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Stories from Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Pastor in critical condition after head-on collision (02/17/04)
CHAFFEE, Mo. -- A local congregation is left praying for the recovery of its critically injured pastor and mourning the loss of his wife following a traffic accident over the weekend. Rebecca Larkin, 36, and her husband, the Rev. Darren Larkin, 39, who pastored the First Assembly of God Church in Chaffee, were en route to a church Valentine's Day dinner in Jackson when the accident occurred Friday evening on Highway 25...
Learning briefs 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Six students earn Regents' scholarships Andrea Jestus and Trae Brotherton, both of Jackson, Darren Neels, Stephen Hine and Heidi Pilsner, all of Cape Girardeau, and Rachel Schwiesow of Gordonville, have been awarded Regents' scholarships to attend Southeast Missouri State University for the 2004-2005 academic year...
Have they gone too far? (02/17/04)
I can see it now. There's a conservative family sitting around the TV with their trays all perfectly aligned. It's suppertime, and they're all eager to see the halftime show. "Isn't this asparagus just to die for?" the grandmother asks. "I like football, Daddy!" the young child exclaims as he eats his hot dog...
Kiki and Gwen - a love story (02/17/04)
It was a Saturday night that I got a wild hair and decided I wanted a fish. My friends and I went to see a movie, and after it was over everyone separated and went different directions. My best friend Chelsea and I left, intending to drive through Taco Bell and just go home...
Stressing for success (02/17/04)
If you think it's easy juggling school, homework, jobs, sports, friends and family, think again. Students cope with complex schedules and still try to have a life. SuddeniInterest in teen society? Every time I sit down to watch television or access the Internet, I see or read something about the horrible decisions teenagers make. ...
Preliminary set for man charged in infant's death (02/17/04)
BLOOMFIELD, Mo. -- A Dexter, Mo., man charged in connection with the death of his infant son may soon make an appearance in court. Jeremy Whittemore is scheduled to go before Judge Joe Z. Satterfield for a preliminary hearing Thursday at 1:30 p.m. Whittemore stands accused of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the death of his son, infant Jacob Whittemore, on Dec. ...
Two Arkansas men in custody on drug charge (02/17/04)
HAYTI, Mo. -- Two men are in custody after attempting to steal anhydrous ammonia in Pemiscot County, authorities report. According to reports, during the early morning hours Saturday, Pemiscot County deputies and the Bootheel Drug Task Force arrested Gary Dane Cunningham 29, and Michael Christopher Markum, 23, of Paragould, Ark. ...
Illinois man killed; Sikeston residents seriously injured (02/17/04)
A Decatur, Ill., man was killed in an accident in Bollinger County Monday, and five Sikeston residents sustained serious injuries in a New Madrid County accident that occurred Sunday. Wayne Sandelin, 39, of Decatur was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Jessie Bell, 24, of Cobden, Ill. Bell sustained minor injuries in the 4 a.m. accident at the Highway 51/72 junction in Patton, Mo...
Payday loans - High demand, high interest (02/17/04)
The payday loan industry walks the line between helping and taking advantage of people who live from paycheck to paycheck. Which side of that line the lending businesses are on depends on one's point of view. Small-loan companies will give people money when perhaps nobody else will. When people run out of credit and have nowhere to turn, the payday lenders are sometimes the last place they can go to borrow a small amount of money...
Area sees growth in sales tax revenue (02/17/04)
Local government officials wonder if recent growth in sales tax revenue is a sign of an improving economy that will help balance their budgets or just temporary relief that still will leave them hampered with tight funding. Cape Girardeau County government took in nearly $5.49 million last year from its half-cent sales tax, up 2.8 percent from the 2002 calendar year. ...
Family will stop offering reward for missing boy (02/17/04)
HILLSBORO, Mo. -- The family of a missing Richwoods boy said Monday they'll stop offering a $75,000 reward for his recovery at midnight today in an effort to encourage anyone with information to come forward immediately. Shawn Hornbeck, 11, disappeared on Oct. 6, 2002, while riding his bike near his home in rural Washington County...
Legislation seeks to tighten state kidnapping law (02/17/04)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- State lawmakers filed legislation Monday to tighten the state's kidnapping law following an incident last week in which a 1-month old boy was taken from his rural western Missouri home and found hours later in Kansas City. Although a suspect is in custody, Benton County prosecutor Karen Woodley has said she cannot charge the woman with kidnapping under Missouri's current law...
