In brief: Embroiled aide to Obama resigns
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama’s adviser Van Jones has resigned amid controversy over past inflammatory statements, the White House said early today.
Van Jones, an administration official specializing in environmentally friendly “green jobs” with the White House Council on Environmental Quality, was linked to efforts suggesting a government role in the 2001 terror attacks and to derogatory comments about Republicans.
Jones issued an apology Thursday for his past statements.
The matter surfaced after news reports of a derogatory comment Jones made in the past about Republicans, and separately, of Jones’ name appearing on a petition connected to the events surrounding the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. That 2004 petition had asked for congressional hearings and other investigations into whether high-level government officers had allowed the attacks to occur.
Plane crashes into park, killing 5
OKLAHOMA CITY – A small aircraft plummeted into an Oklahoma park and burst into flames on Saturday after hitting a guide wire from a communications tower, killing all five people on board, investigators said.
The six-passenger plane was on its way to Dallas when it crashed amid heavy fog near a baseball field in Tulsa, said Oklahoma Highway Patrol Lt. George Brown.
Brown said the victims, who all died at the scene, were pilot Dr. Stephen Lester, 48; his wife Dana, 48; daughters Laura, 16, and Christina, 13; and Dr. Ken Veteto, 50. All were from Tulsa. No one on the ground was injured.
Lester’s uncle, Mike Lester, said the couple had two other children who weren’t on board the plane.
Great white sharks tagged
BOSTON – Massachusetts officials are using high-tech tags to track the movements of two great white sharks near Cape Cod – the first time the fearsome fish have ever been tagged in the Atlantic Ocean.
The electronic tag uses satellite technology to record the travels of the sharks, allowing scientists to better understand their migratory patterns.
The sharks were spotted Saturday by scientists investigating sightings off Monomoy Island in Chatham. Officials say a harpooner tagged them with help from a state shark expert.
State officials have warned area swimmers to be on the lookout for sharks this weekend, and state environmental police are patrolling the area as a precaution.