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 9)

Trump to nominate Shanahan as permanent defense secretary: sources

President Trump is expected to formally nominate Patrick M. Shanahan to be his permanent defense secretary as soon as next week, two administration officials tell Fox News. This, after an internal Pentagon investigation concluded that the acting defense secretary did not show any bias in favor of his former employer, aerospace giant Boeing.

Shanahan worked at Boeing for over 30 years before coming to the Pentagon as then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis’s deputy at the start of the Trump administration.

Shanahan’s nomination had been held up by the White House since the Pentagon inspector general opened an investigation into Shanahan’s conduct following a report in Politico days after taking over for Mattis alleging Shanahan called Boeing-rival Lockheed Martin’s advanced F-35 program “f—ed up” and said the company didn’t know how to run a defense program following years of cost overruns and delays to the fifth-generation fighter jet.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Shanahan has been serving as acting defense chief since the president forced Jim Mattis to leave the job early following his resignation in December.

Shanahan faces a potentially contentious confirmation hearing in the Republican-controlled Senate in order to assume the role as defense secretary.

President Trump found an early supporter and point man in Shanahan for the creation of a sixth branch of the military, the Space Force.

In an exclusive interview with Fox News’s Bret Baier, Shanahan spoke about his urgency in developing the new branch.

“We have a $19 trillion economy that runs on space.  Our military runs on space.  It is vitally important,” said Shanahan. “[The] Chinese and Russians are deploying capability to put our economy and our military at risk in the time of crisis.”

Asked for comment a spokesman for the acting defense secretary would not answer the question directly if Shanahan was expecting to be nominated next week.

“Acting Secretary Shanahan remains focused SOLELY on the Department, on our global military options, on our servicemembers, civilians, and their families,” said Army Lt. Col. Joseph Buccino.

A defense official added Shanahan will be “ready for a confirmation hearing, should he be nominated.”

Jennifer Griffin, Kevin Corke and Chad Pergram contributed to this report

Westlake Legal Group shanahan Trump to nominate Shanahan as permanent defense secretary: sources Lucas Tomlinson fox-news/us/military fox-news/tech/topics/pentagon fox-news/politics/defense fox news fnc/us fnc article 7e504080-1fa5-59a6-9118-c1181cec0beb   Westlake Legal Group shanahan Trump to nominate Shanahan as permanent defense secretary: sources Lucas Tomlinson fox-news/us/military fox-news/tech/topics/pentagon fox-news/politics/defense fox news fnc/us fnc article 7e504080-1fa5-59a6-9118-c1181cec0beb

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

More ripples in state attorney’s office follow Jussie Smollett case

Westlake Legal Group more-ripples-in-state-attorneys-office-follow-jussie-smollett-case More ripples in state attorney's office follow Jussie Smollett case Matt Finn fox-news/person/jussie-smollett fox news fnc/us fnc article 40603e25-70f1-51fb-8b65-fc68d0f082ac
Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6027968194001_6027962640001-vs More ripples in state attorney's office follow Jussie Smollett case Matt Finn fox-news/person/jussie-smollett fox news fnc/us fnc article 40603e25-70f1-51fb-8b65-fc68d0f082ac

As embattled Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx continues to stand by her office’s decision to suddenly drop 16 felony charges against actor Jussie Smollett, three ranking staffers have now parted with Foxx including Chief Ethics Officer April Perry; the director of the conviction integrity unit, Mark Rotart; and the director of external affairs, Kiera Ellis. Perry and Ellis have not given exact reasons for their resignation. Rotart tells Fox News his departure was planned months ago.

Cook County Inspector General, Patrick Blanchard, is reviewing Kim Foxx’s office’s decisions during the Smollett case. Two separate petitions have been filed in Cook County for a special prosecutor to investigate the case, and President Trump says he’s asked for a federal review. And now, another criminal case that Foxx’s office is prosecuting raises new questions about Foxx’s personal and professional relationship with another alleged Chicago victim that her office might not be prosecuting to the fullest extent.

