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Member since: Fri Jul 1, 2016, 03:42 PM
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Georgia woman spends 3 months in jail over cotton candy mistaken for meth


A woman is suing Monroe County, Georgia, and a North Carolina company after a roadside drug test popular with law enforcement agencies falsely identified her cotton candy as methamphetamine. The woman, Dasha Fincher of Monroe County, seeks unspecified damages alleging false and malicious arrest and imprisonment, among numerous other complaints, in the incident on New Year's Eve 2016. The suit, which was filed Nov. 15 in U.S. District Court in Macon, claims that because she couldn't pay a $1 million bond on charges methamphetamine trafficking and possession, Fincher was improperly held in jail for more than three months in early 2017 before a state lab test found the false positive. The charges were dropped in April 2017.

The suit says Fincher was a passenger in the car when it was stopped on Dec. 31, 2016. It claims that Monroe County sheriff's deputies said they stopped the car because it had dark tinted windows and then became suspicious of the bag of blue cotton candy that Fincher was holding. In video from the deputies' dash camera that was provided to NBC News by Fincher's attorney, James Freeman, both deputies can be seen sniffing the bag as Fincher clutches her hands to her face. The video, which ends with Fincher's being handcuffed, includes captioned commentary from Freeman.

"I just couldn't believe it was happening," Fincher said Tuesday in a statement provided by her attorney. "Being locked up was hard on me because I was away from my family. I was most scared of my granddaughter forgetting who I was," she said. "My twin grandsons were born and I was supposed to be in the delivery room. My daughter had a miscarriage and I couldn't console her."

According to the suit, the field test was administered using a NARK II meth reagent pouch manufactured by Sirchie Acquisition Co. of Youngsville, North Carolina. It accuses Sirchie of negligence in its manufacturing of the NARK II and in its training of its client agencies.


Texas ATM causes chaos after it spits out $100 bills instead of $20 bills

Source: WTHR NBC

An ATM in the Houston area has been shut down and was temporarily guarded by law officers after mistakenly dispensing $100 bills instead of $10s and word of the glitch got out on social media.

Some Harris County sheriff's deputies protected the outdoor ATM after Sunday night's incident and notified Bank of America. A bank statement Monday says a vendor incorrectly loaded $100 bills in place of $10 bills. Bank of America also says customers will be able to keep the additional dispensed money.

Officials with North Carolina-based Bank of America didn't say how much cash was wrongly dispensed. According to KPRC-TV in Houston, the excitement went on for about two hours until a trooper alerted the sheriff's office, who arrived to shut the ATM down.

Read more: https://www.wthr.com/article/bank-says-customers-can-keep-100-bills-mistakenly-dispensed-atm

Tennessee Man Killed After Concrete 'Likely' Thrown Over Bridge Hits His Car: Police

Source: NBC

A man was killed after a concrete slab smashed into his windshield Tuesday in Tennessee. Joe Shelton Jr., 54, was driving east on Interstate 24 when a "chunk of concrete," which was likely thrown from the Shelby Avenue Bridge, went through the windshield of his Nissan, the Metro Nashville Police Department said in a statement.

The concrete piece hit Shelton as he was driving to work, leading him to lose control of his car, authorities said. Police said the concrete didn't appear to come from the bridge but "resembled a roadway curb." Authorities are investigating the case but do not currently have any suspects.

This is one of a few cases of people being killed by objects thrown off bridges in recent years. A Michigan dad, Kenneth White, was killed in October 2017 when a rock was thrown through onto windshield on his way to work. Five teens were charged with murder in connection with the incident. One pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and four pleaded guilty to manslaughter earlier this year.

Read more: https://www.nbc4i.com/news/inside-edition/tennessee-man-killed-after-concrete-039likely039-thrown-over-bridge-hits-his-car-police/1611050159

Chief deputy: More than 90 murders tied to Wise County inmate

Source: WFAA

DECATUR, Texas — A 78-year-old man that spent almost two months in the Wise County jail may be responsible for more than 90 murders, according to the Wise County Sheriff's Office. Samuel Little, who's already serving life behind bars in California for three killings there, was recently extradited to Texas because of possible links to unsolved cases here.

