Tory Andrew Mitchell ousted from Cabinet after foul-mouthed row with police

Former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell, who quit the Cabinet after a media storm over his foul-mouthed row with police, has been hired to advise others on how to protect their reputation.

The senior Conservative MP will be paid £3,000-a-day as a 'senior adviser' to Montrose Associates, which specialises in helping clients deal with 'political and reputational threats'.

Mr Mitchell quit the government last year amid claims he called police 'f****** plebs' in a row about riding his bicycle through the gates of Downing Street, a phrase he denies using.


Former chief whip Andrew Mitchell is confident a prosecution review of the evidence in the 'Plebgate' row will back his version of events

He resigned in October after a police log, which appeared to corroborate the officers’ account, was leaked.

Scotland Yard is investigating his claim that the allegations were concocted. Preliminary findings are expected to be released within days.

However, the controversy has not stopped Mr Mitchell adding to his £65,000 role as an MP.

In addition to his one-day-a-month role with Montrose, revealed in his entry in the register of MPs' interests, he also earns £3,000-a-day as a member of the the advisory board of a 'growth and innovation consultancy' called The Foundation. He expects to commit six days a year to the job.

The revelation of his new job comes after it emerged Mr Mitchell is demanding an apology from Theresa May after privately accusing the Home Secretary of masterminding his exit from Government over ‘Plebgate’.

He is convinced he lost his job last autumn because of a police conspiracy – and that Mrs May was instrumental in turning the Cabinet against him when his fate hung in the balance.

And he also believes she let her view that his position had become untenable become known to the media.






Former Chief whip Andrew Mitchell (right) wants a personal apology from Theresa May (left) because he believes she turned Cabinet members against him during the 'Plebgate' row

Mr Mitchell wants Mrs May to personally apologise for ‘prejudging’ him. He believes she told colleagues he should not remain in his job because his continued presence was damaging the Government. He claims to have proof she briefed journalists to that effect.
When Mrs May was asked at the time whether she had been in the ‘vanguard’ of efforts to force him to step down, she said: ‘I’m not going to talk about private conversations.’

A friend of Mr Mitchell said last night: ‘There are many at Westminster who feel it would be nice if those who got it so wrong were to acknowledge that.’ A spokeswoman for Mrs May declined to comment.

Mr Mitchell, who is supported by powerful figures including former party leader Michael Howard and ex-Shadow Home Secretary David Davis, is confident a prosecution review of evidence gathered by Operation Alice, the Scotland Yard investigation into claims of police fabrication, will back his version of events.

A Channel 4 investigation cast doubt on the initial police account when it revealed that CCTV footage showed there was not a large group of tourists outside the gate during the row, as was originally claimed. And an email supposedly from a witness backing up the police account of events has also been called into question.

Andrew Mitchell in the famous 'plebgate' CCTV footage

Earlier this month The Mail on Sunday disclosed that Mr Mitchell had written to Deborah Glass, deputy chairman of the Independent Police Complaints Commission, to accuse police of a sustained ‘dishonest and illicit’ campaign to destroy him, including the leaking of information to the press that suggested the inquiry would dismiss his claims.

United in grief: Sports stars pay tribute to victims of Boston bombings

Some of America's biggest sports stars have paid tribute to the victims of yesterday's horrific Boston bombings, with many standing shoulder to shoulder at NBA, NHL and MLB games on Monday night to share in the country's grief.

At least three people were killed and more than 176 injured after two blasts ripped through the spectator area near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, the oldest and most prestigious race of its kind, just before 3 p.m.

Other shaken athletes took to Twitter to send their condolences to the people of Boston, many of whom are still coming to terms with how a euphoric sporting occasion turned to unspeakable carnage in just a few seconds.
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Silence: LA Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, left, and actor Harrison Ford, right, before the Dodgers faced San Diego



Heads bowed: New York players and children bowed their heads last night before the Knicks faced the Charlotte Bobcats



Remembered: San Antonio Spurs and Golden State Warriors had a minute's silence in Oakland, California

Monday night's NHL game between the Ottawa Senators and Boston Bruins in the city was postponed and the league said it 'wishes to express its sympathy to all affected by the tragic events that took place in Boston earlier this afternoon.'

The NBA also cancelled the basketball match between the Boston Celtics and Indiana which was scheduled for tonight.

A minute's silence was held in sports stadiums across the United States while Philadelphia Phillies center fielder Ben Revere had 'Pray for Boston' on his glove as he caught a fly ball against the Cincinnati Reds.

Meanwhile, Olympic swimming sensation Michael Phelps tweeted last night: 'My thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Boston.'
MLB Observes moment of silence ahead of Phillies-Reds game




What a catch: Philadelphia Phillies center fielder Ben Revere makes an impressive catch with his 'Pray for Boston' glove



Pray for Boston: Ben Revere's glove with a message for the people of Boston



Tribute: Baseball's St Louis Cardinals line up before facing the Pittsburgh Pirates



Magic: The NBA's Orlando Magic also observed the period of silence before their NBA game against the Chicago Bulls



Perspective: Calgary Flames held a minute's silence before facing Minnesota Wild at home

There has been no immediate claim of responsibility as reports emerged that one of the dead was eight-year-old Martin Richard. The little boy had been waiting to cheer his father, Bill, across the finish line. His mother, Denise, is undergoing brain surgery while his little sister, Jane, 6, lost a leg.

