Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

August 27, 2004

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"I've learned from my mistakes, and those things happen for a reason. This opportunity was a blessing. With the flag incident [in Australia], I'm happy that this time I got to do it right."

--- Bernard Williams, silver medalist in the 200-meter sprint, on his subdued victory lap four years after a criticized celebration with the American flag (Article, Page 1A)

MARKETS

DOW (down)

- 8.33

10,173.41

NASDAQ (down)

- 7.80

1,852.92

S&P (up)

+ 0.13

1,105.09

SUNINDEX (down)

- 0.53

259.96

NATIONAL

Bush, Kerry bow to McCain on ads

President Bush and Sen. John Kerry bowed to the wishes of popular maverick John McCain as the president embraced the Republican senator's legal fight against big-money special interest groups airing negative ads and the Democratic nominee scrapped a commercial that featured McCain. [Page 1a]

Ruling against Partial-Birth act

A federal judge declared the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act unconstitutional in the second such ruling in three months, even though he called the abortion procedure gruesome, brutal, barbaric and uncivilized. U.S. District Judge Richard C. Casey was one of three judges to hear simultaneous challenges to the law this year. [Page 3a]

Kennedy cousin accused of assault

A woman said in a lawsuit that William Kennedy Smith sexually assaulted her in 1999. Her lawyer said she did not report it then because she was intimidated by Smith's wealth and connections. The Kennedy cousin, cleared of rape charges in 1991, said he is a target for "outrageous" allegations. [Page 5a]

WORLD

Shiite cleric wins accord in Najaf

Followed by hundreds of supporters, Iraq's revered top Shiite cleric returned to Najaf yesterday and quickly won an agreement with a renegade cleric to end the fighting there. Meanwhile, an Italian journalist was reportedly killed by his captors. [Page 1a]

Flight recorders damaged in air

Russian authorities say the flight recorders from both crashed airliners were damaged before the planes hit the ground, suggesting explosions, while a Russian official acknowledged that a mid-air attack was considered the leading cause of the near-simultaneous disasters. [Page 13a]

MARYLAND

Medical lab rules under review

State health officials are reviewing the way many medical laboratories are regulated after finding such serious problems at a Rosedale facility that 3,000 patients are being offered retesting to check the accuracy of results for sexually transmitted diseases. Regulators ordered Reference Pathology Services of Maryland to shut down. [Page 1a]

Closed detention hearing sought

Federal prosecutors asked a judge to close a detention hearing scheduled for today for Ismail Selim Elbarasse, a Virginia man being held in Baltimore as a material witness in a Chicago case involving the militant group Hamas. Elbarasse was detained a week ago after his wife's videotaping of the Bay Bridge caught the attention of police. [Page 1b]

Inquiry focuses on election official

A veteran investigator from the state public safety department has been assigned to dig up information on the performance of Linda H. Lamone, Maryland's elections chief, apparently to build a case for firing her. [Page 1b]

BUSINESS

Malpractice-case reform pushed

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is spending time in hospitals, pressing for reform on how courts deal with medical malpractice cases. Rising malpractice premiums jeopardize access to care, he said. Legislative leaders called the tours grandstanding. [Page 1c]

Investment bank to pay settlement

Deutsche Bank Securities agreed to pay $87.5 million to settle allegations that it issued stock research that was biased by its investment-banking business, regulators announced, as part of a crackdown on conflicts of interest on Wall Street. [Page 1c]

Ahold profit lower than expected

Dutch retailer Ahold NV, recovering from a major accounting scandal largely attributed to its Columbia-based U.S. food distribution business, reported a lower-than-expected profit for the second quarter yesterday, reflecting weak U.S. results. Its shares fell nearly 8 percent. [Page 1c]

TODAY

Ruling near on reality-TV shows

A Los Angeles judge could decide today the winner in the fight between NBC and Fox over reality boxing shows - Fox's The Next Great Champ and NBC's The Contender. NBC says Fox stole its idea, and says Champ should be counted out. [Page 1d]

`Phantom' run to be trimmed

The run of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera will be trimmed by two weeks, closing at the Hippodrome Sept. 19 instead of Oct. 3, said Marks Chowning, executive director of the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center. [Page 10d]

SPORTS

U.S. women win gold in soccer

Abby Wambach scored in the 112th minute off a corner kick from Kristine Lilly to give the U.S. women's soccer team a 2-1 win over Brazil in overtime for the Olympic gold medal. The game marked the final competitive appearance together for remaining players from the first World Cup championship in 1991, including Mia Hamm. [Page 1a]

Carver's Williams gets a silver

Carver High alumnus Bernard Williams won the silver medal in the 200-meter sprint with a personal-best time of 20.01 seconds. Mervo alum James Carter was in position to win the 400 hurdles coming off the final turn, but faltered badly over the last two barriers and faded to a fourth-place finish. [Page 1a]

Orioles are swept by Oakland

The Oakland Athletics completed a four-game sweep of the Orioles with a 9-4 victory. The Orioles have lost 10 straight overall, their longest skid since ending the 2002 season with 12 losses. O's shortstop Miguel Tejada went 1-for-15 in the series against his former team. [Page 1e]

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