[News-Heads]

[ANCHOR=Kim]

Facing the music, but without the help of Internet providers--

Today a key court decision on the issue of on-line piracy.
(---------------)
[ENG#=1]
[VO-NAT]


And THIS is what will fill the empty space at the site of the World Trade Center.
Two designers unveil their plan for the new Freedom Tower.
(------------)

[WX-Head]
[ANCHOR=Brent]
[SS=None]

Light snow for some, flurries for others, but cold temperatures for everyone. We'll take a look at the conditions around the region and what you can expect for the last shopping weekend before Christmas.
(------------------)
[ANCHOR=KIM 2-Shot]


Join us for News 7 at noon, straight ahead.

[Noon-open]
[SUPER=#4054; News 7 Headline Banner]
[SUPER=@Kimberly1;]
[SUPER=@Brent1;]


[Video-Open]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=net]
[GRAPHIC=None]
[ENG#=2]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


A federal appeals court says Internet providers DON'T have to point the finger at people suspected of illegally distributing music on-line.
(------------)


[Music-Downloads]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=News7@Noon]
[ENG#=3]


Good Afternoon, I'm Kimberly McBroom.
It a major setback to the recording industry as it tries to track down those who distribute pirated music.
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Blacksburg/September;]


A federal appeals court has rejected the industry's efforts to force Internet providers to identify suspected abusers.
Today's decision overturns a trial judge's ruling, which approved use of subpoenas to require Verizon to turn over names and addresses of at least four Internet subscribers.
Since then, Verizon has identified dozens of its other subscribers to music industry attorneys.
The Recording Industry of America had claimed that Verizon was responsible for downloaded music, but the appeals court rejected that argument.
(------------)


[Freedom-Tower]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=None]
[ENG#=4]


The two men who battled over building a new office tower on the site of the World Trade Center have reached a compromise--
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-New York, NY;]


Today the designers unveiled their plans for the new Freedom Tower-- which will stand a symbolic 17-hundred-76 feet and include 70 floors of office space.
Its creators say the tower is meant to evoke the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=This is a very]
[SUPER=01-Gov. George Pataki/(R) New York;]
[RUNS=:12]
[OUT Q=heroes we lost.]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


Meanwhile, the plan follows months of often-contentious negotiations between architects Daniel Libeskind (LEE'-behs-kihnd) and David Childs.
The final design keeps many parts of Libeskind's (LEE- behs-kihnd's) original plan, but appears to smooth out some of its most angular elements.
(------------)


[Malvo]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=Lee Malvo]
[ENG#=2]


It's a life or death discussion for convicted D-C sniper Lee Malvo.
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=04-File Tape;]


A jury in Chesapeake is hearing testimony today in the sentencing phase of Malvo's trial.
They're deciding whether the 18- year- old should face the death penalty for his role in last year's sniper shootings.
Yesterday, jurors convicted Malvo in the shooting death of F-B-I analyst Linda Franklin.
She was one of ten people killed in last year's attacks.
(------------)


[Kobe]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=Kobe Bryant]
[ENG#=3]


N-B-A star Kobe Bryant is appearing in a Colorado courtroom today for the latest chapter in his sexual assault case.
Bryant's attorneys will tell the judge why they should be allowed to introduce medical records of the alleged victim.
Jennifer Miller reports.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=Kobe Bryant's]
[SUPER=03-Eagle, CO; :00]
[SUPER=01-Gus Guarino/Legal Expert; :31]
[SUPER=01-Karen Steinhauser/Legal Expert; :54]
[SUPER=01-Jennifer Miller/CBS News; 1:23]
[RUNS=1:40]
[OUT Q=Miller, CBS News, Eagle, CO.]



