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In brief: Official in scandal leaves GSA

Washington – The General Services Administration executive who was responsible for a lavish, $823,000 conference in Las Vegas is no longer with the GSA, the agency confirmed Thursday.

GSA spokesman Adam Elkington would not say whether Jeffrey Neely resigned or was fired from the agency that is in charge of federal buildings and supplies.

The Las Vegas conference featured a clown, a mind-reader and a rap video by an employee who made fun of the spending.

The scandal led to the resignation of GSA Administrator Martha Johnson, the firing of two top aides and the placing of nine others on administrative leave.

Purported blood of Reagan not for sale

London – A European auction house Thursday canceled the planned online sale of a vial containing dried blood residue said to be from Ronald Reagan after complaints from the late U.S. president’s family and foundation.

PFC Auctions said the seller had withdrawn the item, which was linked to the 1981 assassination attempt on Reagan, and plans instead to donate it to the former president’s foundation.

The item being donated is a five-inch glass vial that is one half-inch in diameter and has a green rubber stopper. The auction house said it clearly contains traces of dried blood. It is said to have been taken from a laboratory that tested Reagan’s blood for lead in the days after he was seriously wounded by a would-be assassin.

Crash kills man, 101, crossing street

Burbank, Calif. – Even at 101 years old, Otto Jensen showed little sign of slowing down. The former boxer from Denmark still ran a photography studio and often was seen crossing the busy street in front to get to a senior center he frequented.

On Tuesday night, while traversing four-lane Olive Avenue, Jensen was struck and killed by a car driven by 91-year-old Mary Beaumont. She was not hurt.

The accident shook Burbank, the Southern California city where Jensen was a well-known and beloved figure. He served as grand marshal of the city’s centennial parade last year.

Beaumont has been a longtime library board trustee and is a retired school teacher, said Sharon Cohen, Burbank’s library services director. “She’s a lovely woman and very intelligent. This is really a tough situation.” Cohen said.