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6 days ago · by · Comments Off on Daily HI4E.org Trivia Contest Winners For The Week Ending: Sunday, December 2nd, 2018.

Daily HI4E.org Trivia Contest Winners For The Week Ending: Sunday, December 2nd, 2018.

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In an effort to broaden the company’s “social interaction” with our clients and FaceBook fans, Daily Trivia Questions are posted on both of our business pages. Here are the weekly standings for this past week, and the winner of the Sunday night Weekly Drawing for an AmEx gift card!        

Congratulations  – To this past week’s Trivia Contest Winner!!   Our latest contest winner for the weekly FaceBook HealthInsurance4Everyone/Health & Life Solutions, LLC Trivia Contest, drawn randomly by computer late Sunday evening, December 2nd, 2018 was:

         

KIMBERLY GUNN

Watervliet,  MI

Winner Of A $25.00 AmEx Gift Card

 

Each day, fans who have “liked” either of our company FaceBook pages (HealthInsurance4Everyone  or Health & Life Solutions LLC) are able to test their skills with our Daily TRIVIA QUESTION.  The first 20 winners who post the correct answer to the TRIVIA QUESTION, will then get entered into the weekly drawing held late on Sunday evenings for a $25.00 Am Ex Gift Card.


Weekly Gift Card winners will be posted in our blog at this site.  Remember to become a FaceBook fan and “Like and Follow” either of our company pages to enter and post your answers. 

 

Here are the daily contestants from last week’s Trivia Contest that were entered into the Sunday drawing:

 

Trivia Last Weeks Winner

 

The trivia drawing entries 11/26/18 thru 12/02/18 are:

 

 

 

11/26/18

 

 

Melissa Mae

 

Kathleen Marks

 

Vickie Gipson

 

Marcy Coull

 

Tabitha Sinks

 

Beth Mason

 

Harley Magoon

 

Sara Heller

 

Marilyn Wall

 

Amy Chavis

 

Stacy Nelson

 

Samantha Brwn

 

Cheryl Reagin Burns

 

Kendra Lynne Ramsey

 

Cherilyn White

 

Christy Martinez

 

Audessa Vaught

 

Sheila Carvell

 

Pamela White Brearley

 

Be Schwerin

 

 

11/27/18

 

 

Karen Brunet Moore

 

Jodi Stevens

 

Marilyn Wall

 

Eric Sanders

 

Jill Nauyokas

 

Kathleen Hickman

 

Be Schwerin

 

Fanny Wat

 

Melissa Mae

 

Alicia Smith

 

Nitasha Shank

 

Brianna Ketchum

 

Alexis Maureen

 

Patricia Oehlert Vazquez

 

Luis Y Katie Santos

 

Geri Rus

 

Megan Rhyne

 

Sheila Carvell

 

Lisa David Carr

 

Angel Shearl

 

Becky Holland

 

Amie-Lee George

 

Anna Nichols

 

Tonya Velazquez

 

Cheryl Reagin Burns

 

Carol Moore

 

Carole Jacobs

 

Becky Holland

 

 

 

11/28/18

 

 

Misty Shallcross

 

Vickie Gipson

 

Nikki Hunsker

 

Kayla Clemons

 

Jocelyn Carol

 

Sunney Michelle Johnson

 

Jennifer Vega

 

Jill Nauyokas

 

Derek Jennings

 

Jade Good

 

Tracey Smith

 

Debbie Bloxom

 

Beth Kumjian

 

Jeremy Mclaughlin

 

Megan Rhyne

 

Amber Chandler

 

Dave Miller

 

Dawn Raasch

 

Jenifer Garza

 

Debbie Gremlin

 

Kathleen Hickman

 

Eleazar Riuz

 

 

 

11/29/18

 

 

Kathi Taylor

 

Marilyn Wall

 

Gina Taylor

 

Christy Hawkes

 

Jennifer Ramlet

 

Naomi Whitlatch

 

Jodi Stevens

 

Ambreen Rouf

 

Karyn Koehler

 

Nicole Blaha

 

Donna Porter

 

Josephine Casey

 

Alyssa DiFazio

 

Mike Adamski

 

Shannon Rush

 

Jessica Steiner

 

Priscilla Shimp

 

