The death toll is steadily rising after major earthquake rocks Colombia.
And the Senate turns its attention back to witnesses when the impeachment trial of President Clinton resumes today.
News 7 at noon is next.
The death toll has risen dramatically in the worst earthquake to hit Columbia in a century.
More than one-thousand are confirmed dead and rescue effort are intensifying this afternoon.
Rhoda Metcalfe has the latest.
[SUPER=03-Armenia, Colombia; :00]
[SUPER=01-Rhoda Metcalfe/Reporting; :55]
[OUT Q=Bogata Colombia]
(( THE DEATH TOLL WILL CERTAINLY RISE AS RESCUE WORKERS CONTINUE TO
SEARCH FOR BODIES IN THE RUBBLE OF YESTERDAY'S EEARTHQUAKE.
CITIZENS ARE COMBING THROUGH WHAT'S LEFT OF HOMES AND BUSINESSES.
EARTHMOVING EQUIPMENT IS STANDING BY...BUT EMERGENCY CREWS DON'T
WANT TO USE IT FOR FEAR OF CRUSHING VICTIMS WHO MAY BE TRAPPED IN AIR
POCKETS. THE QUAKE MEASURING SIX POINT OH ON THE RICHTER SCALE
STRUCK COLOMBIA'S CENTRAL COFFEE GROWING AREA AT 1:19PM. IT WAS STRONG
ENOUGH TO BE FELT THROUGHOUT MOST OF THE COUNTRY. TWENTY TOWNS AND
VILLAGES ACROSS FIVE PROVINCES WERE HARD HIT.
NATSOT OF MAYOR--
THE MAYOR OF PERERIA SAYS IT IS A CHAOTIC SITUATION AND HELP IS
NEEDED. HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOMS ARE CLOGGED WITH VICTIMS. ENTIRE
FAMILIES FORCED FROM THEIR HOMES STAYED IN SHELTERS OR TOUGHED IT
OUT ON THE STREETS HUDDLED AROUND FIRES.
AS FAR AS HELP GOES --A DISASTER RELIEF TEAM FROM FLORIDA LEFT
THIS MORNING FROM MIAMI. COLOMBIAN OFCICIALS SAY A JAPANESE TEAM WOULD
ARRIVE LATER TODAY.
RHODA METCALF FOR CBS NEWS ARMENIA COLOMBIA))
On Capitol Hill this afternoon House prosecutors are close to finalizing the list of witnesses they want at the President's impeachment trial.
Sources say they want to call Monica Lewinsky, Clinton friend Vernon Jordan and White House aide Sidney Blumenthal
The question of witnesses will be debated when the trial resumes later today.
Lee Cowan has an update from Washington.
[SUPER=01-Sen. Tom Harkin/(D) Iowa;]
[SUPER=01-Rep. Henry Hyde/(R) Impeachment Manager;]
[SUPER=01-Rep. Asa Hutchinson/(R) Impeachment Manager;]
[OUT Q=CBS NEWS WASHINGTON.]
((THE ONLY CERTAINTY IN THIS PROCESS TODAY IS THERE WILL BE A
LOT MORE UNCERTAINTY BEFORE ANY EXIT STRATEGY IS SEALED IN STONE.
(( SUPER: SEN. JOHN WARNER//R-VA ))(( SOT AT 21:56:20 ))
"Goodnight all! A full day of doing the nation's business."
(last night)WEARY SENATORS WORKED LATE INTO THE EVENING BEHIND CLOSED
DOORS WRESTLING WITH THE IDEA OF WHETHER TO DISMISS THE CASE ALL TOGETHER- DEBATE LASTED MORE THAN 4 HOURS, EVEN THOUGH MOST EXPECTED IT HAD LITTLE CHANCE OF PASSING.
BUT IT WAS THAT CLOAK OF SECRECY THAT HAD SOME SENATORS MORE
THAN UNCOMFORTABLE - AN EFFORT TO OPEN THE PROCEEDINGS FAILED LARGELY ALONG PARTY LINES- WITHOUT EVEN A CHANCE FOR DEBATE.
