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Friday, September 30, 2005
· Bennett: Black Abortions Would Lower Crime. William Bennett, on his radio show, "Morning in America," was answering a caller's question when he took issue with the hypothesis put forth in a recent book that one reason crime is down is that abortion is up. "But I do know that it's true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could, if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down," said Bennett.
» Ted kennedy: 'Bennett is a racist.' In a chorus of reponses, Ted Kennedy called Bill Bennett a "racist," and demands for an apology came from Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. Bennett fired back, "I'll not take instruction from Teddy Kennedy," he said. "A young woman likely drowned because of his negligence. I'll take no moral instruction with him. That's much worse than legal gambling what Teddy Kennedy did. He should make no judgments at all about people. He shouldn't be in the Senate."
· Georgia man sets girlfriend on fire after breakup. Police in Macon arrested a man who they say doused his girlfriend with gasoline and set her on fire after she broke off their engagement. Jomekia Pope, a 29-year-old who has a history of domestic abuse, faces charges of aggravated assault and arson.
· Fugitive goes on date with policeman. A fugitive who escaped from prison in Hungary was caught when he unwittingly went out on a date with a policeman. The unidentified man, sentenced for robbery and fraud, had posted an ad with his own photo in an online dating website.
· Rachel Ray gets married. Food Network hostess Rachael Ray has tied the knot in Montalcino, Italy, it was reported Wednesday. The cooking show maven, who hosts "30 Minute Meals," "$40 a Day" and "Tasty Travels!" married longtime boyfriend John Cusimano.
· FDNY chaplain resigns after 9/11 conspiracy remarks. The fire department's new Muslim chaplain abruptly resigned Friday after saying in a published interview that he believes something other than al-Qaida hijackers brought down the World Trade Center. "It became clear to him that he would have difficulty functioning as an FDNY chaplain," Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta told reporters an hour before Imam Intikab Habib was to be officially sworn in. Habib told Newsday in an interview "Was it 19 hijackers who brought it down, or was it a conspiracy?"
· Greenville Tech administrator appeals firing over "yard apes" remark. The Greenville Technical College administrator who was forced to resign after she referred to children of hurricane evacuees as "yard apes" wants her job back. Renee Holcombe, a former associate vice president at the school, said she was unaware the term was offensive in an appeal filed yesterday.
· Kids and their credit. Since teenagers typically don't have much money beyond the cash in their wallets and a few bucks in a savings account, the notion of money management often seem surreal to them. People age 25 to 34 account for the second-fastest growing percentage of those filing for bankruptcy, and 22% of teenagers do not even know that if they take out a loan, they have to pay it back with interest.
· Pentagon revokes clearance of 'Able Danger' officer. An officer who has claimed that a classified military unit identified four Sept. 11 hijackers before the 2001 attacks is facing Pentagon accusations of breaking numerous rules, allegations his lawyer suggests are aimed at undermining his credibility. The alleged infractions by Army Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, 42, include obtaining a service medal under false pretenses, improperly flashing military identification while drunk and stealing pens, according to military paperwork shown by his attorney to The Associated Press.
· Unwed, pregnant teacher sues over dismissal. A case is set to begin in federal court next month for a woman who is suing a Christian school that fired her after administrators learned she was unmarried and pregnant.
· Rep. Mary Bono, Husband to Divorce. Rep. Mary Bono and her husband, businessman Glenn Baxley, plan to divorce, her office said Thursday. Bono, the widow of pop star-turned-politician Sonny Bono, married Baxley in November 2001.
· Leno's Autographed Bike Raises $500,000. It looks like Jay Leno's celebrity-autographed motorcycle has raised nearly a half-million dollars for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Bidding for the bike closed on the eBay auction Web site at 5 p.m. Thursday, and Leno announced during the taping of Thursday's "Tonight Show" that the winning bid was $505,100.
· Teen With Camcorder Captures His Own Killing On Tape. Seth Hammes was filming in the woods when his camcorder recorded the crack of gunshots, the 17-year-old's screams and the voice of the alleged shooter, promising help that never came. Authorities say they might never have learned what happened to Hammes, who later died in the woods. "But right next to him was the videotape," Monroe County Sheriff Pete Quirin said.
· Schwarzenegger Terminates California Same-Sex Marriage Bill. As promised, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed California's same-sex marriage bill on Thursday. Explaining his action — which came on a day in which he rejected 51 other bills as well — Schwarzenegger wrote that he believed gay couples were entitled to "full protection under the law and should not be discriminated against," but that he believed the bill would have reversed a 2000 ballot measure that declared that only a marriage between a man and a woman is legal in California.
· Prosecutor has 'strong evidence' against dead pervert priest. A prosecutor says he has "strong evidence" that a Catholic priest killed a funeral home director and an intern more than three years ago, after being approached about another crime involving a child. The priest was later found hanged.
· New York prostitute busted for having big mouth. A $2,000 an hour prostitute known as New York's No. 1 Escort pleaded not guilty on Thursday to charges of money laundering and prostitution that stemmed from her bragging in the media about her work, including posing provocatively for the cover of New York Magazine under the headline "NY's #1 Escort Reveals All." In that interview, she told the magazine she generated revenues of $1.5 million annually and kept 45 percent of that sum in return for having sex with high-roller clients.
· Studio sees no humor in 'Muslim.' Comedian Albert Brooks says a very unfunny thing happened on his way to making a new film called "Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World" - the studio panicked over the title. Brooks says the studio - Sony - got so worried the comedy's title, with its use of the word Muslim, might bring reprisals that it decided not to release the picture.
· MADD enters 25th year with change on its mind. It's not that people oppose parents or support drunken drivers. But Mothers Against Drunk Driving didn't achieve the kind of success it will announce today without making a few enemies and attracting critics along the way. For example, MADD's money-raising efforts have been questioned for years, and has one of the worse records with up to 58% of the money MADD raises going toward fundraising and management, the American Institute for Philanthropy says.
· Rodney King Arrested for Alleged Threats. Rodney King, whose videotaped beating by Los Angeles police led to deadly riots in 1992, was arrested after he allegedly threatened his daughter and ex-girlfriend, police said. King, 40, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of making criminal threats. He was being held on $25,000 bail.
· Dean remains a young rebel. The 50th anniversary of screen rebel James Dean's death is being marked by fans on Friday. Dean was only 24 when he suffered fatal injuries in a smash between his Porsche and another car on a Californian highway on September 30, 1955.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Dogmatic [dog·mat·ic] adj. 1. Expressing rigid opinions; Prone to expressing strongly held beliefs and opinions. 2. Asserting opinions in a doctrinaire or arrogant manner; opinionated.
· O.J. Simpson celebrates 10th anniversary signing autographs. O.J. Simpson plans to mark the 10th anniversary of his acquittal on double murder charges by signing autographs at a Los Angeles area comic convention.
· Science sinks the myth of a slow death in quicksand. It is a staple scene of B-movies and Westerns: the cowboy stumbles into a patch of quicksand and is sucked under until only his stetson remains on top, or sinks up to his neck until hauled out by his sidekick. Both scenarios have now been proved to fly in the face of physics. Research has shown that it is impossible for people to sink into quicksand much beyond the waist — but it is equally impossible to pull someone out once they are stuck.
· Kevorkian, in Prison Interview, Says He Won't Assist in Suicides if Paroled. If released from prison, former doctor Jack Kevorkian says he'll still campaign to legalize assisted suicide but won't resume helping people to die that way. Kevorkian, 77, is serving a 10- to 25-year sentence for second-degree murder for giving a fatal injection of drugs to a patient with Lou Gehrig's disease in 1998. Kevorkian, who has said he assisted in at least 130 deaths, is not eligible for parole until 2007.
· Blake Testifies in Wrongful Death Suit. Robert Blake took center stage during his first day of testimony in a wrongful death lawsuit, jousting verbally with the opposition lawyer and eliciting complaints from the judge for his aggressive style.
· Theron Gets Hollywood Walk of Fame Star. Oscar winner Charlize Theron's career came full circle Thursday when she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame only blocks from where she was first "discovered."
· Martha Stewart Gives Up Fur. Martha Stewart, who says she's given up fur, has made a video for PETA. "I used to wear fur, but like many others, I had a change of heart when I learned what actually happens to the animals," Stewart says in the video.
· Jailed reporter reaches deal in CIA leak probe. After spending 12 weeks behind bars protecting a confidential source, New York Times reporter Judith Miller was released from jail after receiving permission from her source to provide evidence to a federal grand jury investigating the leak of a CIA operative's name.
Thursday, September 29, 2005
· Texas judge orders teen barred from sex. A state district judge has ordered a 17-year-old drug offender barred from sex as a condition of her probation. Judge Lauri Blake made the ruling that bars the girl from having sex as long as she is living with her parents and attending school. She has also prohibited tattoos, body piercings, earrings and clothing "associated with the drug culture" for those on probation.
· Fla. Wal-Mart workers unite — without union. It's not a union, but some Wal-Mart workers say it might be the next best thing. Searching for a voice in their work lives, employees of some central Florida Wal-Mart stores have formed a workers group to collectively air complaints about what they claim is shoddy treatment by the retail giant. "Management seems like they don't really respect the associates," said Carl Jones, acting chairman of the new group, who makes $9.40 an hour as the lead cart-pusher at a store outside Orlando.
· 60 Percent of National Guard and Reserve Female Veterans Say They Were Sexually Harassed. Six in 10 women who have served in the National Guard and Reserves said they were sexually harassed or assaulted, but less than a quarter reported it and many who did were encouraged to drop the complaint, according to a survey released Thursday.
· Madonna Sings About Kabbalah Founder. Madonna likes to think of herself as being on the cutting edge, so she probably thinks a song called "Isaac" on her new album, about the founder of modern Kabbalah, is just the ticket.
· Chip Helps Electric Outlet Go Broadband. The common electric socket will serve as your home's connection to broadband with a new chip developed by Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. - doing away with all the Ethernet cables or the hassle of hooking up to a wireless network device.
· Man Sinks $200,000 Yacht Rather Than Lose It In Divorce. A British man sunk his $200,000 yacht in southwest England Wednesday rather than let his estranged wife sell it for a knockdown price after the couple decided to break up. The final straw in the couple's bitter break up came when his wife advertised the yacht in a local newspaper last week, saying she wanted a quick sale and was prepared to let the yacht go for $72,000.
· Cash-strapped Detroit wants to buy a tank. It's a huge tank with a huge price tag. The Detroit Police department is ready to make a big purchase on a crime-fighting vehicle despite laying off dozens of officers. It's an armored urban assault vehicle that would be used in drug raids and will cost the department $743,000.
· FedEx discrimination suit moves ahead. The suit contends the delivery service paid thousands of current and former minority employees less than their white counterparts. James Finberg, an attorney representing the class action case said "FedEx knows that black and Hispanics fail at a much higher rate, but yet has not changed the test."
· U.S. Won't Let U.N. Take Control Of Internet. A senior U.S. official rejected calls on Thursday for a U.N. body to take over control of the main computers that direct traffic on the Internet, reiterating U.S. intentions to keep its historical role as the medium's principal overseer.
· Reports: Moss Checks Into Rehab Clinic. Two British newspapers reported Thursday that Kate Moss has checked into a rehabilitation clinic in Arizona. Friends of the 31-year-old supermodel who was photographed apparently snorting cocaine told The Times that Moss flew to The Meadows clinic, where she will spend a month in "medical treatment and therapy."
· Handwritten Lennon Lyrics Fail to Sell. A set of Beatles lyrics handwritten by John Lennon on the back of a phone bill failed to sell at auction Wednesday. The 17-line draft of "I'm Only Sleeping" had been expected to sell for at least $350,000, but failed to reach its reserve price at Christie's auction house.
· Florida Police Charge Darryl Strawberry. Former baseball star Darryl Strawberry was charged with filing a false police report after investigators watching a gas station surveillance video saw him drive off in a different sport utility vehicle than the one he reported stolen, The Palm Beach Post reported on its Web site Thursday.
· Searching for Stern Subs Difficult. Executives at Viacom-owned Infinity Broadcasting have deemed Stern "not replaceable" and are opting to try out multiple radio personalities in different soon-to-be former Stern markets.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Extemporaneous [ex·tem·po·ra·ne·ous] adj. 1. Unrehearsed. Done or said without advance preparation or thought; impromptu: "An extemporaneous lecture." 2. Prepared in advance but delivered without notes or text: "An extemporaneous speech."
· Chill out at new bar. It is surely Britain's most chilled venue: a new bar in central London has been fashioned entirely from ice. The furniture, decorations - even the glasses - have all been carved from huge blocks of frozen water.
· Do-Not-Call Lists Under Fire. Two years after the National Do Not Call Registry took effect - and with more than 100 million numbers enrolled - dinner-time conversations are still being interrupted by telemarketing calls. Regulators say the system is working, but a recent random survey found that 51% of registered consumers say they're still getting calls they think the list is supposed to block.
· Apple admits problem with iPod nano. Apple Computer Inc., responding to complaints that the screen on its sleek, recently introduced iPod cracks too easily, said on Wednesday it will replace any defective units.
· Bush Pardons Coal Mine Bomber, 13 Others. President Bush granted pardons Wednesday to 14 people, including a member of the mineworkers union who was convicted for his role in bombings at a West Virginia coal mine, a counterfeiter and a bootlegger. Bush has issued 60 pardons, while his father, former President George H.W. Bush, issued 77 pardons during his single term, and former President Clinton granted clemency to 456 people during his eight years in office.
· Flight Attendants Say Boycott 'Flightplan.' Three groups representing flight attendants are calling for a boycott of the box-office hit "Flightplan." In the Jodie Foster thriller about a mother looking for her missing daughter aboard a plane, a flight attendant colludes with an air marshal as part of a plot to extort a ransom from the airline.
· $10K Reward Offered After Candy Stolen From Trailer. A trucking company is offering a $10,000 reward for the return of over 36,000 pounds of candy and gum stolen last month from a trailer parked at an east-central Indiana truck stop. The 53-foot-long trailer belonging to McCain Transport was loaded with 30 pallets of Bazooka gum, jelly beans and assorted candy when it was stolen.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
· Workers Gave Elderly Patients Laxatives To Prank Next Shift. What is being described as a "prank" that occurred last year has resulted in serious accusations against two former nursing home employees from Irvine. Lisa Kilburn, 27, and Kim Congleton, 30, were both certified nursing assistants at Irvine Health and Rehabilitation Center. They're accused of giving laxatives to patients who did not need them, including older and medically fragile people. The patients suffered pain and rectal bleeding.
· Al Jazeera's newest journalist is an ex-US Marine. Josh Rushing, former Marine captain and an accidental star of the movie Control Room made news of his own last week when he signed on to become the American face of the controversial Arab news network Al Jazeera-International. Top U.S. officials, including Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, have repeatedly complained that Al Jazeera's coverage is unfair or untrue. Yesterday, Rushing sat down with TIME for his first interview on why he took the job and what the new network will cover.
· Scientists perfect sandcastle recipe. A lesson learned by centuries of beachcombers has been distilled to a physicist's formula: to make the perfect sandcastle, use eight parts sand to one part water. The physicists' study, released before publication in the journal Nature Physics, is entitled, rather grandly, "Maximum angle of stability of a wet granular pile."
· Treasure hunters demand part of robot's find. A debate is raging in Chile over who has the rights to a mythic treasure trove supposedly found by a robot metal detector on the islands that inspired the novel about castaway Robinson Crusoe. The 300-year-old booty worth up to $10 billion hasn't even been dug up, so nobody knows whether it's really been found, but the Chilean treasure hunters say they won't reveal its hiding place unless the government guarantees them the right to half of it.
· Man Falls Asleep Stealing Gasoline. If you're going to steal gas, you might want to stay awake. Police in Muncie reported they found a man who fell asleep while siphoning gasoline into a 55-gallon tank in the back of his van. The manager of a Swifty Gas station noticed the white van when he got to work Tuesday morning and called the cops.
· FEMA Under Fire Again for Rita Effort. Saying they were caught off-guard by the number of people in need, FEMA officials closed a relief center early on Wednesday after some of the hundreds of hurricane victims in line began fainting in triple-digit heat.
· Younger and fatter Mick Jagger imposter gets free drinks and women. A Mick Jagger lookalike got the VIP treatment at a club in New York until club officials got a better look at him. A spokeswoman for Spirit says the imposter spent 90 minutes at the club getting free drinks and a lot attention from women.
· DeLay Indicted in Texas Fundraising Probe. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was indicted Wednesday by a Texas grand jury on a charge of conspiring to violate political fundraising laws, making him the highest-ranking member of Congress ever to face criminal indictment and forcing him to temporarily step aside from his GOP post.
· 19-year-old faces jail for copying movies. A 19-year-old movie theater cashier from Missouri faces eight years in prison and a $250,000 fine after pleading guilty in San Jose to copying first-run movies and uploading them onto the Internet, the U.S. attorney's office said.
· 'Peace Mom' calls John McCain a "Warmonger." Cindy Sheehan didn't change her opposition to the war in Iraq after meeting Tuesday with one of its supporters, Sen. John McCain, a Vietnam veteran whom she called "a warmonger." "He tried to tell us what George Bush would have said," Sheehan said. McCain, R-Ariz., also seemed disappointed in the meeting, which he said had been misrepresented as including some of his constituents.
· Wendy's rewards $100,000 for info in finger case. Wendy's International Inc. confirmed on Tuesday it would pay the $100,000 reward it promised for information that helped establish the origin of a piece of human finger a woman claimed she had found in a bowl of the burger chain's chili.
· Number of millionaires hits record. Households with a net worth of at least $1 million excluding primary residences rose 8 percent to a record high 8.9 million. This was 700,000 more than last year.
· Man arrested 30 years after murder pleads guilty. A man was sentenced Tuesday to three years in jail for shooting a civilian police employee in a dispute over a stolen can of Spam more than 30 years ago.
· ABC, CBS Lead First Week of New TV Season. Viewers flocked to old favorites "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and "Desperate Housewives" and tried out new fare "My Name is Earl" and "Everybody Hates Chris" in the first week of television's new season. The season began like the old one left off: ABC is hot, NBC is not and CBS remains the nation's most popular network.
· Is Air America crumbling? Air America, the liberal radio answer to Rush Limbaugh, is now asking its listeners to send in money, leading some analysts to say the network is "crumbling." The network, featuring voices including Al Franken and Janeane Garofalo, has developed a program where people become "associate" members by contributing cash to the radio station.
· Oklahoma 71-year-old wins homecoming crown. She wants to be known as an advocate for the elderly, but students at Northeastern State University know 71-year-old Muriel Saunders as their homecoming queen.
· Mouse grounds plane for 13 hours. A mouse upset the best-laid plans of an airline and nearly 250 passengers in the Philippines, grounding a plane for 13 hours while engineers tried to smoke out the rodent.
· Iraq's First Female Suicide Bomber Kills 6. A woman disguised in a man's robes and headdress slipped into a line of army recruits Wednesday and detonated explosives strapped to her body, killing at least six recruits and wounding 35 — the first known suicide attack by a woman in Iraq's insurgency.
· Police warned of multiple Taser hits. Nearly three months before the death of a 21-year-old Nashville man who was shocked up to 19 times with police Tasers, the devices' maker sent a bulletin to police departments — including Metro — warning them of the potentially deadly consequences of repeatedly shooting suspects with the stun guns.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
· Ohio executes man involved in $40 robbery. The state of Ohio executed a 32-year-old man on Tuesday who admitted killing another man in a $40 robbery nine years ago and had waived most of his appeals, saying he deserved to die.
· Woman Ticketed For Sitting On Park Bench Without Kids. It's an 'only in New York' story. A woman was given a ticket for sitting on a park bench because she doesn't have children. Sandra Catena, 47, said she didn't see the sign at the park prohibiting adults without kids when she sat down to wait for an arts festival to start. Two cops asked her if she was with a child. When she said no, they gave her a ticket that could bring a $1,000 fine and 90 days in jail.
· Ashton and Demi: Real or Punk'd? As most have already heard, People Magazine reported that Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher tied the knot last Saturday night. Now, Access Hollywood is on the case to find out if it was for real or are we all getting “Punk’d?” Access Hollywood was forwarded an email, allegedly written by “Punk’d” executive producer Jason Goldberg to the show’s producers and writers, which stated “preparations for the ceremony are in full swing, and it’s actually more hell than preparing for a real wedding, if that’s possible.”
· Postal Service will post huge deficit in '06. Even with a planned postage rate increase, the Postal Service expects to go nearly $2 billion in the red next year. The agency plans a 5.4 percent rate increase in January, which would raise the cost of sending a first-class letter by two cents — to 39 cents.
· Police chief: 249 New Orleans officers left posts without permission during Katrina. Nearly 250 police officers - roughly 15 percent of the force - could face a special tribunal because they left their posts without permission during Hurricane Katrina and the storm's chaotic aftermath, the police chief said.
· Anna Nicole's Case Heads to High Court. Former Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith is going to the Supreme Court. Justices said Tuesday they would consider Smith's appeal over the fortune of her 90-year-old late husband. The stripper-turned-reality television star stands to win as much as $474 million that a bankruptcy judge initially said she was entitled to.
· Lawmaker uses centuries-old law as DUI defense. Although state Rep. David Graves was charged with drunken driving for a second time, he says his position as lawmaker means he cannot break the law while the Legislature is at work. Graves, a Republican from Macon, Ga., is citing a centuries-old provision in the state constitution to argue that he should not be prosecuted for a DUI he received in Cobb County in February.
· "GoodFella" Gets 180 Days for Drug Charges. Former mobster-turned-chef Henry Hill, whose experiences inspired the 1990 gangland movie "GoodFellas," has been sentenced to 180 days in jail for attempted possession of methamphetamine.
