Local Leads: 3/13/2010

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    NEWSLETTERS

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

    TEEN VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS SUSPENDED
    Twelve members of a Rockville volunteer fire department have been suspended after late-night incursions into an apartment building's recreation room and a fire department warehouse this week, Montgomery County officials said Friday.   In the latest incident, which happened early Friday, shortly after midnight, three 17-year-old volunteer firefighters were arrested on burglary and theft charges, authorities said.  

    "When things like this happen, it's a black eye for the whole fire service," Assistant Fire Chief Scott Graham said.   Graham said the three tripped an alarm at the fire department warehouse on Dover Road, prompting the arrival of county police and Rockville police. Officers found stacked items just inside the door, indicating that the three were planning to leave with bio suits, a medical evacuation bag, a radio and charger, a flashlight, pry bars, an ax, a pipe wrench, rappelling equipment and a traffic vest, said Rockville Police Maj. Bob Rappoport.
    (WASHINGTON POST)

    125 MILLION DOLLARS RICHER
    For the past five months, Steve Williams has lived with a secret.  On Friday, he let it be known that he was the Virginia resident who won last fall's $200 million Mega Millions drawing.  Williams took his place among the game's millionaires when he was presented a check by Virginia Lottery officials during a ceremony at James Madison University in Harrisonburg.  He elected to take the cash option of $125 million, rather than receive the full amount paid out over 26 years. After taxes, Williams received about $88.9 million.

    The Shenandoah carpenter decided to delay claiming his winnings until after he consulted with legal and financial advisers. The drawing was Oct. 16, 2009. Williams said he planned to invest the money.
    (AP/WTOP)

    FLOOD WATCH
    Free at last from February's record snows, Marylanders face what could be record rainfall and potential flooding this weekend.
    Flood watches were posted statewide as a slow-moving coastal storm gathered strength Friday and prepared to drive heavy Atlantic moisture onshore overnight and through most of today.  Forecasters expected the heaviest rains overnight and today, with at least 2 inches to 4 inches falling before ending Monday. Some locations could see 5 inches or more - more than a month's rain in one weekend.  The deluge arrives at a particularly bad time for Maryland. Soils are saturated from the snow melting, and creeks and streams are already swollen.  

    "There is a threat for small streams and creeks to flood, to go out of their banks during the heavy rain," said Brian Lasorsa, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service's Baltimore-Washington Forecast Office in Sterling, Va. And as those waters reach the larger rivers, "that does pose a significant threat for river flooding."
    (BALTIMORE SUN)

    SPRING FORWARD SUNDAY
    Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. ET Sunday, so don’t forget to set your clocks ahead by an hour before you go to bed Saturday night.  You lose an hour of sleep and you have Ben Franklin to blame. This from a 2007 CNN report:  Franklin is thought to have come up with the idea for daylight saving time. In a whimsical letter to a French journal, he said that Parisians could save thousands of francs a years by waking up earlier during the summer because it would prevent them from having to buy so many candles to light the evening hours. 

    In the past, daylight saving time began in April and ended in October. However, an energy bill signed by President George W. Bush on August 8, 2005, extended daylight saving time as part of a long-term solution to the nation's energy problems. The new law extended daylight saving time by four weeks ­– beginning three weeks earlier and ending one week later.
    (CNN.COM)