(( SUPER: SEN. TOM HARKIN/D-IA ))(monday) (( SOT AT 17:35:29 ))
"We are not dealing with matters of national security, we're
dealing with the removal of the President of the United States, something that effects every American citizen."
PUBLIC OR NOT, THE ISSUE OF WITNESSES REMAINS THE STICKING
POINT IN MOST OF THOSE BACK ROOM DELIBERATIONS.
AND REPUBLICANS ARE STRUGGLING TO FIND SOME KIND OF COMPROMISE THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM AT LEAST SOME LIMITED LIVE TESTIMONY.
SOT: REP. HENRY HYDE/R-IL/HOUSE JUDICIARY CMTE CHAIR
"the sorter the list ...pare it down to their essentials"
LIKELY NAMES ON THEIR WITNESS LIST WOULD INCLUDE MONICA
LEWINSKY, BETTY CURRIE, VERNON JORDAN, JOHN PPODESTA AND SIDNEY BLUMENTHAL.
THE KEY PLAYERS - WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF.
(( SUPER: REP. ASA HUTCHINSON/R-AR))
"Whenever you have ...important to make right decisions."))
Meantime, a court victory for prosecutor Kenneth Starr and a defeat for a Clinton friend.
An appeals court today reinstated the tax evasion charges against Webster Hubbell.
[GRAPHIC=VA Death Penalty]
David Lee Fisher is scheduled to die on March 25 for his conviction in a murder for hire case.
Fisher was convicted of hiring another man to kill 18 year old David Wilkey in 1983 and make it look like a hunting accident.
At age 57, Fisher is the oldest current Virginia death row inmate.
His lawyer plans to file a stay request with the U-S Supreme Court and a clemency petition with the governor.
A self-ordained minister and convicted child molester has been denied parole, at least for now.
Tony Leyva once claimed he sexually molested 100 boys during nationwide preaching tours.
In 1989, he was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison.
Yesterday, the U-S Parole Commission reversed an earlier decision to parole Leyva after family members, a federal judge and a prosecutor all asked them to reconsider.
Leyva does have a mandatory parole date in November of 2000.
[HARD MUSIC UNDER]
Promising economic news for Lynchburg is still ahead on News-7 at noon.
One of the cities newest plants is already expanding.
And Ericsson is laying off more than ten-thousand workers around the world.
But the company says its Lynchburg plant will be spared the ax.
[music up full]
[GRAPHIC=School Bus Ax]
The little girl badly hurt in yesterday's school bus accident on Route 220 died early this morning.
The girl's grandmother was killed when they were caught in a chain reaction accident involving a wrecker and a school bus.
61-year-old Geraldine Gillispie was waiting behind the bus when the wrecker hit her car.
8-year-old Emily Sturgil was a passenger.
The wrecker also slammed into the bus itself, where one young passenger had a close call.
Eric Earnhart has her story.
[IN Q=When the wrecker hit]
[SUPER=03-Franklin Co.; :00]
[SUPER=01-Larry Young/Grandfather; :13]
[SUPER=01-Anita Young/Bus Passenger; :20]
[SUPER=01-Tammy Young/Mother; 1:09]
[OUT Q=EE, News 7]
(( When the wrecker hit, 5-year-old Anita Young was in the worst possible place on the bus... standing in front of the open door... ready to step out.
Her grandfather, waiting at the house, saw it happen.
[IN Q=it happened]
((LARRY YOUNG/GRANDFATHER; IT HAPPENED SO FAST, I SAW MY MAILBOX GO INTO THE AIR AND THAT ROLL BACK WAS PUSHING THE SCHOOL BUS DOWN THE ROAD.))
[OUT Q=down the road]
[SOT 04:20:40 ]
[IN Q=I was on]
((ANITA YOUNG/PASSENGER; AND IT MADE THE BUS GO INTO THE GRASS AND I SLID DOWN THE STEPS))
[OUT Q=down the steps]
But NOT out the door... because her bus driver, JoAnn Brown... heard the wrecker hit the car behind her... and had just enough time to pull Anita safely back.
