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People in the News

February 6, 1988

EL PASO, Texas (AP) _ Two women will compete for the Miss USA title despite their recent arrests, a pageant spokeswoman said.

Sue Bolich, 24, Miss Minnesota, was arrested Jan. 22 at a department store in Edina, Minn., and later charged with gross misdemeanor theft. Police accused her of stealing $370 of clothing, including a swim suit, silk scarves and hair pieces.

Suzanne Pitman, 23, Miss Kentucky, was arrested in Nashville, Tenn., last month and charged with driving while intoxicated.

The Miss USA pageant will allow the women to compete because they are considered innocent until proven guilty, said Stacey Trachtman, vice president of Miss Universe Inc., which sponsors the pageant.

″They want to be here; they want to give their best to the pageant,″ she said Friday. ″Their court dates are in March - after the pageant - so they will go on.″

Miss USA will be crowned March 1. Contest officials are unsure what they would do if either contestant wins, then is convicted, Ms. Trachtman said.

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LONDON (AP) - Princess Diana flew home alone Saturday after dropping Prince Charles off in Bahrain so he could head south for a private African safari.

The royal couple spent three days in Thailand after joining in Australia’s bicentennial celebrations.

Charles and Diana flew from the northern Thai hill resort of Chiang Mai to Bahrain, where he took another aircraft to Eeast Africa for a week-long safari in Tanzania and Kenya.

British sources said the princess had engagements in Britain next week and wanted to be with her sons, Prince William, 5, and Prince Harry, 3.

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SEATTLE (AP) - Entertainer Art Linkletter says Washington state’s insurance commissioner made ″a wild, cruel statement″ when he banned a company’s ads featuring Linkletter from being shown in the state.

Insurance Commissioner Dick Marquardt recently called Linkletter a ″celebrity pitchman″ and banned television ads he does for National Home Life Assurance Co.

The ads say policy premiums will never increase. But the fine print in the policies says the company may change rates by class on any date, Marquardt said.

″That’s not true of the policy I’m selling,″ said Linkletter, 75, who was in Seattle to promote his new book, ″Old Age Is Not for Sissies.″ ″Someone at the home office sent Marquardt the wrong policy.

″And I’m not ignorant of the company itself,″ Linkletter said. ″Marquardt made a wild, cruel statement that I was an ignorant pitchman.

″I’ve been on the company’s board of directors for 15 years and I intend to continue. It’s a Christian company. They pray at every board meeting and contribute millions to charity.″

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NEW YORK (AP) - A federal jury has rejected a $1.2 million legal malpractice lawsuit filed against noted ″palimony″ lawyer Marvin Mitchelson.

The six-member civil jury at federal court in Manhattan took less than two hours to find in Mitchelson’s favor Friday.

A Manhattan woman, Hermine Hanlin, sued the California lawyer for negligence and breach of contract, claiming he mishandled a contract dispute for her.

″It proves in our American system that everyone can get their day in court,″ Mitchelson said after the jury’s verdict.

Ms. Hanlin, former manager of The Manhattans, a Grammy-winning vocal group, claimed Mitchelson did not adequately represent her in a contract wrangle with the quartet. She served as her own lawyer during the five-day trial.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) - ″L.A. Law″ producer-writer Terry Louise Fisher has settled a dispute with 20th Century Fox Television and will no longer be associated with the Emmy-winning NBC series she helped create.

The settlement, revealed Friday, also cuts Ms. Fisher’s ties to ABC’s ″Hooperman″ television show and to Fox studios. Both productions were co- created with ″L.A. Law’s″ executive producer Steven Bochco.

Ms. Fisher had been barred from working on ″L.A. Law″ after a breakdown in negotiations concerning her taking over the duties of Bochco, who is leaving to produce shows for ABC.

Ms. Fisher, a lawyer, had been supervising producer of ″L.A. Law″ and was executive consultant to ″Hooperman.″ After the breakdown in discussions, she filed suit to get her job back. She also sought $50 million.

Jonathan Dolgen, president of the Fox Television Division; Harris Katleman, president of television production; and Ms. Fisher jointly announced the settlement and said the lawsuit would be dropped. Further details were not disclosed.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Actor Dale Midkiff says he didn’t know much about Elvis Presley until he was given the part of the rock star in ″Elvis and Me.″

The ABC television four-hour miniseries, based on Priscilla Beaulieu Presley’s book of the same title, premieres Sunday night. ″That’s more my mom’s era,″ Midkiff, 28, says of Presley’s most popular phase. ″I know I liked to dance to his music, but I didn’t know much about the man until I got this part.″

After he was cast, Midkiff spent more than 100 hours watching footage of Presley, including documentaries and Hollywood movies. He also listened to albums and took a three-day trip to Presley’s Memphis, Tenn., home.

After the trip to Graceland, ″I came out of Memphis singing gospel, so I guessed I was on the right track,″ Midkiff said.

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