Sex Offender Hit Gaps in Registries

Cases Against Man Failed to Reach Web Sites

National child safety experts say the case of Thomas Richard Koucky underscores a problem with sex offender registries.

Koucky, 41, was arrested in Guatemala and returned to face charges in Arlington of molesting a 17-year-old youth. Despite charges or convictions against him in Florida, Frederick County and Charles County -- all allegedly involving improper contact with children -- Koucky did not appear on any of the sex offender registries available to residents of Maryland, Virginia or the District.

Some experts say as many as 30 percent of sex offenders never register, and up to 40 percent who do give a fake address.

Sailing Closer to the Harbor

Pr. George's Backs Measures for Development

In a series of unanimous votes, the Prince George's County Council approved measures that move the $2 billion National Harbor development along the Potomac River a step closer to breaking ground this year.

Among the bills passed was one allowing the issuance of $160 million in bonds to pay for roads, sewers and other infrastructure.

Litigating for Gay Marriage

ACLU, Couples Go to Court Against Ban

Nine gay couples sued the state of Maryland, contending that its ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional and should be overturned.

Attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union, representing the plaintiffs, said they want to make the Maryland lawsuit a test case in their effort to legalize same-sex marriage.

"We fully expect this case will end in the Maryland Court of Appeals, and that is where this case will be decided," said Kenneth Y. Choe, a lawyer for the ACLU's Lesbian & Gay Rights Project.

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) characterized the lawsuit as part of the ACLU's "far-left agenda."

Cross Burned in Educator's Lawn

Black Official Was Cleared in Grade Scandal

A 12-foot cross was scorched into the lawn at the home of a high-ranking black Howard County public schools official who was implicated and then cleared in a grade-fixing scandal.

On Thursday, police offered a reward for assistance in the arrest of whoever is responsible for the cross-shaped burn at the home of Kimberly Statham, chief academic officer of Howard County schools.

Statham was one of two black officials initially demoted in a dispute over whether she had used her influence to change her daughter's academic record. The decision to restore both officials to their posts has stirred racial tension in the county.

Across the Region

Slots Next Door; Out of the House; Fish Story

* Passage in Pennsylvania of legislation that could launch 61,000 slot machines in that state prompted predictions from the Maryland governor's office that the Free State will lose more revenue as residents go elsewhere to gamble.

* Prince George's County leads all Washington-area jurisdictions in the frequency of residential evictions. Sheriff's deputies delivered more than 300 eviction notices a day last year.

* Montgomery County Council members are considering a first-in-the-nation plan to regulate Internet service provided by cable TV companies -- a move applauded by consumer advocates but decried by industry officials as unnecessary.

* It's 14 down and who knows how many to go. The number of northern snakeheads found in the Potomac and its tributaries in the past two months is rising, and the last two were females carrying lots of eggs.

Awash in patriotism: Rains forced cancellation of the Independence Day Parade on Constitution Avenue and soaked this family of would-be spectators.