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Published Sep. 21, 2009


A man who once claimed he fathered the child of John Edwards' mistress now says in a book proposal that the former presidential candidate is the baby's father. The New York Times reported Saturday that Edwards asked his campaign finance chairman to hide the paternity of Rielle Hunter's child. The claims are in a book proposal by former Edwards aide Andrew Young. Young wrote that Edwards told Hunter they would marry after Edwards' wife died, the New York Times reported. His wife, Elizabeth, has cancer. Edwards has denied he fathered the child. He has acknowledged federal investigators are looking into his campaign funds.


Religious right picks Huckabee

A straw vote suggests former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is a favorite among religious conservatives to be president in 2012. In the vote Saturday at the annual Values Voter Summit, about one-third of the 1,800 attendees cast ballots. Huckabee led with 28 percent. Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind. tied with about 12 percent each. The top issues listed were abortion, protection of religious liberties, same-sex marriage and tax cuts.


Union was wary of escape risk

Two days after an insane killer escaped from a field trip organized by his mental hospital, the union that represents mental hospital workers said it had become concerned about the type of patients allowed to participate in such outings. Police continued to search Saturday for 47-year-old Philip Arnold Paul, who walked away from the Spokane County Fair during an outing Thursday with 30 other Eastern State Hospital patients. Paul was acquitted by reason of insanity in the 1987 slaying of an elderly woman.


Arrests expected in terror case

Federal authorities were preparing Saturday night to file criminal charges against a 24-year-old Denver shuttle bus driver and two others as part of a federal terrorism investigation stretching from New York to Colorado to overseas, government officials said. The news came on a day of dizzying twists after the shuttle driver, Najibullah Zazi, declined to sit for a fourth day of intense questioning by FBI agents in Denver, choosing instead to consult with his lawyer. In addition to Zazi, at least one other man in Denver and one in New York were expected to be facing charges, officials said. The identities of the two men were not clear. The criminal complaint was expected to charge the men with crimes other than terrorism, such as lying to the government.


Suit: Drinking of blood ordered

A former track athlete at Central Connecticut State University has sued the school, saying a coach forced him to drink blood as a "tribal ritual." The lawsuit filed this week by Kenyan Charles Ngetich claims that in 2005, track coach George Kawecki told Ngetich he'd seen a documentary in which a Kenyan group drank blood, and he wanted Ngetich to drink it. Ngetich refused, but claims Kawecki later gave him a cup of blood and demanded he drink it, which Ngetich did.


Al Capone's hideout for sale

The buyer of a scenic property in northern Wisconsin will get more than just its bar and restaurant. Also included is a former hideout of Chicago mobster Al Capone. The 407-acre wooded site, complete with guard towers and a stone house with 18-inch-thick walls, will soon go on the auction block at a starting bid of $2.6 million. The bank that foreclosed on the land near Couderay, about 140 miles northeast of Minneapolis, said Capone owned it in the late 1920s and early 1930s.


Men leap to safety, dog hangs

Police say two men escaped a gang of armed robbers by jumping out a second-story window, but a pit bull died after it leaped after its owner and hanged itself from its chain. Police say the pit bull had been chained up in the Bronx living room early Friday when three armed men broke down the door. No arrests were made.


Police: Boy, 4, shared cocaine

New Jersey police say a 4-year-old boy shared cocaine with his friends at day care because his father told him it was candy. Shaheed Wright, 25, put several bags of cocaine inside his son's jacket after police nearly caught him with it, police said. The boy shared the drugs with three other 4-year-olds at his day care center Friday. A teacher noticed and called authorities. The children were not hurt but Wright was charged with four counts of child endangerment and drug offenses.

Mount Vernon, Wash.

NAACP protests Beck honor

The NAACP has added its voice to those against Mayor Bud Norris' decision to present commentator Glenn Beck a key to the city next Saturday and proclaim "Glenn Beck Day." The Snohomish County Chapter of the NAACP president, Janice R. Greene, said of the Fox News personality: "Holding him up in honor stimulates the worst impulses of human nature and makes a mockery of our nation's values."

Times wires