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Archive for Sunday, January 27, 2002

Nation Briefs

January 27, 2002

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Washington: Senate gives approval to pick for Peace Corps

The Peace Corps is getting a new director: Gaddi Vasquez, 46, a former supervisor of Orange County, Calif.

The Senate unanimously confirmed Vasquez without a roll-call vote Friday. The action came amid Bush administration complaints that the Democrat-controlled Senate has been dragging its feet on the president's appointees.

Vasquez's lack of international experience and strong opposition from a group of former corps volunteers were highlighted in a contentious confirmation hearing last fall.

South Carolina: Police: Sailor made porn using 16-year-old girl

A Navy petty officer is accused of making pornographic home videos with a 16-year-old girl and another sailor, police said.

Jessie Oldfield, 20, is charged with first-degree sexual exploitation of a minor, according to court papers. He is a student at the Charleston Naval Weapons Station's nuclear power training unit.

Oldfield was being detained on $100,000 bail.

The other sailor in the video is on active duty in another state, authorities said.

According to an arrest affidavit, Oldfield acted as video producer. Police said the girl appeared intoxicated.

A tape was discovered by the girl's father after she left it in his video camera, police said. Her parents turned over the tapes to police.

Massachusetts: Black studies professor trades Ivy League jobs

A prominent black studies professor at Harvard University who has raised questions about the school president's commitment to affirmative action is leaving for Princeton.

K. Anthony Appiah submitted his resignation Friday, a Harvard spokesman said.

Appiah, 47, was one of several professors in the school's Afro-American studies department reportedly at odds with new Harvard University president Lawrence Summers.

But in a statement released by Harvard, Appiah said he was not leaving because of any rift with Summers.

"My decision to leave is entirely positive: it reflects the personal and intellectual attractions of Princeton at this stage of my career," Appiah said.

Illinois: Purse missing 42 years makes it back to owner

When her purse was stolen in a restaurant in 1960, Audrey Wheeler thought she had lost her most precious memories the photograph of her smiling father, pictures of nieces and nephews now grown and a copy of the 23rd Psalm that was handed out at her father's funeral.

A demolition crew found the purse in a wall of the restaurant last year and turned it over to Oak Park Police. The officer assigned the case wouldn't give up his attempt to find the owner, calling every Audrey Wheeler in the Chicago area.

Now, Wheeler has her purse back.

Only $67.02 in cash her weekly take-home pay back in 1960 was missing.

"The hell with the money," said Wheeler, 74. "The pictures are what's important."

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