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Terror In Germany: Suicide bomber wounds at least 10 at Ansbach restaurant

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GERMANY — Officials were responding to an explosion at a restaurant in Ansbach, Germany on Sunday.

According to police, one person is dead and nine more are wounded.

The incident prompted a ‘large-scale’ police operation, local media reported.

A police helicopter was also deployed.

Bavaria’s interior ministry later said the blast ‘was not an accident, and appears to have been intentional,’ Sky News reported.

The restaurant, ‘Eugene’s Winebar’, is near an ongoing three-day music festival.

Over 2,500 concert-goers were evacuated from the venue.

The city’s Mayor told local media the explosion was caused by an “explosive device.’

The attacker is believed to be the lone fatality.

Ansbach is a city in the German state of Bavaria. It is the capital of the administrative region of Middle Franconia.

(c) Breaking911 – T. Grant Benson / @GrantB911

Florida Man Sexually Assaulted Teen During Home Invasion While Parents Slept: Police

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FLORIDA — A burglar is behind bars thanks to the brave acts of a 17-year-old.

Buddy Lee Curry, 41, is being held on a $105,000 bond after breaking into a home in DeFuniak Springs and sexually battering a teenager. Curry entered the house on Walnut Drive early Friday morning armed with a pocket knife and took several items including an air compressor, chop saw, 2 wallets, and a bottle of prescription pills. There were also additional items such as lap tops and air tools which he was attempting to take from the home.

While inside the residence Curry went into the 17-year-old’s bedroom and exposed himself, got on top of the victim, put his hands around the victim’s throat and threatened their life if they attempted to scream.

During the encounter Curry touched the victim inappropriately.

The teenager was able to get away from Curry and wake up the parents who then confronted Curry inside the residence.

A struggle ensued between the victim’s father and Curry who then fled the scene in a light colored SUV. Deputies caught up with the suspect at Highway 90 West and Girl Scout Road after being positively identified by the victim from the back of an ambulance.
“She is a very, very brave girl,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “She acted courageously during an incredibly awful situation.”

On his person Curry was in possession of a labeled prescription bottle belonging to the victim’s father, a screw driver, and yellow handle pliers – all taken from the home.

While being booked into the Walton County Jail it was discovered Curry was also in possession of small metal tin containing methamphetamine and Oxycodone pills.

Later, Curry was also positively identified as the suspect in an attempted burglary where he tried stealing an ATV from a residence on Highway 90 West.

Curry is being charged with sexual battery on a person under the age of 18, burglary with battery, grand theft, battery, introduction of contraband into a jail, possession of a controlled substance, and grand theft auto.

WCSO

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DNC chair announces she will resign in aftermath of email controversy | Full Story

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PHILADELPHIA — The chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee said she will resign this week in the aftermath of the release of thousands of embarrassing internal email exchanges among Democratic officials.

The episode had pitched the party into turmoil on the eve of a convention that was promised to showcase unity.

“I know that electing Hillary Clinton as our next president is critical for America’s future,” Wasserman Schultz said in a statement released Sunday. “I look forward to serving as a surrogate for her campaign in Florida and across the country to ensure her victory.”

Wasserman Schultz, a member of Congress from south Florida, said her resignation will take effect upon the close of the convention. It came amid a growing drumbeat for her to step aside, including strong pressure from the Clinton campaign, according to a senior Democrat familiar with the negotiations.

Donna Brazile, a longtime Democratic strategist, will take over as interim chair, according to the DNC.

Campaign officials argued that she had become a lightning rod because of the hacked emails, this person said. Added to the pressure she was already under to leave, the episode became a last straw in many Democrats’ minds.

“I would ask her to step aside,” David Axelrod, a former adviser to President Obama, said on CNN of Debbie Wasserman Schultz. “I would ask her to step aside, because she’s a distraction on a week that is Hillary Clinton’s week.”

In a trove of messages released by hackers on the website WikiLeaks, party officials discuss boosting Hillary Clinton’s candidacy during the primaries – and disparage Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

The Clinton campaign – and several cyber security experts – said the leak was a political ploy carried out by the Russian government to aid in the election of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.

The events come at a time when concern was already growing among national security officials that Russia is attempting to meddle in the U.S. election; even before the leak, on Thursday, the White House convened a meeting that included representatives of intelligence agencies, the FBI, the National Security Council, the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security.

The controversy comes at a critical time politically, too – just as Clinton is hoping to patch up disagreements with Sanders supporters. And it undermines her claim that her party’s convention would reveal markedly less disunity than the Republican convention in Cleveland last week.

