Minneapolis Officer Charged In Shooting of Australian Woman
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minneapolis police officer who shot and killed an unarmed Australian woman in July minutes after she called 911 to report a possible sexual assault behind her home was charged Tuesday with murder and manslaughter.
Officer Mohamed Noor turned himself in Tuesday after a warrant was issued for his arrest. He shot Justine Ruszczyk Damond, a 40-year-old life coach, on July 15 minutes after she called 911. Damond’s death drew international attention, cost the police chief her job and forced major revisions to the department’s policy on body cameras. <br><div style="width:100%;height:0px;position:relative;padding-bottom:56.000%;"><iframe src="https://streamable.com/s/lpvmn/vputsw" frameborder="0" width="100%" height="100%" allowfullscreen style="width:100%;height:100%;position:absolute;left:0px;top:0px;overflow:hidden;"></iframe></div>
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman planned a Tuesday afternoon news conference to discuss the charges. The criminal complaint specified third-degree murder “for perpetrating an eminently dangerous act” and the manslaughter charge alleges Noor acted with “culpable negligence creating unreasonable risk.”
Noor has not spoken publicly about the case and declined to answer questions from investigators. His attorney, Thomas Plunkett, confirmed Noor turned himself in, but had no other immediate comment.
Damond’s father, John Ruszcyzk, and her fiance, Don Damond, issued a joint statement on behalf of both families, saying they applauded the decision to charge Noor “as one step toward justice for this iniquitous act.”
“No charges can bring our Justine back. However, justice demands accountability for those responsible for recklessly killing the fellow citizens they are sworn to protect, and today’s actions reflect that,” the statement said.
Noor’s partner the night of the shooting, Matthew Harrity, told investigators that he was startled by a loud noise right before Damond approached the driver’s side window of their police SUV. Harrity, who was driving, said Noor then fired his weapon from the passenger seat. Damond died of a gunshot wound to the abdomen.
The criminal complaint described Harrity hearing the noise and catching a glimpse of a person’s head and shoulders outside his window. It said Harrity was startled, perceived his life was in danger, pulled his gun and held it to his ribcage pointing downward.
Baltimore Cops Kept Toy Guns to Plant Just in Case They Shot an Unarmed Person
In April 2016, a 13-year-old boy was shot by officers of the Baltimore Police Department. The boy ran when faced with the police, so they gave chase. During the chase, the police spotted the boy holding a gun, and when he turned, they shot the teenager. The youngster wasn’t critically injured, and it seemed like an open-and-shut case of a justifiable use of force.
Now people are wondering.
The Baltimore Police Department is currently in court over one of the biggest scandals in the history of American law enforcement. The corruption case is replete with intrigue as police reveal secrets that sound like something out of an urban-fiction novel or a lost season of The Wire. It has revealed how one of America’s largest cities just happened to be filled with crooked cops, but no one seems to be talking about it outside of Baltimore.
According to the Baltimore Sun, it started when a 19-year-old woman from New Jersey overdosed in 2011 and authorities began tracing the origin of the drugs. It led them to a Baltimore drug crew and the discovery that a Baltimore police officer was involved. By the time they finished investigating, eight members of the elite Gun Trace Task Force had been charged with crimes ranging from racketeering to robbery.
You want robbery? How about the story of the corrupt squad stopping a drug dealer during a traffic stop and robbing him of $6,500, then going to the man’s home without a warrant and taking another $100,000 out of a safe? Sgt. Wayne Jenkins would ask suspected drug dealers, “If you could put together a crew of guys and rob the biggest drug dealer in town, who would it be?”
If you’re interested in police targeting regular citizens, maybe you should read about how the Maurice Ward had a technique of driving fast at groups of people, slamming on the brakes and chasing whoever ran. Perhaps you hear how Jenkins believed that all young men with backpacks were dope boys. Or people who drove Honda Accords with tinted windows.
And then there’s the revelation that the supervisor of the unit instructed officers to carry a toy gun just in case they found themselves “in a jam” and needed to plant one. When one of the officers, Marcus Tayor, was arrested, officials couldn’t figure out why he had a toy gun in his glove compartment.