· War protesters preplanned arrests. The day before yesterday's arrest of Cindy Sheehan and dozens of other protesters, a press release announced that: "Cindy Sheehan to Join Nonviolent Civil Disobedience at the White House on Monday, Sept. 26," and "Hundreds will be arrested as they express their opposition to the Iraq War."
· Hospital suspends transplants after allegations. One of California’s largest organ transplant centers has suspended its liver program after determining that doctors improperly arranged a liver transplant for a Saudi man not among the highest-priority patients, and where the Saudi Arabia Embassy paid $339,000 for the operation. The suspension of the liver program at St. Vincent means that lifesaving transplants could be delayed for 75 patients who are on the center’s liver waiting list.
· Law school posts student social security numbers on the Internet. Social Security numbers and other sensitive information belonging to more than 300 CUNY Law School students were accidentally posted on the Internet this month until an alert law student stumbled upon her own files.
· Stuntman Describes Several Murder Scenarios in Robert Blake Civil Trial. A Hollywood stuntman testified Monday in a wrongful death lawsuit against Robert Blake that the actor described several scenarios in which his wife could be killed.
· Manual Transmission Foils Carjacker. A would-be carjacker got away with nothing more than the keys Monday after he apparently was thwarted by the vehicle's manual transmission. The thief was armed with a shotgun when he ordered a 26-year-old man out of his Chevrolet Camaro in a suburban Kansas City parking lot. The driver complied, but when the robber got into the car he was unable to manage the stick shift.
· That "new car" smell is harmful. One of the best things about having a new car could be bad for you. New research finds that much loved "new car" smell is produced by harmful chemicals. According to a recent study, that pleasurable scent has been linked to harmful chemicals - volatile organic compound or VOC - which releases chemicals from glues, paints, and vinyl.
· Kidman: Psychiatry Is Worthwhile Field. Nicole Kidman says she didn't have to go far to research her role as a psychiatrist for the upcoming movie, "The Visiting." "I have a father who is a psychologist, so my life has been research," the Oscar-winning actress told AP Radio in a recent interview.
· City of San Jose proclaims "Church of Scientology Week." Over 3,800 people joined city officials, Police Chief Rob Davis and San Jose/Silicon Valley NAACP President Rick Callender Sunday, in opening the new home of the Church of Scientology, where Vice Mayor Cindy Chavez presented a City of San Jose Proclamation to the Church, designating August 28th — September 3rd "Church of Scientology Week."
· Boys Rip Classmates' Clothes Off, Snap Photos. Four Central Florida middle school students were arrested Monday for allegedly ripping off the clothes off classmates and then snapping photos with their cell phones.
· Leather-clad revelers hot, sweaty in S.F. Despite sweltering morning heat, leather-clad minions mixed with fully nude street revelers as an estimated 400,000 people flocked to Folsom Street on Sunday for the 22nd annual Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco. Dominants and submissives came from all over the globe, including London, Paris, Canada, New Zealand and Australia to experience the "granddaddy of leather" extravaganzas, according to Darryl Flick, president of Folsom Street Events.
· Found on eBay: A larger-than-life Stallone statue. Looking for a truly unique lawn ornament? How about a 10-foot-tall bronze statue of Sylvester Stallone? It was originally erected near the Philadelphia Museum of Art, at the top of the steps made famous by the original "Rocky." Bidding starts at $1 million.
· `Squeaky' Fromme unrepentant, still devoted to Manson. On a September morning 30 years ago, Lynette Alice Fromme pointed a loaded pistol at Gerald Ford in a park outside the California State Capitol in Sacramento. The gun didn't fire, but she was sentenced to life in prison for her crime.
· Dunst Confirms 'Spidey 3' Villain Identities. Although the Internet has been abuzz with the supposed identities of the two "Spider-Man 3" villains to be played by Thomas Haden Church and Topher Grace, Sony and Marvel have kept the names under wraps. Now Mary Jane herself has confirmed Spidey's latest nemeses.
· Brown serving as consultant to FEMA. A congressional panel on Tuesday is expected to scrutinize the decision to keep ousted Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Michael Brown on the federal payroll. Brown said he wished he had pushed more forcefully - and earlier - for federal troops to be brought in to restore order in New Orleans.
· Piranha Bites Manila Airport Inspector. A routine check of a shipment at Manila airport turned bloody when a piranha sprung up and bit one of the inspectors. "I was checking one of the boxes when suddenly, something leaped out of it and bit me," fisheries quarantine inspector Mario Trio told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in a report published Tuesday.
Monday, September 26, 2005
· Eleven Pervert Priests in Chicago Area Removed. Eleven priests suspected of sexual misconduct with minors more than 20 years ago have been barred from clerical work, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago said Monday.
· Don Adams of 'Get Smart' Dies at 82. Don Adams, the wry-voiced comedian who starred as the fumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart in the 1960s television spoof of James Bond movies, "Get Smart," has died. Adams died of a lung infection late Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
· Sentencing Delayed For 'Cool Mom' Who Held Teen Sex Parties. A Colorado woman who admitted to giving drugs and sex to teenage boys because she wanted to be a "cool mom" was to find out Monday what her sentence would be, but her sentencing was delayed after she was in a serious car accident that involved four adolescents.
· Yankees star Derek Jeter gets hate mail. New York Yankees star Derek Jeter is the latest athlete to receive a threatening letter warning him to stop dating white women. The letter was mailed to the all star shortstop at Yankee Stadium and called him a "traitor to his race."
· Update: No Charges in Shooting of Robber With Water Nozzle. A liquor store owner will not be charged after fatally shooting a robber who was holding a pistol-grip water nozzle, the district attorney announced Monday.
· Wal-Mart Reportedly Wants To Buy Tommy Hilfiger. Women's Wear Daily is reporting on its Web site that the world's largest retailer is believed to have initiated the idea of a buyout, and will start conducting due diligence as early as this week. According to Women's Wear Daily, the asking price for Tommy Hilfiger is at least $1.82 billion, but could go as high as $2.16 billion.
· Sheehan Arrested During Anti-War Protest. Cindy Sheehan, the California woman who has used her son's death in Iraq to spur the anti-war movement, was arrested Monday while protesting outside the White House. Sheehan and several dozen other protesters sat down on the sidewalk, after police warned them three times that they were breaking the law.
· Drug Bust Dopiness. Members of a minority student group at Boston College say use of the term "drug bust" in a story about the arrest of three black Resident Directors caught smoking dope was insensitive and racist. They insisted that the term would not have been used had the perpetrators been white.
· Sopranos Actor Pastore to Plead Guilty. Vincent Pastore, who played gangster Salvatore Bonpensiero on HBO's "The Sopranos," has agreed to plead guilty to a charge that he attempted to assault a former girlfriend last spring.
· Man Takes Citizenship Oath, Wins Lottery. A man who immigrated from Kenya to the United States found prosperity beyond his expectations on the day he became a U.S. citizen. Shortly after Moses Bittok, of West Des Moines, took the oath of citizenship on Friday, he discovered he had a $1.89 million winning ticket from the Iowa Lottery's Hot Lotto game.
· Army private convicted in Abu Ghraib case. Army Pfc. Lynndie England, whose smiling poses in photos of detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib made her the face of the scandal, was convicted Monday by a military jury on all but one of the seven counts she faced.
· Rita's death toll climbs with discovery of five dead in Beaumont. The death toll climbed to seven when the bodies of five people were discovered in a Beaumont apartment. The five - a man, a woman and three children - apparently were overcome by carbon monoxide from a generator they were using after the hurricane knocked out the electricity over the weekend, authorities said.
· Credit card companies can keep data ID theft secret. Credit card companies don't have to notify customers their personal information has been stolen, a California Judge ruled. The Rothken law firm in Marin County, Ca had brought a class action suit on behalf of cardholders and merchants against CardSystems Solutions, Visa and MasterCard following a high profile data ID heist in June.
· Afghanistan urged to fast-track legalisation of opium crop. Afghanistan urgently needs to legalise its massive opium crop, which supplies most of the world's heroin, to avoid becoming a narco-state and to fund reconstruction, a think-tank said here.
· The Lawsuit That Sank New Orleans. After Hurricane Betsy swamped New Orleans in 1965, the Army Corps of Engineers designed a Lake Pontchartrain Hurricane Barrier to shield the city with flood gates like those that protect the Netherlands from the North Sea. Congress provided funding and construction began. But work stopped in 1977 when a federal judge ruled, in a suit brought by Save Our Wetlands, that the Corps' environmental impact statement was deficient.
· New developments in Behl investigation. After days with little news in the search for missing VCU freshman Taylor Behl, the story began to unfold again Friday as a "person of interest" was taken into police custody and the university announced a $20,000 reward in addition to the $11,000 offered by Behl's family for anyone with information that leads to Behl's location and return.
· 'NY Times' Public Editor Backs Geraldo in Dispute. In an unusually harsh column, Byron Calame, public editor at The New York Times, has criticized the paper’s refusal to offer a correction to Fox News’ Geraldo Rivera in a now-famous episode during the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans. He singled out Bill Keller, executive editor, for special fault. In Calame’s mind, it’s a slam-dunk: “I have been involved in scores of correction disputes over the years at another newspaper, but this one is unusual in that there is very little to argue about.”
· La. politician slams Russert for tragedy 'nitpicking.' The Louisiana official who broke America's heart when he wept on TV about the failure to rescue a colleague's mother in a New Orleans nursing home went back on "Meet the Press" yesterday to face questions about discrepancies in his story. "Man, get out of my face," Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard told host Tim Russert, who had pointed out that Broussard got dates and details of the death wrong.
· Eva overexposed? While the "Desperate Housewives" stars have stayed busy during hiatus, no one's made more headlines than the youngest, foxiest housewife, Eva Longoria, who plays campy, trampy Gabrielle. And it's not necessarily a good thing. Longoria is very close to becoming the latest victim of ADD - that's Attention-demanding Diva Disorder - the same disease that's felled such star-struck TV hotties in the past as Suzanne Somers and Farrah Fawcett.
· Aruba suspect denies responsibility. A suspect in the case of an Alabama teenager missing in Aruba admits he lied about the last time he saw her on the night she vanished, but he insists she was fine, according to a television interview.
· Left-handed women may face higher cancer risk. Left-handed women are more than twice as likely as right-handers to suffer from breast cancer before reaching menopause, Dutch scientists said on Monday. More than a million women are diagnosed with breast cancer worldwide each year. 75% of cases occur after menopause, which usually begins around the age of 50.
· Update: New inquiry may expose events that led to Pat Tillman’s death. The battle between a grieving family and the U.S. military justice system is on display in thousands of pages of documents strewn across Mary Tillman’s dining room table in suburban San Jose.
Sunday, September 25, 2005
· Suspended pervert priest says contact was consensual. A suspended Roman Catholic priest accused of molesting a mentally disabled 19-year-old told police the contact was consensual, according to court records obtained before a judge issued a gag order in the case. The victim functions at the level of a 9-year-old.
· It's a 'new era' of hurricanes. Don't rush to blame it on global warming, experts warn. Max Mayfield, director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, told a Senate subcommittee this week that we're in a period of heightened hurricane activity that could last another decade or two. "The increased activity since 1995 is due to natural fluctuations (and) cycles of hurricane activity driven by the Atlantic Ocean itself along with the atmosphere above it and not enhanced substantially by global warming," he testified.
· Producer accused of $5 million 'TV scam.' A Hollywood producer has been charged after allegedly taking $5.5 million from investors for a TV drama he said was backed by president George Bush. The U.S. attorney's office alleges Joseph Medawar, 43, collected money from investors for two years but spent the majority of it on himself. It said Mr. Medawar had falsely claimed the White House had endorsed the proposed series, called DHS.
· Hotels are one of few industries benefiting from Katrina. Hurricane Katrina may be blamed for rising gas prices, squeezing airlines' bottom lines and agriculture shipping delays, but it has been a boon for one industry: the nation's hotel sector.
· Louisiana’s governor seeks $20 billion for levee repairs. Areas of the city newly flooded by Hurricane Rita could be pumped dry again within a week after levee damage is repaired, far sooner than initially predicted, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokesman said Sunday as Louisiana’s governor said she would request $20.2 billion in funding for levees.
· Fox News Channel's Smith Buoys Reputation. Much like a youthful Dan Rather made a name for himself with stellar coverage of a Gulf Coast hurricane two generations ago, Fox News Channel's Shepard Smith is opening some eyes with his work, amid some controversy. Sean Hannity opened his show with images of the National Guard arriving in New Orleans, bringing hope and authority to a lawless town. Smith's reporting was far different. "Over there, there's hope," Smith said. "Over there, there's electricity. Over there, there is food and water. But you cannot go from there to there. The government will not allow you to do it. It's a fact." "All right, Shep," Hannity said. "I want to get some perspective here, because earlier today..." Smith interrupted him. "That is perspective!" he said.
· It's official: Jews control Hollywood. Ben Stein was asked by a 60 Minutes producer if Hollywood was run by Jews. Doing the math, Stein quickly determined that while Hollywood was not really "run" by anyone (it's far too chaotic for that, according to Stein), if Jews were about 2.5 percent of the U.S. population and about 60 percent of Hollywood was headed up by Jews, then the answer is obvious.
· Thumbtack presents potential threat to president. A high school student's class project consisted of a photograph of Bush fastened to a wall with a thumbtack. Over the picture of Bush is a "thumbs-down" sign. The thumbtack in the photo was apparently placed somewhere on Bush's head. Concerned that the thumbtack might represent a potential threat to the president, the company that developed the student's film notified the Secret Service.
· Foster's 'Flightplan' Propels Box Office. Jodie Foster piloted "Flightplan" to a No. 1 debut, her airborne thriller taking in $24.6 million to land ahead of "Tim Burton's Corpse Bride," the runner-up with $20.1 million.
· Oklahoma girl, alleged abductor found dead. A teenager who was abducted as she left school last week was found shot to death Saturday along with a man her mother had once dated. Authorities said it appeared to be a murder-suicide.
· Testing slimming powers of tequila. Scientists from Mexico's tequila producing region say juice extracted from the blue agave plant, best known when distilled into the fiery spirit, may help dieters shed pounds and cut cholesterol.
· Scout leader gets probation for photos of nude girl. A longtime Boy Scout leader from Annapolis was given probation and a suspended prison sentence after admitting he took nude pictures of a 9-year-old girl in his minivan in June. Police said Stanley Taylor admitted taking seven pictures of the girl, but told them he didn't know taking nude pictures of a 9-year-old was illegal. He gave officers the girl's phone number and wrote a letter of apology to her mother.
· UCF Officer Fatally Shot By Orlando Police. A University of Central Florida police officer was fatally shot by another officer outside the Citrus Bowl before a football game on Saturday. Witnesses said that an undercover officer broke up a gathering of students, who resisted his efforts. The officer then fired three shots into the air for help. Another officer saw a gunman and shot him several times. The gunman was the undercover officer.
· Mary and Jim to the end. Before Jim Morrison became famous with the Doors, he and Mary Werbelow were soul mates. In the never-ending procession of Morrison biographies, she is mentioned briefly but never quoted. Google her, and not a single photo appears. She has never spoken publicly about their three years together - until now.
· Sharapova quits during semifinal. Top seed Maria Sharapova had to retire during her China Open semifinal in Beijing, allowing fellow Russian Maria Kirilenko to move into the final against Germany's Anna-Lena Groenefeld. Sharapova's pullout, because of a damaged pectoral muscle, is a worrying development for the former Wimbledon champion.
· Even the jail was full of laughs in the great town of Mayberry. From the very outset, "The Andy Griffith Show" enjoyed a following that crossed all lines, all ages, all tastes. Some were inclined to dismiss the Griffith show, back then, as an exercise in knee-slapping Southern-rube humor.
· Teen arrested for attacking principal. A high school student was arrested on Friday for attacking her principal after he told her to stop talking on her cell phone. Tearsa Gaddy, 16, was sent to Principal Anthony Clement's office for disrupting class, police said. When Clement told her to stop talking on her cell phone, Gaddy threw it at his head then kicked him, police said.
Saturday, September 24, 2005
· Treasure-hunters claim $10 billion find. Treasure hunters believe they have found a legendary trove of 18th century jewels and gold coins worth $US10 billion on Chile's Robinson Crusoe island, the company that bankrolled the expedition said.
· Dirt Thieves? Apparently, there's a lot of money in dirt. Sheriff's detectives this week arrested Parrish residents Melissa Ellen Reynolds and her former husband, Jason, on fraud and first-degree grand theft charges in a case rooted in dirt hauling.
· Donate to hurricane relief and Brian Wilson will say hi. Iowa Jim was suspicious. Was Brian Wilson really putting up those messages on his Web site urging people to contribute whatever they could to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts? So Jim e-mailed a challenge to the Beach Boys' co-founder: Call him and tell him it was really him and he'd gladly donate $100. "So I called him up!" a jovial Wilson told The Associated Press.
· Brawling Pacers Sentenced to Probation. Indiana Pacers players Ron Artest, Jermaine O'Neal and Stephen Jackson were sentenced to a year's probation Friday, plus 60 hours of community service and $250 fines for their roles in one of the worst brawls in U.S. sports history.
· Sri Lankan election chief doesn't trust politicians. Sri Lankan election chief Dayananda Dissanayake will be running November presidential elections but will not be voting - he does not trust politicians. Mr Dissanayake, 64, is Sri Lanka's most reluctant election commissar. He wants to retire but a constitutional quirk is forcing him, against his will, to lead a team of 100,00 officials in staging the November 17 vote. "I have never voted at an election since 1963," Mr Dissanayake said.
· Settlement reached in lesbian yearbook photo dispute. A Clay County lesbian student has reached an out-of-court agreement with the local school board, about six months after her senior portrait was banned from the yearbook because she was dressed in a tuxedo.
· 'CSI effect' making cases hard to prove. Prosecutors in the United States say jurors schooled in crime investigations through watching TV dramas are making it tough to prove cases because they expect to see sophisticated forensic evidence, even in white-collar trials.
· Rosenberg Named President of Actors Union. Alan Rosenberg was elected president of the Screen Actors Guild on Friday, replacing former "Little House on the Prairie" star Melissa Gilbert, who decided not to run for a third two-year term. He beat out fellow candidates Morgan Fairchild and Robert Conrad.
· U.S. army plans to bulk-buy anthrax. The U.S. military wants to buy large quantities of anthrax, in a controversial move that is likely to raise questions over its commitment to treaties designed to limit the spread of biological weapons.
· Road-blocking firefighters scoff at Mitt's warning. The head of Newton, Mass. firefighters' union scoffed at the governor's threat of calling in the state police if the protesting firefighters ever tie up traffic during rush hour again. Newton's firefighters have been operating without a contract for more than two years and have been protesting around the city for nearly as long. But the pickets got out of hand during the morning rush hour Wednesday when a Newton Corner demonstration backed up traffic for 25 miles along local roads and the Massachusetts Turnpike.
· Pilot Accidentally Relays 'Hijack' Code. In the world of aviation, what's the difference between the codes 7600 and 7500? It turns out plenty of panic. Deputies and a SWAT team surrounded a plane at the Georgetown airport after one of the pilots accidentally entered a code saying the aircraft has been hijacked.
· Indy drivers race to embrace ethanol. The IRL, which makes its debut at the International Speedway in Watkins Glen on Sunday, is in the early stages of switching to 100 percent ethanol, a grain alcohol derived mainly from corn. This fuel is considered by many to be more efficient and environmentally friendly than gasoline and other fossil fuels.
· Pregnant Mindy McCready Overdoses - Again. Country singer Mindy McCready was hospitalized after overdosing on antidepressants early Friday following a quarrel with the father of her unborn child. She was in fair condition Friday afternoon, officials said.
Friday, September 23, 2005
· Update: Idaho weatherman quits, says he wants to pursue hurricane theory. An NBC affiliate weatherman who gained attention for an unusual theory that Hurricane Katrina was caused by the Japanese mafia using a Russian electromagnetic generator has quit the television station. Scott Stevens' last appearance on KPVI-TV was Thursday.
· Doctor sues over sex charges involving his twin. A U.S. doctor has sued a Seattle-area newspaper for defamation after it reported he posed as his twin, a gynecologist, to have sex with his brother's patients.
· Hamas goes out with a bang. A truck filled with masked Hamas militants and homemade weapons accidentally exploded at a Hamas rally Friday, killing at least 10 Palestinians and wounding 85 including children, bringing a grisly and terrifying end to one of the last gatherings by armed groups celebrating Israel's Gaza pullout.
· Deputy loses job after bigamy investigation. A Columbia, SC sheriff's deputy was fired for being married to two women at the same time, and his second wife was married to another man at the time of their wedding, according to a department investigation.
· Dumping of Homeless Suspected in Los Angeles. For decades, it's been an enduring urban tale about downtown Los Angeles, often talked about but never proved: Police departments wanting to get rid of society's lost and neglected — the homeless, mentally ill and criminals — simply drove through downtown and dumped them on skid row. But this week, evidence landed in the lap of the Los Angeles police department, who watched in disbelief as two LA County sheriff's deputies "pulled over, took a guy in handcuffs out of the car. They took off the cuffs and handed him a bag."
· Palmeiro Blames Tejada For Failing Drug Test. Baltimore Orioles first baseman Rafael Palmeiro says a teammate could be to blame for his failed steroid test this summer. Palmeiro told baseball's arbitration panel that a vitamin he received from Miguel Tejada might have caused his positive test. Orioles interim manager Sam Perlozzo says if the first baseman had named a teammate in trying to explain his steroid test, it probably would be best that Palmeiro not return to the team this year.
