web analytics
a

Facebook

Twitter

Copyright 2015 Libero Themes.
All Rights Reserved.

8:30 - 6:00

Our Office Hours Mon. - Fri.

703-406-7616

Call For Free 15/M Consultation

Facebook

Twitter

Search
Menu
Westlake Legal Group > article (Page 240)

Rikers Island guards charged with taking thousands of dollars in bribes to smuggle in drugs

Westlake Legal Group rikersisland126 Rikers Island guards charged with taking thousands of dollars in bribes to smuggle in drugs Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/crime/corruption fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox news fnc/us fnc article 7ef0d4fa-6bc7-590d-bf80-ceafc2b251f6

Six New York City correctional officers and 15 others were charged with taking thousands of dollars in bribes to smuggle drugs to inmates at Rikers Island jail complex, the Justice Department announced Tuesday.

An investigation began in early 2019 by the FBI and the NYC Department of Investigation revealed how corrections officers and others allegedly smuggled in narcotics such as marijuana and K2  (a synthetic cannabinoid), along with an unauthorized smartphone.

In total, 21 were charged — six correctional officers, five inmates and seven other individuals. Three others are still being sought. All 21 are charged with conspiring to bribe corrections officers.

DE BLASIO SAYS NYC IS ‘ON THE OFFENSIVE’ TO TACKLE HOMELESSNESS IN BIG APPLE

Investigators said they found a dozen clear plastic bags of marijuana after searching one inmate involved in the scandal.

“Contraband smuggling enterprises have long plagued City jail facilities. The arrests today are another example of a pattern in which inmates and outside conspirators identify correction officers vulnerable to corruption, and use them to carry drugs and other illegal substances into the jails,” stated DOI Commissioner Margaret Garnett.

As part of the investigation, law enforcement officers conducted surveillance and listened to recorded calls in which defendants used coded language to talk about the drugs. For example, “Oakland Raider jerseys” was code for marijuana, according to one prosecutor.

“I’m trying to get, um four ‘Oakland Raider jerseys’ [code for marijuana].  “…’Got Pink Panties’ [code for correctional officer] on the line right now, you heard? “ one inmate said to a co-conspirator in a recorded phone conversation. “Gangsta. You just gotta make it to the ‘Jungle’ [code for Brooklyn] to drop it off to them and, more or less, we lit from there.”

The corrections officers and others were expected to appear in court Tuesday afternoon.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

In October, New York City lawmakers voted to close Rikers Island, one of the world’s largest jails. By 2026 the complex will be closed and replaced with four smaller jails throughout the city. The new facilities are meant to be more modern and humane and closer to the city’s courthouses.

Westlake Legal Group rikersisland126 Rikers Island guards charged with taking thousands of dollars in bribes to smuggle in drugs Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/crime/corruption fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox news fnc/us fnc article 7ef0d4fa-6bc7-590d-bf80-ceafc2b251f6   Westlake Legal Group rikersisland126 Rikers Island guards charged with taking thousands of dollars in bribes to smuggle in drugs Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/crime/corruption fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox news fnc/us fnc article 7ef0d4fa-6bc7-590d-bf80-ceafc2b251f6

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Astros trolled by Staten Island Yankees with trash can giveaway

Westlake Legal Group Staten-Island-Yankees-Trash-Can Astros trolled by Staten Island Yankees with trash can giveaway Nick Givas fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/sports/mlb/new-york-yankees fox-news/sports/mlb/houston-astros fox-news/sports/mlb fox news fnc/sports fnc e9f2b3fe-8512-5979-93c7-b41dde7be288 article

Following disciplinary action against the Houston Astros from Major League Baseball for their involvement in a cheating scandal, the Staten Island Yankees mocked the franchise on Tuesday by announcing a free mini trashcan giveaway, at one of their upcoming regular-season games.

The New York Yankees‘ minor league affiliate tweeted about the giveaway after news broke that Astros’ general manager Jeff Luhnow and team manager A.J. Hinch, were both dismissed for their role in stealing signs and signals from their opponents, during their 2017 World Series run.