Marijuana prohibition is entering its 78th year. Colorado's marijuana law went into effect at the beginning of last year in the wake of changing attitudes. Compared to 1969, when only 12% supported legalizing pot, today a majority of Americans support legalizing recreational use of the drug.
It is legal to purchase marijuana in four states — Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington — as well as in the District of Columbia. Prior to the legalization, all of these states had already reduced the penalties for possession and use of small amounts of the drug or introduced policies permitting medical marijuana use. To identify the states most likely to legalize marijuana next, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 11 states where by law residents in possession of small amounts of the drug are not punishable by jail time, and medical marijuana use is permitted.
A large share of U.S. states, including all 11 on this list, have decriminalized marijuana at some point. The widely-referenced, but confusing term actually means a different thing depending on where it is being used. Not to be confused with legalization, states that have decriminalized marijuana have in some way reduced the penalties for for those caught with the substance. In most cases, this means the state will no longer prosecute or jail those caught with small amounts of the drug for personal use. In some cases, getting caught with a few grams of marijuana is as serious as a traffic infraction.
Other states that have decriminalized, however, still have relatively harsh penalties for possession. In Nevada, for example, the state no longer can assign jail time for those caught with a small amount of the drug, but violators can still be arrested, fined heavily, and charged with a misdemeanor.
Various moral and practical arguments have helped to catalyze the growing trend of legalization and decriminalization of marijuana. The potential tax revenue, job creation, and reduction of the burden of offenders on state prison systems, for example, have likely been a motivating factor behind the bills to regulate and legalize the drug in many of the states on our list. In an interview with 24/7 Wall St., Allen St. Pierre, executive director at the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), argued that legalizing marijuana "would generate revenue where we now hemorrhage out billions and billions of dollars."
Baltimore Cops Carried Toy Guns to Plant on People They Shot, Trial Reveals
One officer involved in the city's massive corruption scandal said officers kept the replicas "in case we accidentally hit somebody or got into a shootout, so we could plant them."
Last week, the beginning of an explosive corruption trial involving eight members of Baltimore's elite Gun Trace Task Force revealed that a handful of Baltimore cops allegedly kept fake guns in their patrol cars to plant on innocent people—a failsafe they could use if they happened to shoot an unarmed suspect, the Baltimore Sun reports.
Detective Maurice Ward, who's already pleaded guilty to corruption charges, testified that he and his partners were told to carry the replicas and BB guns "in case we accidentally hit somebody or got into a shootout, so we could plant them." The directive allegedly came from the team's sergeant, Wayne Jenkins, the Washington Post reports. Though Ward didn't say whether or not the tactic was ever used, Detective Marcus Taylor—another cop swept up in the scandal—was carrying a fake gun almost identical to his service weapon when he was arrested last year, according to the Sun.
The revelation is just one of many egregious abuses that have come out of the sprawling trial that the Sun has called "Baltimore’s biggest police corruption scandal in memory." Prosecutors say the squad, which was tasked with getting illegal guns off the streets, abused its power by robbing suspects and innocent people, raiding homes without warrants, and selling confiscated drugs, among other crimes.
But the BB gun testimony is particularly disturbing in light of 12-year-old Tamir Rice's death in 2014, the 13-year-old in Baltimore who was shot twice by cops in 2016 after he allegedly sprinted from them with a replica gun in his hand, and the 86 people fatally shot by police in 2015 and 2016 who were spotted carrying toy guns.
Six of the eight task force members charged in the corruption scandal have pleaded guilty to racketeering charges, but Taylor and Detective Daniel Hersl have pleaded not guilty. They're currently on trial while several of their former partners testify against them.
Oscars Crash to Lowest Ratings EVER; ‘Kobe Bryant Win Proves Hollywood Full of Hypocrites’
Gary Oldman’s third ex-wife is unimpressed with Oscar voters for honoring the British actor and NBA icon Kobe Bryant with Oscar wins, after both faced criminal misconduct allegations in the past.
