Plane Charter Firm Seeks

More Probes on Workers

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The airplane charter company that provided the aircraft for the Oct. 25 flight that crashed and killed Sen. Paul D. Wellstone (D-Minn.) has hired a Florida firm to conduct more intensive employee background checks.

The decision by Executive Aviation follows revelations that Richard Conry, the pilot in command of the twin-engine turboprop plane, had exaggerated his flying experience.

Conry was among the eight people who died in the crash. The cause remains under investigation.

When he was hired, Conry had told Executive Aviation that he had had 400 to 500 hours in the air as a co-pilot for the American Eagle commuter airline. But American Eagle employment records show that Conry resigned after four months as a trainee who never flew passengers.

Students Subdue Gunman

Who Threatened School

SCURRY, Tex. -- A shotgun-wielding man threatened a rural East Texas high school until students and a teacher wrestled him to the ground, authorities said.

The 18-year-old man, a former student at Scurry-Rosser High School, went into the school office and ordered students into the cafeteria, said Principal Richard Sneed.

The man allegedly began pouring gasoline on the floor. Students then helped subdue him, authorities said.

* MIAMI -- A judge ordered an outside doctor to examine one of the caregivers of missing 6-year-old Rilya Wilson after the caregiver's attorney complained about her treatment at the hands of the jail physician. Since she went to jail last month, Geralyn Graham has been treated for arthritis and acid reflux and has seen a cancer specialist. Her attorney, Brian Tannebaum, said jail doctor Lam Tran told her that she would be taken out and shot as if she were a horse.

* BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- A former Ku Klux Klansman convicted in a 1963 church bombing that killed four black girls alleged in a letter from prison that the FBI was behind the crime. Much of Bobby Frank Cherry's letter, delivered this week to the Associated Press, was copied from an article by an alternative magazine, Media Bypass. The magazine reported claims that a former U.S. marshal from Birmingham maintained for years that the bombing was instigated by FBI agents and government informants to gain sympathy for civil rights legislation.

* MIAMI -- A woman who absent-mindedly left a baby inside a sweltering minivan pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter and was placed on 10 years' probation. Circuit Judge Roberto Pineiro also ordered Yunia Perez, 26, to attend parenting classes and barred the mother of three from taking care of anyone else's children ever again. Perez left a neighbor's child, 7-month-old Phillip Gutmann, strapped in the back seat for several hours on Aug. 29. She was supposed to have dropped the boy off at a day care center.

-- From News Services