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Wednesday, June 08, 2016

VA Cut Off Benefits to 4,201 ‘Dead’ Veterans Who Were Still ‘Very Much Alive’

Between 2011 and 2015, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) cut off benefits to 4,201 veterans the department mistakenly presumed were dead.

However, “in each case, the veteran or person receiving VA benefits was very much alive,” according to a statement by Rep. David Jolly (R-FL).

Last December, Jolly asked the VA to report back to him the total number of veterans whose benefits were terminated over the last five years due to presumptive reports of their demise after several of his constituents in the Tampa Bay area complained.

The highest number of erroneous terminations occurred last year, when benefits to 1,025 veterans had to be resumed after they were erroneously listed by the department as deceased, the VA reported.

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Maryland Reforms Asset Forfeiture Laws, But Federal Loophole Added

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has signed a bill into law that significantly reforms asset forfeiture laws. But an amendment approved during the process creates a loophole that could allow law enforcement to work with the feds to skirt the more stringent state law.

Joseph F. Vallario, Jr. (D-Prince George’s County) sponsored House Bill 336 (HB336). Sen. Michael Hough (R-D4) sponsored the companion Senate Bill 161 (SB161). The legislation reforms Maryland law and creates important protections for Marylanders.

According to the Institute for Justice, the new law makes the following changes:
  • Raises the standard of proof to forfeit property to “clear and convincing evidence;”
  • Establishes new reporting requirements for seizures and forfeitures, which oblige agencies to report how they spent forfeiture funds, whether or not criminal charges or convictions accompanied a forfeiture case, and the race and gender of property owners affected by a seizure;
  • Requires a criminal conviction to forfeit an owner’s principal family home;
  • Repeals a provision that allowed money to be forfeited in relation to drug possession. (Forfeiting money related to the unlawful manufacture, distribution or dispensing of controlled substances would still be authorized.);
  • Requires that property owners be given a receipt when their property is seized;
  • Institutes new deadlines for agencies to file forfeiture complaints. (Failing to file would mean the government would have to promptly return seized property);
  • Directs 20 percent of forfeiture proceeds from the general fund to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to fund drug treatment and education programs
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Carry 'F--- Cops' sign, win at least $50,000

Police officers in Westminster, Colorado, a bedroom community northwest of Denver, have been detaining or arresting, repeatedly, a man who carries around a sign with his dramatically low opinion of their department.

But they may want to learn to live with the “F— Cops” message on Eric Brandt’s sign.

Because he’s already gotten a settlement in one lawsuit against the city over the officers’ actions, and now two more are pending.

The newest complaint was filed this week against the city and officers Charles Rush and Ray Esslinger.

“For Plaintiff Eric Brandt, at this moment, it is difficult to differentiate the city of Westminster from a police state,” the complaint starts. “Mr. Brandt walks the sidewalks and streets of Westminster carrying a sign that reads ‘F— Cops.’ He carries this sign to raise awareness of the lawlessness and brutality regularly engaged in by Westminster police officers and officials.
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23 Maryland Parks and Playgrounds Receive Funding



Department of Natural Resources Now Accepting Grant Applications for Next Year

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is now accepting grant applications from cities and towns looking to rehabilitate or enhance local parks and playgrounds in their communities. Funding from the Community Parks and Playground Program can be utilized to restore existing areas and features or to develop and expand new green spaces. Applications for Fiscal Year 2018 funding are due on Aug. 17.

“Creating and improving public access to parks and play areas, especially those in more densely-populated areas, is a top priority for the department and state,” Land Acquisition and Planning Director Emily Wilson said. “That is why we continue to work to expand opportunities for our citizens and children to experience the great outdoors and all that nature has to offer. The program provides a recreational oasis in an otherwise urbanized setting. We encourage municipalities to take advantage of this grant opportunity.”

The department recently awarded 23 grants in Fiscal Year 2017 – totaling $2.5 million – to communities throughout Maryland, from Baltimore City to Trappe. Each grant was evaluated by the department and included in Governor Larry Hogan’s capital budget. Every project will be presented to the Board of Public Works for final approval.

Community Parks and Playground Program grant recipients included:

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Judge blocks order sending Obama lawyers to ethics class

Justice Department lawyers and illegal immigrants won a temporary reprieve Tuesday after Judge Andrew S. Hanen blocked his own order sending the lawyers back to remedial ethics classes, and ordering the government to turn over information on tens of thousands of illegal immigrants who were erroneously granted a three-year deportation amnesty.

Judge Hanen said he’ll hear new arguments in August, and until then he issued a stay.

He also gave the Justice Department a chance to suggest its own punishment for having repeatedly misled the federal court.