At an April 6 rally for Foxx lead by The Rev. Jesse Jackson at his Rainbow Push headquarters on the south side of Chicago, Foxx posed for at least one picture and stood alongside known Chicago activist Jedidiah Brown.

Foxx’s office is currently prosecuting 32-year-old Brown for allegedly assaulting Chicago police officers David Alvarez and Jeffrey Shafer while Brown resisted arrest in July 2018.

STATE’S ATTORNEY KIM FOXX CALLS JUSSIE SMOLLETT ‘WASHED UP CELEB WHO LIED TO COPS’ IN TEXT MESSAGE: REPORT

Following the April event at Rainbow Push, Brown posted this picture with Foxx to Facebook with the caption “Let the record reflect, I stand with Kim Foxx. Blue Klux Klan we aren’t going without a fight you’ll never forget!”

Attorney James McKay, who represents the two police officers who Brown allegedly assaulted, tells Fox News the picture of Brown and Foxx just looks bad.

“This is not right. The guy’s got a criminal case pending. A prosecutor has the duty to avoid the slightest appearance of impropriety. Not be with him. Period. It’s just improper,” McKay told Fox News.

McKay filed a petition in Cook County criminal court this week requesting that Foxx’s office be removed from the Brown case and a special prosecutor assigned. The president judge could rule on the petition as early as Tuesday.

McKay’s petition indicates that on July 19, 2018, Brown and a “band of protesters” did not comply with Chicago police officers’ requests to limit a demonstration they organized in the city to areas that would not impede with the flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic. Police say they warned Brown and his group multiple times not to interfere with traffic. The warnings were audio recorded and videotaped, according to McKay’s petition.

Police allege Brown was aggressive, defiant and resistant to police commands to march peacefully, resulting in his arrest in which Brown kicked and punched the police officers. McKay tells Fox News he has obtained an online video that shows Brown preparing to potentially physically engage with police by removing his jewelry on his way to the protest.

McKay says after Brown’s arrest, as detectives investigated, Chicago police held Brown on felony charges of aggravated battery against two on-duty police officers but high ranking members of Foxx’s staff showed up and rejected the felony charges police recommended — despite what McKay says is abundant amount supporting video evidence for felony charges. Brown’s attorney, Michael Oppenheimer, acknowledges to Fox News there is some type of videos that exist. Their exact content is not clear.

Brown was charged with two counts of lesser misdemeanor battery, one count resisting arrest and one count of obstruction of traffic, McKay tells Fox News. Brown’s assault charges are pending in Cook County criminal court.

Oppenheimer tells Fox News his client is innocent of the charges. “All the allegations in the criminal complaint, they are unfounded,” Oppenheimer said.

Oppenheimer says he can’t comment on direct details of the case but he is taking it to trial and says taking a picture with Foxx is not a conflict of interest. “I think having a photograph together with the State’s Attorney, lots of people do, it’s really not a conflict of interest. Kim Foxx takes photos with lots of people. That’s up for the judge to decide.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

It appears Brown and Foxx’s relationship might go beyond taking a picture and appearing together at Foxx’s April rally. McKay writes in his complaint that Brown and Foxx had a working relationship during Foxx’s campaign for state’s attorney in 2015. Fox News cannot confirm the exact relationship between the Brown and Foxx, however Brown is quoted in this Al Jazeera article saying “we worked hard to get Kim Foxx elected,” and Brown is seen in this photograph just days before the Kim Foxx event facing off with police at a police protest against Kim Foxx outside of her downtown office.

Fox News made multiple requests to Kim Foxx’s office for comment or guidance but emails and phone calls were not returned.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6027968194001_6027962640001-vs More ripples in state attorney's office follow Jussie Smollett case Matt Finn fox-news/person/jussie-smollett fox news fnc/us fnc article 40603e25-70f1-51fb-8b65-fc68d0f082ac   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6027968194001_6027962640001-vs More ripples in state attorney's office follow Jussie Smollett case Matt Finn fox-news/person/jussie-smollett fox news fnc/us fnc article 40603e25-70f1-51fb-8b65-fc68d0f082ac

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

Body of missing Ohio teen found in shallow grave near farm

The search for an Ohio teen who last seen on a friend’s farm almost a week ago came to an end Friday after police uncovered the boy’s body in a shallow grave.