“Long overdue,” said Norman Solomon, a Sanders delegate from California who is trying to organize enough fellow delegates to replace Kaine with a more progressive vice presidential nominee. “It’s shameful that the Clinton campaign — and, it should be said, the Obama White House — served as longtime loyal enablers for such a flagrant abuser of democratic principles.”

Already, Wasserman Schultz was expected not to preside over the convention as its permanent chair, as had been originally planned. But former congressman Barney Frank, a co-chairman of the convention’s rules committee, denied that the appointment of Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (Ohio) on Saturday as permanent chair was related to the email controversy.

Wasserman Schultz “was never going to be the permanent chairman of the convention,” Frank said Sunday in an interview. “The national chair is never the permanent chair of the convention.”

Democratic convention officials and the Clinton campaign would not say whether Wasserman Schultz would have a speaking role at all or whether she will call the convention to order on Monday, as she did at the 2012 convention. Frank noted that if she did not speak, it would be “unusual.”

Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said that the DNC would need to investigate the hack, including checking to see whether any emails were “doctored,” and that the party would “take appropriate action.”

“What’s disturbing to us is that experts are telling us that Russian state hackers broke into the DNC, stole these emails, and other experts are now saying the Russians are releasing these emails for the purpose of actually helping Donald Trump,” Mook said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I don’t think it’s coincidental that these emails were released on the eve of our convention here, and that’s disturbing.”

The Washington Post reported last month that Russian government hackers penetrated the DNC, stealing opposition research about Donald Trump and compromising the party’s email and chat systems.

But that explanation seems unlikely to mollify Sanders supporters who are angry about the messages and distrustful of Clinton and the party.

The emails revealed a DNC official apparently discussing how to use Sanders’s religion against him to help Clinton ahead of the Kentucky and West Virginia primaries. And in another email, a Clinton campaign lawyer suggested to the DNC how it should respond to claims from the Sanders campaign that it was improperly using a joint fundraising committee with state parties.

They also reveal the prized perks given to the party’s top donors.

On Sunday, Sanders renewed his call for Wasserman Schultz to resign and said the emails vindicate his earlier claims that party officials were actively working to undermine his candidacy.

“I think she should resign, period,” Sanders said on ABC’s “This Week.” “And I think we need a new chair who is going to lead us in a very different direction.”

On Saturday, after a tense meeting of the rules committee, supporters of Clinton and Sanders reached a compromise to curtail the role of superdelegates in the party’s nominating process.

But the meeting also revealed unhappiness among Sanders supporters with Clinton’s choice of Sen. Timothy Kaine, Va., as her running mate. By the end of the day, some of Sanders’s supporters mulled putting an alternative name into nomination in opposition to Kaine.

Even though Sanders sought to redirect the outrage over the leaked emails and urged his supporters to focus on Trump, he acknowledged that Kaine is not the vice-presidential pick he had hoped for.

“Would I have preferred to see someone like an Elizabeth Warren selected by Secretary Clinton? Yes, I would have,” Sanders said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Asked about Kaine on CNN’s “State of the Union,” he added: “Are his political views different than mine? Yeah, they are. He’s more conservative than I am.”

Sensing an opening, Trump sent out a flurry of tweets criticizing Sanders for shifting his support to Clinton – and urging Sanders supporters to “fight.”

“Looks like the Bernie people will fight,” Trump tweeted Sunday morning. “If not, their BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS was a total waste of time.”

Monday’s convention program is expected to open with some of the party’s biggest political stars, and it will highlight some of the party’s most progressive voices.

Sanders, first lady Michelle Obama and Warren, the senator from Massachusetts and a liberal firebrand, are expected to kick off the opening session, which will be focused on hammering home Clinton’s agenda for families.

Sanders moved quickly on Sunday to separate the dispute with the DNC from his support for Clinton. He strongly denied that the revelations had changed his support for Clinton and said the real threat was Trump.

“To my mind, what is most important now is the defeating of the worst candidate for president that I have seen in my lifetime, Donald Trump, who is not qualified to be president by temperament, not qualified to be president by the ideas that he has brought forth,” Sanders said on ABC.

Meanwhile, other Democrats acknowledged that the dispute threatened to cause a serious rift.

Democratic strategist Donna Brazile, a vice chair of the convention, whose emails were caught up in the leak, said she apologized to the Sanders campaign for the revelations.

“I think, the allegations, the emails, the insensitivity, the stupidity needs to be addressed, and we are going the address it,” Brazile said on “This Week.”

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Anne Gearan, Abby Phillip

Comedian Katt Williams Detained During Police Investigation

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Comedian Katt Williams was being questioned by police Sunday after allegations of assault.

According to TMZ, ‘cops responded Sunday morning to the Sportsmen’s Lodge restaurant in Sherman Oaks after an employee alleged Katt had attacked her.’