The lawyers enraged the judge after they repeatedly told him no part of President Obama’s 2014 deportation amnesty, known as deferred action, was in effect. But the administration had in fact been granting three-year work permits and stays of deportation to some illegal immigrants under one of the 2014 policies that modified a 2012 amnesty already in effect.

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Illegal immigrants kidnapping children to sneak into U.S. as ‘family units,’ feds say

Illegal immigrants are kidnapping children and bringing them across the border, hoping to appear to be families so they can take advantage of lax enforcement policies, the Obama administration told a federal appeals court on Tuesday.

Leon Fresco, a deputy assistant attorney general who handles immigration cases, made the stunning claim as he defended the administration’s policy of detaining illegal immigrant parents and children caught traveling together as they jump the border. After a federal judge last year ordered the families quickly released, Mr. Fresco said it’s served as an enticement for kidnapping.

“When people now know that when I come as a family unit, I won’t be apprehended and detained — we now have people being abducted so that they can be deemed as family units, so that they can avoid detention,” Mr. Fresco told the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

He did not back up that claim in court, and did not respond to a follow-up email seeking comment. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency that handles detention and deportation, declined to comment, citing the ongoing case, while Customs and Border Protection, which guards the border, did not respond to a request for comment.

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Famous designer dumping 1,000 jobs as retail apocalypse continues

In what some are calling the latest victim of the grim economy, Ralph Lauren Corporation is closing at least 50 retail stores and cutting 8 percent of its full-time workforce – about 1,000 employees. CEO Stefan Larsson hopes this will create a leaner business that operates with fewer layers of management.

Centered in New York City, the company – home of the original Polo emblem – designs, markets and sells luxury apparel, footwear, accessories, fragrances and home furnishings under its portfolio of various brands.

As of April 2010, the Ralph Lauren Corporation operated a total of 179 full-price stores, 171 factory stores, and 281 “concessions-based shop-within-shops” – a total of 631 locations worldwide.

The company has been struggling with falling sales and profits attributed to several factors, including failing to keep up with rapidly changing retail trends and new style preferences, and the decline in popularity of brick-and-mortar stores in favor of online shopping. The company’s stocks have fallen nearly 48 percent from its December 2014 high of $182.74
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Former Clinton Aide Tasked With Setting Up Private Server Files Immunity Agreement

The former aide tasked with setting up Hillary Clinton’s private email server during her tenure as secretary of state has confirmed that he has been granted limited immunity by the Justice Department — but he’s also seeking to keep that agreement private.

Bryan Pagliano’s lawyer filed a sealed motion of the deal Tuesday — just barely under a deadline — as the former technology aide argues why he should be able to invoke his Fifth Amendment rights in order to avoid self-incrimination. The Associated Press reported that he has requested a judge keep the conditions of the deal private.

“The DOJ has not authorized a grant of immunity for Mr. Pagliano in connection with any other matter, including this civil case,” Pagliano’s lawyers wrote in a court filing, according to the Associated Press.

Pagliano received limited “use” and “derivative use” immunity from the Justice Department, his lawyers wrote. That type of immunity generally protects witnesses from having statements they make to investigators being used against them in any criminal case — with the exception of lies or false statements — while still enabling the government to prosecute using evidence it obtains independent of that testimony.

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‘They Don’t Give a Damn’: Judge Nap Slams Congress Over Web Browsing Access That Promotes ‘a Police State’

The FBI may soon enjoy the authority to access the internet activity of any citizen without a warrant — a continuation of what Fox News judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano described as a decades-old “assault” on the Fourth Amendment.

Lawmakers are considering proposed legislation this week that would grant the FBI that uninhibited access. Critics, including Google and Facebook, have argued such changes would be a violation of Americans’ privacy. But, in Napolitano’s view, elected officials will argue under the “facade” that it is necessary for the population’s safety.

Ultimately, he concluded Congress will pass the legislation.

“This law will pass because the Congress doesn’t give a damn about whether it’s unconstitutional,” Napolitano charged. “[T]he American people should wake up. … This is a major step toward a police state.”

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House Republicans Unveil Their ‘Better Way’ to Fight Poverty

House Republicans unveiled the first plank of their “A Better Way” platform Tuesday aimed at fighting poverty.

During a press conference at House of Help City of Hope, an anti-poverty organization in Washington, D.C., House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said that policy should reflect the lessons taught by people who are “on the front lines fighting poverty successfully” such as House of Help’s founder Bishop Shirley Holloway.