· John O'Hurley Wins TV Dance Rematch. The votes are in - and John O'Hurley has bested Kelly Monaco to win the "Dancing with the Stars" title many thought he deserved in the first place. "I'm very rarely beyond words, and I am right now," O'Hurley said after the results were announced Thursday on the ABC show.
· Women sue grocery chain, ex-supervisor. He spit on one woman. He kicked another. He pulled yet another woman's hair and shoved her into a Kash n' Karry storage room, bolted the door, pushed a Coke machine in front of the exit and left her to scream for help. Those are some of the allegations made in seven separate lawsuits filed Thursday in Hillsborough Circuit Court against former Kash n' Karry assistant manager Daniel T. Russell and the supermarket chain.
· Christian School Expels Girl Because Parents Are Lesbians. A 14-year-old student was expelled from a Christian school because her parents are lesbians, the school's superintendent said in a letter. Your family does not meet the policies of admission," Superintendent Leonard Stob wrote to Tina Clark, the girl's biological mother.
· Radiologist wins $2.5 million in search lawsuit. A federal jury awarded an Egyptian-born radiologist nearly $2.5 million for invasion of privacy after a property manager searched his apartment and called police on Sept. 11, 2001.
· As Many As 24 Killed in Texas Bus Fire. A bus carrying elderly evacuees from Hurricane Rita caught fire and was rocked by explosions early Friday on a gridlocked highway near Dallas, killing as many as 24 people, authorities said. Early indications were that it caught fire because of mechanical problems, then passengers' oxygen tanks started exploding. Developing...
· Mom Guilty of Rape for Arranging Daughter's Sex Date. A woman pleaded guilty to second-degree rape for providing a hotel room and liquor so her 13-year-old daughter and a 14-year-old friend could have sex with two men they just met.
· JetBlue pilot a poised pro. Scott Burke, 46, a veteran JetBlue pilot from Raleigh, N.C., calmed passengers and crew before nailing the emergency landing on Wednesday night. After his light-as-a-feather touchdown, he sauntered out of the plane like it was just another routine day on the job. Many of the 146 passengers aboard the flight praised Burke as an unflappable pilot who erased their fears with his straight-shooting manner. When the plane finally touched down, passengers burst into raucous cheers - which escalated when they got their first glimpse of their fearless captain.
· Prudhomme Cooking Comfort Food for Workers. Paul Prudhomme knows all about comfort food. The famous Cajun chef knows the comfort comes from both the cooking and the eating. So when Hurricane Katrina overwhelmed New Orleans, Prudhomme began doing what he does best dishing up great food. Prudhomme and his staff from K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen have cooked about 8,000 meals for members of the National Guard, police, firefighters, government workers and volunteers over the past three weeks.
· Beatty Rips Gov. Schwarzenegger at Nurses' Convention. Actor Warren Beatty leveled a blistering political assault on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Thursday night, accusing him of governing "by show, by spin, by cosmetics and photos ops."
· Paris Hilton caught up in underage booze scandal. The allegations stem from an episode of the reality show "The Simple Life: Interns," when Hilton allegedly offered teens marijuana and bourbon to "loosen them up" for a taped segment. Baltimore Police officials have confirmed they're taking the reports seriously, adding Hilton could face a hefty fine and jail time if she's found guilty.
· Fla. Sub Shop Fills Giant Relief Order. Adam Siegel turned away customers at his Adam's Sub shop Thursday to make boxed lunches to send to Hurricane Katrina evacuees now staying in San Antonio, Texas. Siegel's family, friends and other volunteers made a mountain of sandwiches with 40,000 pounds of turkey, beef and ham, thousands of loaves of bread, hundreds of buns, more than 200 pounds of cheese, and 400 cases of mayonnaise and mustard.
Thursday, September 22, 2005
· NBC meteorologist blames Japanese mafia for hurricanes. Scott Stevens, a meteorologist who for nine years has been forecasting the weather on NBC's KPVI-TV in Idaho, says the Yakuza — the Japanese mafia — is using a Russian-made electromagnetic generator to launch terrific storms against the U.S. mainland, in revenge for the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. He says it will soon be used again against another major American city. His bosses don't seem to mind the outrageousness, saying "He's very knowledgeable about weather, and he's very popular."
· Martha Stewart's NBC show draws ho-hum ratings. Martha Stewart launched her version of NBC reality hit "The Apprentice" to disappointing ratings and criticism that the domestic diva and ex-con needs to be a nastier TV boss.
· Legislation would require pet to be included in evacuations. Federal disaster grants to state and local governments should be conditioned on how they accommodate pets in their evacuation plans, say lawmakers disturbed that some Katrina victims refused to leave home because they couldn't take their animals with them. "I cannot help but wonder how many more people could have been saved had they been able to take their pets," Rep. Tom Lantos said.
· Driver Purposely Mows Down Crowd On Vegas Strip. A driver intentionally steered his car onto a sidewalk on the crowded Las Vegas Strip and then accelerated in a deadly scene resembling "humans being mowed down like a lawnmower," police said. One person died and 13 were hospitalized, many with major injuries.
· Catholic church employee accused of soliciting sex. A 50-year-old Dunedin, Florida man who supervised teens at a local Catholic church has been arrested on charges that he offered one boy $100 to perform a sex act, Pinellas County sheriff's officials said Wednesday. This is not the first time the man has been accused of illicit behavior with teens. In 1992, Polk County deputies accused him of showing teens pornography, providing them with alcohol and paying them for sex, records show.
· Cheerleading Coach Accused Of Having Sex With Student. A long-time Summit County cheerleading instructor has been charged with having sexual contact with a 16-year-old male student. Mishelle Robinson, a 31-year-old instructor at one of the state's most prestigious cheerleading and dancing facilities, faces felony charges of sexual battery.
· Ohio Brothel Put Out Of Business After 12 Years. After 12 years of trying, Columbus police got the goods on a madam who pleaded guilty Wednesday to one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and 142 counts of promoting prostitution.
· Lawsuit says city arresting panhandlers. Chicago police are arresting panhandlers for panhandling, according to a lawsuit filed yesterday. The panhandlers won a victory against the city two years ago, securing $400 for every panhandler arrested.
· Scientists: You Can't Modify Hurricanes. It sounds like a great idea: Let's just blast hurricanes like Rita and Katrina out of the sky before they hurt more people. Or, at least weaken the storms and steer them away from cities. Sometimes, the experiments appeared to work. Hurricane Debbie in 1969 was seeded twice over four days by several aircraft. Researchers noted that its intensity waxed and waned by up to 30 percent.
· Local official in charge of distributing Katrina supplies, hoarding them at his home. Police found cases of food, clothing and tools intended for hurricane victims at the home of the chief administrative officer for a New Orleans suburb, authorities said Wednesday. Four truckloads of donated materials must be processed as evidence but eventually will be distributed to victims. "We have lots of families that are begging for these supplies," said the Attorney General.
· Buy a Car, Get Free Gas. Mitsubishi is offering a different sort of incentive to sell cars – free gas. The automaker says customers who buy a 2005 model will get gas for a year. Buyers will get prepaid debt cards worth $1,500 to $2,500 worth of gas.
· 'Current Affair' Out, Geraldo Rivera In. The recycled news magazine "A Current Affair," which ran for a decade its first time around, has been canceled less than eight months after returning to the air. The series launched in March, will be replaced by "Geraldo at Large" with Geraldo Rivera.
· There must be money in the ice cream business. A Yemeni immigrant ice cream shop owner was found guilty Wednesday of illegally funneling $21.9 million overseas in a case stemming from a major terrorism investigation. Abad Elfgeeh, 50, was accused of transmitting money around the world without a license from bank accounts linked to his tiny storefront in Brooklyn.
· Dentist Allegedly Caught With Pants Down Near School. A family dentist in Orlando was charged with indecent exposure after he was allegedly caught with his pants down, performing an indecent act on himself near an elementary school.
· Scientology reaches out to Kate Moss. Scientology has a message for Kate Moss: We can help. Reps of the controversial religion are “reaching out” to the model, offering to help her beat her drug problem, says MSNBC's Jeannette Walls. Moss was recently dropped from a lucrative modeling contract when she was photographed snorting lines of coke.
· 'Mrs. Sheehan Goes to Washington' - a new road picture? She's mulling book and movie deals. She has a press secretary, and personal security. She doesn't have an agent yet, but there's someone to "handle" her schedule and field offers. She has reached that pinnacle of fame where she is known only by one name: Cindy. As in, "America Stands With Cindy." Cindy from Crawford. But not Cindy Crawford.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Esoteric [es·o·ter·ic] adj. 1. Difficult to understand; abstruse. 2. Not publicly disclosed; confidential. 3. Of rare, special, or unusual interest: Her software success was based on an esoteric programming language.
· Airbus gear has failed before. It may have looked dramatic and hair-raising on television, but the pilots who successfully landed their damaged Airbus jet Tuesday at Los Angeles International Airport did exactly what they were trained to do, a well-known aviation safety expert said. Aviation expert John Nance said he was more interested in the fact that there have been reports of two other incidents of nose wheel problems on the same kind of Airbus plane.
· The woman who made James Dean a star. James Dean, who became an American icon after being killed in a car crash at 24, has long been regarded as gay. In fact, discovered Paul Alexander, it was a passionate and previously unknown relationship with the actress Geraldine Page that helped launch his career.
· McDonald's New TV Ad Fights 'McJob' Image. McDonald's Corp., which has been trying to change the image of its counter jobs as low-paying and dead end, Wednesday unveiled a new television ad featuring Olympian Carl Lewis and others whose first jobs were at the Golden Arches.
· Spielberg not happy with old pal Cruise?. Tom Cruise shouldn't wait by the phone for his old "friend" Steven Spielberg, who directed him in "War of the Worlds," to call. Reports from Budapest and Paris, where Spielberg is filming "Munich," say the director is still steamed at Cruise for ranting, during what were supposed to be promotional appearances for the Martian-invasion film, against the widespread use of Ritalin to treat unruly children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder. One source said: "Steven and his wife [Kate Capshaw] have five children themselves and know some children for whom Ritalin does a lot of good.
· Red Robin settles lawsuit over tattoos. Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. agreed to pay $150,000 to settle a religious discrimination lawsuit brought by the EEOC on behalf of a fired employee. A manager had fired him over religious tattoos on his wrists.
· Japan Noodle Maker to Film TV Ad in Space. The makers of Japan's favorite instant ramen noodles will soon be airing a commercial that's truly out of this world. Starting next month, Nissin Food Products Co. will film a promotional spot on the International Space Station for Cup Noodle, featuring a sales pitch by a hungry Russian cosmonaut.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
· Hurricane Rita now stronger than Katrina. The latest information from the National Hurricane Center shows Hucrricane Rita is now more powerful than Katrina, and ranks as the 3rd most intense hurricane on record, just behind Hurricane Gilbert in 1988 and the 1935 Labor Day Hurricane.
· Just one cigarette a day can triple risk of fatal ilnesses. Smoking even one cigarette a day triples the risk of heart disease or lung cancer - and the effect is greater in women. A 30-year study of "light" smokers has shown that people who only light up with a drink in the evening still run a sharply increased risk of dying early.
· Mayor resigns while sex case pending. The Oswego, New York mayor resigned Wednesday in the wake of his arrest on federal charges of using a cell phone to offer money and drugs to solicit sex from two underage girls.
· Man gets 40 years for stealing millions. A former investment manager was sentenced Wednesday to 40 years in federal prison for stealing tens of millions of dollars from orphans and accident victims to spend on business ventures and luxury items. U.S. District Judge J. Phil Gilbert said he gave James R. Gibson, 60, the maximum prison time for preying on 183 victims, and ordered him to pay more than $83 million in restitution. "You are, without a doubt, the most arrogant, self-centered, manipulative person I've ever laid eyes on," the judge told Gibson.
· Pervert priest gets locked up - for second time. A Canadian priest was sentenced Wednesday in France to serve 12 years in prison for raping a young member of his French parish. He had moved to France after previously serving a 20-month sentence in a Canadian prison for pleading guilty to two charges of sexual abuse and one of sodomy against four teenage boys there.
· Moss loses another job. Chanel decided not to renew Kate Moss' contract Wednesday, as police said they were investigating allegations that she recently used cocaine. Moss has been the face of Chanel's Coco Mademoiselle perfume since 2002.
· eBay pulls Gordon helmet after bids top $10 million. Online auction site eBay pulled the item on Wednesday afternoon after bids topped $10 million. "We do pay attention when bidding gets out of control," said eBay spokesman Hani Durzy. The helmet was worn by Gordon during Sunday's Sylvania 300 at the New Hampshire International Speedway. An angry Gordon threw the helmet at Michael Waltrip's car after the two got into an accident.
· Girl Killed For Confronting Molestor, Family Says. A 13-year-old Ohio girl found shot to death in her bedroom may have been killed for trying to help an abused friend. Relatives say Katelind Caudill had alerted authorities that her friend was being molested. Police are now looking for her friend's stepfather.
· Airliner fakes emergency so passengers can watch soccer game. A chartered jet carrying 289 Gambian soccer fans pretended it needed to make an emergency landing so they could watch their team compete in the FIFA Under 17 World Championships, officials said Wednesday. The plane, claiming to be low on fuel, landed Tuesday near the stadium in Peru's northern coast city of Piura.
· Woman Sentenced For Having Sex With Fiance's Son. A woman who police say had sex with her fiance's 14-year-old son and later gave birth to the teenager's baby, has been sentenced to a year in jail. According to the teenager, she got him drunk and high on marijuana, and had sex with him several times in 2003.
· Why Waste An Ivy League Education On Mothers? Ivy League educations are being wasted on young women who fully intend to give up their careers someday to become mothers or part-time workers, according to a story yesterday in the New York Times.
· Lack of fire hydrant standards could cause trouble for San Francisco. If a big earthquake hits San Francisco and flames spread through the city, firefighters rushing in from elsewhere to help will encounter what could be a major problem - their hoses will not fit the city's hydrants.
· IRS Checks Plunge into S.F. Bay. Some 30,000 taxpayers in 13 states better be prepared to open their checkbooks again. Payments they made last week are now most likely at the bottom of the San Francisco Bay. The checks were lost early on the morning of Sept. 11, when the truck that was transporting them to an IRS lockbox got into an accident on the San Mateo Bridge. Thousands of pieces of mail were blown all around, including into the bay.
· Dr. Gray: Hurricane Rita Is 'Trouble With Capital T.' One of the world's most well-known hurricane forecasters warned that Hurricane Rita is going to be a "mother of a storm" and could be one of the worst he has ever seen when it makes landfall. "There is going to be hell to pay," Gray said. "This is trouble with a capital T. The only thing that really looks worst than this was Katrina."
· Bonds: Drop steroid probe. When the media questioned Barry Bonds about Congress' continued talk about steroid use by players, Bonds said, "I think we have other issues in this country to worry about that are a lot more serious. I think you guys should direct your efforts into taking care of that," the San Francisco Giants slugger said Tuesday before facing the Washington Nationals. "Talk about the athletes that are helping Katrina."
· Jurors Will See Judge's Alleged Sex Toy. Jurors hearing the case against a former judge accused of exposing himself in his Creek County courtroom will be allowed to see the sex toy at the center of the state's allegations, a judge ruled Tuesday in rejecting a defense motion. They also can hear testimony that a second "penis pump" was seen under former District Judge Donald Thompson's bench, among other evidence Thompson's attorneys sought to have barred from next week's scheduled trial.
· Man Wants Reward In Wendy's Finger Case. A Las Vegas man says it's time for Wendy's to serve up his $100,000 reward. Mike Casey said he helped the fast-food company unravel the scam involving a fingertip slipped into a bowl of chili in a restaurant in San Jose. Casey runs an asphalt company that employed both the man who lost the finger and the husband of the woman who claimed she found it in her Wendy's chili.
· Woman has heroic fight with stuck elevator - and wins. A St. Louis woman is telling a remarkable story about getting trapped in a downtown elevator. The woman says she and her 6 year old son were stuck for 12 hours, before she took drastic action.
· Former HealthSouth CFO Sentenced to One Week in Prison in Fraud. A federal judge sentenced former HealthSouth Corp. finance chief Mike Martin to a week in prison Tuesday for his role in what prosecutors described as a $2.7 billion accounting fraud.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Pugnacious [pug·na·cious] adj. 1. Quarrelsome or combative in nature; belligerent. 2. Expressing an argument or opinion very forcefully: Rather than maintaining a calm demeanor, his boss was quite pugnacious.
· Judge Declares Mistrial in Gotti Case. The judge in the John A. "Junior" Gotti racketeering case declared a mistrial on the most serious charges Tuesday and said she would likely grant bail to the jailed scion of the Gambino organized crime family. After eight days of deliberations, jurors said they were hopelessly deadlocked on all but one count.
· Dutch Talk-Show Host To Take Heroin On Air. The host of a new Dutch talk show plans to take heroin and LSD on the air in a program intended to reach young audiences on topics that touch their lives, producers said Wednesday.
· Fla. Chief Bans Women Firefighters From Burning Buildings. The city's fire chief has ordered women firefighters to temporarily stay out of burning buildings amid threats that their male colleagues might not protect them. Clearwater Fire & Rescue Chief Jamie D. Geer said he issued the directive last weekend after learning that the safety of some of the city's nine female firefighters had been threatened because they talked about quitting the local firefighters' union.
· Peter Jennings Honored at Carnegie Hall. At a music-filled memorial at Carnegie Hall, Peter Jennings was remembered Tuesday as a journalist with a childlike awe of the world, a devoted father and loyal Canadian who always carried a copy of the U.S. Constitution. A picture of a smiling Jennings, the sun in his face and blue skies behind him, was projected over the stage of the New York landmark. The audience of about 2,000 people was filled with luminaries: Mike Wallace, Brian Williams, Dan Rather, Tom Wolfe, Larry King, Jon Stewart, Charles Gibson, Al Sharpton, Alan Alda, George Stephanopoulos, Bob Schieffer, Michael Eisner, Elizabeth Vargas and her husband Marc Cohn.
· Gossip Meets the G-Men in Vast FBI Files. The Beach Boys. Frank Sinatra. Liberace. Sonically, the trio shared little - from the California group's soaring harmonies to Sinatra's saloon singing to Liberace's marshmallow soft vocals. But their offstage antics were music to the ears of the FBI, where all three became the subject of muckraking files in the agency's Washington headquarters. The portfolios contain innuendo and allegations, with the occasional revelation thrown in.
· Study: $95 billion spent on medical research. Total U.S. spending on medical research has doubled in the past decade to nearly $95 billion a year, though whether the money is being well spent needs much better scrutiny, a study has found.
· Fans Boo Madonna and Husband After Snub. Fans booed Madonna and her filmmaker husband, Guy Ritchie, at the London premiere of his new movie, "Revolver," on Tuesday after the couple walked past most of the crowd without signing autographs.
· Beware of car trouble flowing from Gulf area. Insurance companies will be writing off hundreds of thousands of flood-damaged cars as total losses because of Hurricane Katrina, with the insurers selling them for parts. The problem is that some people will buy those cars and, without disclosing their waterlogged past, sell them as bargains to buyers throughout the country.
· 'No title needed' on cover of Tom Wolfe novel. In an unusual publishing move, Tom Wolfe's most-recent novel, I Am Charlotte Simmons, will be printed without the title on the cover of its paperback edition - just its author's name in giant letters.
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
· Louisiana lawyers in sleazy bid to cash in on deadly hurricane. With dead bodies still floating in the streets of New Orleans, a pair of Louisiana lawyers are seeking to cash in on the killer hurricane by slapping the name Katrina on alcoholic beverages. In a new filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Andrew Vicknair and Harold Ehrenberg provided federal officials with a logo bearing the word Katrina, the phrase "Get Blown Away," and a small satellite image of the deadly storm.
· Car Slams Into 'Accident Center.' A 34-year-old man was ticketed Tuesday after he crashed his car through a chiropractic "accident center" in Orlando Tuesday. Police said Sargeous El Hage ran a red light, clipped another vehicle, lost control and drove into the Gutman Pain Accident Center where there were about 20 people inside a waiting room. [w/photo]
· U.S. Says Pope Benedict Can't Be Sued. The U.S. government has told a Texas court that Pope Benedict XVI should be given immunity from a lawsuit accusing him of conspiring to cover up the sexual molestation of three boys by a seminarian, court documents show.
· McCready: Pregnancy Led to Suicide Attempt. Mindy McCready, who was found unconscious from a drug overdose in a Florida hotel lobby in July, told a Williamson County court that she attempted suicide after learning she was pregnant.
· Rebecca Romijn Engaged to Jerry O'Connell. Rebecca Romijn, whose screen credits include the "X-Men" films and "Rollerball," is engaged to Jerry O'Connell. The couple became engaged over the weekend in New York after dating for a year.
· Mentally Retarded Man Tasered, Beaten by Chicago Police. Chicago police officers beat and tasered a mentally retarded man without provocation, and no arrests were made, says a lawsuit to be filed in federal court tomorrow.
· Japanese hogging hybrid parts? Ford Motor Co. could be offering more hybrid vehicles if it weren't for the shortage of specialized components, partly due to the "predatory" approach taken by some Japanese automakers, Ford Chief Operating Officer Jim Padilla said Tuesday.
· Chinese condom company unites Clinton and Lewinsky. A condom maker in southern China's Guangdong province is marketing its products under "Clinton" and "Lewinsky" brands and has registered the names as trademarks.
· FEMA Sends Trucks Full Of Ice For Katrina Victims To Maine. The trucks started arriving this weekend, and they're expected to keep coming through Sunday. City officials say they have no idea why the trucks are here, only that the city has been asked to help out with traffic problems.
· Cindy Sheehan to Hillary: 'End support for war, or lose job.' War protester Cindy Sheehan came to New York with a blunt warning. Mrs. Clinton is "waiting for the best political moment to say" she opposes the war, Ms. Sheehan said during a 15-minute speech. "You say it or you're losing your job," she said, provoking a roar of approval from the audience.