The body of 14-year-old Jonathon Minard was discovered around 10:15 a.m. in a shallow grave near a farm in Washington Township, Carroll County Sheriff’s Office confirmed in a press release.

Police gave little details surrounding the discovery but said that the remains were transferred to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner for a complete autopsy. It could take several weeks before the results are released.

Westlake Legal Group Jonathon-E-Minard Body of missing Ohio teen found in shallow grave near farm Paulina Dedaj fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 8ce279d0-257f-57d7-9948-31a87e16281f

Minard was last seen on April 13 helping his 29-year-old friend on the dairy farm of the friend’s dad. (Carroll County Sheriff’s Office)

“At this time, no further questions will be answered as the investigation remains pending. The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office will continue to gather evidence until the investigation is complete,” the press release read.

Minard was last seen on April 13 helping his 29-year-old friend on the dairy farm of the friend’s dad. Investigators were told Minard complained about a toothache and said he’d call his mother at the friend’s house to pick him up.

But Carroll County Sheriff Dale Williams said Minard’s mother didn’t receive that call.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

On Wednesday investigators identified a person of interest. He is described as a 29-year-old man with a criminal record, consisting of mainly drug offenses, Fox 8 reported.

It was not immediately clear if the person of interest was Minard’s friend from the farm.

Westlake Legal Group Jonathon-E-Minard Body of missing Ohio teen found in shallow grave near farm Paulina Dedaj fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 8ce279d0-257f-57d7-9948-31a87e16281f   Westlake Legal Group Jonathon-E-Minard Body of missing Ohio teen found in shallow grave near farm Paulina Dedaj fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 8ce279d0-257f-57d7-9948-31a87e16281f

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

DOJ calls Nadler subpoena for full Mueller report ‘premature and unnecessary’

Westlake Legal Group doj-calls-nadler-subpoena-for-full-mueller-report-premature-and-unnecessary DOJ calls Nadler subpoena for full Mueller report 'premature and unnecessary' Paulina Dedaj fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc Catherine Herridge c7400ac7-d820-51cd-a18c-1caffa1dcd7a article
Westlake Legal Group jerrold-nadler DOJ calls Nadler subpoena for full Mueller report 'premature and unnecessary' Paulina Dedaj fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc Catherine Herridge c7400ac7-d820-51cd-a18c-1caffa1dcd7a article

The Department of Justice responded Friday to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler’s request for Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s full and unredacted report, dismissing the request as both “premature and unnecessary.”

DOJ spokesperson Kerri Kupec said in a statement that Attorney General Bill Barr provided Mueller’s report on Thursday with only “minimal redactions” and, “in the interest of transparency,” the department had provided certain members of Congress, including Nadler, with a report that had “even fewer redactions.”

NADLER REQUESTS MUELLER TESTIFY BEFORE HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE ‘AS SOON AS POSSIBLE’

“In light of this, Congressman Nadler’s subpoena is premature and unnecessary. The Department will continue to work with Congress to accommodate its legitimate requests consistent with the law and long-recognized executive branch interests,” Kupec continued.

Nadler said in a statement early Friday that he subpoenaed the DOJ for the “full version” of the Mueller report and “underlying evidence,” requiring the department to comply by May 1.

“My committee needs and is entitled to the full version of the report and the underlying evidence consistent with past practice,” Nadler’s statement read. “The redactions appear to be significant. We have so far seen none of the actual evidence that the special counsel developed to make this case.”

Prior to the release of the long-awaited report, Nadler also made a request that Mueller himself provide testimony “as soon as possible” before his committee to explain his findings in the nearly 400-page report.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“It is clear Congress and the American people must hear from Special Counsel Robert Mueller in person to better understand his findings.”

While there was no immediate response from Mueller, Barr said at a press conference prior to Nadler’s request that he would be open to providing testimony on the report.

