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October 1, 1996
Web posted at: 12:20 p.m. EDT

Kevorkian attorney asks judge to bar prosecutions


DETROIT (CNN) -- Physician-assisted suicide is a right as basic as being able to go to the bathroom without government interference, Dr. Jack Kevorkian's attorney, Geoffrey Fieger said. He spoke during a hearing on a lawsuit aimed at stopping prosecutions against the controversial doctor.

Kevorkian filed suit against Oakland County Prosecutor Richard Thompson in August. Thompson has vowed to continue prosecuting Kevorkian for suicides the doctor attended while Michigan's now-expired ban on physician- attended suicides was still in effect.

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Utah joins tobacco lawsuit


SALT LAKE CITY (CNN) -- Utah has become the 16th state to sue the tobacco industry to recover money spent on Medicaid bills for those suffering tobacco-related illnesses.

The lawsuit, filed Monday, also seeks to curb the industry's perceived targeting of youth, said a spokesman for the Utah attorney general. In May 1994, Mississippi became the first state to file suit against the tobacco companies to recoup Medicaid costs.

Woman who faked pregnancy charged with murder

KEOKUK, Iowa (CNN) -- A woman who faked being pregnant, to the point of wearing maternity clothes and holding a shower after the "birth" of her child, has been charged with murder in the death of the baby's actual mother.

Kimmi Hardy has been charged with murdering Theresa Lund and taking Lund's baby on August 28, the day Hardy told friends that she had given birth in her trailer home. Guests at a subsequent baby shower alerted police that Hardy's baby, actually 6 weeks old, seemed too old for a newborn.

Hardy's husband eventually told police of the plot, and is likely to be charged as an accessory.

Magazine publisher Lear dies at 73


NEW YORK (CNN) -- Frances Lear, feminist activist and former wife of TV producer Norman Lear, died Monday of breast cancer. She was 73.

Lear was considered to be the model for Norman Lear's "Maude," played by Bea Arthur in the 1970s television series. After her 1985 divorce, Lear used her hefty $112 million settlement to start Lear's, a magazine targeting women over 40. The magazine folded six years later.

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