(( KOBE BRYANT'S DEFENSE TEAM ARRIVED FOR COURT WITH THEIR STAR CLIENT ... AND AN ARGUMENT TO OPEN HIS ACCUSER'S MEDICAL RECORDS ...
THE WOMAN SAYS BRYANT RAPED HER AT THIS HOTEL LAST JUNE. BRYANT SAYS THE SEX WAS CONSENSUAL.
HIS ATTORNEYS HAVE SUBPOENAED THE VICTIM'S MOTHER AND FRIENDS, AS WELL AS RECORDS AT A NEARBY HOSPITAL AND COUNSELING CENTER. THE DEFENSE CLAIMS THE WOMAN TWICE TRIED TO COMMIT SUICIDE BEFORE THE INCIDENT WITH BRYANT AND HAS BEEN PRESCRIBED AN ANTI-PSYCHOTIC DRUG OFTEN USED FOR SCHIZOPHRENIA.
GUS GUARINO/LEGAL EXPERT "They're looking for anything that might affect a person's credibility or ability to perceive, drugs have that ... quality."
AND BECAUSE THE WOMAN CALLED HER EX-BOYFRIEND AFTER TRYING TO KILL HERSELF .... THE DEFENSE SAYS THAT SHOWS WHAT THEY CALL "EXTREME ATTENTION SEEKING BEHAVIOR" ... WHICH THEY SAY MAKES IT MORE LIKELY HER ALLEGATIONS ARE FALSE.
PROF.KAREN STEINHAUSER/LEGAL EXPERT (UNIV. COLORADO) "Attempting suicide to try and get attention isn't the same thing as accusing somebody of sexual assault to the point where you are trying to put them in jail for the rest of their lives."
MEDICAL RECORDS ARE PROTECTED UNDER PATIENT-CLIENT PRIVILEGE, BUT BRYANT'S TEAM IS EXPECTED TO TRY TO SHOW THE WOMAN WAIVED THAT RIGHT WHEN SHE DISCUSSED HER PROBLEMS WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY ... PEOPLE NOW CALLED AS WITNESSES FOR THE DEFENSE.
STANDUP CLOSE: EVEN IF THE DEFENSE GAINS ACCESS TO THE MEDICAL RECORDS, THEY MUST STILL FIGHT TO USE THEM EVIDENCE IN COURT. BUT BECAUSE THIS IS ONE OF THOSE TOUCHY SUBJECTS THAT CAN BE RAISED ON APPEAL ... OR EVEN REVERSE A CASE ... THE JUDGE ISN'T EXPECTED TO ISSUE HIS RULING TODAY.
)) [WX-Tease] ((KIM TOSS TO BRENT)) [12/18/2003]
[SS=NONE]


BRENT in WX-CENTER
[WXPRO/FULL] RADAR
[SCHOOLTOUCH/FULL] Brent Adlibs School Announcements
[WXPRO/FULL] STORY

[SS=NONE]




(BRENT TOSS to KIM)






[Iraq]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=Iraq]
[ENG#=4]


It happened earlier this month--
But U-S officials are just now talking about a rebel ambush attack that could have proven deadly for America's top official in Iraq.
That, as more attacks continue against U-S soldiers.
Teri Okita has the latest.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=Curious Iraqis]
[SUPER=03-Baghdad, Iraq; :00]
[SUPER=01-Teri Okita/CBS News; :14]
[SUPER=01-Paul Bremer/U. S. Administrator in Iraq; :35 (QUICK)]
[RUNS=:56]
[OUT Q=Okita, CBS News, Baghdad.]


(( CURIOUS IRAQIS EXAMINE WHAT'S LEFT OF A U-S TANKER TRUCK FOLLOWING YET ANOTHER ATTACK ON AMERICAN FORCES. THIS TIME 2 SOLDIERS WERE WOUNDED.

(OKITA STANDUP BRIDGE)

ADDING TO US CONCERNS, MAJOR FACTIONS ARE STILL VYING FOR CONTROL. SADDAM LOYALISTS ARE SUSPECTED OF ATTACKING THIS SHITTE MUSLIM OFFICE HERE IN BAGHDAD.
ONE PERSON WAS KILLED AND NUMEROUS OTHERS INJURED.
AND THERE'S WORD TODAY...THAT U.S. ADMINISTRATOR PAUL BREMER HAD A CLOSE CALL ABOUT 2 WEEKS AGO. OFFICIALS SAY HE WAS RIDING IN A CONVOY WHEN A ROADSIDE BOMB EXPLODED...FOLLOWED BY SMALL ARMS FIRE.