“The problem we have had in government for too long is that we think the way to fight poverty is to treat its symptoms. And when we treat the symptoms of poverty, we perpetuate poverty. We need to go at the root causes of poverty to break the cycle of poverty,” Ryan said, adding, “We should measure success based on results, outcomes, are our efforts working to actually get people out of poverty instead of measuring success based on input, on effort, are we spending enough money, do we have enough programs, do we have enough people on these programs?”

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‘Chewbacca Mom’ Has Received $420K in Free Stuff Since Her Video Hit — but Some Liberals Are Raising a Major Complaint

Texas mom Candace Payne became an internet sensation last month after she posted a hilarious Facebook live-stream video of herself trying on a Chewbacca mask in a Kohl’s parking lot.

Since Payne’s May 19 post, the video has received 155 million views and more than 3 million shares, making it the most-watched Facebook live-stream ever. And it’s paying off big time.

Payne, better known as “Chewbacca Mom,” has received gifts valued at $420,000, according to KCBS-TV. The nearly half-million dollar sum includes money for travel to appear on talk shows, a vacation at Walt Disney World and Kohl’s merchandise.

But the most extravagant gift awarded to Payne so far comes from Southeastern University in Florida. The private Christian liberal arts college presented Payne and her whole family with full tuition scholarships.

Clearly not everyone is celebrating Chewbacca Mom’s viral success. One of the harshest critiques Payne received came from Daily Dot contributor, Gillian Branstetter.

Branstetter’s piece, “What Chewbacca Mom’s Rise to Fame Tells Us About Race in This Country,” which was cross-posted on MSN, is an argument for why Payne’s sudden rise to internet fame can only be explained by one thing: white privilege.

From the article:
It’s true, free tuition is an oversized prize for such easily begotten fame. It’s also true that the real rewards typically reaped for online success tend to heavily favor insta-celebrities who are white. Content derived from black users of Twitter, Vine, or Snapchat is often sidelined as part of a monolithic Black Twitter.

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WORCESTER COUNTY RECREATION & PARKS OFFERS DAY CAMPS AT FRONTIER TOWN AND SHAD LANDING

 
Worcester County Recreation & Parks will host two off-site day camps again this summer, one at Frontier Town Water Park and a second at Shad Landing State Park. These camps will run from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for youth in grades 4–8.
Frontier Town Day Camp will take place Wednesday, July 6. Kids will have the chance to cool off on water slides, lounge on the lazy river, splash in the pool or just relax playing some mini golf under the summer sun.


Shad Landing Day Camp will take place Thursday, July 7. The day will be packed with fun in the pool, followed by the Parks' Scales & Tales exhibit. The afternoon will be spent canoeing on the Pocomoke River.


For these camps, drop-off and pick-up will take place at each camp location. No transportation will be provided. Campers should bring a change of clothing, sun screen and a packed lunch. The cost is $25 per participant, per camp. Pre-registration is required. Space is limited and available on a first come, first served basis. The registration deadline is Wednesday, June 29.


For more information, contact Myro Small at 410-632-2144, ext. 2512 or msmall@co.worcester.md.us. Visit our website at www.WorcesterRecandParks.org for a registration form. Don't forget to join our mailing list and to like us on facebook.

Music Box: O'Malley marches back to Annapolis

It's always good to have a backup plan when you're in politics for the long haul. A secondary skill could come in handy when the pendulum swings the other way.

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley may have lost his bid for the American presidency (for now), but he'll avoid the unemployment line as he awaits word on Hillary Clinton's pick for running mate by getting a few gigs for his Celtic rock band O'Malley's March.

Not all politicians can play guitar and sing at a high level, but for O'Malley with a ring of righteous talent surrounding him and a few pints of encouragement (Guinness), the agenda at Rams Head On Stage for this Friday night is set (two shows, 6:30 & 9:30pm).

O'Malley's March features harper/piper and storyteller Jared Denhard (who also blows the bone), drummer Jamie Wilson, fiddler Jim Eagan (a protégé of Brendan Mulvihill, and third place finisher in the All Ireland music competition in 1996), multi-instrumentalist Ralph Reinoldi (who also plays mandolin, bouzouki and guitar), with noted accordion player Sean McComiskey and bassist Pete Miller.


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WORCESTER COUNTY RETAINS CURRENT TAX RATES


June 7, the Worcester County Commissioners approved the fiscal year 2016/2017 (FY17) Operating Budget of $188,872,655 in appropriations for the coming fiscal year. This reflects an increase of $6,422,546 or 3.5% more than the FY16 budget while reducing the requested expenditures of $193.9 million by $5 million.

The approved FY17 budget maintains tax rates at their current levels of 83.5¢ per $100 of assessed value for real property taxes and 1.75% for the County’s local income tax rate. Due to increasing assessments, Real Property Tax Revenue is projected to increase by $2,625,098 in FY17.

