Day: May 16, 2017

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City reverses decision to disband police department


A city council in Minnesota reversed its decision Monday to disband the town’s police department after receiving heavy backlash from residents.

Forest Lake City Council members and Mayor Ben Winnick voted 4 to 1 to approve a three-year contract with the Forest Lake Police Department. The deal includes a retiree health-insurance benefit, 2 percent salary raise in 2017 and 2018 and a 3 percent increase in 2019, according to the Star Tribune.

 

MINNESOTA STUDENTS HOLD WALK-OUT PROTEST OVER CITY’S PLAN TO DISBAND POLICE DEPARTMENT

The city council and Winnick voted 3 to 2 last week to disband the police department and said the decision would save the town roughly $387,000 per year and expand police service positions from 25 to 27.

Twenty-three police officers would have lost their jobs and the law enforcement services for the area would have been contracted with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, according to CBS Minnesota.

Many residents openly opposed the decision and protested. Last Tuesday, about 1,300 students from the Forest Lake High School, Century and Southwest junior high schools walked out of class in a show of support for the police.

WOMAN IS FIRST MISS MINNESOTA USA CONTESTANT WITH DOWN SYNDROME

Hundreds of residents packed city council meetings and assembled a petition with 6,000 signatures.

“I can’t imagine it any other way,” said Jan Janssen, a Forest Lake resident who opposed the decision, to the Star Tribune. “Forest Lake needs its police department.”

“We have a lot of work to do but this is a step forward,” said Forest Lake Police Capt. Greg Weiss to Kare 11. “This is the first step to rebuilding obviously the strongest community in the state of Minnesota.”



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Alien superstructures nearby?


The world was electrified last year when it was suggested that scientists had spotted an “alien megastructure” orbiting a distant star.

Now a space boffin has suggested huge extraterrestrial constructions could be relatively easy to spot, so long as we look in the right place using the correct tools.

In 2016, one expert suggested the unexplained “winking” behaviour of a far-off sun called Tabby’s Star may have been caused by the rotation of a gigantic craft called a Dyson’s Sphere. 

These theoretical “megastructures” were dreamed up in the 1960s, when Freeman Dyson and Nikolai Kardashev suggested an advanced civilisation would inevitably seek to build a huge structure around a star to harvest its massive power.

Now an astronomer called Zaza Osmanov from the Free University of Tbilisi, Georgia, has suggested these gigantic solar power plants might be relatively easy to spot using current technology.

In a previous paper, he said the huge space stations are more likely to be shaped like thin discs rather than massive “spherical shells” which entirely surround a star.

This would allow a Dyson’s Sphere to exists in its parent star’s “habitable zone” – an area of space where life could thrive.

If some advanced alien empire really had built a ring in a star system’s habitable zone, it would be be heated to a temperature that it visible to current infrared telescopes such as the Very Large Telescope in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile, Osmanov,a new paper published on online archive Arxiv explained.

Osmanov called for the search for alien megastructures to focus on 64 pulsar stars which are relatively close to Earth.

However, he said it would extremely difficult to build a “cosmic megastructure”

“Rapidly rotating pulsars are very powerful and harvesting their energy would be quite profitable, but a habitable zone would be much farther and mass of a material required for constructing the mega-ring would exceed the total mass of all planets, asteroids, comets, centaurs and interplanetary dust in a typical planetary system by several orders of magnitude.”

So if an alien civilisation is powerful enough to build a Dyson’s Sphere, it’s probably strong enough to wipe out humanity.

Luckily, we haven’t actually got evidence that unequivocally proves the existence of any alien megastructure, so we can stop worrying about an imminent alien invasion for the timebeing.

This story originally appeared in The Sun.



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Ex-Baruch College fraternity brothers plead guilty in hazing death


Four men pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter Monday in the 2013 hazing death of a New York City college freshman, in a case that made headlines after investigators said the fraternity members went to great lengths to cover it up.

Former Pi Delta Psi fraternity members confessed that they physically abused Chun “Michael” Deng, 19, a Baruch College freshman, then tried to hide it in their rented house in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains in December 2013.