Becky Hartman

 

Shelley Ann Peoples

 

Heather Lynn Rood

 

Lori Sexton Leal

 

Karen Brunet Moore

 

 

 

11/30/18

 

 

Eleazar Ruiz

 

Christy Martinez

 

Kathleen Hickman

 

Alyssa DiFazio

 

Debbie Gremlin

 

Angel Shearl

 

Tina Auth

 

Karen Brunet Moore

 

Carla Williams

 

Brittany Light

 

April Ashcraft

 

Sandy Nevels

 

Amanda Nichole Young

 

Sheila Carvell

 

Becky Nichols-Volner

 

Gina Taylor

 

Rosanne Clark

 

Ashley Agner

 

Debbie Smith

 

Be Schwerin

 

Jodi Stevens

 

Jenn Smith Jackson

 

 

 

12/1/18

 

 

April Ashcraft

 

Jennifer Mason

 

Jessica Steiner

 

Maria Bouchard

 

Mikey Mellor

 

Kendra Lynne Ramsey

 

Becky Hartman

 

Wendy Messer-Brinnon

 

Ambreen Rouf

 

Becky Holland

 

Rosanne Clark

 

Be Schwerin

 

Christine M Miller-Borowczyk

 

Nicole Blaha

 

Beth Cleveland

 

Stevie Rosson

 

Debbie Bloxom

 

Sherry Lilly

 

Tom Cavalli

 

Nacole Patrick

 

Ashley Stamey Phillips

 

Anniemae Maria Aikens

 

Jennifer Lang

 

 

 

 

12/02/18

 

 

Cassandra Berholtz

 

Jenifer Garza

 

Jill Nauyokas

 

Black Wendi

 

Deborah Farris

 

Vickie Gipson

 

Kimberly Kay

 

Christy Martinez

 

Nitasha Shank

 

Brooke Scott

 

Brittany Light

 

Eleazar Ruiz

 

Martha Balderson

 

Lisa Bloomberg Wahl

 

Jennifer Ramlet

 

Kendra Lynne Ramsey

 

Samantha Brwn

 

Bea Patrick

 

Poonam Gosain

 

Lisa Bourlier

 

Kayla Clemons

 

Kimberly Gunn

 

Carl Buddy Mizell

 

Cheryl Reagin Burns

 

Michelle Webb

 

 

HI4E NightTime Skyline Image

 

 


Be sure to watch both of our FaceBook pages for your chance to win and enter again next week, with questions posted daily on HealthInsurance4Everyone or at Health & Life Solutions, LLC!!

Remember that if you try your hand at answering the Trivia Question several days each week, your odds of winning the Sunday weekly drawing are much better. 

Also note that a number of the posted answers each day are from contestants who have forgotten to “Like” one of our pages, so their names WILL NOT be entered at the end week drawing for the gift card, giving our fans a better chance!

You may also find that if you “Like” BOTH of the business pages, you will receive faster notifications of the other players as they post their answers to compete with you!  

—————————————————————-

At Health Insurance 4 Everyone, we not only want to improve our customer service but also interact with our customers on a social media level that wasn’t available before. Interested in connecting with us?  Look us up on….   HI4E Large Logo

 

Twitter: Healthinsurane4  (Follow Us On Twitter To Receive Faster Notifications When Daily Trivia Questions Posted, & To Be Immediately Notified When Weekly AmEX Gift Card Winners Are Announced!!)

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2 weeks ago · by · Comments Off on Comic Legend Stan Lee Passes Away

Comic Legend Stan Lee Passes Away

 

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Famed comic book writer Stan Lee, creator or co-creator of some of Marvel’s most well-known and beloved characters, died at the age of 95 on November 12th in Los Angeles.  Lee died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center after being rushed there in a medical emergency earlier in the day.  Earlier this year, Lee revealed to the public that he had been battling pneumonia and in February was rushed to the hospital for worsening conditions at around the same time.  Lee was predeceased by his wife 0f 69 years Joan, who passed away in July 2017 at the age of 95.  He leaves behind two daughters, Joan Ceclia and Jan Lee.

