Category Archives: Crime

Be Like Nate

This kid is my new hero.

“I had my hand on a metal baseball bat just in case,” Nate told CNN’s Brooke Baldwin. “‘Cause I was gonna go down fighting if I was gonna go down.”

Wisconsin AG Might Revoke Some Concealed Carry Licenses

Here is an interesting case.

MADISON – Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul could revoke a small number of concealed weapons licenses because of a recent state Supreme Court decision regarding those who have had their criminal records expunged.

The Department of Justice that Kaul oversees has been issuing concealed weapons licenses for years to people who have had their records expunged of felony and misdemeanor convictions.

But the Supreme Court in an unrelated case in December ruled that expunging a record “does not invalidate the conviction.” In light of that, Kaul has determined he cannot issue weapons licenses to those who have expunged records.

He alerted lawmakers to the issue in March and sent a follow-up letter Friday asking them to take up legislation to address it. If they do not, he wrote that he would have to review individual licenses to determine which ones should be revoked.

“Without legislative action, concealed carry licenses must be revoked from individuals with an expunged felony conviction,” he wrote in Friday’s letter.

As the law goes, I think that Kaul is right. By the letter of the law, those licenses would need to be revoked. But then, what does “expunge” really mean? Is the conviction gone or not? Then again, why do we even have a process of expungement? The crime happened… you can’t erase reality, in which case, do we ever want people who commit felonies from getting a concealed carry license? Or should this right be treated like other rights? In Wisconsin, felons can vote after they complete their punishment. Should their right to carry concealed be restored? Tricky questions.

Perhaps we should get rid of expungement and go to Constitutional Carry and let reality prevail.

Woman Killed at Synagogue Stepped Between Killer and Rabbi

I’m going to choose to remember her name instead of the killer’s.

(CNN)When a gunman opened fire in a synagogue in California, killing one and injuring three others, Lori Kaye jumped between the shooter and the rabbi.

Kaye, 60, was shot at the synagogue and died at a nearby hospital. In addition to Kaye, at least three others were wounded in the shooting Saturday at Congregation Chabad in Poway, north of San Diego.
Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein, 57, had been shot in the hand when Kaye stepped between him and the gunman. The rabbi suffered what looked like defensive wounds to both of his index fingers, a doctor at the Palomar Medical Center said.
Lori Kaye was killed in a shooting at Congregation Chabad on the last day of Passover.

Sri Lankan Authorities Try to Root Out Rot

It’s not over

Militants linked to Easter suicide bombings opened fire and set off explosives during a raid by Sri Lankan security forces on a house in the country’s east, leaving behind a grisly discovery Saturday: 15 bodies, including six children.

The gun battle that began Friday night and the carnage that followed come amid widespread fear of more attacks as officials hunt for militants with explosives believed to still be at large after the coordinated bombings of churches and luxury hotels that killed more than 250 people last weekend.

Raids and police curfews have shut down areas of eastern Sri Lanka, and Catholic leaders have canceled Sunday Masses indefinitely. Officials also urged Muslims to stay home for prayers in an extraordinary call by the clergy to curtail worship.

It’s a shame that violent Muslims are denying Catholics their right to worship in peace.

James Byrd Jr. Murderer to be Put to Death

Good. It is a shame that it has taken over twenty years for Byrd’s family to get justice.

An avowed racist, who murdered a black man in 1998 by tying him to a truck and dragging him three miles down a Texas road, will be executed this week.

John William King, 44, who is inked in racist tattoos, orchestrated the attack on James Byrd Jr in Jasper, Texas, is slated to be put to death Wednesday.

[…]

In the early morning hours of June 7, 1998, three white men beat Byrd after offering him a ride.

They then chained the 49-year-old to the back of a truck and dragged his body for nearly three miles along a secluded road in the piney woods outside Jasper.

Byrd was alive for at least two miles before his body was ripped to pieces.

Deadly Easter Explosions Rip Across Sri Lanka

Prayers for our Christian family who are suffering this Easter Day.

The first reports of explosions came at about 08:45 (03:15 GMT) local time – with six blasts reported within a small space of time.

Three churches in Negombo, Batticaloa and Colombo’s Kochchikade district were targeted during Easter services and blasts also rocked the Shangri-La, Kingsbury and Cinnamon Grand hotels in the country’s capital.

As police hunted those responsible, two further explosions were reported.

One blast hit near the zoo in Dehiwala, southern Colombo, and an eighth was reported near the Colombo district of Dematagoda during a police raid, killing three officers.

