Tucson AZ Jan 8 2011 Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona was shot and possibly killed Saturday. According to NPR, she is now dead. However, the local sheriff, Clarence Dupnick, has told MSNBC that she is still alive and a hospital spokesman has also told MSNBC that Giffords is alive and in surgery. She was hosting a public event at a Safeway grocery store on the north side of Tucson.
NPR says Giffords and 6 others were killed. According to Dupnick, 5 people were killed and 6 wounded.
The motives of the attacker, who was detained on the scene and taken into custody, are at this point unknown. Fox is reporting that the gunman “ran up and began shooting indiscriminately as Giffords addressed supporters.” According to the New York Times, the Tuscon Citizen is reporting that Giffords was shot at close range.
Witnesses say that the gunman was in his “late teens or early twenties.” An eyewitness says that he was young, mid-to-late 20s, white clean-shaven with short hair and wearing dark clothing.” According to their source, he looked like a “fringe character.”
Giffords was first elected represent Arizona’s 8th district in 2006. She was married to astronaut Mike Kelly.
Middle Island NY Jan 8 2011 Once the Longwood School District security guards ensured that students were out of the high school safely after the last bell rang on Dec. 22, they filed into a conference room for a ceremony to honor three coworkers who had been chosen as the school’s first Security Guards of the Year.
Mike Tutunjian, Kenneth Schaal and Leticia Quintarilla, who haved all worked for the district for more than seven years, won the three awards given out among a team of 20 security guards.
High school principal Don Murphy said the three are consistently among the first to respond to radio calls, and have a talent for dealing with agitated students in difficult situations.
“How they talk to volatile students in the first moments of crisis situations is absolutely crucial,” he said. “They consistently treat them with dignity and respect. Our kids trust these guards.”
Ms. Quintarilla said she wasn’t surprised when fellow award winner Mr. Tutunjian’s name was called.
“That’s just the kind of guy he is,” she said.
At a celebration following the award ceremony, many showered the three security guards with congratulations and compliments, which they received humbly.
“It helps when you love coming to work every day,” Mr. Tutunjian said.
Mr. Schaal said he accepts his award on behalf of all of his fellow security guards. He said the students at Longwood make him look forward to going to work every day.
“You have to love kids,” he said.
Source:North Shore Sun
Joanna McElrath Beckett, 36, and Robin Glen James, 46, were arrested Thursday. They face felony charges of murder and conspiracy to commit a crime, said Dean Growdon, Lassen County sheriff.
Deputies found McElrath’s body Sunday near a railroad trestle near Devil’s Corral seven miles west of Susanville.
He had been employed by the Susanville Police Department, promoted in 2006 from reserve officer to police officer.
Previously McElrath worked as a Lassen County sheriff’s deputy and at Sierra Army Depot in the security department.
Arraignment for Beckett and James is scheduled for Monday.
FLORENCE AL Jan 8 2011 – Quick reaction by an off-duty police officer foiled the escape of a suspected robber at Compass Bank on Cox Creek Parkway.
Angela Corrine Shuttleworth, 20, of Clearwater, Fla., is charged with first-degree robbery and making a terrorist threat in connection with the Friday afternoon robbery of the bank, police said. The bank is north of the Florence Boulevard and Cox Creek Parkway. The robbery was reported at 2:03 p.m.
Shuttleworth is accused of entering the bank and handing a teller a handwritten note indicating she was robbing the bank. The teller handed over an undetermined amount of money. Florence police detective Kevin Jackson said the note also indicated the robber was armed.
Meanwhile, an off-duty patrolman, Luke McIntyre, was in the bank conducting personal business when another teller told him the woman had just robbed the bank, Lt. Eric Nichols said.
“(McIntyre) waited for the lady to leave the bank and he followed her into the parking lot where he apprehended her and took her into custody,” Nichols said. “Her robbery was short-lived. From the time she entered the bank until the time she was taken into custody was no more than five minutes.”
Nichols said no one inside the bank was injured. Witnesses said there were four employees and two other customers in the bank.
After being taken into custody, Nichols said Shuttleworth was taken to the Florence Police Department where she was questioned and charged. Detectives said she refused to cooperate and asked for a lawyer.
Nichols said the money taken from the bank was recovered in the parking lot. Police have not found a weapon.
Meanwhile, a man who thought he was witnessing a assault on a woman pulled into the bank’s parking lot as McIntyre was making the arrest.
Donnie Reyes said he and his wife were going to get something to eat when they saw a guy on top of a woman in the bank parking lot.
