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Nation in brief: Sotomayor gains Republican votes

Thu., Aug. 6, 2009, midnight

Washington – Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor won more GOP support in her drive toward near-certain Senate confirmation today as the first Hispanic justice.

Republican Sens. Kit Bond of Missouri and Judd Gregg of New Hampshire broke with their party to announce they’d support President Barack Obama’s nominee.

“There’s been no significant finding against her, there’s been no public uprising against her,” said Bond, who is retiring. “I will support her; I’ll be proud for her, the community she represents and the American dream she shows is possible.”

Police chief resigns in surprise move

Los Angeles – William Bratton on Wednesday announced his plan to resign as chief of the Los Angeles Police Department to take over as head of a private security company.

Bratton, who has dramatically reshaped the department and pushed down crime rates since taking over in 2002, is expected to step down at the end of October. His decision took the city’s political and police leadership by surprise.

Bratton, 61, will become the chief executive of a newly formed subsidiary of Altegrity, a company with a significant presence in the secretive industry that provides private businesses and government agencies with intelligence-gathering and other investigative services.

Train driving stunt leading to charges

Mineola, N.Y. – A Long Island Rail Road engineer and the passenger he allegedly let drive a train carrying almost 400 riders during rush hour at speeds of up to 80 mph are facing reckless endangerment charges. The engineer has also been charged with official misconduct.

Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced the charges Wednesday against William Kutsch of East Setauket and engineer Ronald Cabrera of Centereach.

Rice’s office started investigating after receiving reports that Kutsch, 47, had been in the control cabin of the Queens-bound train on the morning of July 2.

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