Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

September 13, 2005

NATIONAL

FEMA director resigns post

Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Brown resigned yesterday, three days after being removed from his responsibilities overseeing Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts. President Bush named R. David Paulison, head of FEMA's preparedness division, as acting director. [Page 1a]

Roberts talks to judiciary panel

Judge John G. Roberts Jr., President Bush's nominee for chief justice, said yesterday that Supreme Court justices have a "limited role" - to apply the law, not make it. His remarks, delivered without notes and lasting six minutes, addressed issues raised by members of the Judiciary Committee. [Page 1a]

Report critical of FBI agents

FBI agents often violate bureau rules for handling confidential informants that were revised after FBI abuses in the 1990s, the Justice Department's internal watchdog said yesterday. A review of 120 confidential informant files from offices around the country found violations in 104 cases, Inspector General Glenn A. Fine said. [Page 3a]

WORLD

Violence continues in N. Ireland

Scores of charred vehicles were on streets in Belfast, Northern Ireland, while shells of burned-out buildings smoldered from violence that began Saturday after a parade by Protestants. The unrest continued yesterday with Protestants blocking intersections and fire bombing police stations. [Page 1a]

Celebrations mark Gaza pullout

In the abandoned settlements of Gaza, yesterday was a carnival of celebration, political grandstanding and scavenging by a Palestinian population whose occupiers had vanished overnight. The Israeli army pulled its last soldier out of Gaza at 6:50 a.m. [Page 10a]

German elections like a carnival

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's bid for a third term has led to foibles and angry rhetoric from liberals and conservatives that have aggravated animosities between east and west, and rich and working class. [Page 13a]

MARYLAND

Probe to look at distrust of police

A judge assigned the city's new grand jury to investigate the lack of confidence between members of the public and law enforcement - another signal of continuing distrust of police officers in courtrooms. Two judges have thrown out gun charges recently, citing testimony by officers. [Page 1a]

Sweatt gets 136 years in arsons

Thomas A. Sweatt, the once-elusive "firebug" responsible for setting more than 45 fires in Maryland, Virginia and Washington that killed two people, was sentenced in federal court to serve life plus 136 years in prison. His attorney said an unspecified mental illness compelled him to set the fires. [Page 1a]

City may might recall prosecutor

The Baltimore state's attorney is threatening to recall a city prosecutor assigned to the U.S. attorney's office because the city plans to give $200,000 directly to federal prosecutors to go after criminals who use firearms to commit crimes. [Page 1b]

SPORTS

Boller out `3 weeks to 2 months'

Ravens quarterback Kyle Boller will miss Sunday's game at the Tennessee Titans with a hyperextended right big toe and could be sidelined anywhere from "three weeks to two months," coach Brian Billick said. Anthony Wright will start. [Page 1c]

O's, Cabrera defeat Rangers, 4-2

Daniel Cabrera struck out seven to win his second straight start since coming off the disabled list, pitching the Orioles past the host Texas Rangers, 4-2. Cabrera allowed two runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings, as the Orioles won their third consecutive game. [Page 1c]

Vick lifts Falcons over Eagles

Michael Vick ran for one touchdown and set up another with a long pass, helping the Atlanta Falcons to a 14-10 victory over the visiting Eagles in a rematch of January's NFC championship game won by Philadelphia. [Page 7c]

BUSINESS

Area real-estate market easing?

The Baltimore area's tight real-estate market showed signs of easing during August, although prices continued to rise at a double-digit pace. The average sales price rose nearly 16 percent last month over August 2004, the smallest year-over-year percent increase this year. [Page 1d]

Ruling for undocumented workers

Undocumented workers injured on the job are eligible for workers' compensation benefits, the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled. The court found that Diego E. Lagos, injured in 2001 while working as a carpenter for a Montgomery County company, could receive benefits despite his status as an undocumented worker. [Page 1d]

Stifel to buy Legg Mason division

Stifel Financial Corp. agreed to buy the investment banking, research and trading operations of Legg Mason Inc., which Citigroup Inc. inherited as part of a separate deal. The St. Louis-based brokerage and investment banking firm agreed to pay as much as $95 million for the Legg Mason operations. [Page 1d]

TODAY

Reality TV is fading, poll shows

The results of an Associated Press/TV Guide poll released yesterday suggest that viewers have had enough of reality shows and, worse for their producers, 82 percent believe that the shows are distorted or phony. [Page 1e]

Roy Horn shows signs of recovery

Las Vegas animal trainer Roy Horn continues to make steps in his recovery from a near-fatal tiger mauling 23 months ago. Horn walked unassisted into a Thursday performance of Avenue Q at the Wynn Las Vegas resort, said Bernie Yuman, longtime manager of the Siegfried & Roy show. [Page 2e]

TODAY ONLINE

ROBERTS HEARINGS

Get archived coverage of recent changes related to the Supreme Court. www.baltimoresun.com/court

GAS PRICING

Gasoline prices continue to vex consumers. Check out archived coverage of fuel costs. www.baltimoresun.com/gasprices

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"I come before the committee with no agenda. I have no platform. Judges are not politicians who can promise to do certain things in exchange for votes."

John G. Roberts Jr., to the Senate Judiciary Committee on the first day of hearings on his nomination as chief justice (Article, Page 1A)

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