[IN Q=Ms Brown]
((ANITA YOUNG/PASSENGER; MRS. BROWN, SHE TOOK THE BACK OF MY COAT AND SHE HOLDED ON TO ME, AND IF SHE WOULDN'T HAVE HOLDED ON TO ME I WOULD HAVE BEEN OUT THE WINDOW.))
[OUT Q=out the window]
The force of the on-coming wrecker is obvious from the damage to the car in between it and the bus, where the impact killed the driver and critically injured a passenger...
But Anita was the ONLY child injured on the bus.
[IN Q=are you ok?]
ARE YOU OK NOW?
YES, I ONLY HURT MY BACK AND I HAVE A FEW SCRATCHES))
[OUT Q=a few scratches]
And she has a very grateful mom.
((TAMMY YOUNG/MOTHER; IT SCARED ME, BUT THANKS TO MS. BROWN, I CAN'T BE ANY MORE THANKFUL TO HER THAN I AM RIGHT NOW, CAUSE THERE'S NO TELLING WHAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED TO HER HAD SHE NOT GRABBED HER.))
[OUT Q=grabbed her]
Anita says she might have some bad dreams, but WILL get on the bus again.
Eric Earnhart, News 7))
[***WIPE TO FULL SCREEN BOARD WIPE***][Six-Promo]
[GRAPHIC=***WIPE TO BOARD WIPE***]
[Take Full Screen]
What can we do make our highways and school buses safer, and what ARE we doing?
And Join News 7 for continuing coverage, with in-depth reports and the very latest information tonight at six.
Snack food giant Frito Lay says it will expand its Lynchburg plant this year, adding dozens of new jobs.
Frito Lay says it is closing four of its older, unexpandable plants in the United States and shifting production to its newer facilities.
The Lynchburg plant, which opened two years ago, already employs about 175 people.
They currently make "WOW" potato chips.. and will expand to include Lay's, Ruffles, Tostitos and Doritos snack chips.
The move is expected to create 35 to 40 new jobs.
More good news for Lynchburg-- the city's biggest employer shouldn't get any smaller, even though its parent company is laying off lots of workers.
That's the word from Ericsson.
The Swedish telecommunications giant said it's cutting 11-thousand jobs across the globe.
The job cuts come after last month's announcement that 19-98 earnings would be lower than expected.
Ericsson makes cellular phones and equipment for telephone networks.
Thirty-eight hundred people work at its Lynchburg operation.
A Roanoke man who claimed to be the victim of a pipe- bomb attack has been charged with the crime.
[VO-NAT FROM 98-59 40:22]
The blast in early September dazed Norvell West, the third, and damaged his father's truck.
But federal authorities believe West set the bomb himself. They say he was trying to frame his girlfriend in the wake of an extra- marital affair.
Arrested and arraigned yesterday morning, West faces a four-count federal indictment.
A judge has ordered a psychiatric evaluation to determine if he is competent to stand trial.
[SOFT MUSIC UNDER]
Opponents of the Confederate battle flag win a battle in the General Assembly.
That story is next on News-7 at Noon.
And the pope is on his way to St. Louis after a rousing sendoff in Mexico City.
[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #2]
Virginia's House of Delegates has voted to take the Confederate battle flag OFF of license plates recognizing Sons of Confederate Veterans.
[TAKE CONFEDERATE PLATE PINNACLE PAGE]
N-Double-A-C-P officials took their fight to prevent the flag from appearing on the plates to the General Assembly last week.
Officials with the Sons of Confederate Veterans called the move "unacceptable".
The house DID approve a plate with the heritage group's name emblazoned on it.
The house still has one more vote before the measure goes to the Senate, where an amendment could restore the flag.
[GRAPHIC=Pope John Paul II]
In St. Louis, they're getting ready to greet a very special visitor.
Pope John Paul left Mexico city this morning and is expected to arrive in Missouri this afternoon.
He plans to meet with President Clinton and tonight he'll speak to thousands at a youth rally.
At a rally last night, Mexicans showed their enthusiasm for the Pope by doing the wave.