Part of the system had Astros players watch the centerfield camera to decipher the opposing team’s communications, before loudly banging on a trash can in the dugout with a bat to transmit the upcoming pitch type to the batter.

“NEW GIVEAWAY ALERT,” the tweet read. “Mini Trash Can Giveaway on Thursday, September 3rd. Tickets for this game are on sale early for this week only! To purchase click the link or call us at 718-720-9265.”

ASTROS PUNISHMENT IN SIGN-STEALING SCANDAL SENDS SHOCKWAVES THROUGHOUT BASEBALL

The league had already suspended both Hinch and Luhnow from baseball for one year, prior to their termination. Luhnow denied any knowledge of the sign-stealing scheme and claimed that he was “not a cheater.”

Luhnow did, however, apologize for the “shame and embarrassment” the incident brought to the organization, according to a statement obtained by Fox News.

“I accept responsibility for rules violations that occurred on my watch as President of Baseball Operations and General Manager of the Astros. I apologize to the Astros organization, Astros fans, and the Houston community for the shame and embarrassment this has caused. I am deeply grateful to Jim Crane for the opportunity to lead baseball operations,” Luhnow’s statement read.

“I am not a cheater. Anybody who has worked closely with me during my 32-year career inside and outside baseball can attest to my integrity,” the statement continued. “I did not know rules were being broken. As the Commissioner set out in his statement, I did not personally direct, oversee or engage in any misconduct: The sign-stealing initiative was not planned or directed by baseball management; the trash-can banging was driven and executed by players, and the video decoding of signs originated and was executed by lower-level employees working with the bench coach. I am deeply upset that I wasn’t informed of any misconduct because I would have stopped it.”

In addition to the suspensions, Houston has lost its first- and second-round draft picks for the 2020 and 2021 drafts and will be fined $5 million, according to The Athletic.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

Former bench coach turned Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora could also face harsh disciplinary action, for allegedly helping set up the sign-stealing scheme, but the MLB has yet to announce any official punishment.

During their 2017 championship run, the Astros faced the Yankees in the ALCS and defeated them in seven games, winning each matchup at home. They went on to defeat the Dodgers in the World Series, in seven games.

Fox News’ Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report 

Westlake Legal Group Staten-Island-Yankees-Trash-Can Astros trolled by Staten Island Yankees with trash can giveaway Nick Givas fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/sports/mlb/new-york-yankees fox-news/sports/mlb/houston-astros fox-news/sports/mlb fox news fnc/sports fnc e9f2b3fe-8512-5979-93c7-b41dde7be288 article   Westlake Legal Group Staten-Island-Yankees-Trash-Can Astros trolled by Staten Island Yankees with trash can giveaway Nick Givas fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/sports/mlb/new-york-yankees fox-news/sports/mlb/houston-astros fox-news/sports/mlb fox news fnc/sports fnc e9f2b3fe-8512-5979-93c7-b41dde7be288 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Prince Harry hasn’t reunited with Meghan Markle, son Archie in Canada yet — Here’s why

Westlake Legal Group Meghan-Markle-prince-harry-timeline-photo Prince Harry hasn't reunited with Meghan Markle, son Archie in Canada yet — Here's why Nate Day fox-news/world/personalities/queen fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 5185c707-d200-59e1-941e-152de138c238

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have yet to reunite following Harry’s meeting with his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, on Monday.

The meeting, dubbed the “Sandringham Summit,” was an opportunity for the Queen, Harry and other members of the royal family to reportedly “talk things through” following Harry and Meghan’s announcement that they plan to take a “step back” from their royal duties.

Markle, 38, was not present for the meeting, but it was reported that she would have potentially joined by phone from Canada, where she traveled after making the historic announcement to reunite with 8-month-old son Archie, whom she shares with Harry, 35.

KATE MIDDLETON ‘WILL HAVE TO REPRESENT THE FACE OF BRITAIN’S FUTURE’ FOLLOWING ‘MEGXIT,’ EXPERTS SAY

Harry and Meghan have yet to reunite following the family meeting, but it appears to be the prince’s schedule that’s holding him back.

