Investigators seek gunman's motive

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON A Colorado man will be arraigned today on felony property damage and firearms violations following his frightening White House shooting spree. The possibility of additional charges, including attempted assassination, was left open.

On the day after the unsettling attack, yellow police tape stretched across the White House lawn and FBI agents armed with laser equipment conducted an inch-by-inch search for bullets around the pockmarked mansion.

The gunman, 26-year-old Francisco Martin Duran, remained silent at D.C.'s central cellblock, his motives a mystery, his demeanor described by the Secret Service as "completely flat." Duran only recently had been released from a military prison after serving three and one-half years for felony assault, the service reported.

Described as unshaken by the tumult, President Clinton rested the day after his grueling Middle East tour and held to his plan to attend an evening gala at Ford's Theatre, where President Lincoln was felled by an assassin's bullet 129 years ago.

Duran, scheduled to be formally arraigned before a U.S. Magistrate on Monday, was charged early Sunday with willfully damaging federal property and possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. The first charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment

and a $10,000 fine, the latter 10 years and $5,000.

The Secret Service held out the possibility that additional charges could be filed.

"I would not eliminate assassination statutes," said Special Agent Carl Meyer. Authorities will search Duran's home, car and elsewhere to try to determine his intent. FBI officials refused to disclose the contents of a note discovered in Duran's pickup truck.

From across the country, new details began to emerge about Duran's troubled past. The Army said Duran spent more than three years imprisoned at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., after he was convicted in March 1991 on charges of aggravated assault with a vehicle and drunk and disorderly conduct. He was dishonorably discharged.

Duran's neighbors outside Colorado Springs said he never exhibited a violent streak to them. His wife, Ingrid, told officials he left home on Sept. 30 to pick up materials for target practice and never returned.

Duran's truck, seized not far from the White House, bore bumper stickers with pro-gun slogans including: "Fire Butch Reno," an apparent reference to Attorney General Janet Reno, and "Those who beat their guns into plows will plow for those who don't."

LAS VEGAS The first verdict from the 1991 Tailhook convention awarded $1.7 million to whistle-blower Paula Coughlin, one of dozens of women who claimed they were assaulted by drunken Navy and Marine aviators.

A federal jury ruled Friday that the Las Vegas Hilton failed to provide adequate security during a convention known for its debauchery in previous years at the hotel.

The four-man, four-woman jury also decided the hotel and its parent corporation were negligent and acted with malice, allowing the panel to return Monday to decide on further punitive damages.

The $1.7 million was for actual damages, to compensate the former lieutenant for her emotional distress and other losses.

Coughlin, 32, resigned from the Navy in February, saying the assault and hostility from fellow aviators left her unable to continue a career that included being a helicopter pilot and admiral's aide.

Coughlin cried as the verdict was read and held hands with her lawyer. Her mother, Rena, sat in the front row of the courtroom and also wept. Neither would comment on the verdict.

"I'm very gratified that the jury has vindicated Paula Coughlin, and that justice has been served," said Dennis Schoville, Coughlin's lead attorney.

The Hilton's lead attorney, Eugene Wait, refused to comment.

NABATIYEH, Lebanon Iranian-backed guerrillas attacked an Israeli post in an occupied strip of south Lebanon Saturday, and claimed to have overrun it and set it ablaze. The fighting touched off artillery battles.

The Israeli army said one Israeli soldier was killed and two wounded. Security sources in south Lebanon, speaking on condition of anonymity, said one Lebanese civilian was killed and 13 people were wounded, including five Israeli soldiers, in the clashes.

It was the fourth straight day of fighting in south Lebanon, the last active war front in the conflict.

The escalation of hostilities was seen as a message that Arab extremists remain determined to block peace treaties with Israel.

A few hours after the morning assault near the village of Dabshe, more guerrillas of the Shiite Muslim Hezbollah, or Party of God, fired a rocket-propelled grenade at an Israeli patrol in Aishiyeh, one and one-half miles to the north, inside the Israelis' self-designated security zone.

The security sources said there were no casualties in the second attack.

The recent spate of violence flared Wednesday, when Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty in a ceremony attended by President Clinton, who ended his six-country, peace-promoting swing through the region early Saturday in Saudi Arabia.

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina Expanding their strongest offensive of the war, government forces trapped hundreds of Serb soldiers Saturday on a northwestern front and launched an infantry and artillery attack near Sarajevo.

In possible Serb retaliation for the offensives, several rounds of mortar fire hit the government-held suburb of Hrasnica, near Sarajevo's airport, wounding at least five people, hospital and army officials said. U.N. peacekeepers could not immediately confirm the report.

The mostly Muslim government forces swept into the town of Bosanska Krupa, trapping hundreds of Serb soldiers, U.N. officials said.

With a prewar population of about 20,000, the town 130 miles northwest of Sarajevo would be by far the largest Serb-held town to fall to the government since the war began in April 1992.

Government troops also attacked Serb positions about 14 miles southwest of Sarajevo, said a U.N. spokesman, Col. Bertrand Labarsouque.

BELFAST, Northern Ireland Rockets soon lit up the night sky over Catholic west Belfast and families stood on their front porches cheering.

For thousands of children in Northern Ireland, this is their first Halloween without real fear following cease-fires by the Irish Republican Army and Protestant paramilitaries.

The separate truces, beginning with the IRA's on Sept. 1, brought peace to this British province for the first time since Protestant-Catholic rioting erupted in 1969.

Halloween festivities started over the weekend. For once, parents did not have to worry that their trick-or-treating children would get caught in gunfire or a bomb attack.

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