Officers said the victim appeared to have visible injuries.

No further details were available.

On April 27, 2016, Williams was arrested in Atlanta, Georgia and charged with battery after allegedly throwing a salt shaker at the manager of Spondivits, a local restaurant. The manager claimed to have been hit in the mouth with the salt shaker after Williams’ group was denied preferential seating.

3 people found murdered near sleeping infant in Indianapolis

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INDIANAPOLIS – (News release / IMPD) – Detectives with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Homicide Unit are investigating a shooting that killed two women and a man.

On July 22, 2016, at approximately 7:18 a.m., IMPD officers responded to the 3400 block of Admar Court to check the premises of the apartment building. When officers arrived, they located an open front door and found two female and one male victims suffering from apparent gunshot wounds inside of an apartment. EMS personnel pronounced all three victims deceased at the scene.

The victims have been identified as 52-year-old Lisa Woods, 23-year-old Takara Coleman, and 25-year-old Cameron Baker. An 18-month-old female was found asleep on a bed inside of the apartment. This child was taken by Child Protective Services to Riley Hospital to be evaluated by a doctor but appeared to be unharmed during this incident.

IMPD Homicide detectives responded to the scene to begin their investigation and speak with potential witnesses. The Marion County Forensic Service Agency responded to the scene to begin processing and gathering forensic evidence.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at (317) 262-TIPS. Information given through Crime Stoppers is considered anonymous.

WATCH__Baby_unharmed_amidst_triple_homic_0_42951646_ver1.0_640_480
Takara Coleman, 23

Pokémon GO Game Causes Illegal Border Crossing

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SWEETGRASS, Mont. – U.S. Border Patrol Agents apprehended two juveniles crossing the U.S.-Canadian Border illegally while playing the Pokémon GO game on July 21.

Border Patrol Agents encountered two individuals walking southbound from Canada into the U.S. while playing the Pokémon GO game on their cellphones during the evening of July 21.

Agents quickly determined in the field that the juveniles were unaware of their surroundings.

The pair were later reunited with their mother at the nearby Border Patrol Station.

[READ NEXT: A reporter got caught playing Pokemon Go during a State Department briefing on ISIS]

“Both juveniles were so captivated by their Pokémon GO games that they lost track of where they were. They crossed the international border inadvertently, but agents were able to reunite them with their mother.” stated Public Affairs Officer Michael Rappold.

Second police officer on leave for ‘conflicting statements’ about shooting of unarmed man

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MIAMI — (Scroll down for video) — Authorities in North Miami, Florida, said Friday that they had placed a second police officer on leave as part of the investigation into a police shooting there earlier this week in which an officer shot and wounded an unarmed man.

The second officer was placed on unpaid administrative leave because of “conflicting statements given to the investigators” looking into the shooting, Larry Spring Jr., the North Miami city manager, said at a news conference.

The shooting Monday captured widespread attention after footage emerged showing the moments before the incident. In this video, Charles Kinsey, the man who was shot and wounded, is seen lying on the ground with his hands in the air and yelling to police that a man seated near him – a man with autism whom Kinsey cared for, it later emerged – was holding only a toy truck and not a weapon.

The officer who fired three rounds, striking Kinsey once in the leg, was identified Friday as Jonathan Aledda, a SWAT team member and four-year veteran of the department who had been singled out in the past for his tenacity and police work. Aledda, whose first name was also spelled “Jonathon” in documents released Friday, has been placed on leave because of the shooting.

“I assure you that we will go wherever the truth takes us,” North Miami mayor Smith Joseph said.

Spring said that Cmdr. Emile Hollant was placed on leave due to “evidence of conflicting statements” he gave to investigators. He declined to elaborate on what Hollant said.

Police said no gun was recovered at the scene. They had initially declined to identify the officer, as did the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the state agency that has taken over the shooting investigation. Authorities have released few details about the shooting, saying only that the officers were responding to a report of an armed man who was threatening to commit suicide.

“This investigation will be done thoroughly and it will be done right,” Councilman Scott Galvin said at Friday’s press conference. “It will be done with transparency and there will not be any cover-ups in the city of North Miami.”

Galvin also told reporters that “the police officer who you’ve just heard named, who has been put on leave, totally violated his trust from the public to protect and serve.”

While Galvin did not specify which officer he was referring to, he appeared to be referring to Hollant, adding: “By giving misinformation to this department, he not only jeopardized Mr. Kinsey’s life and the life of his client, but he jeopardized the life of every police officer who serves in this city.”

“We will not tolerate those types of behavior,” he said.

