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Two uniformed NYPD officers were shot dead Saturday afternoon as they sat in their marked police car on a Brooklyn street corner — in what investigators believe was a crazed gunman’s assassination-style mission to avenge Eric Garner and Michael Brown.
“We’re all in this together.”
Mayor De Blasio, to grieving cops
“No we’re not.”
One of the grieving cops
“It’s an execution,” one law-enforcement source said of the 3 p.m. shooting of police officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos.
The tragic heroes were working overtime as part of an anti-terrorism drill in Bedford-Stuyvesant when they were shot point-blank in the head by the lone gunman, identified by sources as Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, who had addresses in Georgia and Brooklyn.
Moments after killing the two officers, he too was dead, having turned the gun on himself on a nearby subway platform as cops closed in.
“I’m Putting Wings on Pigs Today,” a person believed to be the gunman wrote on Instagram in a message posted just three hours before the officers were shot.
“They Take 1 Of Ours…Let’s Take 2 of Theirs,” the post continued, signing off with, “This May Be My Final Post.”
The Instagram page included an image of a silver automatic handgun with a wooden handle. Another image showed the same camouflage pants and distinctive blue sneakers worn by the gunman as his body was carried from the scene on a stretcher.
He used the hashtag #ShootThePolice, along with two other hashtags referencing Garner and Brown.
Brinsley walked up to the cops’ patrol car at the corner of Myrtle and Tompkins avenues, approaching from the sidewalk. Read the rest of this entry »
Police Officer Wenjian Liu and Police Officer Rafael Ramos were shot and killed from ambush while sitting in their patrol car at the intersection of Myrtle Avenue and Thompkins Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant.
Both officers were participating in an anti-terrorism drill when a subject walked up their patrol car and opened fire with a handgun, striking them both in the head and upper body multiple times. Other officers immediately pursued the the subject into a nearby subway station where the man committed suicide.
The subject was a gang member from Baltimore, Maryland, who had traveled to New York City specifically to ambush police officers. The man had published his intentions on social media prior to the shooting.
Officer Liu had served with the New York City Police Department for four years. Read the rest of this entry »
Two uniformed NYPD officers were shot dead — execution style — as they sat in their marked police car on a Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, street corner.
“I saw an officer being put on a stretcher…There was lots of chaos and confusion.”
According to preliminary reports, both officers were working overtime as part of an anti-terrorism drill when they were shot point-blank by a single gunman who approached their car at the corner of Myrtle and Tompkins avenues.
“It’s an execution,” one law enforcement source told The Post of the 3 p.m. shooting.
The gunman just started “pumping bullets” into the patrol car, another source said.
The suspected gunman fled to a nearby subway station at Myrtle and Willoughby avenues, where he was fatally shot. Preliminary reports were unclear on whether he was shot by police or his own hand.
“They engaged the guy and he did himself,” one investigator said.
“I heard shooting, — four or five shots,” ear-witness Derrick McKie, 49, told The Post. Read the rest of this entry »
SEOUL, South Korea — A defector who once worked as a computer expert for Pyongyang says North Korea is running a vast network of hackers committing cyber warfare against the perceived enemies of the Stalinist state.
“Raising cyber agents is fairly cheap. The world has the wrong view of the North Korean state. With that incorrect world view, North Korea was able to increase its ability to launch cyberattacks.”
Jang Se-yul, who defected from North Korea seven years ago, told CNN that he thinks there are 1,800 cyber warriors in the agency in place around the world, but he says even the agents themselves don’t know how many operatives work for the secretive group, labeled Bureau 121.
— jimgeraghty (@jimgeraghty) December 18, 2014
The South Korean government thinks Bureau 121 is the agency at the heart of the cyberattacks that North Korea conducts against foreign countries, a government official who requested to be anonymous told CNN on Thursday.
— National Review (@NRO) December 18, 2014
“This silent war, the cyber war, has already begun without a single bullet fired.”
An unknown number of agents and operatives work with Bureau 121, the official said, adding that South Korean intelligence thinks the group is responsible for the “Dark Seoul” hacks on South Korean banks and media companies in March and June 2013. Read the rest of this entry »
Washington State Legislature to Introduce Metal Napkin Dispenser Control Act to Establish Guidelines for Napkin Dispenser Background Checks, Regulate Production and Ownership of Defensive Full-Metal Napkin Dispensers
BURLINGTON, Wash. — Cops are on the hunt for a serial armed robber and police say his last target was a clerk inside the Lafeen’s Donut shop on November 30.
But thanks to a brave store clerk police now have a clear view of the suspect’s face.
Investigators think the same man is responsible for robberies stretching from Burlington to Bellingham.
“It just makes me mad,” said clerk Sara Mora, “It makes me angry.”
Mora was working in the back of the store when she heard a customer walk in.
But when she saw a man guy holding a gun, she did exactly as she was told.
“Right when he flashes his gun I’m like, whoa,” she said. “This is the end of me, my life ends right here.”
