others to do so.

Mehanna’s lawyers say he should not be sentenced to more than 6 1/2 years in prison. They say he never ended up receiving terrorist training, never provided any funds or weapons to al Qaeda and never actually threatened U.S. security interests.


Boy, 5, brings heroin for show and tell

BRIDGEPORT | Police say a 5-year-old boy brought 50 packets of heroin to school for show and tell, and his stepfather has been arrested.

The student went to kindergarten Monday with his stepfather’s jacket and pulled out the drugs in 10 small plastic bags when it came time for his presentation to the class, Bridgeport police told the Connecticut Post. The teacher grabbed the bags away from the boy, and the principal called police.

The boy’s stepfather, Santos Roman, 35, was arrested after arriving at the school.

Mr. Roman was searching the school for his stepson when he saw the jacket in an empty classroom, grabbed it and ran out of the school, police spokesman Keith Bryant told the newspaper. He said police, who had already seized the drugs, then took Mr. Roman into custody.

Mr. Roman was detained on $100,000 bail on risk of injury to a minor and drug charges. It’s not clear if Mr. Roman has a lawyer.

The boy was put in state custody until other relatives could be located.


NAACP asks Pasadena for police shooting docs

PASADENA | The NAACP has asked Pasadena officials for documents, audio recordings and ballistic reports related to last month’s police shooting death of an unarmed black teenager.

Police say 19-year-old Kendrec McDade was fatally shot on March 24 by officers responding to what turned out to be a false armed-robbery report. Authorities have said that false report set in the mind of the officers that McDade was armed.

The Pasadena branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People submitted the request Monday.

The Pasadena Star-News says NAACP branch president Joe Brown’s letter asks for copies of dispatch calls, ballistic-test results and the autopsy report, which has been placed on a security hold.

Lt. Phlunte Riddle said Tuesday that copies of reports are not released during an ongoing investigation.


Daley to answer questions on police-torture claims

CHICAGO | Lawyers say former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley has agreed to answer questions under oath about allegations he was part of a conspiracy to cover up police torture.

Flint Taylor is an attorney for a former inmate who is suing the city over the allegations. Mr. Taylor says the city agreed during a federal hearing Tuesday to make Mr. Daley available. No date has been set.

Mr. Daley’s office did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Mr. Daley is named in a civil suit filed by Michael Tillman, who claims Chicago police waterboarded him with soda decades ago to make him confess to a crime he didn’t commit. Mr. Tillman served nearly 24 years in prison before his rape and murder conviction was vacated in 2010.


Woman charged with faking cancer before her wedding

WHITE PLAINS | Strangers donated the beautifully embroidered wedding dress, the two rings, the honeymoon time-share in Aruba. They acted quickly, too, because the bride was dying of cancer. Or so she said.

The state attorney general’s office announced Tuesday that Jessica Vega, 25, has been indicted on charges of fraud and grand larceny for getting her “dream wedding” by falsely claiming she was dying of leukemia.

“By pretending to have a terminal illness, Vega inexcusably took advantage of the community’s hearts and minds, and profited off of their generosity,” said Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. “Our office will hold this individual accountable for fleecing the public through lies and deception.”

Ms. Vega, formerly of Montgomery, N.Y., was arrested in Virginia on April 3, extradited to New York and arraigned Friday in Orange County Court in Goshen. She pleaded not guilty. A call to the Legal Aid firm that represented her was not immediately returned.

Among the alleged victims listed in the indictment is the Nu-Cavu restaurant in Wallkill, where the bridal reception was held, and wine and appetizers worth more than $1,000 were donated. Part-owner Carmela Vitolo-Gelsomine said, “We tried to do the best we could for her. We thought she was in a situation where she needed help.”

Others listed as victims are the boutique that donated the wedding dress, and a woman who volunteered to do hair and makeup for the bride and seven bridesmaids.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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