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October 26, 1995 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-10-26

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The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 26, 1995 - 9A
Federal death
Mpelty sought in
i Texas abduction

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - Six-
teen-year-old Lisa Rene screamed in
terror and begged a 911 operator for
help as men claiming to be FBI agents
broke into her apartment and dragged
her away.
Over two days, she was raped repeat-
edly, beaten with a shovel and then
buried alive in what prosecutors said
was retaliation against her two brothers
for a drug deal gone bad.
The short and chilling recording of
Lisa's 911 call was played for the jury
Tuesday, the opening day in the first
federal capital punishment case filed
under the crime bill enacted last year.
"They're trying to break down my
door! Hurry up!" Lisa told the 911
dispatcher on Sept.24,1994. A muffled
scream is heard seconds later, with a
man saying, "Who you on the phone
with?" The line then went dead.
The case became a federal one when
Lisa's abductors crossed the Texas line
and drove her to Pine Bluff, Ark., where
she was buried in a park. Among the 60
crimes covered under the federal law
are kidnappings that result in death.
Three of five men charged have
pleaded guilty to kidnapping in ex-
change'for leniency when they are sen-

tenced. They agreed to testify against
Orlando Hall, 24, of El Dorado, Ark.,
and Bruce Webster, 22, of Pine Bluff,
Hall is on trial now. Webster, who
also faces the death penalty, is sched-
uled for trial March 4.
Prosecutors said Hall was a drug
dealer who had come to Texas to buy
$5,000 worth of marijuana from Lisa's
brothers, Stanfield Vitalis, 28, and Neil
Rene, 19. Hall and Webster paid thd
money but never got the marijuana.
Hall found out the brothers were stay-
ing in their sister's Arlington apart-
ment. They abducted Lisa when they
couldn't find her brothers, Assistant
U.S. Attorney Richard Roper said.
Hall's brother Demetrius testified
Tuesday that he, his brother, Webster
and23-year-old Steven Beckley dressed
in camouflage fatigues, armed them-
selves with two pistols and a baseball
bat and drove to the apartment. Lisa
was home alone.
Demetrius Hall said he and Webster
raped the girl during the car ride to
Arkansas, and Beckley raped her again
once they were in a Pine Bluff motel
room, where she was kept with a hood
over her head.

five students die as
commuter train ts
school bus in Illinois

commuter train ripped apart a school
bus stopped on the tracks yesterday as
youngsters in the back rushed forward
in terror at the sight of 620 tons of steel
bearing down on them. Five students
were killed and about 30 injured.
.,Some witnesses said the bus was try-
ing to cross the tracks about 7:20 a.m.
when it got caught at a red light behind
a car and couldn't make it all the way
across. But others said there was no car
ahead and the driver could have moved
"You could see the terror in their
eyes," witness Coreen Bachinsky said.
"You could hear the metal, the glass
flying, the screams. It was very, very
The bus was taking the youngsters
to. 1,400-student Cary-Grove High
School in Cary. The Chicago-bound
express train was traveling between
O - 60 mph and sheared the body of
the bus off the chassis, spinning it
arpund 180 degrees.
"From then on out, all you heard was
screaming," said Andrea Arens, 19, who
wad waiting for another train in this
town 37 miles northwest of Chicago.
Four people were pronounced dead
atthe scene, and one died at a hospital.
At,least seven of the injured were in
critical condition.
,Taben Johanson, a 15-year-old who
ws sitting in his usual third-row seat
on the bus, said the gate came down on
the, back of the bus and there was a car

in front. Then he looked up and saw the
train bearing down on them.
"I basically figured it out when all the
kids were running forward, screaming,"
he said.
Jim Homola, a carpenter driving his
children to school, said he had been
stopped behind the bus and saw the
approaching train. "We started scream-
ing, 'Go! Go! "'he said. "It was over in
a matter of seconds."
Homola said the bus driver "was in
hysterics" afterward.
The driver, whose identity was not
released, was taken to a hospital for
She was filling in for the regular
driver on the route, students said. The
secretary of state's office said the 54-
year-old woman had been licensed to
drive a school bus since 1987 and had a
flawless driving record.
Hours after the accident, the body of
the bus lay about 10 feet from the wheels
and chassis, the steering wheel jutting
intheair. Red plastic sheets were draped
over some of the wreckage.
Helen Getchell, a nurse who helped
out at the scene, said she suctioned out
the throat of one injured boy with a
turkey baster obtained from a conve-
nience store nearby.
"He died in my arms," she said, add-
ing that she hoped the boy's mother
would know "he didn't die by himself."
"There were kids laying on the ground
on the driver's side of the bus," said
another witness, James Orlandino.

