Vehicles in Bush Motorcade Collide

President Bush's motorcade had a minor accident yesterday when the ambulance that routinely trails the president in case of an emergency crashed into a support vehicle on the way back from Camp David.

Secret Service spokesman Jonathan Cherry said that no one was injured and that the motorcade did not stop before arriving at the White House. The presidential limousine, which travels near the front of the motorcade of more than a dozen vehicles, was not involved.

The accident occurred a few blocks from the White House. The motorcade's lead vehicles slowed down, but the ambulance did not stop in time and rear-ended a Chevrolet Suburban carrying high-tech communications equipment, damaging the back bumper and doors. The Suburban in turn hit a support van in front of it.

All three vehicles had minor damage, Cherry said.

Bush typically commutes to Camp David by helicopter, but potentially bad weather forced him to return by car yesterday after an overnight stay.

Man Climbs White House Fence

An Arkansas man scaled the fence surrounding the White House yesterday while President Bush was inside. The man was immediately captured by Secret Service officers.

Secret Service spokesman Jonathan Cherry identified the jumper as Shawn A. Cox. Cherry said Cox was being charged with unlawful entry and is expected to appear today in U.S. District Court.

Cox has a record with the Secret Service, Cherry said, but he would not provide details.

Cherry said he did not know where Cox was from in Arkansas or why he wanted to get on the White House grounds. He did not have a weapon, Cherry said.

Bush was home when Cox climbed the fence on the northeast side of the property around lunchtime. Uniformed Secret Service officers stood by with guns drawn while an agent escorted Cox to a guard station. Cox was wearing a sweatshirt, and his pants were wet and dirty from where he was brought to the ground. He did not answer a journalist's question about why he scaled the fence.

National Zoo Lion to Have Lump Removed

One of the National Zoo's pair of African lions will undergo laser surgery this morning to remove a mass on his lower lip. Tsavo was born at the zoo 17 years ago.

Zoo officials who announced the surgery cautioned that such operations, and the anesthesia they require, are risky for any animal, especially older animals such as Tsavo. Spokeswoman Peper Long said Tsavo's prognosis will not be known until the mass has been thoroughly tested, which could take months.

The lump was first noticed by zoo veterinarians early last month. At the time, it was the size of a cherry, zoo officials said in a statement. When it increased in size, Long said, the decision was made to surgically remove it.

Male African lions rarely live longer than 12 years in the wild, zoo officials said. In captivity, their life expectancy averages 13 to 15 years. Tsavo's twin brother, Tana, died in October 2002. Two female lions arrived at the zoo a year later to keep Tsavo company; one of those has died.

Long said there were no plans to add to the lion collection.


Teen Pregnancy Rate Fell in 2003

The latest statistics show the District's teen pregnancy rate falling, although it remains one of the highest in the country.

Of every 1,000 girls 15 to 19 years old, just fewer than 100 became pregnant in 2003, according to the D.C. Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. That was better than the 2002 rate of 101.8 but -- showing how much the rate can seesaw year to year -- far worse than the 2001 rate of 74.4.

"D.C. still has a long way to go," Brenda Rhodes Miller, the campaign's executive director, said in a statement Friday.


1 Killed, 4 Injured in Beltway Crash

A Silver Spring woman was killed early yesterday when the car in which she was riding was hit from behind by another vehicle on the Capital Beltway, Maryland State Police said.

Sandra Cornejo, 25, of the 8100 block of Tahona Drive, was the rear left passenger in a Ford Escort that also was carrying four other women. One of the other back-seat passengers was critically injured in the 5 a.m. crash; the driver and the remaining two passengers were hurt, but less seriously.

Police said the Escort was rear-ended by a gold-colored Chevrolet TrailBlazer on the outer loop of the Beltway near the exit for University Boulevard. The Escort then spun out of control and was hit by a third vehicle, also a Chevrolet TrailBlazer. No one was hurt in either TrailBlazer. The driver of the gold TrailBlazer fled the scene on foot and had not been found as of late yesterday afternoon, police said. No charges were filed against the drivers of the other two vehicles. The accident remains under investigation.


Officials Seek Slavery Museum's Records

Richmond Mayor L. Douglas Wilder (D) is under fire from some Fredericksburg city leaders seeking more information about the financial dealings of the as-yet unbuilt U.S. National Slavery Museum, which Wilder founded.

Some Fredericksburg City Council members have said the museum's accounting of how it spent a $1 million city loan has been inadequate. They're asking the museum to provide copies of various studies the loan has funded because the documents were paid for with tax dollars.

Museum officials say they have raised more than $50 million in cash and pledges for the museum, which Wilder estimates will cost $100 million to build. He wants to raise an additional $100 million to operate and endow the facility. The museum is slated to open in fall 2007 on 38 acres along the Rappahannock River. Site work is underway, but construction has not started.

The museum's largest expenditures by category, according to a Nov. 8 report, were $547,761 for office operations and completing a museum strategic plan; $255,621 for developing preliminary infrastructure plans and performing environmental and cultural resource assessments; and $182,624 for developing and implementing a variety of cultural and educational activities.

"Just as Katrina pulled the covers off the treatment of vulnerable populations, I think it also pulled the covers off the Red Cross and showed they're not used to -- in this country -- dealing with communities of color in deep need."

-- Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), a member of the Congressional Black Caucus. -- A1

Compiled from reports by staff writers Susan Levine and Debbi Wilgoren and the Associated Press.