SPOTLIGHT BRIEFS

Yale lab tech gets 44 years for killing student

Posted June 03, 2011, at 9:27 p.m.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A former animal research technician was sentenced Friday to 44 years in prison for killing a Yale graduate student days before what was to be her wedding day in 2009. The judge’s decision came after anguished relatives described how their anticipation of a celebration turned to grief as they returned home with her in a coffin.

Raymond Clark III, 26, apologized in New Haven Superior Court for strangling 24-year-old Annie Le of Placerville, Calif. Her body was found upside down stuffed in a wall of a research lab on Sept. 13, 2009, her wedding day and five days after she was last seen inside the Yale medical building.

“Annie was and will always be a wonderful person, by far a better person that I will ever be in my life,” Clark said. “I’m sorry I lied. I’m sorry I ruined lives and I’m sorry for taking Annie Le’s life.”

Clark pleaded guilty to the killing earlier this year, and prosecutors revealed at the time that he had left behind evidence of a sexual assault and desperately tried to cover his tracks.

Rabid beaver attacks 3 in Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA — Pennsylvania wildlife officials say a rabid beaver attacked three people in Philadelphia.

The Game Commission reported Friday that an animal blamed for attacking a couple on Wednesday and a child on Thursday tested positive for rabies.

The attacks happened near Pennypack Creek in northeast Philadelphia. Authorities are warning people to be on the alert for animals acting unusually in the area.

Massachusetts tornado graded ‘severe,’ weather service says

TAUNTON, Mass. — The National Weather Service said Friday that storm damage in the hardest hit-areas in Massachusetts likely was from a “severe” tornado rated at least EF-3, meaning it had wind speeds between 136 and 165 mph.

The weather service said early information showed a tornado that moved from Westfield through Springfield and east to Monson and beyond got the classification of “EF-3 or higher” on the Enhanced Fujita Scale that goes from 1 to 5. EF-3 tornadoes can cause “severe damage,” including overturning cars and tearing off roofs.

The National Weather Service said it still was conducting a detailed survey from the Wednesday storms that flattened more than 200 structures and killed at least three people.

AP: UN report warns of ‘ethnic cleansing’ in Sudan

JUBA, Sudan — A confidential United Nations report warns that the invasion by Sudan’s military of the contested north-south region of Abyei could lead to “ethnic cleansing” if the tens of thousands of residents who fled are not able to return.

The U.N. human rights report — dated May 29 and marked “Not For Public Citation or Distribution” — said the north’s Khartoum government may have carried out a premeditated military plan to invade Abyei when Sudanese Armed Forces troops moved in May 21.

Expressing its “grave concern” about the escalating violence, the U.N. Security Council later Friday condemned Khartoum for seizing control of Abyei, “and the resulting displacement of tens of thousands of residents.”

It also called on the Sudanese Armed Forces to “ensure an immediate halt to all looting, burning, and illegal resettlement” in Abyei and asked both the north and the south to withdraw their military forces from the area.

The Ngok Dinka, a black tribe that associates itself with Sudan’s south, fled Abyei when northern troops and ethnic Misseriya — Arab cattle herders aligned with the north — moved in and looted homes. The U.N. report estimated that between 15 percent and 20 percent of the homes in Abyei were burned in what it called “deliberate destruction” and a violation of international humanitarian law.

 

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