ABC7 WEATHER: Sunny with highs near 70. http://wj.la/72e8x6
‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the stories – Possible fire blows out electricity transformers in Old Town Alexandria; Saudi compound investigation continues with suspected human trafficking; Capitals Game 1 playoff preview; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m.
VIRGINIA BEACH OCEANFRONT VIOLENCE: Citizens express concerns, per the Virginian-Pilot, “More than 700 people packed a town hall meeting Wednesday night following a weekend of violence at the Oceanfront, many expressing concern for their safety and asking the city to take extra precautions and increase security for future events.Several residents said they have children who are afraid to go to the Oceanfront because of violence. One woman asked: How is the city going to recover from this?
“We’ve got to do this together,” said City Councilman John Moss. “… It is not the end of Virginia Beach. It is not the end of a vibrant resort.” Hosted by Councilman Bill DeSteph at the Virginia Beach Convention Center, the meeting gave people a chance to ask questions after a weekend that resulted in three shootings, three stabbings, 148 arrests and 325 calls to the city’s emergency dispatch from 6 p.m. Saturday to 6 a.m. Sunday.” http://bit.ly/ZXWEzD
GUILTY: Of a brutal beating, per the Washington Post, “After less than six hours of deliberations, a D.C. Superior Court jury found a Fort Washington man guilty Wednesday on all counts in the brutal beating and robbery of Thomas C. Maslin last summer on Capitol Hill. Tommy Branch, 22, faced a variety of charges, including aggravated assault and robbery, in the early-morning attack Aug. 18 in a tiny park near Eastern Market.
“Branch and two friends allegedly beat Maslin and robbed him of his iPhone, credit cards and keys about 12:30 a.m. as he walked home after having beers with friends following a Nationals baseball game.” http://wapo.st/10XEwYm
MARATHON BOMBINGS: Three more arrests, per the Boston Globe, “Two men from Kazakhstan and a man from Cambridge were arrested and charged today in the Boston Marathon bombings investigation, federal prosecutors said. Azamat Tazhayakov and Dias Kadyrbayev, both 19 and of New Bedford, were charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice by plotting to dispose of a laptop computer and a backpack containing fireworks belonging to bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the US attorney’s office said in a statement.
“Robel Phillipos, 19, of Cambridge was charged with making false statements to law enforcement officials in a terrorism investigation, prosecutors said. All three were, or had been, students at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, where Tsarnaev, 19, was also a student.” http://bo.st/Ymx4Vf
INSIDE A JAIL: Not pretty, per the Baltimore Sun, “With the state corrections system already under scrutiny, the Maryland Board of Public Works on Wednesday approved a $40,000 settlement with a former inmate of the Baltimore jail who claimed he was assaulted by gang members for not assisting with a drug dealing operation. The inmate, who filed the lawsuit under the alias Michael Smith, said a correctional officer at the Baltimore City Detention Center connected to the Bloods gang allowed another prisoner to unlock himself and beat Smith while he remained in restraints in a van.” http://bsun.md/11CMy41
SILVER SPRING: Transit Center saga continues, per Gazette.Net, “Montgomery County plans to continue pushing through with remediation work at the Silver Spring Transit Center, despite receiving a letter saying the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority was backing out of the project. Wednesday’s briefing was the second update from the executive branch to the county council on the progress of the project. County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) did not attend the meeting.” http://bit.ly/ZYIe29
R-RATED PILL: That’s the plan, anyway, per the New York Times, “The Obama administration moved Wednesday to keep girls under 15 from having over-the-counter access to morning-after pills, as the Justice Department filed a notice to appeal a judge’s order that would make the drug available without a prescription for girls and women of all ages. The appeal reaffirms an election-year decision by Mr. Obama’s administration to block the drug’s maker from selling it without a prescription or consideration of age, and puts the White House back into the politically charged issue of access to emergency contraception.” http://nyti.ms/16qaQUC
POLITICO PLAY: “More people disapprove than approve of the way President Obama is handling immigration and guns, according to a new poll by Quinnipiac University. Fifty percent don’t like the way he is handling immigration policy, comparedwitho 40 percent who do, the poll found. That negative rating is due in large part to independents, 55 percent of whom disapprove of his handling of the issue. Only 34 percent approve.” http://politi.co/11D8Sut
SAUDI SEX RING?: Well, it’s still murky, per ABC7 – WJLA, “Authorities say they are investigating allegations of sex trafficking after they removed two women from a Northern Virginia property owned by Saudi Arabia. A police source tells ABC7 two women were rescued from the property Tuesday around noon. They are both from the Philippines and were allegedly being held against their will.” http://wj.la/10tgmO4
D.C. WEED: Hard to get, per City Paper, “. . . The rules governing who can purchase and use medical marijuana in D.C. are notably restrictive: If you don’t have cancer, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, or multiple sclerosis or aren’t undergoing chemotherapy, radiation, or using protease inhibitors, don’t bother trying yet. When it comes to qualifying conditions, D.C. is among the strictest of the 19 jurisdictions that have legalized medical marijuana in the United States.” http://bit.ly/ZXsWed
SOBERING STATS: Just the facts, per the Washington Examiner, “More than half of new D.C. mothers are unmarried, more than any state in the nation, according to census data released Wednesday. Nearly 51 percent of women in the District between the ages of 15 and 50 who gave birth in the past year did so without being married, just beating out Louisiana at 49 percent and Mississippi and New Mexico at 48 percent.” http://bit.ly/10XlpxK
END OF THE LINE: Finally, per the Washington Times, “For a man who once faced life in prison, 15 years is a pretty good deal. Antoine Jones, a onetime D.C. nightclub owner whose drug conspiracy case resulted in a landmark ruling by the Supreme Court regarding the government’s use of GPS tracking, was facing a fourth trial in the case when he pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in the District. As part of the plea agreement, U.S. District Court Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle sentenced Jones to 15 years in prison.” http://bit.ly/11Y4eaM
FACEBOOK FOLLY: Or something like that, per the Los Angeles Times, “Mark Zuckerberg is the public face of one of the world's most prominent companies. But now it's his actions as a private citizen that are making him — and Facebook Inc. — a target of environmentalists and progressive activists, highlighting the pitfalls of political involvement at a level rarely attempted in Silicon Valley.
“The 28-year-old billionaire co-founder and chief executive of Facebook has funded a political advocacy group called Fwd.us that has come under fire for spending millions on television ads that support expansion of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline and oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.” http://lat.ms/14XUq6j
SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Nationals beat Atlanta 2-0.
RED TAXIS: No more mellow yellow, per DCist, “Deep red with a gray swoosh. That's how the D.C. Taxicab Commission will propose the city's taxicabs be painted as they transition to a fleet-wide color scheme over the next several years. After hinting at the new design earlier this week, the commission published mockups of how five vehicle models will appear painted according to the new design. Cabs will be predominantly red, with curved and narrowing gray stripes that jut out of the front wheels and arc over the rear wheels.” http://bit.ly/160rZEK
NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is D.C. Councilman Jack Evans, who will be asked about the search for a new CFO, the city's new Medicaid contract, 2014 and more.