· Apple CEO Nixes ITunes Price Hike. Apple Computer Inc. CEO Steve Jobs vowed Tuesday to resist music companies' "greedy" demands for price increases on the iTunes music download site and warned that such a move would encourage piracy.
· Charge recommended after underwear put on vehicle mirrors. Police have recommended that a 57-year-old man be charged with disorderly conduct after he was caught on videotape hanging women's underwear from the mirrors of 30 to 50 vehicles at the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department.
· Emotional Rather blasts 'climate of fear' in newsrooms. Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather said Monday that there is a climate of fear running through newsrooms stronger than he has ever seen in his more than four-decade career. Rather said politicians "of every persuasion" had gotten better at applying pressure on the conglomerates that own the broadcast networks, calling it a "new journalism order."
· Oops! Amber Frey picks wrong dad for first child. Amber Frey was in court Monday morning in a battle over her daughter's paternity. It turns out the man who thought he was the father of Frey's oldest child is not. Anthony Flores was in a Madera County court on Monday to stop child support payments to Frey. A judge agreed. The ruling comes after a recent DNA test shows Flores is not the father of Frey's child.
· Update: Clothing Chain H&M Drops Kate Moss Ads. H&M initially said it would proceed with the campaign, but company spokeswoman Liv Asarnoj said Tuesday that "after evaluating the situation, we have decided that a campaign with Kate Moss is not consistent with H&M's clear disassociation from drugs."
· John Wayne Bobbit Arrested - Again. The infamous John Wayne Bobbit is in trouble with the law again. Las Vegas police say he was arrested on Saturday for domestic violence and battery. He was taken to city jail and spent at least 24 hours behind bars.
· Top 10 pick for most pointless celebrity. You know who they are. They're everywhere. They're hosting contests, starring in their own reality shows and constantly doing something wack-a-doodle to make it onto this page. Pointless celebrities permeate the airways, and, like a circus freak show, they catch our attention because as much as they annoy us, we sure love to hate them.
· Wis. Librarians Pose for Sexy Calendar. Projecting an image very different from that in which librarians are usually portrayed, six area library administrators have produced a sexy calendar they are selling to raise money for their libraries.
· Stewart Gets Through Her 'Yale' Experience. Martha Stewart's euphemism for prison was to call it "Yale." She explained her coping mechanism in an appearance Monday on David Letterman's "Late Show" to promote her two new TV shows.
· Cops allege 'porn star' also $1,000 prostitute. A "porn star" who turns 49 next month apparently timed a visit to Chicago to coincide with a convention, and was arrested after she unwittingly arranged with an undercover officer to perform oral sex for $1,000 at a downtown hotel, police said.
· Printing error turns police Aboriginal liaison officers into 'ALCOs.' They are police who are supposed to defuse disputes involving Aborigines, but a typing error turned them into ALCOs, which is Australian slang for alcoholics.
· Breast-flashing video proceeds donated to Katrina victims. Video makers notorious for filming women flashing their breasts said they will donate revenues from "Girls Gone Wild" episodes tied to Mardi Gras to the Red Cross to help Hurricane Katrina victims.
· High School Wrestler Practices With 450-Pound Bear. High school athlete Josh Herbert is not easily intimidated by opponents. After all, he has a 6 -foot, 5 -inch, 450-pound bear for a playmate. Josh's family raised Buddy, the 8-year-old American black bear, since it was a cub. Now, Buddy is a lot bigger than Josh – but still likes to wrestle with him. But Josh, the Middletown, Ohio, area senior, said the de-clawed bear never gets too rough and will back off if he shouts "No!" Herbert said, "He knows when to stop."
· Casual Male hope to grow by losing 'big.' New management at Casual Male Big & Tall has discovered what somehow eluded their predecessors for decades: men who buy big- and tall-sized apparel aren't particularly proud of being called big and tall. So the chain will change its name to the more athletic-sounding Casual Male XL.
· Falsely Accused Boy Gets $6.2 Million. A boy falsely accused of killing an 11-year-old girl seven years ago agreed Monday to settle his lawsuit against the city and two police detectives for $6.2 million, a judge announced.
· Star Jones Reynolds Donates Emmys Dress. Star Jones Reynolds is donating the dress off her back from the Emmy Awards to help Hurricane Katrina victims. "There is no better way to allow your clothes to keep on giving you pleasure than to share them with someone else," Jones said.
· Romance springs up in the wake of disaster. They met the Tuesday after Katrina, when John Clarke waded down to Fritzel's, a bar on Bourbon Street. He'd heard there were working pay phones around there, and he needed a drink. Heidi Ochs was bartending. Business was bad. The city was hell. They got to talking. She had an apartment on Lee Circle but no food or water; he had those things in a ruined house over on the Esplanade.
· Trucker Allegedly Stashed Cocaine Worth $3 Million Among Tomatoes. A man hauling a truckload of tomatoes from California was charged with allegedly trying to smuggle more than $3 million of cocaine packed within the cargo and detected by gamma-ray imaging, officials said Monday.
Monday, September 19, 2005
· Arrest of former Mexican president sought. A special federal prosecutor on Monday sought the arrest of ex-President Luis Echeverria and other former officials for their alleged involvement in the massacre of student protesters in 1968.
· NASA Estimates Moon Rocket Will Cost $104 billion. NASA estimated Monday it will cost $104 billion to return astronauts to the moon by 2018 in a new rocket that combines the space shuttle with the capsule of an earlier NASA era.
· Robby Gordon avoids suspension in NASCAR tantrum. Robby Gordon and Kasey Kahne avoided suspensions Monday when NASCAR penalized them for road-rage incidents in New Hampshire. Gordon was fined $35,000 and docked 50 points in the driver standings for intentionally trying to hit Michael Waltrip's car during Sunday's race at New Hampshire Speedway, throwing his helmet at Waltrip's car, and cursing during a television interview.
· Chinese-Canadians seek apology and cash from Canada. Chinese-Canadians seeking an apology and compensation for the "racist" head tax once collected from immigrants want a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin - and up to $1.2 billion.
· Kate Moss' Drug Mess. Hell hath no fury like a tabloid scorned. Just two months ago, Kate Moss won a substantial settlement from London's Daily Mirror after it published a story alleging that she had collapsed in a cocaine-fueled coma in Spain in 2001. Last week, the Mirror struck back, publishing images of the supermodel doing a sizable amount of cocaine at a recent late-night recording session for her boyfriend.
· Home Runs Drop to Lowest Level in 8 Years. Baseball had a brownout this year, with home runs dropping to their lowest level in eight years. Florida's Lenny Harris said. "I think the drug policy had a lot to do with it. It changed a lot of guys' diets. There are too many people having off years."
· Judge Dismisses Groping Charges Against Christian Slater. A judge has dismissed groping charges against Christian Slater. The 36-year-old had been accused of grabbing a woman on a New York street in May as he was arguing with his girlfriend.
· Woman Admits Lengthy Sexual 'Relationship' With 8-Year-Old. A 30-year woman admitted in court Monday that she had a lengthy sexual relationship with an 8-year-old neighbor whom police say she considered a fantasy boyfriend. In a deal with prosecutors, Tammy Imre pleaded guilty to a charge of risk of injury to a minor. She faces six years in prison when she is sentenced Nov. 4.
· Students slip past visa check. In its first year alone, the program detected more than 36,000 potential violations of student visas nationwide, of which only 1,600 were investigated, according to the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which operates the system.
· 25-Foot Pig Greets Returning Lawmakers. A big, pink inflatable pig with the words "Repeal the Illegal Legislative Pay Raise" emblazoned on its side is causing quite a stir outside the Capitol today, where state senators are set to get back to work after their summer break.
· Man Who Shot Reagan Seeks Overnight Visits Home. Lawyers for the man who shot President Reagan in 1981 are scheduled to return to a federal courtroom in Washington today to renew his efforts to make overnight visits to his parents' home near Williamsburg. Over the past two years, Hinckley has successfully completed 12 visits with his parents in the Washington area, including some overnight visits at a hotel.
· Richard Hatch to Be Arraigned Today. Television's first "Survivor" winner starts a new ordeal today. Richard Hatch who won the first season of the reality show is scheduled to be arraigned today on charges that he failed to pay taxes on his winnings.
· 'Raymond' goes out on top. "Desperate Housewives" may have had all the attention, but "Everybody Loves Raymond" won the big award -- best comedy -- at the 57th Annual Emmy Awards. "Raymond" also picked up awards for supporting actor Brad Garrett and supporting actress Doris Roberts.
» Not everyone was a fan of "Desperate Housewives." "It's great to be here on the brink of losing to 'Desperate Housewives,'" Will Arnett of "Arrested Development," which was nominated along with "Housewives" for best comedy series, said on the red carpet. "'Desperate Housewives' is not a comedy," he said. "It's a soap opera that has a few funny moments in it."
Word of The Day by WordThink
Incongruous [in·con·gru·ous] adj. 1. Lacking in harmony; incompatible. 2. Not in agreement, as with principles; inconsistent: a plan incongruous with reason. 3. Not in keeping with what is correct, proper, or logical; inappropriate: incongruous behavior.
· Psychopaths could be best financial traders-research. A team of U.S. scientists has found the emotionally impaired are more willing to gamble for high stakes and that people with brain damage may make good financial decisions, the Times newspaper reported on Monday.
· In Search For Bodies, Looters' Huge Caches Pop Up. It was like a modern-day treasure map - a computerized diagram of neighborhoods with codes marking the addresses where National Guard soldiers came upon caches of goods taken by looters in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
· Top 10 things "Not to Say" to a car dealer. The dealership experience can be extremely stressful, but it doesn't have to be. You could know everything there is to know about the cars you're considering, but that's only a fraction of the buying process. If you want that seductive new sedan at a good price, you're probably going to need to know what to say — and more importantly, what not to say.
· Raunchy rapper heads for jail. Raunchy rapper Lil Kim is planning to catch up on her reading when she enters jail today. The hip-hop star, real name Kimberley Jones, is preparing to start serving a 366-day sentence for perjury and she's determined to make the most of it. She says, "I plan to take lots of books."
Sunday, September 18, 2005
· Bomb-collared robber seemed unaware of risk. Recently released images of a pizza deliveryman who robbed a bank, then was killed by a bomb fastened around his neck, suggest he was unaware of any threat to his life, according to the FBI.
· Michael Schiavo To Tell His Side Of The Story In Book. Michael Schiavo is telling his side of the story in the end-of-life case that divided much of the country. Schiavo's wife Terri suffered a brain injury in 1990 that left her in what some doctors called "a persistent vegetative state." She died earlier this year after a bitter court battle between her husband and her parents.
· Toddler unconsious after accidentally ingesting heroin, cocaine. A 4-year-old boy was hospitalized Sunday after he ingested a mixture of heroin and cocaine that he pulled out of a man's pocket. Raymond Medina, 25, of Jamestown, was grocery shopping with the toddler, who kept taking candy from Medina's pockets. Medina also had a bag of drugs in his pocket, which the boy pulled out and ingested, according the WGRZ in Buffalo.
· 'Heaven' Beats the Devil at Box Office. The Reese Witherspoon, Mark Ruffalo romantic comedy "Just Like Heaven" debuted at No. 1 with an estimated $16.5 million in ticket sales, bumping the courtroom horror film "The Exorcism of Emily Rose" into second place.
· NTSB Says Commuter Train Was Speeding. A commuter train was going almost 60 mph above the speed limit just before it derailed, killing two people and injuring dozens, the acting chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board said Sunday.
· Laywer to sue insurers over Katrina-flooded homes. A leading class-action attorney who took part in the successful case against tobacco companies on Friday promised to make insurance companies pay for damage caused by Hurricane Katrina even if homeowners did not have flood insurance.
· Tori Spelling: Splitsville, 90210. Beverly Hills, 90210 grad Tori Spelling has exiled her husband to another ZIP code. A publicist for the actress confirmed Friday that Spelling and Charlie Shanian have separated after a year of marriage.
· Author, 21, enjoys success. When Christopher Paolini walks on the high school stage for his book signing appearance, wearing jeans and carrying a black backpack, he could be mistaken for a student. But he gets a rock star reception from his fans, with wild cheers and flashing cameras. Paolini, just 21, is the author of two best-selling fantasy epics aimed at children - "Eragon" and the new best seller "Eldest." In its first week of release last month, "Eldest" sold more than 425,000 hardcover copies, making it the biggest single-week sale ever recorded for a Random House Children's Books title. There are 1.8 million copies in print.
· Catholic festival features X-rated vendors. Vendors at the Catholic street fair in Little Italy set out X-rated T-shirts that could land them in the confessional for an extended visit. The eye-popping shirts with lewd slogans about breasts, oral sex and passing gas showed up at several stands in Little Italy after the festival opened Thursday.
· Man Rescued After 18 Days in Attic. Day after day, for more than two weeks, the 76-year-old man sat trapped and alone in his attic, sipping from a dwindling supply of water until it ran out. No food. No way out of a house ringed by foul floodwaters.
· 'Ugly' mom sues ABC for nixing makeover. The producers of "Extreme Makeover" promised Deleese Williams "a Cinderella-like" fix for a deformed jaw, crooked teeth, droopy eyes and tiny boobs that would "transform her life and destiny." But when the ABC reality show dumped the Texas mom the night before the life-changing plastic surgeries, it shattered her family's dream and triggered her sister Kellie McGee's suicide, says a lawsuit filed in L.A.
· London Fashion Week Hit by Fur Protest. Designer Julien MacDonald kicked off London Fashion Week with a display of flamboyant colors and patterns, but was briefly interrupted when animal rights protesters jumped onto the runway.
· 57th Emmys to Begin on a Nostalgic Note. Nostalgia kicks in at the Emmys even before the curtain goes up. The 57th annual show begins Sunday with video splashed on black-and-white screens in which a quartet of recognizable faces talk about their favorite award moments over the years. Three are earnest. The other is Billy Crystal.
· Looters not Country & Western fans. The Wal-Mart store in uptown New Orleans, built within the last year, survived the storm but was destroyed by looters. "They took everything — all the electronics, the food, the bikes," said John Stonaker, a Wal-Mart security officer. "People left their old clothes on the floor when they took new ones. The only thing left are the country-and-western CDs. You can still get a Shania Twain album."
· Government Credit Cards for Katrina Expenses Draw Scrutiny. Lawmakers and watchdog groups worry that allowing federal employees to charge up to $250,000 on their government-issued credit cards for Hurricane Katrina-related expenses will lead to a repeat of past abuses.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
· Child's afterschool tantrum thwarts officer. A girl, upset over a tetherball game, throws a tantrum during an afterschool program at a St. Petersburg, Florida elementary school. She stomps on a table, tears things from the wall, and then pushes a television off a stand. It's a strikingly familiar scene. Six months ago, St. Petersburg police made international news by handcuffing a tempestuous Fairmount kindergartener as a video camera rolled. Last week, police were called to the school again. This time, the officer stood and watched, waiting for the girl's father to arrive.
· Islamic School of Sex? Error chagrins feds. The Islamic School of Seattle is a small, private institution for pre-kindergarten to middle-school children. It does not have sex education in its curriculum. So you might understand why school officials were a little surprised — shocked, actually — to find the school listed on a U.S. Department of Education Web site as the Islamic School of Sex.
· Police Find More Than Expected At City Sale. An Oklahoma City man is accused of killing his ex-girlfriend and holding a moving sale at the woman's apartment while her body was stashed in a back bedroom, police said.
· Mickelson shoots hole-in-one. Phil Mickelson used a 7-iron for a hole-in-one at the 200-yard No. 7 hole during Saturday’s third round of the 84 Lumber Classic. Mickelson’s ace was the fourth in three years of PGA Tour play on the course.
· Convicted Calif. sex offender shot, killed by alleged victim. A northern Idaho man who was shot and killed by a woman he was attacking was a registered sex offender convicted in California, Bonner County Sheriff's Capt. John Valdez says.
· Out-of-state gangs 'invaded' New Orleans. Well-organized, heavily armed, out-of-state street gangs from as far away as Memphis, Dallas and Miami invaded New Orleans during the Hurricane Katrina evacuation of the city and turned it into a "free-fire zone," said military analyst Col. David Hunt.
· Bel Aire police mistake sunflower plants for marijuana. The police thought they'd found marijuana plants growing in a former mayor's back yard, where his wife sometimes entertains members of the senior citizens' group she leads. Officers took pictures. They showed them to an assistant district attorney, who took a search warrant application to a judge, who signed it. And when police in this Wichita suburb went back to Harold and Carolyn Smith's house for a closer look, they found ... Sunflowers.
· Doctor Pushes for First Face Transplant. In the next few weeks, five men and seven women will secretly visit the Cleveland Clinic to interview for the chance to have a radical operation that's never been tried anywhere in the world. Dr. Maria Siemionow will study their cheekbones, lips and noses, and ultimately endure the ultimate identity crisis. Siemionow wants to attempt a face transplant.
· Depp immortalized at Hollywood theater. The hands that were replaced with cutlery in "Edward Scissorhands" and wore gloves in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" are now immortalized in concrete. Johnny Depp signed his name and placed his handprints and footprints in wet concrete in front of the Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.
· New York says rabbi must stop 'oral suction' circumcisions. A Monsey rabbi linked to three infants who contracted herpes has agreed to stop performing oral suction circumcisions in New York City until a religious panel investigates the method. Yitzchok Fischer has been under a temporary restraining order issued by a New York City court not to perform oral-suction circumcisions.
· Coast Guard: Crews Saved 6,500 After Katrina. During its first week of operations in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the U.S. Coast Guard saved the lives of nearly 6,500 people, according to figures released Saturday.
· Major retailer accepts Moss' regret over cocaine allegations. Fashion retailer H&M said it would use British supermodel Kate Moss in an upcoming advertising campaign after hearing her explanation and regret following accusations she took illegal drugs. A spokeswoman for London's Hennes & Mauritz told Reuters on Saturday company representatives had met with Moss following the publication of pictures on Thursday in the Daily Mirror, which the British tabloid said showed her snorting cocaine.
· FEMA pulls many workers from Katrina zone. FEMA bureaucrats yesterday infuriated exhausted Hurricane Katrina responders and lawmakers with yet another blunder. Federal Emergency Management Agency leaders ordered officials in the agency's Preparedness Division to stop all Katrina relief efforts and begin a long-planned move from agency headquarters to new offices in Virginia by Monday.
· Officer Who Shot Disabled Teen Promoted. The Denver police officer who shot and killed a developmentally disabled teen has gotten a promotion and a raise. James Turney is now a police technician, a step above his previous rank of patrol officer.
· Prison Locked Down After Warden Loses Keys. Prisoners at the Jacksonville, Illinois Correctional Center spent four days on lockdown after an assistant warden lost a set of keys. The set of about 10 keys, which was still missing Friday, included a master key that opens doors to cell houses and two prison wings.
· Muslim threatens "jihad" over Burger King packaging. Fast-food chain, Burger King, is withdrawing its ice-cream cones after the lid of the dessert offended a Muslim. The man claimed the design resembled the Arabic inscription for Allah, and branded it sacrilegious, threatening a "jihad."
· Jeep, Doing 80MPH, Drives Under Plane To Fix Landing Gear. It was a literal fix on the fly at the New Smyrna Beach Airport. Three men in a jeep drove within feet of a small plane to fix its landing gear while it was still in the air. The jeep had to go just about as fast as it could go down the runway, and the small Cessna had to slow to almost stalling speed for it to work. "It's not something, from a safety standpoint, we would promote under normal circumstances," said New Smyrna Beach spokesperson Shannon Lewis.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Exacerbate [ex·ac·er·bate] transitive verb. To make more violent, bitter, or severe; to irritate or make worse [the prosecution's witness may exacerbate her legal problems].
· Man Charged With Attacking Scooby Doo. An off-duty corrections officer in Florida was charged with attacking a costumed Scooby Doo character for no apparent reason at Universal Studios theme park in Orlando, according to police.
· Starbucks cup promotes homosexuality? Officials at Baylor University told the Starbucks store on its Waco, Texas, campus to remove a cup said to promote homosexuality. The offending cup reads: "My only regret about being gay is that I repressed it for so long. I surrendered my youth to the people I feared when I could have been out there loving someone. Don't make that mistake yourself."
· Freeman's Co-Star Gets Different View. Boxers or briefs? Becca Gardner got a backside view of co-star Morgan Freeman for a scene in "An Unfinished Life." In the new movie directed by Lasse Hallstrom, Freeman plays a ranchman who was mauled by a bear, making him dependent on morphine. Becca's character has to give him an injection. "I was kind of nervous to see, like, his butt, and I pulled down his pants and he was wearing a thong!" the 15-year-old told The Associated Press in an interview.
· Can shields and spray keep photo cop away?. They don't sleep and they don't blink. But, some Internet-based companies hope, the cameras that photograph drivers running red lights will be blinded by products designed to obscure license plate numbers.
Friday, September 16, 2005
· Muslim groups outraged by Romney comments. Muslim groups and civil libertarians demanded an apology from Gov. Mitt Romney on Friday for his comments about wiretapping mosques and monitoring foreign students. But the governor refused, saying he was only advocating for improved homeland security.
· Jeb Bush's Son Arrested For Public Intoxication, Resisting Arrest. John Ellis Bush, the youngest son of Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, was arrested early Friday and charged with public intoxication and resisting arrest, law enforcement officials in Texas said.
· Student Arrested After Pilot Uniform Found. A university student from Egypt was ordered held without bond after prosecutors said they found a pilot's uniform, chart of Memphis International Airport and a DVD titled "How an Airline Captain Should Look and Act" in his apartment. The FBI is investigating whether Mahmoud Maawad, 29, had any connection to terrorists. He is awaiting trial on charges of wire fraud and fraudulent use of a Social Security number.