Harry is set to host the Rugby League World Cup 2021 draws for the men’s, women’s and wheelchair tournaments at Buckingham Palace on Thursday, according to People magazine. Harry has been a member of the Rugby Football League since 2016, when he took over his grandmother’s spot.

HUGH GRANT WEIGHS IN ON MEGXIT: ‘I’M RATHER ON HARRY’S SIDE’

It is likely that following the event, Harry will travel to Canada, where he and his family will spend some time during an upcoming “period of transition,” per a statement from the Queen.

“Harry and Meghan have made clear that they do not want to be reliant on public funds in their new lives,” the Queen said. “It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the U.K.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

The statement also explains that the royal family is “entirely supportive” of Harry and Meghan and maintains that they will remain “a valued part of” the royal family.

Westlake Legal Group Meghan-Markle-prince-harry-timeline-photo Prince Harry hasn't reunited with Meghan Markle, son Archie in Canada yet — Here's why Nate Day fox-news/world/personalities/queen fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 5185c707-d200-59e1-941e-152de138c238   Westlake Legal Group Meghan-Markle-prince-harry-timeline-photo Prince Harry hasn't reunited with Meghan Markle, son Archie in Canada yet — Here's why Nate Day fox-news/world/personalities/queen fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 5185c707-d200-59e1-941e-152de138c238

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows

AUSTIN, Texas — The number of police officers who died by suicide in 2019 was more than double the number killed in the line of duty, according to a study — and one organization is aiming to change the startling statistic with a broader peer networking program.

The Blue H.E.L.P. study showed 228 officers died by suicide, while 132 officers died in the line of duty in 2019. Texas ranked third with 19 suicides in 2019, behind New York with 23 and California with 21. The organization has aimed to call attention to mental-health concerns among law enforcement, with H.E.L.P. standing for “Honor. Educate. Lead. Prevent.”

“As a police officer, you never really leave your battlefield, you are constantly faced with the chronic stress of your work environment,” Caruth Police Institute Interim Executive Director BJ Wagner said.

Westlake Legal Group CHART_BAR_2019_POLICE_SUICIDE_RATES Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows Hunter Davis fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/health/mental-health fox news fnc/us fnc article 8838b13a-6c93-59c2-bf95-804a651e6323

According to Blue H.E.L.P. and the Caruth Police Institute, 228 officers died by suicide in 2019, more than double the number of officers killed in the line of duty.

Wagner said it’s because of the rise in police office suicides that the institute has been looking to put together the Texas First Responders Peer Networking Program, which ideally would eliminate officer suicides in the Lone Star State.

“It would be a statewide initiative saying that law enforcement suicide is no longer an acceptable statistic in Texas, we want to end it,” Wagner said.

The institute has been looking to get secure from the state in order to set up six hubs across the state that would provide a “battle buddy” to each officer struggling with mental, emotional or physical health.

As of now, programs like this have been offered only on a smaller scale, like at the Austin Police Department.

Westlake Legal Group Austin-Police-Department Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows Hunter Davis fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/health/mental-health fox news fnc/us fnc article 8838b13a-6c93-59c2-bf95-804a651e6323

The Austin Police Department has a unit dedicated to helping the mental and emotional health of police officers. (Hunter Davis/Fox News)

“What we are trying to do is educate our peers,” Joe Brown with the Austin Police Department Peer Networking Unit said. “Our job is to foster relationships and build rapport so they feel comfortable to reach out to us.”

The Austin Peer Networking Unit has been active since 2006, helping any officer in or outside the department cope with the trauma of the job.

“I think as a profession, we have done a very bad job of reaching out for help and getting the help that we need in dealing with a career of trauma,” Brown said. “What we do is tell our officers, if they are in a time of need or see someone struggling, then they can reach out to us.”

The unit also taught a suicide-prevention class in 2019, educating the department on potential warning signs and some of the resources available to people in crisis and those who know someone in crisis.

