National briefs (11/7/12)

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Shooter kills 2, self at plant

FRESNO, Calif. -- A parolee who killed two people and wounded two others on Tuesday at a chicken processing plant where he worked moved methodically between his first three victims, putting a handgun against their head or neck before pulling the trigger, police said.

Lawrence Jones shot Fatima Lopez, 32, in the back as she tried to flee, then put the gun to the head of Estevan Catano and pulled the trigger but was out of bullets, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said.

Jones, 42, then went outside the Valley Protein plant, where he reloaded his gun, shot himself and died later at a hospital, the chief said.

The victims inside the plant did not hear the shooter because it was loud and at least some of them wore noise protectors, Chief Dyer said.

Ex-dean found dead

NEW YORK -- A former dean of St. John's University who had been accused of stealing more than $1 million from the school was found dead in her home on Tuesday morning from an apparent suicide, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

The dean, Cecilia Chang, was found inside her home in the New York City borough of Queens, said the person, who was not authorized to speak publicly about the episode. It was unclear how Ms. Chang died or who found her.

Her death comes in the midst of her trial, in which, in addition to being accused of stealing money from St. John's, she was also accused of using students as her personal servants.

On Monday, Ms. Chang had taken the stand in her own defense in an effort to rebut the prosecution's presentation that depicted her as a thief who was fueled by greed.

Movie brews a storm

ST. LOUIS -- Anheuser-Busch InBev, which makes America's No. 1-selling beer, Budweiser, is riled about the role its brew has in the new film "Flight," which stars Denzel Washington as a pilot whose drinking habits become an issue in the aftermath of a plane crash.

The brewer asked the film's backer, Paramount Pictures, to blur or remove its famous logo from the movie when it is released on DVD, television and made available for streaming, said a person familiar with the situation who was unwilling to speak publicly on the issue.

Anheuser-Busch said Tuesday that it received no advance notice from Paramount that its product would be appearing in the film. Paramount declined to elaborate on the matter. Other liquors, including vodka brands Stolichnaya, Smirnoff and Absolut, also are featured in the movie.

Puritanical punishment?

CLEVELAND -- A woman caught on camera driving on a sidewalk to avoid a Cleveland school bus that was unloading children will have to stand at an intersection wearing a sign warning about idiots.

Court records show a Cleveland Municipal Court judge on Monday ordered Shena Hardin, 32, to stand at an intersection for two days next week.

Also in the nation ...

An early morning fire Tuesday in a sixth-floor, acute-care room at Durham Regional Hospital in Durham, N.C., killed one patient. ... House lawmakers have issued a subpoena for the director of the Massachusetts pharmacy linked to the deadly meningitis outbreak. Barry Cadden, co-founder of New England Compounding Center, had indicated through his lawyer that he would not voluntarily attend a congressional hearing scheduled for Nov. 14, the Energy and Commerce Committee said Tuesday.

-- Compiled from news services



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