It remains unclear who was behind the attacks, but 13 arrests were made by police on Sunday.

The government has said they believe suicide bombs were used at some of the sites.

Armed Robber and Victim Kill Each Other

At least the bad guy didn’t get away to hurt anyone else.

Police believe Miller, 64, was outside the residence when the gunman pulled a handgun and attempted to rob the older man, Chicago police said. But Miller, a licensed concealed carry permit holder, pulled his own handgun, said Officer Michelle Tannehill, a police spokeswoman.

Both men were found dead at the scene, along with firearms, Tannehill said.

Miller had been at the property to check the plumbing for his son, who owns the building, according to the son, Mark Miller Jr., 32.

Miller Jr., a trucker, was on the phone talking to his dad, rescheduling movie plans, as his father, who was “walking and talking at the same time,’’ was outside the property, locking up the basement door. Suddenly, Miller Jr. heard gunshots, then his father saying: “Mark, I’ve been shot.’’

Registrar Accused of Taking Bribes

It’s becoming clear that the college admissions process is riddled with corruption.

A former Delaware State University (DSU) official pleaded guilty to taking over $70,000 in bribes in a scheme to help give out-of-state students in-state tuition, federal prosecutors said in a court filing Wednesday.

Crystal Martin, a former registrar at the school, pleaded guilty to one felony count of bribery and could face as many as 10 years behind bars for her part in the scheme that cost the university an estimated $3 million.

“The defendant abused her position at a public university to personally profit and to defraud her employer,’’ U.S. Attorney David Weiss said in a statement. “Individuals who accept bribes while serving in a public capacity risk undermining trust in those institutions.’’

This is partially a consequence of the inflated cost of higher education coupled with the societal conception that a college degree is vital for a successful career. If you make a college degree the only ticket to financial security (or perceived that way) and then jack up the cost of getting it, people are going to do whatever they think is necessary to get it.

School Board Members Charged with Felonies

This looks like a case of outright theft and a cover up in Mercer, but I hope that all members of elected government take note of the charges stemming from the destruction of public records.

Criminal complaints filed Friday in Iron County Circuit Court say the Mercer School Board sent a letter to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction last May to explain questions that came up from an audit by DPI.

DPI clawed back around $175,000 from the district last year for inappropriately spending money from its “Fund 80” account that reserves money for community programs and services, according to a DPI letter dated June 26, posted on the blog Mercer School Facts. The agency found the fund was used without proper documentation to increase wages and benefits for a few district employees, including district administrator Erik Torkelson.

Deanna PierpontDenise ThompsonMichele “Micki” HolmstromColleen “Kelly” Kohegyi, and Noel Brandt all signed a May 1 letter providing details on how money was spent from the fund, according to the complaints.

[…]

“The other three that were school board members, held a meeting, submitting this letter, knowing that it wasn’t the school board — that there were two individuals on there that weren’t part of the school board,” Tingstad said.

Pierpont, Holmstrom and Brandt are charged with felony misconduct in office, and Thompson and Kohegyi are charged with felony falsely exercising a role of public office.

Tingstad said the five are facing felony charges that could bring up to a $10,000 fine or three years in prison.

In addition, former school board president Deanna Pierpont is facing an additional misconduct charge after telling the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel she erased a video of a school board meeting.

Ecuador Acuses Assange of Spying

I’m fairly sure that Assange has managed to tick off just about everyone now.

President Moreno – who came to power in 2017 – said of the decision to end Assange’s seven-year stay in the embassy: “Any attempt to destabilise is a reprehensible act for Ecuador, because we are a sovereign nation and respectful of the politics of each country.”

He added: “We can not allow our house, the house that opened its doors, to become a centre for spying.”

The president also made references to Assange’s apparently poor hygiene following allegations made by Ecuador’s interior minister, Maria Paula Romo.

Wild Day in Wisconsin Walmart

Yikes.

Police say Smith came in with her dog, who was not on a leash. As “Bo” approached customers, Smith allegedly began tearing apart store displays and putting them in her car. Staff members asked her to leave, at which time she walked out of the store and started performing karate moves in the parking lot. Meanwhile, “Bo” helped himself to a box of Jiffy Cornbread Muffin Mix and headed out of the store.

Smith fought with the officers who tried to arrest her and later reportedly tried to kick out a window of a police car.

