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March 31, 2013 at 10:15 PM   |   Comments

3 dead in 95-vehicle pileup

FANCY GAP, Va., March 31 (UPI) -- A 95-vehicle pileup on fog-shrouded Interstate 77 near the Virginia-North Carolina line Sunday left three people dead and 30 injured, police said.

Mike Conroy of the Virginia State Police said the massive accident began about 1 p.m.

"Fog was a major contributing factor. I am assuming it was one accident and then a cluster after that," Conroy told The Carroll News.

The smashed vehicles were strewn over a stretch of one-half to three-quarters of a mile, forcing the closure of the interstate's southbound lanes for about 30 miles from Fort Chiswell to Lambsburg so emergency vehicles could get to the victims.

"It's the worst accident I've ever seen," Virginia State Police 1st Sgt. Mike Musser told the newspaper.


Man rams Walmart with car, beats people

SAN JOSE, Calif., March 31 (UPI) -- A man smashed a car into an entrance of a Walmart store in San Jose, Calif., Sunday and then beat shoppers with a blunt object, police said.

Police said at least four people were injured in the 11:15 a.m. mayhem before the unidentified assailant was apprehended, the San Jose Mercury News reported. San Jose police officer Albert Morales said at least one victim was seriously injured.

The car wounded up a few dozen feet inside the store.

"People were running out of the store, people were crying, people were just confused about what was going on," Morales told the newspaper.

The suspect, described as a man in his 30s, was arrested and taken to a hospital for treatment for injuries that were not life-threatening.

"I stood there shocked," said Sharon Kaye of San Jose, who witnessed the episode. "It was very scary.

Tianna Doan of San Jose said one victim was a Walmart cashier who was struck on the head. She said shoppers tried to take the driver out of the car and hold him down.

Another unidentified witness told the newspaper the man hit people with a metal bar before being restrained by shoppers.


Search for Tibetan landslide victims slow

LHASA, Tibet, March 31 (UPI) -- Searchers Sunday had found 17 of the 83 Tibetan miners buried in a landslide.

Xinhua News Agency reported the recovery work has been hampered by freezing temperatures, altitude sickness and risks of more landslides, the BBC reported.

Yang Dongliang, head of the State Administration of Work Safety, said resources were still being sent to the scene.

"As long as there is a gleam of hope, we will never give up our rescue efforts," he said.

About 3,500 police officers, firefighters and doctors, 300 pieces of big machinery, 10 sniffer dogs and 20 life detectors have been sent to the mine to recover the dead and rescue any survivors of the Friday accident, Xinhua reported.

Temperatures as low as 26 degrees Fahrenheit have stifled the scenting ability of dogs capable of detecting bodies, officials said.

Cracks visible on nearby mountains suggest additional landslides are possible.

"We will carry out an in-depth investigation into the exact cause of the landslide," Yang said, adding the final results will be made public.

The mine in Maizhokunggar county produces copper, silver and gold. It is operated by a subsidiary of a company owned by the Chinese government.


2 California gold heist suspects ID'd

YREKA, Calif., March 31 (UPI) -- Authorities have disclosed the names of two men they suspect stole $1.25 million worth of gold last year in Northern California.

The Siskiyou County Sheriff's Department said arrest warrants have been issued for David Dean Johnson, 49, of El Cerrito and Scott Wayne Bailey, 51, of El Sobrante, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday.

"This has been a long and arduous investigation involving ... suspects responsible for burglarizing our courthouse and stealing a historic gold display and other antiquities which cannot be replaced," Sheriff Jon Lopey said in a release.

"These thieves stole a part of Siskiyou County history. Although we still have a lot of work to do in this case, the issuance of the felony arrest warrants should result in the arrest of the suspects."

The pair are suspected of taking the gold and other items from a display case in the lobby of the county courthouse.

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