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    Disgraced former New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has died in federal prison in Massachusetts, where he was serving a sentence on a fraud conviction. He was 77.  Silver, a Democrat from Manhattan, was once one of the three most powerful state officials in New York. He led the state Assembly for more than two decades before his abrupt ouster in 2015 after corruption allegations emerged against him. The disgraced politician, who had been battling cancer and kidney disease, passed away in a federal prison in Middlesex, Massachusetts.     Former New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, pictured at a 2018 court hearing, has died in a federal prison in Middlesex, Massachusetts, while serving more than six years on a bribery conviction  Silver was seen being wheeled out of his apartment building on a stretcher in May 2021 on his way back to prison after a two-day furlough after authorities denied his home confinement Silver, who told a judge he prayed he would not die in prison, had been serving a six-and-a-half-year sentence stemming from a bribery scheme.  During his...
    LAS VEGAS (AP) — A 38-year-old Las Vegas woman has been sentenced to more than eight years in federal prison after she was convicted in New York in an elder fraud conspiracy targeting about 7,500 victims and generating about $10 million in proceeds. Federal prosecutors say Romana Leyva was a leader of a fraud conspiracy that exploited elderly victims by remotely accessing their computers and convincing them to pay for computer services. The pop-up windows that appeared on victims screens falsely claimed that a virus had infected their computers, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said. He said some victims paid thousands of dollars for the promised computer services, which they didn’t really need, and never were actually provided. Leyva pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to intentionally damage victims’ computers. Related Articles San Francisco subpoenas unauthorized COVID testing operator suspected of scam operation Elizabeth Holmes signals bid to get guilty verdicts tossed, possibly over jury issues Sales move slowly for fraud-linked Bay Area real estate empire California...
    An illegal alien has been sentenced to just 20 years in prison after murdering a 24-year-old woman in Marshall County, Alabama. Edgar Almanza-Zarazua, a 25-year-old illegal alien from Mexico, had fled back to Mexico after having murdered 24-year-old Gloria Stephanie Palomec in June of 2016. Months later, in October 2016, Zarazua was hit with murder and attempted murder charges though police searched for him for years. A break in the hunt for Zarazua came after he was accused of murdering an individual in Mexico and placed in a local jail. The Marshall’s County Sheriff’s Office worked with the United States Marshal’s Service to extradite Zarazua to the U.S. in January 2020 where he was flown to Birmingham, Alabama, and held on a $3.5 million bail. Though Zarazua was initially charged with murder in the death of Palomec, he pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of manslaughter this month and was given a 20-year prison sentence by Judge Tim Riley — the maximum sentence for such a charge. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency has a detainer on Zarazua so that...
    A D.C. man has been sentenced to more than 2 1/2 years in prison for causing a crash during a drag race almost seven years ago that left an Arlington, Virginia, man dead. The sentence came after tear filled-appeals to the judge for the maximum sentence for Rasheed Murray, 34, from victim Matthew Roth’s family. “Saying goodbye to my son, my firstborn child, a child that made me a mom, was the hardest thing I ever had to do,” Denise Roth said. Matthew Roth died in the hospital from injuries in the crash on July 19, 2015, after Murray lost control of his car during a street race down 16th Street in Northwest. Murray pleaded guilty to causing the crash and also driving while under the influence. Roth was not involved in the drag race. Denise Roth said her son, who was 24 years old, was humble and selfless and loved his family. Matthew Roth was a recent graduate of the University of Maryland when he died. She told the court Murray robbed her son of his future, and robbed...
    Convicted mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik spends his days in a spacious three-room cell, playing video games, exercising, watching TV and taking university-level courses in mathematics and business. Halfway through a 21-year sentence and seeking early release, Breivik, 42, is being treated in a way that might seem shocking to people outside of Norway, where he killed eight in an Oslo bombing in 2011, and then stalked and gunned down 69 people, mostly teens, at a summer camp. But here — no matter how wicked the crime — convicts benefit from a criminal justice system that is designed to offer prisoners some of the comforts and opportunities of life on the outside. Still, Breivik's extreme case is testing the limits of Norway’s commitment to tolerance and rehabilitation. "We have never had anyone in Norway who has been responsible for this level of violence before. And there has been debate here about whether part of the justice system should be changed for someone like him," said Erik Kursetgjerde, who survived the slaughter on Utoya island as an 18-year-old. However, he advises...
