News briefs for Oct. 1

Published 10:12 pm Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Investors snap up beaten down shares

NEW YORK — Wall Street roared back Tuesday on a bet that Congress would find a way to save its massive financial rescue package, but the credit market — the day-to-day borrowing that keeps the gears of the economy turning — remained rusted over.

One day after the biggest point drop in its history, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 485 points, or more than 41⁄2 percent — the latest in a string of extraordinarily volatile days in the stock market.

It was third biggest point gain in the Dow’s history and the biggest percentage climb in the Dow in six years.

In Washington, congressional leaders scrambled to come up with changes to the $700 billion bailout package, which would buy bad debt off the books of staggering banks, in hopes of passing some version of it later this week.

Obama, McCain use TV attack ads

DES MOINES — White House rivals John McCain and Barack Obama combined televised attack ads with statesmanlike appeals for bipartisanship on Tuesday as they vied for political gain in the shadow of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

Both men spoke privately with President George W. Bush about the collapse of the financial industry, then publicly made clear their differences with him, McCain more gently than his Democratic rival.

The Republican, campaigning in Iowa, pointedly told reporters there were steps the administration could still take “with the stroke of the pen to help alleviate the crisis gripping our economy. I urge them to do so.”

Friend becomes star witness against Stevens

WASHINGTON — A longtime friend of Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens crossed the powerful lawmaker Tuesday and testified that he gave the Republican senator thousands of dollars in gifts.

The fiercely loyal Stevens gave no indication he even saw Bill Allen enter the courtroom, and the two men barely looked at each other as Allen testified about their 26-year friendship and the expensive gifts he gave along the way.

Stevens, 84, is on trial for failing to disclose about $250,000 in gifts and favors on Senate financial documents.

Trooper accused of ramming suspect with patrol car

GREENVILLE, S.C. — A federal jury that must decide whether a South Carolina state trooper deliberately rammed a fleeing suspect with his patrol car watched a video of the incident on Tuesday, and heard the officer bragging about the collision.

Attorneys for Lance Cpl. Steven Garren, however, argued that the trooper tried to avoid hitting Marvin Grant, who was running from police after a traffic stop in June 2007.

The officer’s dashboard camera captured the chase and shows Grant flipping over the patrol car’s hood as he is struck. As the jury watched the footage, the sound of sirens and images of flashing police lights filled the courtroom.