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tv   Fox 5 News Edge at 11  FOX  November 16, 2010 11:00pm-11:30pm EST

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about 72p with 60 hertz rate is decent quality but a better price. how do you choose between lcd and plasma, though? >> a very bright room, a house with a lot of room and can't control the brightness with curtains and stuff, lcd may be a better choice. conversely, the thing we really like about plasma is they have virtually unlimited viewing angles. >> consumer reports said flat screens are better for viewing fast and 3d content. we posted more tips on click on consumer. the news keeps coming. here's brian bolter now with the news edge at 11:00. >> we are going in depth on three big stories tonight. an inside take on the chandra levy murder case as it heads now to the jury, plus the troubled federal program that's now at the heart of the jack johnson investigation. but we begin tonight with an exclusive investigation. a local city official's commute on the taxpayer's dime. we're focusing in on new carrollton. we told you about suspicious sales of city property by the
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police chief. now questions about the man in charge of running the day to day. we're talking about the city administrator, mike downs. his commute, 160 miles round trip and some residents are upset about footing that bill. fox 5's maureen umeh has the investigation. >> reporter: quitting time on a monday and michael downs is on his way home. fox 5 going the speed limit can't keep up with his city issued 2010 chevy impala as it heads up route 50 towards the eastern shore. more than an hour later we find the car parked in downs' driveway, 80 miles away from where he works as city administrator for new carrollton. is this okay? >> absolutely not. >> reporter: cynthia sweet is a long time resident and like others has questioned downs' take home car and his 160-mile round trip commute to rock hall. where do you care about this? >> because i pay taxes in the city and i've been a resident
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for 18 years. >> reporter: department guidelines provided to fox 5 by downs himself say any employee with a take home must live within a 30-mile air radius of the city. downs wouldn't go on camera to talk about his daily commute but told us in an e-mail an exception has been made in my case. i reside 36 miles from new carrollton as the crow flies. >> if his personal car wasn't adequate enough to drive that distance, it shouldn't be our responsibility to pay that fee. >> reporter: while city guidelines stress employees must obey all vehicle laws, fox 5 found downs has been stopped at least three times since last summer in city vehicles for reckless driving, failure to display registration card and going 80 in a 55 zone, all which he pled guilty to. >> i'm uncomfortable with the situation. >> reporter: katrina duldrow is a new council member. this is is council never signed off on any of downs it' take
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home cars. it's all -- downs' take home cars. it's all been done at the discretion of the mayor. >> it's not illegal, but it just does not seem right. >> reporter: the mayor did not return our calls. he and downs were in a meeting when we stopped by city hall, but assistant city administrator graham waters did talk. is it appropriate for him to have a city issued car? >> yes. absolutely. >> reporter: gas and mileage and live 80 miles away? >> yes. because that's a personal matter. it's between how the mayor wishes to allocate resources. it's, you know, part of his compensation. >> reporter: in these tough economic times? water says expenses for downs' car are not an issue for the city budget and as for those traffic violations? >> the mayor and mr. downs discussed it. it's put to rest. the council was informed of the issues and that was it. >> reporter: the council member doldruw says she did not know about all the citations until
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we told her. she says it is that lack of transparency and fiscal responsibility which led her to recently run for mayor. >> the policy needs to be reviewed. it needs to be redone. >> reporter: she lost, but says she will continue to fight to make sure citizens in new carrollton aren't being taken for a ride. we're told downs did pay for those tickets and only gets gas reimbursement for city-related travel. you can read the entire e-mail response downs sent us at click on special reports under the news tab. you can also watch the first part of our new carrollton investigation and send us any tips. maureen umeh, fox 5 news. ed murder of chandra levy now in the -- murder chandra levy now in the hands of the jury. both side closed up their case today. deliberations begin monday morning, the defense pushing the point all evidence is circumstantial, the prosecution
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reminding the jurors chandra was attacked in a way very similar of two attacks on other women in rock week park. ingmar guandique was convicted in those two attacks. nine years after chandra levy disappeared will the case finely be closed? let's bring in bernie grimm. you've been skeptical over the last couple weeks of the prosecution's case i think it's safe to say. were any loose ends tied together today that may have changed your mind? >> the prosecutor in the case certainly knows her way around the courtroom and from what i understand and my discussions with paul wagner today, she did a dependable job with the facts she has, although for me i just don't think it's enough. they can't even put guandique in the park. the best connection they have is through a jailhouse penitentiary informant who said guandique admitted to killing the woman and are for me that's not proof beyond a reasonable doubt. >> is that this confession that we've heard about?
