National briefs: Respected Rabbi accused of road rage

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MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- Some drivers in the suburbs north of New York City were startled when they saw a man waving his arms, honking his horn and flashing a silver badge in a frantic effort to get them to pull over in traffic.

Even more surprising was who was suspected of doing it: a respected rabbi.

Rabbi Alfredo Borodowski has been arrested in one case and is being investigated in at least two more in which authorities say the apparent reason for trying to pull people over was to rage at them for cutting him off or driving too slowly.

"That girl was driving too slow and I hate when people do this," Rabbi Borodowski, 49, told investigators after he was charged with impersonating a police officer in June, when he allegedly pulled his Camry alongside a woman's car in Mamaroneck, flashed a badge and shouted: "Police! Police! Pull over!"

Lawyer Andrew Rubin acknowledged that the rabbi's behavior has been "manic" and said he's suffering from bipolar disorder. The lawyer said the rabbi will plead not guilty in court this week. A previous hearing was postponed because the rabbi was hospitalized.

Death penalty at issue

FORT HOOD, Texas -- Prosecutors asked Monday that three Army officers be dismissed as potential jurors in the murder trial of the Fort Hood shooting suspect because of their views on the death penalty.

Six potential jurors -- four colonels and two lieutenant colonels -- were brought in from Army posts nationwide and overseas as questioning continued in the court-martial of Maj. Nidal Hasan. The Army psychiatrist faces execution or life in prison without parole if convicted in the 2009 rampage that left 13 dead and nearly three dozen wounded on the Texas Army post.

Two of those officers indicated they opposed the death penalty, while a third said he strongly favored it. Prosecutors want all three tossed from the jury pool.

Gay marriage foes lose bid

SAN FRANCISCO -- The California Supreme Court on Monday refused to halt same-sex marriages while the justices consider the latest bid by Proposition 8's backers to revive the state's ban on same-sex nuptials.

In a one-line order, the Supreme Court without comment denied a request to immediately block county clerks from issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. The court will now proceed to consider's broader legal argument that Proposition 8 should remain in force in California.

Proposition 8's defenders maintain a federal judge's 2010 ruling striking down the law only applied to the two couples, and two counties (Alameda and Los Angeles) involved in the legal fight.

Data: IRS eyed both sides

WASHINGTON -- The House oversight committee's top Democrat released new documents Friday that he said show that the Internal Revenue Service targeted both liberal and conservative groups for additional scrutiny during the 2010 and 2012 election cycles.

Rep. Elijah Cummings, Md., said in a letter to the committee's chairman that congressional investigators have discovered training materials from a July 2010 "screening workshop" that prove IRS agents were told to be on the lookout for names that look like "tea party," "patriots," "9/12 Project" and "progressive."

It noted that such groups "may be more than 50% political," which could disqualify them from tax-exempt status.



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