Westlake Legal Group jerrold-nadler DOJ calls Nadler subpoena for full Mueller report 'premature and unnecessary' Paulina Dedaj fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc Catherine Herridge c7400ac7-d820-51cd-a18c-1caffa1dcd7a article   Westlake Legal Group jerrold-nadler DOJ calls Nadler subpoena for full Mueller report 'premature and unnecessary' Paulina Dedaj fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc Catherine Herridge c7400ac7-d820-51cd-a18c-1caffa1dcd7a article

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

Trump would beat Sanders in 2020 matchup, says Obama campaign manager

Westlake Legal Group trump-would-beat-sanders-in-2020-matchup-says-obama-campaign-manager Trump would beat Sanders in 2020 matchup, says Obama campaign manager Sam Dorman fox-news/us/economy fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox news fnc/politics fnc article 3e037ab8-24f5-52ff-8702-1d8401bd9d6d
Westlake Legal Group AP19105826362887 Trump would beat Sanders in 2020 matchup, says Obama campaign manager Sam Dorman fox-news/us/economy fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox news fnc/politics fnc article 3e037ab8-24f5-52ff-8702-1d8401bd9d6d

Jim Messina, campaign manager for former President Barack Obama’s successful re-election campaign, predicted that Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., would be unable to counter President Trump’s economic messaging and would therefore lose in a 2020 electoral matchup.

“Bernie Sanders is unlikely going to be able to stand up to the constant barrage that is Donald Trump on economic issues,” Messina said during the Powerhouse Politics podcast this week.

Messina contended that swing voters were “incredibly focused on the economy” and that winners of the last five presidential elections were those candidates who were able to “win” the economic argument with swing voters.

Sanders already leads the pack of declared, Democratic candidates in polling and fundraising but his poll numbers trail former Vice President Joe Biden, whom Messina campaigned for and is expected to announce his 2020 bid on Wednesday.

TREY GOWDY: MUELLER REPORT RELEASE ‘RESOLVED NOTHING;’ 2020 WILL DELIVER ‘VERDICT’

He will enter a field already filled with more progressive candidates like Sens. Kamala Harris, D-Calif, Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. Sanders, a self-described socialist, appeared to highlight progressives’ growing prominence in the party when he came in second to former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Multiple polls have shown both Biden and Sanders receiving more support than Trump for the 2020 general election.

Messina indicated, however, that the more progressive Sanders wasn’t someone who could both grab swing voters and energize the base — a winning combo that he said former Presidents Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, and Jimmy Carter were able to achieve.

“You have to excite your base and turn out people, and you have to win swing voters. And we are going to look for a nominee who can do both,” Messina said. “Today, you would say in a general election context, Bernie Sanders wouldn’t be that candidate.”

BERNIE SANDERS FAST FACTS: 5 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE VERMONT SENATOR

The former campaign manager’s comments came just as Karl Rove, who served as the chief strategist behind former President George W. Bush’s 2000 electoral bid, speculated that Sanders had a shot at beating Trump.

Messina said that Sanders could win the Democratic nomination and be “the Donald Trump of 2020.” While both Trump and Sanders have been described as populist alternatives to establishment candidates, the two would likely have a lot to debate about on the economy.

That could be tough for Sanders considering the numerous economic milestones — record-low unemployment, strong manufacturing growth, and surprisingly high gross domestic product — that Trump took credit for in the last two years.

Trump has attributed that economic success to his massive tax reform package, which Sanders vehemently opposed. Sanders has pushed a slew of progressive policies, including single-payer health care which set him and other progressives apart from their more moderate counterparts.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

According to Messina, the upcoming Democratic primary would provide a healthy debate between those two wings within the party.

“Overall, this is being cast as a kind of insurgent versus the machine campaign — I think that’s wrong. Democrats are having a very healthy and very predictable fight about the ideological center of the Democratic party,” he said.

Both Sanders and Trump will likely face scrutiny over their personal finances — Trump for refusing to release his tax returns and Sanders for the amount of money revealed in his.

