National Roundup

Oklahoma
Autopsy: Single bullet killed man from Australia
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Australian baseball player shot dead in a random attack in central Oklahoma was struck by a bullet that collapsed both his lungs, fractured two ribs and ripped through his aorta and pulmonary artery, the state medical examiner said Tuesday.
Christopher Lane, 22, of Melbourne, died Aug. 16 in Duncan. Police say three teenagers targeted Lane at random to break up the monotony of an Oklahoma summer.
Lane was shot in the back and the bullet struck two ribs and passed through Lane’s esophagus, heart and lungs before stopping near his left shoulder.
The official cause of death was listed as “penetrating gunshot wound to the back.”
Chancey Allen Luna, 16, and James Francis Edwards, Jr., 15, both of Duncan, have been charged as adults with first-degree murder. Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, of Duncan, was charged with using a vehicle in the discharge of a weapon and with accessory to first-degree murder. He is considered a youthful offender but will be tried in adult court.
In the days after the slaying, Duncan Police Chief Dan Ford said the older boy told investigators that the three were “bored” and decided to kill someone for the “fun of it.”

California
Ford recalls his assassination attempt in video

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Newly released footage shows President Gerald Ford calmly and carefully recalling how Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, a Charles Manson disciple, tried to kill him in a Sacramento park.
The roughly 20-minute interview taped in Washington for Fromme’s trial was released Monday by a federal court as the result of a motion filed by a Sacramento historical group.
In the tape, Ford gestures gently with his hands and sips water as he answers questions from a lawyer about what began as a routine morning in September 1975 before Fromme pushed through a crowd on the street, drew a semi-automatic pistol and pointed it at Ford.
Ford recalled seeing a hand holding the large handgun amid the crowd before a Secret Service agent lunged at Fromme. The gun wasn’t fired, and Ford wasn’t hurt.
The tape had been sealed since the case and was largely forgotten in the years since. It was released at the request of the Eastern District Historical Society, a nonprofit that seeks to preserve the history of the federal court based in Sacramento.
The case was the first in history featuring oral testimony from a sitting president in a criminal trial.

Minnesota
Man found in freezer trying to leave girlfriend

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors say a Minnesota woman beat her boyfriend to death, taped his body up in plastic and hid it in a freezer because he was trying to break up with her.
Jetaun Wheeler is charged with second-degree murder in the killing of the 58-year-old man at their Shorewood home. Authorities have not named the victim.
A criminal complaint says the 29-year-old Wheeler told investigators the man had taken the bus back to Chicago. Detectives say when they searched the couple’s house Aug. 21, they found bloody carpet under Wheeler’s mattress. Blood spatter led them to the garage where they found the body in the freezer.
The Star Tribune says authorities are searching for Wheeler’s three children, aged 10, 8 and 7.

Ohio
Sinkhole that ate car costs city about $100,000

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A utilities official says a large sinkhole that swallowed a moving car and briefly trapped the driver cost a northwest Ohio city about $100,000.
Utility workers and contractors had to clean out broken sewer lines and fill the sinkhole that opened at a major intersection in Toledo in early July. WTOL-TV ) reports the city used a private contractor to help with emergency repairs for the broken sewer lines and the street above them.
The city council is scheduled to consider approval for a $73,000 payment to that contractor.
Toledo Public Utilities Director Dave Welch says the total bill for the sinkhole rises to $100,000 when the cost of city employee labor is included.
The station says the injured driver who was rescued from the sinkhole by firefighters has recovered.

Oregon
Sheriff: Missing Arizona teen’s body is found 

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The father of an Arizona teenager whose body was found near his abandoned SUV in the woods of southern Oregon said his son was “a young man who had a broken heart.”
The body of Johnathan Croom, 18, was found Monday evening about 1,000 feet from where his vehicle was found abandoned last week, Douglas County sheriff’s spokesman Dwes Hutson said in a statement.
Hutson said the Apache Junction, Ariz., youth’s death was being investigated as a suicide but he provided no additional information. He didn’t return a call for comment.
In a telephone interview from Oregon, David Croom said his son was grieving the end of a recent relationship with “someone back in Phoenix.”
The father said he had no specifics on a cause of death.
The teen had talked with his parents about the book “Into the Wild” and told a friend he wanted to run away.

New Jersey
Judge refuses to toss Meadowland megamall lawsuit

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey judge has refused to throw out a lawsuit filed by the New York Giants and New York Jets over the proposed American Dream megamall in the Meadowlands sports complex.
State Superior Court Judge Peter Doyne’s ruling released Monday means the suit against the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority and developer Triple Five Group can go forward.
The lawsuit claims Edmonton-based Triple Five and the sports authority violated a 2006 agreement that essentially gave the teams veto power over any modifications to the original design for the mall, known as Xanadu.
Xanadu was supposed to open in 2007 but fell prey to the financial downturn and problems with the original developers, and it lay dormant until Triple Five took over in late 2010.

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