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September 07, 1995 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-09-07

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2 - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 7, 1995

Ti l tlTl a"

Fuhnman pleads the Fifth in Oj. Simpson tial

The Washington Post
LOS ANGELES - A tight-lipped,
subdued Mark Fuhrman invoked his
Fifth Amendment protection against
self-incrimination in the O.J. Simpson
double murder trial yesterday and re-
fused to answer when asked if he had
planted any evidence against the celeb-
rity defendant.
Appearing on the witness stand for
only three minutes, with the jury not
present, the retired police detective re-
fused to answer four questions posed
by defense attorney Gerald Uelmen that
were designed to raise doubts about
Fuhrman's truthfulness when he testi-
fied against Simpson last March.
Uelmen first asked Fuhrman, a key
prosecution witness, whether the testi-
mony he gave at a preliminary hearing
in July 1994 was "completely truthful."
The detective's reply: "I wish to assert
my Fifth Amendment privilege."
"Have you ever falsified a police
report?" Uelman asked next. Fuhrman
gave the same the reply.
"Is it your intention to assert your
Fifth Amendment privilege with re-
spect to all questions that I ask you?"
asked Uelman, and the retired detective
replied "yes."
Darryl Mounger, Fuhrman's lawyer,
then intervened, telling Judge Lance A.
Ito; "Yourhonor, further questions don't
serve any purpose.... Anything further
can only be a show."
But Uelman had one more question:

challenging Fuhrman'scredibility:
nearly 13 hours of tape-recorded inter-
views he gave to a North Carolina
screenwriterin which he repeatedly used
the racial epithet "nigger" and boasted
of falsifying police reports, fabricating
probable cause against suspects and
planting evidence.
Fuhrman had testified under oath last
March that he had not used the racial
slur at any time in the past 10 years.
Defense attorneys said they would
also present a motion today that
Fuhrman's earlier testimony should be
stricken from the trial record because
the prosecution had not earlier disclosed
other evidence.
Sitting at the defense table, Simpson
looked stunned and upset by Fuhrman's
brief appearance yesterday, repeatedly
shaking his head in apparent disbelief
and mouthing words that appeared to
be: "That (expletive) guy."
Ito said there would be no further
questioning of Fuhrman on the issues
raised yesterday, although the judge
said the detective was still subject to
recall on other questions.
Under California law, a witness can-
not be compelled to invoke his Fifth
Amendment privilege in front of ajury.
Laura Hart McKinny returned to the
witness stand and further undermined
Fuhrman's credibility by telling thejury
that the former police detective had
used the racial epithet "nigger" in inter-
views with her as recently as 1988.

NATIONAL REPORT '
Weaver lashes out at U.S. government
WASHINGTON - White separatist Randy Weaver, in emotion-charged
testimony before a Senate subcommittee, admitted yesterday that he had made
mistakes but demanded that federal agents be held account-
able for their actions during the 1992 confrontation at Ruby '
Ridge, Idaho, that claimed the lives of Weaver's wife, his
14-year-old son and a deputy U.S. marshal.
"I am not without fault in this matter," said Weaver, an
anti-government militant whose refusal to appear in court
to answer federal weapons charges led to the siege of his a
isolated cabin by federal marshals and the FBI. "If I had it
to do over again... I would come down from the mountain -
for the court appearance."
At the same time, however, in his first testimony about
the incident that has led to the suspension of five FBI Weaver
officials and a criminal investigation of their actions, an often-tearful Weaver
implored the grim-faced senators: "There must be accountability for the killings:"
Ruby Ridge -like the even more deadly confrontation at the Branch Davidian
compound in 1993 - has become a symbol to anti-government conservatives of
federal law enforcement run amok.

Citizens demonstrate against LAPD Det. Mark Furhman, who testified yesterday.