During a Fox News town hall last week, Sanders fended off criticism of his and his wife’s income which totaled more than $1 million in 2016 and 2017. Much of their income came from the success of their bestselling book, something for which Sanders refused to apologize.

Westlake Legal Group AP19105826362887 Trump would beat Sanders in 2020 matchup, says Obama campaign manager Sam Dorman fox-news/us/economy fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox news fnc/politics fnc article 3e037ab8-24f5-52ff-8702-1d8401bd9d6d   Westlake Legal Group AP19105826362887 Trump would beat Sanders in 2020 matchup, says Obama campaign manager Sam Dorman fox-news/us/economy fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox news fnc/politics fnc article 3e037ab8-24f5-52ff-8702-1d8401bd9d6d

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

Obama administration ‘did not do itself proud’ on Russia probe, Examiner editor says

Westlake Legal Group obama-administration-did-not-do-itself-proud-on-russia-probe-examiner-editor-says Obama administration 'did not do itself proud' on Russia probe, Examiner editor says Victor Garcia fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc article 7336b8f3-4a53-59d4-b913-eaae0d4cb9ab
Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6028113102001_6028113601001-vs Obama administration 'did not do itself proud' on Russia probe, Examiner editor says Victor Garcia fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc article 7336b8f3-4a53-59d4-b913-eaae0d4cb9ab

Washington Examiner chief political correspondent Byron York said the Obama administration “did not do itself proud” when it came to dealing with the Russian interference during and in the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election.

“The Obama administration was pretty energetic and looking at what the Trump campaign might’ve been doing during the campaign but not as energetic into actually looking at or stopping what the Russians were doing,” York told “Special Report with Bret Baier.”

TRUMP RAILS AGAINST ASSOCIATES WHO SPOKE TO MUELLER, CLAIMS ‘TOTAL BULL—T’

“Remember, we certainly knew by the time of the first WikiLeaks disclosures during the Democratic National Convention, we knew who was behind this. And the Obama administration did not do itself proud in this.”

Thursday’s release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russia’s attempt to interfere during the 2016 elections brought focus to how the Obama administration confronted meddling, an issue President Trump himself raised on Thursday.

“Anything the Russians did concerning the 2016 Election was done while Obama was President,” Trump tweeted. “He was told about it and did nothing! Most importantly, the vote was not affected.”

York also commented on potential information that could be gained from the investigation into how the Russia query began.

MARY ANNE MARSH: OBAMA DIDN’T DO ENOUGH ON RUSSIA

“Mueller didn’t even release what’ called the scope memo, the Aug. 2 memo that Rod Rosenstein wrote to Robert Mueller expanding his assignment, and we still do not know what he was actually investigating. So yeah, there’s a lot left,” York said.

Fox News’ Sam Dorman contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6028113102001_6028113601001-vs Obama administration 'did not do itself proud' on Russia probe, Examiner editor says Victor Garcia fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc article 7336b8f3-4a53-59d4-b913-eaae0d4cb9ab   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6028113102001_6028113601001-vs Obama administration 'did not do itself proud' on Russia probe, Examiner editor says Victor Garcia fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox news fnc/politics fnc article 7336b8f3-4a53-59d4-b913-eaae0d4cb9ab

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

Roman Polanski asks court to reinstate his film academy membership

Westlake Legal Group roman-polanski-asks-court-to-reinstate-his-film-academy-membership Roman Polanski asks court to reinstate his film academy membership fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fnc/entertainment fnc Associated Press article affcd76e-1c79-5a85-88a2-c5b119a5c39f
Westlake Legal Group roman-polanski Roman Polanski asks court to reinstate his film academy membership fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fnc/entertainment fnc Associated Press article affcd76e-1c79-5a85-88a2-c5b119a5c39f

Roman Polanski asked a judge Friday to restore his membership in the organization that bestows the Academy Awards nearly a year after he was expelled from it for sexual misconduct.

Lawyers for the 85-year-old fugitive director petitioned Los Angeles Superior Court to compel the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to make him a member in good standing again.

