Man Charged in Fairfax Carjacking

A Seat Pleasant man is being held without bond on carjacking and other charges after an incident Friday night in the Woodlawn area of Fairfax during which a woman's car was taken and she was dragged for a short distance, Fairfax County police said yesterday.

Charles A. Henderson, 35, of the 500 block of 69th Place, was arrested shortly after the 7:30 p.m. incident as he sped in the woman's Nissan through an intersection on Richmond Highway and hit three cars, police said. He also was charged with speeding to elude officers, reckless driving, driving on a suspended license and malicious wounding.

The incident began about 7:20 p.m., when a 20-year-old Woodlawn woman saw a man getting into her car as she was paying an attendant for gas at a Chevron station. Thinking her 4-year-old daughter was still in the back seat, the woman ran outside and tried to open the driver's-side door. A struggle ensued and the car took off, dragging the woman a short distance. As she fell to the ground, she noticed her child was standing by the gas pump.

The woman was treated for abrasions on her leg and released.

Police in the area stopped Henderson after the car he was driving crashed into three others at a red light. One person involved in the crash was taken to Inova Mount Vernon Hospital and treated for minor injuries.

Drunken-Driving Suspect Killed by Police

A sheriff's deputy shot a man to death late Friday near Ashland, north of Richmond, after stopping him on suspicion of drunken driving, chasing him into woods and struggling with him, police said.

Thomas Allen Figg, 35, of Hanover County, was killed shortly before midnight, according to a statement issued yesterday by Hanover County Sheriff V. Stuart Cook.

Cook said the deputy, whose name has not been released, is a three-year veteran of the department and has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.

Bounties Placed on Marauding Coyotes

County governments in southwestern Virginia say they have had enough of livestock-slaughtering coyotes, and they have placed bounties on the wild animals.

Some officials oppose the move, saying the coyotes could be trapped and destroyed through a U.S. Department of Agriculture program, but many governments aren't waiting. They say too many farmers have been put out of business by coyotes with an appetite for livestock.

Lee and Scott counties adopted ordinances last year permitting the killing of coyotes. Tazewell County adopted one this year, and Buchanan County is expected to follow suit today.

All the counties have set the bounty at $50 to avoid bidding wars.

According to the Agriculture Department, coyotes killed 448 sheep, 67 calves and 249 goats on farms receiving help through its statewide trapping program in fiscal 1999. Bounty hunters killed 3,739 coyotes in Virginia during fiscal 1998, up from 2,717 kills in fiscal 1997.

Legislator's Absence Spurs Speculation

U.S. Rep. Virgil Goode Jr. (D) failed to attend a key Democratic fund-raising dinner in Farmville in his 5th District, sparking speculation that he may be preparing to leave the Democratic Party.

The Jefferson-Jackson Day dinner Friday night was "the premier fund-raising event for the year for this [5th District] committee," said Craig Bieber, executive director of the Virginia Democratic Party.

There has been speculation that Goode might bolt the party since he angered voters in his rural Southside district by joining four other House Democrats in voting to impeach President Clinton.

Goode could not be reached for comment yesterday.


Man Found Dead in Laurel Had Been Shot

The body of a man who apparently had been shot was found early yesterday along a road in Laurel, police said.

Laurel police said officers responding to a telephoned report found the man about 1:30 a.m. in the 7100 block of Van Dusen Road. They said it appeared that he had been shot in the neck.

Police said they believed the man was about 20 years old. They said they were withholding his name until his relatives could be notified.

State's Lead-Poisoning Cases Targeted

After a bureaucratic foul-up in Annapolis that cut funding for measures to rid buildings of lead paint, Gov. Parris N. Glendening (D) and Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley (D) said they will work to reduce the number of lead-poisoning cases in the state, which officials say far exceed the national average.

The joint plan would enforce laws to prevent lead-paint poisoning, which strikes more than 7,000 children a year in Baltimore.

Glendening's budget left Baltimore's Health Department with just $500,000 for an already minimal staff of six lead inspectors.

"The governor is already looking at ways to increase that funding, and increase it substantially," said Glendening spokesman Michael Morrill. "And soon, not next year."

Maryland's children are poisoned by lead paint at a rate more than four times the national average, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Eighty-five percent of the Maryland children exposed each year live in Baltimore.

Lead poisoning impairs nerve and brain development and has been linked to higher incidences of suicide, criminal behavior, delinquency and poor academic performance in children.


Unidentified Woman Killed by Gunfire

An unidentified woman was found dead of gunshot wounds to her head and upper body at Eighth and Tuckerman streets NW early yesterday, police said.

The woman, whose body was found at 12:46 a.m., was pronounced dead at the scene and was transported to the medical examiner's office.


"They can say a hundred things, but if they don't walk the talk, it's not worth much. I can honestly say I don't think they were committed to it."

-- Tom Johnson, general in the Maryland National Guard and director of the state's Selective Service, about failures in the Virginia Guard to translate its policy of equal opportunity into promotions for black members.