The South Bend Tribune from South Bend, Indiana on June 30, 1999 · 16
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The South Bend Tribune from South Bend, Indiana · 16

South Bend, Indiana
Issue Date:
Wednesday, June 30, 1999
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D4 The South Bend Tribune Ml AREA Wednesday, June 30, 1999 Longtime suspect indicted in death of teen mom Senator: Agriculture faces threats By USA SINGHANIA ASSIHlllll r I . U ' lll'l GRAND RAPIDS, Mu ll 15 uuk old Newaygo County man, who could l.u tin- death penalty if convicted of murdering a teen iee mother, told a federal judge Tuesday he is innocent At an initial hearing, Marv in Gahrion II said a federal indictment alleging lie drou nod 19 year old Rachel Timmerman two years ago ts u rong God knows that I didn't kill amone," Gahrion said during one of several outbursts in court, despite U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph So Murder timeline A timeline of the investigation into Rachel Timmermans murder: June 3, 1997. Rachel Timmerman, 19, disappears, shortly before she is set to testify against Marvin Gabrion II, whom she has accused of rape. Her 11-month-old daughter, Shannon VerHage, is also missing. July 5, 1997. The body of Rachel Timmerman is discovered in Oxford Lake in rural Newaygo County. Authorities say Timmerman was still alive when she was gagged, bound with chains and cinder blocks and dropped into the water. October 1997. Marvin Gabrion It is arrested in New York state on federal charges of fleeing Michigan to avoid a drunken-driving case and Social Security fraud. July 1998. Gabrion sentenced to five years in prison, the maximum sentence for Social Security fraud. D June 1999. federal grand jury indicts Gabrion on a murder charge in Timmermans death. Meijer finds da Vinci horse officials downplay his role GRAND RAPIDS. Mich. (APh-A massive, majestic bronze horse finally has been crafted as tribute to what some scholars say w as one of the greatest heartaches of Leonardo da Vincis life. But five centuries after the famed artists death, Fred Meijer is voicing his own heartache as a mail whose deep pockets made the statue possible but who claims he was snubbed during its unveiling last Friday in New York. To him, what transpired has about as much satisfaction as a stale bucket of oats.. The horse wouldnt be going to Italy unless they got someone else to pony up the money." The Grand Rapids Press quoted Meijer as saying. We are partners. It seems kind of childish to me not to give the whole story." During a Friday new s conference announcing the projects completion, organizers told the centuries-old story behind the horse, extolled its artistic merits, praised its originator but barely mentioned an identical sculpture the so called American Horse is bound for the Frederik Meijer Gardens here. "We were told this is their show, said Meijer, patriarch of the one-stop-shopping chain bearing his name. I think the implication is we should keep our mouths shut and let them get the publicity Were going to be their guests, but were not going to be docile guests Next month, the towering $6 5 million "II Cavallo" - Italian for The Horse statue that stands on display next to its foundry about 70 miles north of New York City will be dismantled. If li then be shipped to Milan in appreciation for da Vinci and the Renaissance legacy As the story goes, da Vinci cried on his deathbed at the thought of never having completed the 21-foot bronze horse he was commissioned to sculpt for the Duke of M ilan. SLB61 Just In Time For The Fourth! Only $4.44 PROGRESSIVE BAKERY , illes repeated admonitions that his iom-mi'iits could be used i' evidence against him " fhcrotoiv it must he God's will for me to stale emphatically Ilia! I'm innocent. Since Gahrion is m piiMin on unrelated h ages. hoinhvasiiot d ist ussetl in court He will heariaigned Fn-da The hearing came hours alter prosecutors unsealed a nearly 4 week old indictment alleging Gabrion killed Timmerman with "deliberation, premeditation and malice" sometime between June 3, 1997, when she disappeared, and July 5, 1997, when her body was found. The indictment did not mention the victims 11-month-old daughter, Shannon VerHage, who disap-- peared the same time and is still missing. Prosecutors believe the little girl is probably dead, although the family has not given up hope. Under federal law, Gabrion could get the Rachel Timmerman and her daughter, Shannon, are shown in a family photo. death penalty if convicted. Michigan does not have the death penalty. Timmermans mother said she would welcome a death-penalty sentence, 1 expect him to get the death sentence ... and I want to watch it." said Velda Timmerman. That guy took a beautiful life and has ruined