At least 17 people caught up in the worst atrocity since September 11 remain in a critical condition. The injuries ranged from cuts and bruises to amputations.

Many victims suffered lower leg injuries and shrapnel wounds. Some suffered ruptured eardrums.

My thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Boston— Michael Phelps (@MichaelPhelps) April 15, 2013

The twin blasts at the race took place about 12 seconds apart, around 550 feet from each other, knocking runners and spectators off their feet, shattering windows and sending smoke rising over the street. The devices found were believed to contain ball bearings.

As the prestigious marathon was thrown into chaos, Governor of Massachusetts Deval Patrick has since warned residents in the city to be vigilant.

Governor Patrick said that although Boston would be 'open' it would not be 'business as usual' after the horrifying explosions and warned there will be a 'heightened security presence' in the city.

About two hours after the winners crossed the finish line in the heart of central Boston, there was a loud explosion on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the photo bridge that marks the line. Another explosion could be heard a few seconds later.

The FBI said it was leading a 'potential terrorism investigation' by the city's joint terrorism taskforce into the twin explosions.



Blasts: Explosions have ripped through the spectator area near the finish line at the Boston Marathon




Horror: Police officers with their guns drawn hear the second explosion down the street. The first explosion knocked down a runner at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon

In a televised address, US President Barack Obama said those responsible will 'feel the full weight of justice'.

Speaking from the White House, he paid tribute to those who helped wounded runners and spectators, saying: 'The American people will say a prayer for Boston tonight, and Michelle and I send our deepest thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims in the wake of this senseless loss.

'We don't yet have all the answers but we do know that multiple people have been wounded, some gravely, in explosions at the Boston Marathon.'

Mr Obama added: 'We still do not know who did this, or why. And people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts.

'But, make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this, and we will find out who did this, we will find out why they did this.
'Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice.'

Bringing back the good old days of playing outside

Most of us remember the days when we could play football and ride our bikes in the street without too much fear of anything happening more ghastly than a grazed knee.

But that's not the case for the growing number of children being brought up in cities and large towns.

So a group of parents in Colchester have decided to adopt an idea that will see their road closed, cars driven out of the way and children will have free reign to play.

They also hope closing the road to traffic for two hours every week will help boost community spirit and give children a safe place to play during the summer.



Parents and children in Colchester react to the news that they can close their street for two hours to allow free play from August

Road closures during the Queen's Diamond Jubilee have seen an increase in the popularity of street parties.

Naomi Fuller, communications co-ordinator for Playing Out, an organisation that helps communities with similar schemes, said that Bristol was the first city to adopt the idea.

Ms Fuller said: 'The main aim behind it and the way it grew was based on active play, particularly for urban children that don't live near any green space.

'Bristol was the first local authority to make it easy for residents to apply for regular road closures for play and brought in a new policy to enable this to happen across the city.'

Some streets carry out road closures once a week while many others do it every two weeks or once a month.

She added that the idea was beneficial to children's health and got neighbours together, helping gain a sense of community.

Childminder Kim Barnetson said: 'It's not just about children playing out. It's about the community reclaiming their streets and using the area not only as something you drive through but somewhere you catch up with your neighbours.'


The schemes are designed for children in urban areas who don't always have access to green space

Mrs Barnetson said families wanted to continue what they had started with their Diamond Jubilee street party last summer.

She said: 'It was great to see the kids out in the street going up and down on their scooters.

'One of my neighbours put a little slip through the door about a scheme in Bristol and asked if it was something I would like to set up.

'I contacted the people in Bristol and they have been really helpful with the legal stuff. We spoke to Essex County Council and said we would like to pioneer the scheme.

'We're going to be guinea pigs and if it works we can encourage others to do it and if it doesn't then at least we have tried.'

The scheme was first used in Bristol two and a half years ago. Mothers Alice Ferguson and Amy Rose wanted to get to know their neighbours better.

Three years later there are more than 30 streets in Bristol and beyond replicating their Playing Out sessions

The first closure in King Stephen Road will take place next month.

Residents of King Stephen Road will have to inform Essex County Council when they want to close the road in advance.

They will then be able to shut it to cars for two hours. Residents will act as wardens at either end of the closure.

They will instruct through traffic they cannot enter as well as letting through emergency vehicles. Many people living on the street have said they will move their cars for the closure, but it is not compulsory, and people can drive down the street as long as they are going at walking speed and guided by stewards

Couple and their two young adopted daughters die from 'suspicious' carbon monoxide

Carbon monoxide has apparently killed a family of four, among them two children, in an eastern Pennsylvania home where police found a car running in the garage.

State police Lt. Vincent D'Angelo says authorities haven't yet determined whether the car was left running intentionally as part of a murder-suicide plot, or whether it was an accident.

Police were called to the Reitnauer family's 1525 Kumry Road in Milford Township at 11.20pm Monday, and found it filled with carbon monoxide coming from the attached garage.




