Orlando Ricardo Thompson was found guilty Thursday in the 2015 death of his co-worker Caleb Joshua Halley. Thompson faces up to life in prison.
Panama City police say 33-year-old Halley was working at Buddy’s Seafood Market when he and the 27-year-old Thompson began arguing about how much spice to add to the restaurant’s gumbo. Authorities say Thompson slashed Halley across the torso. He died two days later. The two had also been roommates at one point. Read the rest of this entry »
A man whose life sentence for drug distribution conspiracy was recently commuted by former President Barack Obama is back in jail after allegedly crashing his vehicle while fleeing from a drug deal.
“Because you have demonstrated the potential to turn your life around. … Now it is up to you to make the most of this opportunity.”
— Former president Barack Obama when commuting Robert Gill
Robert Martinez Gill, 68, had his life sentence commuted by President Obama in 2015 together with other 1,700 federal inmates as a broader strategy to give relief to nonviolent offenders serving prison for drug offenses, the San Antonio Express-News reports.
He’d served prison time for cocaine and heroin distribution conspiracy since 1992. He also earned a legal education inside prison libraries and petitioned the president for a second chance after his court appeals were unsuccessful.
In a signed notification approving the commutation application in 2015, then-President Obama wrote that Gill deserves it “because you have demonstrated the potential to turn your life around. … Now it is up to you to make the most of this opportunity.”
On Thursday, however, he was arrested in San Antonio by the police after allegedly crashing his vehicle into another motorist while fleeing from a drug deal. Read the rest of this entry »
The report is titled ‘Report On The Inquiry Into: The Department of Defense’s May 2014 Transfer to Qatar of Five law-of-war Detainees In Connection With the Recovery Of A Captive U.S. Soldier.’
Mary Chasten reports: The House Armed Services Committee has concluded that President Barack Obama “misled the public” and broke several laws when he swapped five Taliban leaders for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.
“Our report finds that the Administration clearly broke the law in not notifying Congress of the transfer,” declared committee chairman
“Leading up to the transfer, DOD officials misled Congress as to the status of negotiations. Pentagon officials best positioned to assess the national security risks were left out of the process, which increases the chances of dangerous consequences from the transfer.”
The committee presented several findings in its report.
The transfer of the Taliban Five violated several laws, including the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014. The constitutional arguments offered to justify the Department of Defense’s failure to provide the legally-required notification to the Committee 30 days in advance are incomplete and unconvincing. The violation of law also threatens constitutional separation of powers…
The Committee was misled about the extent and scope of efforts to arrange the Taliban Five transfer before it took place. The Department of Defense’s failure to communicate complete and accurate information severely harmed its relationship with the Committee, and threatens to upend a longstanding history and tradition of cooperation and comity.
The prisoners learned about their transfer on May 29, 2014, while Congress knew nothing. The department finally alerted Congress on May 31, “less than two hours” before the terrorists departed from GTMO.
The Committee also found that the five prisoners resumed their activities once they reached Qatar. “It is irresponsible to put these terrorists that much closer to the battlefield to settle a campaign promise and unconscionable to mislead Congress in the process,” said Thornberry.
During its investigation, the committee was told by the Pentagon’s serving General Counsel, Stephen Preston, that the Department of Justice “believed the president’s ‘constitutional authority’ over service members could permit the president to act notwithstanding the 30-day notification requirement.” Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] BREAKING: FBI on #SanBernardino Shooting: ‘We Are Now Investigating These Horrific Acts as an Act of Terrorism’Posted: December 4, 2015
BREAKING: FBI on #SanBernardino shooting: “We are now investigating these horrific acts as an act of terrorism.”
OH YES SHE DID: Sex with Student Gets Washington High School Drama Teacher Stephanie McCrea Sentenced to PrisonPosted: September 30, 2015
Stephanie McCrea seen in a photo from Evergreen High School Drama’s Instagram account
Prosecutors say McCrea and the boy had sex in her home and her office beginning in December.
VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) — A former Vancouver high school drama teacher has been sentenced to five years in prison for having sex with a 15-year-old student.
“The witness tampering charge came from communication she had with the victim through a fake Facebook page. Prosecutors say she asked the boy to keep their relationship quiet and practiced what to say if he spoke to law enforcement.”
The Columbian reports that 36-year-old Stephanie McCrea previously pleaded guilty to four counts of third-degree rape of a child and one count of tampering with a witness.
Prosecutors say McCrea and the boy had sex in her home and her office beginning in December….(read more)
Source: Q13 FOX News
Prosecutors have said the jury was divided on the sentence, with 11 favoring death and one favoring life without parole. Under Colorado law, jurors must be unanimous to impose the death penalty, so Holmes automatically got a life sentence.
Sadie Gurman reports: James Holmes was an angry quitter who gave up on life and turned his hatred into murder and mayhem against innocent victims in a Colorado movie theater, the judge said Wednesday before formally sentencing him to life in prison.
“We know that is very, very hard for people to see. We cannot feel the depths of your pain. We can only listen to everything you have expressed, and we pray for you…We are very sorry this tragedy happened, and sorry everyone has suffered so much.”
— Arlene Holmes
Samour contrasted Holmes’ bloody assault with the compassion of a juror who voted for a life sentence instead of the death penalty. And he noted the trial was fair, even if some victims were disappointed that Holmes didn’t get the death penalty.
“It is almost impossible to comprehend how a human being is capable of such acts.”
— Judge Carlos A. Samour Jr.
Samour formally sentenced Holmes to life in prison without parole for the murders of 12 people. He also was sentencing Holmes to more than to 3,200 additional years for attempted murder and an explosives conviction.
The judge had no other sentencing option on the murder charges after a jury earlier this month did not unanimously agree that Holmes should get the death penalty. Samour issued his sentence after two days of testimony from survivors of the attack, including first responders.
“Jurors rejected Holmes’ insanity plea, convicting him of murdering 12 people and trying to kill 70 others when he opened fire on a packed theater in suburban Denver on July 20, 2012.”
But he first spent more than half an hour defending the integrity of the justice system and disputing complaints that the trial was a waste of time. He noted the proceedings gave family members an opportunity to tell the world about their slain loved ones and provided survivors the chance to talk about their ordeal.
“I believe in the system. I said that before, and I’ll say it again. I believe in the system.”
— Judge Carlos A. Samour Jr.
Samour disputed some victims’ suggestion that Holmes would have an easy life behind bars, noting prison is harsh and restrictive.
More than 100 victims and survivors testified this week about the searing physical and emotional scars the 2012 shooting has left. Read the rest of this entry »
Mary Chastain reports: An explosion has killed Egyptian Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat and injured at least seven more people on Monday morning in Cairo.
Hossam Abdel Ghaffar, a spokesman for the health ministry, said Barakat passed away after surgeries. Ghaffar had previously stated he did not believe the prosecutor had suffered life-threatening injuries.
A witness spoke to Daily News Egypt:
A Heliopolis resident told Daily News Egypt they heard the explosion early Monday, and stepped onto their balcony to see a damaged motorcycle.
The witness also said there was an exploded vehicle, which according to the testimony, was Barakat’s security vehicle. The witness added that surrounding vehicles were in flames.
The damages on the attack scene included seven other injuries from Barakat’s staff and passengers, in addition to damages to 35 cars and nine houses in the area of the explosion.
No group has yet to take responsibility for the attack. A group called Giza Popular Resistance claimed it first, but someone removed it from their Facebook page and the Twitter account denounced the post. Read the rest of this entry »
Answer after the jump Read the rest of this entry »
Richard Johnson is a field artist, visual journalist and senior graphics editor at The Washington Post. Read more about his very unique perspective as a courtroom artist in the Bostom Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev death penalty debate here.
Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has been sentenced to death today by a jury in a Boston federal courthouse.
