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Psychopath at Miami's Fontainebleau? US: ABC's Dan Abrams On Stunning Details In The Mysterious Case Of The Murdered Hotel Heir

© Unknown
The family behind Miami Beach's Fontainebleau Hotel has experienced a horrific ordeal that seems like a plot from CSI: Miami. Good Morning America reported on the story of Narcy Novack, accused of killing her husband Ben Novack Jr. and of conspiring to kill her mother-in-law Bernice Novak, all in an effort, according to the FBI, to claim her millionaire husband's estate. Mediaite founder and ABC legal analyst Dan Abrams appeared with Cynthia McFadden to discuss the disturbing details of the case.

A relative of the victims said about Narcy, the alleged killer, "I want her to experience pain, I want her to experience everything that lock up and jail would give her." In addition to the two deaths, court papers also allege Narcy may have been so deranged that she tried to bribe a potential witness to frame her own daughter for the killing, and then tried to have the witness killed.


US: Texas rape bill opens door to prior conduct

Judge would decide if jury could hear previous uncharged allegations

In what critics say could be a "seismic change" in state criminal law, the Texas Senate tentatively approved a bill that would allow jurors in sexual assault cases to hear testimony about similar allegations against a defendant - even if the previous incident did not result in a conviction or even criminal charges.

The bill by Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, would allow the introduction of testimony about allegations of other sexual assaults to be admitted during the guilt or innocence phase of a trial if a judge - outside the presence of the jury - hears the evidence and deems it relevant.

The bill gives "greater resources to prosecutors and victims of sexual assault," Huffman said Monday. Allowing testimony of similar sex offenses "brings Texas closer in line with federal rules of evidence," she added.

Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, opposed the bill, arguing the measure would bring about "more wrongful convictions" because jurors will be afraid to acquit a defendant against whom they have heard multiple allegations. Jurors who are skeptical of the evidence of the case before them could feel compelled to convict "because he (the defendant) must have done something wrong," West said.


US: Arizona Gov. Brewer Vetoes Bill to Allow Guns on Public College Campuses

© The Associated Press
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, seen in this 2010 file photo, has vetoed a bill that would have allowed guns on public college campuses.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed a bill Monday that would have allowed guns on parts of public college campuses, a bill that she said likely faced a legal challenge.

"The bill was just poorly, sloppily written" Brewer told Fox News' Greta Van Susteren. "The legislation should have been crystal clear."

Brewer said in a written statement announcing the veto that the bill didn't adequately define the "public right of way" where guns could be carried on public university and community college campuses, and gun laws must be "crystal clear so that gun owners don't become lawbreakers by accident."

She also warned that the bill could have mistakenly included K-12 schools, "where federal and state laws generally prohibit weapons."

"While I support thoughtful expansion of where firearms should be allowed, the actual legislation that does so must be unambiguous and clear to protect the Second Amendment rights of gun owners. Senate Bill 1467 is neither," she said in the written statement.


South Africa: Man 'died after wandering into crocodile waters'

A farm worker may have deliberately waded into a crocodile-infested river after a domestic row according to police in South Africa.
© Alamy
A crocodile in Kruger National Park.
David Lubisi, 40, was eaten alive after he entered the Lepelle river following an argument with his girlfriend, detectives believe.

The father-of-three has not been seen for more than a week after allegedly telling a colleague about his plan on April 7.

"Our investigations have revealed that at around 7pm on April 7 he told a co-worker he wanted to walk into the river, which he knew to be infested with crocodiles," said Sergeant Malesela Makgopa.

"He was last seen heading towards the water and never turned up after that.

"We believe he may have been having domestic problems with his girlfriend ."

Alarm Clock

US: Unwitting Audience Clap and Cheer as Teenager Stabs Himself to Death on Stage at Open Mic Night

A troubled 19-year-old stabbed himself to death on stage at an open mic night after playing a song called "Sorry For All the Mess."

Kipp Rusty Walker repeatedly plunged the six-inch blade into his chest as the audience clapped and cheered in the mistaken belief it was piece of performance art.

But when he collapsed in a pool of his own blood they started screaming in horror and rushed to help him, but his wounds were too severe and he died soon after.

© KTVZ.com
Public suicide: Kipp Rusty Walker, who killed himself after playing a number on the keyboards at an open mic event in Bend, Oregon.
The bizarre suicide has left the community of Bend in Oregon stunned and wondering why he would end his life in such a public way.