Spring said authorities have received hundreds of calls and emails in the wake of the shooting. A team has been assembled to go through all the comments, and officials have arranged for a “First Amendment zone” outside the police department, so that peaceful protesters can gather.

This weekend, officers would be in the community, visiting with residents and in churches, “to show that we stand with the community, not against the community,” he said.

The shooting in North Miami comes at a time of increased tensions between law enforcement and civilians. Recordings of recent fatal shootings by police in Louisiana and Minnesota stirred renewed unrest, and sparked conversations about the use of deadly force, while the fatal shootings of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, stoked fears about dangers faced by officers in the line of duty.

A day before Aledda was named, a police union official said that the officer had actually been aiming for the man with autism, rather than Kinsey, when he opened fire.

John Rivera, president of the Miami-Dade County Police Benevolent Association, called the shooting an accident and said Aledda thought that the man with the toy had a gun.

“Fearing for Mr. Kinsey’s life, [Aledda] discharged his firearm,” Rivera said during a news conference Thursday. “In trying to save Mr. Kinsey’s life, he missed and accidentally struck Mr. Kinsey.”

Rivera said that “the officers on the scene” did not know the man with autism had a toy rather than a weapon. However, Kinsey can be heard in the video shouting that the other man had a toy, and a witness in the area said he saw it through binoculars and tried to tell police, only to be brushed off.

“Sometimes police officers make mistakes,” Rivera said. “They are not computers. They are not robots. They are God’s creation.”

In the video showing the moments before the shooting, Kinsey can be seen lying on his back, hands raised, yelling to the officers, two of whom are seen hiding behind telephone poles a few dozen feet away.

“All he has is a toy truck in his hand,” Kinsey yells, while the other man sits next to him. “That’s all it is. There is no need for guns.”

Police said they later learned that Kinsey worked at a group home for people with intellectual disabilities and that the other man, who has autism, had left the facility.

In a statement obtained by the Miami Herald, Kinsley’s employer called him a “special hero,” who went “above and beyond” to protect the man, who lives in a group home.

“Charles is an honest, hardworking and dedicated individual who did every-thing in his power to de-escalate a very volatile and dangerous situation, while complying fully with the orders of the North Miami Police Department,” the MACtown statement read.

In the statement, MACtown described the group home resident as a “severely autistic 24-year-old young man.”

“Many of us are so upset because we work so hard to improve the lives of the people we serve — people with intellectual disabilities,” the statement read. “It is unimaginable, that as law-abiding citizens, simply doing our job, that our lives can be unjustly and unfairly threatened.”

City officials, asked whether they were concerned about Aledda’s safety given the recent shooting attacks on police in Baton Rouge and Dallas, said that “steps have been taken” to protect him.

Aledda was named as the department’s officer of the month in October 2014. The department’s announcement of the honor singled out two incidents for praise: In one case, they said, Aledda took into custody a man who had carried out a violent string of robberies across South Florida. In another, they described how Aledda arrested a man who robbed a Safeway and struck the officer multiple times before being taken into custody.

“Officer Aledda has been diligent in his work and consistently tenacious in his efforts to combat crime and apprehend criminals,” the announcement said. “He has been responsible for fifty-one arrests in a two month span. He brings credit upon himself and this agency.”

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is continuing its investigation of the shooting. When that probe finishes, Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the state attorney for Miami-Dade County, said her office will carry out its own investigation to determine whether the shooting was a criminal act.

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Mark Berman, Sarah Larimer

Hacked Emails and the DNC

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[UPDATE: Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz to step down as chair of the Democratic Party at the end of this week’s DNC, NBC News is reporting.]

The release of thousands of embarrassing internal email exchanges between Democratic Party officials threatens to overshadow the party’s message of unity on the eve of the party’s convention in Philadelphia.

A trove of messages released by hackers on the website Wikileaks apparently show party officials working to boost Hillary Clinton’s candidacy during the primary.

[READ THE HACKED EMAILS HERE]

The controversy comes at a critical time – just as Clinton is hoping to patch up disagreements with supporters of her primary rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. And it undermines Clinton’s claim that her party’s convention would reveal markedly less disunity than the Republican convention in Cleveland last week.

Democrats now face the possibility that their embattled chairwoman, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., will be marginalized in the convention to avoid acrimony on the floor.

She will not preside over the convention as its permanent chairman. But former representative Barney Frank, a co-chairman of the convention’s rules committee, denied that the appointment of Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, as permanent chairman was related to the email controversy.

“She was never going to be the permanent chairman of the convention,” Frank said in an interview on Sunday. “The national chair is never the permanent chair of the convention.”

Democratic convention officials and the Clinton campaign would not say whether Wasserman Schultz would have a speaking role at all. Frank noted that if she did not speak, it would be “unusual.”