Lee has been credited with helping to propel Marvel Comics to the world’s top publisher of comics.  Lee became an assistant in 1939 at the new Timely Comics division of pulp magazine and comic-book publisher Martin Goodman’s company. By the 1960’s, Timely Comics evolved into Marvel Comics and Lee rose through the ranks of a family-run business to become Marvel Comics’ primary creative leader for two decades.  He is credited with leading its expansion from a small division of a publishing house to a multimedia corporation that dominated the comics industry.

Lee became a figurehead and public face for Marvel Comics, making appearances at comic book conventions around America, lecturing at colleges and participating in panel discussions. He served as editor-in-chief and later publisher for Marvel and created or co-created the widely popular characters Black Panther, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, the Incredible Hulk, the X-Men, Iron Man, Thor, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, and Ant-Man.  Following his retirement from Marvel in the 1990s, he remained a public figurehead for the company, and frequently made cameo appearances in movies based on Marvel characters, on which he received an honorary “executive producer” credit.

In April 2018, The Hollywood Reporter published a report claiming Lee was a victim of elder abuse.  The report alleged that Keya Morgan, business manager of Lee and a memorabilia collector, had been isolating Lee from his trusted friends and associates following his wife’s death.  The report alleges she was attempting to get access to Lee’s wealth, an estimated $50 million.  In August 2018, Morgan was issued a restraining order to stay away from Lee, his daughter, or his associates for three years.

He continued independent creative ventures until his death.  Roy Thomas, who succeeded Lee as editor-in-chief at Marvel, had visited Lee two days prior to his death to discuss the upcoming book The Stan Lee Story.  Thomas said “I think he was ready to go. But he was still talking about doing more cameos. As long as he had the energy for it and didn’t have to travel, Stan was always up to do some more cameos. He got a kick out of those more than anything else.”

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1 month ago · by · Comments Off on Three Indiana Siblings Killed At Bus Stop

Three Indiana Siblings Killed At Bus Stop

 

 

 

 

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A 24-year-old woman is facing 3 counts of reckless homicide and one misdemeanor count of disregarding a stop sign and causing injury after the pickup truck she was driving struck and killed three siblings who were crossing the road to get to their school bus in rural Rochester, Indiana.  Six-year-old twin brothers Xzavier Ingle and Mason Ingle, and their 9-year-old sister, Alivia Stahl, died at the scene Tuesday morning.  The children’s classmate and neighbor, 11-year-old Maverik Lowe, was also hit.  He was airlifted to the hospital and remains hospitalized in critical condition.  The children were crossing State Route 25 to get to their school bus when they were hit at about 7:15 a.m. in front of the Meiser mobile home park where they lived.

The Tippecanoe Valley School Corp. bus had stopped on the two lane road, lowered its stop-arm and had the emergency lighting activated just before the northbound Toyota Tacoma pickup truck slammed into the children as they crossed the southbound lane.  Alyssa L. Shepherd, of Rochester, was arrested at her workplace, was charged and released on a $15,000 bond.  Shepard told an Indiana State Police detective that she saw flashing emergency lights on the rural highway but didn’t realize it was a school bus picking up the children until it was too late.  By the time she realized a bus was stopped, the children were already in front of her vehicle.  Their father rushed out of their home and identified them after police arrived to investigate, officials said.  State Police Detective Michelle Jumper testified at a probable cause hearing into charges against Alyssa Shepherd, the bus driver told investigators he saw the oncoming truck’s headlights. The bus driver stated that because the truck was far back and had plenty of time to slow, the driver waved to the children, telling them to cross.  The bus driver honked the horn when it was clear the truck wasn’t stopping.  Jumper testified that Shepherd told her she typically did not drive on the route where the crash occurred and that she had three children in the back seat of her truck when she allegedly struck and killed the three siblings.

A witness driving behind Shepherd said she and Shepherd were traveling 45 mph. The witness said the truck’s headlights illuminated the children as they were crossing the road and she said she started to freak out as she realized ‘I’m slowing down, but that truck in front of me is not slowing.”  Shepherd remained at the scene after the crash, cooperating with investigators. She was given a blood test as is standard in all fatal crashes, but police said they do not think alcohol or drugs were a factor.  Shepard who works as children’s director at Faith Outreach, a Foursquare Gospel Church in Rochester then went to work to pray.

