Death of malnourished child being investigated
LANSDALE, Pa. -- A prosecutor investigating the death of a malnourished 4-year-old quadruplet said he found "almost dungeonlike" conditions at the squalid condominium where he and his siblings lived.
Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor said Saturday he had not decided whether to charge the parents.
Shawn Seymore was pronounced dead at a hospital Thursday. An autopsy found that malnutrition was a factor in the boy's death, but authorities said toxicology tests were still being analyzed.
The other quadruplets and their 13-year-old sister also were malnourished, Castor said. They were placed in the care of the county Office of Children and Youth.
Animal feces and mounds of clothing were strewn throughout the home where the family lived with five dogs and three cats, said Castor, adding that the animals appeared healthy and well fed. The township fire marshal declared the condominium uninhabitable.
Academy changes policy for sexual assault victims
AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- Rape counselors say the Air Force Academy's new policy to handle sexual assault cases may be discourage victims from reporting attacks.
Announced Friday, the policy will deny confidentiality to cadets who lodge complaints. Air Force officials say every effort will be made to keep their identities private, however.
Brig. Gen. Johnny Weida said every possible effort will be made to keep the information about attacks private, and no victim will be punished for reporting attacks. "Bottom line: we won't blame the victim," Weida said.
Ads warn of possible Roe v. Wade turnover
WASHINGTON -- A prominent abortion rights organization is launching a $3 million ad campaign that relies on foreboding commercials to warn of a day when the Supreme Court overrules its landmark 1973 ruling on the issue.
Scheduled to begin this week, the advertising sponsored by the NARAL Pro-Choice America Foundation is timed to coincide with the near-certain enactment of legislation to ban what opponents call "partial birth abortions," as well as potential retirements that could affect the balance of power at the high court.
Beginning in two weeks, the group intends to begin airing the commercials on broadcast stations in Iowa, Wisconsin and Oregon.
Rovers may reveal possibility of life on Mars
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- NASA geared up for Sunday's scheduled launch of the first of two rovers designed to advance the search for life on Mars.
A second rover is set for launch later this month, and both are scheduled to land on Mars in January.
Scientists hope the rovers will give them a better sense of the history of water on Mars, and in particular whether the cold, barren planet ever had enough liquid water to support very simple life.
Satellite images indicate large amounts of frozen water in the top layer of soil near Mars' north and south poles.-- From wire reports
"As you can tell, we're obsessed with this water thing," Orlando Figueroa, director of NASA's Mars exploration program, said Saturday. "On Earth, wherever there is water, basic nutrients and a source of energy, we have found life. So we are excited about the prospects of finding it elsewhere on another planet."