PROSECUTORS WON’T CHARGE ROMAN POLANSKI AFTER MOLESTATION REPORT

In May, the academy made the rare move of expelling Polanski and Bill Cosby, months after ending the membership of disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

Friday’s five-page filing states that by not giving Polanski sufficient notice of his expulsion, and not giving he or his lawyer to argue his case in person during the appeal, the academy “failed to comply with its own rules, policies and regulations.”

The academy responded with a brief statement saying, “The procedures taken to expel Mr. Polanski were fair and reasonable. The Academy stands behind its decision as appropriate.”

The filing also alleges that the expulsion violated a California law that requires corporations to give a fair hearing before removing a member, calling it a “prejudicial abuse of discretion.”

NATALIE PORTMAN ‘VERY MUCH REGRETS’ SIGNING PRO-ROMAN POLANSKI PETITION

Polanski’s attorney Harland Braun said at the time that Polanski was “blindsided” by his removal, and learned of it through media reports.

The filing says that the academy’s decision is final and the director has no recourse for reconsideration outside of the courts.

Polanski, who won a best director Oscar for “The Pianist” in 2003, remains a fugitive after pleading guilty to unlawful sex with a minor in 1977 and fleeing the United States the following year. He has been living in Europe since.

He had been an academy member for nearly 50 years at the time of his expulsion, and his films had been nominated for 28 Oscars.

But he had long been one of the organization’s more divisive members. At the 2003 ceremony, Polanski’s win — his first — received a standing ovation. He was not in attendance. He’d previously been nominated for writing his adaptation of “Rosemary’s Baby,” and directing “Chinatown” and “Tess.”

After expelling Weinstein, the academy implemented revised standards of conduct for its over 8,400 members. The standards said the organization is no place for “people who abuse their status, power or influence in a manner that violates standards of decency.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

The code allowed the academy’s board to suspend or expel those who violate the code of conduct or who “compromise the integrity” of the academy.

There have been no reports of Weinstein or Cosby appealing their expulsions from the academy.

Before Weinstein, only one person is thought to have been expelled from the academy: Carmine Caridi, a character actor who had his membership revoked in 2004 for lending DVD screeners of films in contention for Oscars.

Westlake Legal Group roman-polanski Roman Polanski asks court to reinstate his film academy membership fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fnc/entertainment fnc Associated Press article affcd76e-1c79-5a85-88a2-c5b119a5c39f   Westlake Legal Group roman-polanski Roman Polanski asks court to reinstate his film academy membership fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fnc/entertainment fnc Associated Press article affcd76e-1c79-5a85-88a2-c5b119a5c39f

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

Hurricane Michael gets an upgrade to rare Category 5 status

Hurricane Michael, which devastated a swath of the Florida Panhandle last fall, has been upgraded to a Category 5 storm, only the fourth to make recorded landfall in the United States and the first since 1992.

The announcement by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Friday came as no surprise to those still struggling to recover from the storm’s destruction.

“My thought is simply that most of us thought we were dealing with a (Category) 5 anyway,” said Al Cathey, mayor of Mexico Beach, which bore the brunt of the storm when it hit.

National Hurricane Center scientists conducted a detailed post-storm analysis for Hurricane Michael, which made landfall near Mexico Beach and Tyndall Air Force Base on Oct. 10, 2018. They’ve determined that its estimated intensity at landfall was 160 mph (257 kph), a 5 mph (8 kph) increase over the operational estimate used last fall, NOAA said in a news release. That puts Michael just barely over the 157 mph (252 kph) threshold for a category 5 hurricane.

Just 36 hours before hitting Florida’s coast, Michael was making its way through the Gulf of Mexico as a 90 mph (145 kph) Category 1 storm.

But the reclassification doesn’t come with the much-needed state and federal funding Cathey said is necessary to rebuild. “Whether it was a 5 or a 4, it really isn’t relative to anything for most of us who are here. It’s just another number,” Cathey said Friday.