SOT: PAUL BREMER/U-S ADMINISTRATOR IN IRAQ

"AS YOU CAN SEE IT WASN'T SUCCESSFUL."
OFFICIALS DON'T BELIEVE IT WAS AN ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT...BUT JUST ANOTHER RANDOM ATTACK ON U-S FORCES.
TODAY'S ATTACKS RE-ENFORCE THE POINT U-S OFFICIALS HAVE BEEN MAKING ALL ALONG...THAT DESPITE THE CAPTURE OF SADDAM HUSSEIN...HIS SUPPORTERS STILL HAVE PLENTY OF FIGHT LEFT.
TERI OKITA, CBS NEWS, BAGHDAD
)) [Tease1] [HARD MUSIC UNDER]
[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[ENG#=V10]

What do you eat the day after your final meal? Still ahead, the Supreme Court grants a condemned killer a stay of execution.
(--------------)
[VO-NAT ]


And a state study looks at improving Virginia's rails, and figures how many trucks that would take off our highways.

(---------------)

[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #1]


[New-Members]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=jwi]
[TAPE#=03-48 47:40]
[GRAPHIC=None]
[ENG#=4]


Roanoke County's new and re-elected leaders attended court today.
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Salem;]

The County Investiture ceremony took place at the Roanoke County Court House this morning. The four county constitutional officers who were elected last month took oaths to uphold both the constitutions of Virginia and the United States. Supervisor Fuzzy Minnix is retiring from the Board of Supervisors after 12 years. Michael Wray will replace him in the Cave Spring District of the county.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 10:56:18]
[IN Q=I'm very humbled]
[SUPER=01-Michael Wray/Board of Supervisors;]
[RUNS=13]
[OUT Q=next four years]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]

Two school board members were also sworn in to serve for the next four years.
(------------)



[11Reid]


[ANCHOR=Kim]
[NEWSCAST=Kim]
[WRITER=mmu]
[TAPE#=03-49 TC34:12]
[GRAPHIC=James Reid]
[ENG#=1]
(MINI-OPEN)

[MINI-OPEN]
James Edward Reid was scheduled to be dead by now. Instead, he is likely to live at least until next summer.


(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Christiansburg/1997]


Reid is the convicted killer of Annie Lester, an 87-year-old Christiansburg woman.
A federal appeals court issued a stay of his execution on Wednesday.
Last night, just two hours before he was scheduled to die by lethal injection, the U-S Supreme Court upheld the stay.
Reid is arguing that lethal injection constitutes a form of cruel and unusual punishment.
(/////SOT/////)
[SOT 16:08:51]
[IN Q=IT APPEARS TO BE AN ILLUSION]

((STEVEN BENJAMIN/CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: IT APPEARS TO BE AN ILLUSION NOW THAT LETHAL INJECTION IS A VERY PEACEFUL NICE PROCESS WHEN IN FACT ITS BEGINNING TO APPEAR THAT ITS ANYTHING BUT. WHAT WE'RE FINDING IS THAT IT'S AN HORRIFYING PROCESS INVOLVING SOMEONE BEING ABSOLUTELY PARALYZED AND SLOWLY FEELING THE TREMENDOUS PAIN OF SUFFOCATION AND DEATH WHILE BEING UNABLE TO COMMUNICATE.))
[SUPER=01-Steven Benjamin/Criminal Defense Attorney]
[RUNS=:24]
[OUT Q=BEING UNABLE TO COMMUNICATE.]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


The U-S Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a case similar to Reid's in June.
Reid's future will likely hinge on that outcome.
(------------)



[5-Smith]


[ANCHOR=Kim]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=jwi]
[TAPE#=503-03 1:00:20]
[GRAPHIC=Sentencing]
[ENG#=2]

The man accused of shooting a Florida tourist in Roanoke faces a long time in prison. He's been sentenced to 76 years.

