Archive for Wednesday, March 31, 2004


March 31, 2004



Missing college student target of police search

Volunteers slogged through the mud Tuesday in a search for a college student who vanished over the weekend after a baffling attack in February.

Audrey R. Seiler, 20, a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin, was last seen early Saturday near her Madison apartment. A surveillance tape from her building showed her leaving without her coat or purse, and her door was left open, police said. She also left her car behind.

Police obtained Seiler's phone records and conducted a room-by-room search of the apartment building.

"It's a very, very weird case," police spokesman Larry Kamholz said on NBC.

On Feb. 1, the Rockford, Minn., woman was walking near her apartment when someone struck her from behind and knocked her unconscious, police said. She was then moved about a block but was not sexually assaulted, and nothing was taken from her, police said.

No arrests were made, and Seiler had no idea who hit her.

New York

Doctors condemn abortion law at trials

At closely watched abortion trials across the country Tuesday, one doctor said he would risk breaking a new law banning partial-birth abortions and another said he feared he would be prosecuted for doing the abortions, which he considers safer than some other forms.

At trials in New York, San Francisco and Lincoln, Neb., lawyers for abortion-rights advocates are putting doctors on the witness stand to support their claim that the law, signed by President Bush in November, is unconstitutional.

In Lincoln, Dr. William Fitzhugh, of Richmond, Va., testified Tuesday that he would "probably continue" performing the abortions even if the law is upheld. "I'd have to take my chances," he testified.

In New York, Dr. Amos Grunebaum, a specialist in maternal fetal medicine at New York Hospital, said he had "fears of being prosecuted and having to face imprisonment" for a law so poorly written that even some miscarriages might violate it.

The law is the first substantial limitation on abortion since the Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade decision. The cases appear likely to reach the high court.

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