And the numbers tell the story in Mexico Beach, where Cathey said there were about 1,200 residents and 2,700 housing units before Hurricane Michael hit. Today, the population has dipped to about 400 people and there are less than 500 structures standing. And many of those suffered catastrophic damage.

According to NOAA, Category 5 winds were likely experienced over a small area, and the change is of little practical significance. Both categories signify the potential for catastrophic damage. Michael was directly responsible for 16 deaths and about $25 billion in damage in the U.S., and parts of the Florida Panhandle, including Mexico Beach and nearby Panama City, are still recovering from the destruction more than six months later.

The new landfall speed was determined by a review of the available aircraft winds, surface winds, surface pressures, satellite intensity estimates and Doppler radar velocities, NOAA said. That includes data and analyses that weren’t available during the storm. The increase in the estimated maximum sustained wind speed from the operational estimate is small and well within the normal range of uncertainty, NOAA said.

“You still ride through our city and it’s depressing,” Cathey said, adding that they’ve dealt with 1 million cubic yards (0.76 million cubic meters) of debris.

“We still don’t have a pretty face. It’s a mess,” he said. “But we are working diligently at getting ourselves cleaned up and being proactive and helping people get their feet back under them.”

In addition to Hurricanes Michael and Hurricane Andrew in 1992, the only other Category 5 storms known to have made landfall in the U.S. are the Labor Day Hurricane that hit the Florida Keys in 1935 and Hurricane Camille, which ravaged the Mississippi coast in 1969. Michael is also the strongest hurricane landfall on record in the Florida Panhandle and only the second known Category 5 landfall on the northern Gulf coast.

Besides wind speed, atmospheric pressure is also used to measure storm intensity, with a lower central pressure generally meaning higher winds. Michael’s central pressure at landfall is the third lowest on record for a landfall in the U.S. since reliable records began in 1900, trailing only the Labor Day Hurricane of 1935 and Hurricane Camille of 1969.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-8d133df8ffbc4ae2bf4c9d85f920282e Hurricane Michael gets an upgrade to rare Category 5 status FREIDA FRISARO and DAVID FISCHER fox-news/us/disasters/hurricanes-typhoons fnc/us fnc bf5cf23a-9df9-5d53-90d5-e4eccc2abaa0 Associated Press article   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-8d133df8ffbc4ae2bf4c9d85f920282e Hurricane Michael gets an upgrade to rare Category 5 status FREIDA FRISARO and DAVID FISCHER fox-news/us/disasters/hurricanes-typhoons fnc/us fnc bf5cf23a-9df9-5d53-90d5-e4eccc2abaa0 Associated Press article

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

Man convicted of murder at 13 pleads to exposure charge

Westlake Legal Group og-fox-news Man convicted of murder at 13 pleads to exposure charge PONTIAC, Mich. fox-news/us/crime fnc/us fnc Associated Press article 71f03a45-9b1c-58a3-9e50-827ccdf25888

A Detroit-area man convicted of murder at age 13 has pleaded guilty to an indecent exposure charge.

Thirty-three-year-old Nathaniel Abraham was sentenced last week to 30 days in jail, which he had already served. Last year, he was charged with resisting officers trying to arrest him on the exposure charge.

He was charged this year with several counts of possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine. Abraham remains jailed on those charges. Defense attorney James Galen said Friday that Abraham “was at best a street-level dealer” trying to make money for his son born a few months ago.

Abraham was 11 in 1997 when he was accused of fatally shooting a stranger in Pontiac. He was convicted in 1999.

Abraham was released in 2007, but pleaded guilty in 2008 in a drug case and was released from parole last year.

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

Mississippi raises high-stakes reading bar for third graders

Westlake Legal Group mississippi-raises-high-stakes-reading-bar-for-third-graders Mississippi raises high-stakes reading bar for third graders JEFF AMY fox-news/us/education fnc/us fnc Associated Press article 1852c403-918d-5b7b-99cc-90df3369b03f
Westlake Legal Group og-fox-news Mississippi raises high-stakes reading bar for third graders JEFF AMY fox-news/us/education fnc/us fnc Associated Press article 1852c403-918d-5b7b-99cc-90df3369b03f

More than 35,000 Mississippi third graders sat down in front of computer this week to take reading tests, facing a state mandate to “level up” or not advance to fourth grade. But with the bar set higher this year, state and local officials expect more students will fail the initial test, even with efforts to improve teaching.