On Sunday, Sanders renewed his call for Wasserman Schultz to resign and said that the emails vindicate his claims during the primary that party officials were actively working to undermine his candidacy.

“I think she should resign, period,” Sanders said on ABC News’ “This Week.” “And I think we need a new chair who is going to lead us in a very different direction.”

Seeking to minimize the damage, Clinton campaign officials framed the leak as a political ploy, carried out by the Russian government to aid in the election of Republican nominee Donald Trump.

Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said that the DNC would need to investigate the hack, including checking to see if any emails were “doctored,” and that the party would “take appropriate action.”

“What’s disturbing to us is that experts are telling us that Russian state hackers broke into the DNC, stole these emails, and other experts are now saying the Russians are releasing these emails for the purpose of actually helping Donald Trump,” Mook said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I don’t think it’s coincidental that these emails were released on the eve of our convention here, and that’s disturbing.”

But that explanation seems unlikely to mollify Sanders supporters who are angry about the messages and are already distrustful of Clinton and the party.

On Saturday, after a tense meeting of the party’s rules committee, supporters of Clinton and Sanders reached a compromise to curtail the role of “superdelegates” in the party’s nominating process.

But the meeting also revealed unhappiness among Sanders supporters with Clinton’s choice of Sen. Timothy Kaine, D-Va., as her running mate. By the end of the day, some of Sanders’s supporters mulled putting an alternate name into nomination in opposition to Kaine.

Even while Sanders sought to redirect the outrage over the leaked emails and urged his supporters to focus on Trump, he acknowledged that Kaine is not the vice presidential pick he had hoped for.

“Would I have preferred to see someone like an Elizabeth Warren selected by Secretary Clinton? Yes, I would have,” Sanders said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Asked about Kaine on CNN’s State of the Union, he added: “Are his political views different than mine? Yeah, they are. He’s more conservative than I am.”

Sensing an opening, Trump sent out a flurry of tweets criticizing Sanders for shifting his support to Clinton – and urging Sanders supporters to “fight.”

“Looks like the Bernie people will fight,” Trump tweeted on Sunday morning. “If not, their BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS was a total waste of time.”

Monday’s convention program is expected to open with a showing of some of the party’s biggest political stars, and it will also highlight some of the party’s most progressive voices.

Sanders, first lady Michelle Obama and liberal firebrand Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are all expected to kick off the opening session, which will be focused on hammering home Clinton’s agenda for families.

Sanders moved quickly on Sunday to separate the dispute with the DNC from his support for Clinton. He strongly denied that the revelations had changed his support for Clinton and said that the real threat was Trump.

“To my mind, what is most important now is the defeating of the worst candidate for president that I have seen in my lifetime, Donald Trump, who is not qualified to be president by temperament, not qualified to be president by the ideas that he has brought forth,” Sanders said on ABC.

Meanwhile, other Democrats acknowledged that the dispute threatened to cause a serious rift.

Democratic strategist Donna Brazile, a co-chair of the convention whose emails were also caught up in the leak, said that she apologized to Sanders’ campaign for the revelations.

“I think, the allegations, the emails, the insensitivity, the stupidity needs to be addressed and we are going the address it,” Brazile said on ABC News’ “This Week.”

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Abby Phillip

Debbie Wasserman Schultz

D.C. Man Pleads Guilty to Murder In Broad Daylight Slaying of Man Near Public Library

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Monet Curtis was found guilty of one count of second-degree murder and one count of first-degree child abuse resulting in death of her 20 month old son. Curtis faces up to 40 years in prison for her crimes.
Monet Curtis was found guilty of one count of second-degree murder and one count of first-degree child abuse resulting in death of her 20 month old son. Curtis faces up to 40 years in prison for her crimes.

WASHINGTON – Alphonso Roberts, 32, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty today to a charge of second-degree murder while armed for killing a man earlier this year outside a public library, announced U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips, Michael Boxler, Special Agent in Charge of the Washington Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and Cathy L. Lanier, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

In another case, Roberts pled guilty earlier this week to a federal firearms offense.

Today’s plea, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, involved the Feb. 10, 2016 slaying of Maurico Walker. It followed a guilty plea on July 18, 2016, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to a federal charge of illegal possession of a firearm.

The pleas, subject to approval in their respective courts, call for Roberts to serve a total of 20 years in prison. The plea agreements call for Roberts to be sentenced to 20 years in prison in the murder case and 15 years in the firearms case, to run concurrently. The Honorable Robert E. Morin scheduled sentencing in the murder case for Sept. 16, 2016. The Honorable Reggie B. Walton scheduled sentencing in the firearms case for Oct. 14, 2016.