Wreckage of a
bus hit by a
commuter train
(above) is shown
hours after the.
crash that killed
five Cary-Grove
Community High
School students
and injured
dozens more
yesterday In Fox
River Grove, Ill.
The bus was
stopped at a red
light with the
back end still on
the tracks when a
train traveling 50-
60 mph sheared
off the back of
the vehicle and
spun it around
180 degrees.
A thankful mother
embraces her
daughter (right),
who was on the
bus yesterday.

Gramm seeks donations
for NRA 'birthday gift'

Gramm, a Republican presidential can-
didate, is allowing the National Rifle
Association to use his name and title to
solicit contributions and new members
on "U.S. senator" letterhead.
The gun lobby drafted, paid for and
mailed a Gramm letter seeking dona-
tions as a "special birthday gift" for the
NRA's chief lobbyist.
Public interest and gun-control groups
denounced the strategy as ethically ques-
tionable. But aides to the Texas law-
maker defended it as a common fund-
raising technique.
Gramm's undated letter praises the
NRA's executive vice president, Wayne
LaPierre, as "my friend ever since I
came to Congress."
Noting that LaPierre's 45th birthday
is next month, Gramm asked recipients

to give a friend or relative a gift mem-
bership in the NRA "as a special birth-'
day gift to Wayne."
He called on supporters to help the
NRA, whose membership has declined,
to recruit 100,000 new members by:
year's end.
Gramm's letter was sent to NRA
members on stationery marked "Phil
Gramm U.S. Senator" with an eagle
seal on top. The envelope also bears a
"Phil Gramm, U.S. Senator" legend.
However, despite its official appear-
ance, the letterhead is not actually Sen-
ate stationery and the seal is not an
official one., Both the gun lobby and
Gramm's office said the letter was pro-
duced and mailed by the NRA.
Federal law forbids soliciting or re-
ceiving political contributions in a fed-
eral building.



An American University Washington Semester
representative is coming, live, to the Univer-
sity of Michigan to answer your questions,
present a short slide show, and tell you the in's
and out's of our nation's capital.
Whatever your program of study, interests, or future goals, Washington, D.C.
has something to offer. American University's Washington Semester Pro.
gram offers in-depth learning and internships in the following areas:


0 GYM q


American Politics
American Politics: Public Law
Foreign Policy
Economic Policy
International Business and Trade

International Environment and
Peace and Conflict Resolution
Museum Studies and the Arts
(spring semester only)

(Formerly Powerhouse Gym)
stop by at 3570 Washtenaw (across from Arborland Mall)
or give us a call at 677-1315
G R 0 U P
For a car in Management Consulting
MaediatiwxwGrns. one fte*a landina and larenst indnemndent

" Monday, October 30th
" 8:00 am -12:00 noon (slide shows on the half-hour, from 9:30)
In the Michigan Union, Michigan Room
* Washington Semester Program Open House
Faculty and administrators are welcome to attend.
For Information on the open house, contact UM Career Planning and Placement, tel: 764-7460.
For information on the Washington Semester Program, call 1-800.424-2600, or e-mail <washsem@american.edu>
-------- ------------ Qm - -- m-m-mm-- "mm" "
L Career planning & Placement invites you to pa rtapate in Career Days (Cxtrker30-Novemt'er 10) programs, panets & act bes designed Ohepy0 n verrer Itn
I O~') & connect with professionals from various fields, gradluate programis & organizations. Stop bygf PdP for a complete listing of pro "Man and events!
1 connect with Recruiters prep for the 'job search
r h Graduate & Professional School Day The US Job Search: Strategies for International Students I
SNovember 2; Noon-4:00 pm; Michigan Union October 30; 6:10-7:30 pm; 1311 EECS
Job Fair'95 The Job Search: Perspectives for Lesbian, Gay & Bisexual Students
November 9; 1:00-5:00 pm; Michigan Union October 30; 7:10-8:30 pm; Law School
Job Fair '95 Pre-Conference Workshop I
I xplore Career Options November 3; 12:10-1:00 pm; CP&P
MOs & DOs: Similarities & Differences Mock Inteviews
November 2; 4:10-5:00 pm; CP&P November 4; 10:00-3:00 pm; CP&P I
Careers in Health: Nurse Practitioner, Employers' Expert Advice for Job Search Success
Physician Assistant & Athletic Trainer Nomber 9; 12:10-1:00 pm; Michigan Union/Anderson
. November 2; 7:10-8:30 pm; CCRB .

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