Stating the Obvious
Leslie Edward Smith, 62, called 911 in Raleigh, N.C., to report having
“shot this girl who’s been living in my house. She won’t get out, so I
shot her.” According to a transcript provided to the Raleigh News &
Observer, Smith told the dispatcher he had put down the gun and that
the victim was seriously wounded, probably dead.
“Is she beyond help?” the dispatcher asked.
“She should be,” Smith answered. “I shot her point blank in the chest.”
After he declined the dispatcher’s request to perform CPR, the dispatcher insisted, “You got to try to help her.”
“I don’t want to help her. She’s dead.”
When the dispatcher again urged Smith try to revive the victim, Smith muttered, “This is ridiculous. I just shot her.”
China’s Spring Airlines announced it is considering selling
standing-room tickets to allow it to handle the growing number of
passengers. Airline official Zhang Wuan told CCTV that standees would
actually be assigned bar stools equipped with safety belts. MSNBC
reported the airline estimated the measure would increase plane
capacity by 40 percent, trim costs by 20 percent and lower fares for
Following Spring’s example, Ireland’s low-cost airline Ryanair said it
was considering ripping out the back five or six rows of seats on some
flights so passengers could sit on bar stools or stand for flights of
less than 90 minutes. “Why is this any different to what happens on
trains where you see thousands of people who cannot get a seat standing
in the aisles?” Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary told Sky News.
He indicated that passengers willing to stand could fly for free.
Robert P. Trout, defense attorney for former Louisiana Congressman
William J. Jefferson, sought to redeem his client by arguing at his
corruption trial in Alexandria, Va., that Jefferson isn’t a criminal,
just “stupid.” The Washington Post reported Trout told jurors that the
high-profile case, which included the FBI’s finding $90,000 in bribe
money in Jefferson’s freezer, has made Jefferson, who faces up to 235
years for the various counts against him, basically “a national joke.”
Don’t Blame Me
After Catherine Stotts, 62, injured a highway worker while driving in a
closed lane during a repaving operation, she told California Highway
Patrol officers she was driving in the wrong lane because she was “not
used” to driving on new asphalt. She added she thought the 60-year-old
victim could have jumped out of her way faster.
First Shall Be Last
A program that charged airline passengers to speed them through
security checkpoints has gone out of business. The Associated Press
reported that Verified Identity Pass, which operated its Clear
fast-lane security check service at about 20 airports, had more than a
quarter-million customers, who paid annual membership fees ranging from
$178 to $199. Besides having to wait in line with ordinary travelers,
members will not be issued refunds.
News and Blues is compiled from the nation’s press. To contribute,
submit original clippings, citing date and source, to Roland Sweet in
care of The New Times.