Tsarnaev was convicted by the same jury of seven women and five men last month of all 30 counts related to the deadly April 15, 2013 bombing. Three people were killed, including an 8-year-old boy, and another 260 were injured when Tsarnaev and his older brother, Tamerlan, detonated twin explosive devices near the finish line of the marathon. Three days later, the brothers murdered MIT police officer Sean Collier.
The jury today found death the penalty was “appropriate” for six of the 17 death penalty eligible counts against Dzhkohar Tsarnaev. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed in a shootout with police four days after the explosions….(read more)
FALL RIVER, Mass. — A Massachusetts jury of seven women and five men found Aaron Hernandez, the former New England Patriots tight end, guilty of murder in the first degree to conclude a nine-week trial in Bristol County Superior Court.
He will serve a life sentence without the possibility of parole.
Hernandez, 25, was on trial for murdering Odin Lloyd, a 27-year-old landscaper from Boston. He was also found guilty of unlawful firearm possession and unlawful ammunition possession after prosecutors presented a case based on circumstantial evidence due to a lack of eyewitnesses or a murder weapon.
Hernandez’s mother, Terri Hernandez, and his fiancee openly wept while the verdict was read. Hernandez was emotionless.
In closing arguments last Tuesday, Hernandez’s attorney, James Sultan, acknowledged for the first time that Hernandez was at the murder scene, but only as a witness, insinuating that one of Hernandez’s alleged accomplices – Ernest Wallace or Carlos Ortiz – shot Lloyd while high on phencyclidine, better known as PCP. Ortiz and Wallace both face murder charges, and are expected to be tried later this year…(read more)
[VIDEO] South Carolina Police Officer Michael Slager Charged With Murder, Denied Bond, Could Face 30 Years in PrisonPosted: April 8, 2015
South Carolina police officer Michael Slager was charged with murder after a video emerged of him shooting a black man in the back eight times. Mark Kelly reports.
— Robert Holguin (@ABC7Robert) September 25, 2014
Lane captured after an search that involved a helicopter and several law enforcement agencies
A 19-year-old Ohio man serving life in prison for killing three students in a high school cafeteria in 2012 briefly escaped from prison on Thursday, the authorities said.
The man, T. J. Lane, who was serving three life sentences for the murders, escaped with two other inmates from the Allen Oakwood Correctional Institution in Lima, Ohio, said Sgt. Andy Green of the Lima Police Department. Early Friday morning, the Ohio State Highway Patrol announced that Mr. Lane had been captured after an search that involved a helicopter and several law enforcement agencies.
The police had said the men, who escaped on foot, were unarmed but dangerous, and that a search was being conducted in the area around the prison. Read the rest of this entry »
Trujillo briefly closed her eyes as the verdict was read, but showed little emotion. Her family, however, left the courtroom in tears.
The Houston trial gained international notoriety because of the weapon — a blue suede closed toe pump, size 9 with 5 inch heels.
Prosecutors alleged Trujillo, 45, fatally bludgeoned her boyfriend, Dr. Stefan Andersson, by hitting him in the head 25 times with the heel of her stiletto shoe.
Trujillo is a diminutive woman, her attorney Jack Carroll said in court, while her boyfriend was much bigger. When an argument allegedly broke out that night, and she tried to defend herself, she grabbed the closest weapon at hand — her high heel.
Convicted Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro was found dead Tuesday inside his cell at the Correction Reception Center in Orient, Ohio, according to corrections officials.
JoEllen Smith of the Ohio Department of Corrections released the following statement.
Inmate Ariel Castro was found hanging in his cell this evening at 9:20 pm at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient. He was housed in protective custody which means he was in a cell by himself and rounds are required every 30 minutes at staggered intervals. Upon finding inmate Castro, prison medical staff began performing life saving measures. Shortly after he was transported to OSUMC where he was pronounced dead at 10:52 pm. A thorough review of this incident is underway and more information can be provided as it becomes available pending the status of the investigation.
Castro, 52, was sentenced last month to life in prison plus 1,000 years in the abductions of Amanda Berry, Michelle Knight and Gina DeJesus.Source: KTLA 5