Scene of tragedy: Carbon monoxide from a car left running in the garage apparently killed a family of four inside this Milford Township, Pa. home

The fire department also responded and discovered the victims. Paramedics on the scene attempted to revive the family, but it was too late.

D'Angelo says police are not looking for a suspect, and that there is no danger to the public.

The victims have been identified as 59-year-old Gary Reitnauer, his wife, Michele, 58, and their two adopted daughters, 16-year-old Yun Jiao 'Kimberly' Cao and Jamie Hongfan Reitnauer, 10, according to The Morning Call.

Autopsies will be performed on the victims to determine the exact cause of death, but as of Tuesday afternoon, a representative of the Bucks County Coroner's Office told MailOnline the procedures have yet to be scheduled.

PhillyBurbs.com reported that the family of four living in a house at the rear of Mayer's Well Drilling company consisted of the couple and two daughters adopted from Asia.

Police officers responded to the home on Kumry Road after getting a request to check up on the welfare of residents living there.

Sources tell ABC Action News that Gary Reitnauer's body was inside a car with the motor running and the garage door closed.



Terrible discovery: Police officers arrived at the house for a welfare check, only to find a man, his wife and one of the children dead in the garage, and their other daughter dead inside the house



Close-knit clan: The family lived in the five-bedroom house for about 15 years, and the kids' grandmother resided on the property in a trailer

Michelle Reitnauer and one of their children were also found dead inside the garage. Another girl was discovered inside the house.

Rob Zere, who identified himself as Mr Reitnauer's nephew, told CBS Philly: 'the family was trying to save each other, and it didn't work out.'

Quakertown Community School District Superintendent Lisa Andrejko posted the following message to the school district's website informing parents and students about the tragic incident and asking the community to pray for the family.

The school district made arrangements to bring in counselors to help students and staff cope with the loss.

Mayer's manager Paul Moser described the victims as a nice family who appeared loving. Speaking of the husband, Moser said Gary Reitnauer always appeared happy and laughing in the office.

The family lived in the five-bedroom house for about 15 years. The kids' grandmother lived on the property in a trailer.

Bucks County property records show the home on Kumry Road is owned by Gary Reitnauer, who has a company registered on his name called Right Now Engineering Inc.

Can sky diving and bumper cars at sea save the cruise ship industry?

The cruise ship industry might have hit rough seas this year, following a number of disasters with luxury liners, but one company is pulling out all the stops to lure customers back off dry land.

Royal Caribbean International unveiled its new Quantum class of ships today, and gimmicks to attract cruisers to the sea include sky diving and bumper cars.

It will be the first ship to offer guests a simulated sky diving experience - as well as a new thrilling capsule ride called North Star that climbs to 300 feet above sea level.



Attractions on board: This computer-generated image provided by the Royal Caribbean International cruise line shows a bumper car attraction planned for the forthcoming ship, Quantum of the Seas

A jewel-shaped glass capsule will hold 14 people and go over the side of the ship, offering passengers unobstructed views.

Interior staterooms that don't traditionally don't have a view will have a "virtual balcony" — an 80-inch LED screen providing real-time views of the ocean or port.

Families will also be able to book three different types of staterooms that can connect in various layouts.

For entertainment there will be bumper cars, roller skating and a circus school with a flying trapeze.

"This new generation of ships gave us an opportunity to make another leap in vessel design.

''Innovation has always been part of our DNA and we have taken advantage of all that creativity to design Quantum cruising," Richard D. Fain, chairman and CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. said in a statement.



The vessel: Quantum of the Seas is seen cruising through the seas in this computer-generated image - set to debut in 2014



Vantage point: A jewel-shaped glass capsule will hold 14 people and go over the side of the ship and then climb to 300 feet above the sea

The Quantum class will debut in fall 2014 with Quantum of the Seas, followed by sister ship Anthem of the Seas in spring 2015.

Quantum ships span 18 decks, encompass 167,800 gross registered tons, carry 4,180 guests at double occupancy and feature 2,090 staterooms.

The ships will initially be based out of Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, N.J.

Potential cruise ship customers might be apprehensive about taking to the seas though after the Carnival Cruise disaster in February.

Thousands of passengers and crew had to endure five days at sea with no power and under squalid conditions while the 900-foot vessel was towed to Mobile, Alabama.

And even this month, another cruise - The Crown Princess - was forced to return to Galveston, Texas, after toilets broke down during the seven-day Caribbean cruise to Honduras, Belize and Cozumel.



Crippled industry: In February 2012 the Carnival Lines cruise ship Triumph was disabled, leaving passengers stranded for five days, while it was towed back to Alabama (pictured)

Dutchman who confessed to frenzied knife murder of beautiful British backpacker

Police in India have revealed they are investigating the boyfriend of murdered British backpacker Sarah Groves over claims he owed her £6,000 since they started going out over New Year.

It came as the Dutch tourist accused of murdering was put on remand for five more days.

Richard de Witt was led out of Srinagar Court with a towel over his head by police in the northern state of Kashmir after a short hearing today.