The four defendants, Kenny Kwan, Charles Lai, Raymond Lam and Sheldon Wong, had been charged with third-degree murder, but their charges were reduced after they pleaded guilty to felony manslaughter. They will be sentenced in December, but they face 22 to 36 months in prison.

Deng joined about 30 people on a trip to Tunkhannock Township, Pa., one week in December to take part in a pledging ritual for Pi Delta Psi, investigators said.

WOMAN CHARGED WITH SHOOTING, KILLING DAD FOLLOWING EVICTION FROM PARENTS’ MANSION

Fraternity members blindfolded Deng, forced him to wear a heavy backpack and then repeatedly tackled him during the hazing ritual, known as glass ceiling, police said.

Deng cursed and hit Lam at some point during the ritual, Monroe County Assistant District Kim Metzger told the judge. She said Kwan was the last brother to tackle Deng.

“Mr. Deng did not stand up after that moment,” Metzger said.

The fraternity members brought Deng inside the house where they changed his clothes and searched information online about his symptoms, prosecutors said.

The group called a national fraternity official, who told them to conceal any materials that had the fraternity symbol on it, The New York Times reported.

The fraternity brothers waited an hour before taking Deng to the hospital, according to court documents. Deng died a day later on Dec. 6 from major brain trauma.

Wong did not take part in the hazing but helped arrange it as a “pledge educator,” Metzger said.

The pleas come a week after prosecutors announced criminal charges against Beta Theta Pi and 18 Penn students after the death of Timothy Piazza, 19. Piazza died on Feb. 4 after he fell down a flight of stairs while intoxicated during a Beta Theta Pi pledge party. The fraternity members didn’t call an ambulance for 12 hours.

PENN STATE FRATERNITY BROTHERS CHARGED IN CONNECTION WITH STUDENT’S DEATH TO BE ARRAIGNED

Another suspect has pleaded guilty to hindering apprehension and was sentenced to probation. The fraternity itself was charged with murder, and dozens of other suspects face less serious charges.

Baruch College permanently banned Pi Delta Psi. The administration also established a moratorium on pledging at all Greek groups on campus.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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Arrest after human remains found at Lake Mead encased in concrete


A man has been arrested in connection with a body found encased in concrete near Lake Mead.

Edward Bedrusian, 54 was booked in the Clark County Detention Center in Nevada on one count of first-degree murder with a deadly weapon Saturday, according to court documents.

The remains of the deceased were spotted May 2. Workers near near Aztec Wash “observed a foul smell and discovered a partially exposed tarp and reported it,” Lake Mead spokeswoman Christie Vanover said.

The Clark County Coroner’s office is helping to identify the remains. At first, park rangers didn’t believe they were human, the Las Vegas Review Journal reported.

OREGON MAN WHO ALLEGEDLY BEHEADED HIS MOTHER SHOWED NO SIGNS OF ISSUES, FATHER SAYS

A search had been launched for anyone connected to this crime. Police arrested Bedrusian two weeks later.

Other details of the arrest weren’t immediately available. 

Andrew Craft is a Fox News multimedia reporter based in Las Vegas, Nevada . Follow him on twitter: @AndrewCraft



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'Impeach Maxine Waters' protesters gather outside home…



'Impeach Maxine Waters' protesters gather outside home...

(Third column, 10th story, link)


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Retired soccer star shares first selfie post-brain surgery


A retired U.S. women’s soccer star has shared her first selfie seven months after undergoing brain surgery for a tumor that doctors discovered while she was pregnant. 

“I have been hiding myself from a camera for the past 7 months,” Lauren Holiday, 29, wrote in a May 14 Instagram post. “I didn’t want anyone to see my paralyzed face, my eye that is not crossed, the bald spots from radiation & my half shaved head.”

Holiday, who is grinning and wearing a shirt emblazoned with “Girl Power” on it in the photo, had retired from soccer last year to concentrate on starting a family with her husband, Jrue Holiday, a professional basketball player on the New Orleans Pelicans. She was six months pregnant when she was diagnosed with the brain tumor and later gave birth to daughter Jrue Tyler Holiday in September. She underwent surgery to remove the tumor in October.

“Granted you can’t see any of those things in this picture, just a patch…it’s a huge step,” she continued in the Instagram post. “Today reminded me just how incredibly strong women are. The resilience of our bodies, the power of our minds, the ability to put other humans fully before ourselves, our compassionate hearts but most of all our undying love for our families, our friends and our precious babies.”