The Commissioners would like to thank County departments and agencies for maintaining and or reducing operating expenses wherever possible. This fiscally conservative budget maintains funding for valuable public services residents can count on, such as public safety, education, infrastructure and existing social service programs.

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Want to be in a Town of Ocean City commercial?


Want to be in a Town of Ocean City commercial? We are looking for volunteers to participate in our Beach Bus video, which we will begin filming tomorrow, June 9. For those interested in participating, please meet us at 11:45 a.m. in front of the Convention Center bus stop (41st Street & Coastal Highway). The more the merrier! We hope to see you there!

The Habig Cup - 9th Annual Golf Tournament


SPECIAL MUSICAL PEFORMANCE BY FRANK NANNA & THE WW TUNES AT WICOMICO PUBLIC LIBRARIES

Rabies Clinic June 16th In Hebron


Sponsored by: Wicomico County Health Department 
Cost: $10.00 per animal 
CASH ONLY – NO CHECKS ACCEPTED


June 16th at Hebron Volunteer Fire Department 200 South Main Street Hebron, MD 21830 All clinics are from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. 
  • Bring a previous rabies vaccination certificate in order to obtain 3 year shots. Otherwise, 1 year shots will be given. 
  • Pets must be brought by a responsible adult. 
  • Dogs must be secured on a leash. 
  • Cats must be in a secure carrier. 
  • Only dogs and cats will be vaccinated. 
  • Maryland Law requires all dogs and cats four months of age or older to be adequately vaccinated against rabies. 

For more information call 410-546-4446 or visit www.wicomicohealth.org

Six Communities Receive Flooding and Storm Event Funding


Federal, State Program Aids Local Governments
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced today that six communities were selected to receive Community Resiliency Grants to help local governments prepare for weather-related hazards, including flooding, storm events and sea level rise. The new funding will provide both financial and technical assistance to coastal and non-coastal areas throughout Maryland through the CoastSmart Communities and Green Infrastructure Resiliency programs. 


“The funding will help communities prepare for weather-related challenges as well as reduce their vulnerability to hazards,” Chesapeake and Coastal Service Director Matt Fleming said. “Identifying and addressing potential problems before an event will enhance our collective resiliency and response.”

The following projects have been recommended for funding:


  • Coastal Resiliency in Calvert County: The county will develop a Solomons Island Flood Mitigation Plan; maintain required activities for continuing in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Community Rating System; and propose Zoning Ordinance Amendments that would reduce risk and promote flood protection.
  • Coastal Resiliency Study for Cambridge: The city will oversee the completion of a Coastal Resilience Chapter to be integrated and adopted into the comprehensive plan and undergo an evaluation of green and gray replacement approaches of four aging seawalls.
  • Flood Resiliency in Snow Hill: Community Rating System and Public Outreach. The town will apply to Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Community Rating System; create a public outreach campaign to educate property owners about flood risk and living in the floodplain; and verify and establish geodetic benchmarks to accurately determine elevation.
  • Howard County Green Infrastructure Analysis: The county will oversee the completion of a green infrastructure assessment to evaluate the current stormwater flooding problems in historic Ellicott City and determine green infrastructure practices that could be implemented to reduce future flood risk.
  • Moving the Needle, Coastal Adaptation and Implementation Planning in Baltimore City: The city will update and enhance the Disaster Preparedness Project and Plan to incorporate small ‘community district’ risk assessments and develop community-level plans, and implementation guidelines to better focus efforts in local communities most at risk from the impacts of climate change.
  • Smith Island Open Ditch Drainage Assessment: Somerset County will oversee the completion of an assessment to map and evaluate the island’s drainage system. The assessment will identify deficiencies in the system, recommend green infrastructure practices that could improve the system and develop an implementation plan for improvements.
The grant program is made possible by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Coastal Zone Management and Environmental Protection Agency Chesapeake Bay Implementation Grant funding.

Pride Of Baltimore II Leaves Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Pride of Baltimore II is on its way to sea. The city’s floating goodwill ambassador will travel up the East Coast to the Great Lakes.

WJZ was on board for the departure and Alex DeMetrick has more on the Pride’s first voyage in three years.

Tuesday is day one of a four month voyage for the Pride of Baltimore.

It takes muscles and a lot of rope to move 19th century technology. It also helps not to have a fear of heights. But this is exactly what the crew for the Pride of Baltimore II signed up for.