· Update: Zellweger's tries to explain "fraud" claim. Renee Zellweger attempted to set the record straight on the annulment citing "fraud," calling the term "simply legal language and not a reflection of Kenny's character." Attornies familiar with California law called the "fraud" declaration "very unusual for a high-profile case." "Fraud is a very high standard," attorney John Mayoue said. "For a court to accept this for fraud, it's going to have to be a very egregious situation."
· Singer Mindy McCready Released on Bond. Mindy McCready has been released from jail on $50,000 bond on a charge of probation violation. McCready, who had a No. 1 hit in 1996 with "Guys Do It All the Time," had been jailed since Aug. 26, when she was arrested in Florida.
· Woman Sentenced For Bogus Rape Charge. There was an emotional end to an unusual trial Thursday when Rebecca Harland was convicted of having falsely accused an ex-boyfriend of rape and was sentenced to prison for perjury. "Why should my sister get three years in jail for being raped? Why should she? It wasn't for being raped, it was for lying about who did it," said Harland's sister.
· Laser pointing dad can be prosecuted under Patriot Act. Federal prosecutors can use the Patriot Act against a Parsippany man accused of shining a hand-held laser at two aircraft. David Banach's lawyers said the post nine-eleven law was not intended to be used against someone who is not a terrorist.
· Flashback: Blanco Addresses FEMA Payback Issue. Last April, Governor Kathleen Blanco said if the state is forced to pay back the federal government more than $30 million, the state's children and sick will suffer. A federal Office of Inspector General's report says the money should have been used to buy out homes that are in flood zones, but instead was used for a 2002 Ford Crown Victoria, audio and video equipment, office supplies, travel, professional dues, charitable donations, an L.L. Bean briefcase, a rain coat, and a trip to Germany by a Louisiana Homeland Security person as money that has to be sent back.
· Parents sue KU over student's fatal fall. An Illinois couple has sued the University of Kansas, claiming the school is liable in the death of their son. Eric J. Wellhausen fell to his death in September 2003 after he climbed out the window of his seventh-floor dormitory room in Lawrence, apparently to smoke on the ledge outside.
· "Fraud" reason for Zellweger split. Renee Zellweger, who played the lovelorn Brit in "Bridget Jones's Diary," and country music star Kenny Chesney will have their four-month-old marriage annulled, Chesney's publicist, Holly Gleason, and Zellweger's Los Angeles-based publicist Nanci Ryder, confirmed to The Associated Press on Thursday. In court papers filed Wednesday, Zellweger listed "fraud" as the reason for the breakup but did not elaborate.
· Katrina Church Sign Suggests God Punished New Orleans. A sidewalk sign outside of a Medford, Mass. church suggesting Hurricane Katrina is God's way of punishing New Orleans because of sin has angered several people in the area. The New England Baptist Church sign asked the question, "New Orleans - Natural Disaster or God's Anger With Sin?"
· Tom Waits sues over alleged soundalike. Singer-songwriter Tom Waits said Thursday he has filed a lawsuit against a unit of automaker General Motors Corp. and a German advertising agency for allegedly using a soundalike in a series of European ads. Waits' lawyer, said the singer was approached numerous times about doing the ads last year, but declined, citing a policy of not doing commercials. He said the firm then hired a soundalike and the ads aired earlier this year.
· Bush pledges nation's help for Gulf Coast. In a nationally televised address from Jackson Square in the historic French Quarter of New Orleans, Bush outlined his plans to assist recovery efforts and to prevent bureaucratic errors of the sort that slowed the response to Hurricane Katrina.
· Erma Bombeck Center for Writing calls Tabloid Column 'Timeless.' The Erma Bombeck Center at the University of Dayton says "The 'shocking but true' Tabloid Column provides enough material for humor writers to write until the end of time."
· FEMA storm relief cards being used at strip clubs. On the heels of a report earlier this week that Atlanta area Katrina victims were using $2,000 debit cards to purchase luxury items like Louis Vuitton handbags, Houston police yesterday discovered the cards, provided by FEMA and the Red Cross, being used at strip clubs.
· Reuters Explains Photo Of Bush Bathroom Note. Bush is shown writing: "I think I may need a bathroom break. Is this possible." The photo, which quickly became fodder for blogs and e-mails among friends, was taken by Rick Wilking, a contract photographer based in Denver who recently covered the flooding in New Orleans.
· Man Kills Self After Leaving Radio Contest For Truck. A man who'd been trying to win a pickup truck in a contest in Texas left the event Thursday, and killed himself. Police in Longview said Richard Vega had been taking part in the "Hands on a Hardbody" contest at a Nissan dealership. Participants have to have one hand flat on the pickup at all times. The one who lasts the longest gets to keep the truck. Police said Vega crossed the street to a Kmart where he got a 12-gauge shotgun and killed himself.
· Florida teenager wears racist T-shirt that triggers fight. An 18-year-old Fleming Island, Florida high school student wore a T-shirt that had a cartoon depicting a group of hooded Klansmen standing outside a church, waving to two others who had just pulled away in a car reading "Just married." Two black men in nooses were being dragged behind.
· National Guard Retrieves Cash From Flooded New Orleans Vault. National Guardsmen used armored vehicles to retrieve wads of soggy cash from a flooded-out vault a few blocks from the Superdome. As much as 75 percent of the cash was ruined in the floodwaters, the armored car company, Loomis, Fargo & Co. said. The money will be destroyed by the Federal Reserve.
Thursday, September 15, 2005
· Renee Zellweger and Kenny Chesney Split. Renee Zellweger and country music star Kenny Chesney will have their four-month-old marriage annulled. Chesney's publicist, Holly Gleason, confirmed on Thursday that the couple have split, bringing to an end a whirlwind romance that began shortly before a surprise wedding in May.
· Looting Charge Angers Church Deaconess. Merlene Maten undoubtedly stands out in the prison where she has been held since Hurricane Katrina. The 73-year-old church deaconess, never before in trouble with the law, now sleeps among hardened criminals. Her bail is a stiff $50,000. Her offense? Police say the grandmother from New Orleans took $63.50 in goods from a looted deli the day after Katrina struck.
· A bad day for a school bus driver. The school bus was unable to pass two parked cars. "You don't know how to drive," taunted a 13-year-old boy in the back. "I can drive better than you. Let's get going." When the bus was finally able to move, Stanley Cardonick hit the gas, speeding to make up time. Minutes later, a motorcycle cop pulled him over for doing 51 in a 35 mph zone and gave him a $179 speeding ticket. It was already a bad day for Cardonick, but the biggest blow was the same boy punching him in the face, knocking him out the front door and breaking his nose. [with photo]
· Female fugitive surrenders in $3.1 million Las Vegas armored car heist. A fugitive in a multimillion dollar Las Vegas Strip armored car heist is turning herself in to federal authorities. 33-year-old Heather Catherine Tallchief isn't denying she drove an armored car loaded with $3.1 million away from the Circus Circus hotel-casino in 1993.
· Dead actress' pal attacks Phil Spector's legal team over stalling tactics. Late actress Lana Clarkson's former agent has lashed out at Phil Spector's legal team - for stalling the music producer's upcoming murder trial. After learning the trial, which was set to begin tomorrow, is set for another delay, Clarkson's ex-publicist Edward Lozzi has blasted attorney Bruce Cutler for allegedly stalling the proceedings.
· Dirt biker lives through lightning strike. A gold chain and crucifix melted around his neck when a lightning bolt struck Jason Crawford in the head while he and his brother were riding dirt bikes in Gunnison County, Colorado. The bolt melted part of his helmet, fractured his skull and left burn scars on his chest and left arm.
· Government gone amuck. As violence, death and misery gripped New Orleans and the surrounding parishes in the days after Hurricane Katrina, a leadership vacuum, bureaucratic red tape and a defensive culture paralyzed volunteers' attempts to help. For example, firefighters who answered a nationwide call for help were first sent to Atlanta for FEMA training sessions on sexual harassment, and one doctor arriving at New Orleans airport tried to help some of the hundreds of sick people, only to be told by FEMA that they were worried about the legal liability.
· Man gets prison in Cameron Diaz topless photo case. A Los Angeles photographer who was convicted of trying to sell topless pictures of actress Cameron Diaz after forging her signature on a contract was sentenced Thursday to nearly four years in prison. John Rutter, who prosecutors accused of trying to blackmail Diaz for $3 million over the steamy, bondage-themed photos taken before she was famous, was found guilty in July of attempted grand theft, forgery and perjury.
· College columnist fired for story on airport security. A UNC-Chapel Hill student was fired from The Daily Tar Heel, the school’s student newspaper, Wednesday after she wrote a column on airport security that maintained Arabs should be “stripped naked and cavity-searched if they get within 100 yards of an airport.”
· Dutch Millionaire's Daughter Released. Kidnappers demanding a ransom of 660 pounds of cocaine released the daughter of a wealthy Dutch industrialist unharmed, police said Thursday. It was not clear whether any ransom was paid.
· Finger pointing circles back to local New Orleans government. The unveiling of the Mardi Gras Fountain was celebrated this year in typical New Orleans style. The cost of $2.4 million was paid by the Orleans Levee Board, the state agency whose main job is to protect the levees surrounding New Orleans — the same levees that failed after Katrina hit. Beyond the fountain, there's the $15 million spent on two overpasses that helped gamblers get to Bally's riverboat casino. Critics tried and failed to put some of that money into flood protection.
· Central Fla. Sex Offenders Rally For Rights. Hundreds of sex offenders in Central Florida who say new laws restricting where they can live and work are not only unfair but also unconstitutional are expected to rally in Palm Bay, Fla., tonight.
· Savvy low-fare shoppers add to airlines' woes. As Northwest Airlines, Delta Air Lines and other major carriers fall into bankruptcy and disarray, I keep having this guilty twinge: Are passengers partly to blame for the unstable state of air travel? Crazed airline executives (who must be sniffing way too many jet fumes) keep selling their product way below cost. Result? Delays, cancellations, tiny seats, bare-bones service, pressure from Wall Street, then, oops, bankruptcy.
· Slipping fault may increase quake risk. The ground isn't shaking, but a geologic fault in the Pacific Northwest has been silently slipping for the past 11 days — and may be raising the risk of a major earthquake. Scientists say an earthquake off the coast of Washington, Oregon and Vancouver Island in British Columbia may be up to 30 times more likely over the next two weeks while the unusual seismic event, called "episodic tremor and slip," is under way.
· Time Warner plots 'AOL - MSN merger.' Microsoft and Time Warner are holding "advanced" talks that could lead to the merger of their MSN and AOL internet businesses. Sources claim that Time Warner is looking to sell a stake of AOL to Microsoft.
· Man finally released from jail for kissing tot's belly button. Charbel Hamaty spent six months in jail in Raleigh, N.C., after being arrested last year for "molesting" his infant son, with the evidence consisting of family snapshots of Hamaty playfully kissing the nude tot's belly button. Only after a protest campaign did a judge finally dismiss the charge.
· Tampa Father Dies Leaving Memorial Motorcycle Ride For Son. William Marshall called for a memorial motorcycle run to honor of his 18-year-old son, who died six months ago in a motorcycle accident. But the friends and relatives who gathered Tuesday to remember Marshall's son soon found themselves grieving the Hillsborough County father as well.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Innocuous [in·noc·u·ous] adj. 1. Having no adverse effect; harmless. 2. Not likely to offend or provoke to strong emotion; insipid. [the seemingly innocuous e-mail actually contained a malicious virus].
· Rape victim convicted on 4 counts of perjury. Scott Smith always insisted he had nothing to do with the rape of a former girlfriend in the courtyard of a South Boston apartment building on Labor Day weekend in 1999. Yesterday, a Suffolk Superior Court jury agreed with him, even though he was not on trial. After deliberating about four hours, jurors convicted Rebecca Harland of Dorchester on four counts of perjury for lying to a grand jury when she identified Smith as the rapist.
· Death rate from all causes combined fell 32% in 30 years. The U.S. death rate from all causes of death combined decreased by 32 percent between 1970 and 2002, with the largest decreases for heart disease and stroke, but with an increase in death rates for diabetes and COPD (lung disease), according to an article in the September 14 issue of JAMA.
· Edison policeman accused of fleeing naked from crash. An Edison, New Jersey police officer accused of running naked from the scene of an accident after crashing his BMW into the back of a truck on Route 27 has been charged with assault by auto and hindering his own apprehension.
· Woman Sues Rolex, Claims Rash. A Hong Kong woman has sued Rolex, alleging that a watch she bought caused her psychological trauma because she had to wear long sleeves to cover up an itchy, unsightly skin allergy triggered by a label on the underside of the luxury timepiece.
· WWII Soldier's Last Letter Makes It Home. It took more than 60 years, but the final letter of a soldier killed in World War II finally made it home. Gary Mathis bought a box of old newspapers at a yard sale in Kansas, and discovered the letter inside a newspaper from 1915. The letter's envelope has military post office markings dated March 6, 1944.
· Martha Stewart Developing New Magazine. Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc., Stewart's New York-based media company, is "actively researching" the prospects for launching a lifestyle magazine for women over 30, spokeswoman Elizabeth Estroff said.
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
· Race still divisive in mayoral campaign. About eight in every 10 Detroit voters are African Americans. The two candidates in the mayoral election are black. In the six weeks since the primary narrowed the field to Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and former deputy mayor Freman Hendrix, many have attacked Hendrix, trying to convince Detroiters he's not "black enough" to be their mayor.
· Katrina evacuees involved in Texas school fight. A fight between a group of displaced New Orleans students and their new classmates at a Houston high school ended with three teenagers hospitalized and five under arrest.
· Philly's biggest loser drops 120 pounds with cookies. NBC's newest season of The Biggest Loser premiered Tuesday night, so an NBC reporter went back to revisit last year's loser. Dave Pickel used to weigh 312 pounds. Now he is skinny at 190 pounds. So, how did he do it? He actually lost weight on the cookie diet. He ate six nutritious, filling, hunger-suppressing cookies a day. He then ate a sensible dinner.
· Britney Spears Has Baby Boy. Britney Spears has given birth to a baby boy, Us Weekly reported. The baby was born Wednesday by Caesarean section at the Santa Monica UCLA Medical Center in California, the magazine said.
· Arrest Warrant For Dennis Rodman. An arrest warrant has been issued for former NBA star Dennis Rodman, who's accused of failing to appear for arraignment on two Colorado traffic citations. Judge Russell Granger signed the arrest warrant today.
· Heidi Klum Names Baby Seal After Father. Heidi Klum has named her newborn son after her Grammy-winning husband, Seal, and her father. Henry Guenther Ademola Dashtu Samuel was born Monday in Los Angeles, the couple announced Wednesday on Klum's German-language Web site.
· Delta to file for bankruptcy today. Delta Air Lines is expected to seek bankruptcy protection on Wednesday, a source familiar with the situation said, as rival Northwest Airlines Corp. considers doing the same.
· Update: Add Northwest to the list. Delta and Northwest Airlines, the third- and fourth-largest air carriers, both declared bankruptcy on Wednesday as the industry's struggle with soaring oil prices and low-cost competition came to a dramatic head.
· Emmys laud Brokaw, Rather, Jennings. The end of an era in television news will be commemorated during Sunday's Primetime Emmy Awards telecast with a lengthy segment that will pay tribute to the careers of long-serving news anchors Tom Brokaw, Dan Rather and the late Peter Jennings.
· Paris Hilton Hacker Gets 11 Months in Jail. A Massachusetts teenager who reportedly hacked into Paris Hilton's cell phone account has been sentenced to 11 months in a juvenile facility. Celebrity phone numbers stored in Hilton's cell phone were posted online when her account was hacked earlier this year. A Washington Post report on Wednesday identified Hilton as a victim of the 17-year-old Massachusetts boy.
· Federal Judge Declares Pledge Of Allegiance Unconstitutional. A federal judge in San Francisco ruled Wednesday it is unconstitutional for public school children to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton ruled that the pledge's reference to one nation "under God" violates school children's right to be "free from a coercive requirement to affirm God."
· Handyman Testifies in Robert Blake Case. Robert Blake's slain wife feared someone wanted to kill her, the actor's handyman testified in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the woman's family. "She mentioned someone in New Jersey that threatened to kill her," Earle Caldwell testified Tuesday, adding that he also provided security for Bonny Lee Bakley.
· Trump Delivers Lecture to Online Students. For Donald Trump, making money seems to come easily. More than 2,000 people paid $249 each to read the real estate mogul's advice when he delivered his first online lecture on dealmaking Tuesday night on his Trump University Web site.
· Relief workers victims of job mix-up. What was envisioned as a mission of mercy to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina ended in anger and disillusionment for two Lawrence residents. Instead of handing out food and water to victims in New Orleans, they found themselves under the supervision of no-nonsense, “kind of scary” foremen who had them cleaning up a hurricane-ravaged Mirage casino in Biloxi, Miss. “I felt really bad about working on a casino for rich people when there are people suffering,” Kalila Dalton said.
· Russell Crowe Seeks Reduction in Charge. Russell Crowe's lawyers are working to win a reduction of the assault charge filed against him after he allegedly hurled a phone at a New York hotel staffer. The 41-year-old Oscar-winning actor was charged with felony assault, and if convicted, could lose his right to work in the United States and faces up to seven years in prison.
· Man taking driver's license test crashes car into building. Driving-test examiner Laurie Holden said she was deciding whether to give a new driver a passing grade yesterday when the road test ended with him crashing his car into the waiting room of the driver's license station, injuring two people. The driver, Osman Salah, 25, of Nashville, failed the test - but will be eligible to take it again in seven to 30 days.
· Update: Letterman's House Painter Pleads Guilty. A man who once was accused of plotting to kidnap David Letterman's young son was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison for overcharging the talk show host for painting work at his ranch. The sentence was part of a plea agreement in which prosecutors dismissed more serious charges accusing Kelly Frank of planning to abduct the boy and his nanny for ransom.
· Congressman Used National Guard to Visit Home. Amid the chaos and confusion that engulfed New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina struck, a congressman used National Guard troops to check on his property and rescue his personal belongings — even while New Orleans residents were trying to get rescued from rooftops.
· Woman fired after rescuing siblings from Mississippi. An employee was fired from her $7-an-hour job at the Family Dollar store in Spring Hill after taking time off to rescue two younger siblings from hurricane-ravaged Mississippi, she says. Kolonie Sims, 20, third-in-charge at the discount retail store, said her bosses and a district manager gave her permission to go.
· Phoenix Walks the Line As Cash in Movie. In "Walk the Line," which premiered Tuesday at the TorontoFilm Festival, Phoenix and co-star Reese Witherspoon as the love of Cash's life, June Carter, ably step into their musical roles, re-creating the singers' lively stage shows that blossomed into a long and stormy courtship.
· Gillette ups the ante, unveils 5-blade razor. Gillette Co. Wednesday unveiled its newest shaving system, a five-bladed razor called Fusion with a trimmer on the back of the cartridge aimed at the 50 percent of men who have mustaches and beards.
· Officer suspects trouble, catches man doing good. A canoeist and good Samaritan who decided to pull nearly 100 tires out of the Des Moines River last week nearly got in trouble with the law for doing it.
· I am the egg man. The world record for balancing the most number of eggs on their end at one time has been cracked in Melbourne. American Brian Spotts, who travelled from Colorado for the Guinness Book of Records attempt, began his feat at 6pm and finished 15 hours later after standing 439 eggs on end.
· 'Like a ghost,' man nearly left for dead opens his eyes. On Tuesday, 16 days after Hurricane Katrina smacked this aging community in the face, an unconscious and emaciated man identified as Edgar Hollingsworth, 74, was rescued. The man is expected to survive.
· Truck carrying quarters burns, spills load. A truck carrying tons of quarters worth $800,000 caught fire Tuesday and spilled on a highway, where workers used heavy equipment, shovels and buckets to scoop up the singed coins. "It's kind of a surprise when you pull up on a fire call at 2:30 in the morning on the interstate and there are armed guards around the fire," the police chief said.
· Eddie Munster Actor Selling First Grateful Dead Tour Bus. Eddie Munster wants to sell you The Grateful Dead's first tour bus. Actor Butch Patrick owns the 1965 Gillig bus and is willing to part with it for $200,000. The Grateful Dead used it to tour from 1967 to 1985 and referred to the bus as "Sugar Magnolia."
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
· Marshals give cabbie $10,000 tip. Cab driver Mike Wagers, credited with the tip that led to the capture of two Tennessee fugitives wanted in the killing of a corrections officer, was rewarded Tuesday with $10,000.
· Update: Louisiana nursing home operators charged in deaths. The owners of a nursing home where 34 people were found dead after Hurricane Katrina have been arrested and charged with 34 counts of negligent homicide for not evacuating those patients, the Louisiana attorney general's office said on Tuesday.
· Man Who Shouted Obscenity At Vice President Cheney Lands On e-Bay. Ben Marble has gained world-wide attention for telling Vice President Dick Cheney last week to "go f--- himself" numerous times as VP Cheney held a press conference on the streets of a destroyed neighborhood. Now the man is turning to e-Bay where he is trying to make a buck off the event.
· Mom says assigned school novel is porn. A mother of an 11th grade student in Deland filed a formal complaint Tuesday claiming a book her daughter was assigned to read by her literature teacher is pornography. The novel details "a 9-year-old girl being introduced to oral sex by her cousin who is going through puberty."
· Trump trumped in auction for his old property. This was one deal The Donald could not make. The world's most famous real estate developer bid $25 million Tuesday for the 2.5 acres of beachfront property in Atlantic City where the Trump World's Fair Casino once stood. Housing developer Bruce Toll bid $25.15 million.