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it's not really to the police involved, but to his cellmate? >> right. he had a conversation with his cellmate and then lo and behold years after he successfully gets away with this murder he tells a guy who he virtually barely knew. for me hard to believe, doesn't mean it didn't happen, but for me hard to believe certainly beyond a reasonable doubt. >> that plays into what the defense said today in closing arguments is that the prosecution got tunnel vision by focusing on guandique. does that make sense to you after seeing this trial play out? >> yeah. guandique is really if you look at it from the other side of the fence there, he's just a vulnerable victim. he's a guy that, you know, he's poor, may, in fact, have a drug problem, lives around the park. he's the best person to nab when you arrest somebody who is essentially jobless years afterwards. of course, they're not going to be able to put together an alibi which this guy was unable to do. >> the crux of this case do, you think that may hold any
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weight with the jury here, that guandique is sitting in prison right now for very similar attacks and this one matches the m.o.? >> right. that's the danger. i mean i guess, brian, you'd be surprised. after 23 years of doing cases and doing blue collar cases, cases like this, there's a lot of people who have a lot of down and out problems in life that commit crimes like this and i think guandique just happened to be one of the people that got targeted by the police and then got tunnel vision. i do, in fact, see your point. i mean two similar type incidents very close in time and place can be compelling to a juror. >> we'll be watching. the jury gets the case tomorrow, thanks for coming in tonight. moving on to the third big story of the day, a huge revelation in that prince george's county corruption investigation. prosecutors told the court that wiretaps caught a from net liquor store owner and his wife talking about mill -- a prominent liquor store owner and his wife talking about
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millions of dollars, laundered cash bribes to officials. amrik singh melhi and his wife were two of several suspects rounded up in the corruption case of borges county executive jack johnson. at the heart of the scandal is a federal program called the home fund. johnson's accused of taking payments from developers so they could get federal money from that program. it's an initiative that's caused problems in prince george's county for some time now. fox 5's stacy cohen takes a closer look. >> reporter: mary hanlin is somewhat of an expert on home funds. she works for the national housing conference. >> the home program is very flexible and it's designed intentionally to be flexible so that communities can identify where their biggest needs are and so it can be used for rental housing, for homeownership, for new construction. the beauty of this program is very little of the money is set aside for just administration. it's really concrete dollars
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for housing. >> reporter: home program money has been used effectively in prince george's for renovations at places like these aging apartment buildings and $1 million was also put towards this senior citizen housing center built by the jericho church in landover. neither project is tied to the corruption case in prince george's county. however, according to the department of housing and urban development, hud, most of the federal dollars are wasted in prince george's. "over the past 10 years the county has expended only 58% of the home fund it received," said a hud document. it continues to say the agency met on numerous occasions with county officials trying to sort out whatever has gone wrong with managing the program. hud goes on to say prince george's has been among the worst performers in the home program which includes over 600 jurisdictions nationwide. according to federal authorities, part of what is wrong is public officials such
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as the recently arrested jack johnson have been accepting favors in exchange for these federal housing dollars and that say experts is troubling. >> these programs help the working poor. they help people who are living paycheck to paycheck and that the rental burden is so high that, you know, it's really a decision between buying food for your kid and paying your rent on time and somebody to be misusing those funds is a tragedy. breaking news right now about a popular caffeinated alcohol drink. you have seen it, heard about it lately, four loko. the company now says it will stop putting caffiene in its drinks. it's pulling the product off the market just as the fda was getting ready to ban it. the company blames a difficult and politically charged regulatory environment for the change. several college students have wound up in the hospital after drinking four loko which can contain up to 12% alcohol. critics say the drinks are dangerous because they make people feel more alert and able
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to handle tasks like driving. a murder mystery in the hills of tinseltown. coming up next the behind the scenes look at hollywood heavyweights who was killed in her car just hours after attending a movie premier. >> we're continuing to watch radar. we're seeing a line of gusty thunderstorms that are growing, especially just to the west of d.c. you can see this a little closer here. so a rumble of thunder still in the forecast overnight. i'll have the full details coming up later on the news edge. we'll be right back. this is fox 5 news edge at 11:00. 
