National Embarrassment: Seattle Public Utilities Privacy Violating Ordinance Laughed Out of Court.
Under the 2015 ordinance, garbage collectors were required to determine by “visual inspection” whether more than 10 percent of a trash can’s contents were made up of recyclable items or food waste. Violators are subject to fines.
The lawsuit argued that the ordinance essentially allowed warrantless searches, an invasion of privacy, and a ‘policy of massive and persistent snooping.’
Valerie Richardson reports: A state judge threw out a portion of a Seattle ordinance requiring garbage collectors to snoop through residents’ trash in search of food waste, calling the provision unconstitutional.
“Seattle can’t place its composting goals over the privacy rights of its residents.”
King County Superior Court Judge Beth M. Andrus issued an injunction against the garbage inspections but not Seattle’s residential food-waste ban, which forbids throwing away food scraps and compostable paper.
“A clear message has been sent to Seattle public officials: Recycling and other environmental initiatives can’t be pursued in a way that treats people’s freedoms as disposable.”
“This ruling does not prohibit the city from banning food waste and compostable paper in SPU-provided garbage cans,” the 14-page decision said, referring to the Seattle Public Utilities. “It merely renders invalid the provisions of the ordinance and rule that authorize a warrantless search of residents’ garbage cans when there is no applicable exception to the warrant requirement, such as the existence of prohibited items in plain view.”
Under the 2015 ordinance, garbage collectors were required to determine by “visual inspection” whether more than 10 percent of a trash can’s contents were made up of recyclable items or food waste. Violators are subject to having their garbage cans tagged and fines of $1 per can for curbside collections or $50 per collection for multi-family units. Read the rest of this entry »
In Flagrante Delicto: Middle School Teacher Christine Taylor Invited a Teen to Her Home for Pizza, But His Mom Walked In On…Posted: January 4, 2016
44-year-old teacher Christine Taylor of Naperville, Ill. has been accused of sexually abusing a 16-year-old teen after inviting the teen and his mother to her home for pizza on New Year’s Day.
“Around 9 p.m., police said Taylor convinced the victim’s mother to allow him to walk Taylor’s dog with her. Instead of walking the dog, Taylor allegedly took the boy to her bedroom and sexually abused him.”
Taylor, a language arts teacher at Jefferson Middle School, allegedly convinced the mother to let her son go with her to walk the dog. Little did the mother know that “walk the dog” meant “take him to the bedroom.”
“The mother apparently caught her in the act. Another resident in Taylor’s house called the police and Taylor was arrested.”
According to ABC7, “around 9 p.m., police said Taylor convinced the victim’s mother to allow him to walk Taylor’s dog with her. Instead of walking the dog, Taylor allegedly took the boy to her bedroom and sexually abused him.”
The mother apparently caught her in the act….(read more)
Bill Cosby Arraigned for Alleged Aggravated Indecent Assault
Michael Rothmans reports: Bill Cosby arrived in court today after he was charged with alleged aggravated indecent assault earlier this morning by the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office in Pennsylvania.
After court, Cosby headed to the Cheltenham Police Department, where his mugshot was taken and he was processed.
The comedian, 78, entered the courtroom in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, around 2:30 p.m., walking arm-in-arm with his legal team. He will next appear in court on Jan. 14 and his bail was set at $1 million for the second-degree felony counts against him.
“We examined all the evidence and we made this determination because it was the right thing to do.”
— First Assistant District Attorney Kevin Steele
Cosby’s passport was also turned over to the court and he did not enter a plea.
The famed comedian has always maintained his innocence since being accused more than 10 years ago by former Temple University employee Andrea Constand of sexual assault. With that case about to reach the statute of limitations next month, First Assistant District Attorney Kevin Steele said his office had decided to proceed with the second-degree felony charge. Read the rest of this entry »
The family of 5-yr-old who was killed by gang member react to the 128-year sentence handed down to killer. Story at 4 pic.twitter.com/ybA80LuOGa
— Robert Holguin (@ABC7Robert) July 21, 2015
Leonard Hall – convicted of fatally shooting a 5-year-old boy on Halloween 2010 – sentenced to 128 years to life.
— Robert Holguin (@ABC7Robert) July 21, 2015
Katie DeLong reports: A 50-year-old Waterford man is accused of beating up his own uncle over a $3 pot during a card game called “(Expletive) On Your Neighbor.”
Back on January 10th, officials responded to the 29000 block of Elm Island Drive in Waterford for a report of an assault.
There, officials spoke with a 69-year-old man who advised he was playing cards when his nephew, Scott Labisch attacked him — kicking him in the ribs multiple times. An officer observed small cuts above the man’s right eye, and the man said his nose bled as a result of the attack.
The man was taken to the hospital for treatment. There, he was diagnosed with non-displaced fractures to the three ribs, according to the criminal complaint.
Officials spoke with another man who indicated people were at his home playing cards when Labisch “beat up” his uncle over approximately $3 that was in the pot during the game. Another person confirmed the assault. Read the rest of this entry »
New York City Murders Are On The Rise
Rocco Parascandola, Kerry Burke, Larry McShane report: A dramatic drop in stop-and-frisk encounters has emboldened criminals and made cops more reluctant to take proactive police action, even as murders and shootings are on the rise in the city.
“Everyone is afraid to make stops. No one wants to get jammed up. They’re telling us the stops have to be quality stops. But if you make a stop, and you think it’s a good one, and the guy has nothing on him, is that a good stop?”
— Brooklyn police supervisor
The frightening message — echoed by police supervisors and union leaders — comes as stop-and-frisk encounters are on pace to plunge by 42% this year, with 20,000 fewer street stops.
“What you’re seeing now are the perps carrying their guns because they’re not afraid to carry them. We’ve created an atmosphere where we’ve handcuffed the police. We are sitting back, taking a less proactive approach.”
— Ed Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association
There were 11,652 stops across the city through June 3 — projecting to roughly 28,000 for the year, records obtained by the Daily News show. As the number of stops fell, the number of murders spiked 19.5% during the first five months of the year, the number of people shot is up 9.2% and the number of shooting incidents jumped 9%.
“Based on this year’s drop…absent any other factor, you have to ask the question: Are the cops now reluctant to engage?”
“What you’re seeing now are the perps carrying their guns because they’re not afraid to carry them,” said Ed Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association. “We’ve created an atmosphere where we’ve handcuffed the police. We are sitting back, taking a less proactive approach.”
Mullins said the city’s criminal element has been operating without fear while cops have been somewhat neutered in the last two years — and he wasn’t the only one to raise the issue.
“Based on this year’s drop . . . absent any other factor, you have to ask the question: Are the cops now reluctant to engage?” wondered one high-ranking police source.
Critics of the NYPD told The News there was no correlation between the two sets of numbers — while stop-and-frisk supporters said the lower frisk numbers led to the higher crime figures.
City cops, citing increased scrutiny from the NYPD’s inspector general, the state attorney general and City Hall, say the cutback on stops is about self-preservation. Read the rest of this entry »
Dzhokhar appeared in court under heavy security Thursday ahead of his trial next month for the bombing of the Boston Marathon, telling the judge he was satisfied with his lawyers.
Tsarnaev, wearing gray pants, a black sweater-vest and a tie, was led in handcuffs into a federal courthouse in Boston for a pretrial hearing. It was his first appearance since July 2013.
Asked by the judge whether he had been kept up to speed on the court proceedings, Tsarnaev answered: “Yes, Your Honor.” Asked whether his lawyers were representing him adequately, he said, “They are.” Read the rest of this entry »