“You work long hours and you deal with a variety of calls in one shift, and it’s something that officers have to deal with on an everyday basis, which is why we try to educate our peers and say, ‘Hey, you are going to experience some traumatic events and you’re going to have a biological reaction to that,’” Brown said.

The unit has boasted 100-percent success over the last 13 years, losing no officers to suicide. Its members said a program on a state level would only help them with their mission to save their brothers and sisters in blue. “We are a large entity and if you are looking at these smaller ones with eight people or 10 people, it is taught to have what we do, which is why I think it would be helpful in those areas,” Sgt. Tim Kresta said.

The program could assist people like Chris Jaramillo, a military veteran whose father, Officer Albert Mendoza-Jaramillo, died of suicide in 1992. He was an officer with the Austin Police Department for 10 years before he took his own life.

“He committed suicide on December 13, 1992. There is a lot of speculation as to why he did it, substance abuse and trauma from his job that he wasn’t dealing with,” his son said. “It was shock and the week prior to him committing suicide, he made me promise that if anything ever happened to him, I wouldn’t cry.”

Chris Jaramillo was a United States Marine and said he’s gone through his own battles with substance abuse after a battle buddy of his died in uniform.

“It was an incident in Afghanistan. We were on a dismounted patrol and we were sweeping for IEDs, and a good buddy of mine triggered an IED that caused a traumatic brain injury and killed him in the process,” Jaramillo said.

The Marine veteran was honored with a Purple Heart for his service and said, because of his own trauma, he’s now able to understand what his father may have been going through 28 years ago.

“Veterans experience similar traumas to police officers, witnessing scenes that aren’t pleasant. As a veteran, I didn’t want to ask for help because it wasn’t the thing to do, because you got the stigma of being labeled with a mental illness and just like police officers, it wasn’t something you bring up,” Jaramillo said. “You drink, you go hang out with your buddies and that is how you deal with it.”

The veteran said, although he felt similar to what he believed his dad felt, he chose to get help.

“It is heartbreaking because I was in that same place where he was. And, just because he did it and I witnessed it and experienced it, but the fact that I asked for help and things got better was heartbreaking, because it could have helped him too,” Jaramillo recalled.

He said it’s because of this understanding that he believed a program like the Texas First Responders Peer Networking Program would be helpful.

“A peer is going to be around you more than a doctor or whatever, and they are going to see those hidden secrets. And, those secrets need to be brought to light by having a peer say, ‘Hey, you need help,’ or, ‘Hey, I got a buddy that needs help,’ and take that to the peer network to get the officer the help they need,” Jaramillo said. “It’s a big thing to have a good support system so that way, you know it would have helped him out  because he would have been able to get to that doctor that may have changed his mind.”

MISSISSIPPI MOM WORRIED FOR SON’S SAFETY AFTER DEADLY PRISON RIOTS

Jaramillo added that any officer or anyone else struggling with mental or emotional health should know that someone else was looking out.

“The strongest thing someone can do is ask for help and say, ‘Hey, I cannot do this on my own. It hurts [losing someone] so asking for help, I’ll keep your loved ones from experiencing the pain,” Jaramillo said.

The Caruth Police Institute has aimed to have the program partially operational by December and then fully operational by the summer of 2021, but it’s all dependent on funding.

Westlake Legal Group MAP_TX_irving_austin_lubbock_rockport_elpaso_tyler Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows Hunter Davis fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/health/mental-health fox news fnc/us fnc article 8838b13a-6c93-59c2-bf95-804a651e6323

The Caruth Police Institute is aiming to place six peer networking hubs across the Lone Star State. (Fox News)

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“Across the last two legislative sessions, Texas has really been a model across the country on how to create state and local partnerships to provide mental help services across the region, across the state, and allowing committees to design what works well by providing match dollars with the state,” Wagner said. “We are looking toward some of those opportunities to fund the Texas First Responders Peer Network, but we are also looking at other grants and philanthropic opportunities to help launch this network.”

The Caruth Police Institute, a partnership between Dallas police and the University of North Texas at Dallas, is hoping to place 6 different hubs across Texas: in Irving, Austin, El Paso, Lubbock, Tyler and Rockport.

