40,000 Acres in Calif.

Scorched by Wildfires

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. -- Firefighters battled Monday to save hundreds of homes threatened by a stubborn wildfire that broke out over the weekend and raced over hillsides and through canyons in northern Los Angeles County.

Although no houses have been lost, nearly 1,600 have been evacuated since the fire began Saturday. It was ignited when a red-tailed hawk flew into a power line, was electrocuted and its flaming body fell into brush.

The wildfire had spread across 6,000 acres by Monday and was 39 percent contained. Helicopters dropped water to slow the flames as bulldozers and hand crews working in 90-degree heat labored to cut a line around the blaze.

The fire was one of several burning across more than 40,000 acres of California, from eastern San Diego County to Yosemite National Park.

* LOUISVILLE -- Rep. Anne M. Northup (R-Ky.) says it was inappropriate for a GOP office in her district to display a bumper sticker reading: "Kerry is bin Laden's Man. Bush is Mine." Jefferson County GOP Chairman Jack Richardson IV said the stickers were so popular the party headquarters ran out Friday. A spokesman for John F. Kerry's campaign asked Republicans to condemn the sticker, calling it a "mean-spirited smear campaign."

* ATLANTA -- Eddie Albert Crawford, 57, was executed for kidnapping, raping and murdering his 2-year-old niece, Leslie Michelle English, in 1983.

-- From News Services