Heroin, Not Cocaine, Seized From U.S. Officer's Wife
NEW YORK--Two packages seized in a drug trafficking case against the wife of the former commander of the U.S. anti-drug operation in Colombia contained heroin, not cocaine as first thought, according to court papers.
Laurie Ann Hiett, wife of Army Col. James Hiett, surrendered in August on drug conspiracy charges. Field tests had indicated that two parcels she allegedly shipped to the United States from the U.S. Embassy in Bogota held 1.2 kilos of cocaine each.
But since then, laboratory tests "have determined that these packages, in fact, contained heroin," prosecutor Lee Dunst wrote in an Oct. 21 letter to Hiett's attorney.
Dunst refused to discuss the case yesterday. But in his letter, he said the fact that the evidence is heroin instead of cocaine is "irrelevant" because, as an alleged drug smuggler, Hiett "need not know the exact nature or type of drug in her possession."
Hiett, 36, has not been indicted and is free on bail. She has denied the charges. Her attorney, Paul D. Lazarus, said the new information does not change her defense: that she was unaware that drugs were in the packages.
Mistrial in Subway Slaying
NEW YORK--A judge declared a mistrial in the case of a schizophrenic man who moved in and out of state mental care for 10 years and was accused of killing a woman by pushing her in front of a New York City subway train.
Defendant Andrew Goldstein, 30, who has a history of mental illness and attacks against women, admitted pushing aspiring screenwriter Kendra Webdale, 32, to her death on Jan. 3, but pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.
Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Carol Berkman declared a mistrial after the jury said it was deadlocked and unable to reach a unanimous verdict after five days of deliberation.
Prosecutors said they would retry Goldstein next year.
The 12 jurors voted unanimously to convict Goldstein of murder, but as to the question of whether he was responsible, 10 said he was and two said he was not.
Out-of-State School Threat
SAMMAMISH, Wash.--An Arizona State University student was playing a prank when he made an Internet chat-room death threat that shut down a high school in this eastern Seattle suburb, a King County sheriff's spokesman said.
Classes resumed yesterday at Eastlake High School after being canceled on Monday.
Faculty members had been monitoring the chat room run by two Eastlake students because of vulgar language and objectionable content. On Friday night, someone logged in to the room and warned other users not to come to school Monday because he planned to kill other students and himself. A faculty member notified the school and classes were canceled.
The suspect, an 18-year-old Arizona State freshman, has never been to the Pacific Northwest, parents were told.