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Stories from Friday, December 5, 2003

Later reports show mixed November for retailers (12/05/03)
NEW YORK -- Hopes for a robust holiday shopping season faded Thursday after the nation's retailers reported mixed results for the Thanksgiving weekend and all of November. Initial reports showed retailers had an upbeat start to the holiday season. Those results came from mall operators and analysts who examined preliminary sales data...
Work on deteriorating Bloomfield Road bridge begins (12/05/03)
Motorists on heavily traveled Bloomfield Road could be driving over a temporary gravel road before the end of the year as workers begin to replace a deteriorating, narrow bridge that's barely wide enough for today's traffic. "It's dangerous, really," said Beatrice Margrabe, who lives just west of the bridge that spans Ramsey Branch. "We've needed a new bridge for a long time."...
Ceremony to mark street project's completion (12/05/03)
Cape Girardeau city officials will cut a ribbon at 2 p.m. today to mark the completion of the $1.2 million Fountain Street extension, even though the street will remain closed until the Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge opens Dec. 13. The street runs from Highway 74 to Morgan Oak, bordering Southeast Missouri State University's planned River Campus ....
In time for troops? (12/05/03)
A total of about $1,500. Today by 5 p.m. That means you can't mail it. You have to drop it off yourself. It sounds like a ransom demand, but the only thing it has in common is the urgency. That amount of money is what Shoeboxes for Soldiers desperately needs today in order to make sure some Southeast Missouri soldiers have a few gifts to open -- and a taste of home -- on a Christmas Day at war...
Cape police juggle duties to make up for shortages (12/05/03)
Officer Chris Muench spent Thursday working at the big front desk of the Cape Girardeau Police Department. All day, he made his goodbyes to buddies, heard good-natured jokes at his expense and explained to those who asked why he was leaving a job he loved...
Flu cases increase as supply of vaccine low locally (12/05/03)
There's no point in telling Linda Stephens of Scott City the flu season will be harsh this year. "We've all got the flu around here," Stephens said on Thursday after testing positive for influenza. "My daughters, the grandkids -- coughing, headaches, sore throat, you name it, we've got it."...
Poetry and heartbreak at the Rose (12/05/03)
The poetry of Tennessee Williams' dialogue and characterizations that capture the fury and tenderness in family relationships make for an evening of beauty and heartache at the Rose Theatre. The University Theatre production of "The Glass Menagerie" opens tonight...
Drug case nets millions of meth ingredient pills (12/05/03)
A California man pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Cape Girardeau to felony methamphetamine-related and money laundering conspiracy charges in connection with the largest psuedoephedrine case ever handled in the Eastern District of Missouri, said U.S. Attorney Ray Gruender...
Emergency response packs distributed by city (12/05/03)
Twenty-one yellow backpacks stuffed with emergency supplies were presented Thursday night at Cape Girardeau's Fire Station No. 1 to two local teams that completed courses in Citizen Emergency Response Training, or CERT. Twenty-nine members of the Civil Air Patrol and 18 retired, former and active local U.S. Marines are the city's two recognized response teams that would be called in to assist in a disaster...
Cape police report 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
Cape Girardeau The following items were released by the Cape Girardeau Police Department. Arrests do not imply guilt. Arrests n Kenneth R. Brandon, 45, Gary E. McCurtis, 48, Raymond Gates, 51, and Earl D. Boyd Jr., 47, all of Florida, were arrested Wednesday on Cape Girardeau warrants for soliciting contributions in an intersection...
Audit says improvements needed in Missouri foster care system (12/05/03)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The state foster care system needs better management and more careful background checks to ensure that children in the system are protected and state costs are held down, according to a new audit. State Auditor Claire McCaskill released the report Friday. It also said that databases for the Department of Social Services' Children's Division, which runs the foster care program, are error-ridden, meaning auditors could not figure out workers' average caseload...
Audit says improvements needed in Missouri foster care system (12/05/03)
Associated Press WriterJEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The state foster care system needs better management and more careful background checks to ensure that children in the system are protected and state costs are held down, according to a new audit...
Intelligence services take a crack at predicting 2020 (12/05/03)
McLEAN, Va. -- It's 2020 and America, Europe and Japan struggle to maintain a decent quality of life for masses of elderly people. China faces a choice between belligerence and joining Western nations as an economic superpower. India, Brazil and Indonesia are emerging powers...
Gere talks to workers in brothels about AIDS (12/05/03)
BOMBAY, India -- Richard Gere visited brothel workers in Bombay as part of his campaign to slow the spread of HIV-AIDS in India. Gere, who's been a vocal campaigner against HIV-AIDS in the region for several years, is preparing an AIDS awareness campaign called "The Heroes Project" with celebrities he believes can carry the message of prevention and care to the average Indian...