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Curing Our Coast Series Looks At Enforcement As Reporter Goes Undercover With Detectives

OCEAN CITY — Sergeant Shawn Jones of the Ocean City Police Department’s Narcotics Unit calmly adjusts his bullet proof vest as he sits in the passenger seat of an undercover vehicle. He’s carefully watching cars traverse along a backroad of southern Delaware, near Selbyville. He’s looking for junkies, and his eyes are transfixed on one particular road.

“I bet you that dinged up car is going to make the turn,” he says to his colleague, (a young undercover officer who will be referred to as “Detective A” throughout this article upon Jones’ request), who nods in agreement. “Look, there they go.”

The car, a beat up early ‘90’s model jalopy with four passengers in the vehicle, makes the turn onto a dilapidated country road and heads toward what Jones and Detective A describe as one of the busiest open-air drug markets in the region.

Detective A waits a few moments before following the car. He drives swiftly, but with extreme care so as not to look like he’s tailing the car.

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3 teens die in Montgomery County crash

WASHINGTON — On the eve of graduation for Clarksburg High School, three juniors from the school have died following a crash late Tuesday night in Damascus, Maryland.

The teens were headed south when the Ford F-250 truck left the road and struck a tree in the 25300 block of Burnt Hill Road, according to Montgomery County police who responded to the scene shortly after 11:35 p.m. on Tuesday.

The driver, identified by police as Jacob Tyler Dennis, 17, of Boyds, and a passenger, Patrick Andrew Shifflett, 18, of Laytonsville, were pronounced dead at the scene.

An additional passenger, Cary Mauri’ce Greene, 17, of Clarksburg, was transported to Suburban Hospital where he later died from his injuries.

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What Have We Learned, Charlie Brown? - Remembering D-Day

Sykesville named coolest small town

Carroll County is now officially home to the Coolest Small Town in America.

On Monday, Sykesville secured the title of Budget Travel magazine's Coolest Small Town with a massive win in online polling.

Sykesville, which received 44 percent of the votes, trounced second-place finisher Pipestone, Minnesota, which finished with 19 percent of the vote total.

Budget Travel names a Coolest Small Town every year. Winners must have a population of fewer than 10,000 residents and offer a unique atmosphere, complete with shops, food, culture and history, as well as a good location, according to BudgetTravel.com.

In the website's description of Sykesville, it notes the town's farmers market, restaurants and abundance of downtown festivals.

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SPD Calls For Service Week Ending 6-5-16

FDA: People Are Overdosing on Anti-Diarrhea Drugs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal health officials are investigating sometimes-deadly overdoses with common anti-diarrhea drugs, a bizarre manifestation of the nation’s drug abuse problem.

The primary ingredient in prescription Imodium and similar over-the-counter drugs is intended to control diarrhea. But abusers sometimes try to achieve heroin-like highs by taking massive doses, up to 300 milligrams at once, according to cases in the medical literature. Recommended doses range between 8 milligrams and 16 milligrams per day.


The Food and Drug Administration warned doctors and patients Tuesday that the drugs can cause potentially deadly heart problems when taken at higher-than-recommended levels. The agency has received 31 reports of people hospitalized due to the heart problems, including 10 deaths over the last 39 years. The agency’s database is not comprehensive and many drug overdoses are not reported to the government.
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Ellen DeGeneres facing lawsuit over breast joke



A woman from Georgia is suing Ellen DeGeneres after she says she was ridiculed on the comedienne’s talk show.

Titi Pierce, an electronics engineer and real estate agent in Warner Robins, Georgia, is suing the talk show host for defamation, false light invasion of privacy, misappropriation of likeness and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Pierce’s real estate business was featured on a February 22 episode of Ellen during the “What’s Wrong With These Signs” segment. Though Pierce pronounces her first name “Tee Tee,” Ellen read her sign “titty pierce” and made a joke about breasts.

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The heat is on: Most of U.S. likely to have a scorching summer

It's likely to be a sweltering summer for most of the United States, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

In a continuing trend of 2016 being a warmer-than-average year, this summer could be a scorcher for a majority of the U.S., NOAA says.

NOAA's Climate Prediction Center released its summer outlook last week, which predicts above-average temperatures for the next season. Jon Gottschalck, a meteorologist with the Climate Prediction Center (CPC), told Live Science that the warmer temperatures are expected after El Niño, a climate cycle during which a band of warm water in the Pacific Ocean can impact global weather patterns.

"Typically, when you have a transition from El Niño to La Niña, there's generally warmer temperatures across much of the country, so that's one of the primary drivers," Gottschalck said.

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WCSO Monthly Crime Statistics May 2016

Monthly Calls
Salisbury, Allen, Deer Harbour, Fruitland, Fox Chase
Parsonsburg, Delmar
Delmar, Log Cabin Road, Adkins Road
Nanticoke, Waterview, White Haven, Tyaskin
Booth Street, Reservation
Hebron, Mardela Springs, Sharptown
Pittsville, Willards, Powellville


Unsure of your WCSO Sector? Click HERE for the interactive map.

