In other news ...October 3, 1996
Web posted at: 2:00 p.m. EDT
Girl awarded $500,000 in classmate harassment case
ANTIOCH, California (CNN) -- A 14-year-old girl who claimed school officials had ignored her complaints about a classmate harassing her was awarded $500,000 in damages.
A California jury reached its decision Tuesday, concluding that the school district should have stopped the harassment.
Tianna Ugarte said that, when she was 11 years old, a fellow sixth grader made vulgar remarks, sexually suggestive gestures and, on a daily basis, threatened to beat her up or kill her. Ugarte's parents addressed the matter in meetings and letters to the teacher, principal, the boy's family and the superintendent to no avail.
The jury ordered the district to pay 93.4 percent of the $500,000. The boy's family must pay 5.4 percent and the former principal must pay 1.2 percent.
Dial 3-1-1: Baltimore opens non-emergency hot line
BALTIMORE (CNN) -- Flooded with 911 phone calls, Baltimore has adopted a new non-emergency phone number in hopes of freeing up the emergency hot line.
The new number, 311, took effect Wednesday, making Baltimore the first major U.S. city to have such a system. The new number is reserved for urgent, non-emergency calls, like burglary or theft. Last year, Baltimore handled more than a million 911 calls, less than half of which authorities considered true emergencies.
The Federal Communications Commission is using the Baltimore experiment to help decide whether 311 service should be offered nationwide.
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