Archive for Saturday, September 8, 2001

Nation briefs

September 8, 2001

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DETROIT

Oldsmobile's end to come in 2004

General Motors Corp. said Friday that it would end production of the Oldsmobile line with the 2004 model year, though production of the Intrigue and Aurora will end sooner. The company said the line has not been profitable.

Oldsmobile is the oldest automotive brand name in U.S. history, begun in 1897 when Ransom E. Olds started the Olds Motor Vehicle Co. in Lansing. In 1977, it became the first GM division outside Chevrolet to sell more than 1 million cars.

But Olds sales have been poor. Through August, they were down 14.5 percent from the first eight months of 2000.

NEW YORK

8-, 9-year-olds charged in 4-year-old's stabbing

An 8-year-old boy was charged with criminally negligent homicide Friday for allegedly stabbing to death a 4-year-old neighbor who police say had been bullied for more than a year.

The suspect's 9-year-old brother was charged with assault for his role in the attack, police said. Both were charged as juveniles.

Police said the 8-year-old stabbed Emanuel Barima in the neck piercing his jugular vein Wednesday as the boy played with his sister in the hall outside their Bronx apartment. Tests were being done to determine whether a set of house keys or a pen was the murder weapon.

The brothers are among the youngest people ever charged in the nation in a slaying.

Alabama

Chicagoan breaks barrier in greek system

A mixed-race member of a traditionally white sorority says she broke the color barrier in the University of Alabama's greek system last year, a milestone that escaped school officials.

Christina Houston said her father is black and she joined all-white Gamma Phi Beta in November 2000 as a freshman. Her mother is white.

"I never saw it as an issue of black rush or white rush; it was just rush," Houston said in a story published Friday in both The Crimson White, the student newspaper, and The Tuscaloosa News.

HOUSTON

Crime writer marks 49th day in jail

A novice crime writer jailed for refusing to turn over her notes about a murder to a federal grand jury has spent more time behind bars than any journalist in the United States, according to a journalism organization.

Vanessa Leggett, 33, spent her 49th day in a Houston federal detention center Friday. She was found in contempt of court on July 20 and could be jailed for up to 18 months.

The Reporters' Committee for Freedom of the Press said the previous record was 46 days when a Los Angeles Herald-Examiner reporter refused to disclose source material related to the Charles Manson trial in 1972.

Texas

Gramm resignation speculation rising

Texas Gov. Rick Perry continued to hold out hope Friday that U.S. Sen. Phil Gramm would quit early to allow Perry to appoint a replacement and to head off a potentially brutal and costly Republican primary.

Perry said the senator, who announced Tuesday that he would not seek re-election, "is still going through a thought process of whether or not he would resign early."

But a spokesman for Gramm said the governor was wrong.

"No. Senator Gramm is not going through any thought process about resigning," said spokesman Larry Neal in Washington.

Speculation points to Rep. Henry Bonilla, R-Tex., as a fitting replacement for Gramm. Many Texas Republicans believe having a Hispanic at the top of the GOP ticket next year would help all Republican candidates attract the growing Hispanic vote.

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