Meanwhile, Vann had moved to the back of the store and removed his clothes, exposing himself to the other customers. He picked new clothes off the racks, but did not pay for those items, police said. As officers approached, Vann reportedly tried to run an officer over with his scooter. Police stopped the scooter and arrested him.

San Franciscans Threaten Lawsuit over Homeless Shelter

NIMBY

“People want us to address the challenges on our streets and help our unsheltered residents into housing, and I am committed to doing the hard work to make that happen,” the San Francisco mayor, London Breed, said in a statement given to the San Francisco Chronicle.

“But it’s incredibly frustrating and disappointing that as soon as we put forward a solution to build a new shelter, people begin to threaten legal action,” she added.

The money raised will be paid to a local real estate attorney named Andrew Zacks, who advocates on behalf of the rights of property owners and last made the news in 2017, when he defended a San Francisco property owner who tripled the rent on his tenants, from $1,900 to $6,700.

The 2.3 acre vacant lot just beneath the Bay Bridge, on San Francisco’s eastern shore, seemed the perfect spot for a new temporary shelter, which would add 200 beds.

But, situated close to tourist attractions, seaside bike lanes, and – most notably – neighborhoods filled with million-dollar-homes and condos, the site was primed for local pushback.

Depraved Thug Shoots First Hispanic He Saw

Wow. Such depravity.

The suspected gunman in the weekend killing of an off-duty Chicago police officer opened fire on “the first Hispanic man” he saw after a petty dispute with a group of Latinos about an hour earlier, said Superintendent Eddie Johnson, who called the shooting a hate crime.

At a news conference Monday, Johnson said the “nightmare” began about 2:25 a.m. Saturday in the River North neighborhood when Menelik Jackson got into a confrontation in the 600 block of North Clark Street with some Hispanic men on a party bus.

Jackson returned later with a gun, but the men were no longer there, Johnson said.

The superintendent told reporters that Jackson opened fire into a parked car about 3:25 a.m. a block from the initial confrontation, fatally shooting off-duty Chicago police Officer John P. Rivera, 23, and critically wounding the officer’s friend, 23.

Jackson, 24, of South Holland, and co-defendant Jovan Battle, 32, of Chicago, were each charged with one count of murder and three counts of attempted murder.

Police Body Cameras’ Results Don’t Match Expectations

Interesting information. All in all, the greatest benefit seems to be for the officers.

For years, many people hailed body-worn cameras as a potential key to improving police transparency and strengthening often-fractured relationships with the communities they serve. But so far, academic research suggests the technology largely hasn’t lived up to those expectations.

That’s the conclusion of a new report from the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy at George Mason University.

Researchers reviewed 70 empirical studies on body cameras’ effects, ranging from officer and citizen behavior to influences on law enforcement agencies as a whole. While much of the research remains mixed, it counters some promised benefits of body cameras at a time when departments are increasingly adopting the technology.

“There is an incongruence between people’s expectations of cameras, police expectations of cameras and what they think they’re being used for,” says Cynthia Lum, the center’s director and a  co-author of the report.

Boy Charged with 40 Felonies for SWATting Incidents

Great work, LEOs.

March 18, 2019 – Dodge Co., WI – The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office has conducted a thorough investigation of the facts surrounding the hoax phone call received by the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office on March 22, 2018 that resulted in a SWAT deployment placing lives at risk in rural Dodge County.

Sheriff’s Office Detective Andrew Rolfs in collaboration with other law enforcement agencies from around the country were able to identify a suspect, a 17-year -old male juvenile from Youngstown, Ohio, however, we are not able to release the name of the juvenile suspect to the public. Investigations by law enforcement revealed similar incidents occurred around the United States and the phone calls originated from Mahoning County, Ohio.  As a result, the Mahoning County Prosecutor’s Office agreed to handle all charges related to these crimes and 73 counts of delinquency were filed in Mahoning County (40 felonies and 33 misdemeanors).

Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt indicated in 2018 that these incidents are very serious and will not be tolerated.  While it may have taken time to bring charges, the perpetrator is being held accountable.  It is the Sheriff’s hope that the resolution of this case will dissuade others from trying this type of activity.  The individual involved believed he would get away with inciting fear in our community and now faces significant repercussions.

The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the Mahoning County Prosecutors Office along with all the other agencies who put significant time into this case and helped Detective Rolfs close this case.  Additionally, Detective Rolfs deserves a great deal of credit for his hard work in resolving this case.

Kidnapping (Maybe) in Mexico

Yikes.

Mexico City (AFP) – Nineteen passengers who were kidnapped from a bus last week in northern Mexico were migrants, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Tuesday, as investigators worked through the murky details of the case.