Jammu and Kashmir Police walk Richard de Witt, the suspect accused in the murder of Sarah Groves, out of Srinagar Court after he was handed five more days on remand in Kashmir








Richard de Wit (left), who is accused of murdering British backpacker Sarah Groves (seen right last November) in India
Last night, Srinagar's Deputy Inspector General Aftul ul Mujtada said his detectives were investigating the loans separate from the inquiry into her murder.

They suspect that Saeed Shoda and his family may have befriended Ms Groves in the southern state of Goa to dupe her into giving them money.

He has told Mr Shoda the money must be repaid to Ms Groves' family.

Ms Groves was attacked and stabbed to death in her room on the Shoda family's New Beauty houseboat hotel on Srinagar's picturesque Lake Dal in the early hours of April 5.

De Wit, was arrested for her murder and later said he had killed her under the influence of cannabis, which had aggravated his paranoid condition, police said.

The victim had been living with Saeed Shoda and his family for several months after they met and began a relationship in Goa during Christmas.


Family: Saeed Shoda said Sarah had been enjoying her time with the family. The family is now under investigation







Discovered: Police said the 24-year-old was found inside the boat on the Dal Lake in Srinagar, Kashmir

Scene: The houseboat where the body of Sarah Groves was found in Srinagar

He had invited her to his home where they had shared a room and she had lived as part of the Shoda family.

Members of the Shoda family have given many interviews to newspapers and television stations voicing their grief at her death and describing her as 'like a daughter' to them.

But the disclosure that the financially comfortable family had borrowed large sums of money from Ms Groves has raised questions about the true nature of their relationship.


Location: Houseboat owner Abdul Rahim Shoda speaks on his mobile phone near the house boat where the body was found


'Wonderful girl': One of the sons of the owner of the houseboat owner described her as 'a wonderful girl' who had stayed on the boat for the last two months

Kashmiri neighbours said it was highly unusual for conservative Islamic families in Kashmir to be happy about unmarried couples sleeping together in their homes, while others noted that Ms Groves had been working hard in the family kitchen throughout her stay.

The Daily Telegraph reported today that DIG ul Mujtada said: 'The family of Sarah have expressed some misgivings about the [Shoda] family.

'Sarah had given Saeed some money. Since they were in Goa she gave him four to five lakhs (£5,000 to £6,200) and it must be paid back.'

There have been a number of cases in recent years of Kashmiri men starting relationships with foreign women to dupe them into giving them money, he added.

In 2008, Patrina Churm, a 55-year-old divorcee from Gateshead, was left penniless after her 30-year-old Kashmiri boyfriend siphoned her bank accounts and cheated her out of more than £80,000 by promising they would spend their lives together.

Months earlier another British woman, 54-year-old Sarah Matheson was also cheated out of £80,000 by a Kashmiri man she fell in love with while holidaying in Goa.

Richard De Wit, the accused, has told detectives the Shoda family had also asked to borrow money from him, but the Shoda family denied his claim.

Last night Saeed Shoda confirmed he had borrowed money from Ms Groves but denied there was an ulterior motive. She had given him 458,000 Rupees, just under £5,500.

He said: 'We had personal plans, we were in love, it's personal, what we wanted to do. Now it doesn't matter so I gave it back to her Dad. It doesn't matter because I lost someone who was everything to me.'

Amnesty? 'Gang Of Eight' immigration reform will turn illegal

The so-called 'Gang Of Eight,' a group of Republican and Democratic U.S. senators examining illegal immigration in America, will propose on Friday a federal law that would put undocumented immigrants on a road toward amnesty for the crime of being in the United States illegally.

Illegal aliens would have to wait 10 years to apply for citizenship, during which time they would be eligible for work authorizations, but not for federal government benefits.

After ten years, they could apply for green cards, and appeal for citizenship. That process would take at least 3 years, and require the payment of a $2,000 fine. It would also require them to learn to speak English, to pay back taxes, and to pass a criminal background check.

Residents brought illegally to the U.S. as children - the so called DREAM Act kids - would be eligible for green cards and citizenship in five years, without any payments.



An April 10 rally in front of the U.S. Capitol brought tens of thousands of immigration advocates, and generated more subway traffic in Washington, D.C. than on the day of President Barack Obama's second inauguration





Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio (L) is the child of Cuban emigres who has become the public face of immigration reform legislation. He appeared on all five major Sunday morning political talk shows on April 14, arguing against the idea that the Gang Of Eight plan was a conditional amnesty for illegal immigrants

An outline of the proposed law shared with reporters describes a massive and expensive effort to further secure the U.S.-Mexico border, while providing that pathway to citizenship for more than 11 million illegal aliens.

Republicans have insisted that border security had to come before providing papers to illegals, and they got what they wanted. The bill will only allow the amnesty procedures to proceed after border security has made substantial progress.

That will be defined by a number of criteria, the clearest of which is a 90 per cent apprehension rate for illegal border crossings.

$4.5 billion would be appropriated for border security, including $1.5 billion for border fence construction. The balance would pay for other measures including the deployment of new unmanned drones, using radar technology from the Defense Department, hiring 3,500 new U.S. Border Patrol agents, and adding National Guard troops to those human resources.