Oldman, 59, took home the Best Actor trophy on Sunday for his portrayal of British leader Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour, while Bryant, 39, walked away with the Best Animated Short Oscar for Dear Basketball — a film no one saw.
Oldman was accused of domestic assault in 2001 by his then-wife, photographer Donya Fiorentino, while Bryant was charged with sexually assaulting a hotel clerk in 2003.
Fiorentino sarcastically told TMZ.com, “Congratulations, Gary and congratulations to the Academy for awarding not one but two abusers with Oscars. I thought we had evolved. What happened to the #MeToo movement?”
The criticism of the Academy voters reached an all-time high on Monday morning, as Americans who did not watch the telecast awoke to the news.
“It’s amazing to me that Hollywood could be so blind that on the same day when they won’t talk to Ryan Seacrest and when they won’t allow Casey Affleck to even present an award at the Oscars, they somehow give Kobe Bryant an Oscar,” said Clay Travis, host of Fox Sports Radio’s “Outkick the Coverage”.
Travis was referring to 16 of 20 nominees who gave E! host Seacrest the cold shoulder on the red carpet, after he was accused of sexual misconduct by a former hairstylist.
“I don’t understand,” Travis continued, “If you’re all about #MeToo and you’re all about believing women when they say that men who are powerful have mistreated them, how in the world does Kobe Bryant win an Oscar at this Oscars of all times to win one?”
ABC Network was among the biggest losers on Sunday night. The 90th Academy Awards dropped to an all-time low of under 30 million viewers for the first time ever.
Sunday night’s telecast tumbled to 26.5 million viewers — down 19% from the previous year’s rating, which was still the second lowest watched Oscars ever. The distinction of lowest rated Oscars went to the 2008 telecast. The Best Picture that year was “No Country for Old Men”.
Viewers once again rejected Hollywood’s hypocritical political rants as they tuned out for the second year in a row. Coincidentally, Jimmy Kimmel hosted two consecutive years of the least watched Oscars in history.
Rapper Tory Lanez lost Nicki Minaj feature due to text message mix-up
Text messages are prone to misinterpretation. Especially when you’re texting someone who is overly sensitive and tends to take everything the wrong way.
That’s what happened to 25-year-old Canadian rapper Tory Lanez, right, who lost a Nicki Minaj feature over a text mix-up.
American rapper Nicki Minaj demanded the “Say It” rapper remove her guest verse from his song “Shooters” after she misinterpreted a text message he sent her about the verse.
Tory had initially secured a feature from the hip-hop superstar for his new album, Memories Don’t Die, but fans were left confused after noticing Nicki was no longer among the credited artists on the CD.
Tory explained to HotNewHipop.com why the “No Frauds” MC pulled her appearance on the project after he sent her a badly-worded text message, which she may have taken as offensive.
“I was telling her something about the verse. I wasn’t saying it was bad or anything, her verse was incredible, and I’m also like, a super Nicki fan. But I was telling her something, and it may have came off — ’cause I was texting her, and it may have came off in a different way, she probably read it in a different way than I said it.”
He continued: “I think it maybe kinda came off a little bit arrogant, or I kinda said something I shouldn’t have said about her verse, and she was like, ‘Well, it’s not that serious. Take my verse off the thing.’ We was like, ‘Aight.'”
Tory admits the communication mix-up was all on him, but he didn’t go out of his way to try and explain himself to Nicki.
Still, he hopes the two artists will be able to work together again.
“I love Nicki Minaj when it comes down to her music and the whole thing, but I’m not a reacher (reaching out again),” he said. “Once a ni–a says it’s quiet (done), it’s quiet. Maybe in the future when the time is right, we’ll do something that’s right, that we both feel comfortable with.”
Nicki has been laying low while working on her epic comeback album that will make everything forget about a certain one-hit Bronx rapper.
If you live in the greater Atlanta area, Tory will be at the DTLR store inside the South DeKalb Mall today (March 7) signing copies of his CD, starting at 5 P.M.