FLASHBACK: LAUREN HOLIDAY OPENS UP ABOUT HEALTH SCARE DURING PREGNANCY

The post was timed to Mother’s Day, which was Holiday’s first as a new mother. In February she had opened up to her followers about the fears she had while pregnant with Jrue. Her husband had taken a leave of absence from the New Orleans Pelicans to be by her side while doctors at Duke University Hospital removed the tumor and has since returned to the team.

“I went through the day admiring women at church, at lunch and those just walking down the street,” she wrote in Sunday’s post. “I am so proud to be a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a wife and most of all a mother.”

Holiday was a member of the 2012 and 2008 U.S. Olympic gold medal teams, and her post had received more than 38,250 likes as of Tuesday.



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Disney thief caught


Note to parents: Keep a close watch on your belongings at the “Happiest Place on Earth.”

A Florida mother has been accused of using her daughter to help steal a stroller at Walt Disney World in Orlando—and selling the high-end baby accessory online.

On April 15, Lauren Collazo reported that her $1,800 Bugaboo stroller, which she had left outside a Hollywood Studios attraction, was stolen while she was on a ride, reports WFTS.

DISNEY CRUISE LINE MAKES HISTORIC TRIP 

Disney World surveillance video showed a woman, later revealed to be Michelle Craig of Spring Hill, Fla., using Collazo’s stroller with a child inside. 

According to WFTS, Collazo had also stored several essential items in the stroller’s bottom compartment including wallets, her niece’s EpiPen, and her car keys—stranding the family at the park. Collazo was forced to call her husband, who had to fly in from Miami to help the family.

“It was the fact that she took it away from me the day that I needed it the most and ruined everybody’s day at Disney,” Collazo told WFTS.

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Detectives in Orange County issued an arrest warrant for Craig and, nearly three weeks after the incident, Craig turned herself in to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office Wednesday. Police discovered that the child Craig was seen pushing in the stroller was, in fact, her own daughter. 

Though the investigation is ongoing, authorities say they have since found multiple posts advertising different high-end strollers, diaper bags and designer purses for sale on Craig’s Facebook page, reports SaintPetersBlog.

Due to the value of the items, Craig now faces a charge of grand theft, an offense punishable with jail time, probation and/or additional fines. 



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Miss USA backtracks


Newly-crowned Miss USA Kara McCullough is clarifying her controversial remarks from Sunday night’s pageant when she called health care a privilege.

The 25-year-old was met with a lot of love and hate for her stance on health care but now she’s changing her mind.

“I am privileged to have health care and I do believe that it should be a right,” McCullough said on “Good Morning America” Tuesday. “I hope and pray moving forward that health care is a right for all worldwide.”

She continued, “I just want people to see where I was coming from. Having a job, I have to look at health care like it is a privilege.”

WHO IS MISS USA KARA MCCULLOUGH?

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission scientist also explained what she meant when she said during the pageant she does not consider herself “this diehard, ‘I don’t really care about men’ type of woman” adding “women — we are just as equal as men when it comes to opportunity in the workplace.”

She said on “GMA,” “I believe that if a person does a good job, they should be, you know, credited for that in a sense…[but] I don’t want anyone to look at it as if I’m not all about women’s rights, because I am. We deserve a lot when it comes to opportunity in the workplace as well as just like leadership positions. I’ve seen and witnessed firsthand the impact that women have.”

McCullough also addressed the backlash she received for her comments Sunday night, saying she was not surprised.

“I believe that is what America is based on, like having opinions and views,” she said. “But I would like to just take this moment to truly just clarify … what I said.”

You can find Sasha Savitsky on Twitter @SashaFB.



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Man who sent manifesto to Trump claims he 'doesn't know' where stolen guns are


The Wisconsin man who allegedly stole a cache of firearms and sent an anti-government manifesto to President Donald Trump said from jail he “doesn’t know” where some of the weapons are.

“They’re buried, okay? I don’t know,” suspect Joseph Jakubowski told WTMJ from jail. “Honestly, I give you, with all the blood in my body. I buried them and I don’t know where. I don’t know, woods look all the same.”