Husband charged in wife's beating death (02/17/04)
FREDERICKTOWN, Mo. -- A husband allegedly beat his wife to death during a custody dispute Sunday, police said. James Boekemier, 31, of Fredericktown was arguing with his wife Andrea, 26, over custody of their 4-year-old and 2-year-old children. Witnesses told police the mother was beaten as she called her mother-in-law for help. ...
Group - St. Louis airport needs millions in revenue (02/17/04)
ST. LOUIS -- Lambert Airport will need to raise $35 million to $50 million in revenue annually to be a competitive, growing airport after a runway expansion project opens, said a group that studied the airport's future. The group was formed last August to determine what the airport could do to attract and retain flights and jobs...
Task force tackling auto thefts making its mark (02/17/04)
ST. LOUIS -- A task force commissioned last summer to slow the city's number of auto thefts appears to be making its mark, curbing the crime's frequency over the final three months of 2003, police said. Records show that a vehicle was stolen in St. ...
Missing Missouri girl, 15, found at Arkansas motel (02/17/04)
NIANGUA, Mo. -- A southwest Missouri girl missing since Thursday was found Sunday at a motel in Arkansas, Laclede County Sheriff Richard Wrinkle said. She and a 19-year-old man who was with her, described as a former boyfriend, were taken into custody Sunday evening after Wrinkle called police in Conway, Ark. ...
Virtual reality system trains crews to respond to disasters (02/17/04)
ROLLA, Mo. -- The University of Missouri-Rolla is working on a virtual-reality training system that may provide an affordable way to teach emergency workers how to respond to chemical-weapon disasters. "You can't just release real chemicals into the environment and run a test -- they're toxic," said Michael Hilgers, associate professor of Computer Science and director of the University of Missouri-Rolla lab that's designing the system, known as First Responder Simulation and Training Environment, or FiRSTE.. ...
Education rally draws thousands to Capitol (02/17/04)
Students, teachers, parents and principals converged on the Capitol Monday to chastise government leaders for cuts to public school funding and to ask for more money for their schools. About 2,000 rally participants chanted "S-O-S, Save Our Schools" and raised homemade banners urging elected officials to make children their priority. ...
Nation briefs 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Sharon survives confidence votes over settlements JERUSALEM -- Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon survived no confidence motions Monday, even though some legislative allies abstained amid deep divisions over his plans to evacuate some Jewish settlements. ...
In primary, when to say goodbye is tougher than how to say it (02/17/04)
WASHINGTON -- Chin up, ego beaten down, any bitterness squashed deep inside, a flash of humor helps: As presidential primary candidates fall away, one by one, there's an etiquette and timing to bowing out gracefully. It's not always observed, of course...
Kerry leading in Wisconsin; Dean campaign chair out (02/17/04)
WAUSAU, Wis. -- A confident John Kerry launched a full-throttle attack on President Bush's economic policies, mostly ignoring his Democratic rivals on the eve of the Wisconsin primary. Howard Dean's campaign shed another top manager and John Edwards vowed to press on no matter how he fares today...
Gay weddings go on in San Francisco (02/17/04)
SAN FRANCISCO -- Hundreds of gay men and lesbians lined up outside city hall in heavy rain Monday, hoping to join more than 1,700 other same-sex couples who had exchanged vows with the city's blessing before a court decides whether to halt the unprecedented wedding march...
Panel promises states $2.3 billion to improve election process (02/17/04)
WASHINGTON -- States can expect by mid-May to get a long-awaited $2.3 billion in federal help to buy new voting-booth equipment and make other election improvements, the head of an electoral reform commission promised Monday. Still, millions of voters again will be using the much maligned punch cards in this fall's presidential balloting. Many of the improvements, including plans for statewide computerized voter registration data, aren't expected to be in place before 2006...
Alaska's hard-core homeless cope with deep subzero temperatures (02/17/04)
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Ron Feldhouse draws the line at 45 degrees below zero. Then it's time to sleep indoors. Otherwise, he sets up camp in the woods outside Fairbanks, where winter temperatures can hover around 20 below zero or colder for weeks at a stretch, cold enough to be fatal for the unprepared...
