November 26, 2005 in Nation/World

Girl, father die in fall through ice

Compiled from wire reports The Spokesman-Review

Cedar Grove, Wis. An ice-skating trip at a small pond ended tragically Friday when a young girl fell through the ice and her father plunged in trying to save her. Authorities searching with divers and boats recovered their bodies.

The 44-year-old man and his two daughters, ages 9 and 6, were skating on the football-field-size pond Friday morning when the older girl fell through the ice, Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Sgt. Doug Tuttle said.

The father fell in while apparently trying to rescue her. The 6-year-old then ran to a nearby home and someone called 911. The victims’ names were not immediately released.

The pond in Cedar Grove, about 40 miles north of Milwaukee, is 8 to 10 feet deep and the ice was less than 3 inches thick.

Thieves targeting Baltimore’s light poles

Baltimore City streets in Baltimore are getting darker because thieves, some disguised as utility crews, are stealing 30-foot light poles, authorities said.

About 130 aluminum light poles have vanished this fall from locations across the city, despite the difficulty of carting off the 250-pound objects.

The culprits have even dressed up as utility crews and placed orange traffic cones around the poles they are about to take down to avoid making motorists suspicious. Police have no suspects in the thefts.

Police say the thieves could be stealing the poles, which cost the city $750 each, to sell as scrap metal.

“They steal everything here in Baltimore,” said Lynn Smith, manager at Modern Junk & Salvage Co. “Nothing’s too kooky to me anymore.”

$60.9 million awarded over negligence in birth

Hialeah, Fla. A federal judge has awarded $60.9 million to a couple whose son suffered severe brain damage when he was born in a Navy hospital two years ago.

The award is believed to be the largest ever under the Federal Tort Claims Act, which allows private citizens to sue the federal government for the negligent conduct of its employees.

Raiza Bravo and Oscar Rodriguez, a Navy serviceman, claimed doctors waited too long to perform a Caesarean section to deliver their son at the Mayport Naval Station obstetric clinic.

Kevin, now 2, cannot see, speak or swallow. His muscles are rigid, and he cannot move his arms or legs. He cannot respond to any stimulus except pain, and doctors say he will not live past 21.

Dying black bear bites hunter who shot it

Harrisburg, Pa. A black bear bit and clawed a hunter who had just shot it four times.

Samuel H. Beauchamp, 47, said he was approaching the downed 320-pound bear in Rothrock State Forest in central Pennsylvania on Monday, the first day of bear-hunting season, when it came after him.

Beauchamp, of Newville, had just shot the bear with a .444-caliber rifle and was within 15 feet of it. He turned to run, but the bear put a claw around his hip and bit him twice, once in each thigh, before dying.

“The bear wasn’t attacking 100 percent. I mean really, it was dead on its feet when it came up. If it would have been 100 percent I wouldn’t have been standing there,” Beauchamp said Friday.

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