(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Roanoke;]

Derrick Wakie (Wah-KEY) Smith was sentenced yesterday for the March 27th shooting of Ryan Taboada (Tah- BOH- duh). Smith's sister testified on his behalf. She says he needs to pay for his sins, but also needs to be free for his two children.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 22:30:51]
[IN Q=He knows what he did]

((MARIE SMITH: HE KNOWS WHAT HE DID WAS WRONG, I KNOW WHAT HE DID WAS WRONG. HE WANTED TO PAY FOR HIS SINS, BUT AT LEAST LET HIM COME BACK OUT OF JAIL. WE WON'T EVER GET TO SEE HIM NOW.)) ((NEIL HORN: I ASKED FOR A LIFE SENTENCE DURING MY CLOSING ARGUMENTS BUT FOR ALL INTENTS AND PURPOSES 76 YEARS IS A LIFE SENTENCE FOR MISTER SMITH.))
[SUPER=01-Marie Smith/Derrick Smith's Sister; :00]
[SUPER=01-Neil Horn/Commonwealth's Attorney; :10]
[RUNS=19]
[OUT Q=for Mister Smith]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=04-March;]

Ryan Taboada (Ta-BOH-da) was shot down during a robbery attempt as he and his family were checking into the Holiday Inn Express in Roanoke. Smith then took off in the Taboada's vehicle with their daughter still in the back seat. Taboada is said to be recovering from his wounds.
(------------)



[81-Traffic]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=net]
[GRAPHIC=Interstate 81]
[ENG#=3]


Major work on Virginia's rail system could mean a lot fewer tractor trailers on Interstate- 81.
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=04-File Tape;]


A state study says major improvements to Virginia's rail system could take 500- thousands trucks a year off the highway.
The State Department of Rail and Public Transportation commissioned the study.
It suggests that 492- million dollars in improvements could reduce tractor-trailer traffic on the interstate by five percent by the year two thousand- 20.
Officials say I- 81 typically handles more than twice the truck volume it was designed to handle.
(------------)


[11Neighborhood]


[ANCHOR=Kim]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=jus]
[TAPE#=03-52 TC35:20]
[GRAPHIC=none]
[ENG#=4]


Some old neighborhoods in Roanoke are about to get a new lease on life, thanks to a program called the city's Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative.
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Roanoke]


Those on tap for a facelift are the Gainsboro and Gilmer Avenue neighborhoods in Northwest Roanoke.
Last night, residents gathered for an informational meeting at Lucy Addison Magnet School.
[SUPER=04-March;]


They heard how the city has already spent more than six million dollars making improvements between Jamison and Bullitt Avenue in southeast Roanoke.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 23:32:22]
[IN Q=It's an improving]

((CARL COOPER/ROANOKE NEIGHBORHOOD ADVOCATES: IT'S AN IMPROVING COMMUNITY AND IT'S A COMMUNITY WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF OTHER NEIGHBORHOODS IN ROANOKE AND THE CITY ADMINISTRATION AND COUNCIL IS BEGINNING TO TAKE BACK IT'S FORMER GLORY DAYS.))
[SUPER=01-Carl Cooper/Roanoke Neighborhood Advocates;]
[RUNS=:10]
[OUT Q=former glory days]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


To accomplish that, residents can apply for no interest loans to help fix up their homes.
The city also plans to buy vacant lots and fill them with new houses.
Other improvements include easing traffic, increasing green space, and providing grants to area businesses.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 23:28:40]
[IN Q=It really does a lot]

((EVELYN BETHEL/GAINSBORO AREA RESIDENT: IT REALLY DOES A LOT FOR THE NEIGHBORHOOD AND IT IMPROVES THE OVERALL APPEARANCE OF THE CITY FROM HOTEL ROANOKE UP TO ST. ANDREWS CATHOLIC CHURCH.))
[SUPER=01-Evelyn Bethel/Gainsboro Area Resident;]
[RUNS=:10]
[OUT Q=St. Andrews Catholic Church]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


