January 13, 1994 – the jury in the infamous Menendez Brothers murder trial couldn’t make a decision this day. The jury, which deliberated for days as to whether or not Erik, along with his brother Lyle, murdered their parents and had plotted for some time to carry it out.
The trial, which lasted for months, became a media sensation, as it was broadcast live over Court TV. Defense attorney Leslie Abramson alleged both Erik and his brother Lyle were the victims of repeated sexual abuse, and her flamboyant arguments that the brothers were driven to murder by a lifetime of abuse by bother parents cause the jury for both brothers to be hopelessly deadlocked as the result. For now, Erik Menendez was a free man. But not for long.
There was other news on this January 13th. Outgoing Defense Secretary Les Aspin, who opened the way for Women to serve in Combat aircraft on warships, was also calling for Women to be able to serve in ground combat assignments, with specific exemptions; not to serve on the ground with units with individual or crew served weapons, and they not be exposed to hostile fire or have a high degree of direct physical contact with the personnel of a hostile force. Many felt the move was inevitable, that it was a reasonably balanced solution.
President Clinton and Boris Yeltsin were hashing things out at the Moscow Summit. The way had been cleared for both Presidents to announce a bi-lateral missile agreement in the coming days. Negotiators concluded the details of a deal to de-target both countries nuclear missiles; that is, to aim the missiles that are aimed at each other, out into the open ocean. The idea was first discussed when the leaders met earlier in Vancouver, and was under discussion ever since. It goes along with the agreement to eliminate Ukrainian weapons and now the de-targeting agreement. Both were expected to significantly enhance security and reduce nuclear tensions.
And food was the subject of speculation, with the Center for Science in The Public interest, who the previous year warned about the health perils with Chinese food, now warned about Fettuccine Alfredo. Seems the Italian dish was likened to a “heart attack on a plate” by the center, saying it was the worst dish they had seen in 23 years of testing and evaluating foods. Ironically, dishes they thought would be outrageously high in fat, like Spaghetti and meatballs, proved to be almost downright healthy in comparison.
Sometimes you just can’t win.
And that’s a small slice of what went on in the world, this January 13, 1994 as presented by CBS Radio News‘ The World Tonight.