Parents who live in the mobile home park had previously asked the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation to change the bus route so the children didn’t have to cross State Route 25 to catch the bus. Parents complained that it was dangerous for children to cross a highway where vehicles routinely travel at 50 to 60 mph.  Elgin Ingle, the uncle of the children who died said “There’s plenty of room for the school bus to pull into the mobile home park and pick up these kids.  This school has been warned that this is an issue.  My brother is torn apart, he didn’t lose one kid, he lost all his kids,” Ingle said. “How do you tell your little brother it’ll get better? You can’t. My brother, the most loving man in the world and the best father I’ve ever known, now is a father to no one.”  Blaine Conley, superintendent of the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation, released a statement that stating that the bus stop will be relocated from State Road 25 into the mobile home park where the children lived.

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1 month ago · by · Comments Off on Florida Man Arrested In Bomb Mailings

Florida Man Arrested In Bomb Mailings

 

 

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Federal authorities have made an arrest in the pipe bomb mailings four days after the investigation began.  Cesar Sayoc, a 56 year old DJ and former stripper, is accused of sending 13 pipe bombs through the mail to a range of Democrats and critics of the president.  Authorities say Sayoc left a trail of forensic and digital evidence behind that authorities used to track him down and arrest him.  Prosecutors charged Sayoc with five federal crimes and he faces more than 50 years in prison if convicted on all charges.

 

Sayoc, who has a long criminal history, was arrested in Florida after investigators linking DNA found on two bomb packages to a sample that was previously collected by the state of Florida.  They also matched his fingerprints to one from a separate pipe bomb mailing he sent.  Authorities say  he had previously filed for bankruptcy and appeared to be living in his van, showering on the beach or at a local fitness center.

 

Authorities launched an investigation after packages containing homemade pipe bombs were sent to prominent Democrats.  The packages were sent to Barack and Michelle Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, George Soros, former Attorney General Eric Holder, Congress member Maxine Waters and former CIA Director John Brennan.  Investigators say the devices may have originated in southern Florida and were sent through the U.S. Postal Service. The 10 packages being examined had a return address for Democratic Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and on some of the packages, her last name was misspelled.

 

CNN had to evacuate its New York office in Manhattan after it received what police described as a “live explosive device.”  The package was delivered by courier to CNN’s offices at the Time Warner Center in New York and was addressed to the former CIA director John Brennan.  The package also contained an envelope containing white powder.   Police are also investigating a suspicious package found early this morning that was mailed to actor Robert De Niro’s restaurant in New York. De Niro has frequently publicly criticized the president.  Two additional packages were intercepted Thursday, headed for former Vice President Joe Biden in Delaware.  Authorities discovered the two packages at post offices in Delaware addressed to the former vice president.  At least one of them had been misaddressed and returned to sender.  No one was hurt in any of the cases.

 

Authorities say the devices sent to Soros, Brennan and the Democratic officials appeared to be pipe bombs that were rudimentary but functional.  All the explosive devices had similar construction, had timer devices and at least one contained projectiles, including shards of glass.  Sources say the bombs were unstable and could have been set off by handling.  The FBI said all the packages were in manila envelopes with bubble-wrap interior and had six American flag Forever stamps on the envelopes.

 

Investigators are analyzing the crude devices to reveal whether they were intended to detonate or simply cause fear before the Midterm Election.  Law enforcement officials said that the devices, containing timers and batteries, were not rigged to explode upon opening. They are uncertain whether the devices were just poorly designed or never intended to cause physical harm.

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1 month ago · by · Comments Off on Saudi Officials Admit Jamal Khashoggi Is Dead

Saudi Officials Admit Jamal Khashoggi Is Dead

 

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After weeks of denials and shifting narratives on the whereabouts of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the government of Saudi Arabia has finally admitted that Khashoggi is dead.  Khashoggi entered the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2 and was never seen again. Saudi officials now say Khashoggi was killed in a “fistfight” inside the consulate and that 18 Saudis had been arrested in connection with the death.

Turkish officials still maintain that Khashoggi was tortured, murdered and dismembered by a squad of 15 Saudi hit men shortly after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.  They claim that audio and video recordings show Saudi officials used a bone saw to dismember Khashoggi’s body.  They maintain that it was a premeditated hit carried out by a squad of hit men and that one of the men was a forensic specialist specifically brought in to conceal the crime.