International drug case nets meth ingredient pills (12/05/03)
A California man pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Cape Girardeau to felony methamphetamine-related and money laundering conspiracy charges in connection with the largest pseudoephedrine case ever handled in the Eastern District of Missouri. ...
Nation briefs 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
Suspect in disappearance asks to remain in custody GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Alfonso Rodriguez Jr., 50, charged with kidnapping in the disappearance of University of North Dakota student Dru Sjodin, 22, who remains missing, said through his attorney Thursday that he wanted to remain in custody for his own safety. ...
Investigators seize medical records in Limbaugh drug probe (12/05/03)
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Investigators who raided the offices of Rush Limbaugh's doctors said in search warrants filed Thursday that the conservative radio commentator engaged in illegal drug use and "doctor shopping" for prescription painkillers...
Bush scraps U.S. tariffs on steel imports (12/05/03)
WASHINGTON -- President Bush on Thursday scrapped import tariffs he had imposed last year to help the battered U.S. steel industry, defusing a threatened trade war with Europe and Japan but creating political problems for Bush in such key battleground states as Ohio and Pennsylvania...
World briefs 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
Egypt urges Palestinian groups to reach truce CAIRO, Egypt -- Palestinian factions opened talks Thursday aimed at producing a cease-fire, and Israel hinted it could reduce military activity in the West Bank and Gaza Strip if a truce were declared. Egypt is mediating the talks, and Egyptian intelligence chief Gen. ...
Explosion rocks area near U.S. Embassy (12/05/03)
KABUL, Afghanistan -- Suspected Islamic militants fired a rocket into a field next to the U.S. Embassy here Thursday, Afghan authorities said. The blast occurred less than two hours after Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld left the Afghan capital...
Bell City, Scott City charge into Oran tournament final (12/05/03)
ORAN, Mo. -- Bell City's boys basketball team won a thrilling overtime game over second-seeded Twin Rivers 72-69 on Thursday to advance to the finals of the Oran Tournament. The Cubs led by seven points heading into the fourth quarter, but free-throw problems aided No. 2 Twin Rivers' rally. Dominitrix Johnson led Bell City with 37 points. Jeff Liggens added 10 for Bell City...
Central embarks on a tough stretch (12/05/03)
Central's boys basketball team brought back nearly its entire starting five this season. That experience paid off in its opening win over Riverview Gardens, and likely will play an important role in the Tigers' grueling schedule to start the season...
Missouri president expresses relief over allegations (12/05/03)
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- University of Missouri President Elson Floyd told The Associated Press he feels "much better" about allegations of inappropriate academic help for a former basketball player after a meeting Thursday with the NCAA. But Floyd also said said Missouri hasn't been cleared, the long-running NCAA investigation isn't over, and he doesn't know when it will end...
Indians' Golson plays catch-up after ankle injury (12/05/03)
Southeast Missouri State University men's basketball coach Gary Garner expects Reggie Golson to be a key player this season. It's just going to take longer than Garner expected. Golson, a 6-foot-7 junior forward who Garner says is perhaps Southeast's most physically talented player, has struggled in the Indians' system after he recently missed several weeks of practice with an ankle injury...
Illinois fires its defensive coordinator (12/05/03)
The AssociatedPress CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Illinois defensive coordinator Mike Cassity was fired, less than two weeks after the Illini finished a 1-11 season, its worst since 1997. Illinois was last in the conference against the run, allowing almost five yards per carry and 223 yards per game. Only seven teams in the nation were worse...
Dalhousie makes list of top new private courses in Golf Digest (12/05/03)
Prestwick Plantation set out to build a golf facility with a layout, conditions and aesthetics that would appeal to the senses of golfers in the area. It accomplished that with the creation of Dalhousie Golf Club in Cape Girardeau. However, the achievement went a step further. It appealed to a magazine -- Golf Digest, no less...
A bomb - Rams DB is 'skinny' but explosive (12/05/03)
ST. LOUIS -- Quarterbacks beware. Adam Archuleta might be a defensive back, but he's more likely to be rushing the passer than chasing after an errant throw. "He's got a skinny DB's body, but he's a linebacker in his mind and his heart," defensive lineman Tyoka Jackson said. "That's the way that he plays."...
Blues surrender big lead, settle for 4-4 tie with Wings (12/05/03)
ST. LOUIS -- Pavel Datsyuk and Brett Hull scored in a 57-second span late in the third period and the Detroit Red Wings rallied from a three-goal deficit to tie the Blues 4-4 Thursday night. The Red Wings scored four times on their first 11 shots of the third against former teammate Chris Osgood. Hull has 730 goals and needs one to tie Marcel Dionne for third place on the career list...