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following a developing story in beverly hills. the publicist killed just hours after going to a star studded movie premier. ronnie chasen was shot in the chest several times still in her mercedes in sunset hd. it crashed into a light today -
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it crashed into a light pole. there were no threats that the police were aware of against chasen or her company. chasen had been at the premier of burlesque starring cher and christina aguilera. new developments today in the case of a murdered american university professor. 52-year-old sue ann marcum was found dead in her bethesda home last month. the next day 18-year-old deandre ham lynn was found driving her home -- hamlin was driving her mercedes. police called him a potential suspect in the murder but he has not been charged. coming up next the jack johnson arrest gets even the taiwanese cgi treatment, the cartoon that takes on the corruption scandal on the other side of the break, but first you seen this? a renegade bull jumps into the stands of a rodeo in canada this weekend. if it was california it would
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be a rodeo. the 1,600-pound animal shook its rider, jumped over the barrier into the stands, took a few minutes before the staff brought it under control, four people hurt, not surprisingly. the bull will not be returning to the rodeo.
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it's a no-brainer. [ man ] because now, with verizon fios, you don't have to sign a term contract. -really? -that's terrific! -did not know that. -i'm in. [ male announcer ] america spoke, verizon listened. switch to fios today, now with no term contract required. it's time for fios. call the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 800-974-6006 tty/v. tiger woods, brett favre, charlie sheen, they've all gotten the news animation treatment from the taiwanese company. now jack johnson and the prince george's corruption scandal are
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the latest targets. this video gets all the highlights in, the alleged bribes, the check worth 100 grand flushed down it the toilet, even the 80 grand stuffed into leslie johnson's bra. the animation gets most of the facts right, although it refers to jackson as county commissioner instead of executive. we've posted the entire video on in the hot topics section. always wonder how big stories like that get from your backyard all the way to taiwan. >> my goodness, yes. >> got another round of weather here on the radar. >> can see the radar back there. we're seeing a line of thunderstorms growing off to our west approaching leesburg. some of you will still get a rumble of thunder later tonight and we will show you that on radar coming up in a moment, but you can see the sky looks awfully murky and while most of the region is still dry, i think there's another round to go in the overnight hours and a dry morning commute but also a very gusty morning commute. that's what we're dealing with tonight.
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first stop radar so you can see that on the wider view not much going on for d.c., but all of these lines of showers are coming from south to north. some of them are getting a little stronger. you can see the first line out here just crossing interstate 81. these are moving north to northeast and another line getting closer now as we zoom in on loudoun county, a little west of leesburg. all of this will eventually move north and northeast, but the whole line will swing east through the district as we go through the overnight hours. you can also begin to see some of the severe thunderstorm warnings down to our south and a wider view on vipir shows you the tornado watch that is in effect for central virginia until 4:00 in the morning am we've got much stronger lines down -- morning. we've got much stronger lines down there, a lot of reports of wind damage down in that dream region. look how strong it is up into pen -- extreme region. look how strong it is up into northern pennsylvania. the severe risk will continue
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especially south of d.c. so if you're going to get some thunderstorms, we're a little bit more primed for that from the district on south and that risk will go through the overnight hours. you can see it temperatures down to the carolinas where they've also really been seeing quite a pounding tonight with these storms, but the other big story is how incredibly warm it is. we've gone up to 64 degrees at 11:00, up 1 degrees since last hour, most places in the low 60s. we do still think temperatures will drop quickly once the front comes through and it's just now approaching the mountains. you can see colder air behind it. all of that should swing through and drop temperatures closer to morning into the upper 50s. we've got a few more hours of real mild temperatures and the winds continuing to gust. they're still gusting to 26 at the top of the hour at reagan. wind advisories are posted for areas west of d.c. tomorrow, especially elevation based could see gusts of 50. that will take down trees as well and this warm wind will switch and come out of the west tomorrow. that will dry us out quickly.