Wise County Chief Deputy Craig Johnson said Little may very well be one of the most dangerous men to ever set foot in the county. "That's a scary number [90]. That's more than the BTK killer and the Green River killer," said Johnson. The chief deputy said detectives from across the country visited Little during October and early November, after it became clear he was ready to open up about dozens of cold cases. "It was a steady stream of investigators," said Johnson. "We kept him in a cell by himself."

It was thought Little may be responsible for an unsolved homicide near Decatur from the 1980s, which was part of the reason he was being housed locally. But Johnson said it now appeared he wasn't tied to the case. Little has been indicted for murder in Ector County, and was transported there Tuesday morning.

The news of Little's stay in North Texas was first reported by the Wise County Messenger, with the sheriff releasing more details late Tuesday. The Texas Rangers, FBI and local departments from close to a dozen states suspect Little of being responsible for roughly 90 murders, according to a release from Wise County. The slayings stretch to as far back as 1970.

Read more: https://www.wfaa.com/article/news/chief-deputy-more-than-90-murders-tied-to-wise-county-inmate/287-614676896

Homeless vet, couple at center of GoFundMe controversy allegedly made up story: report

Source: NY Post

The New Jersey couple who raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in a viral charity campaign for a homeless man were allegedly working with the vagrant as part of an elaborate ruse, according to a new report. Prosecutors believe that Mark D’Amico and Kate McClure conspired with homeless man Johnny Bobbitt to create their get-rich-quick scheme in 2017, NBC’s Philadelphia affiliate reported Wednesday.

The couple turned themselves in to authorities on Wednesday, but Bobbitt was still at large, the news station said. According a source who spoke to the news outlet, which said it had a copy of a criminal complaint, all three are expected to face charges of conspiracy and theft by deception for working together to create the ruse. The Burlington County Prosecutor’s office is expected to make an announcement in the case Thursday, according to multiple reports.

Prosecutors did not immediately return a call for comment, and reps for the couple and Bobbitt were not available. McClure, 28, and D’Amico, 39, created a GoFundMe page in November 2017, claiming the homeless, drug addict Bobbitt spent his last $20 to fill up McClure’s empty gas tank after her car broke down on I-95 near Philadelphia. The charity campaign exploded, raising tens of thousands of dollars from unsuspecting donors in a matter of days — and ultimately shooting up to more than $400,000.

“It has changed my entire outlook about people, my outlook about people has skyrocketed,” McClure said of the donations at the time. Their plan began to unravel in August of this year, when Bobbit sued the couple, claiming they were withholding funds raised on the GoFundMe from him. McClure and D’Amico, both of Florence Township, NJ, accused Bobbit of being on drugs and refused to pay him until he was clean. In September, a lawyer for the couple announced that he expected they would both be indicted for their role in the scam — but it was not known that all three of them were suspected in the plot until Wednesday.

Read more: https://nypost.com/2018/11/15/homeless-vet-couple-at-center-of-gofundme-controversy-allegedly-made-up-story-report/

Election results 2018 California Propositions: Gas tax survives, hens freed from cages

Source: Desert Sun

With 97 percent of precincts reporting early Wednesday, California's most politicized ballot initiatives had both been voted down. Prop. 6, the gas tax repeal Republicans hoped would turn out voters upset by high taxes, trailed by more than 10 percentage points, while Prop. 10, which would have allowed cities to expand rent control policies, trailed by about 23 percentage points.

The campaigns for Prop. 10 — which could expand cities’ abilities to enact rent control measures — and Prop. 8 — which would cap profits at kidney dialysis clinics — have been this election cycle’s most expensive. Supporters and opponents of Prop. 8 collectively contributed $130 million, making it the most expensive ballot measure in California history, and Prop. 10 wasn’t far behind; supporters and opponents collectively contributed more than $100 million.

Even though it garnered less campaign cash, Prop. 6 was one of the 2018 election’s most partisan since Republicans adopted it as a rallying cry throughout the election season. The proposition sought to repeal 2017 Senate Bill 1, which increased gas and car taxes. Republican candidates throughout the state attached themselves to the gas tax repeal effort on the campaign trail, hoping middle-class Californians upset with the tax increase would turn out at the polls and support their candidates.

The Republicans identified Prop. 6 as central to their strategy to fend off the “blue wave” Democrats had hoped to summon, but Gov. Jerry Brown and a coalition of law enforcement and construction workers unions came out against the effort. They claimed the tax was necessary to fund needed road and bridge improvements throughout the state.