The men were crossing the violent state of Tamaulipas, on the US-Mexican border, on Thursday when four vehicles blocked the road and forced their bus to stop, according to authorities.

Armed men then boarded the coach and kidnapped 19 passengers whose names they had on a list.

“I can confirm that they were migrants,” Lopez Obrador said, referring to the abducted men, without specifying their nationalities.

The bus was traveling from the port of Tampico to Reynosa, a border city across from McAllen, Texas.

Although the bus driver told authorities that 19 passengers were kidnapped, investigation sources have indicated the real number of victims could be as high as 25.

The president told a news conference that one line of investigation is the possibility the men could have staged their own kidnapping as a way to drop off the radar and then enter the United States undetected.

Massive College Bribery Scheme Exposed

Wow. 1% and whatnot.

Full House star Lori Loughlin and Oscar nominee Felicity Huffman are two of the 50 parents and coaches charged in a plot to get their children into schools including Georgetown, Stanford, UCLA, University of San Diego, USC, University of Texas, Wake Forest, and Yale.

The scheme was uncovered by the FBI and federal prosecutors in Boston, and involved parents paying bribes of up to $6 million to get their children into these elite schools.

In many instances, the children were unaware that their parents had paid these tax-deductible bribes, according to federal documents.

Smollett is Angry

It is pretty clear what happened here. All that’s left are the details. Smollett has wasted the time and money of law enforcement in one of the most violent cities in America. It’s not a victimless crime.  Smollett can take his faux anger and hurt feelings and shove ’em.

The two brothers who were interrogated by police investigating the alleged attack on Jussie Smollett purchased the rope that was found around the “Empire” actor’s neck, sources told ABC News Saturday.

Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo agreed to cooperate with authorities after detectives confronted them with evidence that they bought the rope — allegedly used in an attack that Smollett described to police as laced with racial and homophobic slurs — at a local hardware store, sources said.

Detectives have now shifted the investigation to determining whether Smollett made up the entire story, sources said.

Yet in a late night statement from his attorneys on Saturday, Smollett hit back at the suggestion that the incident was a hoax, and expressed incredulity that the brothers could have been involved.

“As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with,” began a statement from Smollett attorneys Todd Pugh and Victor Henderson. “He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.”

“One of these purported suspects was Jussie’s personal trainer who he hired to ready him physically for a music video,” the statement continued. “It is impossible to believe that this person could have played a role in the crime against Jussie or would falsely claim Jussie’s complicity.”

The statement went on to say that Smollett would continue to cooperate with authorities.

Babysitting was “Secret Study”

Bwhahaha! You have to give the guy props for ballsiness.

Facing allegations that officers under him were baby-sitting his special-needs son, the Chicago police commander gave a novel explanation: He was conducting a secret study.

Grand Central District Cmdr. Anthony Escamilla acknowledged he had on-duty officers pick up his teenage son, who has autism, but insisted he worked as a volunteer in the community policing office.

Pressed by investigators from the city’s inspector general’s office, Escamilla said he wanted to watch how his son did the work and interacted with his officers, taking mental notes he planned to share with the officers later.

“I kind of wanted to just leave it to them, acting out in their job roles, and then him being a volunteer and seeing how it would go,” Escamilla told an investigator. “It’s not about my son and someone keeping an eye on him. This is about kids with his kind of disability and what we can do as a department to help them.”

British Rapper and Felon to be Deported

Well, well… not exactly the “hiding in the shadows” story we usually get.

Atlanta rapper 21 Savage has been arrested by immigration officials who say he is actually from the UK, reports say.

The rapper, Shayaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, came to the US in July 2005 aged 12 and failed to leave when his visa expired a year later, officials said.

An Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesman said he was being held for removal proceedings.

He has previously described a childhood in Atlanta during interviews.

In an interview with Fader magazine in 2016 he said he had first seen a gun at the age of eight – although the article did not specify where this incident had taken place.

The 26-year-old is also quoted in the interview as saying he was expelled from school in Atlanta aged about 12 or 13 for taking a gun to class.

“His whole public persona is false,” a CNN reporter quoted an ICE spokesman as saying.

Other reports quoted ICE as saying the rapper was being held in the state of Georgia for being unlawfully present in the US and for being a felon. He was convicted of drugs charges in 2014.
[…]

There are 10.6 million undocumented immigrants in the US, according to the Center for Migration Studies. That represents 3.25% of the US population.