ABC7 WEATHER: Partly sunny with highs in the mid 80s. http://wj.la/72e8x6
‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – Hearing set for D.C. cop Calvin Willis; Wizards return home; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.
ALEXIS MURPHY: Abductor convicted of murder, per the (Lynchburg) News & Advance, “Randy Allen Taylor sat quietly in the Nelson County courtroom as the verdict was read - guilty of first-degree murder in the commission of an abduction and abduction with intent to defile in connection with the disappearance of 17-year-old Alexis Murphy. The Shipman teen disappeared on Aug. 3. Her body has not been found.
“In the sentencing portion of the hearing, Murphy's mother, Laura Murphy, cried as she described what the last nine months has been like without her daughter and a frustrated Taylor whispered to his attorney he no longer wanted to be in the courtroom. Before Circuit Court Judge J. Michael Gamble could respond to the request, Taylor darted from his seat and walked quickly towards the exit door without a glance at Murphy's family. Nelson County Sheriff David Brooks stood in his path and grabbed his arm to escort Taylor from the courtroom. He did not reappear for the remainder of Thursday's proceedings, which lasted roughly half an hour.” http://bit.ly/1kRw9lK
LOOKING GOOD: Like a Hollywood star, per the Baltimore Sun, “Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown’s campaign insists he’s no diva. Bringing his own makeup artist to last night’s televised debate was part of his pre-game prep.
Before the three Democrat candidates went on stage for the first televised debate hosted by NBC, the network offered to lend their makeup artists to the candidates. Both Gansler and Mizeur accepted but according to a copy of the pre-debate schedule obtained by The Sun, Brown “will do his own make-up.” In fact, Brown has his own makeup person, whom the campaign hired for other photo shoots and television ads and brought to the University of Maryland College Park Wednesday night to get Brown ready for the bright lights.” http://bsun.md/RwPVuc
HER SIDE: Of the story, per the Washington Post, “The veteran D.C. fire lieutenant who retired after being accused of failing to help a dying man outside her station in January said Thursday that help had arrived by the time she first knew someone was in distress.
“The sequence contradicts a timeline provided by the fire department that indicates Kellene Davis did not react quickly when a colleague told her that a man had fallen across the street from the station on Rhode Island Avenue in Northeast Washington’s Brookland neighborhood. Davis, in her first interview since 77-year-old Medric “Cecil” Mills Jr. died of a heart attack Jan. 25, also said she had no idea that at least two people had banged on the firehouse doors seeking help and had been turned away by a trainee who told them, incorrectly, that nothing could be done until they called 911.” http://wapo.st/1ixDsfJ
VIRGINIA SLAVERY MUSEUM: Of a slippery site, per the Virginian-Pilot, “Former Virginia governor L. Douglas Wilder has opened a new chapter in his bid to establish a slavery museum by proposing as its home a site in downtown Richmond – but he did so without giving stakeholders or the property owner much of a heads up. The governor’s latest proposal for his long-dreamed-of National Slavery Museum puts him at odds with Richmond leaders who have other commemorative plans.
“Speaking Thursday, Wilder said his goal is to move the project along however he can: “It isn’t about me. It is about a forgotten history that America can ill-afford to forget.” The nation’s first black elected governor pitched the historic First African Baptist Church at 14th and Broad streets. Problem is, the property that housed the church founded in 1841 now is home to a Virginia Commonwealth University medical school program that trains lab scientists. It’s set up more as a teaching environment than a place for exhibits.” http://bit.ly/1uIT3CT
BOKO HARAM: And the blame game, per the New York Times, “The abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria has led to new scrutiny of the United States’ counterterrorism strategy toward Boko Haram during Hillary Rodham Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state. At the heart of the issue is a debate carried out within the Obama administration on whether it was time to officially designate the group as a “foreign terrorist organization.”