What to do if you see an accident (12/05/03)
Dear Tom and Ray: Driving on the highway at 12:30 a.m. recently, we are in the middle lane and we come over the crest of a slight hill. There is a car stopped at an angle across the left and middle lanes. Clearly, there has been an accident. I slow down, swerve into the right lane and dodge a piece of debris. ...
A prize better than a Pulitzer (12/05/03)
The highest prize in U.S. journalism is the Pulitzer Prize. I have never won the Pulitzer Prize. The closest I've ever come to a Pulitzer Prize is submitting an entry, which is no easy task. A few years ago in Topeka, Kan., I was privileged to work for a newspaper that had won a Pulitzer Prize before my arrival. Several of the individuals who had a hand in that project were still with the newspaper, so I could say I worked with Pulitzer winners...
Hyundai Sonata offers luxury features at economy price (12/05/03)
srobertson We had a fun day last Sunday in a new Hyundai. That's more than just a silly limerick. Hyundai rhymes with Sunday, and we really did have a fun day testing a new 2004 Hyundai Sonata. I borrowed a 2004 Sonata recently, picked up three friends and drove up to the wine country west of Ste. Genevieve. It was a cold, blustery, rainy day, but we felt safe and cozy, thanks to our anti-lock brakes, traction control, and some excellent government crash test results...
Pacino, Streep, hope and tragedy star in 'Angels in America' (12/05/03)
NEW YORK -- On film, "Angels In America" asserts itself much as it did on stage, where it first thrilled audiences a decade ago. The six-hour HBO miniseries stars Al Pacino and Meryl Streep in a drama that's sprawling, funny, heartbreaking, hopeful and outrageous -- not to mention druggy with fever dreams. (Little wonder: Two of its principals are afflicted with a mysterious new plague called AIDS, while another takes too many Valiums.)...
Fountains of Wayne - Pop storytellers (12/05/03)
There's a Hackensack deadbeat pining for a high school crush who since has gone on to become a movie star. There's also the anguished ex-boyfriend stuck in traffic on the Tappan Zee Bridge. And who could forget the teenager who can't escape the lust he feels for Stacy's mom?...
Rap and R&B artists dominate charts, Grammy nominations (12/05/03)
NEW YORK -- Rap and R&B have been consistent chart-toppers for the last few years, but in 2003 they took over pop music -- and the Grammy nominations on Thursday. The year's top-selling artist: rapper 50 Cent. Two of the year's biggest hits came from R&B singer Beyonce. In October, every spot on Billboard's top 10 singles chart was held by a rap or R&B artist...
Center of the pop-rock world (12/05/03)
In 1995, Paul Doucette was 20 and working in a record store in Florida when he answered an ad placed by a band looking for a drummer. The ad said the band's influences were REM and the Replacements. "They didn't sound anything like REM or the Replacements," Doucette says. "But then I heard Rob sing, and I was pretty blown away by that."...
Opening at the theaters 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
'Honey' Starring Jessica Alba, Mekhi Phifer, Lil' Romeo, Joy Bryant, Judi Embden, and Lonette McKee. Honey Daniels, an inner-city woman into hip-hop dancing, works at a neighborhood dance studio where she's discovered by a powerful young music mogul. Flush with success as a video choreographer, she finds herself suddenly unable to get work after she turns down the mogul's sexual advances. Rated PG-13 for drug content and some sexual references, running time 95 minutes. (Cape West Cine)...
Everybody's a critic - 'The Missing' (12/05/03)
Three and a half stars (out of four) "The Missing," a film by Ron Howard, is a wonderfully bleak thriller set in New Mexico in the 1880s. Cate Blanchett is Maggie Gilkeson, a widowed healer and farmer who must find her missing daughter. Blanchett gives an excellent performance, even though at times the Australian actress sounds a bit too much like Reba McEntire. ...
'The Simple Life' gets solid ratings (12/05/03)
LOS ANGELES -- The debut of "The Simple Life," Fox's reality show about Paris Hilton and pal Nicole Richie roughing it on a farm, drew a solid 13 million viewers Tuesday, according to Nielsen Media Research. The Hilton hotel heiress' recent publicity from a sex video with a former boyfriend that appeared online may have helped...
Artifacts 12/5 (12/05/03)
Christmas Gift Tree offers original art Members of the Visual Arts Cooperative at the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri have contributed to a Christmas Gift Tree that will offer works of original art for sale during December. The tree will offer small paintings, drawings, carvings and clay works at prices from $5 to $30. Half the proceeds will go to the arts council. The arts council is located at 32 N. Main St. in Cape Girardeau...
Ray Bollinger (12/05/03)
SEDGEWICKVILLE, Mo. -- Ray Bollinger, 82, of Sedgewickville died Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2003, at Southeast Missouri Hospital in Cape Girardeau. He was born March 18, 1921, at Sedgewickville, son of Columbus and Clola Seabaugh Bollinger. He and Joann L. Rhodes were married July 30, 1971...