But questions will be asked of mental health authorities after it emerged that Walker had told friends of his plan and had threatened to kill himself before.

On that occasion he had been taken in for treatment but was released back into the community.

Arrow Down

US: Teenage girl survives plunge from Golden Gate Bridge

Golden Gate Bridge
© Jeff King/CNN
More than 1,300 people have been killed jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge since the 1930s.
A 16-year-old girl survived a plunge from the Golden Gate Bridge over San Francisco Bay on Sunday, according to local media reports.

The girl either jumped or fell from midspan of the bridge, about a 220-foot fall to the water below, CNN affiliate KGO reported, citing a fire department dispatcher. The girl was conscious when pulled from the water, the Coast Guard told KGO. She was taken to Marin General Hospital.

It was the second time in two months a teenager plunged from the span and survived.


Hungary considers giving mothers extra votes

© Agence France-Presse
The suggestion is that mothers with small children could get additional votes in elections
Hungary's new government is considering controversial plans to give mothers with small children additional votes in elections.

Jozsef Szajer, a senior official from the ruling conservative Fidesz party, explained that 20 per cent of Hungary's population are children and that "the interests of future generations are not represented in decision making". "100 years ago it was unusual to give votes to women," he said.

The proposed legislation, which would be a first for modern democracy, is inspired by a concept developed in 1986 by American demographer Paul Demeny, who argued that children "should not be left disfranchised for some 18 years".

Mr Szajer said the law would give "mothers the vote on behalf of a maximum of one child".


Teens - gay or straight - more likely to attempt suicide in conservative towns

Major study of Oregon high schoolers probes teen mental health and social climates

© Associated Press/ Phil Klein
Zachary Toomay, 18, poses near his home in Arroyo Grande, Calif., on Saturday.
Chicago - Suicide attempts by gay teens - and even straight kids - are more common in politically conservative areas where schools don't have programs supporting gay rights, a study involving nearly 32,000 high school students found.

Those factors raised the odds and were a substantial influence on suicide attempts even when known risk contributors like depression and being bullied were considered, said study author Mark Hatzenbuehler, a Columbia University psychologist and researcher.

His study found a higher rate of suicide attempts even among kids who weren't bullied or depressed when they lived in counties less supportive of gays and with relatively few Democrats. A high proportion of Democrats was a measure used as a proxy for a more liberal environment.

Arrow Down

Egypt Archaeology Chief Zahi Hawass to Appeal Jail Term on Bookshop Plan

Dr Zahi Hawass
© unknown
Dr Zahi Hawass
Zahi Hawass, Egypt's minister of state for antiquities, said he will appeal a one-year jail sentence imposed on him yesterday.

The sentence is related to a lawsuit accusing him of refusing to carry out a court ruling, the state-run Middle East News Agency said today. The court had ordered a halt to bidding from companies to run a bookstore in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Hawass said today in his blog.

"Tomorrow, the head of the legal affairs department at the Ministry of Antiquities will go to the court to file our appeal," Hawass said in the Web log. "He will present evidence that the bid for the bookstore contract was finished before the original court ruling, so therefore we could not follow the ruling to stop the bidding."


"Technology can't replace God": Pope

Pope Benedict XVI
© Reuters/Stefano Rellandini
Pope Benedict XVI holds a palm as he arrives to lead the Palm Sunday mass at the Vatican April 17, 2011.
Pope Benedict led Roman Catholics into Holy Week celebrations, telling a Palm Sunday crowd that man will pay the price for his pride if he believes technology can give him the powers of God.

Under a splendid Roman sun, the German pope presided at a colorful celebration where tens of thousands of people waved palm and olive branches to commemorate Jesus' entry into Jerusalem the week before he was crucified.

The pope, who turned 84 on Saturday, wove his sermon around the theme of man's relationship with God and how it can sometimes be threatened by technology.

"From the beginning men and women have been filled -- and this is as true today as ever -- with a desire to 'be like God', to attain the heights of God by their own powers," he said, wearing resplendent red and gold vestments.

"Mankind has managed to accomplish so many things: we can fly! We can see, hear and speak to one another from the farthest ends of the earth. And yet the force of gravity which draws us down is powerful," he said.