If the bill becomes law, U.S. employers will also be subject to strict new requirements for verifying that their employees are permitted to work in the United States.

The bill was scheduled for a Tuesday introduction, but Senate leaders rescheduled the rollout for Friday after terrorist bombs rocked the Boston Marathon.



Gang Of Eight senators (L-R) Marco Rubio, Sens. John McCain, Chuck Schumer, Marco Rubio and Bob Menendez have engaged in closed-door bipartisan negotiations on immigration reform for months





Border Patrol agents regularly detain illegal immigrants near the U.S.-Mexico border in Arizona, Texas and New Mexico. This group told Border Patrol agents that they came from Mexico and El Salvador. An additional surge in immigrant traffic has begun since immigration reform negotiations began

Alex Conant, the communications director for Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, tweeted the news Monday that senators had 'lots of concern there wouldn't be enough time to read bill before Wednesday's Judiciary hearing, so hearing's been moved to Friday.'

In a Wall Street Journal op-ed, Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain and New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer - both Gang Of eight members - wrote that 'Americans will accept a common-sense approach to the 11 million undocumented immigrants who are here now, and to prospective legal immigrants, provided that there will be no future waves of illegal immigration.'

'We believe our legislation represents a responsible, humane and enduring solution to the problem of the millions who are here illegally,' they added, 'while continuing to attract and assimilate some of the most skilled talent the world has to offer—but only if we also make good on broken promises to secure U.S. borders and enforce the law.'

McCain and Schumer are scheduled to meet with President Obama at 3:45 Tuesday afternoon. A White House official told MailOnline that the meeting would likely focus on the president's commitments to wrangle his fellow Democrats to support the legislation.



California is the home of up a large number of illegal immigrants, including some who protested in front of the office of California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein on April 10, in an attempt to persuade her to support immigration reform legislation

Other wife found on Facebook: Man could face jail time over other wife

Other wife found on Facebook - A man's other wife was found on Facebook thanks to Facebook's "People you may know" feature. A Washington state corrections officer has been charged with bigamy after it was revealed that the man had two wives. According to a report from the Oakland Press on April 16, Alan L. O'Neill married his first wife in 2001 then moved out in 2009. After changing his name, he then married again in 2009 without divorcing the first wife.

The man's bigamy was discovered when Facebook suggested a friendship connection between the two wives.

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist further explained the situation by saying,
“Wife No. 1 went to wife No. 2's page and saw a picture of her and her husband with a wedding cake. Wife No. 1 then called O'Neill’s mother. An hour later the defendant arrived at (Wife No. 1's) apartment, and she asked him several times if they were divorced,” court records show. “The defendant said, ‘No, we are still married.’”
Based on reports, 41-year-old Alan O’Neill allegedly requested that his first wife not disclose his dual marriage to anyone. Reportedly, he told her that he would fix the situation. However, she wasn't interested in obliging to his requests, and she later notified authorities.

O’Neill, who was previously known as Alan Fulk, was placed on administrative leave after being charged Thursday. The charge could land him up to a year in jail if convicted.

Please feel free to express your thoughts about this man whose other wife was found on Facebook.

Rachael Ray show sued

rachael ray sued by accountant Rachael Ray Show Sued by Former Accountant
Rachael Ray show sued - The Rachael Ray TV cooking show is being sued by a former accountant, Aaron Ferguson. Ferguson claims he was forced out of his job due to his eating disorder, and is asking for $1 million in damages.

Ferguson says in his lawsuit, filed in Manhattan’s state Supreme Court, that he has suffered from anorexia for about six years. Ferguson says his supervisor repeatedly exhibited "hostile behavior" and made "vile," discriminatory and hurtful comments. The comments included, "Anorexics are sick in the head," and, "Anorexics should not be able to work."

Ferguson’s lawyer, William H. Kaiser, said Thursday:
"The things that were said in front of my client were hurtful, and once they knew he had a problem with it they should have stopped."
Ferguson said he began working in July 2007 for CBS Television Distributions Inc., a CBS Corp. unit, and the producer and owner of the "Rachael Ray" show. After he complained about his treatment, he says, he was "forced out" in October 2007. Kaiser said the firing was retaliation: "He was punished for complaining."
The lawsuit, filed late Wednesday, names CBS Corp., CBSTD Inc. and three employees of the show as defendants. Rachael Ray is not named as a defendant.
There’s probably a lot more to this than what Ferguson claims, like maybe he couldn’t show up for work because he was in a coma from not eating too many times, so they fired him.

Source: hollywoodgrind

49 cellphones confiscated

Watch new interviews and fresh insights into the case of Oscar Pistorius.
49 cellphones confiscated - Police officials are fans too. According to an April 16 Associated Press report, 49 cell phones were confiscated from police officers after they were used to photograph South African sports star Oscar Pistorius after his arrest for the shooting death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

In a response to inquiries from the Parliament, the former lead investigator on the case, South African police minister Nathi Mthethwa said all 49 cellphones were confiscated from officers at Boschkop police station in Pretoria, and revealed that the cellphones had reportedly been used to photograph Pistorius during his transfer from the police station to court.