    MIAMI (AP) — A South Florida man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for posting bomb-making instructions on the internet for people who he believed were Islamic terrorists. Samuel Baptiste, 29, was sentenced Wednesday in Miami federal court, according to court records. He pleaded guilty in October to attempting to provide material support to terrorists. The new sentence won’t start until after he finishes a previous sentence of six years and eight months for federal firearms charges. According to an indictment, Baptiste posted documents online in November 2016 that included “Instructions: How to Make a Homemade Pipe Bomb,” “Pipe Bombs,” “Improvised Explosive Devices” and “Improvised Munitions Black Book, Volume 1.” Prosecutors said Baptiste posted the information for people who he believed were acting on behalf of the Islamic State terrorist group. Copyright © 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    OSLO, Norway (AP) — A prosecutor in Norway said Thursday that a far-right extremist who killed 77 people in 2011 still is “a very dangerous man” and therefore a poor candidate for release after 10 years in prison, as Norwegian law permits. On the final day of a three-day parole hearing, prosecutor Hulda Karlsdottir said in her closing argument that Anders Behring Breivik “has not shown any genuine remorse in court” and his behavior there is part of a “PR stunt.” “In the clear view of the prosecution, Breivik’s request for parole should not be granted,” Karlsdottir said. Breivik professed white supremacist views and flashed Nazi salutes on the hearing’s opening day while claiming to have renounced violence. A psychiatrist who has observed him since 2012 testified Wednesday that Breivik can’t be trusted. A prison official told the judges hearing the parole request “there is an imminent danger” that, if released, Breivik would again commit serious crimes. Breivik is serving Norway’s maximum 21-year sentence for setting off a bomb in Oslo’s government district and carrying out a...
    A Pennsylvania man found guilty of murder is heading to prison for up to 87 years. Ryan Rivera, 24, was convicted of third-degree murder, conspiracy and carrying a firearm in a jury trial on Nov. 19 in the drive-by killing of 22-year-old Tyreek Gardner in May 2019, according to a release from the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office. Rivera confronted Gardner with another man on the 300 block of E. Fulton St. after the two had crossed paths earlier that night. The man with Rivera punched Gardner before he fled and was shot at by the two men near Tobacco Avenue, where shell casings were later recovered, authorities said. Rivera was then captured on surveillance footage entering a Volkswagen Passat, catching up with Gardner and fatally shooting him while driving down Chestnut Street. Rivera faces between 43 ½ and 87 years in prison, a sentence requested by First Deputy District Attorney Travis Anderson, who noted that the incident was Rivera’s third separate firearm offense and that he was still on parole at the time of the deadly shooting. Rivera, of the...
    The teenager who pleaded guilty to murdering 18-year-old Barnard College student Tessa Majors in New York City’s Morningside Park in 2019 was sentenced Wednesday to 14 years to life in prison, according to a report. Rashaun Weaver received the sentence for fatally stabbing the 18-year-old Virginia transplant on Dec. 11, when he was 14. At the time, Weaver and two others had ventured into the Manhattan park with the plan of robbing people, according to court papers released at the time.  "I want to apologize to the court and government, and your honor," Weaver told the court before his sentence was handed down, according to WNBC-TV. He wore a black tie and a dark-red colored shirt.  "Mostly I want to apologize to Tessa’s family," he reportedly went on. "She deserved to have a long life."  TESSA MAJORS MURDER: TEEN WHO STABBED BARNARD COLLEGE STUDENT TO DEATH PLEADS GUILTY Weaver was allegedly the first to attack the young woman after spotting her inside the park. After she passed the trio in the dimly-lit park while staring down at her iPhone, Weaver...
    LONDON, Ky. — A man pardoned by Kentucky’s former governor for a 2014 drug robbery killing will return to prison to serve a 42-year federal sentence for the same crime. Patrick Baker was convicted of murder committed during a drug trafficking crime last year in a federal trial. He had been out of prison since 2019 when former Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin pardoned him for the slaying of Donald Mills. But media reports that Baker's family had political connections to Bevin and hosted a fundraiser for the former Republican governor put a spotlight on the case. Federal authorities brought new charges against Baker for the killing in May, and he was convicted in August. NYPD OFFICER SHOT WHILE STRUGGLING WITH SUSPECT OVER GUN: REPORT At a hearing Tuesday in U.S. District Court in London, Baker, 43, was sentenced to 42 years in prison, but he was credited for 30 months served on the previous conviction. He was facing a maximum of life in prison. "Baker was convicted of a brazen act of violence — one that resulted in a murder,...
