Across the southeast

Body of child thrown from bridge is found


MOBILE, Ala. --- A duck hunter on Saturday morning found the body of one of four children that police say were thrown from a coastal bridge by their father, raising hopes that the other bodies will be recovered, Mobile County Sheriff Sam Cochran said.

The father, Lam Luong, has been charged with capital murder. A search of waterways around Dauphin Island for the children -- ranging in age from a few months to 3 years -- began Tuesday after prosecutors said Mr. Luong confessed.

About 9 a.m. Saturday, a duck hunter found the body of an infant about five miles west of the bridge in a marshy area called Point of Pines, near Bayou La Batre, the home of the Luong family.

Sheriff Cochran said the discovery gives hope that the other three bodies will be recovered. He said a chaplain informed the children's family of the discovery Saturday morning.

Mr. Luong, 37, a shrimp boat worker, was denied bond Thursday in a court hearing in Mobile on four charges of capital murder. If convicted, he could be sentenced to death or life in prison without parole.

Floridians fight over use of rivers' water

JACKSONVILLE, FLA. --- North and central Florida aren't feeling very neighborly at the moment as they battle over water from the St. Johns and Ocklawaha rivers.

Central Florida plans to take millions of gallons of water a day out of the rivers to meet that area's exploding demand.

That's angering north Florida residents and officials, who say that could cause grave environmental damage, particularly to the north-flowing St. Johns.

Jacksonville, St. Johns County, other cities and a river advocacy group say the plan would destroy the delicate balance of saltwater and freshwater needed to preserve critical biological habitat and submerged vegetation.

"It is madness. We do not believe there is surplus water in the river," said Neil Armingeon, the St. Johns riverkeeper. The position is a privately funded advocate for the river.

"We are not going to stand by and let the St. Johns and Ocklawaha rivers be degraded," he said.