Head of Pakistan nuke program paid for loyalty (02/17/04)
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Abdul Qadeer Khan spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy loyalty -- writing checks for anything from seminars to friends' weddings -- in a patronage scheme that allowed him to elude suspicion as head of the world's most successful nuclear black market, senior scientists and government officials told The Associated Press on Monday...
Death of teen in Australia sparks riots (02/17/04)
SYDNEY, Australia -- Mainly Aboriginal rioters set fire to a train station and pelted police with gas bombs Monday during a nine-hour street battle that began after a teenager died, allegedly while being chased by officers. The overnight rioting in the Redfern neighborhood, an Aboriginal ghetto of Australia's most populous city, left 40 officers injured and highlighted continuing tensions between authorities and the nation's original inhabitants...
Bremer will block push for Islamic law in Iraq (02/17/04)
BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Iraq's U.S. administrator suggested Monday he would block any move by Iraqi leaders to make Islamic law the backbone of an interim constitution, which women's groups fear could threaten their rights. Roadside bombs killed two more American soldiers...
Iranian reformer rejected for ballot 4 times (02/17/04)
MASHHAD, Iran -- Four times he's submitted his name as a candidate for Iran's parliament. Four times the watchdogs of the Islamic establishment have said no. Each snub changed Mohammed Sadegh Javadihesari -- from surprised to stubborn to angry. After the latest rejection -- being included among more than 2,500 reformers disqualified from Friday's ballot -- the teacher and activist traveled 540 miles to the capital, Tehran, to join a sit-in protest with lawmakers and become a spokesman for the drive to boycott the elections.. ...
World briefs 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Guyana's prime minister calls for hit squad probe GEORGETOWN, Guyana -- Guyana's prime minister has called for an independent commission to investigate allegations that the government ran a hit squad blamed for more than 40 killings in the past year. ...
Former Michelin man reveals secrets of France's food guide (02/17/04)
PARIS -- Talk about spilling the beans! Michelin's Red Guide, France's famed yardstick of where to eat, is feeling the sting of indiscretions from one of its former restaurant inspectors who is breaking the secrecy on how the gastronome's bible awards its coveted ratings...
India, Pakistan begin peace talks to settle old disputes (02/17/04)
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Nuclear-armed rivals India and Pakistan began historic meetings Monday aimed at preparing for a sustained peace dialogue on Kashmir and other disputes that have divided the neighbors for decades. Pakistan is eager to show quick progress during the three days of talks, which also are likely to cover confidence-building measures in the nuclear field to avoid an accident -- especially considering admissions of leaks of nuclear technology by the father of Pakistan's nuclear program.. ...
Haiti's Aristide seems built to survive latest struggle (02/17/04)
He is no stranger to struggle. Jean-Bertrand Aristide was born into poverty, survived several attempts on his life as a priest espousing revolt and was ousted in a coup within months of becoming Haiti's first freely elected leader. Now, facing an uprising that has killed more than 50 people and destabilized the Caribbean country, the embattled leader refuses to be sidelined a second time...
Panthers tie state 3-point record (02/17/04)
After losing four of its last five games, the Meadow Heights' boys basketball team finally found its touch, torching Zalma 110-67 in a make-up game at home. Meadow Heights hit 24 3-point field goals in the game to tie a state record set by Scott City in 1997...
Jackson bids a victorious farewell at home (02/17/04)
Jackson's girls basketball team had its 3-point shot going Monday night and withstood hot-shooting Farmington for a 60-48 home victory on senior night. Jackson honored its six senior players before the game and promptly opened with a 9-2 run. The Indians (22-3) led 12-4 at one point and held a 12-6 lead after one quarter. Farmington managed only one field goal in the quarter...
Griffin sure to miss final two home games (02/17/04)
As Southeast Missouri State University's Indians prepare for their final two home games of the season this week, senior center Brandon Griffin has virtually been ruled out of both contests. Griffin suffered a severely sprained ankle in the opening minutes of Saturday's 90-86 loss at Tennessee State...
Daly shows up in winner's circle when least expected (02/17/04)
SAN DIEGO -- John Daly always seems to show up when no one expects him. Daly resurrected his career again Sunday in the Buick Invitational, winning a full-field tournament on U.S. soil for the first time in 10 years and capturing his first PGA Tour event since the 1995 British Open...
