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April 06, 2009 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2009-04-06

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o The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Monday, April 6, 2009 - 3A

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Monday, April 6, 2009 - 3A

Mich. inaugurates
medical marijuana
program today
The first wave of what could be
tens of thousands of people signing
up for Michigan's medical-marijua-
na program is expected in Lansing
on Monday.
For Greg Francisco of Paw Paw,
who is organizing the mass submis-
sion in the state capital, it will be a
sweetmoment after a decade of work-
ing to legalize medical marijuana.
"In a year, we're going to look
back and say, 'What was the fuss
all about?' said Francisco, execu-
tive director of the Michigan Medi-
cal Marijuana Association. "People
have been using medical marijuana
in this state all along. All this does is
give them some legal protection."
Rules for Michigan's medical-
marijuana program went into effect
Saturday, and the state begins taking
applications Monday. The first cards
will be issued to patients later this
month. But questions linger about
how the program will work in prac-
tice, and resolving all the confusion
may require additional legislation or
intervention by the courts.
Winter storm
warning issued for
southeast Michigan
A winter storm warning has
been issued for much of southeast-
ern lower Michigan, where upward
of 10 inches of early spring snow is
Meteorologist Matt Mosteiko,
of the National Weather Service in
White Lake Township, says Sunday
afternoon rain will change over to
snow around midnight. The warn-
ing will be in effect from 11 p.m.
Sunday until 8 p.m. Monday.
Livingston, Genesee, Sanilac, Ing-
ham and St. Clair counties are
expecting six to 10 inches of snow.
Wayne and Washtenaw Counties
are expecting four to eight inches,
while the Grand Rapids area is
expecting two to four inches.
Mosteiko said the heaviest snow
will end about 1 p.m. Monday.
Temperatures are expected to
risegJsto the SQs by Wedoesday and
into the 60s by Saturday.
Wildfires blaze
throughout Texas
Firefighters from the Texas-
Oklahoma border to the Gulf Coast
struggled yesterday to contain wild-
fires that have destroyed homes,
killed cattle and charred thousands
of acres.
The largest of those fires, an
15,000-acre blaze near the Panhan-
die town of Wheeler, destroyed eight
homes and 26 outbuildings, includ-
ing barns and garages. An unknown
number of cattle were killed, accord-
ing to the Texas Forest Service.
Forest Service spokeswoman
Jeanne Eastham said yesterday

that the fire was about 25 percent
contained. Strong winds continued
to hamper firefighting efforts there
and elsewhere.
Four houses, two businesses and
six outbuildings were destroyed in a
fire in Aransas County on the Gulf
Coast late yesterday afternoon. The
} fire, which covered about 70 acres,
threatened at least 100 homes.
Fight over urinating
dog lured two police
into ambush
A 911 call that brought two police
officers to a home where they were
ambushed, and where a third was
also later killed during a four-hour
siege, was precipitated by a fight
between the gunman and his moth-
er over a dog urinating in the house.
The Saturday argument between
Margaret and Richard Poplawski
escalated to the point that she
threatened to kick him out and she
called police to do it, according to
a 12-page criminal complaint and
affidavit filed late Saturday.
When officers Paul Sciullo II
and Stephen Mayhle arrived, Mar-
garet Poplawski opened the door
and told them to come in and take
her 23-year-old son, apparently
unaware he was standing behind
her with a rifle, the affidavit said.
Hearing gunshots, she spun around
to see her son with the gun and ran
to the basement.
"What the hell have you done?"
she shouted.
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports

Ban lifted
on coverage
of war dead

Media able to cover
war deaths after lift
of 18-year ban
Del. (AP) - Media witnessed a
ceremony yesterday night for the
arrival of a Virginia airman killed
in Afghanistan, marking the end
of an 18-year ban on news cover-
age of returning U.S. war dead.
After receiving permission
from family members, the mili-
tary opened Dover Air Force
Base in Delaware to the press.
An eight-member team wear-
ing white gloves and camou-
flage fatigues carried the body of
30-year-old Air Force Staff Sgt.
Phillip Myers of Hopewell, Va.,
off a jet in a solemn ceremony on
a cool, clear night.
Myers was killed April 4 near
Helmand province, Afghani-
stan, when he was hit with an
improvised explosive device, the
Department of Defense said.
The ceremony under the yel-
lowish haze of airport flood-
lights took about 20 minutes with
Myers' wife and other family
members in attendance.
Myers was a member of the
48th Civil Engineer Squadron
with the Royal Air Force in Lak-

enheath, England, one of the
bases the U.S. Air Force uses in
the country. He was awarded
a Bronze Star for bravery last
year in recognition of his efforts
in support of Operation Endur-
ing Freedom, the Department of
Defense said.
The new Pentagon policy gives
families a choice of whether to
admit the press to ceremonies at
Dover, home to the nation's larg-
est military mortuary and the
entry point to the U.S. for service
personnel killed overseas.
Critics of the previous policy
had said the government was try-
ing to hide the human cost of war.
President Barack Obama had
asked for a review of the ban, and
Defense Secretary Robert Gates
has said that the blanket restric-
tion made him uncomfortable.
The administration will let fami-
lies decide whether to allow pho-
For example, if several caskets
arrive on the same flight, news
coverage will be allowed only for
those whose families have given
The ban was put in place by
President George H.W. Bush in
1991, at the time of the Persian
Gulf War. From the start, it was
cast as a way to shield grieving