Mississippi is one of 16 states nationwide that demand third grade students pass a reading score threshold or flunk. Nevada and Michigan plan to impose such requirements in the next two years, and Alabama lawmakers are considering one.

The mandatory retention policy remains controversial nationwide. Experts agree students who flunk a grade are more likely to drop out. While third-grade reading policies typically call for intensive remedial work for students who are held back, one study found the boost helps for a while but eventually fades.

For students, parents and teachers, the high-stakes testing can bring butterflies, although Mississippi hasn’t seen the organized pushback against testing seen in many other states. Bernardytte Robinson, a fifth grade math teacher at Key Elementary in Jackson, said her daughter Ayden Harris, a third grader at the same school, has been sweating the exam since school began in August.

“She said ‘I don’t want to fail, mom,'” Robinson said Ayden told her on Monday, the first day of testing. “I said ‘You’re not going to fail.’ I said ‘You’ve got this.'”

When the Magnolia State implemented its requirement in 2015, students only had to reach the second, or basic, level on a state test scored in five tiers. This year, the state is raising the bar, saying students must reach the third level. That’s still one step short of proficiency, but state Superintendent Carey Wright and others say it’s important to raise expectations.

“We needed to do this, and we need to do this in increments, because we wanted to make sure that our students began moving more toward the proficient level and being more prepared for fourth grade,” said Kymona Burk, the state literacy director.

The Republican policymakers who adopted Mississippi’s plan from Florida support it, pointing to improvements in performance on a nationwide test. Mississippi is paying for literacy coaches to help improve instruction in 182 of 420 schools statewide with a third grade. The state has also provided training on teaching reading to 13,000 people, and provides extra money for summer schools for struggling readers.

Last year, 93% of Mississippi students passed at the basic level on their first attempt, but only 75% reached the third level. Burk said the share of students scoring three or above has been increasing, but she predicts only about 80% will pass. Schools will get scores in early May and students retest in mid-May. A second retest comes after summer school. About 3% of students were allowed to advance last year without passing for various reasons.

Mississippi has long flunked the largest proportion of young students nationwide, often students from poor households who enroll lacking groundwork for academics. Last year, Mississippi held back 9% of kindergartners, 8% of first graders and 6% of second graders.

Harvard University education Professor Martin West studied Florida, where then-Gov. Jeb Bush pioneered the third grade policy. The policy has been promoted in Mississippi and other states by the Foundation for Excellence in Education, which Bush chairs. West said his study finds students held back because of reading problems aren’t any more or less likely to drop out, compared to students who just barely pass. He said students who flunk and get intensive help in Florida get an academic boost for several years, but said it fades out.

Overall, West said he can’t prove third-grade retention policies work. He said states that appear successful “have used the requirement not primarily as a way to retain more students, but as a focal point to concentrate educators’ attention on improving literacy in early grades.”

Last year, all students at A.W. James Elementary in Drew passed on the first try, but Principal Barbara Akon isn’t so sure all her 39 third graders will clear the bar this time. Despite an average class size of 13 and intensive focus, Akon said pretests showed six students in danger of failing. She said the Mississippi Delta school set a pass-rate goal of 90%, or 35 students.

“We want 100%, but this being the first time they’ve had to score this high, we have some concerns,” Akon said.

Outcomes could be worse elsewhere. Adrian Hammitte, interim superintendent in Jefferson County, said he overhauled reading instruction when he took over this year, with help from outside consultants. But only 45% of Jefferson County’s third graders scored three or above last year, and 16% flunked third grade.

“With the new score needed, that level three, and how we performed last year, I’m a little nervous,” Hammitte said of his 110 students. “I feel good about what we put in place. Now we just wait and see.”

____

Follow Jeff Amy at: http://twitter.com/jeffamy .

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