Amtrak Ticketing Stalled

A computer system shutdown at Amtrak headquarters caused ticketing problems across the country for two hours yesterday morning, forcing passengers to wait in long lines for handwritten tickets.

A company spokeswoman said Amtrak had shut down its online ticketing reservation system Friday night for maintenance, but the system crashed unexpectedly about 7:13 a.m. yesterday. Passengers who had expected to use automated ticket machines, including those at Washington's Union Station, were forced instead to wait to be issued tickets by Amtrak employees.

The problem was fixed after about two hours and did not cause major delays for the trains, Amtrak spokeswoman Vernae Graham said.


Man's Body Found in Tidal Basin

A body believed to be that of a man who plunged into the Tidal Basin on Friday was recovered from the basin last night, authorities said.

The body was spotted just before 7 p.m. from a D.C. police helicopter in the section of the basin north of Independence Avenue SW. The man went into the water about 2 p.m. Friday near the Kutz Bridge. A D.C. police recovery specialist said that, based on the location of the body and the time it took to surface, it was almost certainly the same man.

The body of the adult black male was taken to the D.C. medical examiner's office, said Sgt. Joe Gentile, a D.C. police spokesman.

St. Elizabeths Marks 150 Years

The D.C. Department of Mental Health and St. Elizabeths Hospital began a two-day workshop celebrating the hospital's 150th anniversary yesterday. Among the featured events was a keynote address by Eric Dean, author of "Shook Over Hell: Post-Traumatic Stress, Vietnam, and the Civil War."

Today's events, held at St. Elizabeths at 2700 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, are scheduled to include a Civil War-era church service at 10 a.m. and a memorial service at the cemetery at noon.


Centreville Man Dies in Crash

A Centreville man was killed early yesterday morning in the Annandale area on the Capital Beltway when his Mercedes sport-utility vehicle struck a guardrail.

Rudy W. Illanes, 31, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Virginia State Police Sgt. J.L. Doss.

About 3:15 a.m., Illanes was heading south on Interstate 495, a half-mile north of Route 236. His SUV appeared to have run off the right shoulder, Doss said. Illanes overcorrected and then slid off the left shoulder, hitting the guardrail. The car flipped and Illanes was ejected, Doss said.

The cause of the crash and the driver's speed are being investigated. Doss said it is possible that Illanes fell asleep at the wheel.


Man Dies in Aspen Hill Crash

A motorist was killed last night in a three-car crash in the Aspen Hill area of Montgomery County, county police said.

The man's vehicle was turning left into a shopping center on Connecticut Avenue near Independence Street about 7 p.m. when it collided with first one, then another northbound vehicle, police said.

The driver of the second car was not injured, and the driver of the third car suffered injuries that were not considered to be life-threatening, police said. Names of the victims were withheld until relatives could be notified, police said.

Ocean City Gears Up for Crowds

Ocean City police are redeploying some officers this month to get a handle on groups of unruly people on the boardwalk that have drawn complaints.

After receiving the reports, the command staff decided to put more plainclothes officers on the boardwalk and elsewhere downtown during night hours.

The move comes as graduating high school seniors along with other tourists have begun to flock to Ocean City at the start of the traditional summer season.

Woman Gets 2-Year Sentence

A federal judge has sentenced a 27-year-old Upper Marlboro woman to two years in prison -- and two years' probation -- for money laundering.

Prosecutors say Natasha Adams was the girlfriend of a Prince George's County drug dealer, and she helped him conceal and launder money.

Adams entered a guilty plea in April.

The U.S. attorney's office says Adams used drug money to buy a BMW and to get a loan for a home in Mitchellville. According to court documents, she held bank accounts worth more than $300,000.

"A marquee job like this is every engineer's dream. To work on something of this elegance is really the pinnacle."

-- Jim Ruddell, project construction engineer for the $2.43 billion replacement for the Wilson Bridge across the Potomac River. -- C1

Compiled from reports by staff writers Ann E. Marimow, David Nakamura and Martin Weil and the Associated Press.