Jakubowski, 32, broke into a gun store near Janesville and stole 18 guns, two silencers and ammunition, and mailed the manifesto to the White House on April 4, investigators alleged.

His burned vehicle was found a few miles from the shop. Jakubowksi also sent the rambling, threatening manifesto to about two dozen other people before going on the run, authorities claimed.

Jakubowski was arrested in rural Vernon County, Wisconsin, on April 14, after a retired school counselor found him camping on his property and calmly talked to him before calling authorities. 

POLICE: COP SHOT IN UPSTATE NY, SUSPECT BARRICADED IN HOME

Authorities said they’ve found five of the stolen weapons – but an automatic weapon and 12 additional handguns might never be found.

They believe Jakubowski may have traded weapons to get a ride to Vernon County, WTMJ reported.

Jakubowski said that he “did get a ride in the beginning.” He didn’t mention making a weapons trade to do so, according to the station.

Jakubowski’s arrest ended fears over when and where he could possibly stage an attack. While he was on the run, authorities said they would offer extra security to House Speaker Paul Ryan and Ryan’s family, Fox News reported last month. Ryan is a native of Janesville. 

Jakubowski told WTMJ on Friday he had no plans to harm the public while on the run. 

GEORGIA BURGLARS ON THE RUN ARE KILLED AFTER CAR CRASHES INTO POND

Jakubowksi said he intended to go to North Dakota “to get off the grid, to go into the wild, to disappear.” He blamed the media for stoking public fear and said he wanted to be free “of society, the system, government, all of it. It’s all I wanted to do.”

The manifesto was proof he had no violent intent, he said. According to Jakubowski, if the media didn’t exist to tell people about what his assumed thoughts were, people would not have been scared.

“I ain’t trying to hide nothing now, because if anybody seen the title of my letter, it said ‘honor, dignity, truth,’ that’s what I stand for, that’s what I’m fighting for that’s exactly with the government, this system is destroying,” Jakubowski said.

During the manhunt, authorities said Jakubowski may have had an accomplice. But Jakubowski has claimed that he was on his own.

Jakubowski has pleaded not guilty to state and federal charges related to the burglary. He’s being held at the Rock County Jail in a high-security area away from other inmates, and is due back in court next month. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 



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Priest stabbed in neck during mass in Mexico


A Mexican priest was stabbed in the neck while he was saying mass in Mexico City’s cathedral Monday evening.

Witnesses say it looked like the attacker’s intention was to slit his throat.

Father Miguel Angel Machorro remains in critical condition, a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Mexico said.

MEXICO’S CATHOLIC CHURCH CALLS FOR SEARCH FOR MISSING PRIEST

The attacker, who was caught as was trying to run away, identified himself as a U.S. national. Mexican authorities identified him as John René Rock Schild, 35. The man said he is an artist and refused to offer any information that could incriminate him, Mexico City prosecutors said.

At a news conference, a lawyer of the archdiocese, Armando Martínez, said they needed more information to draw any conclusions.

“We cannot talk about terrorism, we cannot talk about motives because we obviously have no significant facts,” he said.

MEXICO’S CATHOLIC CHURCH: WORK ON TRUMP WALL IS TREASON

The stabbing took place in front of dozens of worshipers at the Mexico City cathedral, Latin America’s largest and a popular tourist draw on the landmark Zocalo square.

In a radio interview Tuesday morning, archdiocese spokesman Hugo Valdelomar provided some details of the attack.

“After celebrating mass at the high altar, Father Miguel came down [to the pews] to bless worshipers with holy water and when he turned to walk back to the altar, the man stops him and tries to slit his throat,” he said. “He grabbed his neck and tried to slit his throat.”

ANOTHER PRIEST GOES MISSING IN NORTHERN MEXICO, CATHOLIC CHURCH DEMANDS ACTION

Valdemar said that Father Miguel sustained serious wounds near the jugular vein and the lung and was bleeding profusely.

“We almost lost him right there,” he said.

The spokesman said that the attacker showed extreme coldness and declared he was not a Muslim nor did he belong to any Islamic movement. He noted that when the man was arrested he reserved his right to testify — “that means that he is not so crazy either, shall we say,” Valdelomar said.



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