VIRGINIA BRIEFING

VIRGINIA BRIEFING

Friday, September 1, 2006

SENATE RACE

Webb Puts Family Before Parade

U.S. Senate candidate James Webb said yesterday that he will miss the Labor Day parade Monday that marks the traditional start of the state's election season because he will be spending time with his son before he is deployed to Iraq.

Webb has been wearing combat boots on the campaign trail in honor of his son, also named James, who is a Marine. The candidate said he will be back on the campaign trail "24-7" after his son leaves.

The Labor Day parade, held in the tiny town of Buena Vista, is an annual gathering of elected officials and political hopefuls. This year, Webb's opponent, Sen. George Allen (R), will attend, as will Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) and former governor Mark R. Warner (D).

-- Michael D. Shear

CRIME

2 Teens to Be Charged as Adults

Two 16-year-olds accused of leading a gang-related shooting rampage that critically wounded a Sterling man in July will be charged as adults, and three other youths have pleaded guilty in the case, Loudoun County officials said yesterday.

The two 16-year-olds, arrested last month, are accused of firing a barrage of bullets into five Sterling homes. A 47-year-old man was injured when he was struck by a stray bullet. Seven homes were damaged in the July 19 shootings.

An 11-year-old and a 16-year-old pleaded guilty in juvenile court Wednesday to breaking into a Sterling home and stealing the guns used in the shootings. A 17-year-old pleaded guilty to burglarizing a home and stealing the keys to a 1997 Toyota Corolla used in the rampage. Sentencing hearings for the three, who were charged as juveniles, are scheduled for this month.

The two 16-year-olds to be charged as adults were being held without bond at the Loudoun County Juvenile Detention Center. They are charged with malicious wounding, five counts of shooting into an occupied building and one count of arson. Their names are being withheld until they are formally charged as adults, said Loudoun sheriff's spokesman Kraig Troxell.


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