October 6, 2006 in Nation/World

Karr’s child porn charges dismissed

The Spokesman-Review
 

A judge dismissed child pornography charges Thursday against former JonBenet Ramsey murder suspect John Mark Karr after prosecutors said they didn’t have enough evidence to take the case to trial.

Sonoma County Superior Court Judge Rene Chouteau ordered Karr released immediately, bringing an end to his two-month odyssey in the U.S. criminal justice system after he was extradited from Thailand on suspicion of killing the 6-year-old beauty queen.

Karr, 41, was returned to California last month to face the five-year-old pornography case after DNA evidence cleared him of killing the girl in her Boulder, Colo., home in 1996.

San Francisco

Court upholds ban on gay marriage

A state appeals court upheld California’s ban on gay marriage Thursday.

In reversing the March 2005 ruling of a San Francisco trial judge, the 1st District Court of Appeal agreed with the state’s attorney general, who argued it is up to the Legislature, not the courts, to change the traditional definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

The justices, in their 128-page opinion, noted that California’s ban on same-sex marriage does not discriminate against gays and lesbians because of the state’s strong domestic partner law.

Gay marriage advocates said beforehand that they would appeal to the California Supreme Court if the intermediate court did not decide in their favor.

New Orleans

Post-Katrina population down

Fewer than 190,000 people are living in New Orleans a year after Hurricane Katrina, according to a door-to-door survey released Thursday.

The population of 187,525 is about 41 percent of the 454,000 people estimated to be living in Orleans Parish before the storm hit Aug. 29, 2005.

A spokeswoman for the Louisiana Recovery Authority, Natalie Wyeth, called the results “the definitive, most precise set of numbers we’ve seen.”


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