· McDonald's backs phys ed program in schools. McDonald's Corp. on Monday said it is sponsoring a physical education program that will appear in one-third of U.S. public elementary schools, the chain's latest move to combat critics who blame its burgers and fries for expanding kids' waistlines.
· Heather McCartney creates row over fur. Animal activist Heather Mills McCartney was kicked out of a New York J. Crew store for wearing a flat-screen TV showing animals being skinned alive. Paul McCartney's wife was with a group from People for Ethical Treatment of Animals, which is carrying out demonstrations as the Big Apple celebrates its annual Fashion Week. The group of 15 people left the Madison Avenue J. Crew store Monday after police threatened them with arrest.
· Debra Lafave's attorney says police took inappropriate pictures. At a press conference today, Debra Lafave's attorney says the Temple Terrace police took inappropriate pictures of her sexual organs during the investigation. Her attorney says that because Florida has such a broad public records law, anyone could request the photos and post them on the internet.
· A boy and his $400 million. His name is Alex. He is 13 years old. And when he reaches 35, he stands to inherit an estate now valued at about $400 million. This L.A. golden child is the only son of Mark Hughes, the late founder of Herbalife International, a maker of nutritional supplements.
· Toll-booth loophole provides free pass. State officials last week said it appears police cannot ticket and fine motorists who don't pay tolls on New Hampshire turnpikes, thanks to an oversight that took place when E-ZPass was written into state law. This would mean that any non-camera lanes — the coin-basket-only lanes — are essentially free ride lanes.
· Woman Arrested For Claiming To Be Hurricane Evacuee. Authorities said a Georgia woman faces felony theft charges after lying about being an evacuee from New Orleans, receiving money from the American Red Cross and getting a good Samaritan to take her into her home.
· Illegal immigrant rapes 14-year-old at convenience store. A 14-year-old girl stopped at a White Hen Pantry convenience store near her school when she was allegedly raped by a store employee, while the store manager kept watch. The store employee and alleged attacker, Jose Oviedo, who is an illegal immigrant, was arrested and charged with the crime, then released on bail. Oviedo never showed for his hearing and is believed to have fled to Mexico.
· Bozo dead. In the theater world, Jerry Sando wore many hats, but none as memorable as the bald-headed wig he wore as Bozo the Clown in the late 1950s and early 60s. Mr. Sando died after a long battle with lung disease. He was 71.
· Judge Freezes 'Suge' Knight's Assets. A judge has frozen the assets of Marion "Suge" Knight in a ruling that favors an imprisoned drug dealer, who wants half of a $107 million court award to his wife, who claimed she helped start Death Row Records.
· Red Cross disallows baby sitting of evacuees' children. The Nashville Red Cross has handed down an unprecedented measure to keep the children of hurricane victims safe. A mandate had been drafted that required criminal background checks for all outside volunteers from churches or groups wanting to care for children of evacuees.
· Teacher Who Wrote Controversial Race Letter To Sue. A teacher in Orange County, Fla., who quit after a controversy over a letter that sparked heated debate about free speech and race is expected to sue two newspapers and the Orange County School Board Monday.
· 'Bumvertising' stirs debate. The idea was simple: Pay panhandlers a few dollars to let him attach a glossy, green PokerFaceBook.com ad to their own signs, and drivers scanning the beggars' rumpled, hand-lettered pleas would also notice his.
· Matt Damon is engaged. Matt Damon and his girlfriend, Luciana Barroso, are engaged. A publicist for the "Bourne Identity" actor told the magazine that after dating for two years, Damon popped the question "shortly before Labor Day."
· Patient Dies of Sedative Overdose. An elderly man at Brockton Hospital died after he was given 60 times the recommended dose of a sedative, according to a report. The pharmacist immediately realized his mistake, and telephoned a nurse to correct it, but the nurse wasn't there and the pharmacist told investigators he "forgot to follow through."
· Accused Letterman plotter sentenced. A man who once was accused of plotting to kidnap David Letterman's young son was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison for overcharging the talk show host for painting work at his ranch.
· TV Viewers Say Enough With Reality Shows. Most people say they've had about enough of the reality shows and talk shows crowding the airwaves, an AP-TV Guide poll found. They still have a big appetite for news programming - a more traditional source of reality TV - with almost three in four saying they're satisfied with the amount of news on TV or they want more. Eight in 10 said there are too many reality TV shows on the airwaves - the most to say that about any type of TV programming.
· Supermodel Heidi Klum Has Baby. German supermodel Heidi Klum has given birth to a healthy baby boy, a German tabloid reported Tuesday. The child is the first for Klum and her husband, Grammy-winning singer Seal.
· LA spends $50,000 to nab alligator. Wranglers early Tuesday nabbed a 7-foot-long alligator named “Reggie” from a city lake where he had been dumped several months ago by a former police officer and repeatedly avoided capture.
· 11 kids found locked in cages in Ohio house. Sheriff's deputies found 11 children locked in cages rigged with alarms Monday in a north Ohio house. The children, ages 1 to 14, were in cages in the walls of the home about 50 miles west of Cleveland.
Monday, September 12, 2005
· Worker Error Blamed for L.A. Blackout. Utility workers connected the wrong wires and caused a blackout across major portions of Los Angeles on Monday afternoon, trapping people in elevators and snarling traffic at intersections, authorities said.
· Greyhound asks authorities to 'muzzle it.' The Greyhound bus station in New Orleans was converted into a makeshift jail by police trying to restore law and order in a city rife with crime and lawlessness in the days after Hurricane Katrina hit. "Greyhound called us on Friday and asked us not to refer to it as Camp Greyhound any more," Pam Laborde, communications director of Louisiana's department of corrections said.
· Update: Stepdad ordered to repay supermodel daughter. The stepfather of supermodel Maggie Rizer has been ordered by a Jefferson County judge to pay her more then $3 million in restitution for funds he stole from her bank accounts.
· Dozens Found Dead at New Orleans Hospital. The bodies of more than 40 mostly elderly patients were found in a flooded-out hospital in the biggest known cluster of corpses to be discovered so far in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans.
· "Apprentice" wannabe's X-rated past. When the new season starts for "The Apprentice," there's already a pick for Donald Trump's next flunky. Alla Wartenberg, whose network bio describes her as a 31-year-old Russian who has made millions running a chain of Las Vegas spas. Left off Alla's c.v. is her work at the Palomino Club, a Sin City strip joint where the female talent works topless and bottomless. Wartenberg once hustled $40 lap dances under the pseudonym Ecstasy and took down a California businessman for a bundle before he was convicted for murder and is now sitting on death row.
· Court rules it's ok to lie about political opponent. A law that bars political candidates from deliberately making false statements about their opponents violates the First Amendment right of free speech, an appeals panel has ruled.
· Stewart: Home Confinement Tougher Than Prison. Domestic diva Martha Stewart says her home confinement was tougher than doing time in federal prison. You have to watch the clock constantly because you're only allowed out of your home for a limited period," Stewart said.
· Utah gets pass on potentially offensive monikers. Utah has seven geographic features with the name "Negro" and 58 with the name "Squaw." But other than a failed effort to change the name of Negro Bill Canyon near Moab, there have been no formal proposals to replace names given in less politically correct times.
· School-bus showdown: Mayor Nagin vs. Russert. New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin is defending his actions in connection with Hurricane Katrina, as he was grilled yesterday about why hundreds of public buses were not used to evacuate the city in advance of the devastating storm.
· Firefighter Arrested For Allegedly Attacking 'Al-Qaida-Looking' Man. Police arrested a New York City firefighter for allegedly attacking an immigrant worker and telling him he looked "like he's al-Qaida." Edward Dailey was arrested just hours after many firefighters gathered to mark the fourth anniversary of the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
· GingerPersons. The Indiana Daily Student noticed recently that ginger-flavored cookies for sale at Indiana University in Bloomington are called "ginger persons" instead of the more traditional "gingerbread men."
· Samsung Unveils New 16 Gigabit Flash Memory Chip. Samsung Electronics Co. on Monday unveiled a new flash memory chip it says will double storage capacity on portable music players and other mobile devices. Memory cards containing multiple 16-gigabit NAND chips mean "you will be able to take your entire music and personal video libraries with you."
· Shirley Temple Getting Lifetime Award. Shirley Temple Black, 77, who enchanted generations as the curly haired moppet singing "The Good Ship Lollipop" in the 1934 movie "Bright Eyes," will be honored by the Screen Actors Guild with its prestigious Life Achievement Award. Black has also been U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Ghana and U.S. Ambassador to the Czech and Slovak Federal Republic.
· Woman's act of honesty inspires more kindness. Canesha Blackman didn't even think to open the zippered bag she found outside a city building one day last month. The 24-year-old homeless woman just went back inside and turned it in, then returned to the task of scraping up enough change to take the bus to her job at a Checkers restaurant. It turned out the bag belonged to a Polk County sheriff's detective and held $800 in cash. Since then, more than $10,000 has been donated to her through the sheriff's office. Others gave gift cards so she can buy clothes for her kids.
· Update: Home association board members resign over ban of Katrina victims. Two home association board members in Ocala are resigning because rules keep residents in their subdivision from temporarily housing Katrina evacuees.
· Woman gets pregnant after rollercoaster ride. Nayade Elbing, 28, and her husband had been trying to have children for several years and had consulted doctors in the hope of scientific help in their quest. But according to their doctor, Thomas Gent, it was G-force, rather than hitting the G-spot, that made the difference.
· City wastes $15,000 on $2.50 shoplifting case. The theft of elastic hair ties worth $2.45 from a grocery store has a small town snarled in a nearly three-year legal battle that has cost it nearly $15,000.
· Florida emergency planners criticize states on response. Florida emergency planners criticized and even rebuked their counterparts - or what passes for emergency planners - in those states for their handling of Hurricane Katrina. Gov. Jeb Bush, the head of Florida AHCA and the head of Florida wildlife (which is responsible for all search and rescue) all said they made offers of aid to Mississippi and Louisiana the day before Katrina hit but were rebuffed. After the storm, they said they've had to not only help provide people to those states but also have had to develop search and rescue plans for them. "They were completely unprepared - as bad off as we were before Andrew," one Florida official said.
· Al-Zarqawi: Katrina an answer to prayers. An Islamist Web site on Sunday posted a recording from al Qaeda's leader in Iraq saying Hurricane Katrina was an answer to the prayers of Iraqis and Afghans who have suffered under U.S. occupation.
Sunday, September 11, 2005
· Scientology reaches out and touches a nerve. Look where you might bump into the teachings of the Church of Scientology and its creator these days. If you attended a fashion show that raised money for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Clearwater, you may have found L. Ron Hubbard's "Way to Happiness" booklet in your goodie bag. The Scientology booklets bore the insignia of the Boys & Girls Clubs on the cover and directions on the back cover indicating that additional copies could be obtained at the Boys & Girls Clubs.
· Cyclist charged with manslaughter after hitting, killing pedestrian. A bicyclist has been charged with manslaughter after he struck and killed a pedestrian, police said. Jean Calder, 71, died at Good Samaritan Hospital after she was struck Friday night as she crossed a street at an unmarked crosswalk, Corvallis, OR police said.
· Flight 93 memorial decried as Islam symbol. There's a growing outcry that one element of the newly chosen Flight 93 National Memorial represents Islam and is a slap in the face to the passengers and crew members who died on the hijacked plane four years ago. To many, the shape represents Islam, and the symbol is used on the flags of several Muslim countries, including Turkey, Pakistan and Uzbekistan.
· FBI: Hurricane relief Internet scams proliferate. Internet sites purporting to be charities related to Hurricane Katrina have been popping up faster than the FBI can look at them, and many appear to be fraudulent, the head of the FBI's cyber division said.
· Radio Station for Katrina Evacuees Stalled at Astrodome. The small, makeshift 30-watt radio station was to be broadcast under the name KAMP, or Katrina Aftermath Media Project, and was intended to provide vital information regarding schools, housing and finances to the thousands of evacuees now living in the Houston sports arena. The group was told by the Joint Operations Center at the Astrodome that officials could not provide the radio station with electricity. Organizers say they offered to use battery power for KAMP, but were still denied.
· Moments Of Silence To Mark 9/11 Anniversary. As dawn breaks on the East Coast Sunday, Americans are pausing to mark the fourth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania.
· Lavish tastes of card-carrying lowlifes. Profiteering ghouls have been using debit cards distributed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina - intended to buy essentials for evacuated families - in luxury-goods stores as far away as Atlanta. "We've seen three of the cards," said a senior employee of the Louis Vuitton store at the Lenox Square Mall in affluent Buckhead, who asked not to be named. "Two I'm certain have purchased," each buying a signature monogrammed Louis Vuitton handbag in the $800 range.
· Jackson Juror Files Lawsuit. A juror in the Michael Jackson case who said last month that he believed the pop star was guilty of molesting his 15-year-old accuser has filed a lawsuit to get out of a book publishing contract. A publishing executive was quoted as saying the title of one of the books about the Jackson trial will be: "Guilty as Sin, Free as a Bird."
· Videotaped massage chafes woman. Washington, D.C., management consultant Michelle DeYoung used to get massages when traveling through Denver. She would disrobe, lay facedown on a table, and let the therapist slowly loosen her tight muscles. She says she had no idea she was being videotaped. "I was horrified," said DeYoung, 45.
· American al Qaeda Member Warns of Attacks. In an apparent Sept. 11 communiqué broadcast on ABC News, an al Qaeda operative threatens new attacks against cities in the U.S. and Australia. "Yesterday, London and Madrid. Tomorrow, Los Angeles and Melbourne, God willing. At this time, don't count on us demonstrating restraint or compassion," the tape warns. "We are Muslims. We love peace, but peace on our terms, peace as laid down by Islam, not the so-called peace of occupiers and dictators."
Saturday, September 10, 2005
· Pitcher goes on tirade; injures finger. Minnesota pitcher Kyle Lohse damaged the door to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire's office with a baseball bat in a tirade for being pulled from a game against Texas after two innings. Lohse may have injured a finger in the process, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
· Porn Star Promises To Behave Or Face Jail. An adult film star who once ran for California governor agreed to behave for a year or face jail after allegedly touching herself inappropriately during a dance routine at a strip club.
· Student Sees Dead Father at School Presentation. A 12-year-old student saw her father's remains in a gruesome photograph of a drunken-driving crash during a police presentation on the dangers of mixing alcohol and operating a motor vehicle. The girl's mother said her daughter was traumatized by the experience. "Why are we showing 12-year-olds mutilated dead bodies when they can't even drive a car for four more years?"
· Prince Says He Was 'Set Up' by Woman. Monaco's Prince Albert II said he was "set up" for fatherhood by a former flight attendant who says she had his child. "It was a very difficult moment for me," the Times quoted Albert as saying, adding that he is still "coming to terms" with the unintended fatherhood.
· Church of Scientology sets up tent. The Church of Scientology has set up a tent in New Orleans for 300 to 400 "volunteer ministers" who are giving counseling, massages and anything else the officers might need. Actress Kirstie Alley paid a visit on Friday to the command center to talk to the officers and military personnel.
· Soup kitchens exploited by people too lazy to cook. For decades they have been an invaluable source of nutrition for London's homeless, but now mobile soup kitchens are attracting new customers - those who are not poor and needy but just too lazy to cook. More than 80 percent of the people using the soup kitchens, which also hand out food such as sandwiches, are in fact not homeless.
· Celine hits a low note. Celine Dion is not a bad person, but she apparently believes that as a celebrity she has an automatic right, even a duty, to express her feelings about a public tragedy. I feel something and I am famous; thus it has to be important. Just as a movie star's baby is treated as if it's the fist baby ever born. And nobody does an Oprah moment better than, well Oprah. Hardly had Celine taken a breath than Oprah Winfrey, Sean Penn and their friends were posing for the cameras as they hugged people in New Orleans. No mention of the fact that the assembled bodyguards and television crews actually disrupted the rescue operation.
· 4,500 registered sex offenders among evacuees. Although nearly 4,500 registered sex offenders lived in the 14 parishes hit by Hurricane Katrina, the Department of Corrections is most worried about fewer than 300 those who ordinarily check in at parole offices closed by the storm.
· Kanye West has vocabulary advice for white people. Rapper Kanye West is advising his white counterparts that they can only use certain slang terms when they're out of style for black people. "Actually, I do not think that (white people) are allowed to use slang until it is at least a year old. If you say a slang word too early, it's like you're trying to be black."
· Blacks fault lack of local leadership. Some in the black community are beginning to question what happened to the black leadership during the Hurricane Katrina disaster, especially in the city of New Orleans. While a few black leaders, including the Rev. Jesse Jackson, the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Congressional Black Caucus, have singled out the president for blame, others say Mayor C. Ray Nagin, who is black, is responsible for the dismal response to the flooding that stranded thousands in the city's poorest sections.
· Yahoo Ordered to Share Reporter's E-Mail. Yahoo had to comply with a demand by Chinese authorities to provide information about a personal e-mail of a journalist who was later convicted under state secrecy laws and sentenced to 10 years in prison, the company's co-founder Jerry Yang said Saturday.
· $1,100 Toenail Clipping Bill Leads To Lawsuit. A $1,100 hospital bill for clipping a toenail and running tests has sparked a class-action lawsuit. The lawsuit is against Seattle's Virginia Mason Medical Center.
· Tara Reid's luxury hotel room - for her shoes. Tara Reid stunned staff at London's fashionable Baglioni hotel by asking for a luxury room - just for her shoes. A source is quoted by Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper as saying: "She booked herself into one of our most expensive suites at around $4,000 a night but then requested a second room too in which to keep all her shoes.
· Company sends a message to junk fax offenders. A little-used provision in the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 requires senders to pay recipients $500 for each unsolicited fax and triple if the fax was sent willfully. Courts have said simply pushing the button to send the fax makes it willful.
· Evacuees Asked To Leave Fla. Hotel. A Hampton Inn hotel in Jacksonville, Fla., allegedly demanded evacuees of Hurricane Katrina leave their rooms, apparently fearing the Red Cross would not honor vouchers reimbursing their stay.
Friday, September 9, 2005
· Couple Pleads Guilty To Putting Finger In Chili. A Nevada couple has pleaded guilty in a San Jose courtroom to all charges related to planting a finger in a bowl of Wendy's chili. Anna Ayala and her husband, Jaime Placencia, entered the pleas Friday. They both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to file a false claim and attempted grand theft, in addition to other charges.
· FEMA Scraps $2,000 Debit Card Program. The federal government's relief agency said Friday it will discontinue its program to distribute debit cards worth up to $2,000 to hurricane victims, two days after hastily announcing the plan to provide quick relief.
· Evacuee Charged With Raping Mentally Challenged Girl. Glenn Dorsett is accused of raping a 13-year-old mentally challenged girl from New Orleans at the Assembly of God church campground on Hwy. 7 that has been set up for hurricane evacuees.
· Ice Cream Man Shows Kids Porn; Asks Girls To Kiss. An ice cream truck driver in Mount Clemens, Mich., is accused of showing children nude photos of himself and offering free ice cream to two young girls if they kiss each other.
· FEMA Chief Relieved of Katrina Duties. Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Brown is being removed from his role in managing the Bush administration's Hurricane Katrina relief efforts and is returning to Washington.
· Old-Style Pumps Can't Register $3 Per Gallon. Gas prices are getting too high for the old pumps to handle. It was absurd to think that gasoline prices would reach $3 a gallon when some of the old-style gas pumps were built. Some still in use are unable to register prices beyond $2.99 per gallon.
· Prostitute Gets 30 Years for Burning House. A prostitute who torched a civic leader's home because she was angry that newcomers to the neighborhood were hurting her business was sentenced to 30 years in prison.
· Canadian auto parts king provides help to hundreds of evacuees. Canadian industrialist Frank Stronach was in Florida Thursday, greeting the 270 Hurricane Katrina survivors he is now housing. The chairman of auto parts giant Magna International mingled with the evacuees, who gave him a standing ovation when he announced he would help the several hundred evacuees through the next five years. Stronach is also purchasing 1,000 acres to build a Louisiana town for those devastated by hurricane Katrina.
· Katrina Benefit Telethon Won't Be Censored. The producer of Friday's one-hour telethon to benefit Hurricane Katrina victims said no special precautions will be taken to edit out political statements - even though rapper Kanye West is on the bill.
· Illegal Immigrants Afraid to Get Storm Aid. For more than 20,000 illegal immigrants, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina has meant not only living without a home, money or belongings, but also steering clear of the government officials who have flocked to the area, for fear of deportation.
· Jennings service to be held Sept. 20. A memorial service for ABC News anchorman Peter Jennings, who died of lung cancer on August 7, will be held on September 20 at New York's Carnegie Hall. The family held a private service, but announced the plans for the memorial to "celebrate the life" of Jennings.
· Fox Holds Family Guy With Hurricane References. Fox has substituted one original episode of Family Guy for another on Sunday, the debut of its new fall season lineup that night, because the episode scheduled to air contained a “couple” references to a hurricane.
· Louisiana real estate booms after Katrina. Hurricane Katrina has created a real estate boom in Louisiana's usually sedate state capital, now bursting at the seams as rescue workers arrive and evacuees scramble to get on with their lives.
· Two Men Electrocuted While Trying To Steal Power Line. One man was killed and another hospitalized after being electrocuted early Friday morning while trying to steal a power cable, police said. The pair thought the line was a low-voltage wire, but it was actually a high-voltage line carrying roughly 12,500 volts.
· Bic sells 100 billionth pen. It started as an answer to leaky pens carried by American soldiers during World War II, was perfected and made popular by an Italian-born baron and has written its way into history as the world's biggest-selling pen.
