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Archive for Tuesday, February 12, 2002

Nation Briefs

February 12, 2002

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Pennsylvania: Archives staffer charged with theft

An employee of the National Archives was charged Monday with stealing hundreds of historical items.

Many of the items were sold and have not been recovered, U.S. Atty. Patrick L. Meehan said.

Shawn Aubitz, 45, was charged with one count of theft by a government employee for allegedly taking items between 1996 and 1999. The National Archives said it believes it is the first time that an employee has been charged with stealing historical documents.

Aubitz worked in the agency's downtown Philadelphia office, which maintains records from federal agencies and courts in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.

If convicted, Aubitz faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

WASHINGTON, D.C.: Survey finds use of Ecstasy rising

A survey of teen-agers found that drug use remained steady last year with one glaring exception a rise in use of Ecstasy an anti-drug organization said Monday.

The Partnership For a Drug-Free America said teen Ecstasy use rose 20 percent last year and has increased 71 percent since 1999.

The group unveiled an advertising campaign to warn teens and parents of the dangers of drug use. Many of the ads feature the parents of Danielle Heird, a 21-year-old Las Vegas woman who died after taking Ecstasy in 2000.

John Walters, who directs the White House drug policy office, said anti-drug officials are trying to counter an impression among teens that Ecstasy is harmless. Ecstasy is believed to cause brain damage.

Ecstasy is a synthetic drug considered part hallucinogen and part amphetamine. It became popular over the past decade at dance parties known as raves.

New York City: University official quits amid reports of affair

The president of Rockefeller University has resigned, citing health concerns amid reports of an inappropriate encounter with a female student.

Levine is an acclaimed biologist who helped reinvigorate the small, 101-year-old research institution and graduate school when he was named in 1998. He will stay on as a faculty member and director of a microbiology laboratory, but he will take some time off, The New York Times reported Monday.

The Times, citing unidentified sources close to Levine, said his voluntary departure follows the encounter with the student last month in a campus lounge after both had too much to drink. Levine told the sources the encounter was inappropriate and the student called it consensual, the newspaper said.

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