Late fluke goal gives Blues two-game winning streak (02/17/04)
ST. LOUIS -- A fluke goal from checking forward Jamal Mayers gave the St. Louis Blues consecutive victories for the first time in almost two months. "The hockey gods were nice to us," Mayers said after his bad-angle shot deflected in off goalie Brian Boucher's skate with four minutes left in a 4-2 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Monday...
Yanks add A-Rod to stockpile (02/17/04)
NEW YORK -- Alex Rodriguez is coming back to New York, the city he left when he was 4, and moving onto the biggest stage in town -- Yankee Stadium. Baseball's highest-paid player, and perhaps its most talented, was finally and officially dealt to the New York Yankees from Texas on Monday after commissioner Bud Selig approved the record-setting swap...
The Joneses thumb the Red Sox (02/17/04)
Red Sox owner John Henry just emerged from an office at Fenway Park and saw his shadow. That should be good for at least six more months of winter in New England. "Beating the Yankees is what people live for," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman crowed Monday, "and it's what they're going to continue to do."...
Sports briefs 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Baseball Oakland Athletics executive Paul DePodesta was hired Monday as general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The hiring was the first move made by new owner Frank McCourt, who bought the team Friday from News Corp. ...
Breaking up is hard -- even for Ken and Barbie (02/17/04)
Barbie and Ken are breaking up, much to the surprise of children and parents who thought they were the perfect plastic couple. After 43 years, they're going their separate ways because, says Mattel marketing vice president Russell Arons, Barbie and Ken "feel it's time to spend some quality time apart." Barbie met Ken on the set of a TV commercial in 1961. They had been inseparable since then...
Illinois hopes rivers can help plug state's job leak in 2004 (02/17/04)
PEORIA, Ill. -- Even supporters concede that the notion of ports in corn-covered Illinois doesn't ring quite right. "It's like the Port of Tulsa. People don't even realize there's water there, but it's a big operation," said Don Miller Jr., president of The Port Group LLC, an Indiana-based firm that has developed ports in Chicago and owns land in the state's newest port district near Peoria...
Yukos shareholders offer stock for Khodorkovsky return (02/17/04)
MOSCOW -- A group of shareholders that control Russia's largest oil company, Yukos, have offered their stock to the government in exchange for the release of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Yukos' former chief. Leonid Nevzlin said that he and other core shareholders of Group Menatep -- a holding company -- had offered to turn over their stake in Yukos to the government if it agrees to let Khodorkovsky out of jail...
Attorneys face high-stakes decision of putting Stewart on stand (02/17/04)
NEW YORK -- With the government close to resting its case against Martha Stewart, attorneys planning her defense are faced with an excruciating decision: Should they put her on the witness stand? Lawyers not involved in the stock-fraud trial say having Stewart testify and opening her to cross-examination would be an enormous gamble, and her chief attorney says he won't decide until he sees the government's full case. Prosecutors expect to rest Thursday...
Jessy Davis (02/17/04)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- Jessy K. Davis, 17, of Perryville died Sunday, Feb. 15, 2004, at his home. He was born Feb. 3, 1987, in St. Louis, son of Tammy A. Williams Davis. Davis was a junior at Perryville High School, where he played junior varsity and varsity football...
William Kutz (02/17/04)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- William H. Kutz, 85, of Perryville died Monday, Feb. 16, 2004, at Perry County Nursing Home. He was born Dec. 26, 1918, in Perry County, son of Henry and Rosa Dosenbach Kutz. He and Lorine M. Buchheit were married Feb. 16, 1946. Kutz had been a laborer for Sansone Concrete Co. and also farmed. He was a member of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, American Legion Post 133, and VFW Post 4282...
William Crowe (02/17/04)
PERKINS, Mo. -- William R. "Bill" Crowe, 75, of Grand Blanc, Mich., died Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2004, at his home. He was born Oct. 17, 1928, in Perkins, son of George and Ella Crowe. He and Bonnie Seabaugh were married Feb. 28, 1953, at Chaffee, Mo. Crowe had lived in the Flint, Mich., area since 1953. He retired as an electrician with Chevrolet Manufacturing in 1988. He was a member of UAW Local 659...