Maryland State Police K9 “Adama” To Get Body Armor

(PIKESVILLE, MD) — Maryland State Police K9 ‘Adama’ will receive a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Adama’s vest is sponsored by Brenda Larsen of Pasadena, MD and will be embroidered with the sentiment “This gift of protection provided by the Larsen’s.” Delivery is expected within eight to ten weeks.



‘Adama’s’ police partner is Trooper First Class Daniel Tebbens, assigned to the Special Tactical Assault Team Element, or STATE Team, the Maryland State Police SWAT Team. “Adama is a Malinois, born in the Czech Republic in July 2012,” TFC Tebbens said. “He was purchased by a vender in PA and then purchased by the Maryland State Police in June 2013. We began training in patrol work later that year. In the two and a half years we have been patrolling together, Adama has assisted in making numerous arrests. In 2015, Adama and I joined the STATE Team. Adama is the first K9 to be assigned to the STATE team in 20 years. He loves working with the other team members doing search warrants and assisting at barricade situations. Adama loves doing his job in every way.”

“We appreciate the generosity of people like the Larsens and those at Vested Interest in K9s Inc., who give their time and resources to increase the safety for these important partners in police work,” Maryland State Police 1/Sgt. Joe Catalano, commander of the Maryland State Police K9 Division. “Our dogs are integral to our success and our increased ability to protect this valuable asset helps ensure we are able to continue to effectively use our K9 resources in our work to keep Marylanders safe.”

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c (3) charity located in East Taunton, MA whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The non-profit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provided over 1,700 protective vests, in 49 states, through private and corporate donations, at a cost of over 1.6 million dollars. All vests are custom made in the USA by Armor Express in Central Lake, MI.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K9 is $1,050. Each vest has a value between $1,795 – $2,234, a five-year warranty and an average weight of 4-5 lbs. There are an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States. For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718.

85 Ohio State veterinary students accused of test cheating

A cheating conspiracy at the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine has 85 students facing discipline that could range from a warning to dismissal from the college, which was ranked fifth among the nation’s 28 vet schools last year by U.S. News and World Report.

An investigation was launched in February after someone alleged that students had worked out a way to share answers on online take-home tests, according to university officials. There are about 650 students in Ohio State’s four-year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program.

Officials would not name the courses involved or discuss the discipline in detail, citing federal student-privacy laws, but a written statement noted that penalties for unauthorized collaboration can range from a warning to dismissal and also include receiving a zero on the exam or quiz in question.

The college’s Student Judiciary Committee imposed the punishments, and its rulings were upheld by the college’s Executive Committee. Some of the students are appealing their punishments to the office of the university provost.

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Deaf woman fatally struck by train while walking on tracks

SMITHSBURG, Md. (AP) — Police say a deaf woman walking on the railroad tracks was fatally struck by an oncoming freight train in the western Maryland town of Smithsburg.

Washington County Sheriff’s Detective Howard Ward said Tuesday that 51-year-old Kathy Lynn Williams of Smithsburg apparently didn’t see the CSX train or hear several warning blasts from its horn.

He says Williams was struck about 1 p.m. Monday while walking down the middle of the tracks toward the northbound train.

Ward says a video recording from the CSX locomotive shows the woman looking straight down as she walked.

Source

OCPD Advising Business Owners of Counterfeit Currency Case

OCEAN CITY, MD – : The Ocean City Police Department is currently investigating a counterfeit currency case involving bills marked for cinematic use, or prop currency. On Saturday, June 4, 2016, Ocean City police arrested two suspects who had attempted to pass two counterfeit $100 bills at a local business. Both counterfeit bills had the same serial number, PR 10008679 P, and were marked with the phrase, “For Motion Picture Use Only.”

Earlier in the evening on the same date, there was an additional unrelated case involving a drug distribution suspect, who was in possession of six counterfeit $100 bills. The serial number for all six counterfeit bills was CP 01105192 L. These counterfeit bills also had the same “For Motion Picture Use Only” marking as the two counterfeit bills mentioned above. Since it is only illegal to attempt to pass prop currency such as this, not possess it, this individual was not charged in regards to the bills.

Ocean City police are encouraging business owners and employees to closely examine currency by looking carefully at the money being exchanged and being aware of the counterfeit indicators built in to the bill. Prop currency sharing the same denomination and serial numbers have been passed in at least three other cases on the Maryland Eastern Shore and there have been multiple cases throughout the United States.