According to the government’s evidence, the murder took place on Feb. 10, 2016, outside the Anacostia Library, in the 1800 block of Good Hope Road SE. The chain of events began at 4 p.m. in the 2100 block of R Street SE, nearby. The victim, Maurico Walker, 23, and another person had been checking for unlocked car doors in the area. Roberts, who resided nearby, spotted the second person taking items from his Volvo. Roberts confronted the two, and they walked away. Moments later, as Mr. Walker and the second person were walking over the grass lot adjacent to the library Roberts came by in his Volvo. He pulled to the curb, got out of the vehicle, pulled out a handgun and began shooting. Mr. Walker ran back through the lot, but was shot in the back and head and collapsed. He later died from these injuries.

The firearms charge stems from a search conducted on Feb. 25, 2016, at Roberts’s apartment. During the search, officers recovered, among other items, a loaded Glock 9-millimeter semi-automatic handgun from the top shelf of a bedroom closet. The gun was not the murder weapon. Roberts, who had an earlier felony conviction, was legally barred from possessing any firearm. He was arrested following the search and has been in custody ever since.

In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Phillips, Special Agent in Charge Boxler, and Chief Lanier commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department and ATF’s Firearms Technology Branch. They also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Assistant U.S Attorney Natalia Medina, who is prosecuting the firearms case, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Lindsey Merikas, who is prosecuting the murder case.

A midnight airstrike killed a 2-day-old infant in Aleppo’s Children’s Hospital

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(Photo Source: Abdalrahman Ismail/Reuters)

Even a 2-day-old baby in a pediatric hospital is not safe in Aleppo.

A relative calm in the northern Syrian city on Saturday night was shattered by airstrikes that targeted hospitals. Government forces have been bombarding the city lately, and their helicopters allegedly dropped the missiles.

One of them, the Children’s Hospital, is run by a Syrian organization called the Independent Doctors Association (IDA). It released a statement saying that the bombing cut off the oxygen supply to a room where babies were being cared for and that one died. The hospital had been struck once earlier in the night, but a second hit did worse damage. A video posted by IDA shows the aftermath of the first strike.

“The situation is so bad. The hospital is greatly damaged and this is not the first time. We are really tired,” the hospital’s head nurse was quoted as saying, apparently while cradling the newly born, newly departed infant boy. “After the second strike, we had to move him downstairs to the bomb shelter, and that’s why he died.”

A total of four hospitals were reported to have been bombed on Saturday night, as well as the city’s central blood bank. All are said to be out of commission.

The IDA statement said its specialized hospital for children wouldn’t reopen until it can be assured of its protection. Given Syria’s recent history, that would be a surprising development. Government forces have targeted health-care providers for years, destroying hundreds of hospitals and killing hundreds of doctors, nurses and patients.

A World Health Organization report this year documented the killings of more than 1,000 people in attacks around the world aimed at health-care providers. Almost 40 percent of those were in Syria.

Aleppo is presently under siege-like conditions. The city, once Syria’s most populous, is divided between government forces and anti-government militias. Recent gains by government forces have shut off the last supply routes for food to rebel-controlled areas, stoking fears of an impending humanitarian catastrophe. Government forces have been bolstered by robust air support from the Russians.

Marianne Gasser, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Syria, was quoted by Agence France-Presse as saying that the hospital strikes filled her with “overwhelming despair.”

“I think about the people who died, and keep dying, again and again. I think about the patients and their families. I feel for the doctors who want to help but can’t anymore,” she said.

The grinding civil war has brutally uprooted civilians. Millions have fled the country. Half of the population has been displaced. The exact number of civilian dead varies, but at least 280,000 Syrians have been killed, though other credible estimates go as high as almost half a million.

On Tuesday, a suspected U.S.-led coalition airstrike killed dozens of civilians just north of the city of Manbij, not far from Aleppo. The U.S. military says it is investigating those claims, though it has stopped publishing the results of those probes.

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Max Bearak

(Photo Source: Abdalrahman Ismail/Reuters)
(Photo Source: Abdalrahman Ismail/Reuters)

How a massive lobster was rescued from its fate at a South Florida restaurant

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Getty images

This probably isn’t what restaurant owner Joe Melluso was expecting when he procured a really, really big lobster.

To be honest, it’s probably not what the lobster was expecting, either.

But this week, the lobster — which was destined to become the dinner of some restaurant patron in South Florida — was saved from that fate.

The crustacean has now been given a name, Larry. And, according to reports, Larry the lobster is headed to a new destination, too — the Maine State Aquarium.

“It’s something different that I’m proud of that we did,” Amir Rossi, one of the people who rescued Larry, told ABC’s Miami affiliate WPLG. “How many people can actually say that they saved a lobster?”

