Local Leads: 02/10/10

News you need to know

By Charlie Bragale
|  Wednesday, Feb 10, 2010  |  Updated 1:16 PM EDT
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Local Leads: Snow Buries Crime; Human Microchips

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The following stories have been hand-selected by the Assignment Desk at News4:

SNOW MEANS LESS CRIME
While many Marylanders spent the snowy weekend wondering how they would dig out or if they'd have school or work come Monday, Julie Drake, a Baltimore prosecutor who works on family violence cases, was braced for the worst. "At the start of the snowstorm, that's the first thing I thought about," she said. "When you have people stuck in a house together, tempers fray, conflicts come out, and it's very difficult for people to leave and blow off steam." (Baltimore Sun)

HUMAN MICROCHIPS
The House of Delegates is scheduled to vote Wednesday on a bill that would protect Virginians from attempts by employers or insurance companies to implant microchips in their bodies against their will.  It might also save humanity from the antichrist, some supporters think.  Delegate Mark L. Cole (R-Fredericksburg), the bill's sponsor, said that privacy issues are the chief concern behind his attempt to criminalize the involuntary implantation of microchips. But he also said he shared concerns that the devices could someday be used as the "mark of the beast" described in the Book of Revelation. (Washington Post)

SPEED CAMERA LAWSUIT
Several Maryland jurisdictions that have or are considering speed cameras to ticket drivers say they are paying close attention to a class-action lawsuit filed in Montgomery County. At issue is whether the county has been operating its speed camera program illegally by paying its contractor per ticket. The lawsuit, which was filed in 2008, is expected to be heard June 30 in Montgomery County Circuit Court. (Gazette)

BUS ROUTES SAVED
The Montgomery County Council voted to fully fund the county's Ride On bus service Tuesday, rejecting County Executive Ike Leggett's proposal to cut a handful of bus routes with low ridership.  Council members said they believed that bus service was a "core" function of county government and the low-income residents who rely on bus service can't afford to lose their sole means of transportation. (Examiner) 

NEW GUN STORE OPENS WITH A BANG
A new gun store in Herndon opened with a bang last week, but some residents are up in arms about its location. When NOVA Armament, LLC, held its grand opening on Jan. 30, it drew a crowd that surpassed even its owners' expectations. Several dozen people, including Herndon Mayor Steve DeBenedittis and Town Councilman Dave Kirby, jammed into the small storefront at 795 Center St., formerly a vacant space below Tina's Hair Salon. (Fairfax Times)

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