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Archive for Thursday, March 31, 2005

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March 31, 2005

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Boston

Joan Kennedy suffers broken shoulder

Joan Kennedy, the former wife of Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, is in the hospital recuperating from a concussion and a broken shoulder after a passer-by found her lying in a street, according to her son.

Kennedy, 68, was taken to Tufts New England Medical Center about 3 a.m. Tuesday, said Rep. Patrick Kennedy, D-R.I.

"We're indebted to some anonymous pedestrian who found her and picked her up and got her help," he told the Boston Herald.

Details of exactly what happened and how she ended up in the street were unclear. There was no police report on the incident. Joan Kennedy, who divides her time between Cape Cod and a Boston condominium, has struggled with alcoholism. She spent time in a number of rehabilitation programs following arrests for drunken driving.

Los Angeles

Preserved fetus stolen from museum exhibit

Police are searching for two women who they believe made off with a preserved 13-week-old fetus from an exhibit at the California Science Center.

The fetus, its tissues infused with polymers in a process called plastination to prevent decay indefinitely, was part of a traveling display, "Body Worlds 2: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies."

A surveillance camera captured the women removing the fetus from an unlocked display case on the third floor early Saturday during the round-the-clock closing weekend of the exhibit, police Detective Jimmy Render said.

Other people were inside the room at the time but they may not have been aware of the theft, he said.

The theft was the first ever involving "Body Worlds" displays, which have been seen by millions of people worldwide.

Washington, D.C.

Census report tallies time spent commuting

To the list of extreme sports, add extreme commuting: those who travel 90 minutes or more on the trek to work.

Nationally, only 2 percent of workers log those kind of one-way commuting times, but their numbers are growing, according to a 2003 Census Bureau survey released Wednesday.

In New York City and Baltimore, 5.6 percent of commuters spent 90 minutes or more on the trip into work; elsewhere, 5 percent of commuters in Riverside, Calif., and 3 percent of commuters in Philadelphia and Los Angeles spent an hour-and-a-half on the one-way commute.

The average one-way commute took 24.3 minutes in 2003, two minutes more than it took in 1990, according to the survey, which included all 50 states and cities with populations of 250,000 or more.

On average, workers in New York City spent the longest traveling to work -- 38 minutes. Chicago commuters came in second at 33 minutes. Commuters in Newark, N.J., Riverside, Calif., and Philadelphia rounded out the top five cities, with workers in each needing about 30 minutes.

Workers in Tulsa, Okla., Wichita, Kan., and Corpus Christi, Texas, had the shortest commutes, averaging less than 17 minutes.

MIlwaukee

White police officers win discrimination suit

A federal jury found that Milwaukee's former police chief discriminated against 17 white men by promoting women and minorities ahead of them.

The jury, which reached its verdict Tuesday, will return next week to decide how much the plaintiffs should get in damages.

The 17 are seeking more than $5 million and an immediate promotion to captain if applicable. Two are now captains, and two others are retired.

During the three-week trial, the plaintiffs claimed that former Police Chief Arthur Jones, who is black, discriminated by repeatedly promoting women and minorities to captain ahead of better-qualified white men.

Assistant City Atty. Miriam Horwitz countered that Milwaukee's police chiefs have long had wide latitude in appointing captains and said 21 of the 41 captains Jones named were white men.

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