The thief made Sara empty the register. But when the suspect turned to cut the phone lines, Sara made her move and armed herself with a metal napkin dispenser.
During the struggle Sara pulled down the suspect’s hood. Investigators said the image of the man captured on video is their best chance to identify the suspect.
“It gives us a very description of who we’re looking for,” said Officer Jed Cates of the Burlington Police Department. “He’s obviously shown that he’s willing to do it, this has occurred 4 times in Bellingham.”
Investigators believe the suspect is responsible for other armed robberies in Bellingham; several were also captured on surveillance video. Read the rest of this entry »
Originally posted on CBS Houston:
EDDY, Texas (AP) — Authorities are searching for a gunman after a TV meteorologist was shot during an altercation in the Central Texas station’s parking lot.
The Texas Department of Public Safety says the attack happened Wednesday morning outside KCEN-TV in Eddy, about 75 miles north of Austin. The suspect fled on foot.
Investigators are trying to determine what sparked the gunfire.
A message left with management at KCEN, which is the NBC affiliate in the Waco area, wasn’t immediately returned Wednesday. KCEN, on its website, identified the victim as morning meteorologist Patrick Crawford.
Trooper D.L. Wilson says the victim was in his vehicle when the suspect approached, the two argued and the station employee was shot.
Crawford was transported a hospital in Temple. A message left with the hospital wasn’t immediately returned.
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Economist and columnist John Lott seems to have said it best in the title of his book, “More Guns, Less Crime.” Using state, county and city crime data, Mr. Lott argued that more guns and looser gun laws raise the cost of committing crime because a would-be criminal is more likely to encounter someone with the means to protect himself or herself, and thus the criminal is less likely to risk being injured or killed in the effort.
Americans seem to be increasingly embracing this idea. According to a November Gallup poll, 63 percent of Americans believe having a gun in the house makes the home safer, a marked and steady increase from the 35 percent who said so in a 2000 Gallup poll. Just 30 percent feel it makes the home more dangerous, down from 51 percent in 2000.
Despite media portrayals of high-profile school shootings and occasional tragic gun accidents as evidence of an epidemic of gun violence, the truth is that gun violence has been declining dramatically for a long time, both in the home and outside of it. National Safety Council data reveal that accidental gun deaths in the home have dropped 60 percent over the past 20 years, and now make up just 0.6 percent of such unintentional fatalities. Read the rest of this entry »
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A federal autopsy in the Ferguson police shooting reached similar conclusions to those performed by local officials and a private examiner hired by 18-year-old Michael Brown’s family, documents show.
The Armed Forces Medical Examiner System’s autopsy on Brown, conducted at the request of the Department of Justice, was among grand jury documents that St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch released Monday with little explanation. Other documents include transcripts of eight federal interviews of possible witnesses to Brown’s shooting in early August; police radio traffic; and an alleged audio recording of the shots fired by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.
Many of the documents contained information that was similar or identical to the materials that McCulloch released on Nov. 24 after a grand jury decided not to indict Wilson in Brown’s death. A transcript of testimony from an Air Force pathologist who performed the Justice Department autopsy was included in the November documents, but the autopsy report itself was not released until Monday.
The transcripts of the witness interviews that were released Monday were already included in previously released testimony heard by the grand jury.
The Justice Department autopsy found that Brown died from multiple gunshot wounds and had severe head and chest injuries, though it noted that the chest injury might have been an exit wound from a shot that entered Brown’s arm. The autopsy also found a minor gunshot wound to Brown’s right hand was evidence of close range discharge of a firearm. Read the rest of this entry »
A former Capitol Hill staffer who worked for Democrats has pleaded guilty to sexual abuse in a plea agreement that apparently won’t require him to spend any time in jail.
Donny Ray Williams, Jr., 37, reportedly pleaded guilty to four charges: third degree sexual abuse, two misdemeanor charges of sexual abuse, and one misdemeanor count of threatening to do bodily harm in connection with two incidents that allegedly occurred in the summer of 2010.
Prosecutors claim that Williams allegedly invited a female congressional co-worker back to his apartment, spiked her drink with Ambien, and raped her while she was asleep. A month later, he allegedly got another woman drunk and “had sexual contact with her” without her consent, The Washington Post reported. A third woman made similar claims against Williams, while a fourth alleged that Williams had threatened her.
The case was scheduled to go to a jury trial on January 5, 2015. The court trial was originally scheduled for March, 2013.
As the Inquisitor previously detailed, Williams was originally indicted in August, 2012 on 10 charges related to sexual abuse allegations.
The remaining charges are subject to dismissal as part of the plea deal entered into last week.
At the time of the 2012 indictment, Williams deemed the allegations “absolutely and completely false,” and insisted that he was not guilty. “I’ve never done anything to hurt anybody. I tried to live my life to help people,” he added.
