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NATION: Drink, not drugs sickened Wash. college students

Drink, not drugs sickened Wash. college students

ELLENSBURG, Wash. -- An investigation has determined that a high-alcohol caffeinated drink, not date-rape drugs, sickened Central Washington University students at an off-campus party earlier this month.

Students at the party had blood-alcohol levels that ranged from 0.12 percent to 0.35 percent after consuming cans of the drink called Four Loko, CWU President James L. Gaudino said at a news conference Monday. Other students mixed the drink with additional alcohol, he said.

Nine students were hospitalized after the Oct. 8 party at a house in Roslyn, where about 50 people had been drinking.

Four Loko is made by Phusion Projects Inc., of Chicago. It comes in several varieties, including fruit punch and blue raspberry. A message left with the company was not immediately returned.

Washington state Attorney General Rob McKenna said his office would lead an effort to ban such caffeinated malt liquors this year after a recent proposal died in the state Legislature.

Three inmates, one a murderer, escape from jail

PATTONSBURG, Mo. -- Three inmates, including a convicted murderer, escaped from a northwest Missouri jail by crawling under a fence, leading authorities to lock down the surrounding community's school and to go door-to-door warning residents.

The inmates made their break Sunday night from the Daviess/DeKalp County jail in Pattonsburg wearing orange prison jumpsuits and no shoes, authorities said Monday.

In Pattonsburg, the lone school was locked down Monday and members of the fire department were sent door-to-door to tell residents to be vigilant.

Dad of missing girl arrested for bad checks

HICKORY, N.C. -- The father of a missing 10-year-old disabled girl was arrested Monday on several charges unrelated to the girl's disappearance, joining his wife who has been in custody for two weeks as investigators unsuccessfully searched wooded areas and a landfill.

Police believe Zahra Baker, who was reported missing Oct. 9, is dead. She uses hearing aids and has a prosthetic leg because of bone cancer.

Her father, Adam Baker, 33, is facing one count each of assault with a deadly weapon and failure to return rental property; two counts of communicating threats and five counts of writing worthless checks.

Man complains to police about buying bad pot

UNIONTOWN, Pa. -- A southwestern Pennsylvania man called 911 to complain about some terrible marijuana he had just purchased, which turned out to be something other than pot.

Police say the man told officers he bought the substance earlier that day and that ''it was nasty'' when he smoked it.

Uniontown Detective Donald Gmitter says a field test determined the substance wasn't pot at all, but police didn't say what it was.

Even though the 21-year-old man didn't technically buy marijuana, he isn't off the hook.

Sgt. Wayne Brown tells the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that Wednesday's incident remains under investigation, and the man could face a charge of possessing a counterfeit controlled substance.

Prosecutors: Police erred in Levy case

WASHINGTON -- Prosecutors acknowledged Monday that police made a huge mistake nearly a decade ago when they focused on then-Congressman Gary Condit in the disappearance of Washington intern Chandra Levy, but they told a jury they now have the right man.

Ingmar Guandique, of El Salvador, is charged with the attempted sexual assault, kidnapping and killing of Levy in the city's Rock Creek Park in May 2001. Levy was romantically linked to Condit, and the California Democrat was once a suspect. Police no longer believe he had anything to do with Levy's death.

With leak fixed, shuttle ready for Monday launch

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Space shuttle Discovery has new seals and is no longer leaking.

NASA says now that the repairs are completed, everything is looking good for liftoff next Monday. This will be Discovery's final flight. NASA is retiring its shuttles next year.