South Korean protesters scuffle with police officers during a rally against North Korea's missiles near the U.S. Embassy in
Seoul, South Korea yesterday.
North- Korea msil
launch tests Oba-ma

Officials defend the
response to shooting
in Binghamton, NY

President responds
with call to U.N. to
condemn launch
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - The
U.S. and its allies sought to punish
North Korea's defiant launch of a
rocket that apparently fizzled into
the Pacific, holding an emergency
U.N. meeting to respond to an act
that some believe was a long-range
missile test.
President Barack Obama, faced
with his first global security crisis,
called foraninternationalresponse
and condemned North Korea for
threatening the peace and stability
of nations "near and far." Minutes
after liftoff, Japan requested the
emergency Security Council ses-
sion in New York.
South Korean President Lee
Myung-bak told a nationwide radio
broadcast Monday that "North
Korea's reckless act of threatening
regional and global security can-
not have any justification." South
Korea's National Assembly adopt-.
ed a resolution condemning the
rocket launch as a "serious provo-
U.S. and South Korean officials

claim the entire rocket, includ-
ing whatever payload it carried,
ended up in the ocean after yester-
day's launch, but many world lead-
ers fear the launch indicates the
capacity to fire a long-range mis-
sile. Pyongyang claims it launched
a communications satellite into
orbit that is now transmitting data
and patriotic songs.
"North Korea broke the rules,
once again, by testing a rocket that
could be used for long-range mis-
siles," Obama said in Prague. "It
creates instability in their region,
around the world. This provo-
cation underscores the need for
action, not just this afternoon in
the U.N. Security Council, but in
our determination to prevent the
spread of these weapons."
Council members met for three
hours yesterday, seeking a unified
response, but the meeting ended
with a deadlock, breaking up for
the night without issuing even a
customary preliminary statement
of condemnation.
Diplomats privy to the closed-
door talks say China, Russia, Libya
and Vietnamwere concerned about
further alienating and destabiliz-
ing North Korea.
"We're now in a very sensitive

moment," Chinese Ambassador
Zhang Yesui said after the talks.
"Our position is that all countries
concerned should show restraint
and refrain from taking actions
that might lead to increased ten-
The U.S. Britain, France and
Japan drafted aproposal for areso-
lution that could be adopted by the
end of the week. It aims to toughen
existing economic sanctions.
Mexican Ambassador Claude
Heller said the council would
reconvene Monday.
In Tokyo, Foreign Minister
Hirofumi Nakasone said Japan
was pushing hard for a resolution
and lobbying "respective nations"
by telephone.
South Korean Foreign Minister
Yu Myung-hwantold lawmakers in
Seoul that "all countries acknowl-
edge" the launch violates Security
Council Resolution 1718, passed
after North Korea's 2006 nuclear
test. "I think discussions will move
forward around that."
Using a possible loophole inbU.N.
sanctions that bar the North from
ballistic missile activity, Pyong-
yang claimed it was exercising its
right to peaceful space develop-

Response time a
factor in death
of 13 people at
immigration center
Even if police officers had imme-
diately entered the immigrant
center where a gunman had just
shot down 13 people, the victims'
injuries were so severe that none
would have survived, a county
prosecutor said Sunday.
But police didn't enter the
American Civic Association until
nearly 45 minutes after the first 911
calls came in at 10:30 a.m. Friday.
They began removing the wound-
ed about 15 minutes after that.
It took more than two hours
to clear the building. Survivors
reported huddling for hours in a
basement, not knowing whether
they were still in danger after
the gunman, 41-year-old Jiverly
Wong, killed 13 people.
Medical examiners who con-
ducted autopsies reported that the
victims' injuries were so severe
they would not have survived,

Broome County District Attorney
Gerald F. Mollen said.
"We definitively can say nobody
was shot after police arrival, and
nobody who had been shot could
have been saved even if the police
had walked in the door within the
first minute," Mollensaid.
The prosecutor's comments
came at a news conference Sunday,
an hour before officials released a
list of names and home countries
of the victims.
Four Chinese were amongthose
killed, and a Chinese student was
also shot in the arm and leg but
survived, officials said. The other
victims came from Haiti, Paki-
stan, the Philippines, Iraq, Brazil,
Vietnam and the United States.
The first 911calls came in atl10:30
a.m., police Chief Joseph Zikuski
said at a news conference. The call-
ers spoke broken English, and it
took dispatchers 2 minutes to sort
out what was happening, he said.
Patrol officers arrived at 10:33
a.m., five minutes before a wound-
ed receptionist called police to
report a gunman in the building,
Zikuski said. Police had earlier
said it was that call that brought
them to the immigration center.

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