Read more: https://www.desertsun.com/story/news/politics/elections/2018/11/06/california-ballot-propositions-midterm-election-gas-tax-kidney-dialysis-rent-control-campaign/1858569002/

China's president vows to lower tariffs, increase imports amid tensions with US

Source: The Hill

Chinese president Xi Jinping vowed to lower tariffs, broaden market access and increase imports on Monday. Xi made the comments at a trade expo designed to demonstrate goodwill in the midst of the U.S.-China trade war, Reuters reports. The U.S. and China have been smacking escalating tariffs on each other's goods as trade negotiations stall. However, Xi's recent statements match comments Trump made Friday, expressing confidence that he could strike a deal with China at talks later this month.

"I think we'll make a deal with China," Trump told reporters. "We're getting much closer to doing something," he said. "They very much want to make a deal." He said that any deal they reached would have to be "a good deal for the United States" and a "fair deal" for both countries.

Though Bloomberg reported Friday that Trump asked Cabinet officials to draw up terms for a trade deal after a call with Xi, top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow tempered expectations.

"We're doing a normal, routine run-through of things that we've already put together and normal preparation," Kudlow told CNBC. "We're not on the cusp of a deal."

Read more: https://thehill.com/policy/finance/414919-chinas-president-vows-to-lower-tariffs-increase-imports-amid-tensions-with-us?amp&__twitter_impression=true

Florida man who killed two women at yoga studio spoke of "incel" hero Elliot Rodger in online video

Scott Paul Beierle, the man Tallahassee Police identified as the person who shot and killed two women at a yoga studio on Friday, expressed disturbing ideas about women and adopted the moniker “Carnifex” — Latin for executioner — in a series of online videos and music clips. Beierle, a 40-year-old resident of Deltona, Florida, died after shooting himself Friday. Police say he shot and killed 61-year-old Nancy Van Vessem and 21-year-old Maura Binkley and injured five others at the Hot Yoga Tallahassee studio.

Officer Damon Miller, a spokesman for the Tallahassee Police, said investigators are looking into Beierle’s motive and whether he knew any of the victims. Buzzfeed first reported on Beierle’s YouTube and SoundCloud accounts which included a video titled “Plight of the Adolescent Male,” where Beierle likened his younger self to mass murderer Elliot Rodger.

Rodger is a hero to the “incel” or involuntary celibate community, a largely online and deeply misogynistic subculture made up of men who view themselves as sexual outcasts victimized by the advances of feminism. In 2014, Rodger targeted a sorority on his college campus and killed six and injured another 14 people in Isla Vista, California. Before his rampage, Rodger posted a manifesto online blaming women for the fact that he was still a virgin. Rodgers has been referenced in several other killings, including a van-ramming attack in Toronto earlier this year that killed 10.


Ivanka Trump shows yet again she's no friend to women

First daughter, presidential adviser and failed shoe entrepreneur Ivanka Trump is hard at work empowering women! On Friday she headed to Iowa to campaign for Kim Reynolds, a Republican who became acting governor of the state last year, when Terry Branstad resigned to become US ambassador to China. Reynolds is facing off against the Democrat Fred Hubbell, a wealthy businessman who hasn’t run for public office before, and it’s a tight race.

If Reynolds wins she will be the first woman elected as governor in Iowa. But that would be nothing to celebrate. Having more women in office means nothing if those women enact regressive policies. And Reynolds’ horrific record on women’s health is a sign she would do just that. She has already been applauded by conservatives for signing the strictest abortion ban in America, which bars doctors from performing most abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. That’s normally a mere six weeks into a pregnancy.

Ivanka hasn’t made her views on abortion clear. “I don’t talk about my politics,” she said when asked to take a clear yes-or-no stand on the issue in a 2016 radio interview. However, her support for Reynolds is just the latest sign that Ivanka is against women having the right to choose. Last year, for example, Planned Parenthood’s president, Cecile Richards, wrote in her memoir that Jared Kushner and Ivanka offered her what she felt to be a “bribe”: Planned Parenthood could keep its federal funding if they stopped providing abortions.

Despite the fact that she is basically a female version of her father, Ivanka continues to portray herself as a champion of women, flying around the world to talk about female empowerment. One of the most important ways to empower women, however, is to give them control over their reproductive rights. Ivanka’s support for Reynolds, who is doing everything she can to take those rights away, is yet another reminder that Ivanka is no friend to women.

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