Mthethwa told the Associated Press that he feared that reporters had attempted to purchase photographs of key evidence from the police officers. Defending the confiscation, Mthethwa told Parliament, “This action was necessary after it came to light that photos were taken of a high profile individual who had been arrested.”

There are no reports of any police officers selling evidence photos in the case to reporters and the police ministry has not offered any further details on the cellphone photographs.

This is just the latest in the ongoing sensational Pistorius matter. Earlier this week, reports that the sports star was out partying spurred defensive comments from his publicist, who denied any rumor of inappropriate flirting or partying on her client’s part.

“It was the first time since the tragic and horrific events of February 14 that Oscar went out with friends,” she explained. “He has been out of the house with family, but this was the first time he went out to a restaurant with people other than close family. It is regrettable that what was supposed to be a low-key evening reconnecting with friends is now being blown out of proportion for sensational reasons.”

Other wife found on Facebook: He could face jail over other wife discovery (Video)

A man's other wife was found, on Facebook thanks to Facebook's "People you may know" feature. A Washington state corrections officer has been charged with bigamy after it was revealed that the man had two wives. According to a report from the Oakland Press on April 16, Alan L. O'Neill married his first wife in 2001 then moved out in 2009. After changing his name, he then married again in 2009 without divorcing the first wife.

The man's bigamy was discovered when Facebook suggested a friendship connection between the two wives.

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist further explained the situation by saying,

“Wife No. 1 went to wife No. 2's page and saw a picture of her and her husband with a wedding cake. Wife No. 1 then called O'Neill’s mother. An hour later the defendant arrived at (Wife No. 1's) apartment, and she asked him several times if they were divorced,” court records show. “The defendant said, ‘No, we are still married.’”

Based on reports, 41-year-old Alan O’Neill allegedly requested that his first wife not disclose his dual marriage to anyone. Reportedly, he told her that he would fix the situation. However, she wasn't interested in obliging to his requests, and she later notified authorities.

O’Neill, who was previously known as Alan Fulk, was placed on administrative leave after being charged Thursday. The charge could land him up to a year in jail if convicted.

Please feel free to express your thoughts about this man whose other wife was found on Facebook.

Source: Examiner

Fox pulls Family Guy

Fox pulls Family Guy, fox has pulled from websites a recent episode of “Family Guy” that depicts mass deaths at the Boston Marathon, and has no immediate plans to air it again.

Fox spokeswoman Gaude Paez said Tuesday the episode has been removed from Fox.com and Hulu.com.

In the episode, protagonist Peter Griffin is asked by sports announcer Bob Costas about his performance at the marathon. A flashback shows Peter mowing down runners with his car.

“I’ll tell ya, Bob, I just got in my car and drove it,” Griffin says. “And when there was a guy in my way, I killed him.”

Later, Peter befriends a terrorist who, unbeknownst to him, is plotting to blow up a bridge. When Peter dials a cellphone the friend has given him, explosions and screams are heard. On some websites, an edited clip has been circulating that fuses the two scenes, making it seem — incorrectly — as if the explosion was at the marathon. Some commenters have implied that the show “predicted” the bombings.

“Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane took to Twitter on Tuesday to vent anger over the edited clip and offer condolences to victims of Monday’s bombings at the marathon.

“The edited ‘Family Guy’ clip currently circulating is abhorrent,” MacFarlane tweeted. “The event was a crime and a tragedy, and my thoughts are with the victims.”

Source: Washingtonpost

Damning report says U.S. officials used torture after 9/11

The highest U.S. officials during the Bush presidency bore ultimate responsibility for the 'indisputable' use of torture, according to the report from an independent task force, and it urged President Barack Obama to close the Guantanamo detention camp by the end of 2014.

In one of the most comprehensive studies of U.S. treatment of terrorism suspects, the panel concluded that never before had there been 'the kind of considered and detailed discussions that occurred after 9/11 directly involving a president and his top advisers on the wisdom, propriety and legality of inflicting pain and torment on some detainees in our custody.'

'It is indisputable that the United States engaged in the practice of torture,' the 11-member task force said in their 577-page report.



Shut it down: A new report claims that Guantanamo Bay prison, seen here in 2002 not long after it opened, may be closed after NATO pulls out from Afghanistan in 2014

The scathing critique of methods used under the Republican administration of former President George W. Bush also sharpened the focus on the plight of inmates at Guantanamo, which Bush opened and his Democratic successor has failed to close.

Obama banned abusive interrogation techniques such as waterboarding when he took office in early 2009, but the widely condemned military prison at the U.S. Naval Base in Cuba has remained an object of condemnation by human rights advocates.

The panel was assembled by the nonpartisan Constitution Project think tank and their findings come as 45 inmates are carrying out a hunger strike in protest of their treatment.

A clash between guards and prisoners at the Guantanamo Bay camp last weekend and the release of harrowing accounts by inmates about force-feeding of hunger strikers threw a harsh spotlight on the predicament of the inmates, many held without charge or trial for more than decade.

