Alleged Yosemite Killer Writes Letter to Paper

FRESNO, Calif. -- A motel handyman who reportedly confessed to butchering four women in Yosemite National Park has written to a newspaper saying he hopes any "made-for-TV" movie about his bloody exploits will benefit the victims' families.

In a letter published yesterday in the Fresno Bee, Cary Stayner, 38, expressed sorrow for the deaths of naturalist Joie Armstrong, 26 -- who was beheaded July 21 -- as well as Carole Sund, 42, her daughter Juliana, 15, and visiting Argentine student Silvina Pelosso, all of whom were murdered while visiting Yosemite in February. He has pleaded not guilty to killing Armstrong and has not been charged in the other three slayings.

"I would like to say how deeply sorry I am for all the pain and sorrow I've brought upon so many people," Stayner said in his handwritten letter to the newspaper. He said his offer to sell the rights to his story was aimed at "passing as much restitution to my victims families as possible."

"I realize that the money would be little consolation for the loss of their loved ones, but until the jury, judge and executioner fulfill their role in this matter, it's all I can offer," the letter said.

Cleveland Prepares For KKK Rally

CLEVELAND -- Mayor Michael White said the Ku Klux Klan had a legal right to hold a rally in the city as planned today, no matter how much he opposed their message, while the city hosts two other big events.

The Klan's planned rally coincides with a nearby Black Family Expo, which is expected to draw an estimated 20,000 people, and the Cleveland Browns' first game in their new football stadium, against the Minnesota Vikings.

Local police tried to prevent the Klan from rallying because they felt police forces would be too stretched. But a federal judge upheld the Klan's right to rally. Church, business and civic groups planned counter-rallies to show their opposition to the Klan.

Reputed Drug Lords Face New Indictments

MIAMI -- Two reputed drug lords in one of Miami's longest-running narcotics cases faced new indictments for allegedly using murder, bribery, threats and perjury to corrupt a jury and escape federal drug charges.

The 46-count indictment alleged Augusto "Willy" Falcon and Salvador "Sal" Magluta used drug profits to hire hit men to kill potential witnesses, bribed jurors for "not guilty" votes, paid prison inmates to give false testimony and gave hush money to people aiding investigators.

Falcon and Magluta, who had been charged with trafficking more than 220,000 pounds of cocaine and earning $2 billion in profits between 1978 and 1991, were acquitted by a jury in 1996, stunning prosecutors, one of whom resigned, and launching a spending spree by the jury foreman, who was convicted of accepting $500,000 in bribes.

At least three people, including a lawyer who represented Falcon a decade ago and two potential witnesses against the organization, were murdered during the course of the investigation, prosecutors alleged.


DILLON, Mont. -- A moderate earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale rattled this rural corner of southwestern Montana, but there were no reports of any damage or injuries.

BARTOW, Fla. -- Joshua Phillips, 15, was sentenced to life in prison for murdering an 8-year-old neighborhood girl in a crime Circuit Judge Charles Arnold said would bring an even harsher sentence on Judgment Day. Joshua was tried as an adult last month and convicted of first-degree murder in the Nov. 3, 1998, death of Maddie Clifton, whose body he stuffed into the frame of his water bed.

AUSTIN -- David Waters, a suspect in the disappearance of atheist Madalyn Murray O'Hair, her son and adopted daughter, was given an eight-year sentence on a federal weapons charge a week after he got 60 years for stealing from O'Hair's organization. Waters, who had been on probation for the theft charge, returned to court after federal authorities found 119 rounds of handgun ammunition in his apartment in March.