Here’s how this all happened: Larry is, in lobster terms, pretty big. Almost 15 pounds, in fact. After arriving at the Tin Fish restaurant in Sunrise, Florida, earlier this week, the massive lobster was featured in a WPLG report.

“A Maine lobster that is older than Broward County will soon be served at a Sunrise seafood restaurant,” WPLG reported earlier this week.

Rossi spotted a Facebook post from the station, according to the Miami Herald, and contacted John Merritt, of the group iRescue Wildlife. More people, including Erik Martinez and Brooke Estren, joined the effort, too.

The Herald reported: “Merritt contacted the restaurant with the plan to buy the lobster and send him back to his natural habitat, Maine. Meanwhile, Martinez and Estren scrambled to learn about shipping a live lobster.

” ‘Before the sun went down [Tuesday], I ran to the beach because supposedly you need to use a giant towel that’s soaked in saltwater,’ Estren said. ‘And you have to put it in the freezer. They wrap him in it, I guess as it melts, it keeps him alive. I didn’t know about that.’ ”

It cost $300 to purchase the lobster, Estren told the Herald. And that’s not including shipping.

The Associated Press put Larry’s estimated age at 60 to 110 years old. The Portland Press Herald spoke to experts in the field who said there is no “established method” for figuring out exactly how old lobster is.

“My whole life’s been about fish and seafood,” Melluso, the Tin Fish chain founder and owner, told the Herald. “I’m happiest when I have a knife in my hand and fish fileted. I’ve trained and learned from all the great old guys. I think I have a responsibility to be awesome and to teach and carry on some of the heritage that’s associated with it.

“At first, when I heard there were organizations involved, I was like, ‘Ah, that’s so silly,’ ” he continued. “Then, I was like, ‘They’re looking to protect and serve the species in a responsible way. I should be thinking like that.'”

Jeff Nichols, a spokesman for the Maine Department of Marine Resources, told The Washington Post in an email Friday that Larry had not yet arrived. The lobster would be quarantined to “protect the health of other marine life on display,” and staff would monitor his health. The aquarium has no plans beyond that, Nichols wrote.

A 17-pound lobster is already at the facility, according to its website.

“He’s been around a long time,” Estren, one of the rescuers, told Local 10 News. “Hopefully, he’ll keep growing and he’ll enjoy his new home.”

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Sarah Larimer

Getty images

3 Wounded In Overnight Pittsburgh Shooting

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PITTSBURGH, PA — (News release / PPD) — The Pittsburgh Bureau of Police is investigating a shooting in Mt. Washington. At approximately 4:26 a.m. Zone 3 Units were dispatched to the 400 block of Norton Street for three people shot.

According to the investigation, a group of individuals were on the corner of Norton and Sandwich Street arguing. A man approached the individuals and fired several shots.

A 24-year-old male was shot in the hip and is in stable condition at Mercy. A 43-year-old male was shot in the stomach. He has been treated and released from Mercy.

A 27-year-old female was grazed by a bullet and transported to Allegheny General Hospital. She is in stable condition.

The investigation is ongoing. A description of the male actor is unavailable. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Violent Crime Unit at 412-323-7161.

Ancestry.com Bust: He left his family. Then started a new one using a dead man’s identity

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Photo source: Pasco County Sheriff's Office

For more than two decades, Terry Jude Symansky appeared to lead an ordinary life in Pasco County, Fla.

He had a wife and a teenage son, owned property and “worked odd jobs,” according to the Tampa Bay Times.

The only problem, police say, was that Terry Jude Symansky wasn’t really Terry Jude Symansky. He was actually an Indiana man named Richard Hoagland who vanished 25 years ago and has been considered dead since 2003, the paper reported.

The lie lasted more than two decades. In the end, a single online search was all it took for the ruse to unravel.

The truth began to surface when a nephew of the real Terry Symansky – who drowned in 1991 at age 33 – started an Ancestry.com family search, according to ABC affiliate WFLA. Knowing that his uncle was dead, the nephew was surprised to find someone with the same name living in central Florida.

“He looks up his real uncle Terry Symansky and realizes that he died in 1991, which the family knew,” Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco told the station. “He then starts scrolling down the page and sees more details that Terry Symanksy was remarried in 1995. He owns property in Pasco County, Florida.”

Fearing that their fake relative might try to harm them, family members waited three years before eventually contacting authorities in April, police told the Tampa Bay Times.

Hoagland, 63, was arrested Wednesday and charged with fraudulent use of personal identification, the paper reported.

How exactly Hoagland came to assume the identity of Terry Symansky – who moved to Florida from Cleveland to work as a commercial fisherman – remains a complicated mystery.