CNN aired CCTV footage obtained from the Turkish authorities, showing the Saudi agent Mustafa Mohammed Madani, a member of the 15-man team, leaving the consulate by the back door.  Madani was dressed in Khashoggi’s clothes, aside for mismatched shoes.  He had also put on a fake beard that resembled Khashoggi’s facial hair, his glasses and his Apple Watch.  Madani, who was of similar age, height, and build to Khashoggi, left the consulate from its back door and was later seen at Istanbul’s Blue Mosque, where he went to a public bathroom and changed back to his own clothes and discarded Khashoggi’s clothes.

The body double footage bolstered Turkish claims that the Saudis always intended either to kill Khashoggi or move him back to Saudi Arabia.  Anonymous Turkish officials believe that Madani was brought to Istanbul to act as a body double and that “You don’t need a body double for a rendition or an interrogation. Our assessment has not changed since October 6.  This was a premeditated murder, and the body was moved out of the consulate.”

An anonymous Saudi official claims Khashoggi had been threatened with kidnapping by Maher Mutreb and when he resisted, he was restrained with a chokehold, which killed him.  Madani then left the consulate through the back door dressed in Khashoggi’s clothes.  Khashoggi’s body was rolled up in a carpet and given to a “local cooperator” for disposal.  The official claims it was Mutreb who overstepped by threatening a kidnapping and accidental killing.  The team then filed a false report indicating they let Khashoggi leave after he warned of Turkish police interference.  The official provided Saudi documents indicating the operation was part of a wider initiative to bring expatriate dissidents home and the original plan was to keep Khashoggi in an Istanbul safe house for a period where he would be persuaded to return home or eventually released.  Many have been skeptical of their claims and still believe the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the hit.

Saudi officials again changed their story after Saudi Arabia’s attorney general said that evidence shared by Turkish officials suggests that the killing was premeditated.  They now admit that the killing was premeditated and carried out by a rogue team, still maintaining that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had no prior knowledge of the killing.  Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has directly accused Saudi Arabia of the premeditated murder, calling it a political killing orchestrated by Saudi officials.  Erdogan urged Saudi Arabia to disclose who ordered the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, as well as the identity of a “local cooperator” involved in the murder plot.  He also called for the Saudi suspects to be tried in Turkey.  Erdogan said Turkey has more information about the case than it has shared so far, suggesting he could release more details if the Saudis refuse to reveal vital information.

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2 months ago · by · Comments Off on Officer Found Guilty In Laquan McDonald Shooting

Officer Found Guilty In Laquan McDonald Shooting

 

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Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke, 40, was convicted of second degree murder in the 2014 shooting death of 17 year old Laquan McDonald.  Van Dyke is the first Chicago officer to be charged with murder for an on-duty shooting in about 50 years. Second-degree murder usually carries a sentence of less than 20 years, especially for someone with no criminal history but probation is also an option. Van Dyke was also convicted of 16 counts of aggravated battery — one for each bullet.

The second-degree verdict reflected the jury’s finding that Van Dyke believed his life was in danger but that the belief was unreasonable. The jury also had the option of first degree-murder, which required finding that the shooting was unnecessary and unreasonable.  Legal experts say Van Dyke will likely be sentenced to no more than 6 years but that because he is an officer, it will likely be in isolation.

The verdict was the latest chapter in a story that shook Chicago residents soon after a judge ordered the release of the video in November 2015.  Protests erupted and continued, demanding accountability for the shooting.  The city’s police superintendent and the county’s top prosecutor both lost their jobs — one fired by the mayor and the other ousted by voters. It also led to a Justice Department investigation that found a “pervasive cover-up culture” and prompted plans for far-reaching police reforms.

The city had been preparing for possible demonstrations in a case that already sparked protests with many downtown businesses and City Hall closing early in anticipation of protests.  Groups of demonstrators took to the streets for several hours after the verdict, chanting, “The people united will never be defeated,” and “Sixteen shots and a cover up.”

