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Posted at 9:01 AM ET, 12/17/2009

Thursday news roundup

By Washington Post editors


Good morning D.C. Here's your Thursday news roundup:

Serial rapist returns. Area authorities are concerned that a serial rapist may be back on the prowl and are asking for the public’s help in arresting him. Virginia authorities believe the masked man allegedly responsible for raping two Prince William County teenagers on Halloween is linked to a string of assaults up and down the East Coast. The rapist had not struck in the D.C. region for three years – but the Halloween incident has investigators alarmed. The suspect’s DNA has been found at 13 crime scenes in four states since he first struck in 1997. In the Washington region, he’s been linked to four assaults in Fairfax, one in Leesburg and several in Prince George’s County. More here.


More disturbing details emerge in the case of the D.C. police officer charged with felony murder. According to court papers, Officer Reginald Jones allegedly participated in the planning of the holdup, drove his co-conspirators to the scene and then acted as a lookout. Pretty damming stuff. WUSA has a video of Jones at his academy graduation in which he says he became a cop to be a “positive role model.” More from the Post here.

Car tax debate revs up: Across the river, it appears that Gov. Tim Kaine may be ready to revive debate about the car tax – sometimes referred to as the “third rail” in Virginia politics. But the state’s financial picture is bleak -- a potential $3.5 billion shortfall over two years. Currently, Virginia spends about $1 billion a year to shoulder its part of the tax for owners. More here

A high tech Nativity tale? Twenty years ago, two high school pals on their way home from the nearby 7-Eleven found an abandoned baby. Earlier this month, that “baby” found them – via Facebook. The Post’s Michael Ruane weaves the tale of their surprising reunion. (How can you NOT click through and read?)

Clever or racist? WJLA reports on the simmering debate among students at Georgetown University over a magazine article some believe is racist. The editor of the Georgetown Heckler, the campus’ humor magazine, said the online article was designed to mock an earlier controversy surrounding the student newspaper’s April Fool’s issue, which among other things, called for more sex between black and white students. Editors at The Hoya, Georgetown’s student newspaper, later apologized for the issue after members of the Black Student Allliance and other student groups staged a sit-in. The Heckler’s editor apologized, but said he has no plans to take the story down.

Small bits: Prince George’s County school officials are the latest in the region grapping with a tough budget climate, The Post’s Nelson Hernandez reports. The Baltimore Sun offers this take on school budget woes in Anne Arundel County. Whistleblower honored: The man who raised concerns about the safety of the bridge that would carry Metro’s soon-to-be-built Silver Line over I-66 to Dulles is honored for speaking out.
For you techies, a company is offering an iPhone apps that provides mobile crime data.

Evicted?! No Thursday news summary would be complete without an animal story, so here goes: NBC 4 reports that out in Prince George’s County, Gwendolyn the pot bellied pig faces eviction because she’s, ahem, too big. Gwen’s owner, Patricia Brown could be in violation of a county law prohibits the keeping or raising of livestock or any animal that is not a traditional household pet. Brown has started a Facebook page to rally for Gwen’s cause.

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading.

By Washington Post editors  | December 17, 2009; 9:01 AM ET
Tags:  d.c. cop arrested, news roundup, news summary  
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