Hamburg tabbed to improve FDA

President Barack Obama has decided to select former New York City health commissioner Margaret Hamburg to head the Food and Drug Administration, turning to a one-time Clinton administration official to help right the beleaguered regulatory agency, a source briefed on the choice said Wednesday.

Hamburg, 53, a physician who has worked extensively on bio-terrorism issues, is now a senior scientist at the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a Washington-based foundation focused on threats from nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.

Although less experienced as a regulator, Hamburg has extensive government experience. She served as health commissioner in New York for six years in the 1990s before becoming assistant secretary for planning and evaluation at President Bill Clinton’s Department of Health and Human Services.

Samson, Ala.

Alabama gunman held job grudges

The gunman who killed 10 people and committed suicide in a rampage across the Alabama countryside had struggled to keep a job and left behind lists of employers and co-workers he believed had wronged him, authorities said Wednesday.

The lists found in Michael McLendon’s home included a metals plant that had forced him to resign years ago and where he ended up killing himself Tuesday to end the rampage, District Attorney Gary McAliley said. Also on the list were a sausage factory from which he suddenly quit last week and a poultry plant that suspended his mother, McAliley said.

The pages torn from a spiral notebook included names of co-workers who he felt had wronged him, including one who reported him for not wearing ear plugs, another who made him clean a meat grinder and a supervisor who didn’t like the way he cut pork chops, McAliley said.

“We found a list of people he worked with, people who had done him wrong,” said McAliley.

Investigators offered no immediate explanation for why McLendon targeted relatives and others who weren’t on the list as he fired more than 200 rounds in a roughly 20-mile trail of carnage across two counties.

Omaha, Neb.

Dozens of new cars disappear from lot

Scores of new cars vanished from a western Nebraska car dealership and a prosecutor said Wednesday that some had turned up in other states and warrants had been issued for three missing executives.

The 81 Fords and Toyotas taken from Legacy Auto Sales in Scottsbluff were valued at about $2.5 million.

The Fords were put on transporter trucks and taken away Saturday and the Toyotas were shipped out late Monday, John Childress, Scotts Bluff County’s chief deputy county attorney, said Wednesday.

Childress said arrest warrants had been issued for owner Allen Patch, controller Rachel Fait and general manager Rick Covello, who are wanted on suspicion of theft.

Covello called Scottsbluff police on Wednesday and said he would meet with investigators today, Capt. Kevin Spencer said. The whereabouts of Patch and Fait remained unknown, Spencer said.

From wire reports

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