Prosecutors in Van Dyke’s trial called on multiple officers who were there that night in an effort to penetrate the “blue wall of silence” long associated with the city’s police force and other law enforcement agencies across the country.  Three officers, including Van Dyke’s partner, have been charged with conspiring to cover up and lie about what happened to protect Van Dyke. They have all pleaded not guilty.

According to testimony, on the night of the shooting, officers were waiting for someone with a stun gun to use on the teenager when Van Dyke arrived.  Former Police Officer Joseph Walsh, Van Dyke’s partner the night of the shooting, testified that Van Dyke said to him “Oh my God, we’re going to have to shoot that guy,” before arriving at the scene.  Van Dyke was on scene for less than 30 seconds before opening fire and the first shot he fired was 6 seconds after he exited his patrol car.

The first responding officer said that he did not see the need to use force and none of the at least eight other officers on the scene fired their weapons.  Video of the shooting shows that Officer Van Dyke was advancing on McDonald, while McDonald was walking away from him when the first shot was fired.  McDonald was shot 16 times in 14–15 seconds and 9 of those shots hit his back as he lay on the ground.  Toxicology reports later revealed that McDonald had PCP in his blood and urine.

Assistant special prosecutor Jody Gleason told the jury that Van Dyke contemplated shooting McDonald before he even encountered the young man, referring to testimony about what Van Dyke told his partner before arriving at the scene.  “It wasn’t the knife in Laquan’s hand that made the defendant kill him that night. It was his indifference to the value of Laquan’s life.”   Van Dyke was taken into custody moments after the verdict was read.  He is scheduled for a sentencing hearing on October 31.

 

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2 months ago · by · 0 comments

Four White Supremacists Charged With Rioting At Unite The Right Rally

 

 

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Federal prosecutors in Virginia have charged four white supremacists from California with conspiracy and inciting rioting at the deadly Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville in August of 2017.   Last year’s protest left activist Heather Heyer dead after white supremacist James Alex Fields Jr. plowed his car into a crowd of peaceful counter-protesters.

Benjamin Daley, Thomas Gillen, Michael Miselis and Cole White are all members of a militant white supremacist group from California known as the Rise Above Movement, which espouses anti-Semitic views and meets regularly in public parks to train in boxing and other fighting techniques, according to an affidavit written by an FBI agent.  According to The Anti-Defamation League, the Rise Above Movement members believe they are fighting against a “modern world” corrupted by the “destructive cultural influences” of liberals, Jews, Muslims and non-white immigrants. Members refer to themselves as the mixed martial arts club of the “alt-right” fringe movement, a loose mix of neo-Nazis, white nationalists and other far-right extremists.

U.S. Attorney Thomas Cullen said each defendant faces a maximum of 10 years in prison if convicted on the two counts they each face: traveling to incite riots and conspiracy to riot.  The affidavit alleges the four men were “among the most violent individuals present in Charlottesville” in August of last year during a torch-lit march on the University of Virginia campus and a larger rally in downtown the following day. It says photos and video footage shows they attacked counter-protesters, “which in some cases resulted in serious injuries.”  The men have also taken part in “acts of violence” at political rallies in Huntington Beach and Berkeley, California, and other places, the affidavit alleges.

Cullen said that the men also engaged in acts of violence in their home state of California at a series of political rallies, dubbing them “serial rioters.”  At a news briefing, Cullen said “This is a group that essentially subscribes to an anti-Semitic, racist ideology, and then organizes, trains, and deploys to various political rallies, not only to espouse this particular ideology but also to engage in acts of violence against folks who are taking a contrary point of view.”

A Los Angeles judge denied bail for Michael Miselis, finding that he posed a risk to the community.  Miselis’ attorney argued for his release, detailing how his client got his master’s at UCLA and worked as an engineer at Northrop Grumman for five years before being dismissed after his connection to Charlottesville became public.  Prosecutor David Ryan argued against bail for Miselis, saying agents found smoke bombs, flares, and thousands of rounds of ammunition, mostly for assault weapons, in his home, where he had a wall hanging that said “88,” a common abbreviation for “Heil Hitler.”  Ryan also said said Miselis, Daley and other members of their group also traveled to Germany and the Ukraine earlier this year and met with members of well-known violent white supremacy groups.