Any business owner that may have a similar case or further information regarding the passing of these counterfeit $100 bills, please contact Detective Carl Perry at crperry@oceancitymd.gov.

DC Council OKs $15-an-hour minimum wage

WASHINGTON — The D.C. Council has approved a $15-an-hour minimum wage bill.

Mayor Muriel Bowser has promised to sign the measure, which will raise the wage by 2020. In a ceremonial news conference, the mayor and council announced they have come to an agreement on a $15 wage. The council will vote this afternoon.

The council formally voted on the bill Tuesday afternoon.

Minimum wage workers in the District currently make $10.50. That rate will increase to $11.50 in July under legislation signed in 2014 by Bowser’s predecessor, Vincent Gray.

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Mom Finds 'Drugs' In teens Room

 

Gunfire erupts among family at funeral repast for homicide victim in West Baltimore church, police say

A funeral repast for Antonio Addison, a 22-year-old man gunned down in West Baltimore last month, turned violent on Tuesday afternoon when Addison's brother allegedly pulled out a gun and shot their father, according to Baltimore Police.

The 47-year-old father suffered non-fatal injuries to the abdomen, and the 26-year-old son was taken into custody, police said.

A preliminary investigation suggested the father and son had gotten into an argument about the content of an obituary that had been written for Addison, police said. The shooting occurred in a vestibule area inside the New Song Worship & Arts Center, located in the 1600 block of N. Calhoun Street in the city's Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood, police said.

"I really can't even describe how unnecessary and senseless this situation is," said T.J. Smith, a police spokesman.

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Third Officer Charged In Gray Case Files Suit Against Mosby

An officer charged in the death of a young black man whose neck was broken in the back of a police wagon has filed a federal defamation lawsuit against Baltimore's top prosecutor.

Lt. Brian Rice sued State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby and Maj. Sam Cogen of the sheriff's office for defamation of character, false imprisonment and violation of rights.

In the lawsuit, Rice cited Mosby's public comments during her May 1 press conference when she announced charges against six officers, including statements about the legality of the knife found on Freddie Gray. The officers maintain the knife was unlawful. Mosby said it was legal.

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Baltimore Businesses Affected By Riots Receive Help From State

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Nearly 50 businesses affected by last year’s riots are now getting help from the state.

Mike Schuh reports the money will be used to make their businesses look better and more secure.

The riots are a time in Baltimore history few want to revisit but businessmen like Mike Evans can’t help but think about it.

“With the different trials coming up, there’s a definite possibility of something like this happening again,” Evans said.

For 30 years, his family has run a framing shop downtown. Businesses next door had their security doors ripped off and looted.

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NFL confirms Twitter account hacked after tweet erroneously reports Goodell's death

In a quickly deleted tweet the official NFL Twitter account briefly reported that Commissioner Roger Goodell passed away.

The tweet, posted Tuesday afternoon, was followed by two others, which were also quickly removed.

The second and third tweets read; "Oi, I said Roger Goodell has died. Don't delete that tweet" and "OK, OK, you amateur detectives win. Good job."

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Thunderbirds Still In Question For OC Air Show

Today marks the Team’s first opportunity to return to fly after our recent stand down. While we begin practicing again, our show season is still on hold. The Thunderbirds’ participation in this weekend’s North Kingstown, RI airshow is cancelled. The Team’s participation in the Ocean City, MD airshow is yet to be determined.

Judge, law firm bringing Trump U case both tied to La Raza

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Stanford University sex attack sparks outrage

Los Angeles (AFP) – The father of a Stanford University student convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman has come under fire for dismissing the crime as “20 minutes of action.”

The judge who oversaw the case in California, Aaron Persky, has also sparked outrage for sentencing Brock Allen Turner to six months in prison and probation for the assault, saying that he feared a stiffer jail term would have “a severe impact” on Turner.

The 20-year-old student from Ohio had faced up to 14 years in prison for the January 2015 assault but is now expected to serve only three months of his six-month sentence in a county jail.

His father said in a public statement at the sentencing hearing last week that Turner did not deserve to go to jail.

“(Brock) will never be his happy go lucky self with that easy going personality and welcoming smile,” Dan Turner told the court in his statement made public on Monday. “His life will never be the one that he dreamed about and worked so hard to achieve.

“That is a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action out of his 20 plus years of life.”

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Texas High School Says No to Honors Recognition Because of Feelings

High school graduation is a time for students to celebrate their accomplishments and hard work. It has been a tradition among students to showcase their academic honors and achievements with decorated stoles and cords.

Plano Senior High School in Texas has broken with tradition by prohibiting students from wearing National Honor Society stoles, according to news reports. The society’s mission is to honor outstanding students and prepare them for leadership and lifelong success.