The city plans to spend nearly 20 million dollars in the Gainsboro - Gilmer Avenue areas.
Construction is set to begin this summer and the entire project will take nearly three years to complete.
(------------)




[Tease2] [SOFT MUSIC UNDER]
[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[ENG#=V10]


Stocks try to continue their December rally. The mid-day numbers are still ahead.
(-----------------)
[VO-NAT ]


And the numbers look good at Virginia Tech -- millions of dollars for new research grants and projects.
(-----------------)

[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #2]


[11Tech-Allen]


[ANCHOR=Kim]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=rde]
[TAPE#=03-43 TC1:36:24]
[GRAPHIC=Virginia Tech]
[ENG#=1]


The financial picture for Virginia's public colleges and universities may be improving. For starters, Governor Warner isn't proposing any cuts in his next budget.
And at Virginia Tech, Congress is sending millions for research. New River Valley Bureau Chief Rachel DePompa takes a look at the numbers.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=It's not just]
[SUPER=03-Blacksburg; :00]
[SUPER=@Allen; :18]
[SUPER=01-Charles Steger/Virginia Tech President; :47]
[SUPER=@Rachel1; 1:01]
[RUNS=1:33]
[OUT Q=News 7, Blacksburg]


((It's not just the white stuff coming down at Virginia Tech these days. School leaders are finally seeing some glimpses of green. Senator George Allen says he's pushed Congress to send the University an estimated 13-million dollars in recent weeks for research projects.

(///// SOT /////)
[SOT:8:22:00]
[IN Q=These appropriations]

((SENATOR ALLEN: THESE APPROPRIATIONS ARE GONNA BE VERY IMPORTANT AS THEY COME FORWARD WHETHER IT'S HOMELAND SECURITY, NATIONAL DEFENSE, MEDICAL RESEARCH. ALL OF IT'S REALLY GREAT FOR JOBS INVESTMENTS AND IMPROVING OUR LIVES.)) [RUNS:15]
[OUT Q=our lives.]


But money for research isn't the only good news Tech leaders got this week. Governor Mark Warner's isn't proposing any budget cuts for higher Education. In fact his budget includes 144-million new dollars for Virginia's colleges and universities.

(///// SOT /////)
[SOT: 13:27:00 ]
[IN Q=The amount is]

((DR. CHARLES STEGER:THE AMOUNT IS 72 MILLION DOLLARS PUT TOWARDS THE BASE ADEQUACY FUNDING PROBLEM THAT THE INSTITUTIONS FACE AND IT'S A VERY GOOD STEP FORWARD COMPARED TO WHAT HAS HAPPENED IN THE PAST YEAR.)) [RUNS:14]
[OUT Q=in the past year.]



(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=In the last]

((RACHEL DEPOMPA: In the last two years Tech's had to cut 72-million dollars from its budget. This year the university's teaching more than 400 fewer classes. Leaders say any new money would be welcome.)) [RUNS:12]
[OUT Q=would be welcome.]



(///// SOT /////)
[SOT:15:03:00 ]
[IN Q=We would]

((DR. CHARLES STEGER: WE WOULD SPEND THEM TO REBUILD THE FACULTY AND KEEP CLASS SIZES DOWN AND THE QUALITY OF EDUCATION UP AND I KNOW ALL OF OUR MEMBERS OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY WILL LISTEN TO THAT AND I SUSPECT THAT THEY WILL DO EVERYTHING THEY CAN TO BE HELPFUL TO US.)) [RUNS:13]
[OUT Q=helpful to us.]