Florida Mother’s Regretful Decision To Send Lyft Driver For Son At School Ends In Horror
Working parents have their hands full. Between their responsibilities at work, taking care of household chores like cooking and cleaning, and running around chauffeuring kids from school to after-school activities, parents are so busy that things are bound to slip through the cracks sometimes.
So when ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft came out and offered lower fares than traditional taxi services, it looked like a perfect way for parents to transport their kids to and from school, sports, and playdates. But one Florida mom learned that convenience sometimes comes at a heavy price…
One Davie, Florida mom works hard to support her family by holding down a full-time job. But her job made it difficult to also be a full-time mom to her 16-year-old son, and be there for him to drive him to and from school each day.
So when the Davie woman, whose name has not been revealed to the public, heard about a ride-sharing company, Lyft, she thought it would be a perfect way to make sure her son always had a ride home from school on the days she couldn’t get out of work in time to pick him up…
At first, the woman loved that the the app was easy for her son to use on his phone, had cheap fares, and could automatically be charged to her account. Aside from being easy to use, it also took away the burden of having to be her son’s personal chauffeur.
What the Davie woman, and other parents across the country, didn’t realize, was that they were unintentionally putting their children at risk by sending them off all alone in a car driven by a complete stranger with absolutely no way to protect themselves…
Ride-sharing companies like Lyft and Uber assure passengers that their drivers are subjected to background checks and are carefully assessed before being hired to drive for their company. Yet there are countless news reports of drivers from these companies endangering or assaulting their passengers.
Deontay Wilder Takes Down Luis Ortiz in the 10th | SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING
NEW YORK — Deontay Wilder survived a pummeling from Luis Ortiz, then knocked out the challenger in the 10th round Saturday night to retain his WBC heavyweight title.
Befitting the undefeated champion from Alabama, it was a wild affair for the final few rounds after a dull series of pawing and gesturing by Wilder gave Ortiz a solid lead. Even after Wilder knocked down Ortiz in the fifth round, the bout remained in the Cuban’s favor.
Then, in the seventh, Wilder appeared out on his feet though he never hit the canvas. He stumbled to his corner when that round ended, and the end seemed near for Wilder.
Instead, he closed the ninth with two hard rights, and then a series of vicious combinations in the 10th started Ortiz’s downfall.
It was over with 55 seconds to go in the 10th after Ortiz went down for the second time in the round from a right uppercut and referee David Fields stopped it.
“I just had to get my range back and my fundamentals back,” Wilder said. “And I was able to do that. I showed I was a true champion tonight.”
Wilder, 32, is 40-0 with 39 knockouts. This easily was his toughest bout. Somehow, he was ahead on all three judges’ scorecards.
The Associated Press had it 86-83 for Ortiz heading into the 10th.
Ortiz, 38, is 28-1. He couldn’t have come much closer to becoming the first Cuban heavyweight belt holder after finally getting his match with Wilder. Their initially scheduled bout was in November, but Ortiz twice tested positive for a banned substance, a diuretic.
Wilder basically threw away the early rounds with a lack of aggression and much clowning. The left-handed Ortiz was all business.
Security patted down rapper Ralo and blocked him from boarding a flight at an Atlanta airport earlier this week.
The rapper posted footage of the incident which shows him being searched by the security officials. He later claimed that they were “stalking” him and wouldn’t allow him on the flight. “They allowed everybody to fly but #RALO,” wrote the rapper on his Instagram story. Not much else is known about his situation at this time.
The rapper discussed some other issues he’s had with authorities after his arrest last month. He was pulled over by police for driving with a suspended license and he defended himself on the social media platform. “Young, Black, Smart, Rich, an Muslim,” wrote Ralo in his post. “#1 most hated type of guy in this country. On my birthday I was pulled over due to cancellation of registration.” He went on to discuss the incident more specifically. “GA law states that on day of your birthday you have to renew your registration,” he continued. “2)In their computer system my license was suspended. 3) I didn’t have proof of insurance. My bond was paid b4 I walked in the jail. Kristie made sure of that. I went to court this morning, for some strange reason my license is active, an why da f**k would I pay ah half ah million dollars for a car an not have insurance on it.”