Gunman kills police officer, wounds 3 others

' CUTLER BAY, Fla. - A gunman killed a police officer and injured three others during a traffic stop Thursday, triggering a manhunt in a suburban Miami neighborhood, officials said.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Alvarez confirmed that an officer died. All four were taken to hospitals, but authorities refused to release further information because they were trying to notify the officers' families.

The officers were conducting burglary surveillance when they stopped the man because he was driving a car erratically, said Linda O'Brien, a police spokeswoman. The man opened fire with a high-powered weapon and fled. It was not immediately clear whether the officers returned fire.

Convicted rapist who apologized released from jail

' RICHMOND, Va. - A man who sexually assaulted a fellow University of Virginia student then apologized to her two decades later as part of the Alcoholics Anonymous program was released Thursday after serving less than six months of an 18-month sentence.

William Beebe, 42, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty in November to aggravated sexual battery for attacking Liz Seccuro at a fraternity party in 1984. In March, a judge ordered a 10-year prison sentence with all but 18 months suspended.

Authorities dismiss Fossett wanted to vanish

' RENO, Nev. - Authorities investigating the mysterious disappearance of millionaire adventurer Steve Fossett said Thursday they've ruled out some of the more unlikely explanations for why they haven't found his plane, including the possibility he wanted to vanish.

No trace has been found of his single-engine plane despite a small air force that has scoured the canyons and hillsides along the Sierra Nevada's eastern front for 11 days, raising the prospect that he's just not there.

Burglar who got stuck in chimney gets two years

' WEST COVINA, Calif. - A man who got stuck in a chimney while trying to burglarize a Los Angeles County home was sentenced to two years in prison.

Marco Antonio Espinoza was sentenced Wednesday after pleading no contest to a first-degree burglary charge.

Espinoza, 35, was arrested Aug. 26 after the homeowners found him stuck in their chimney. He allegedly told police he was doing construction on the house and claimed other people were with him.