Westlake Legal Group Sequence-03.00_00_30_52.Still002 Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows Hunter Davis fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/health/mental-health fox news fnc/us fnc article 8838b13a-6c93-59c2-bf95-804a651e6323   Westlake Legal Group Sequence-03.00_00_30_52.Still002 Police officer suicide rate more than doubles line-of-duty deaths in 2019, study shows Hunter Davis fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/health/mental-health fox news fnc/us fnc article 8838b13a-6c93-59c2-bf95-804a651e6323

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Meghan Markle didn’t call into royal family summit with the Queen because it wasn’t ‘necessary’

Westlake Legal Group meghan-markle-africa-tour-image Meghan Markle didn't call into royal family summit with the Queen because it wasn't 'necessary' Julius Young fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc ce209258-c37f-5880-8073-04e4b82eb5b9 article

Despite earlier reports, Meghan Markle did not join Monday’s historic royal summit with the family, who were discussing her and Prince Harry‘s future, according to a new statement from Buckingham Palace.

It was initially reported that the Duchess of Sussex, 38, would phone into the meeting with Harry, his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II, father Prince Charles, and brother Prince William, however, the Sussexes decided that ultimately “it wasn’t necessary” for Meghan to join.

“In the end, The Sussexes decided that it wasn’t necessary for The Duchess to join,” the palace said in a statement (via People magazine).

QUEEN ISSUES STATEMENT ON MEGHAN MARKLE, PRINCE HARRY AFTER FAMILY TALKS, AGREES TO PART-TIME MOVE TO CANADA

Harry, 35, is expected to reunite with Meghan and the couple’s son, Archie, in Canada later this week, according to a report from the Evening Standard.

MEGHAN MARKLE, PRINCE HARRY’S ‘MEGXIT’: IS QUEEN ELIZABETH PARTLY TO BLAME FOR ROYAL CRISIS?

Markle had reportedly been taking solace in a mansion owned by Canadian billionaire Frank Giustra, who has political ties to the Clinton family.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Less than a week ago, Harry and Meghan shared on Instagram that they planned to “step back as ‘senior’ members of the royal family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen.”

The announcement also stated that they plan on splitting their time between the UK and North America.

Buckingham Palace did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment

Westlake Legal Group meghan-markle-africa-tour-image Meghan Markle didn't call into royal family summit with the Queen because it wasn't 'necessary' Julius Young fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc ce209258-c37f-5880-8073-04e4b82eb5b9 article   Westlake Legal Group meghan-markle-africa-tour-image Meghan Markle didn't call into royal family summit with the Queen because it wasn't 'necessary' Julius Young fox-news/world/personalities/british-royals fox-news/topic/royals fox-news/person/prince-harry fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news/meghan-markle fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc ce209258-c37f-5880-8073-04e4b82eb5b9 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Stephen King faces backlash for saying ‘quality’ should matter in Oscar nominees over ‘diversity’

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a

Legendary horror author Stephen King is facing backlash on Tuesday for his commentary on this year’s Oscar nominations, stressing that the “quality” of the art should matter over “diversity.”

On Monday, the Oscar nominations were revealed, and the Academy was slammed for both not having any female nominees for Best Director and for the numerous snubs of people of color among the other categories.

King weighed in on the controversy on Twitter.

“As a writer, I am allowed to nominate in just 3 categories: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Screenplay. For me, the diversity issue — as it applies to individual actors and directors, anyway — did not come up. That said… I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong,” King wrote.

ALEC BALDWIN BLASTS TRUMP SUPPORTERS, SAYING THEY’VE CAUSED ‘COLOSSAL DESTRUCTION’ TO AMERICA

The “Shining” mastermind was criticized on social media. But many of his critics offered polite responses to the famed writer.

“With the utmost respect, I think this is quite a bit unfair. When films created by people of color, irrespective of quality, constantly get overlooked by institutions that are predominately comprised of white men, there is an implicit bias at work here,” Zora senior editor Morgan Jerkins said.