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there's the center of our very impressive low pressure system. it will continue moving north and as it does so, the cool front will swing through in the overnight hours. here's what we're left with tomorrow. the low gets up into upstate new york and new england. the winds continue around it. so a bright day for us but very windy, temperatures in the low 60s and then for thursday it looks like we have some clouds that will come in. mostly we think it's going to be a dry day, just clouds and not looking like we'll be dealing with much in the way of rainfall. could there be a spotty shower here or there? i suppose, but more clouds than anything for thursday at 58 and then cooler for friday after a second front swings through thursday. we start moderating for the weekend and the weekend looks great and hope we'll live again for the redskins, but feldy's recapping what was ultimately a very shocking night last night out at fedex. we'll have more when we return.
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good evening. i'm dave feldman. no wall, no problem for the wiz tonight taking on the toronto raptors team that began and ended the day as the worst team in the east. wall sitting this one out with injuries. gilbert arenas skipped to make this his first start since january 5th. 1st half nick young misses. hilton armstrong does not. wizards led by seven at the break and the 3rd quarter was a good one for the team and specifically arenas who missed the first four games of the season with injuries but scored 10 of his 20 in the 3rd, made a
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couple three's. late 3rd quarter al thornton drives, finds armstrong for another dunk. he had 10 off the bench. wizards cruise past the raptors 109-94. john wall worried about losing his starting job? >> i talked to john yesterday and tried to explain to him who wally pipp was. he wasn't really sure and he wasn't sure. >> turns out donovan mcnabb's $40 million guaranteed five year contract extension is not what we thought it was. mcnabb will earn 3.75 million this season, but the skins have the option of releasing him after the season and then paying him nothing more. if they keep him, he gets a $10 million bonus the following year. he should have received 10 million for having to sit through last night. if you arrived late, you missed the 1st quarter and the first play of the 2nd quarter, then you missed 35 eagles points.
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the first play from scrimmage 88 yards. philly racked up 592 total yards to win by 31 points and they did it all on monday night football to a team that had had two weeks to prepare. >> any time you're embarrassed it's tough to take, especially when you work so hard to win within the division. you went out there and they come in here and make some big plays right away and all of a sudden they're about 250, 300 yards in the 1st quarter. that doesn't happen very often, especially with our football team. >> the nfl is looking into eagles center mike mcgiven's accusations that redskins safety laron landry spit at him. an nfl spokesman said tuesday the leaguing which is for video evidence any time there's a report of a player spitting on another player. mcglenn said he spit at him twice. landry denied it saying i'm
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aggressive but i'm not that type of player. college hoops, virginia tech on the road at kansas state. 2nd half hokies down 5. malcomb delaney hits a three pointer cutting the deficit to two. kansas state would pull away going on a 28-9 run. jacob pullen with the lob of jamar samuels. hokies suffered their first loss falling to third ranked k state 73-57. women's hoops, georgetown against maryland. sugar rogers scored a game high 21. hoyas defeat the terrapins 53- 45. the steelers signed former redskin kicker shawn suisan and the redskins get back to work tomorrow preparing for a game with the titans. more with the edge right after
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this. here's to the believers.
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taking the edge off with an astounding accomplishment by a band that broke up in 1970. the beatles finally landed on itunes this morning. i know you've heard all the buzz,