Cullen said investigators sifted through “an incredible volume” of video and still photographs to review the movements of the four men and determine whether they could claim they were only defending themselves after being attacked by others at the rally. He said prosecutors believe there was “no provocation” for them to engage in violence that day.  The four men, he said, made their way to the rally with their hands taped, “ready to do street battle.”  Then they engaged in punching, kicking, head-butting and pushing, assaulting an African-American man, two women and a minister who was wearing a clerical collar, Cullen said.  Cullen also said a significant aspect of the case was that the four men had “extensive and robust” social media profiles and used social media to further their purposes.

We’d love to know what you think of this story.  Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!

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2 months ago · by · Comments Off on Dallas Officer Amber Guyger Fired

Dallas Officer Amber Guyger Fired

 

 

 

 

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Dallas police Officer Amber Guyger, who fatally shot 26-year-old Botham Jean in his Cedars apartment, was fired just days after Police Chief U. Renee Hall said doing so would compromise the criminal investigation.  A news release stated that Hall fired Guyger after an internal investigation found the officer had engaged in “adverse conduct” when she was charged with manslaughter three days after the shooting.

Guyger shot Jean, her upstairs neighbor, the night of Sept. 6. Jean, an accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, lived on the fourth floor in apartment 1478 of the South Side Flats. Guyger, an officer for four years, was his immediate downstairs neighbor.  After entering his apartment that she mistook for her own.  She entered the dark apartment after a long shift and believed Jean, who was unarmed, was a burglar.

After she shot him, Guyger called 911 in tears, “I thought it was my apartment,” she said repeatedly and apologized to Jean, “I’m so sorry.”  Police arrived within four minutes of her call, and paramedics rushed Jean to Baylor University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.  Guyger was charged with manslaughter three days after the shooting and has been on administrative leave since the shooting.  She’s currently free on a $300,000 bond while she awaits trial.

There was widespread calls for action and protests demanding that Guyger be terminated.  Chief Hall said that she couldn’t fire Guyger before an internal investigation was completed because of federal, state and local laws but she didn’t specify to which laws she was referring.   Hall released a statement saying she didn’t want to risk interfering with a criminal investigation by making a decision about Guyger’s employment.

The Dallas Police Department turned over the investigation to the Texas Rangers shortly after the shooting. The Dallas County District Attorney’s office is also conducting its own investigation.  Those investigations aren’t complete, but Hall said police were notified that a “critical portion” of the criminal investigation — the part that could have been compromised by an internal investigation — had been concluded over the weekend.

Guyger’s firing was supported by Mayor Mike Rawlings, who called it “the right decision in the interest of justice”.  A statement from the mayor read “I have heard the calls for this action from many, including the Jean family, and I agree that this is the right decision in the interest of justice for Botham Jean and the citizens of Dallas.  The swift termination of any officer who engages in misconduct that leads to the loss of innocent life is essential if the Dallas Police Department is to gain and maintain the public trust.”

Guyger’s attorney Robert Rogers said in a written statement that Hall “bowed to pressure from anti-police groups and took action before all of the facts had been gathered and due process was afforded.”  Rogers said his client is “completely devastated by what happened.” The shooting, he said, was “a tragic mistake and words can never express our sorrow for the pain being suffered by those who knew and loved Botham Jean.”

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2 months ago · by · Comments Off on Bill Cosby Sentenced

Bill Cosby Sentenced

 

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Comedian Bill Cosby was sentenced to three to 10 years in a state prison for drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand at his home 14 years ago.  Cosby, 81, will be eligible for parole in three years and could be released from prison and allowed to serve out the rest of his 10-year sentence under supervision in the community.

Judge Steven O’Neill said the evidence that Cosby planned the drugging and sexual assault of his victim was “overwhelming,” based on Cosby’s own words in a civil deposition.  In the deposition, provided the year after the alleged assault, as Constand pursued a civil suit against him, Cosby admitted that he procured Quaaludes for women he wanted to have sex.  Cosby also admitted that he asked a modeling agent to connect him with young women who were new in town and “financially not doing well.  Judge Steven O’Neill ruled that the 2005 testimony could be presented to the jury in his criminal trial.