· ABC to Offer Primetime Shows in Spanish. ABC viewers will get "Lost" in translation as part of a plan to make all the network's primetime entertainment available in Spanish starting this season. The move is an acknowledgment of the expanding U.S. Hispanic population and its potential as a source of viewers.
· Police Find Pot in 200-Pound Stolen Safe. A man who reported a safe stolen from his home a month ago may now face charges after police found the safe - with almost a pound of marijuana inside. Deputies recovered the safe after receiving a tip. The safe was still locked, and when deputies called the owner to open it, they discovered the items he described, along with the marijuana.
· Subdivision rules keep families from housing Katrina evacuees. Subdivision rules are keeping residents from temporarily housing Hurricane Katrina evacuees, and some angry homeowners say it might make them move.
» Woman Takes In 53 Hurricane Victims. A woman in Texas living in a 1,700-square foot home is housing 53 hurricane Katrina victims who lost everything in the storm. Barbara Hazy, who moved to Houston from New Orleans, said the large group requires patience in her two-bath, three bedroom home.
Word of The Day by WordThink
Disingenuous [dis·in·gen·u·ous] adj. Not straightforward or candid; insincere or calculating. 'It was disingenuous of her to claim she had no financial interest in the legal case.'
· N.C. couple who faked crop damage jailed. A couple who faked weather damage to their crops by having workers throw ice cubes onto a tomato field and then beat the plants were ordered to repay more than $9 million they received fraudulently.
· Bodies removed from nursing home in New Orleans. Private contractors in decontamination suits removed some 30 bodies from the St. Ritas nursing home, as dumbstruck parish and state officials considered charges against the home's operators.
· "War on terror" saves few lives. The U.S. "war on terror" is saving fewer lives than just spending the money on disease prevention and research, and has probably caused deaths by taking money away from basic services, an expert said on Thursday.
· Sandy Berger fined $50,000 for taking documents. Former National Security Adviser Sandy Berger was sentenced Thursday to community service and probation and fined $50,000 for illegally removing highly classified documents from the National Archives and intentionally destroying some of them.
Thursday, September 8, 2005
· Plea Deal For Woman Who Had Sex With 8-Year-Old. A woman accused of sexually abusing an 8-year-old boy whom police say she considered her boyfriend has reached a plea agreement, the woman's attorney said Wednesday. Tammy Imre, 30, "should be out of jail in a relatively short period of time," her attorney said. "She'll still be a young woman."
· Paris Hilton happy with fiance, but first she needs new $2 million ring. Paris Hilton is happy with tycoon fiance Paris Latsis, settling down to a quieter life and thinking about having a baby - but first she wants a new $2 million engagement ring. Hilton was not happy with the engagement ring Latsis gave her, so a new, 24-carat emerald-cut diamond ring estimated to cost $2 million has been ordered, Vanity Fair said.
· Hurricane refugee arrested in Atlanta for panhandling. A man who fled Louisiana with his family to escape Hurricane Katrina was arrested for asking motorists for money in this city where panhandling has been one of the most contentious issues lately.
· Survivor Winner Indicted For Fraud. A federal grand jury indicted Richard Hatch, the winner of the first CBS Survivor reality television series in 2000, on charges of tax evasion and fraudulently using charitable donations for personal expenses Thursday. A 10-count indictment alleges that Hatch failed to report more than $1 million in income from Survivor and about $391,000 in income from six other sources.
· Minnesota uses 9/11 disaster loans for businesses. An Associated Press review of more than 300 approved recipients in Minnesota found a bowling alley in Brainerd received $1.3 million; a hobby store in Blaine, $800,000; a packaging and labeling service in Maple Grove, $1.3 million; a bar in Mahtomedi, $325,000; and many other examples. The loans range in size from as little as $5,000 to as much as $1.7 million.
· Forensic TV shows help criminals escape police? Television shows like CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, depicting forensic scientists at work, are helping criminals avoid identification. Car thieves may leave multiple cigarette butts from bins in stolen cars to muddy the forensic trail. "Suddenly the police have 20 potential people in the car," Dr. Rutty said.
· Congressman says don't trust Louisiana with aid. U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., asked House Speaker Dennis Hastert not to send federal disaster aid to officials in Louisiana, calling state and local government there incompetent and corrupt.
· Will Moore turn Katrina into film? The controversial filmmaker is “seriously considering” turning the devastating storm and its aftermath into a documentary. “It has all the elements that made ‘Fahrenheit 911’ such a powerful film,” says a source. “The political outrage, the human suffering, and the incredible footage.”
· Exxon's $10 billion fill-up: Cashing in on crunch. Oil companies came under new fire yesterday when it emerged that ExxonMobil's profits are likely to soar above $10 billion this quarter on the back of the fuel crisis. That's $110 million a day, and more net income than any company has ever made in a quarter.
· Muslim Anti-Terrorism Ads To Coincide With 9/11 Anniversary. A Muslim civil liberties group plans to denounce terrorism in a paid television commercial airing in the Tampa market this weekend to coincide with the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The 30-second spot, produced by the nonprofit Council on American-Islamic Relations, features two American Muslims, a man and a woman, denouncing violence in the name of Islam and vowing to "not to allow our faith to be hijacked by criminals."
· Baby in stroller stabbed on New York street. A knife-wielding man stabbed a 10-month-old baby in her stroller, critically injuring her, police said. Isabelle Avins was rushed to a hospital where she underwent surgery Wednesday night. She was listed in critical but stable condition.
· Canadians beat U.S. Army to New Orleans. A Canadian search-and-rescue team reached a flooded New Orleans suburb to help save trapped residents five days before the U.S. military, a Louisiana state senator said on Wednesday.
· AIDS inmate gets 13 years in biting-spitting rampage. An inmate with AIDS who tried to infect cops and a mental health worker with the virus by biting and spitting was sentenced yesterday to 13 years in prison for attempted murder.
· Son of astronaut pleads guilty to child porn charge. The son of astronaut Walter Schirra has pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in a federal sex tourism case, according to court records.
· Rapper Jay-Z wants Katrina fund exclusively for blacks. Rap mogul Jay-Z is standing behind Kanye West, who went off-script to declare that “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” during his appearance in last Friday’s telethon for Hurricane Katrina victims. Jay-Z said he wants to speak with Sean “Pee Diddy” Combs about starting a fund exclusively to help blacks in times of crisis.
» Angry Kanye West is a raging success. It might not thrill President Bush, but one of his most vocal new foes, Kanye West, has racked up the second-biggest opening-sales week of the year. "Late Registration," the sophomore CD from the opinion-filled rapper, opened at No. 1 on Billboard's latest Top 200 Album chart, with bang-up sales of 862,582 copies.
· Group's TV ad uses storm's aftermath to target Roberts. The televised images of poverty-stricken evacuees from Hurricane Katrina are part of a provocative, last-minute effort by liberal interest group MoveOn.org to divert federal Judge John Roberts' path to confirmation as chief justice.
· Rolling Stone to Publish Thompson Note. What may be Hunter Thompson's final note to be published: "No More Games. No More Bombs. No More Walking. No More Fun. No More Swimming. 67. That is 17 years past 50. 17 more than I needed or wanted. Boring. I am always bitchy. No Fun - for anybody. 67. You are getting Greedy. Act your old age. Relax - This won't hurt."
· Crow, Dixie Chicks among Katrina benefit acts. Sheryl Crow, the Dixie Chicks, Randy Newman, Neil Young, Rod Stewart, Alicia Keys and Paul Simon will perform during Friday's Hurricane Katrina benefit organized by the major broadcast networks.
· Ford recalls 3.8 million pickups, SUVs. Ford Motor Co. on Wednesday recalled 3.8 million pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles for a cruise control switch suspected of causing engine fires. It is the fifth largest auto industry recall in U.S. history.
· Pair vows to out anti-gay wed signers. A pair of gay activists are raising the stakes in the fight over same-sex marriage, vowing to post on the Internet the name and address of anyone who signs a petition to ban gay marriage and civil unions in Massachusetts.
· N.J. teacher charged in sex crimes involving 3 students. Authorities arrested a physical education teacher at her home Wednesday, charging her with sexual crimes involving three male students. Traci J. Tapp, 28, who was suspended with pay in March 2005 after a mother of one of the students brought the allegations to the attention of school officials.
· Army's engineers spent millions on Louisiana projects labeled as pork. Before Hurricane Katrina breached a levee on the New Orleans Industrial Canal, the Army Corps of Engineers had launched a $748 million construction project at that very location. But the project had nothing to do with flood control. The Corps was building a massive new lock for the canal, an effort to accommodate steadily increasing barge traffic. Except barge traffic on the canal has been steadily decreasing.
· Who's to Blame for Delayed Response to Katrina? In New Orleans, those in peril and those in power have pointed the finger squarely at the federal government for the delayed relief effort. But experts say when natural disasters strike, it is the primary responsibility of state and local governments — not the federal government — to respond. Shortly before Katrina hit, Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco sent President Bush a request asking for shelter and provisions, but didn't specifically ask for help with evacuations. One aide to the governor told ABC News today Blanco thought city officials were taking care of the evacuation.
· Pensacola pilots ‘counseled’ for storm rescues. Two Navy helicopter pilots were reminded of the importance of supply missions after delivering their cargo and then rescuing 110 hurricane victims in New Orleans instead of immediately returning to base, the military said Wednesday.
· PayPal Freezes Out Katrina Aid. On the morning of Sept. 3, Rich Kyanka set up a PayPal account to raise money for Hurricane Katrina victims, with the intention of donating the money to the American Red Cross. But just as Kyanka prepared to send more than $27,000 in contributions to the Red Cross, the account was locked by PayPal, which launched an investigation into possible fraud.
· Honda Develops First Airbag For Motorcycles. Honda said it has developed the first airbag intended for production motorcycles. It plans to offer the feature on the new Gold Wing model due for sale in the United States beginning next spring. Honda said the airbag, which inflates after sensors detect an oncoming crash, is aimed at reducing injuries in a head-on collision.
· Rancic Says He'll Stop Working for Trump. "The Apprentice" winner Bill Rancic, entrusted by the reality TV show's creator, Donald Trump, to develop a skyscraper, says he'll stop working for him next year and start his own business.
· Some Steal Top Notch Education. California's Silicon Valley is world renowned for the multitude of hi-tech companies headquartered there, like Apple Computer and Hewlett-Packard. But in the San Francisco Bay area, it's the schools that get the attention of local parents, and even drive some to break the law.
Wednesday, September 7, 2005
· Governator to veto same-sex marriage bill. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, under growing pressure from his conservative supporters, promised Wednesday to veto the gay marriage bill passed less than a day earlier by the Democrat-led Legislature.
· Murder Inc. Gunning for 50 Cent? If you ask the government, Murder Inc. apparently took its name a bit too seriously. Federal agents and prosecutors are probing whether a notorious Queens drug lord and employees of the "world's most dangerous music company" conspired to assassinate rival rapper 50 Cent and may have been behind the 2002 slaying of Run-D.M.C. deejay Jam Master Jay.
· Jury: Rod Stewart must pay $2 million. A federal jury decided Wednesday that Rod Stewart should pay a Las Vegas casino $2 million plus interest for a canceled show in December 2000. The seven-member jury found unanimously that Stewart should not have kept an advance he was paid by the Rio Hotel Casino.
· From Kennels to Medicine, Military Getting Creative to Persuade Residents to Leave. A New Orleans man stubbornly refused to leave his home, insisting he must stay with the only things he had left in the world - his two dogs and eight young puppies. And three friends wouldn't go anywhere without him. So a Navy crew built them a kennel.
· $40,000 deal ends motel's bias case. Crystal Parker just wanted to cool off in the motel swimming pool with her uncle and some kids. But she said the motel's owner had another idea: "no coloreds." The motel owner has agreed to pay the state $40,000 to resolve three separate complaints of racial discrimination, and can never again operate a place of lodging in the United States.
· Potter Novels Available for Downloads. Break out your iPods: Harry Potter is going digital. J.K. Rowling, once publishing's greatest holdout against the computer age, has made all six Potter novels available for audio downloads.
· Mrs. Bush Comment 'Personal.' Barbara Bush was making "a personal observation" when she said poor people at a relocation center in Houston were faring better than before Hurricane Katrina struck, President Bush's spokesman said Wednesday.
· An explanation from the editor of Tabloid Column. As many of you know, we have been trying the 'discussion' forum out for a few months, and I'm pleased to say that virtually all of our posters have provided intelligent and considerate comments to the stories. Unfortunately, there are a very few people that have abused it. [More in the Discussion link below]...
· Feds To Hand Out $2,000 Debit Cards To Evacuees. There's word that the federal government will start handing out debit cards to some Hurricane Katrina victims, as early as today. A spokeswoman for Texas Gov. Rick Perry said the cards, worth $2,000 each, are going to be given to adult evacuees at the Astrodome.
· Bank shows disregard for graves and families. People are wondering why AmSouth Bank can pay itself administrative fees on a 1981 trust fund totaling $268,228, but doesn't have enough money to cover the cost of regularly mowing a small, 3-acre cemetery.
· Poll: 38% of Americans say 'nobody' to blame in disaster. In a new CNN poll, when asked who is to blame for the problems in New Orleans following the hurricane - 13 percent said Bush, 18 percent said federal agencies, 25 percent blamed state or local officials and 38 percent said no one is to blame. And 63 percent said they do not believe anyone at federal agencies responsible for handling emergencies should be fired as a result.
· Don't blame only feds. Journalist Michael Goodwin suggests taking a break from the joy of Bush bashing to reveal the dirty little secret of New Orleans: Its local government deserves an F for its planning and response to Katrina. And one other thing: The New Orleans police force would be a joke if it weren't a disgrace. New Orleans police chief has responded by offering all officers paid vacations to Las Vegas and Atlanta. Yes, that's right - he is pulling all cops off the street, even while bodies lie in the open.
· For people contributing to the victims of Katrina. Last week we introduced a victims fund (The McCormick Tribune Foundation) that doubled your contribution. Now, Barry Manilow is doing a 3-for-1 contribution, where for every $1 you donate, his fund will contribute $3 to the Red Cross Hurricane Katrina victims fund - and The Manilow Fund contributes 100% of every dollar raised.
· Heinz Calls on Venezuela to Give Back Seized Ketchup Plant. H.J. Heinz Co., the world's largest ketchup maker, called on Venezuelan authorities to give back a plant seized yesterday by a state governor. Heinz bought the ketchup plant in eastern Monagas state in 1996.
· Kanye West Sticking to Music in NFL Show. In his first public appearance since verbally lashing President Bush, rapper Kanye West said he would stick to entertainment at this week's NFL opening kickoff concert.
· Update: Superdome may not have to be leveled. The Louisiana Superdome was so heavily damaged during Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath that it likely will have to be torn down, CNN.com reported, citing a a spokesperson for Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco. In an update to the story, the operator of the Louisiana Superdome said Wednesday that talk of tearing down the stadium is “purely conjecture and speculation.”
· Right city, wrong state. Add geography to the growing list of FEMA fumbles. A South Carolina health official said his colleagues scrambled Tuesday when FEMA gave only a half-hour notice to prepare for the arrival of a plane carrying as many as 180 evacuees to Charleston. But the plane, instead, landed in Charleston, West Virginia, 400 miles away.
· Calif. Assembly passes bill to allow gay marriage. A bill that would allow same-sex couples to marry won final passage on Tuesday in the California Assembly, marking the first time a state legislature in the United States has endorsed gay marriage.
· Mississippi says 'we need some help too!' The people who have chosen to stay or are stuck in demolished communities along the Mississippi coast scavenge for basics each day, as convoys of soldiers and supplies pass them by, headed for the nearly empty city of New Orleans.
· Dig truckers wheel in to methadone clinic. Big Dig workers are lining up at the crack of dawn to get heroin-weaning methadone from a local Boston clinic – including some who operate heavy equipment. The issue raises more questions about the $14.6 billion project, which is the focus of federal and state probes into cost overruns and shoddy workmanship that has allegedly led to leaky tunnels.
· Two versions of NY Times article paint different pictures of Houston. You've likely heard the saying that there are two sides to every story. But there's an interesting twist to that adage. A world-renowned newspaper apparently found two stories are better than one when it comes to Houston's efforts in the wake of Katrina. In one, the article seems relatively even handed. But in the other, some say it is overly critical, ill-timed, and in poor taste.
Tuesday, September 6, 2005
· Bob Denver of 'Gilligan' Fame Dies at 70. Bob Denver, whose portrayal of goofy first mate Gilligan on the 1960s television show "Gilligan's Island," made him an iconic figure to generations of TV viewers, has died, his agent confirmed Tuesday.
· Customs officials send seized goods to victims. The Yves St. Laurent and Tommy Hilfiger labels may be phony, but the thousands of Hurricane Katrina victims getting knockoff items seized by federal customs officials probably don't mind.
· Use of the Word 'Refugee' Stirs Debate. What do you call people who have been driven from their homes with only the clothes on their backs, unsure if they will ever be able to return, and forced to build a new life in a strange place? While news organizations struggle for the right word, Jesse Jackson says the use of the word refugee is racist.
· On Bourbon Street, the junkies are jumpy. Heroin, cocaine and crack are no longer on the menu on Bourbon Street, and junkies strung out since Katrina devastated New Orleans are feeling the pinch. A woman drinking whiskey and coke outside Johnny White's said of a drug dealer in the area, "He's probably got $8,000 in his back pocket right now. Business has been brisk here."
· Amid Katrina chaos, officer commits suicide. Life wasn't supposed to end this way for Sgt. Paul Accardo: alone in chaos. He wrote a note telling anyone who found him to contact a fellow officer. He was precise, and thoughtful, to the end. Then he stuck a gun into his mouth and killed himself.
· Jackson Accuser's Mom Pleads Innocent. What a difference three months make. The mother of Michael Jackson's teenage accuser was in a Los Angeles courtroom Tuesday, where she entered not-guilty pleas to charges of welfare fraud - allegations that became a key theme of the Jackson trial.
· Note in bottle: Stranded, please send beer. Rescuers found a message in a wine bottle drifting in floodwaters along Canal Street: "To whom it may concern: Please send with immediately, (one) ice cold chest of Coors Light. I'm out at this time. Down to wine. Some shrimp and oysters would also be appreciated. Thank you," said the note, which was signed and gave an address.
· Cell Phone At Burglary Scene Leads To Arrest. A cell phone found at the scene of a burglary in Ann Arbor, Mich. led to an arrest early Saturday. Officers found a cell phone and used it to set up a meeting at a restaurant on South University Avenue and arrested two men, ages 17 and 25, after they showed up and said the phone belonged to them.
· Teacher too sexy for religion classes. Was it her looks or lifestyle that led the Roman Catholic Church to cause a minor media frenzy by firing an Italian religion teacher this year? Caterina Bonci said Church authorities decided she was just too attractive and dressed too sexy to teach religion after 14 years on the job, with teasing newspaper headlines: “Teacher in mini-skirt fired by diocese.”
· Bush to seek $40 billion in disaster aid. President Bush intends to seek $40 billion to cover the next phase of Hurricane Katrina relief and recovery operations, a congressional official said Tuesday. The total cost to the federal government could top $150 billion.
· Man held in sex offender killings, says he found victims on web. A man turned himself in to authorities in the killing of two convicted child rapists, saying he picked the victims from a sheriff's Web site, police said. Michael Anthony Mullen, 36, called 911 on Monday to claim responsibility for the killings. Both victims were classified as Level III sex offenders, considered the type most likely to reoffend.
· Ben & Jerry's CFO in trouble. A former chief financial officer at Ben & Jerry's Homemade has agreed to plead guilty to a federal wire fraud charge for embezzling more than $300,000 from the company, according to federal prosecutors.
· Armstrong and Crow Getting Hitched. Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong and rock star Sheryl Crow are engaged. The cyclist announced the engagement in a statement Monday. He said he asked Crow on Wednesday while they were in Sun Valley, Idaho.
· Murder and rape - fact or fiction? There were two babies who had their throats slit. The seven-year-old girl who was raped and murdered in the Superdome. And the corpses laid out amid the excrement in the convention centre. n a week filled with dreadful scenes of desperation and anger from New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina some stories stood out. But as time goes on many remain unsubstantiated and may yet prove to be apocryphal. New Orleans police have been unable to confirm the tale of the raped child, or indeed any of the reports of rapes, in the Superdome and convention center.
· Christina's wedding payday. If you're planning your wedding and you've got a few million to spare, why not hire Christina Aguilera to perform some of her greatest hits for your guests? That's what Russian billionaire businessman Andrey Melnichenko did - offering the Dirrty singer a whopping $2.2 million to sing just two songs at his wedding bash in the South of France.
· 'Transporter' Tops Labor Day Box Office. Jason Statham delivered a bigger box-office package this time, with his action sequel "Transporter 2" taking in $20.25 million to debut as the top weekend movie.
· Sharing the pain — and photo-ops. Cries of "Oprah! Oprah! Oprah!" signalled the arrival of the television goddess as she stepped out of her SUV. She and her entourage were the only ones allowed to drive right up to the doors of the Astrodome. "Forget the photo-ops and help me look for my kids," a man yelled as New York Democratic Senator Hillary Clinton made her way down the ramp to the floor of the Astrodome, home to some 17,500 refugees. "I need your help to find my family."
· Schools adopt booing ban. Fans: get out there and show your colors, but keep it clean. That's the gist of several new rules that have been adopted by the Montana High School Association, including a rule that requires war-painted fans to wear their shirts during sporting events and another that bans booing.
· Police Blow Up Cannonball, Owner Objects. Yale Metzger said he called police last week to have them examine the cannonball he found in Cordova. Instead, he said, the bomb squad showed up at his home last week with a remote-controlled robot, hauled away the cast iron ball and blew it up. The police are calling Metzger "an idiot" for carrying the incendiary device around in his truck, then bringing it into downtown Anchorage, where they say it could have sent shrapnel flying for blocks had it exploded.
