INDIANAPOLIS – This year’s Indiana State Fair still turned a profit, though a smaller one than in past years, despite reeling from the effects of a stage collapse that killed seven people and injured dozens more.
Figures released Thursday by the Indiana State Fair Commission show this year’s event posted a net profit of $389,000. That’s compared with about $820,000 in 2009, the first year for an extended 17-day run, and $1.2 million for 2010, when a KISS concert helped the fair rake in record grandstand revenue.
And the costs continue. Fair officials estimate two outside investigations of the collapse will cost $975,000 by the end of the year. Fair officials said more than $275,000 has been distributed from a relief fund set up to help survivors.
2nd suspect guilty in slaying of family
A paroled burglar was convicted Thursday of murdering a woman and her two daughters in a gruesome 2007 home invasion in an affluent Connecticut suburb in which family members were tied up, molested, doused in gas and left to die in a fire.
Joshua Komisarjevsky, whose accomplice is already on Connecticut’s death row, stood as jurors declared him guilty of all 17 charges he faced, including capital felony killing, kidnapping, arson and sexual assault.
The New Haven Superior Court jury will decide later whether Komisarjevsky, 31, should be executed.
Amtrak ridership reaches 30 million
Amtrak trains carried more than 30 million passengers in the past 12 months, the most in one year since the passenger railroad was created four decades ago, railroad officials said Thursday.
Ridership during the budget year ending on Sept. 30 was 30.2 million passengers, up 5 percent over the previous year. Ticket revenue was up by more than 8 percent despite significant weather-related disruptions in much of the country. A decade ago, Amtrak carried 21 million passengers a year.
Police: Foster couple ditched kid at game
A central Ohio couple is charged with child endangering after police say they tried to abandon their 9-year-old foster boy at a Cleveland Browns game.
ONN-TV reports that Anna Fugate, 56, and Ernest Fugate, 54, of Circleville appeared Thursday before a municipal court judge.
Investigators tell the station that Anna Fugate sent the boy into Browns Stadium with two strangers after a tailgate argument with her husband Sept. 25. The station reports the strangers went to stadium security.
The couple’s lawyer, Michael Goldberg, tells the station there are two sides to this story and that the couple’s side will come out.
Stone removed from damaged cathedral
Stone masons working in thick fog at the top of the Washington National Cathedral on Thursday removed 2 tons of stonework from a pinnacle damaged by the August earthquake.
A worker standing on scaffolding atop the 330-foot central tower gave directions by radio to a crane operator below to carefully lower the section of hand-carved stonework.
Three of the four pinnacles on the central tower, which date to 1963, were severely damaged in the 5.8-magnitude earthquake Aug. 23.
Transportation chief to leave after term
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood will leave the Obama administration at the end of the president’s current term, his top spokeswoman said Thursday.
LaHood, 65, indicated his intention to leave the Cabinet at a media luncheon but gave no reason for his decision, spokeswoman Jill Zuckman said. He hasn’t yet discussed his intentions with President Obama, she said.
Women kidnapped from Kenyan camp
Suspected Somali militants entered the world’s largest refugee camp Thursday and abducted two Spanish women working with an aid group after shooting and wounding their Kenyan driver – the third kidnapping of Europeans in Kenya in six weeks.
Police pursued the gunmen by land and air, just as they had done after a nighttime kidnapping of a French woman from an island resort this month. In September, a British woman was abducted – and her husband was shot to death – at a coastal resort.
The kidnappings by armed Somalis underscore the ease with which militants can cross into Kenya, take hostages and return to a land where power is determined by AK-47s and bandoliers of ammunition.
2003 case against Strauss-Kahn ends
French prosecutors say Dominique Strauss-Kahn did something to writer Tristane Banon in 2003 that qualifies as sexual assault, but they can’t send him to trial because it happened too long ago and they are dropping the case.
Thursday’s announcement is a legal victory but a moral embarrassment for the suave, assured and married economist who this year led the International Monetary Fund and was on track to seek the French presidency.
Strauss-Kahn was jailed in May on charges he tried to rape a New York hotel maid. Prosecutors later dropped that case, too, but Strauss-Kahn saw his reputation and political ambitions dashed and his personal life exposed.