“I pulled in to see if she needed help or what was going on,” Reyes said. “The man never told me he was a (police) officer; he just pulled out a gun, pointed it at us and started cursing and telling us to stay in the car.”
Reyes said when patrol units got there, they pulled him out of his car and handcuffed him and kept their guns on his wife. He said they told him he could be charged as an accomplice to the robbery.
McIntyre said he didn’t know whether Reyes was with the bank robber when Reyes approached him in the parking lot. He said while he was trying to control Shuttleworth, Reyes pulled up, cursing and threatening him.
Nichols said the most dangerous time of the entire arrest was when McIntyre came out of the bank and took Shuttleworth into custody.
“He had no idea if there was someone in the parking lot waiting on her or what,” Nichols said. “Luke said the number one concern he had after trying to control (the robber) was who was next.
“Under the circumstances, Luke had to take control of the situation, and the man was taken into custody. Even after I got (to the bank), we still thought it was possible that (the man) was involved with the bank robbery.”
Nichols said officers were finally able to get things sorted out and Reyes was released.
The robbery forced the bank to close early Friday; however, several customers continued to try and do banking despite the noticeable presence of law enforcement officers and large signs posted on the bank doors and drive-in windows.
Authorities said they don’t believe Shuttleworth acted alone, and detectives are continuing to look for an accomplice.
Detective Kevin Jackson said it is believed that someone let Shuttleworth out of a car and she walked to the bank.
“And we believe whoever the accomplice is, was coming back to pick her up,” Jackson said.
Anyone who saw Shuttleworth getting out of a car near the bank about 2 p.m. is asked to call police at 256-768-2728 or CrimeStoppers at 256-386-8685.
Shuttleworth is being held in the Lauderdale County Detention Center without bail.
First-degree robbery is a Class A felony punishable by 10 years to life if convicted. Making a terrorist threat is a Class C felony and carries a penalty of one to 10 years in prison if convicted.
The FBI is assisting in the investigation.
A substitute teacher at Vineland High School was charged Thursday with aggravated sexual assault on an unidentified student during a post-Christmas party, police said.
Meanwhile, a former middle school teacher’s aide was sentenced Friday to two years probation and ordered to complete a counseling course for sending suggestive pictures of herself to a 13-year-old Vineland public school student two years ago.
In the first case, city and county authorities announced the arrest Friday of 27-year-old Remarno O. Chambers, of State Street.
Authorities claim Chambers gave the student “alcohol and/or drugs at a party attended by high school students” and then attacked the student.
Police Capt. Rudy Beu said the investigation’s scope is growing and includes students from other public and private schools in Vineland.
Cumberland County First Assistant Prosecutor Harold Shapiro said the alleged assault took place at a Dec. 26 party.
City police and detectives from the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office are investigating the allegation. Investigators on Friday released few details about the case, including the gender of the alleged victim.
Beu said the student told someone about what had happened and that information eventually was passed on to police. Chambers also was at more than one party, he said.
“The victims, right now, they’re coming forward slowly,” Beu said. “The investigation started yesterday afternoon. Our detectives worked with the Prosecutor’s Office all night. But it’s expanding rapidly.”
Beu said a search warrant was executed at Chambers’ home Friday morning and “evidence” was seized.
Chambers is in Cumberland County Jail on $250,000 cash bail. An arraignment for him may be held Monday in county Superior Court in Bridgeton, court officials said.
In the second case, Cumberland County Superior Court Judge Benjamin Telsey sentenced Lauren Breslin on Friday in connection with lewd text messages.
Breslin, of Dove Court, entered a plea agreement on Nov. 1, 2010. She admitted to one count of endangering the welfare of a child. The charge was amended for sentencing purposes to a charge of sexual contact in the fourth-degree.
Vineland police arrested Breslin on April 2, 2009 after the boy’s mother found pictures of Breslin on his cell phone and recognized her.
The boy told investigators he and Breslin carried on a “relationship” for about a month that included her kissing him on the lips multiple times during school hours.
The district fired the former Vineland High School swimmer that month from her job at Veteran’s Memorial Intermediate School.
In addition to probation and counseling, Breslin will be subject to New Jersey’s sexual offender registration list, known as Megan’s List. She will have to reregister with authorities whenever she changes her address.
Before sentencing, Breslin stood through the reading of a letter the student’s mother wrote for the “victim impact statement” portion of the hearing. Victim Witness coordinator Rita Carr read the letter.
The letter also was critical of middle school officials and the security system, saying they had “closed their eyes” and that the school was “dysfunctional.”
The boy had to switch schools and is now receiving counseling, according to family members.