    ARSENAL Fan TV regular 'DT' - real name Liam Goodenough - has had a jail term TRIPLED for stalking, kidnapping and assaulting an ex-girlfriend. Goodenough was originally sentenced to 12 months imprisonment at a court hearing on November 12. 1Arsenal Fan TV regular DT, aka Liam Goodenough, has had a jail sentence for kidnapping his ex tripledCredit: BPM But this was referred onto the the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme, and they have extended it to three years. The court heard how the 42-year-old stalked his former partner as she went on a date. He used a tracker on her phone to drive to a hotel the victim was staying at, where he proceeded to verbally abuse her as well as assaulting her companion. He also photographed her 'in a state of undress'. The court report added: "Goodenough dragged the victim out of the hotel room to his car, suggesting he had a knife and that her son was in the vehicle. "However, when she realised that her son was not in the car she tried...
    CHICAGO -- A former Chicago alderman convicted of tax evasion has sought an early release from prison due to his age, medical conditions and the omicron-fueled COVID-19 surge.The video featured is from a previous report.Attorneys for Edward Vrdolyak filed an emergency petition Friday, according to The Chicago Tribune.Attorneys said the 84-year-old suffers from medical conditions including dementia and has a compromised immune system that would put him at higher risk for severe illness or death.RELATED: Former Chicago Ald. Ed Vrdolyak sentenced to 18 months on tax evasion convictionThe motion seeks that his sentence be reduced to time served.A hearing for the motion has not been set.Vrdolyak began serving his sentence in November after several delays related to the pandemic. He's a former Chicago alderman nicknamed "Fast Eddie" for his backroom dealing.RELATED: Ex-Ald. Ed Vrdolyak pleads guilty to tax evasion chargesHe pleaded guilty in March 2019 to a tax charge alleging that he obstructed an IRS investigation into payments to and from his friend and associate related to Illinois' $9.3 billion settlement with tobacco companies in the late 1990s. Prosecutors said...
    NEW YORK (AP) — A three-to-four year prison sentence is appropriate for a Florida businessman who facilitated illegal foreign campaign contributions after helping Rudy Giuliani seek damaging information on Joe Biden in Ukraine, prosecutors said Friday after defense lawyers urged their client be spared from a prison term. Prosecutors said in advance of the Jan. 21 sentencing of Igor Fruman, 55, that his admission that he solicited a million dollars in illegal foreign contributions to American political candidates warranted a sentence consistent with federal sentencing guidelines. “In short, Fruman ran a scheme to influence U.S. elections with foreign money from start to finish, and should receive the recommended sentence for that serious crime,” they wrote. Fruman pleaded guilty in September to a single count of solicitation of a contribution by a foreign national to resolve more expansive charges contained in an indictment. Federal sentencing guidelines call for a sentence of 37 to 46 months. Prosecutors also said the type of crime should be considered by the sentencing judge. “The serious nature of trying to funnel a million dollars from...
    California Gov. Gavin Newsom blocked a recommendation for parole for Robert F. Kennedy's assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, 77, to be released from state prison on Thursday. Newsom, who has photos of RFK in his home and office, said he sided with the "overwhelming majority" of the Shriver and Kennedy family members by opposing Sirhan's release. “Mr. Sirhan’s assassination of Senator Kennedy is among the most notorious crimes in American history,” Newsom said in a statement, obtained by Politico. “He has failed to address the deficiencies that led him to assassinate Senator Kennedy. Mr. Sirhan lacks the insight that would prevent him from making the same types of dangerous decisions he made in the past.” GALLEGO CALLS OUT FELLOW ARIZONA DEMOCRAT SINEMA FOR HER SUPPORT OF FILIBUSTER Last year, a parole panel recommended Sirhan be released, citing his self improvement and new laws, but the decision was ultimately up to Newsom. Fifteen previous request to be paroled were denied, according to Fox 11. Sirhan was convicted of assassinating the former U.S. attorney general and presidential candidate...