"Detective Fuhrman, did you plant or
manufacture any evidence in this case?"
To which Fuhrman again took the Fifth.
Fuhrman appeared somber but fa-
tigued during the brief but dramatic
appearance. It was a marked contrast to
the poised and polished performance he
gave as the prosecution's key witness
last March, when he testified he had
discovered a bloody glove behind
Simpson's house that matched one
found near the bodies of Nicole Brown
Simpson and Ronald L. Goldman soon

after they were murdered on the night
of June 12, 1994.
Fuhrman was the self-confident star
last March, outmaneuvering the bluster
of his famous cross-examiner. But yes-
terday the detective had dark circles
under his eyes.
Before he appeared yesterday, the
defense renewed its motion to Ito to
suppress crucial evidence collected by
detectives - including Fuhrman - on
the morning after the stabbing murders.
Defense lawyers cited new evidence

Re tors restrict
TVnetworks' power
WASHINGTON -In a long antici-
pated move that already has fueled re-
cent media mega-mergers, federal regu-
lators yesterday ordered the repeal of
the remaining rules that restrict the three
major TV networks from producing the
shows they air and selling programs on
the lucrative syndication market.
Pointing to the major networks' erod-
ing influence over viewership with the
growth of such alternatives as cable, the
Federal Communications Commission
said it was no longer necessary to curb'
the networks' ability to create and then
resell shows to individual television
stations.
The decision to immediately repeal
the so-called financial interest and syn-
dication rules comes about two months
earlier than the agency had originally
estimated.
The networks have been gearing up
forthe demise ofthe rules for more than
a year. Capital Cities/ABC Inc., for
instance, has several shows on the fall
prime-time schedule that it created

through joint production ventures with
studios like DreamWorks SKG. NBC is
unveiling a new show called "Caroline
In the City" created by CBS Inc.
Analysts say the anticipated demise
of the restrictions has been a factor in
some of the biggest mergers in media
industry history in recent weeks.
ndA Bureau lays
off workers
WASH INGTON - The Bureau of
Indian Affairs plans to lay off between
2,600 and 4,000 of its 12,000 workers,
the most severe personnel cuts any fed-
eral agency has undertaken in the cur-
rent round of budget reductions.
Assistant Interior Secretary Ada E.
Deer said the cuts will reduce the long-
criticized agency to "a shell of an orga-
nization" and have a "devastating" im-
pact on Native Americans. Under Sen-
ate guidelines, nearly 6,000 BIA educa-
tion workers be protected, but that still
leaves one out of every two remaining
BIA employees at risk of losing their
jobs, Deer said. The agency will send
out lay off notices by Sept. 25.

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& AROUND THE WORLD

a

Relief workers clean
and contain Russia's
summer oil spill
MOSCOW - After a long summer
of greasy labor, most of Russia's worst
oil spill has been cleaned up, and the
rest has been contained so it will not
wash into Arctic rivers next spring,
officials said yesterday.
"Basically, we are satisfied," said
Vadim P. Voronin of the World Bank,
which is funding the cleanup project in
Usinsk, about 1,000 miles northeast of
Moscow. As of this week, Voronin said,
"about 72 percent of the work has been
done."
"Obviously, there will be some pol-
lution left. But the gross oil will be
removed," he said. "The rest of tlie
work must be done by nature itself."'
In an unexpected spinoff, the Rus-
sian oil company responsible for the
Usinsk accident is now considering
forming a joint venture with the U.S.
company hired to mop up the mess to
create Russia's first oil-spill cleanup
company, spokesmen for both compa-
nies said.
The developments are the first up-
beat environmental news to come out
of the befouled Russian Arctic since the
summer of 1994, when a dilapidated oil
pipeline ruptured in about a dozen
places, gushing millions of gallons of
hot crude oil into creeks and streams

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r,

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that feed the mighty Pechora river.
Experts are still arguing about how
much oil really spilled, but the World
Bank estimate is 100,000 tons -
roughlythreetimesthesizeofthe Exxon
Valdez disaster in Alaska.
Strike in S. Africa
causes health crises
SOWETO, South Africa - A crip-
pling wildcat strike by thousands of
nurses at Baragwanath Hospital,
Africa's largest hospital, spread yester-
day to other medical facilities, escalat-
ing a major health care crisis.
More than 1,000 patients have been
prematurely discharged or transferred
to otherhospitals in the three days since
more than 1,700 nurses unexpectedly
walked off their jobs at Baragwanath
over demands for a25 percent pay hike,
officials said.
Baragwanath spokeswoman Hester
Vorster said about 3,500 nurses -
nearly the entire nursing staff - are
now honoring what the government con-
siders an illegal strike. She warned that
the 3,400-bed hospital, the largest in
the southern hemisphere, was in "a very
critical position."
"Basically, we are starting to close
the hospital down," she said.
All outpatient clinics, intensive-care
units, operating theaters and other key
services have already shut, she said.
-From Daily wire services

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