Garrett Frederick, a Plano graduate and member of NHS, learned he would not be allowed to wear his stole as he walked across the stage, 12 News reported. Frederick earned the stole by maintaining a high GPA and completing 20 hours of community service each semester.

“I’m not just an honor student, I’m an NHS student. I worked hard. I put in the hours,” Frederick toldWFAA.com.

Frederick’s mom, KellyAnn Frederick, contacted the school but said an NHS sponsor “claimed school administrators want everyone to feel included in graduation and not single students out.”

KellyAnn said she had not been an NHS member in high school but felt “OK” when her friends wore their stole.

“They deserve it. They worked hard for it. If you choose not to work that hard, then that’s okay,” KellyAnn told reporters.

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US Pays Highest Cost for Cancer Meds

The United States pays the highest prices in the world for generic and brand-name cancer drugs, a new study has found.

However, as the world's wealthiest nation, the United States is better able to pay for those pricey drugs than poorer countries with somewhat lower medication prices, added study lead author Dr. Daniel Goldstein.

People in China and India are much less able to afford cancer drugs than Americans, he said, even though U.S. monthly drug prices are about three to six times higher in the United States.

That doesn't mean America came out on top in overall drug affordability, however. Developed nations such as Australia, England and Israel had the "best deal" in the world on cancer drugs, thanks to government programs that regulate drug pricing, the study found.

"America is the wealthiest nation, but its drug prices are significantly higher -- so much so that cancer medications are less affordable in the U.S. than developed countries like England or Australia," said Goldstein, who's a senior medical oncologist at Rabin Medical Center in Petach Tkvah, Israel.

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Buchanan: Trump Is Right to Question Judge's Motives

Before the lynching of The Donald proceeds, what exactly was it he said about that Hispanic judge?

Stated succinctly, Donald Trump said U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over a class-action suit against Trump University, is sticking it to him.

And the judge's bias is likely rooted in the fact that he is of Mexican descent.

Can there be any defense of a statement so horrific?

Just this. First, Trump has a perfect right to be angry about the judge's rulings and to question his motives. Second, there are grounds for believing Trump is right.

On May 27, Curiel, at the request of The Washington Post, made public plaintiff accusations against Trump University — that the whole thing was a scam. The Post, which Bob Woodward tells us has 20 reporters digging for dirt in Trump's past, had a field day.

And who is Curiel?

An appointee of President Obama, he has for years been associated with the La Raza Lawyers Association of San Diego, which supports pro-illegal immigrant organizations.

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Senators Probe Five Drugmakers on Price of Overdose Antidote

U.S. senators want five drugmakers to account for increases in the price of a drug that's used to reverse the effects of prescription and illegal opioids, as the number of Americans overdosing on painkillers and heroin has skyrocketed in recent years.

Senators Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, and Claire McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat, wrote to Pfizer Inc., Mylan NV, Amphastar Pharmaceuticals Inc., Adapt Pharma Inc. and Kaleo Inc., asking them to explain price changes to the drug, naloxone.

They cited a report in Politico that at least one version of the drug has risen in price by as much as 17-fold in the last two years. Collins is the chairwoman of the Senate Special Committee on Aging and McCaskill is the panel's top Democrat.

"As we work to address a complex public health crisis, it is important that naloxone, a potentially lifesaving tool, be accessible," the senators wrote in a letter dated June 3.

Adapt hasn't raised its price since its version was approved last year, said Thom Duddy, a spokesman. Amphastar said it offers nine states rebates on the drug, and it and Pfizer both said they would cooperate with the inquiry, as did Pfizer. Kaleo and Mylan didn't immediately have a comment on the senators' questions.

The senators also want to know what the companies are doing to preserve access to the drug, which hospitals have said they've had trouble obtaining.

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Judge Linked to Group that Calls for Boycott of Trump’s Businesses

Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is overseeing a fraud case against Trump University, is reportedly a member of the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, which is affiliated with the Hispanic National Bar Association.

The Hispanic National Bar Association sent out a press release last summer after Donald Trump, who is now the presumptive Republican nominee, announced he was running for president and created a controversy by discussing illegal immigration and crime during his announcement speech.

The press release stated the organization’s mission to target Trump’s “business interests,” according to the Conservative Treehouse.

“By his recent derogatory remarks about Mexican immigrants, Donald Trump’s disrespect of such a large segment of the population of America is not only unbelievable but outright wrong,” the press release states. “His comment that Mexico only sends rapists and criminals to the United States reveals a racist nature that cannot and will not go unnoticed by the Hispanic National Bar Association nor the Latino community.”

The press release adds this:

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