    (CNN)Myanmar's ousted civilian leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, was sentenced to another four years in prison on Monday, the second round of verdicts against the Nobel prize winner. Suu Kyi was found guilty of multiple charges that include possession of unlicensed walkie-talkies, a source with knowledge of the court proceedings told CNN.Suu Kyi, 76, was Myanmar's state counselor and de facto leader of the country before she was ousted and detained by the military in a coup 11 months ago and hit with almost a dozen charges that add up to combined maximum sentences of more than 100 years.They include several charges of corruption -- which each carry a maximum prison sentence of 15 years -- violating Covid-19 pandemic restrictions during the 2020 election campaign, incitement, illegally importing and possessing walkie talkies, and breaking the colonial-era Official Secrets Act -- which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison.She has rejected all allegations and her supporters say the charges against her are political.Read MoreAnalysis: Aung San Suu Kyi is back behind bars. But that wont stop Myanmars pro-democracy movementMonday's...
    Ahmaud Arbery’s killers were each sentenced to life in prison on Friday after the late 25-year-old’s family had earlier asked the court to show them no mercy. Judge Timothy Walmsley sentenced Travis McMichael, his father Gregory McMichael, and William “Roddie” Bryan to life sentences for the 2020 killing of Arbery, who was out jogging when he was shot to death in a Georgia neighborhood. Each defendant was found guilty in November of varying murder and other charges. Walmsley sentenced both McMichaels to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Bryan, meanwhile, was given a sentence of life with the possibility of parole. Before handing down the sentence, Walmsley blasted each man for their callous behavior. “There’s been discussion about remorse,” said Walmsley. “Remorse is something that’s felt and demonstrated, in this case, getting back to the video, again, after Ahmaud Arbery fell, the McMichaels turned their backs. Walmsley also said, “They walked away. This was a killing, It was callous. And it occurred, as far as the court is concerned, based upon the evidence because confrontation was being sought.” Watch above, via CNN. Have...
    On the campaign trail for Manhattan district attorney in 2021, Alvin Bragg was seen by many observers as unlikely to deliver on the reforms he promised. Now that he has been sworn in, he is already planning big moves that could revolutionize the system—unless it destroys him first. In a memorandum published January 3, DA Bragg states to line prosecutors working under him that they will no longer prosecute “marijuana misdemeanors,” most trespassing charges, turnstile jumping, most resisting arrest charges, and more. “Prostitution” is not specifically named, but a prosecutor must ask a supervisor before charging a client with patronizing. For felonies that are not homicides, high-grade felonies involving serious physical injury with a weapon, most sex offenses, felony domestic violence or major economic crimes, the new default policy is for prosecutors to “not seek a carceral sentence.” The memo also tells line prosecutors that they “shall not seek a sentence of life without parole,” at least under most ordinary circumstances. Bragg additionally ordered that Manhattan prosecutors should seek to downgrade certain serious charges if mitigating factors are present. For...
    Rogel Aguilera-Mederos  The judge who presided over the trial of truck driver Rogel Aguilera-Mederos on Tuesday took Gov. Jared Polis to task for the way in which he reduced the man’s 110-year prison sentence to just 10 years. District Court Judge Bruce Jones wrote in an order, obtained by The Denver Post on Wednesday, that he learned of the commutation through news reports. Aguilera-Mederos had been set for a resentencing hearing in mid-January in which Jones was expected to reduce the truck driver’s 110-year prison sentence. But the governor’s unusually speedy commutation upended that process. “The court respects the authority of the Governor to do so,” Jones wrote of the sentence reduction. “Based on the timing of the decision, however, it appears this respect is not mutual.” Aguilera-Mederos was convicted of more than two dozen crimes after he lost his brakes in Colorado’s high country in 2019 and drove his semitrailer into stopped traffic under an overpass in Lakewood, killing four people. At sentencing last month, Jones was compelled by the state’s mandatory minimum sentencing laws to send Aguilera-Mederos to...
    A Philadelphia inmate who served 37 years in state prison walked out of the facility a free man on Tuesday after a federal court tossed his 1984 murder conviction. Willie Stokes, 61, was sentenced to life behind bars after police bribed a witness in his case -- Franklin Lee with -- sex, drugs, and a light sentence in exchange for false testimony in the 1980 case, officials said. A hug from his mom and a corned beef hoagie were what he looked forward to getting most, the Associated Press reports. Lee was being held on unrelated rape and murder charges at the time, and said he "felt weak and went along with the offer," the AP says. He was charged with perjury days after Stokes was convicted of murder. Stokes only learned of the perjury plea in 2015. Lee was released from prison two years ago after serving 35 years for rape, murder, and perjury charges. He apologized to Stokes in court "for the problem" that he caused, the AP says. Click here for more from the AP.
