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Publication: Coffee Break
Trial aborted after jurors play Sudoku

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   THE COFFEE BREAK - Wednesday, June 18, 2008             

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Texas prepared to resume executions after the state's
highest criminal court gave the go-ahead in the case of
Karl Eugene Chamberlain.

Chamberlain, convicted in the 1991 murder and rape of
Felecia Prechtl of Dallas, was scheduled to die by lethal 
injection last Wednesday night, The Dallas Morning News

His execution was originally set for last February but
Dallas County asked that it be re-scheduled to await a
U.S. Supreme court decision in a Kentucky case on the
constitutionality of lethal injections.

In April, the high court ruled that death by lethal
injection was not cruel and unusual punishment.

Other states resumed executions but Texas did not, awaiting
a decision by the state's court of criminal appeals in a 
case challenging the Texas method of capital punishment.

Last Monday, the Texas court ruled that the state's lethal
injection protocol was "materially indistinguishable" 
from Kentucky's, clearing the way for Chamberlain's 
What are your thoughts on death by lethal injection?

P.S. You can discuss this issue or any other topic in
the Coffee Break, forum. Check it out here...


See you at the water cooler,

Email Jeanie


            'Smurfs' movie in the works
Hollywood's Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation 
said they are working on a big-screen adaptation of the
beloved animated series "Smurfs."  Variety.com said the
movie about a community of tiny, blue human-like creatures
would be a combination of live-action and animation.  David
Stem and David Weiss, who wrote the second and third 
installments of the "Shrek" franchise, are in talks to
write the "Smurfs" script, the entertainment industry
trade paper said.  The animated series was based on 
characters created in 1958 by Belgian cartoonist Pierre
Culliford, known professionally as Peyo.  The Smurfs first
appeared in a series of Belgian comic books and inspired 
a line of figurines, games, toys, theme parks, as well as
the TV series, which ran as part of NBC's Saturday morning
lineup from 1981-90, Variety.com said.  "The Smurfs are 
one of the best-known franchises, and among the most
beloved collection of characters in the world," Columbia
Co-president Doug Belgrad said. "We're very excited to
introduce a new generation to Papa Smurf, Smurfette and
the other smurftastic Smurfs in all of their 
'three-apple-tall' glory."


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          Trial aborted after jurors play Sudoku
An Australian drug trial was aborted after three months
when it was discovered that jurors were playing Sudoku in
the jury box.  Judge Peter Zahra of District Court in
Sydney released the jury after the forewoman admitted that 
she and four other jurors had spent a large amount of 
their time during the trial playing the popular game, the
Sydney Morning Herald reported Tuesday.  Defense lawyers 
Adam Morison and Michael Coroneos filed to have the jury
discharged after the two men accused in the trial said 
they saw the jury forewoman playing the game during one 
of the defendants' testimony. The forewoman admitted to
spending about half of her time in the jury box playing
the game.  Morison said it was "extraordinary that 105
witnesses, including 20 police, had been in the witness
box and not seen what was happening."  Zahra verbally 
reprimanded the Sudoku players, but provincial laws do not
allow for the prosecution of inattentive jurors.


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        Trump visits mom's birthplace in Scotland
U.S. developer Donald Trump, on a trip to Scotland to
lobby for his proposed golf resort, stopped off at the
island cottage where his mother grew up.  Trump's private 
jet dwarfed everything else on the runway at Stornoway 
Airport on the Isle of Lewis, The Scotsman reported.
Trump, his sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, a federal appeals
judge, and a retinue of security guards and PR people 
traveled to the cottage Monday in a four-car convoy.  Mary
Macleod was born on Lewis in 1912, the daughter of a 
crofter. In 1936, she married Fred Trump, who later became
one of New York's foremost developers, in New York City.
The cottage where the Macleods lived in the hamlet of Tong
4 miles from Stornoway is still occupied by two cousins, 
Willie and Alastair Murray.  "It was a bit of a scrum,
right enough, but he was terrific and he enjoyed the trip
to Tong," Willie Murray said of the visit.  Trump denied
that his side trip to Lewis was a publicity stunt in aid
of his plans for the east coast of Scotland. He said his
$2 billion project is a chance to do "something historic" 
for the country where his mother was born. 

Questions? Comments? Email us at: mailto:coffee@gophercentral.com
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Copyright 2008 by NextEra Media. All rights reserved.
Copyright 2008 by United Press International 

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