Former Miss USA Rima Fakih pleaded no contest to driving while visibly impaired in 30th District Court in Highland Park, Mich., on Wednesday morning after she was arrested in December and charged with having a blood-alcohol level more than twice the legal limit. Fakih, 26, was in court after she was ordered to stand trial on a misdemeanor drunken driving charge in January. The city and Fakih’s attorney struck a plea deal reducing an operating while intoxicated charge to driving while visibly impaired. Two other charges — open intoxicants, which is a misdemeanor, and careless driving, which is a civil infraction — were tossed out. Fakih two years ago was the first Arab American to be crowned Miss USA. … Beverly Hills police say they have concluded Whitney Houston’s death investigation and found no signs that a crime occurred. Lt. Mark Rosen said Wednesday the determination was made after reviewing the Grammy-winning singer’s full autopsy report, which attributed her death to accidental drowning. Coroner’s officials ruled heart disease and cocaine use also contributed to the 48-year-old singer’s death. Houston died in a bathtub of the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Feb. 11 on the eve of the Grammy Awards. … A prison panel denied parole Wednesday to mass murderer Charles Manson in his 12th and probably final bid for freedom. Manson, now a gray-bearded 77-year-old, did not attend the hearing where the parole board ruled he had shown no efforts to rehabilitate himself and would not be eligible for parole for another 15 years. Also playing heavily into the board’s decision was something Manson had said recently to one of his prison psychologists that a panel member read aloud. “‘I’m special. I’m not like the average inmate,”’ the member read. “‘I have spent my life in prison. I have put five people in the grave. I am a very dangerous man.”’
Names in the news, April 12
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