Hollywood CA Jan 8 2011 Crazy nights in Hollywood and West Hollywood have set 2011 off to a wild start. Following that fracas between deputies and punk-rock fans outside the Key Club on the Sunset Strip Thursday, the LAPD reports that a security guard was shot in an unrelated incident at a Hollywood club late Friday.
That attack shortly before midnight at Kress sent the guard to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where we was believed to be stable, LAPD Sgt. Raul Jovel told the Weekly.
Jovel says that preliminary reports from the scene indicate that the guard was responding to a fight inside the club at 6608 Hollywood Boulevard when someone pulled out a gun and opened fire.
Weho Daily reported the man was shot in the abdomen on a club dance floor.
Police are trying to piece together exactly what happened by reviewing security video footage and interviewing club-goers, though that last task was made difficult early Saturday because everyone scattered.
“There was a mass exodus after the shooting,” Jovel said. “Everyone ran out. We don’t have much of a description for the suspect, but we’re looking at video.”
No one else was injured and no arrests were made.
The circa-1930s multilevel venue occupies a space that once housed a Frederick’s of Hollywood lingerie boutique. The club opened around 2005.
MOBILE, Alabama Jan 8 2010 — A federal judge here today fined a local Roto-Rooter franchise and its president for dumping grease into the city’s sewer system and sentenced a former manager to 30 days in jail.
In front of an overflow crowed of the defendants’ supporters, who extended into the hallway, U.S. District Judge Kristi DuBose fined DHS Inc. $238,000 and its president, Donald Gregory Smith, $150,000. Smith, 49, of Semmes, will have to spend a year on probation.
The judge sentenced William L. Wilmoth Sr., who was the company’s general manager, to a month in jail followed by three years of probation, including 60 days of home confinement. In lieu of a fine for Wilmoth, who is unemployed, DuBose ordered the defendant to complete 200 hours of community service related to cleaning or preserving the environment.
The fine against DHS was the highest under advisory guidelines, according to the judge’s calculation of them. Had she calculated the guidelines the way the U.S. Probation Office initially did, the company could have faced a fine as high as $1.82 million. Smith, Wilmoth and the company also will have to pay $5,975 in restitution Mobile Area Water & Sewer System.
Malcolm Steeves, the director of the MAWSS, expressed disappointment in the fines.
“Our customers paid millions to get grease out of the sewers,” he said. “The fines are tiny compared to what our customers paid.”
Casi Callaway, executive director of Mobile Baykeeper, said she is happy that the judge hit DHS with the top fine under the guidelines.
“But those fines should have been much higher,” said Callaway, whose organization once sued MAWSS over sewage spills.
Those spills, in part, were caused by grease buildup in the sewers. Restaurants and caterers now are required to install traps preventing cooking grease from seeping into the sewers. DHS was one of a number of companies that MAWSS contracted with to pick up grease from those traps and deliver it to special treatment plants.
But former employees of DHS testified that they were instructed on occasion to simply pump the grease back into the sewers. One of those drivers, Michael Edington, pleaded guilty in October 2009 and testified against his former bosses. He is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 19.
A jury in August found DHS and Wilmoth, 55, of Lucedale, Miss., guilty of a conspiracy charge. But the jury declined to convict Wilmoth and Smith of felony violations of the Clean Water Act, opting instead for misdemeanor counts for negligence.
Prosecutors sought stiffer punishment for both Smith and Wilmoth. But Assistant U.S. Attorney Greg Bordenkircher said afterward that he was satisfied with the outcome. He said the prosecution achieved its goals, which were to protect Mobile Bay and its estuaries.
“The process of protecting the environment is really the first step,” he said. “Now, people will be more reticent to do this type of activity.”
DHS has suffered financial consequences beyond the court-imposed fines. MAWSS banned the company from work collecting grease, and the firm had to give up its pumping division altogether as a condition for keeping its Roto-Rooter franchise.
An accountant for DHS testified today that the grease and septic side of the business represented 5 to 6 percent of the overall revenue that the company earned.
Smith said he worked hard to expand the business that he parents started when they bought the Roto-Rooter franchise in 1962. He said he took particular pride in the pumping division, which he started.
“Our good name had been damaged,” he said. “Everything we worked so hard for over the part 30 years is now threatened.”
Smith’s brother, co-owner Chris Smith, said all employees since have signed a detailed code of ethics and have received more training.
“We’re very sorry and truly regret the events that led to this case,” said Chris Smith, who was not a defendant in the case. “We thought we had sufficient safeguards in place to make sure that that didn’t happen and we regret that we didn’t.”