The Tampa Bay Times reported that investigators suspect it occurred as follows:

“Deputies think Hoagland stole Terry Symansky’s identity like this: Hoagland once lived with Terry Symansky’s father in Palm Beach. Hoagland found a copy of Terry Symansky’s 1991 death certificate and used it to obtain a birth certificate from Ohio. With the birth certificate in hand, he then applied by mail for an Alabama driver’s license and used that to obtain a Florida driver’s license. That’s how deputies think Hoagland came to spend more than two decades living in Florida as Terry Symansky.

“As Terry Symansky, he married Mary Hossler Hickman in 1995. The couple lived in Zephyrhills. He also fashioned a medical card to obtain a private pilot’s license as Terry Symansky from the Federal Aviation Administration.”

Before he began the process of assuming a new identity, Hoagland left his old life – which included a wife and four children – behind in Indiana, according to Bay News 9. His former wife in Indiana told police that Hoagland had three businesses related to insurance.

She told investigators that Hoagland told her in the early 1990s that he was wanted by the FBI for embezzling millions of dollars and had no choice but to leave town, according to the Tampa Bay Times. In reality, police told the paper, Hoagland told investigators that he left Indiana to get away from his wife.

Eventually, the paper reported, Hoagland’s wife assumed her husband was dead.

“This is a selfish coward,” Nocco said. “This is a person who has lived his life destroying others.”

Gerry Beyer, a law professor at Texas Tech University who studies identity theft, told the Tampa Bay Times that Hoagland’s alleged actions are unusual because most identity thieves steal people’s names to commit crimes.

He told the paper that the fact that the real Symansky never married or had children made him a “perfect” candidate for identity theft.

And yet, he noted, Hoagland’s ability to maintain the lie for more than two decades was shocking. It was a lie that was probably made easier, Beyer said, because it began before digital records were commonplace.

“You just never know,” Beyer told the paper. “It will all catch up with you.”

Hoagland’s Florida tenants told Bay News 9 that they were shocked that their landlord wasn’t who he said he was.

“We’ve been personal with him quite a bit, and Terry’s the nicest guy anyone could ever meet,” Gregory Yates told the station.

“He’s a really nice guy, and he’s a really good landlord,” Dean Lockwood, another tenant, said. “Never would have known this, couldn’t imagine this was happening.”

Perhaps most damaged by Hoagland’s hoax, police said, was his wife in Florida, who learned about her husband’s alleged crimes only when detectives showed up at her door last week.

“For 20 years, she’s been lied to, so now she doesn’t know what she has to do as far as whether her marriage is even legal – what’s going to happen to all the properties they own, their bank accounts,” Detective Anthony Cardillo told Bay News 9. “The son has the last name Symansky.”

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Peter Holley

Photo source: Pasco County Sheriff's Office
Photo source: Pasco County Sheriff’s Office

Chicago White Sox Suspend Pitcher Chris Sale For “Destroying Team Equipment”

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The Chicago White Sox’s announcement that Chris Sale was being scratched from Saturday’s start for a “non-physical” clubhouse incident sent shock waves around Major League Baseball. With the MLB trade deadline just a week away, how would this affect one of the league’s most valuable pitchers, one whom the Sox were reportedly looking to deal for a big return? Had a deal been reached? How would teams interested in Sale’s services react to the incident?

More immediately, though, what exactly happened in the clubhouse before Saturday’s game against the Tigers? Was Sale just getting into some heated arguments about his pending trade?

Nah. Apparently he just didn’t dig his outfit.

Not a joke: Source says Sale blowup was because he didn’t want to wear throwbacks, so he cut the jerseys up so no one could wear them.

A statement released by General Manager Rick Hahn less than 30 minutes before the scheduled first pitch said the incident was “non-physical in nature” and was being investigated by the club. Multiple reports indicated the incident involved the 1976 throwback uniforms the Sox were supposed to wear Saturday. Sale reportedly found the uniforms uncomfortable and cut them up during batting practice. All of them. The whole team’s.

The Sox ended up emerging from the dugout in their 1983 throwbacks instead.

Sale is 14-3 with a 3.18 ERA this season. He led the AL last year with 274 strikeouts.

(c) 2016, The Washington Post · Nick Eilerson

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Photo source: MLB

New Video Shows Deadly Machete Attack In Germany

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GERMANY — A man wielding a machete killed a woman and injured two others during a rampage in Reutlingen, Germany on Sunday.

The 21-year-old suspect, a Syrian refugee, was later apprehended by police.

Officials said the attack stemmed from an ‘argument’ and terrorism was not suspected.

“Based on the current information there is no evidence to suggest a terrorist attack,” Reutlingen police said.