The Record from Hackensack, New Jersey on December 20, 2000 · 29
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The Record from Hackensack, New Jersey · 29

Hackensack, New Jersey
Issue Date:
Wednesday, December 20, 2000
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WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 20. 2000 FROM PACE ONE THE RECORD A-23 MOST IMJ TUPS FBI thinks Jersey fugitive may be dead From Page A-1 tips, news of sightings, or leads, law enforcement sources said. The absence of such vital investigative information often prompts the FBI to review whether fugitives in more recent cases should be placed on the list, because they often generate more tips from the public, officials said. If Washington were crossed off the list, the development would mark only the fifth time in the past 50 years that the FBI has removed a fugitive from the high-profile most-wanted rolls for reasons other than their capture, their verified death, or charges being dropped. In those four earlier cases, the FBI decided that the fugitives were no longer considered to be a "particularly dangerous menace to society," according to the agency's Web site. Washington, a New Jersey native, has been charged with attempted murder and unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. A $50,000 reward has been offered for information leading to his capture. When they announced that Washington had made the Top 10 list, federal authorities described the Neptune man as "extremely dangerous," saying he had vowed never to return to prison. Authorities say they believe that Washington had contracted the AIDS virus, and had a history of abusing intravenous drugs. The FBI's wanted poster for Washington says that both of his arms are scarred by needle "track marks." Law enforcement sources say they had received intelligence reports that Washington may have died because of his serious health problems. "There's a good possibility that he's not alive any more," said one law enforcement source familiar with the case. However, the FBI on Tuesday said that, for now, Washington remains on the agency's national list. "We are still actively looking for him," said Special Agent Sandra Carroll, an FBI spokeswoman in the Newark field office. "If at some point we do remove him from the most-wanted list, law enforcement will continue to pursue any and all information that could possibly lead to his arrest." A state police spokesman, Lt. Al Delia Fave, said the agency would have "no problem" should federal authorities choose to reassess Washington's placement on the national list, based on intelligence that he may may dead. But Delia Fave said state police have no plans to drop him from New Jer-.sey's own most-wanted rolls. "We will continue to include him in our Top 12 List, until we have confirmation of his death," he said, referring to the state police list of New Jersey's most wanted criminals. Only a few years ago, FBI officials suggested that it was unlikely that Washington would be taken off the list, even though he had been on it for nearly a decade. Only one person has been on the current list longer than Washington. Thomas Kneir, who was then, the deputy assistant director of the FBI's Criminal Division, was asked in a 1997 National Public Ex-Santa files sex bias suit The Associated Press BECKLEY, W.Va. - A woman who sued after being fired from her Santa gig is back at Crossroads Mall but this time she's Mrs. Claus. "I'd rather be Santa Claus, but I guess I can handle being Mrs. Claus," Donna Underwood said. "I still think it's discrimination." Underwood, 50, insists she can play Santa as well as any man and won't drop a sexual discrimination lawsuit against SantaPlus of St. Peters, Mo. Her lawsuit, filed this month, seeks reinstatement, back pay, and unspecified damages against SantaPlus, which hired her to be St. Nick at the mall in Beckley, 60 miles southeast of Charleston. She said the company fired her after one day on the job when a mall manager objected. "They offered me $3,000 to drop the lawsuit. I told them no," Underwood said. "Then they offered me a job. I wouldn't take that, either. But my attorney said I ought to go ahead and take it." Both roles pay the same, so she agreed. SantaPlus declined to comment. A hearing on the lawsuit that had been scheduled for this week was postponed. Radio interview how many years longstanding fugitives such as Washington would be kept on the list. "We will keep Mr. Washington on the list until all leads have been exhausted," Kneir answered. In April 1989, Washington was a passenger in a car stopped in downtown Neptune by Trooper Michael J. Clayton because its vehicle inspection sticker had expired, officials said. Washington got out of the car and began walking away as Clayton approached, Serious doubts about whether Arthur Lee Washington Jr. is still living could spur the FBI to consider removing him from the national list of most wanted fugitives. officials said. When he was ordered to stop, Washington allegedly turned and opened fire on the trooper. No one was injured, and Washington escaped. Attempts to reach Clayton, who now patrols the Garden State Parkway for the state police, were unsuccessful Tuesday. Authorities say that Washington was a member of the Black Liberation Army, a militant and sometimes violent group that branched off from the Black Panther Party. One of the principal goals of the BLA was to ignite a revolution that would bring down the U.S. government, and then create an independent, black "New Afrika in the South, authorities said. During the 1970s and 1980s, the group carried out a number of bloody attacks and robberies and engaged in several deadly fire-fights with police in the Northeast. The BLA's botched holdup of a Brinks truck in Rockland County, N.Y, in 1981 led to the death of a guard and two police officers. Another fugitive BLA member, Joanne Chesimard, was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of New Jersey state Trooper Werner Foerster in 1973. But Chesimard escaped in a daring 1979 breakout from a Hunterdon County prison staged by the BLA. She now lives in Cuba. Staff Writer Mitchel Maddux's e-mail address is CD W delivery . Suites Beginning in January 2001 at Palisades Medical Center, you can enjoy the miracle of birth in the privacy of our luxurious, full service, birthing suites. We have combined the comforts of home with the latest medical resources available. l I if) - I ff a :r"q X ) I J rirr i Our brand new, full service, labordeliveryrecovery postpartum suites will offer you and your family: Level II neonatal intensive care unit. 24 hour neonatology services. Fetal monitoring. Access to patient information from doctors office. 24 hour mother and baby monitoring. 24 hour stay for fathers. The finest nursing care available. Lactation counselors. Infant care classes for couples. 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