The general assembly will take up the issue of new funding for higher ed in its upcoming session. Rachel DePompa, News 7, Blacksburg.))
[Weather] [NOON WEATHER] [12/18/2003] [TWO SHOT]
[WEATHERNET/FULL] WDBJ CURRENTS ZOOM

[MUSIC UNDER] [COMMERCIAL]

[CK/WEATHERNET] Multi-Site Data
[CK/WXPRO]WEATHER MAPS [WXPRO/FULL] FORECASTS EXTENDED FORECAST

[Stocks]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly 2-Shot]
[NEWSCAST=noon]
[WRITER=kor]
[TAPE# none]
[GRAPHIC=None]

A mixed day so far on Wall Street. At Noon
[super=460-x/18/y/9;]

the Dow was UP 18 points, but Nasdaq was DOWN 9 points.
[Tease3] [SPORTS MUSIC UNDER]
[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[ENG#=V10]

The baseball that made Cubs fans cry goes for some big bucks. The details are just ahead.
(----------------)
[VO-NAT ]


And scientists hope for a big Christmas gift .. from Mars. If all goes well, a spacecraft lands on the Red Planet Christmas morning.
(---------------)

[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #3]


[S-CUBS-BALL]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=ejo]
[TAPE#=None]
[GRAPHIC=MLB]
[ENG#=None]


How much is a baseball worth?
Plenty, if it is now a part of the Chicago Cubs' painful history. The baseball deflected by a fan in game 6 of the National League Championship Series has sold for 106 thousand 600 dollars at auction. It's the ball that appeared to be headed for Moises Alou's glove.
Instead, it was the first of many dominoes that fell on the Cubs, who lost the series.


[S-Stagg]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=twe]
[TAPE#=SP-154 TC12353]
[GRAPHIC=Stagg Bowl]
[ENG#=2]


Tomorrow's Stagg Bowl couldn't ask for a better matchup. It's number one versus number two .. the coach with the all-time record for wins against the coach with best career- winning percentage. Travis Wells has the story from Salem.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=]
[SUPER=03-Salem; :00]
[SUPER=01-John Gagliardi/413 Career Wins; :30]
[SUPER=01-Larry Kehres/Mount Union Head Coach; :55]
[SUPER=@travis1; 1:07]
[SUPER=01-Randell Knapp/16 TD's this Season for Mt. Union; 1:24]
[RUNS=1:40]
[OUT Q=News 7 Sports."]


((As the Salem Stadium staff put the finishing touches on the cold turf, both the Purple Raiders and the Johnnies were hard at work themselves. One team will polish off a perfect season with a win on Saturday, and for Saint John's Coach John Gagliardi it would be career victory number 414. The 77 year old is college football's all time wins leader. Throughout his 55 years on the sidelines, his philosophy has been simple, yet strange, but more importantly successful.
John: Larry:
Travis:
A crowd between 4 and 5 thousand is expected for the Stagg Party which kicks off Saturday at 11. In Salem, Travis Wells, News 7 Sports.))


[Beagle-Mission]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
[NEWSCAST=Noon]
[WRITER=kmc]
[TAPE#=Net]
[GRAPHIC=None]
[ENG#=3]


Imagine spending Christmas on the Red Planet--
(------------)
[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Darmstadt, Germany;]


That's what a European space probe will be doing.
Space controllers say they've successfully launched the probe that'll collect rock samples in their search for signs of life on Mars.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT]
[IN Q=We can confirm]

((MICHAEL MCKAY/FLIGHT OPERATION DIRECTOR: WE CAN CONFIRM WE HAVE BEAGLE 2 SEPARATION SUCCESSFULLY FROM MARS EXPRESS AND IT HAS NOW STARTED ON ITS SIX-DAY JOURNEY DOWN TO THE MARTIAN ATMOSPHERE WHERE IT WILL HOPEFULLY ON THE 25TH DECEMBER WE WILL JOIN IT GOING INTO OUR ORBIT ROUND MARS ITSELF. ))
[SUPER=01-Michael McKay/Flight Operations Director;]
[RUNS=:14]
[OUT Q=Mars itself.]
(------------)
[VO-NAT]


The British-built Beagle-Two probe is scheduled to land on the Martian surface Christmas morning
It's considered a critical step in Europe's first mission to explore the Red Planet for signs of life.
At the same time, the Mars Express space craft that launched the probe will orbit overhead collecting radar data.
(------------)



[Quickcast]
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