so many others. Timmerman's body was found in Oxford Lake in July 1997. She had been gagged and bound with chains and cinder blocks. Prosecutors declined to discuss a motive or specific evidence, but Newaygo County Prosecutor Chrystal Roach, who w ill serve as a special assistant U.S. attorney for the case, said Timmerman had accused Gabrion of rape in 1996. Gabrion, who has been a suspect since Timmermans disappearance, is serving a five-year prison term for identity fraud. He was com icted last year of illegally collecting the disability payments of another man, Robert Allen, who is missing. Gabrion also has been linked to two other disappearances. Investigators consider him a suspect in the disappearance of Wayne Davis and John Weeks. Davis was a witness to Timmerman's alleged rape. The murder charge is being brought in federal court because the alleged crime took place on federal property in the Manistee National Forest. . v J IJT nr ." ' I I1 - k S s H I 1 . i'lV i ' The bronze sculpture da Vinci's Horse. Nearly 500 years later, the tale of da Vincis lost horse caught the attention of Pennsylvania airline pilot and amateur artist Charles Dent, who read of the horse in a 1977 edition of National Geographic magazine. Meijer learned of the languishing Trading Card Game In Stock Now!!!!! Jungle Expansion Basic Set Booster Packs Preconstructed Decks Japanese Animation Large Anime selection including Pokemon (tin me at Scottsdale location only North 52025 SR 933 Ph 277-1133 1 lies - Sun Noon - Midnight Mon 2- 19pm zF -fp i YTf P Wjo Vi AP PtrateVANNA MOORE BUTZNER project in 1997 and reached for his checkbook, chipping in $2.38 million so a horse could be cast for Frederik Meijer Gardens and the horse for Italy could be finished. All told, he expects to spend about $3 million by the time the horse arrives here. Magic: The Gathering Packs, Boxes & Singles Games Workshop Full line of 40K and Fantasy Battle Role Playing Games Vampire, Dungeons & Dragons, Rifts, Battletech and more!!! Tournaments, Leagues and Campaigns. Call for schedule. f Free in-store gaming 7 South Scottsdale Mall FAOTASY GATJ1ES s,,nlla,-5pm By MALCOLM JOHNSON Associated ftvss Writer EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan agriculture is in danger, with cheaper imports, questionable federal farm policies and state land use debates threatening to discourage farming even further, a state senator warned Tuesday. "Will we have agriculture in Michigan in the future or won't we?" asked Sen. George McManus, R-Tra-verse City. Do we want to be a nation of importers or do we want to grow our own food? "What happens if farming disappears from Michigan? Do we want to face the economic impact of losing an industry? McManus made his comments as a Senate task force which he chairs opened its seventh hearing on the future of agriculture in Michigan. Officials said an eighth hearing may be slated for the Detroit area. After that, a report will be issued BATTLE CREEK Reservists returning home this morning Personnel from the 110th Fighter Wing are returning home from their mission as part of the NATO force in Kosovo. The first contingent of 24 will arrive back in Battle Creek this morning, followed by more Thursday night, officials of the 110th said in a prepared statement. Six Air National Guard A-10 attack jets will return to the base Friday. The 110th deployed the A-10 aircraft and about 150 personnel as part of a joint unit with the 104th Fighter Wing in Westfield, Mass., and the 124th Fighter Wing from Boise, Idaho. The planes and about 500 maintenance and other support personnel were sent to Trapani, Italy, about seven weeks ago. At the time they were called up, the members were told they could be in Europe up to nine months. Once home, the Guardsmen will be taken off active duty. LANSING Lawnmower boy brings crusade to Michigan A 14-year-old Utah boy roared his bright red riding mower onto the Capitol lawn Tuesday as part of an offbeat campaign to raise awareness about organ donations. Ryan Tripp is planning to mow the lawn of every state capitol in the United States this summer during a 75-day tour. Lansing was his 22nd stop; he was scheduled to mow Wednesday in Columbus, Ohio. The main reason for going on this trip is to get out the message Theyll Cha Cha Away With Your CHATCHKAS You've been accumulating stuff for years. It's time to get rid of some of n. So you can get different stuff! Why not hold a garage or yard sale? Spread the word with an ad in the classified section. Iliat's where 727c of Americans say they'd look to find out about these sales. Call 235-6000 or 1-800-248-7142 7am - 5pm, Monday - Friday T and legislation prepared for the fall session. ' The hearing resulted in no concrete proposals, but saw discussion of