Albert Schabbing (12/05/03)
Albert C. Schabbing, 84, of Cape Girardeau died Thursday, Dec. 4, 2003, at his home. He was born June 10, 1919, in Cape Girardeau, son of Joseph A. and Mary Katharine Kohlfeld Schabbing Sr. He and Edna Lucille Job were married Oct. 25, 1944, in Cape Girardeau. She died Nov. 21, 2003...
Jennye Wedeking (12/05/03)
CHARLESTON, Mo. -- Jennye Lee Whitehead Wedeking, 70, of San Diego, Calif., and formerly of Charleston, died Thursday, Dec. 4, 2003, at Grossmont Hospital in San Diego. She was born Nov. 3, 1933, at Adams, Tenn., the daughter of William C. and Lucy Pauline Farmer Whitehead. She married James Russell Wedeking...
Curt Hoehne (12/05/03)
Curt Oscar "Pat" Hoehne, 84, of Shawneetown passed away Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2003, at the Lutheran Home in Cape Girardeau. He was born Aug. 28, 1919, at Altenburg, Mo., son of Joseph and Johanna Ahner Hoehne. He and Virginia Abernathy were married in 1946. She passed away in 1976. He and Marjorie Fluegge Wachter were married June 20, 1981, at Shawneetown...
Thelma Harris (12/05/03)
DEXTER, Mo. -- Thelma Harris, 84, of Dexter died Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2003, at her home. She was born Oct. 15, 1919, at Bloomfield, Mo., daughter of Samuel Newton and Ollie Stafford Williams. She and Floyd W. Harris were married Jan. 13, 1940, in Angola, Ind. He died June 1, 2001...
Cape fire report 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
Firefighters responded Wednesday to the following items: At 6:56 p.m., medical assist at 316 S. Lorimier. At 7:34 p.m., alarm at 500 William. At 11:15 p.m., medical assist at 320 Good Hope. At 11:36 p.m., medical assist at 2842 Independence...
Out of the past 12/5/03 (12/05/03)
10 years ago: Dec. 5, 1993 The Rev. Grant F.C. Gillard has accepted the pastorate at First Presbyterian Church of Jackson; Gillard recently served as associate pastor of White Clay Creek Presbyterian Church of Newark, Del. The city has added two new police officers and a firefighter to its ranks; Alvin Spencer has rejoined the Cape Girardeau Police Department, as has William C. Kincade, who worked as police officer in Charleston, Mo., before being hired by city...
Busy time with lots to do (12/05/03)
Over Thanksgiving weekend, retail stores in the Cape Girardeau area and generally nationally had the best or close to the best sales ever, according to an experienced local retailer. The Diversion Channel bridge is projected to be completed by February or March, provided the water doesn't rise and the weather stays warm on the days the contractor needs to pour some concrete...
Downtown party tonight (12/05/03)
More than 25 merchants in downtown Cape Girardeau have a special evening planned from 6 to 9 p.m. tonight, and it's something holiday shoppers won't want to miss. Tonight is the Downtown Christmas Open House featuring carolers, refreshments, buggy rides, portrait drawings, pictures with Santa, door prizes and a chance to win a $2,000 shopping spree...
Presidential visit (12/05/03)
The impact of President Bush's surprise visit to U.S. troops in Iraq on Thanksgiving Day will long be remembered. It will be a good memory for the many Americans who were surprised during their holiday TV viewing to learn that the president was not in Crawford, Texas, with his family...
SC teachers made decision about aides (12/05/03)
To the editor: After the recent Speak Out comments about the Scott City School District, I am compelled to reply. I feel my 28 years of teaching at Scott City will give credence to my response. The school board in November hired a football coach for the 2004-05 school year. His salary will come from that year's budget and will have no effect on the current year's expenditures nor increase them next year...
Jack Russell touched the lives of many people (12/05/03)
To the editor: Many years ago when I was playing basketball at May Greene Elementary School against Franklin Elementary School, I could not help but notice Franklin's coach. Little did I realize this man would be a big factor in my life. Our true relationship did not start until I became a teacher and coach in the Cape Girardeau School District. ...
Renters with pets may take better care of property (12/05/03)
To the editor: I have kept my mouth shut just as long as I can. What is the problem landlords have with little house dogs when they rent their property? They get a deposit. What is that for? Dogs can't knock holes in walls, break windows, cuss the neighbors, throw food on walls or scuff the floors...
Speak Out 12/05/03 (12/05/03)
Beautiful decorations I WANT to compliment the people who live on the northwest corner of West End Boulevard and Bertling Street. Every year their house looks so beautiful at Christmas time. I enjoy going by there and seeing it. It is so pretty. Ripple effect...
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