“Sir, respectfully saying you as a white man can’t really say that. You had more advantages and opportunities than a person of color would have. They have been wrongfully held back in so many ways just because of their color skin, Twitter user David Weissman told King.

“With all due respect, I’m afraid that a meritocracy could work only if the game weren’t rigged,” author Laura Lippman said.

MICHAEL MOORE HITS TRUMP OVER QASSEM SOLEIMANI KILLING: AMERICANS HAVEN’T EVEN HEARD OF HIM

King later attempted to explain his tweets.

“The most important thing we can do as artists and creative people is make sure everyone has the same fair shot, regardless of sex, color or orientation. Right now such people are badly under-represented, and not only in the arts,” King said. “You can’t win awards if you’re shut out of the game.”

Among the four acting categories, the only person of color nominated was Cynthia Erivo, who earned a nod for her lead performance as Harriet Tubman in the biopic “Harriet.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Critics pointed to several acting snubs including Jennifer Lopez in “Hustlers,” Lupita Nyong’o in “Us,” Awkwafina in “The Farewell” and Eddie Murphy in “Dolemite Is My Name” as those who would have improved the diversity among the Oscar nominees.

There was also a big outcry for the snubs among female directors, including Greta Gerwig of “Little Women” and Lulu Wang of “The Farewell,” who were shut out of the Best Director race by five male directors.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Stephen King faces backlash for saying ‘quality’ should matter in Oscar nominees over ‘diversity’

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a

Legendary horror author Stephen King is facing backlash on Tuesday for his commentary on this year’s Oscar nominations, stressing that the “quality” of the art should matter over “diversity.”

On Monday, the Oscar nominations were revealed, and the Academy was slammed for both not having any female nominees for Best Director and for the numerous snubs of people of color among the other categories.

King weighed in on the controversy on Twitter.

“As a writer, I am allowed to nominate in just 3 categories: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Original Screenplay. For me, the diversity issue — as it applies to individual actors and directors, anyway — did not come up. That said… I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong,” King wrote.

ALEC BALDWIN BLASTS TRUMP SUPPORTERS, SAYING THEY’VE CAUSED ‘COLOSSAL DESTRUCTION’ TO AMERICA

The “Shining” mastermind was criticized on social media. But many of his critics offered polite responses to the famed writer.

“With the utmost respect, I think this is quite a bit unfair. When films created by people of color, irrespective of quality, constantly get overlooked by institutions that are predominately comprised of white men, there is an implicit bias at work here,” Zora senior editor Morgan Jerkins said.

“Sir, respectfully saying you as a white man can’t really say that. You had more advantages and opportunities than a person of color would have. They have been wrongfully held back in so many ways just because of their color skin, Twitter user David Weissman told King.

“With all due respect, I’m afraid that a meritocracy could work only if the game weren’t rigged,” author Laura Lippman said.

MICHAEL MOORE HITS TRUMP OVER QASSEM SOLEIMANI KILLING: AMERICANS HAVEN’T EVEN HEARD OF HIM

King later attempted to explain his tweets.

“The most important thing we can do as artists and creative people is make sure everyone has the same fair shot, regardless of sex, color or orientation. Right now such people are badly under-represented, and not only in the arts,” King said. “You can’t win awards if you’re shut out of the game.”

Among the four acting categories, the only person of color nominated was Cynthia Erivo, who earned a nod for her lead performance as Harriet Tubman in the biopic “Harriet.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Critics pointed to several acting snubs including Jennifer Lopez in “Hustlers,” Lupita Nyong’o in “Us,” Awkwafina in “The Farewell” and Eddie Murphy in “Dolemite Is My Name” as those who would have improved the diversity among the Oscar nominees.

There was also a big outcry for the snubs among female directors, including Greta Gerwig of “Little Women” and Lulu Wang of “The Farewell,” who were shut out of the Best Director race by five male directors.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-d43761406e3e4e0aafa23eba74e9b0e2 Stephen King faces backlash for saying 'quality' should matter in Oscar nominees over 'diversity' Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/tech/companies/twitter fox-news/entertainment/events/oscars fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6dd1b993-2e97-50ba-87bf-0e6e59cc0f1a

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Singer Akon announces futuristic ‘Akon City’ in Senegal

Is a pop idol building Wakanda?

