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The Best and the Worst of the Week 

Sandra Smith ,
a chemistry teacher at East St. John High School in LaPlace, has won the American Chemical Society's annual award recognizing outstanding high school teachers. Smith won the 2002 John Drake Award for the greater New Orleans region. Smith has taught chemistry at East St. John for three years.

Aquarium of the Americas
won the Mayor's Sustainable Business Award recently for a progressive conservation, recycling and community education program that helps the facility to consume less energy and other resources. The award, presented by the Mayor's Office of Environmental Affairs under the Morial administration, praised the Aquarium's dedication to curb waste, energy usage and toxic substances.

An inattentive prison guard
at Lafayette Parish Correctional Center apparently aided in the escape of a convicted rapist and accused murderer. Sheriff Mike Neustrom said the unidentified guard was not paying attention as Anthony Machiavelli pried an opening in a fence enclosing the exercise yard. Machiavelli was captured several hours later, carrying contraband that authorities said he had obtained while in jail.

Huntleigh USA Corp. ,
a St. Louis-based company hired to provide security at Louis Armstrong International Airport, let a Baton Rouge man carry two loaded handguns through the initial security checkpoint that included an X-ray of the bag containing the firearms. The guns were discovered in Carlos Stephens' backpack during a random search just before he was to board a flight to Los Angeles.


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