Police Investigate Slaying of Teenager

A 16-year-old youth was found fatally shot early yesterday near his home in the Congress Heights section of Southeast Washington, police said.

Police identified the victim as Marcus Brooks, of the 1500 block of Congress Place SE. At 2:30 a.m., officers on patrol found Brooks lying in the street in the 3100 block of Robinson Street SE, said Sgt. C.V. Morris of the 7th District. The youth, who had been shot several times, was pronounced dead at 3:37 a.m., Morris said.

A 17-year-old friend, who did not want to be identified, said the had attended Malcolm X Elementary School.

Police were still investigating the shooting yesterday and declined to discuss a possible motive.

Protesters Climb Monument Scaffold

Three animal-rights advocates climbed about 60 feet up the scaffolding around the Washington Monument yesterday afternoon and unfurled a banner protesting research on primates by the National Institutes of Health.

The three men scaled a fence and then ran along the roof of the construction walkway leading to the monument before climbing up the scaffolding, witnesses said. U.S. Park Police officers brought the men down and charged them with unlawful entry, a misdemeanor, and resisting arrest, a felony, said Lt. David Mulholland of the U.S. Park Police.

Police identified the three men arrested as Michael Brasselle, Leslie J. Pickering and Jon Batchelor, all 21. Police said the men reported area addresses, but other protesters said they are from Washington state and Oregon.

One man handcuffed himself to the scaffolding, and the other two did not comply with orders to come down, Mulholland said. The three were held pending a court appearance Tuesday.

The protest came on the final day of a Primate Freedom Tour that began June 1 in Seattle and ended yesterday on the National Mall. Members of the Coalition to End Primate Experimentation, which organized the tour, visited 25 facilities across the United States that use primates for biomedical research.


Mechanicsville Teenager Dies in Crash

A 17-year-old girl was killed Friday night when she lost control of the car she was driving, crossed the center line and struck a tree in northwestern St. Mary's County, Maryland State Police said.

Lia Nichele Dadamo, of Mechanicsville, was pronounced dead on the scene.

According to police, she was driving west on Mount Wolf Road near Iroquois Lane in Charlotte Hall about 11:20 p.m. when she lost control of the car, swerved across the center line and then back to the right side before striking a tree.

State Has Plan to Improve Math Education

State officials concerned about flagging math scores in Maryland plan to change the way math is taught to young children.

A statewide initiative called "Keys to Math Success" will change the way math is taught in kindergarten through third grade, said Maryland Superintendent of Schools Nancy S. Grasmick.

The program also would improve teacher training in math and would encourage principals to come up with new ways of teaching it in their schools.

Math scores for fifth-graders on the Maryland School Performance Assessment Program's annual exams have remained virtually unchanged, while students in the third and eighth grades showed only marginal improvement.


Arlington Teen Dies of Gunshot Wounds

A 17-year-old youth was fatally shot Friday night, Arlington County police said yesterday.

Michael Bates was found about 11:15 p.m. Friday in the 3400 block of South 24th Street suffering from multiple wounds, police said. They said he was from Arlington but they had no address for him. He was pronounced dead at Washington Hospital Center.

Police have no motive or suspect in the slaying, the fourth in Arlington County this year.

High Lead Levels Close Playgrounds

All playgrounds at the 18 elementary schools in Portsmouth have been declared off-limits to children until their soil and equipment can be tested for lead.

Testing is expected to begin this week, according to a school official. With schools opening Tuesday, teachers will provide recreational activities similar to those used during bad weather.

Playgrounds at three elementary schools---Brighton, Park View and Westhaven--have been closed since August, when school officials became aware of earlier tests showing elevated lead levels in the paint and soil.

Lead in the blood can cause learning difficulties and developmental delays in children.


Salt-Related Power Outages Reported

Conectiv Power Co. continued yesterday to hose down electrical substations and power lines on the Maryland, Virginia and Delaware coasts after winds from Tropical Storm Dennis left behind a thick layer of salt, causing outages for thousands of customers.

Jay Mason, a spokesman for Conectiv, said the problem was better than it had been on Thursday and Friday.

"We're in really good shape today," he said. "We have no major outages."

Conectiv supplies power to about 1 million customers on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and Virginia and in Delaware and southern New Jersey.

About 7,500 customers were without power in Ocean City for five hours on Friday, as Conectiv crews turned off the electricity to wash the salt-encrusted lines. An additional 4,000 were without power because of problems caused by the salt buildup. Nearly 6,500 customers also lost power last week in Chincoteague.


"If your name isn't something like O'Brien, it doesn't mean you don't have Irish in you."

--Lily Smigen-Rothkopf, 13, an award-winning harpist from Silver Spring, whose interest in the music led her parents to dig into their family backgrounds.