Akon announced on his social-media channels on Monday that he is building a city of the future in Africa.

“Just finalized the agreement for AKON CITY in Senegal. Looking forward to hosting you there in the future,” the musical artist of Senegalese descent tweeted.

ALEC BALDWIN BLASTS TRUMP SUPPORTERS, SAYING THEY’VE CAUSED ‘COLOSSAL DESTRUCTION’ TO AMERICA

Akon City, which was authorized by Senegal’s state-owned SAPCO tourism company, will be a “crypto-city” built on 2,000 acres of land.

For money, residents will use a cryptocurrency known as AKoin.

The city, a five-minute drive outside of Dakar, will be billed as a global ecotourism destination.

Senegal’s tourism ministry said the singer wanted to build a sustainable ecotourism village that would “campaign for the environment.”

Akon City shall run entirely on renewable energy through the artist’s solar-power project, Akon Lighting Africa.

“Beyond his status as an artist, it is Akon, the investor who believes in Africa,” the tourism ministry said in a statement before the ceremony.

Westlake Legal Group Akon-Getty Singer Akon announces futuristic 'Akon City' in Senegal Frank Miles fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox-news/world/environment fox-news/travel/regions/africa fox-news/travel/general/eco-tourism fox-news/entertainment/genres/hip-hop-rap fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article aff41e9f-1f7c-55cc-9586-f448635498c3

Akon announced on his social-media channels on Monday that he is building a city of the future in Africa. (CRISTINA QUICLER/AFP via Getty Images)

He spoke to Newsweek in 2018 about the project.

“With the AKoin we are building cities, the first one being in Senegal,” the singer, whose real name is Aliaune Thiam, explained. “We’re securing the land and closing out all the legislation papers for the city. We want to make it a free zone, and cryptocurrency-driven as a test market.

“If it works, we will scale it out to all the other countries in Africa so all the cities are connected. It’s going to be a 50-to-100-year project, most likely. I probably won’t even live to see it finished. But for the project in Senegal, we have a 10-year deadline for that city to be built out.

“We’re currently raising all the money for it now; some of it will be through hedge funds outside of Africa, and the majority of it will be through NGOs and investors within Africa itself.”

Appearing on “The Real” in November, the rapper spoke about his philanthropy efforts in Africa.

“A lot of people don’t really know, but I’m literally advising 30 African presidents as we speak,” Akon said, receiving a wealth of applause from the audience.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“It’s all based on the youth, the development of the youth and things of that nature. I’m everywhere in the world dealing with politics, so my foreign experience is through the roof.”

Westlake Legal Group Akon-Getty Singer Akon announces futuristic 'Akon City' in Senegal Frank Miles fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox-news/world/environment fox-news/travel/regions/africa fox-news/travel/general/eco-tourism fox-news/entertainment/genres/hip-hop-rap fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article aff41e9f-1f7c-55cc-9586-f448635498c3   Westlake Legal Group Akon-Getty Singer Akon announces futuristic 'Akon City' in Senegal Frank Miles fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox-news/world/environment fox-news/travel/regions/africa fox-news/travel/general/eco-tourism fox-news/entertainment/genres/hip-hop-rap fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article aff41e9f-1f7c-55cc-9586-f448635498c3

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

New Iran plane crash video shows 2 missiles hit Ukrainian jet

Westlake Legal Group Iran-plane-wreckage New Iran plane crash video shows 2 missiles hit Ukrainian jet Nick Givas fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military fox news fnc/world fnc d07cdac5-b7de-536f-b409-3eb5cb49e53b article

New video footage from a security camera surfaced on Tuesday that shows two Iranian missiles being fired at a Ukranian passenger plane, resulting in an explosion that killed all 176 passengers on board.

The news comes after Iran claimed to have accidentally shot down the airliner minutes after it took off from Tehran International Airport on Wednesday.