· Man finds fast food a better choice than selling encyclopedias. When 28-year-old Andy Santacroce picked up the newspaper in 1957 looking for a job, he had no idea his life was about to change in a big way. He had narrowed his choices down to selling encyclopedias or being a manager at a little-known restaurant chain called McDonalds.
· Red Sox Pitcher, Wife Care for Family From New Orleans. Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling and wife Shonda paid to fly a New Orleans family of nine to Boston and pledged to provide them with housing for a year.
· Dutch suspect in Holloway case leaves Aruba. A Dutch suspect in the disappearance of an Alabama teenager left Aruba to attend college Monday, while the country's leader pledged the investigation "will not cease" despite the release of the three suspects.
· 'Don't smile for passport photos.' Britons are being told not to smile for photographs when applying for new passports to avoid confusing new security scanners introduced at airports worldwide, officials said yesterday.
· Pizza firing wins online contest. A computer engineer who lost his job because he ate two pieces of pepperoni pizza has been named the winner of an offbeat Internet contest that solicited stories about outrageous firings.
· Style-conscious China city flags down bald cabbies. In a bid to spruce up the city's image, authorities in China's Nanjing are banning taxi drivers who are bald, wear their hair too long, have moustaches or wear too much make-up.
Monday, September 5, 2005
· Levee patched, pumps begin draining New Orleans. Repair crews have patched the ruptured levee along the 17th Street Canal and have begun pumping water from New Orleans, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Monday.
· British tourist calls U.S. rescue 'shambles.' A British tourist stranded for five days with his wife and seven-year-old son in a New Orleans hotel has called the US relief operation a "shambles." He said at one point a group of girls was standing on the roof of the hotel lobby and called to passing rescuers for help. "They [the authorities] said to them 'well show us what you've got' - doing signs for them to lift their t-shirts up. The girls said no, and they said 'well fine', and motored off down the road in their motorboat."
· Lewis raises $3 million for MDA, storm victims. The Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon raised more than $3 million by late Sunday night in a unique edition of the event that benefits both the Muscular Dystrophy Association and victims of Hurricane Katrina.
· Celine Dion takes swipe at Iraq war; donates $1m to Katrina victims. An emotional Celine Dion took a swipe at the U.S. policy in Iraq, breaking down in tears as she talked about the need for the Bush administration to concentrate on those suffering at home.
· Katrina medical help held up by red tape. Volunteer physicians are pouring in to care for the sick, but red tape is keeping hundreds of others from caring for Hurricane Katrina survivors while health problems rise. Among the doctors stymied from helping out are 100 surgeons and paramedics in a state-of-the-art mobile hospital, developed with millions of tax dollars for just such emergencies, marooned in rural Mississippi.
· Why gentlemen no longer prefer blondes. Modern men want brains and sophistication which are most often associated with brunettes, researchers at City University found. Their study into hair color and the intensity of attraction showed that 51 per cent of men thought brunettes were more attractive.
· New Orleans a 'ghost town' for 9 months. New Orleans will have to be abandoned for at least nine months, and many of its people will remain homeless for up to two years, the U.S. government believes. The bleak assessment will deepen the biggest crisis faced by President George Bush, who last week called the devastation of Hurricane Katrina a " temporary disruption."
· Holloway’s mother leaves Aruba. The mother of an Alabama teenager who went missing in Aruba said Sunday she is leaving Dutch Caribbean island after having “exhausted all my avenues” there following the release of all three suspects in the disappearance.
· High-tech parking meters rake in coins. In Pacific Grove, CA, parking meters don't grant those magical few minutes on someone else's dime. Each time a car pulls away from a space, the meter automatically resets to zero. Oh, and forget about rubbing the traffic officer's chalk mark off your tires, if you're in Monterey, Calif., or Chicago, you're apt to be foiled by parking officials who drive minicarts outfitted with GPS-enabled cameras that scan your license plate and know how long a car has occupied the given space.
· Sarasota officials want students subjected to breathalyzer tests. Hoping that the measure will help keep dances and athletic events under control, school officials in Sarasota County are deciding whether to breathalyzer tests on students attending those gatherings.
Sunday, September 4, 2005
· French Quarter Holdouts Create 'Tribes.' In the absence of information and outside assistance, groups of rich and poor banded together in the French Quarter, forming "tribes" and dividing up the labor. "Some people became animals," Vasilioas Tryphonas said Sunday morning as he sipped a hot beer in Johnny White's Sports Bar on Bourbon Street. "We became more civilized."
· Evacuees anguished at leaving pets behind. Valerie Bennett was evacuated from a New Orleans hospital, rescuers told her there was no room in the boat for her dogs. She pleaded. "I offered him my wedding ring and my mom's wedding ring," the 34-year-old nurse recalled Saturday.
· Halliburton hired for storm cleanup. The Navy has hired Houston-based Halliburton Co. to restore electric power, repair roofs and remove debris at three naval facilities in Mississippi damaged by Hurricane Katrina.
· Gunmen Killed By Police. CBS News corrected their story on New Orleans cops shooting and killing Army Corps of Engineers contractors. In the corrected article, they say that gunmen fired on eight Army Corps of Engineers Contractors. Police then fatally shot the gunmen who fired on the contractors. The contractors were not killed, the Army Corps said. No other details were immediately available.
· The ugly truth. While the nation mourns the destitute and dying from hurricane Katrina, government failures are not merely a matter of incompetence. Louisiana and New Orleans have a long, well-known reputation for corruption: as former congressman Billy Tauzin once put it, "half of Louisiana is under water and the other half is under indictment." That's putting it mildly. Adjusted for population size, the state ranks third in the number of elected officials convicted of crimes (Mississippi is No. 1). The rot included the New Orleans Police Department, which in the 1990s had the dubious distinction of being the nation's most corrupt police force and the least effective.
· Blame game: It's Alaska's fault. If Congress hadn't steered so much money to Alaska, they would have had enough to fully fund last year's $105 million request from the Army Corps of Engineers for hurricane and flood programs in New Orleans, according to observers. While Congress carved out $40 million of the $105 million request, Alaska was given $231 million to build a bridge to a small island that is home to about 50 people.
· New Orleans mayor fears CIA "will take him out." New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said he's feeling better about his city, but he said he fears the Central Intelligence Agency may "take him out" because he's been yelling at government officials. Last night he told a reporter for the Associated Press: "If the CIA slips me something and next week you don't see me, you'll know what happened."
» Cops are overwhelmed, quitting, and committing suicide. Reeling from the chaos of this overwhelmed city, at least 200 New Orleans police officers have walked away from their jobs and two have committed suicide, police officials said.
· Warren Beatty biography shocker. In "Warren Beatty: A Private Man," due out next month, Suzanne Finstad reveals the reticent playboy's strong religious upbringing that's so much at odds with his Hollywood lifestyle. Just as he was going off to film 1961's "Splendor in the Grass," Beatty knocked up girlfriend Joan Collins and took her to New Jersey to get an illegal "backstreet" abortion. Collins had "hysterical" second thoughts, Finstad writes, but Beatty was "distraught" and "panicked" that a child out of wedlock would damage his career, according to the book.
· Suspects in teen’s disappearance released. All three suspects in the disappearance of an Alabama teenager were released from jail Saturday in a setback for the prosecution and the biggest blow yet to Natalee Holloway’s family. Joran van der Sloot, an 18-year-old Dutchman, and two Surinamese brothers, Satish Kalpoe, 18 and Deepak Kalpoe, 21, were released on condition they remain in Dutch territory and be available to police for questioning.
· Grisham to Donate $5 million to Katrina Relief. Bestselling writer John Grisham and his wife will contribute $5 million to a relief fund they established this week at a Tupelo bank to help Mississippians rebuild after Hurricane Katrina.
· Kuwait Pledges $500M for Hurricane Relief. The oil-rich Persian Gulf state of Kuwait said Sunday it will donate $500 million in aid to U.S. relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina. The offer is the largest known put forward since the hurricane ravaged Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama and follows a $100 million aid donation from the emir of a Mideast neighbor, Qatar.
· Golfer Greg Norman Lends His Helicopter To Katrina Relief Efforts. Just as he did following last year's destructive hurricane season, Greg Norman is lending his personal helicopter to the Hurricane Katrina relief effort. Norman sent the helicopter to the greater Louisiana area on Friday, and said it'll remain in service to help the cause for as long as month. His pilot, Gary Hogan, will fly medical supplies and other items into the affected areas.
· New Orleans Begins to Deal With Its Dead. As the last weary refugees from the Superdome and convention center headed to shelters, New Orleans drew closer to dealing with its dead, a gruesome landscape of corpses expected to number in the thousands.
Saturday, September 3, 2005
· Banks Give Reprieve to Stricken Homeowners. With tens of thousands of homeowners in four states displaced by Hurricane Katrina, some banks and finance companies are allowing customers to forgo monthly mortgage payments for 90 days without incurring late fees or other penalties.
· Cruise ships chartered for hurricane refugees. Federal officials are chartering three of Carnival Cruise Lines' ships for six months, part of a FEMA plan to provide shelter for as many as 7,000 people displaced by devastating Hurricane Katrina. The three ships — the Ecstasy, Sensation and Holiday — will be pulled from regular use starting Monday.
· Radio host urges poor to loot. In a broadcast yesterday, Air America radio talk show host Randi Rhodes repeatedly urged listeners in the hurricane-devastated Gulf Coast to go out and loot, insisting the poor should be allowed to steal goods at will. Rhodes said hurricane victims should avoid discount centers such as Wal-Mart and focus their looting on higher-end stores in order to get good quality products.
· FEMA chief was "asked to resign" from previous job. The federal official in charge of the bungled New Orleans rescue was fired from his last private-sector job overseeing horse shows. And before joining the Federal Emergency Management Agency as a deputy director in 2001, GOP activist Mike Brown had no significant experience that would have qualified him for the position.
· NBC Concert: "George Bush doesn't care about black people." It began, fittingly enough, with jazz from New Orleans natives Harry Connick Jr. and Wynton Marsalis. But "A Concert for Hurricane Relief," a heartfelt and dignified benefit aired on NBC and other networks Friday night, took an unexpected turn thanks to the outspoken rapper Kanye West. Appearing two-thirds through the program, West took the government to task, claiming "George Bush doesn't care about black people." Comedian Mike Myers was paired with West for a 90-second segment that began with Myers speaking of Katrina's devastation. Then, to Myers' evident surprise, West began a rant by saying, "I hate the way they portray us in the media. If you see a black family, it says they're looting. See a white family, it says they're looking for food." Without getting specific, he added, "They've given them permission to go down and shoot us." After he stated, "George Bush doesn't care about black people," the camera cut away to comedian Chris Tucker.
» Flashback on rapper Kanye West: "I know the government administers AIDS." I know the government administers AIDS," Kanye West claims in "Heard 'em Say," repeating a dangerous conspiracy theory that detracts from his much more valid questioning of the hypocrisies of the war on drugs and the war in Iraq. "Crack raised the murder rate in D.C. and Maryland/We invested in that/It's like we got Merrill-Lynched," he raps in "Crack Music," before going on to ask, "Who gave Saddam anthrax?/ George Bush [has] got the answers."
· Tilly Wins Second Major Poker Tournament. Actress Jennifer Tilly has won her second major poker tournament and confidence in her playing ability. "I felt like I was suffering from the 'impostor syndrome,'" said Tilly, who jumped from the table after her win. "I had these niggling self-doubts, but now I know I can play."
· Chirac Hospitalized for Vision Trouble. President Jacques Chirac has been hospitalized in Paris after suffering from a blood vessel problem affecting his eyesight and was expected to remain there for about a week, the prime minister said Saturday.
Friday, September 2, 2005
· Ohio High School Has 64 Pregnant Students. Thirteen percent of the female students at Timken Senior High School in Ohio are pregnant. "It's time to take the blinders off and realize that these kids are having sex," one mother said. "Obviously, abstinence is not working. If we have to, just give them condoms."
· Brothers' Release Ordered in Aruba Case. A judge on Friday ordered the conditional release of two Surinamese brothers held in the disappearance of an Alabama teenager, their lawyers said. The two will be freed Saturday along with another suspect.
· Dave Matthews Band to Do Benefit Concert. The Dave Matthews Band will perform a Sept. 12 concert at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, with all profits to go to charities supporting victims of Hurricane Katrina.
· New Orleans employees bound for Denver. Family-owned Oreck Corp., which makes vacuum cleaners and other cleaning products, is running the company from a hotel room in Houston. The company said it is bringing in temporary housing, generators, food, water and medical supplies to help the employees of its plant near Gulfport, Miss. "My Dad founded this company 40 years ago and I'm not going to let a hurricane destroy what he created," Tom Oreck said in a statement.
· Man drops $50,000 on street. A 19-year-old man who said he was given $50,000 by his father to help him start a new life, lost it on a Littleton, Colorado street Thursday and police said that several dozen people stopped to scoop up $100 bills that were scattered. Police said a couple on their way to church found $31,000 of the money and turned it in to police. The remainder is still missing.
· Astrodome: 'No Vacancy.' After accepting more than 11,000 Hurricane Katrina evacuees, officials said the Astrodome was full and at least temporarily halted the flow of evacuees into the shelter Thursday night.
· Opening Statements Begin in Blake Case. A lawyer for the children of actor Robert Blake's slain wife acknowledged Thursday that Bonny Lee Bakley "did some stupid things in her life" but loved her kids, and he said he would prove Blake's actions led to her killing. After yacking for nearly four hours, he was cut off by Superior Court Judge David Schacter on grounds he persisted in presenting arguments rather than stating facts.
· New Orleans rocked by huge blasts. The New Orleans riverfront has been hit by a series of massive blasts, and fires are raging in the area. Details are sketchy, but the blast is believed to have involved a chemical factory. A large cloud of acrid, black smoke is drifting over New Orleans.
· Storm victims were raped and beaten. Storm victims were raped and beaten, fights and fires broke out, corpses lay out in the open, and rescue helicopters and law enforcement officers were shot at as flooded-out New Orleans descended into anarchy Thursday. "This is a desperate SOS," the mayor said.
· Bomb survivor blasts Bianca Jagger. A survivor of a suicide bombing cursed out Bianca Jagger Monday night during a dinner party after the self-styled "human-rights activist" and her friends told him, "American soldiers are raping and killing women and children around the globe."
· Fats Domino found OK in New Orleans. Rock 'n' roll pioneer Fats Domino was among the thousands of New Orleans residents plucked from rising floodwaters, his daughter said Thursday. The singer behind the 1950s hits "Blueberry Hill," was identified late Thursday being helped off a boat near his home in New Orleans. There isn't yet any information about his wife, Rosemary.
· Judge orders Aruban teen released. A judge on Thursday ordered the release of a Dutch teenager who has been jailed for nearly three months in the disappearance of an Alabama honors student and said he would be freed this weekend, the youth's father and attorney said. Paul van der Sloot said the judge ruled there was no reason to hold his son, Joran, any longer on suspicion of murder but the youth remained a suspect in the sexual assault of 18-year-old Natalee Holloway.
· Dad killed letting child drive 70mph. A father died after he allowed his seven-year-old son to drive at 70mph on a freeway, an inquest has heard. Peter Mourier, 50, encouraged his son David to lean over from the passenger seat and take control of his car.
· Katrina Curbs Hollywood's Love of La. Hurricane Katrina already has forced some Hollywood productions to film elsewhere, and its devastation has decimated the progress Louisiana was making in luring filmmakers to the state with generous tax incentives. "Louisiana had been on a roll, but they literally came to a crashing halt," said Jack Kyser, chief economist at the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp. "New Orleans is not going to be a good location for filming, probably for several years."
· Congress Sending $10.5B in Relief Aid. Congress rushed to provide a $10.5 billion in relief aid for Gulf Coast victims of Hurricane Katrina on Thursday as President Bush ordered new action to minimize disruptions in the nation's energy supplies.
· Bodies of Missing Americans Found in Canada. Police found the bodies of two young American men Thursday who have been missing for 10 days, but couldn't tell if foul play was involved in their deaths, authorities said. The remains of Steve Wright, 20, of Santa Rosa, Calif., and Mark Kraynak, 23, of Uniontown, Pa., were found at the bottom of a rock quarry near a nightclub.
Thursday, September 1, 2005
· Doctors plead for help as hospitals run out of food, power; 'please help us.' Doctors at two desperately crippled hospitals in New Orleans called The Associated Press Thursday morning pleading for rescue, saying they were nearly out of food and power and had been forced to move patients to higher floors to escape looters.
· New bankruptcy law a problem for Katrina victims. Hurricane Katrina is expected to cause a spurt of bankruptcy filings by storm victims - and sweeping changes in U.S. bankruptcy laws may leave them even more strapped than they otherwise might be.
· New Orleans will have to dry itself out. Even when Katrina's floodwaters are pumped out of New Orleans a process that could take weeks the city will be anything but dry. Buildings, vehicles and their contents will be waterlogged and covered with mud. Whatever debris is currently sloshing around in the floodwaters will be strewn about the city in enormous piles. The city's drinking water distribution system will need to be flushed out and disinfected, a process that could take weeks or even months.
· House Speaker: Rebuilding New Orleans doesn't make sense. House Speaker Dennis Hastert dropped a bombshell on flood-ravaged New Orleans on Thursday by saying it isn’t sensible to rebuild the city. Hastert said that he supports an emergency bailout, but raised questions about rebuilding a city below sea level that will continue to be in the path of powerful hurricanes.
· Police: Miss. man kills sister over bag of ice. Police in Hattiesburg, Miss., said a man fatally shot his sister in the head over a bag of ice. Authorities say 35-year-old Antonio Page shot his sister with a handgun on a street corner.
· NBC sends armed guards to lawless Gulf Coast. NBC News has sent armed private security personnel to the increasingly dicey Gulf Coast region to help keep its employees safe while covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. News organizations are relying on techniques and technologies normally used in wartime.
· 'Complete Chaos.' Thousands are floating in the water or drowned in attics, 50,000 to 60,000 people are now seeking evacuation, a National Guardsman was shot, an ambulance was flipped over during a hospital evacuation, electricity is out for more than 2.3 million people, gasoline supplies causing spikes above $5 per gallon, and looting continues by AK-47 armed men - despite more than 10,000 National Guard troops brought in to control them.
» Unrest Intensifies at Superdome Shelter. Fights and trash fires broke out at the hot and stinking Superdome and anger and unrest mounted across New Orleans on Thursday, as National Guardsmen in armored vehicles poured in to help restore order across the increasingly lawless and desperate city. "We are out here like pure animals. We don't have help," the Rev. Issac Clark, 68, said outside the New Orleans Convention Center, where corpses lay out in the open heat.
» Rescue operations suspended. As police and National Guard troops struggled to restore order Thursday in New Orleans, emergency teams suspended boat rescue operations because conditions in the flooded city were too dangerous, rescuers said. Authorities were concerned for the rescuers' safety because people are becoming violent toward the rescuers.
· Superdome evacuation stops after shots fired at military helicopter. A medical official says the evacuation of the Superdome in New Orleans has stopped because of shots fired at military helicopters. "We have suspended operations until they gain control of the Superdome," said Richard Zeuschlag, head of Acadian Ambulance, which was handling the evacuation of sick and injured people from the Superdome.
· 'Fats' Domino Missing in New Orleans. Rock 'n' Roll legend Antoine “Fats” Domino, 76, lives with his wife Rosemary and daughter in a three story pink-roofed house in New Orleans’ 9th ward, which is now underwater. On Monday afternoon, Domino told his manager, Al Embry of Nashville, that he would “ride out the storm” at home.
· Companies pitch in. Corporations are contributing millions of dollars in relief aid to help cope with the destruction left by Hurricane Katrina. The contains a list of the companies that have taken steps to provide aid to those in need of funds, food and medicine following Monday's storm.
· Caskets Washing Up On Shores Of Mississippi. Dozens of caskets are washing up on the shores of Gulfport, Miss., providing another grim reminder of a storm that may have killed thousands in the state and in neighboring Louisiana.
· Troops, Police Deployed to Stop Looting. National Guard troops in armored vehicles poured into New Orleans Thursday to curb the growing lawlessness as Mississippi's governor vowed to deal with looters in the neighboring state as "ruthlessly as we can get our hands on them." About 10,000 National Guard troops from around the country were ordered to shore up security, rescue and relief operations along the hurricane-battered Gulf Coast.
· Television benefit for hurricane victims. Friday's concert will include country singer Tim McGraw, pianist and singer Harry Connick Jr. and jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, all Louisiana natives. Viewers will be encouraged to donate to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund in support of hurricane relief.
· If you are donating for Hurricane Katrina victims, click here to supercharge it. The McCormick Tribune Foundation will match the first $1,000,000 contributed to the campaign at 50 cents on the dollar. All administrative costs will be paid by the foundation so that all funds can be distributed directly to disaster relief organizations that provide short and long-term aid to those affected by Hurricane Katrina.
· Gas prices surge above $3. Drivers in Atlanta said stations were charging well over $3 a gallon for regular unleaded, and at least one station in Stockbridge, Ga., was charging customers $5.87 a gallon. The price hikes were felt nationwide, with gasoline surging to $3.59 in Boston, $3.58 in Milwaukee and well above $3 in New York.
· London Nixes Ads for Jerry Hall TV Show. Jerry Hall, ex-wife of Rolling Stone Mick Jagger, is in trouble below ground. Ads for her new reality show, "Kept," have been banned from London's subway system because the poster - which shows Hall surrounded by several half-naked men with her holding a leash wrapped around their necks - violates a rule banning the use of people as sex objects.