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News Briefs

December 24, 1995
Web posted at: 11:05 p.m. EST

Egyptian woman arrives to give brother bone marrow

Astefanous NEW YORK (CNN) -- A local cab driver's sister arrived in the United States Sunday from Egypt to give him some of her bone marrow.

The woman was initially denied entrance to the United States for the transplant operation, but Sen. Alfonse D'amato and Rep. Gary Ackerman helped her obtain a visa last week.

Mauris Astefanous is a cab driver who immigrated from Egypt and lives in Queens. He suffers from leukemia, and his doctor said he would die without a bone marrow transplant. U.S. embassy officials in Egypt had denied his sister, Wedad, entry saying she didn't have the proper medical documents.

Man arrested for possession of poison commits suicide

LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas (CNN) -- A man who was being held on a biological weapons charge killed himself Saturday in his jail cell.

Thomas Lewis Lavy was pronounced dead at 7 a.m. Sunday at University Hospital after hanging himself sometime overnight, said his attorney.

He was arrested Saturday on his farm in northern Arkansas for possession of a lethal extract of the castor bean plant. Lavy had been indicted in Alaska on a federal charge of possession of a toxic substance, ricin, with intent to use it as a weapon.

Ricin is one of the most toxic substances in the world, ranking third behind only plutonium and the botulism toxin, according the FBI.


Two suspects arrested in Maryland mall shooting

SALISBURY, Maryland -- Two suspects were arrested Sunday in connection with a fatal shooting at a crowded shopping mall Saturday night.

Gabriel Cannon, 23, and Terrance Teagle, 19, were arrested in Norfolk, Virginia. Police said they will be charged with first degree murder.

Police said the shooting appears to be an act of retaliation because Cannon and the victim, Roy Davis, 21, were involved in a fight earlier this year. Two other men were wounded in the gunfire, which caused hundreds of holiday shoppers to flee in panic.

State police helicopters hovered over the mall and trained police dogs combed the parking lot for evidence and suspects after the shooting. Many customers were held at the mall until their cars had been searched.

Baby Richard spends first Christmas with biological parents

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) -- The boy known as Baby Richard is spending his first Christmas with his biological parents, who won a custody fight with his adoptive family last April.

Daniel Kirchner, 4, spent last Christmas with Robert and Kimberly Warburton, the couple who had raised him since adopting him as an infant.

The boy wants a Spiderman game and a baby brother or sister this Christmas. He might get both. His parents, Otakar and Daniela Kirchner, are expecting their second child in March.

Danny also might soon get to visit the Warburtons' 8-year-old son, whom Danny once considered his older brother. The Warburtons recently accepted the Kirchners' offer to let the two boys meet without either set of parents present.

The Warburtons adopted Danny in 1991, four days after Daniela, then unmarried, agreed to give him up. Otakar Kirchner was estranged from Daniela at the time and initially thought the baby was dead. He tried to gain custody 57 days after Danny's birth. The Illinois Supreme Court invalidated the adoption in 1994, ruling that Kirchner's parental rights were improperly terminated.


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