The task force called the indefinite detention of prisoners at Guantanamo 'abhorrent and intolerable' and called for it to be closed by the end of 2014 when NATO's combat mission in Afghanistan is due to end and most U.S. troops will leave.

By then, the 166 Guantanamo prisoners should be tried in civilian or military courts, repatriated or transferred to countries that would not torture them, or moved to U.S. jails, the task force's majority recommended.






Past and present: The report focused on the rules put into place during President Bush's terms, but also called on President Obama for failing to changed much of the egregious protocols

But the 2014 goal will be hard to achieve because of legal, legislative and political obstacles Obama faces.

While the White House says he remains committed to shutting Guantanamo, he has offered no new path to doing so in his second term.

The panel, which included leading politicians from both parties, two U.S. retired generals and legal and ethics scholars, spent two years examining the U.S. treatment of suspected militants detained after the September 11, 2001, attacks.

Members of the task force described themselves as the closest thing to a 'truth commission' since Obama decided early in his presidency against convening a national commission to investigate post-9/11 practices.

Panel members interviewed former Clinton, Bush and Obama administration officials, military officers and former prisoners, and the investigation looked at U.S. practices at Guantanamo, in Afghanistan and Iraq and at the CIA's former secret prisons overseas.



Tense: The guards, seen here in 2007, recently fired on some of the prisoners during an altercation

The task force was chaired by Asa Hutchinson, a Republican former congressman and undersecretary of the Department of Homeland Security during the George W. Bush administration, and James Jones, a Democratic former congressman who served as U.S. ambassador to Mexico.

In a finding the panel said was its most notable and was reached 'without reservation,' the report said, 'Torture occurred in many instances and across a wide range of theaters.'


Renewed calls: Protests were held in Times Square last week calling for a closure of the prison

But the panel concluded there was 'no firm or persuasive evidence' that the use of such techniques yielded 'significant information of value.'

'The nation's highest officials bear some responsibility for allowing and contributing to the spread of torture,' the report said, though it did not name names.

The task force, while concluding that U.S. and international laws were violated, did not recommend legal action against any of those involved but it did press for tighter rules to prevent a recurrence of torture.

'We as a nation have to get this right,' Hutchinson told a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington.

The panel urged the U.S. government to release as much classified information as possible to help understand what went wrong and cope better with the next crisis.

'Publicly acknowledging this grave error, however belatedly, may mitigate some of those consequences and help undo some of the damage to our reputation at home and abroad,' the report said.

The sweeping report cataloged abusive interrogation techniques such as waterboarding, sleep deprivation and chaining prisoners in painful positions.

The task force also concluded that force-feeding hunger striking detainees is a form of abuse and should end.

'But at the same time the United States has a legitimate interest in preventing detainees from starving to death,' the panel said.

My mother is an evil monster who deserves to die in prison

A Wisconsin woman recently convicted of killing her daughter more than 50 years ago is an ‘evil monster’ who deserves to die in prison, said her adult son, who claims he suffered years of horrific abuse at his mother's hands.

Ruby C. Klokow, 76, of Sheboygan, pleaded no contest in February to second-degree murder in the 1957 death of her 6-month-old daughter, Jeaneen.

But as part of a plea agreement, prosecutors have agreed to recommend a sentence of 45 days in jail and 10 years' probation, citing her age and medical issues.

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Brother's heartbreak: James Klokow Jr. (left) says he wants his mother, Ruby Klokow (right) sentenced to 20 years for the killing of his toddler sister



Emotional: Mr Klokow wept as he talked about the slaying of his sister, calling their mother an 'evil monster' for harming a defenseless child

Ruby Klokow's son forgives, won't forget, abuse

That's unacceptable, said her son, James Klokow Jr. He wants his mother sentenced to 20 years, certain that she won't live long enough to serve the entire term.

‘Anybody that kills a little child that can't defend themselves is an evil monster and don't deserve to have freedom,’ the 57-year-old told The Associated Press on Monday, a few hours before his mother was originally scheduled to be sentenced.

The sentencing hearing was later delayed to May 1. A message left with her attorney was not immediately returned.

Ruby Klokow initially told investigators Jeaneen had rolled off a couch and bumped her head, and investigators ruled the baby's death an accident. But the case was reopened in 2008, after James Klokow reported stories of abuse.

After a lengthy investigation, Ruby Klokow eventually conceded she may have roughly thrown the baby on the couch, causing her to bounce to the floor.

‘I think she didn't want us to be born,’ James Klokow said.

Ruby Klokow's criminal case has been delayed several times since she was charged in 2011. Her mental health status was in question, but a judge ultimately decided she was competent to assist in her defense.

The baby's death forever haunted James Klokow. He said his mother blamed him, telling him it was his misbehavior that distracted her and led to Jeaneen's death.

He also told police that his mother regularly beat him, and that she had choked him and broke his arm and nose. He also described his mother covering the head of his mentally challenged younger brother and striking the wailing boy's toes one by one with a hammer.






