Family calls him hero, but did he die on duty?

Published October 7, 2006

NEW YORK - As the World Trade Center burned, Glenn Winuk rushed to the scene from his law office to offer his skills as a veteran paramedic. He died with surgical gloves on and a medic's bag at his side. A card in his wallet identified him as a volunteer firefighter.

"He died a hero," said his brother, Jay.

Yet, in the eyes of the federal government, he did not die in the line of duty. In a decision sent to Winuk's parents days before the fifth anniversary of his death, the Justice Department rejected their application for a $250,000 benefit for public safety officers killed on the job.

Its reasoning was apologetically bureaucratic: While Winuk was an associate member of the Jericho Fire Department on Long Island, he had not been on active duty since 1998, and thus died a civilian.

Budget deficit drops to $250-billion, CBO says

WASHINGTON - The federal budget deficit estimate for the fiscal year just completed has dropped to $250-billion, congressional estimators said Friday, as the economy continued to fuel impressive tax revenues.

The Congressional Budget Office's latest estimate is $10-billion below CBO predictions issued in August and well below a July White House prediction of $296-billion.

The improving deficit picture - Bush predicted a $423-billion deficit in his February budget - has been driven by better-than-expected tax receipts, especially from corporate profits, CBO said.

27 arrested in crackdown on Colombian cocaine

WASHINGTON - Twenty-seven people were arrested Friday on drug smuggling and money laundering charges linked to a Colombian cocaine operation that kidnapped an undercover U.S. agent last year.

The arrests in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, Colombia, St. Maarten and the Dominican Republic are among 56 indicted as part of international antidrug investigations called "Operation Green Traketon" and "Operation Watusi."

An undercover agent for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, whose identify has not been disclosed, was kidnapped and held for a half-day, authorities said.

The drug ring's leaders demanded a $2-million ransom but then chose to release him after they realized he was a U.S. government agent.

Ky. man tells police he killed family; 4 dead

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Four children ages 3, 4, 7, and 8 were found dead in a public housing complex Friday after a man walked into police headquarters and said he had killed his family.

The man, who had been living in Oregon, had an argument about the children with his estranged wife before he attacked her with a blunt instrument, said Lt. Col. Phil Turner.

The children's mother, 29-year-old Fatuma Amir, suffered injuries that were not life-threatening and was speaking to investigators, he said.

Said Biyad, 42, went to police headquarters about 9 a.m. and told police, "I've just killed my family," Turner said. Biyad was charged with four counts of murder and one count of assault.

Students at Va. women's college sue over men

RICHMOND, Va. - A group of students at Randolph-Macon Woman's College sued the school Friday, challenging its decision to begin admitting men next fall.

The lawsuit, brought by four freshmen, one sophomore and four juniors, seeks to delay the enrollment of men until at least 2010.