Sat, Aug 08, 2015 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take



Bush appears for jury service

Former president George W. Bush appeared in court on Wednesday to serve on a jury, but he was not picked and instead spent his time posing for selfies. The 43rd president surprised fellow potential jurors when he arrived to fulfil the civic duty at a courthouse in Dallas, Texas. The former commander-in-chief, who was president from 2001 to 2009, posed for photographs with star-struck Texans before being told he was not needed.


Stradivarius recovered

A priceless Stradivarius stolen 35 years ago from a concert violinist and music professor has been recovered, his daughter said on Thursday. The violin — made in 1734 — had been lifted from the office of Roman Totenberg at a music school in Boston in 1980. Totenberg died in 2012 at the age of 101 after a life that saw the Polish-born virtuoso, who emigrated to the US in 1938, play for a host of major US symphony orchestras. His daughter, NPR public radio justice reporter Nina Totenberg, said she received a telephone call from an FBI agent in June, informing her that the violin had been located. In an NPR blog, she said it turned up in a locked case in the home of the widow of a musician named Phillip Johnson, who died in 2011. The elder Totenberg had long suspected Johnson to be the actual thief, but police did not pursue the lead, his daughter wrote.


Surgery music unsafe: study

A surgeon on the job is five times more likely to repeat a request when music is playing in the operating theater, according to a study, casting doubt on the wisdom of the common practice. “Music in the operating theater can interfere with team communication, but is seldom recognized as a potential safety hazard,” said the study, which was published on Wednesday in the Journal of Advanced Nursing. More than 50 percent of surgical operations are performed against a backdrop of music. Some surgeons say they play music to reduce stress, block out white noise, or enhance concentration during procedures. Imperial College London senior researcher Sharon-Marie Weldon and her colleagues filmed 20 operations in Britain over a six-month period, some with music and some without. They identified more than 5,000 instances in which a request requiring a response was made by a doctor or other staff member. The results showed that “repeated requests were five times more likely to occur in cases that played music than those that did not.”


Teen sentenced for robbery

A teenager who, with her twin sister, robbed an octogenarian they met on an Internet dating site was sentenced on Thursday to five years in prison. The woman, Shaina Foster, 18, had pleaded guilty to one count of robbery in exchange for the five-year sentence in a deal with the Manhattan district attorney’s office. She and her sister, Shalaine Foster, admitted that they tied up Paul Aronson, 84, in his house and took his cash and credit cards after he had taken them both on a dinner date. Citing the seriousness of the crime, Justice Michael Obus of state Supreme Court in Manhattan said he would not grant Shaina Foster youthful offender status, which would have made her eligible for a lesser sentence. Aronson lay helpless on his living room floor, bound with zip ties, unable to eat or drink, from 8:15pm on Oct. 1 last year until the next morning, when a neighbor discovered him. “Far worse results could have happened if the victim had not been rescued,” Obus said.

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