The New York Times verified the authenticity of the camera footage, which shows the destruction of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752. Two missiles were reportedly launched from an Iranian military site about eight miles from the plane.

IRAN BELIEVED TO POSSESS MORE THAN 2,000 BALLISTIC MISSILES, PENTAGON OFFICIALS SAY

The Times also discovered that the plane’s transponder stopped working after the first missile hit before the second missile struck less than 30 seconds later.

The video shows that the airliner was on fire and did not plummet back to earth right away. It attempted to turn back toward the airport, but ultimately exploded and came crashing down out of the sky.

The clip was uploaded to YouTube by an Iranian user around 2 a.m. on Tuesday, according to The Times.

The plane was headed to Kiev and was shot down just hours after Iran launched a ballistic missile attack on two military bases that house U.S. and coalition troops in Iraq. The attacks were in retaliation for a deadly U.S. drone strike earlier this month that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

No Americans were wounded in the attack on the military bases.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the aerospace division of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, told state TV that his unit accepts “full responsibility” for shooting down the Ukrainian aircraft. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attributed the tragedy to “human error.”

Fox News’ Dom Calicchio and Lucia l. Suarez Sang contributed to this report 

Westlake Legal Group Iran-plane-wreckage New Iran plane crash video shows 2 missiles hit Ukrainian jet Nick Givas fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military fox news fnc/world fnc d07cdac5-b7de-536f-b409-3eb5cb49e53b article   Westlake Legal Group Iran-plane-wreckage New Iran plane crash video shows 2 missiles hit Ukrainian jet Nick Givas fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military fox news fnc/world fnc d07cdac5-b7de-536f-b409-3eb5cb49e53b article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Viral video shows man calmly eating meal while fight rages around him

Westlake Legal Group doner-kebab Viral video shows man calmly eating meal while fight rages around him Michael Hollan fox-news/food-drink/food/snack-foods fox-news/food-drink/food/restaurants fox news fnc/food-drink fnc d5144620-f124-54a7-bd65-42a574ff5f68 article

This guy must really like his kebab.

Footage of a fight at a kebab shop in England showed a man calmly sitting at a table eating his food while a fight rages around him. After it was shared on social media, the video went viral with many people commenting on the kebab-eater’s calm attitude.

WARNING: FOOTAGE CONTAINS EXPLICIT LANGUAGE

The fight occurred last Friday night at Ken’s Kebabs in Portsmouth, Yahoo News reported. The footage showed several people involved in the altercation, although several of them appear to be trying to break up the fight.

NEW YORK MAN CLAIMS HE WAS FIRED FOR SHOWING MANAGER VIDEO OF EMPLOYEES MISHANDLING FOOD

The footage also shows a man calmly sitting at one of the establishment’s tables, eating his food. Even when the fight gets close to him, he barely seems to react.

Yahoo News identified the man as Chris Hill, a 52-year-old father who reportedly popped into the kebab shop after a trip to the pub.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR OUR LIFESTYLE NEWSLETTER

According to the news outlet, Hill noticed the fight erupt but decided not to leave his seat and continued to listen to the radio. Apparently, he was enjoying his kebab, although he was reportedly not a big fan of the fries.

Authorities were not called to the scene, according to Yahoo News.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Footage of the incident was viewed over 21 million times on Twitter. Many of the commenters were amused by Hill’s lack of reaction, with many joking about him minding his own business. Several users referred to it as the funniest part of the video.

Westlake Legal Group doner-kebab Viral video shows man calmly eating meal while fight rages around him Michael Hollan fox-news/food-drink/food/snack-foods fox-news/food-drink/food/restaurants fox news fnc/food-drink fnc d5144620-f124-54a7-bd65-42a574ff5f68 article   Westlake Legal Group doner-kebab Viral video shows man calmly eating meal while fight rages around him Michael Hollan fox-news/food-drink/food/snack-foods fox-news/food-drink/food/restaurants fox news fnc/food-drink fnc d5144620-f124-54a7-bd65-42a574ff5f68 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com