“Republican lawmakers assert that the delay in making that designation shows that Mrs. Clinton was not firm enough in dealing with Boko Haram. But some former officials say that the issue is being politicized because of Mrs. Clinton’s status as a likely presidential candidate. The debate took place in 2011 and 2012 amid mounting concern about the group’s attacks.” http://nyti.ms/1jGM5cI
BULLDOGS: But off the field. . ., per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Jonas Jennings was Jim Donnan’s first recruit in 1996 and said the former Georgia football coach “became like a father figure” as he played for the Bulldogs over the next five years. But Jennings said he felt betrayed after losing most of $800,000 in investments that Donnan encouraged him to make and took the stand as a prosecution witness on Thursday.
“Former UGA linebacker Kendrell Bell followed Jennings to the stand as the fraud trial against Donnan concluded its third day in U.S. District Court. Bell said he lost $2 million he invested through his former coach. Both men have recovered portions losses through Donnan’s bankruptcy proceedings.” http://bit.ly/1mHKcA1
BENGHAZI: And so it goes, per The Hill, “The House on Thursday voted 232-186 to create a select committee to investigate the 2012 attack that killed four Americans at a diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya. The move to create the panel was supported by only 7 Democrats, setting the stage for what will likely be a contentious investigation this summer. Democrats are debating whether to boycott the panel altogether.
“Republicans said creating a special panel was necessary to determine whether the administration painted a false narrative about the Benghazi attack to protect President Obama’s foreign policy record as he ran for a second term. The seven Democrats who voted in favor of the Benghazi probe were Reps. Ron Barber (Ariz.), John Barrow (Ga.), Mike McIntyre (N.C.), Patrick Murphy (Fla.), Collin Peterson (Minn.), Nick Rahall (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.). All of them serve in districts that lean Republican, and six are facing tough reelection races.” http://bit.ly/1j97kiD
POLITICO PLAY: “The Koch brothers’ main political arm intends to spend more than $125 million this year on an aggressive ground, air and data operation benefiting conservatives, according to a memo distributed to major donors and sources familiar with the group. The projected budget for Americans for Prosperity would be unprecedented for a private political group in a midterm, and would likely rival even the spending of the Republican and Democratic parties’ congressional campaign arms.” http://politi.co/1mHNa7L
THE BARRYS: Hmmmm, per City Paper, “Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry's son Christopher Barry was arrested downtown last Friday after allegedly driving under the influence of drugs, court records show. A Metropolitan Police Department officer also allegedly discovered synthetic marijuana in Barry's car.
“Barry, 33, has been charged with operating a vehicle while impaired, driving under the influence, and operating a vehicle on a suspended or revoked license. The arrest could jeopardize what's rumored to be the elder Barry's plan, in the face of his own poor health, to arrange for his son to succeed him on the D.C. Council.” http://bit.ly/1j33NZd
TRANSIT: Or not, per Gazette.Net, “Officials are scheduled to meet Monday for a discussion on the future of the Silver Spring Transit Center and how to make repairs to the long-delayed structure. For now, no one knows for sure when the facility will open.
“Representatives from KCE, the contracting firm hired by the county, and Parsons Brinckerhoff, the engineering firm on the project, will meet Monday to finalize a plan for the transit center in downtown Silver Spring. Staff from the county and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority also are expected to attend.” http://bit.ly/1ouWQiA
BIG BOND: Just the facts, per the Loudoun Times-Mirror, “The Loudoun County Circuit Court has granted the Ashburn man accused of killing his estranged wife in March a $2 million bond.
“Braulio M. Castillo, 43, was granted a $2 million bond by Judge Burke McCahill. However, Castillo is still subject to electronic monitoring and supervision and may not leave the state. He was also required to surrender his passport and may not discuss the case with his children, who have been living with family friends since their mother’s death and father’s arrest.” http://bit.ly/1s9mqKw
TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “The Metro board budget committee has approved $1.8 million towards improving crowd congestion at WMATA's two busiest stations: Union Station and Gallery Place.” http://wj.la/1uHAyP7
NEWSTALK: 10 a.m., NewsChannel 8.