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NATION IN BRIEF: Coast Guard crew survives crash in Utah

The Associated Press . U.S. Coast Guard Capt. John Hardin speaks at the Elizabeth City, N.C. Airstation on Wednesday about the MH-60T helicopter crash in Utah.

The Associated Press . U.S. Coast Guard Capt. John Hardin speaks at the Elizabeth City, N.C. Airstation on Wednesday about the MH-60T helicopter crash in Utah.

SALT LAKE CITY -- Two crew members remained in critical condition Thursday after a Coast Guard helicopter crashed in the Utah mountains.

The helicopter with five aboard crashed Wednesday morning as the crew was headed back to its base in Elizabeth City, N.C., after providing security support for the Winter Olympics.

University Hospital officials said Thursday afternoon that Cmdr. Patrick Shaw of Juneau, Alaska and Petty Officer 2nd Class Gina Panuzzi, of Lacey, Wash., remained in critical condition. Both suffered internal injuries.

A third crew member, Lt. Cmdr. Steven Cerveny, of Lincoln, Neb., was in serious condition after suffering a broken leg.

Two others aboard were not seriously injured.

Paterson support wanes, even in critical circles

NEW YORK -- David Paterson, New York's first black governor and a product of the Harlem political machine, faced rapidly waning support Thursday even among New York City's most influential black leaders, while his top spokesman resigned and said he couldn't ''in good conscience continue.''

The Rev. Al Sharpton convened a meeting of black politicians at a soul food restaurant in Harlem in an effort to craft a message asking Paterson to resign, according to a senior state Democrat briefed on the meeting.

A state panel accused Paterson on Wednesday of illegally obtaining World Series tickets, then lying about it. That charge came on top of an investigation of whether the governor or staff members had inappropriate contact with a woman who made -- but later inexplicably dropped -- an abuse complaint against an aide who had accompanied Paterson to the baseball game four days earlier.

Officials: Small plane crashes into Va. house

LOUISA, Va. -- Officials said a plane crashed into a house in central Virginia on Thursday, killing the pilot and setting the building on fire.

Authorities said the owner of the one-and-a-half story house was in the basement and was able to escape.

Virginia state police said the plane landed around noon Thursday at Louisa County Airport and then took off with 148 gallons of fuel before crashing minutes later about a quarter of a mile from the airport.

No one else was on board.

Elusive monkey continues to dodge captors

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- A monkey that has eluded capture in the Tampa Bay area for more than a year has again escaped from Florida wildlife officials.

Authorities were called to a neighborhood in St. Petersburg on Wednesday when the rhesus macaque monkey was spotted. It was twice hit with tranquilizer darts, but still got away by ducking behind a drug store and a church.

Wildlife rehabilitator Vernon Yates said the tranquilizers don't appear to affect the animal, though officials have increased the dosage each time they've used the drug on the monkey.

Yates said the monkey is smart, even stopping to check traffic before crossing a busy street.

Officials didn't say how the monkey got loose. They said it isn't considered a threat to humans.

Woman gets life sentence for burning dancer

LOS ANGELES -- A San Fernando Valley woman was sentenced to life in prison Thursday for dousing a bikini dancer with gasoline and setting her on fire at a club called ''Babes & Beer.''

Rianne Theriault-Odom, 28, was sentenced in Van Nuys Superior Court for the Feb. 5, 2009, attack on Roberta Busby. The Simi Valley woman received burns over 40 percent of her body and has had more than two dozen skin grafts.

6 held for trial in slaying of Pa. disabled woman

GREENSBURG, Pa. -- A trial has been ordered for six people accused of torturing a mentally disabled western Pennsylvania woman by forcing her to drink urine and detergent before stabbing her to death.

A Westmoreland County judge on Thursday ordered all six defendants accused in last month's slaying of 30-year-old Jennifer Daugherty held for trial on charges including homicide and kidnapping.

Prosecutors say the three men and three women also beat Daugherty, bound her in Christmas lights and forced her write a suicide note before stabbing her to death.