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hProtests in Los Angeles over death of toddler



Published: Sat, July 16, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



hProtests in Los Angelesover death of toddler

LOS ANGELES -- Dozens of protesters wave signs branding police as "baby killers." They heckle passing police cars as lines of baton-toting officers keep close watch on the restless crowd. A police shootout this week that took the life of a toddler whose father held her as a shield has brought irate residents, including activist Malike Spellman, above, back to the streets of Watts, where 40 summers ago a deadly riot came to symbolize America's urban despair. "We've got some trigger-happy policemen that don't belong on that force," Joeanne Gibson, 47, said at a growing makeshift memorial for the young victim, Suzie Pena. "I don't think they intended to shoot the baby, yet it could've been done another way." The child was killed by a SWAT team bullet July 10 in the arms of her father, Jose Pena, 34, as he fired dozens of rounds at officers, wounding one of them. The father, who police said was drunk and high, also was killed in the shootout outside his used-car business.

Bush praises CAFTA

DALLAS, N.C. -- President Bush portrayed an endangered free-trade treaty as another front in the global war on terror Friday, suggesting his Central America Free Trade Agreement was not only good for commerce but for shoring up fragile democracies in the region. "It's in our interest that those democracies be strong and viable. There are still forces that oppose democratic government there," he said. "There are forces that are hostile to our interests. It will help advance a key part of our foreign policy." Bush made his pitch in a state where GOP support for the pact is weak, and with a visit to a textile plant, where critics suggest jobs could be jeopardized by the measure. Bush suggested the legislation, which passed the Senate earlier this month but faces a tough time in the House, would help bring more jobs to the United States, not send them fleeing. "It's a pro-jobs bill. It's a pro-growth bill. It's a pro-democracy bill," Bush said.

Giving birth while drunk?

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. -- A woman who police say had been drinking heavily before she gave birth was charged with child neglect after the baby was born intoxicated and diagnosed with fetal alcohol syndrome. Melissa Irene Tanner, 37, had a blood alcohol content of 0.29 percent when she gave birth June 30, and her daughter's was 0.21 percent, according to an affidavit by police. The legal limit for drivers in Oklahoma is 0.08 percent. Hospital staff had to use an oxygen bag to help the baby start breathing and gave her medication to counteract any narcotics, according to the affidavit. Tanner allegedly told police she and another person had consumed a case of beer and that she regularly drank during her pregnancy. She was jailed on $30,000 bail. At a court appearance this week, Tanner was advised of her rights and ordered to return to court Aug. 5.

Sen. Clinton raises $6M

WASHINGTON -- In a Senate race that could have implications for the 2008 presidential contest, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton raised more than $6 million between April and June. Campaign reports filed by Senate candidates Friday with the Federal Election Commission showed the former first lady, a New York Democrat, had $12.6 million cash on hand at the end of last month, even though she has no clear opponent yet. Manhattan lawyer Edward Cox, a son-in-law of former President Nixon, has begun preparations to challenge Clinton, and Republican party officials also are courting Westchester County District Attorney Jeanine Pirro as a possible challenger.

Canadian cattle to return

WASHINGTON -- Paperwork is all that prevents truckloads of Canadian cattle from rolling into the United States now that a federal appeals court has lifted a ban related to mad cow disease, Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said Friday. Both countries had been anticipating the ruling and may be ready to resume shipments next week, Johanns told reporters in a telephone call. "Our hope is that we're talking about days and not weeks," said Johanns, who was on a trade mission in Madagascar. "It could be as early as next week, but we do want to make sure everything's in place." A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday unanimously overturned a Montana judge's decision that had kept the border closed.

Associated Press




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