Angel: When 6-month-old Jeaneen Klowkow died in 1957, her mother told police that the baby had fallen off a sofa; an autopsy found the baby had suffered two brain hemorrhages and a partially collapsed lung

‘Before I went to junior high school my mom would grab me by the neck, bounce my head ... off the wall, punched me as hard as she could with her fist in the stomach,’ he said.

‘She would take her fist and hit my across the ears. ... Believe me, I was hurting so bad that when I went to school, all I would do is stare.’

District attorney Joe DeCecco acknowledged that a 45-day sentence was light but said the plea agreement was in the best interest of the state.

He said it would have been difficult to convince a jury that the grandmotherly woman before them was once a very angry young woman who didn't want to be a mother and who lied to police.

Besides Jeaneen and James, Klokow had another child, Scott, who died as a baby. His body was disinterred as police investigated but his death could not be considered suspicious, DeCecco said

Mrs Klokow was charged with second-degree murder in the 1957 death of her 6-month-old daughter, Jeaneen, only after her son came forward in 2008 with horrific stories of childhood abuse.

District Attorney De Cecco cited Klokow's advanced age and health as factors in the plea agreement approved by Sheboygan County District Judge Angela Sutkiewicz.

De Cecco said if Klokow had been tried, she might have been acquitted altogether and walked free.

A jury could no longer have convicted her of a lesser charge, such as manslaughter, because of the statute of limitations.

No charges were filed after Jeaneen's death in 1957. Ruby Klokow told the police that the baby had fallen off a sofa while she was tending to a crying James.

An autopsy found that Jeaneen had suffered two brain hemorrhages, a partially collapsed lung and three scalp bruises.



Bargain: Ruby Klokow, left, leaves court with attorney Kirk Obear on Monday following a hearing in which she pleaded no contest to second-degree murder as part of a plea deal reached with prosecutors





Plea: Klokow's attorney, Kirk Obear, said he thought the case against was unfair. 'There were witnesses that could have been interviewed that have long since died,' he said

At a preliminary hearing five decades later, a forensic pathologist who reviewed documents in the case testified that the severity of the injuries didn't match Klokow's explanation.

According to a criminal complaint, Klokow admitted causing her daughter's death.

Klokow had been free pending trial and will remain free until formal sentencing April 15. After the plea hearing, she told reporters, 'It's not over until it's over.'

Her attorney, Kirk Obear, said he thought the case against Klokow was unfair. 'There were witnesses that could have been interviewed that have long since died,' he said.

Scott Klokow, another of Ruby Klokow's children, was found dead in his crib seven years after Jeaneen died. No charges have been filed in his death.

Obear noted that Jeaneen and Scott were exhumed but that nothing was discovered at odds with the initial accidental death rulings.

DeCecco's announcement last week of a plea agreement came as a relief to James Klokow, now 57. He said he had feared his mother 'turning and questioning (him) on the stand.'




Horror stories: James Klokow came forward in 2008, revealing how his mother regularly beat and choked him, punched him and broke his arm and nose

In an interview with The Associated Press, he said his mother had regularly beaten and choked him.

The case was delayed several times after Klokow was charged in 2011, including for mental tests to see if she was competent to stand trial.

Klokow was arrested at her home in February 2011 following a two-year investigation that uncovered a catalog of abuse suffered by her other children.

In 2009, Klokow's son James went to police with his long-held suspicion that his mother had killed Jeaneen at their home in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.

He said the family had suffered years of abuse when their mother had been drinking and believed his sister's death wasn't accidental.

Police reviewed their decades-old reports and searched for hospital and social service records as part of their investigation.




Infant grave: Klokow told detectives she grabbed the 6-month-old child and threw her toward the couch. The baby, she said, let out a 'different kind of cry' and her eyes looked strange, according to a criminal complaint
The body of the newborn was also exhumed and a new examination ordered. Another of her children, Scott, who died in 1964, was also exhumed and examined for abuse.

Two pathologists who reviewed the autopsy results agreed that Klokow's claim of a 16-inch fall from a sofa could hardly have caused the girl's injuries.

After Klokow was interviewed by detectives she admitted she had been 'mean' to her daughter and her son Scott.

According to a criminal complaint Klokow admitted she was frustrated that both Jeaneen and James were crying at the same time.

She told detectives she grabbed Jeaneen from her stroller and threw her toward the couch. The baby, she said, let out a 'different kind of cry' and her eyes looked strange, according to the complaint.

Klokow told police she was struggling to cope with four young children.

She told detectives she wished she had never had children and acknowledged being abusive towards them.

The criminal complaint detailed a long list of other abuse against the children, including allegations that she broke James's arm and nose in separate incidents, and injured his knees by kicking him with steel-toed boots on multiple occasions.

District Attorney Joe De Cecco cited Klokow's advanced age and health as factors in the agreement reached at Sheboygan County Circuit Court (pictured)

The complaint also says she made her son Bruce stand in a corner with a paper bag on his head at the age of five or six while she hit each of his toes with a hammer.

Prosecutor Joe DeCecco said in 2011: 'We have to recognise it was something that happened in 1957 and it wasn't intentional, although it was reckless.

'She had a lot of kids at a relatively young age, she wasn't happy in her marriage, there was a lot of drinking going on there and she had a temper.'