Months after his depositions, Cosby settled the case with Constand and the accusations quickly faded. In October 2014, a Philadelphia magazine reporter at a Hannibal Buress show uploaded a clip of the comedian calling Bill Cosby a rapist and commenting on his Teflon image.  The clip went viral and soon after many accusers stepped forward.  More than 60 women have accused Cosby of sexual assault or harassment, stretching back to the 1960’s but Constand’s case was the only one that led to criminal charges against the comedian.  During interviews, all of the women gave similar accounts of blacking out after having a drink supplied by Cosby and later waking up during or after a sexual assault.  Most said they stayed quiet because they never thought anyone would believe them since Cosby was wealthy and at the height of his career.

On April 26, he was found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault for the 2004 drugging and sexual assault of Andrea Constand. Each charge carries a maximum of 10 years in prison but Judge Steven O’Neill said that the charges had been merged into one because they all stem from the same event.  Constand, a 31-year-old Temple women’s basketball official he was mentoring at the time of the assault.  She testified in detail at the trial about losing control of her limbs after taking pills given to her by Cosby, who served on Temple’s board of trustees and was the public face of the university. The pills, Constand said, left her unable to stop him from violating her at his suburban Philadelphia estate.

At the sentencing hearing, O’Neill aid, “No one is above the law, and no one should be treated differently or disproportionally.”  “This was a serious crime,” O’Neill added. “Mr. Cosby, this has all circled back to you. The day has come, the time has come.”  Cosby was also ordered to pay a fine of $25,000 plus the costs of prosecution — a total of $43,611 — as part of the sentence.  Cosby’s attorneys have repeatedly said they plan to file an appeal in the criminal case.

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2 months ago · by · Comments Off on Mavericks and Owner Mark Cuban Sanctioned Over Handling of Sexual Harassment

Mavericks and Owner Mark Cuban Sanctioned Over Handling of Sexual Harassment

 

 

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The Dallas Mavericks and the basketball team’s owner Mark Cuban were sanctioned by the NBA after an independent investigation substantiated a number of allegations against men within the organization. The findings include improper conduct in the workplace and domestic violence. Mark Cuban publicly apologized and said he will pay $10 million to women’s organizations as part of an agreement with the NBA.  Cuban agreed to the $10 million payment as well as staffing and leadership changes.

The sanction came after a months-long investigation into accusations against several employees, including the former team president and chief executive, Terdema Ussery.  The investigation arose from an article in Sports Illustrated in February that exposed a workplace filled with problems for female employees.  The article said Ussery had engaged in “various acts of inappropriate conduct toward women,” and that Earl Sneed, a former writer for the team’s official website, had faced numerous allegations of domestic violence.

Although Cuban did not face accusations of misconduct, the employees who were mistreated suggested the harassment had gone on for years and that he must have known about it and had done little to prevent it.  The investigation included information gathered from more than 200 interviews with current and former Mavericks employees. Ussery was found to have engaged in improper workplace conduct toward 15 female employees, including touching them and making inappropriate comments.  Sneed had committed two acts of domestic violence, including one against a co-worker. Cuban was made aware of the episode but did not fire him.  Ussery had already resigned from the team in 2015 to take a position with Under Amour.  Shortly after the Sports Illustrated article, Sneed announced he would be leaving the team and then deleted his Twitter account.

The investigation also found that Chris Hyde, a longtime senior account executive, had made inappropriate comments toward women, viewed pornography on his workplace computer and made unsolicited sexual advances toward co-workers. Even after Cuban warned Hyde about looking at pornography at the office, Hyde’s inappropriate behavior continued for years.

In a statement, the league announced that the money from Cuban would be donated to a variety of organizations chosen by an advisory council of Mavericks executives, including Cuban, as well as several N.B.A. officials. The inquiry, conducted by independent investigators overseen by the league, also recommended that the Mavericks hire more women, including in leadership positions, and create a formal process for employees to report misconduct.  The N.B.A. ordered the Mavericks to file quarterly reports on its progress in those areas, and to begin workplace training for all staff members, including Cuban, 60, who acquired a majority stake of the Mavericks in 2000.

“The findings of the independent investigation are disturbing and heartbreaking,” Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement, “and no employee in the N.B.A., or any workplace for that matter, should be subject to the type of working environment described in the report.”

 

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