Gary Lincoln (02/17/04)
MARBLE HILL, Mo. -- Gary Eldon Lincoln, 57, of Marble Hill died Sunday, Feb. 15, 2004, at Life Care Centers of Cape Girardeau. He was born July 5, 1946, at Bessville, Mo., son of Webster Claude and Lena Robinson Lincoln. Lincoln had worked at a shoe factory and as a utility worker at Rubbermaid...
Velda Winkler (02/17/04)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- Velda M. Winkler, 74, of Perryville died Saturday, Feb. 14, 2004, at Perry County Memorial Hospital. She was born Jan. 18, 1930, in Perry County, daughter of Clarence T. and Olivia M. Chavaux Pecaut. She and Linus L. "Buddy" Winkler were married April 19, 1952, in Perryville...
Margaret James (02/17/04)
PORTAGEVILLE, Mo. -- Margaret James, 83, of Portageville died Sunday, Feb. 15, 2004, at her home. She was born Dec. 28, 1920, at Deering, Mo., daughter of William M. and Lular Belle Foster Barksdale. She and Charles A. "Charlie" James were married Feb. 19, 1942, in Hayti, Mo. He died Jan. 8, 1995...
Evelyn Johnson (02/17/04)
Evelyn S. Johnson, 85, of Cape Girardeau died Monday, Feb. 16, 2004, at Southeast Missouri Hospital. She was born Feb. 5, 1919, at Poplar Bluff, Mo., daughter of Lee Roy and Myrtie Stuart Smith. She and Glenn Johnson were married Nov. 24, 1950, in Piggott, Ark. He died Jan. 12, 1973...
Cape/Jackson police reports 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Cape Girardeau The following items were released by the Cape Girardeau Police Department. Arrests do not imply guilt. Summonses Charles Lynn Garmon, 47, of 412 S. Ellis St., Cape Girardeau, and Jeremiah Reddin, 17, of 925 William St., Cape Girardeau, were issued summonses for assault Sunday...
Cape fire report 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
Cape Girardeau Firefighters responded to the following calls Sunday: At 7:15 p.m., a medical assist at 1632 W. End Blvd. At 7:37 p.m., a medical assist at 3265 William. At 9:46 p.m., a medical assist at 1744 Northwood. Firefighters responded to the following calls Monday At 12:34 p.m., a medical assist at 409 Albert...
Out of the past 2/17/04 (02/17/04)
10 years ago: Feb. 17, 1994 Five members of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity at Southeast Missouri State University have been charged with involuntary manslaughter in hazing death of man pledging fraternity; Michael Davis, 25, of St. Louis, died at St. Francis Hospital Tuesday of blunt force trauma to head...
School networking (02/17/04)
The extent to which America has become dependent on computers and digital networks is truly amazing. Thanks to funding from a federal tax on telephone bills, the Cape Girardeau School District will soon have a new network provided by Charter Communications. The new network will speed up electronic communications. The additional annual cost will be absorbed in part by federal subsidies...
Plane devices may not always work (02/17/04)
To the editor: In response to the article "Plane crash blamed on contaminated fuel system" and the statement made by Bruce Loy, manager of the Cape Girardeau Regional Airport, that a plane's fuel system should be drained before the first flight of each day and after refueling to avoid accumulating water or sediment:...
Names create identity confusion (02/17/04)
To the editor: Either Southeast Missouri State University or Southwest Missouri State University needs to change its name. SEMO faculty who regularly present papers at national professional meetings are often introduced as representing "Southwest Missouri State University." The mistake frequently extends to attendee name tags and even published proceedings of paper presentations. ...
Setting the record straight (02/17/04)
To the editor: As a concerned resident of this community and having my parents employed by the city and the school district, I frequently read Speak Out to see what is being said about their job areas. I have found that certain residents of this community do not have all the facts in relation to the areas of their complaints...
Speak Out 02/17/04 (02/17/04)
A big risk TO THE woman who says to do more research before getting your children vaccinated: How would you like it if your child came down with polio? The disease has been completely eliminated because of the vaccine. Student perspective A STUDENT response to your headline that "Students benefit from tougher homework policy" might be that such a claim depends on whether or not you are an already overburdened student...
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