Instead of jail, prosecutors plan to ask for a suspended prison sentence with five years of supervised probation. Williams will also have to register as a sex offender for 10 years. Read the rest of this entry »
John Hayward reports: Hey, remember how a watchdog group called Cause of Action filed a Freedom of Information Act request for documents pertaining to the investigation of taxpayer information handed over to the White House by the IRS, and the request went nowhere, so they sued, and a judge told the Treasury Department they had to cough up the documents, and then the Treasury Inspector General was all like, “Oh, wow, we’ve got 2,500 pages of documents on this deal, so we need a little more time to finish going through them before we hand them over?”
If it wasn’t so bad – if there wasn’t a ‘smidgen of corruption’ – why try so hard to keep these records silent?”
Never mind about seeing those documents, peons. The Administration has decided not to hand them over after all, citing a statute that basically says the privacy of the people whose privacy the White House violated would be violated by revealing details of the White House violation to the public. It all sounds pretty fishy to Cause of Action, as quoted in the Washington Examiner:
Dan Epstein, executive director of Cause of Action, said Treasury was using “sophisticated” lawyering to weasel out of providing the documents. And he noted that their letter said that Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is now looking into “potential liability” that his tax aides broke laws in sharing taxpayer information with the White House. Read the rest of this entry »
Under the Obama administration there are accusations of retaliation by inspectors general against whistleblowers who help to expose corruption and abuse.
The Obama’s administration’s 72 inspectors general, who are appointed to investigate wrongdoing in their respective departments such as the Department of Justice, the Internal Revenue Service, the Veteran’s Administration and other federal agencies, appear to require an inspector general to investigate them.
“Imagine police officers punishing or threatening their confidential informants, or snitches, when they bring them information and you can see how ludicrous it has become within the federal government…”
– Former police detective and corporate security director Michael Snopes
They allegedly do more ignoring or covering up misconduct, malfeasance and even out-and-out criminal activity, than they do weeding out corruption and crime, according to a report released on Friday by non-governmental, public-interest group that probes and exposes government and political corruption.
Inspectors General Needed to Investigate Obama Administration’s Corrupt Inspectors General
“The [supposedly] ‘independent’ watchdogs that are supposed to root out waste, fraud and corruption inside U.S. government agencies often help cover it up,” noted officials from Judicial Watch. The group of investigators and attorneys — who use the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the civil court system to probe and “prosecute” federal, state and local government agencies and individuals — points to a four-part newspaper exposé that accuses these high-paid inspectors general of sometimes becoming “the lapdogs of the agencies they’re charged with overseeing.”
Under the Obama administration there are accusations of retaliation by inspectors general against whistleblowers who help to expose corruption and abuse.
The newspaper’s investigative reporter, Mark Flatten, penetrated the veil of deceit — so common in President Barack Obama’s so-called transparent administration — to reveal the present reality of inspectors general tasked with keeping an eye on the government. The 72 inspectors general, with superiors appointed by the president, is a decades-old practice that became law with both Democrats and Republicans supporting the legislation in both houses of Congress.
Each government department is required to have an independent section that functions the way a police department’s internal affairs bureau functions: with total access to all information, documents and materials and a total absence of any conflict of interest or any apprehension of retaliation by superiors including the President of the United States. Any findings by an inspector general with the appropriate House of Representatives’ committee or Senate committee charged with oversight. Read the rest of this entry »
The cause of the blaze was not yet known, but the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was on scene as well as an accelerant-sniffing dog to help arson investigators determine whether it was intentionally set.
The fire early today in downtown Los Angeles engulfed an area the size of a city block, closed freeways and roads, burst windows of nearby buildings and melted freeway signs.
“When they came out of the quarters they could see it was fully engulfed. It was a building under construction in the framing phase. Almost 1 million square feet and a city block.”
“It looked like a bomb had just exploded,” said L.A. fire Capt. Rick Godinez.
Flames could be seen for miles from the fire that broke out in the DaVinci apartment complex at about 1:20 a.m. The blaze closed roads and freeways, including the 110 North, which won’t open until at least 10 a.m., officials said.
The blaze damaged nearby buildings, including one that houses city agencies.
“There are windows blown out all the way up the side of our building,” said Building and Safety spokesman Luke Zamperini.
More than 250 firefighters battled the blaze at the apartment tower under construction in the 900 block of Fremont Avenue, Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman David Ortiz said. The building had 1.3 million square feet of floor space, and officials said two-thirds of it was consumed by flames.
“First is shut down and Temple is shut down. Downtown is basically shut down.”
The bulk of the fire was put out in 90 minutes, but firefighters were continuing to deal with hot spots well into the morning, according to LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas.
There were no injuries reported. The cause of the blaze was not yet known, but the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was on scene as well as an accelerant-sniffing dog to help arson investigators determine whether it was intentionally set, said Fire Department spokeswoman Katherine Main. Read the rest of this entry »
A former Apple executive who sold some of the iPhone maker’s secrets to suppliers will serve a year in prison and repay $4.5 million for his crimes.
The U.S. Attorney’s office announced Devine’s penalty Friday, but declined to explain the reason for the lengthy delay in his sentencing.
Devine faced up to 20 years in prison. Read the rest of this entry »