common problems, including the consolidation of producers, fiendishly complicated federal pricing laws, debatable trade policies, difficulty in arranging financing, and the public reaction to farm operations with all their smells and noises, "There is a combination of reasons why (agriculture processing) plants are moving out, said McManus, noting plans by Kellogg Co. to dose part of a Battle Creek plant. "Poitple like farm land but they dont want us to farm it. Were at a crossroads in Michigan. The quickest way to preserve land is for the farmer to make a profit." Hearing participants recounted a series of problems linked to the consolidation of companies, federal law and domestic import policies. "Were raising the animals, but we cant get them slaughtered, said Harold Walcott of Allendale, who MICHIGANBricfs WIRE REPORTS to people how important organ donation is, Tripp said. "Twelve people per day die waiting for organ or tissue donations. Gov. John Engler greeted Tripp and congratulated him for his efforts. Engler said a 1998 Michigan law that lets people register as organ donors when they renew their drivers licenses caused the number of donors on a statewide list to jump from 18,000 to more than 80,000. Every time theres a story like this, several dozen calls come in, said James Haveman, director of the state Department of Community Health. We have 2,200 (people) in Michigan waiting for donors right now. We should have zero. This isn't the first time Tripp and his lawnmower have gone on tour. In 1997, Tripp rode his mower 3.116 miles from Utah to the U.S. Capitol, raising $15,000 for a neighbors liver transplant. Tripp, whose family owns a landscaping business, said he got the idea for a cross-country journey when his fathers truck broke down and the two had to ride their mowers back home. PORT HURON 150th million crossing made on Blue Water A man has become the 150th million to cross the Blue Water Bridge, which connects Port Huron and Canada. , Clifford Lau, 44, of Port Huron, was given a picture of the bridge during a colorful fireworks display. I was astonished, said Lau, who wrestled with his radio and an uncooperative antenna to hear radio reports about the lucky driver. His 1987 Toyota Celica crossed the bridge at 8:49 a.m. EDT Monday on CASH IN ON CLASSIFIEDS raises turkeys. He told the panel it was difficult to arrange financing for a new processing plant. "Federal crop insurance is inadequate," said Todd Eldred of Leslie, a sixth-generation farmer, who also protested land-use proposals. "This is not just a farmland issue. It is a societal issue. As the hearing was held, the Ag Expo began nearby. The annua agricultural exposition at Michigan State University showcases farm equipment and techniques, drawing thousands of people to several days of information, displays and festivities. "In my old age, my interest is horticulture and forestry, said Henry Klos, a retired engineer from Walled Lake, as he made his way toward the brightly colored tents. At the annual Ag Expo Breakfast, Gov. John Engler stressed his continued commitment to agriculture in Michigan. He said his administration wants to create an environment in hich farming can flourish. the way to work at Bayer Inc. in Sarnia, Ontario. A five-axle truck entering Port Huron also was given the same honor because officials said they couldnt distinguish which vehicle crossed first. "I thought I had missed it," Lau told The Detroit News. When they told me I was the winner, I was shocked. Its very nice. As many as 5 million cars and a million trucks use the Blue Water Bridge annually. Traffic is expected to double by 2020. WATERFORD TOWNSHIP Council: Public access show can stay on air A cable public access show with skits such as How to Beat Your Wife or Girlfriend and laced with nudity and profanity will stay on the air. The township board was concerned about the contents of the show, called Something to Laugh At, which airs late at night on Waterfords Channel 47. In a report to the board Monday, Media Network concluded there was little the Oakland County township could do without being accused of censorship, The Oakland Press reported. Media Network is a nonprofit entity that oversees the public access station as well as the government and educational access station. Township Clerk Betty Fortino said its a shame nothing can be done to curb what she described as filth. But the shows producer, Brian Kath, 20, of Waterford said no one has called him to complain about the show. He receives e-mail both good and bad and said he doesnt intend to change the show. Were not trying to offend anyone, he said. Its not my fault if a 4-year-old flips through and sees it. e-mail: Fax:219-232-1880 4

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