Three Marines killedin training accident
CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. -- Three Marines were killed and five injured when the vehicle they were riding in during a training exercise overturned, a U.S. Marine Corps spokesman said.
The accident occurred at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, 1st Lt. Kyle Lewis said. He said he couldn't release any other details, including what kind of vehicle was involved, because the accident was under investigation.
The names of the Marines were withheld pending family notification.
Two of the injured Marines were listed in fair condition. The conditions of the others were not immediately available.
At least four Marines have been killed and 10 others injured at Camp Pendleton over the past three years. Two of the deaths occurred during training exercises.
Six Marines and a Navy corpsman died in December 1999 when their twin-rotor CH-46E Sea Knight crashed 15 miles off the San Diego coast during training for a deployment to the Persian Gulf.
Capitol shut downafter report of gunman
HARTFORD, Conn. -- Reports that a gunman was spotted in the state Capitol complex Wednesday prompted authorities to lock it down as the legislative session got under way.
Authorities searched the buildings but didn't find a gunman or a weapon, said state police spokesman Sgt. Paul Vance.
The complex was declared "secure" nearly seven hours after two women told police they saw a man with a weapon on the top level of the Legislative Office Building's parking garage.
"Everyone is confident the scene is secure," Vance said. "Everything is in the process of being opened and will be back to normal in a short time."
The reports came shortly after the General Assembly opened its 2002 session with a speech by Gov. John G. Rowland. Hundreds more people than usual were in the Capitol for the speech and the start of the session.
The state Supreme Court building across from the Capitol was closed, as were surrounding streets and a nearby interstate exit.
Police herded people from the Legislative Office Building into the adjacent Capitol through an underground walkway as state and local police searched the area. A state police helicopter hovered over the building for hours.
"It's not an overreaction," said Rep. Patrick Flaherty. "This is a symbolic building, which does mean it's a potential target."
Parliament OKs displayof Thatcher statue
LONDON -- Making an exception for an exceptional woman, Parliament has changed its rules to permit the display of an 8-foot statue of Margaret Thatcher while the Iron Lady is still alive, a House of Commons official said Wednesday.
"The significant factor is that whether people love her or hate her, she was and will always remain the first woman prime minister," said Derek Conway, chairman of the accommodation and works committee.
Parliamentary rules said the sculpture could not be exhibited in the House until after Thatcher's death. She is still going strong at 76, and lawmakers have been arguing about what to do with the large marble statue in the meantime.
Conway said Michael Martin, speaker of the House of Commons, has changed the rules. Now a former prime minister can have a portrait or statue displayed in the parliamentary main buildings before death provided there have been three elections since the leader left office. The minimum period of time for the three elections is 12 years.
Thatcher, who first became prime minister in 1979, resigned in November 1990 during the 1987-92 Parliament. The 12-year period could therefore be dated "from the beginning of the 1987 Parliament," Conway said.
The Neil Simmons sculpture, in white Italian marble, shows Thatcher standing in a floor-length skirt and tailored jacket.
No green thumbin marijuana case
ASHLAND, Ore. -- A man charged with growing marijuana at his house could have been jailed for years, but was sentenced to probation because the plants were in such bad shape.
William Lavon Atchley, 44, initially faced a charge of drug manufacturing -- which carries a maximum 20-year sentence -- for growing three marijuana plants.
But the plants were in such bad condition, public defender Herbert Putney argued that Atchley should face a lesser sentence.
"He was almost embarrassed to admit they were his, it was so straggly," Putney said.
He was sentenced to one year of probation and a $500 fine for marijuana possession.