[OUT Q=nat wave]
The Pope seemed amused by the gesture and responded-- quote-- I am feeling Mexican.
This will be President Clinton's fourth face to face meeting with the Pope.
On Wall Street at Noon, the Dow was DOWN three points.
[SPORTS MUSIC UNDER]
Still ahead in sports, members of the Roanoke Valley Sports Club
get some inspiration from one of this season's most successful college basketball coaches.
We'll tell you what the delegates from Tech and Radford had to say, coming up right after this break.
[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #3]
[GRAPHIC=Roanoke Valley Sports Club]
Virginia Tech women's basketball coach Bonnie Henrickson and Radford men's basketball coach Ron Bradley spoke to the Roanoke Valley Sports Club last night at the Salem Civic Center.
Steve Mason has more.
[IN Q=fist audio]
[SUPER=03-Salem/Last Night; :00]
[SUPER=01-Kevin Ledwith/Hokies Coach of the Day Winner; :17]
[SUPER=01-Bonnie Henrickson/40-10 Record at Virginia Tech; :32]
[SUPER=01-Ron Bradley/Radford Men's Head Coach; :53]
[OUT Q=...News 7 sports"]
((It's not lip service when Bonnie Henrickson says the Roanoke Valley Sports Club is part of her team. Kevin Ledwith's raffle ticket earned him coach of the day honors for a game this season. He will sit behind the bench and join the Lady Hokies in the pregame meeting.
The leader of the nation's 11th ranked team was hardly quiet about what has made her Lady Hokies the only remaining undefeated division 1-A squad.
Coach Ron Bradley was also just what the doctor ordered for the Sports Club meeting, if one was interested in learning about success on and off the hard wood.
Steve Mason, News 7 Sports.))
[TAPE#=SP-30 tc 21:13]
The Lady Hokies aren't the only ones gaining success on the hardwood.
The Roanoke College Lady Maroons are 11 and three so far, after playing through many injuries last season.
And the plague didn't stop after the Maroon's final game.
Six-one Megan Harrigan was diagnosed with a stress fracture after the 97-98 campaign.
The injury meant months of sitting still for a college senior who's used to seeing a lot of action.
[IN Q=I had a ]
[SUPER=01-Megan Harrigan/Roanoke College Senior; :02]
[Super=01-Susan Dunagan/Roanoke College Head Coach; :14]
[OUT Q=for so long.]
Harrigan says having so many months off left her rusty when the season started.
But she's up to full speed now and say's she's looking forward to the last month of her college career.
The Lady Maroons are home again Thursday when they host Guilford.
[TAPE#=SP-35 tc 4:19]
A four- game win streak is history at V-M-I after last night's contest with Davidson.
The Keydets entered the game in first place, one-half game ahead of the Wildcats in the Southern Conference North Division.
Jason Bell's twenty- one points didn't help the Keydets, as they lose to Davidson 76- 66.
In top 25 action, number one Connecticut struggled with the Georgetown Hoyas.
The Huskies were down six early in the second half, before Richard Hamilton gets it to Edmund Saunders for the dunk.
Georgetown would not go away though. The Hoyas get this bucket on the fast break.
But the Huskies finally take control and come out on top 78 to 71.
[TAPE#=SP-29 tc 22:24]
One of the rookie of the year candidates in Winston Cup racing has more to get use to than just a new job.
Mike Stevens explains.
[IN Q=FIRST AUDIO]
[SUPER=03-Spartanburg, SC; :00]
[SUPER=01-Billy Jones/Buckshot Racing Owner; :26]
[SUPER=01-Roy "Buckshot" Jones/Winston Cup Rookie; :54]
[OUT Q=news 7 sports]
Top-seeded Lindsay Davenport easily advanced to the Australian Open semifinals today with a 6-4, 6-love win over fellow American Venus Williams.
[SUPER=03-Melbourne, Australia/ESPN; :00]
And America's Mary Pierce is a big story at the tournament.
The seven- seed dominated twelfth- seeded Anna Kournikova yesterday in straight sets-- winning 6-love and 6-4 in the fourth round.
(------------) Pierce has only lost 14 games the entire tournament.