    MIAMI (AP) — Rapper Pooh Shiesty has pleaded guilty to a federal gun charge in Florida and avoided a possible life sentence. Lontrell Williams Jr., 22, pleaded guilty Monday in Miami federal court to conspiring to possess firearms in furtherance of crimes of violence and drug trafficking, according to court records. The Tennessee native faces up to 20 years in prison, although attorneys for both sides have recommended a sentence of about eight years, the Commercial Appeal reported. A judge will determine Williams’ sentence at a later hearing. As part of the plea deal, prosecutors dropped three charges, including a gun charge that had a possible maximum sentence of life in prison, the newspaper reported. According to court records, the charges related to three separate events. Williams was inside a car in Memphis, Tennessee, in July 2020 when an occupant of the car discharged a firearm at a gas station, officials said. Three months later, Williams was part of an armed group that shot and wounded two people and stole marijuana, codeine and high-end sneakers at a hotel...
    The new district attorney of Manhattan is under fire for ordering prosecutors to stop pursuing prison time for a significant number of criminal cases. Alvin Bragg's office will "not seek a carceral sentence" except in cases of homicide, domestic violence felonies, corruption, and some sex crimes, according to a Monday memo Bragg sent to staff. "This rule may be excepted only in extraordinary circumstances based on a holistic analysis of the facts, criminal history, victim's input (particularly in cases of violence or trauma), and any other information available," the memo read. OVER 1,000 BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS EMPLOYEES CALL OUT OF WORK The "impacts of incarceration" must be considered by prosecutors, Bragg, a Democrat, instructed. These effects include barriers to employment and housing, cost and race disparities, and an impact on public safety, he said. "Data, and my personal experiences, show that reserving incarceration for matters involving significant harm will make us safer," according to the memo. When assistant district attorneys do seek prison sentences, they may only request a determinate sentence up...
    Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) is being called out after reducing the prison sentence of a Cuban national who was convicted of killing four Americans in a deadly 2019 crash. Rogel Lazaro Aguilera-Mederos was arrested after he caused a 28-vehicle crash in Lakewood, Colorado, that took the lives of 24-year-old Miguel Angel Lamas Arellano, 67-year-old William Bailey, 61-year-old Doyle Harrison, and 69-year-old Stanley Politano, Breitbart News reported. Aguilera-Mederos is a green card-holder from Cuba who had been living in Texas. In October 2021, Aguilera-Mederos was convicted by a jury on 27 counts including four counts of vehicular homicide, six counts of first-degree assault, 10 counts of attempt to commit assault in the first degree, four counts of careless driving causing death, two counts of vehicular assault, and one count of reckless driving. As a result, Aguilera-Mederos was sentenced to 110 years in prison. The families of the victims have said they wanted a sentence of around 20 to 30 years. Facing pressure from jailbreak activists, including reality television star Kim Kardashian West, Polis reduced Aguilera-Mederos’s sentence to just 10 years in prison. Thank you @GovofCO ????????????????...
    A truck driver who received a 110-year sentence after being convicted on charges stemming from a fatal crash west of Denver will serve just 10 years in prison because Democratic Colorado Gov. Jared Polis stepped in. Polis commuted the lifelong sentence handed to Rogel Aguilera-Mederos after vehicular manslaughter convictions from the 2019 pileup to just 10 years after outcry over the original sentence led to an online petition gathering millions of signatures, the Associated Press reported Friday. “The length of your 110-year sentence is simply not commensurate with your actions, nor with penalties handed down to others for similar crimes. There is an urgency to remedy this unjust sentence and restore confidence in the uniformity and fairness of our criminal justice system, and consequently I have chosen to commute your sentence now,” Polis said in a letter to Aguilera-Mederos on Thursday. (RELATED: 26-Year-Old Truck Driver Sentenced 110 Years For Crash That Killed Four) Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has shortened the prison sentence of a truck driver convicted in a deadly explosive crash to 10 years, drastically reducing his original 110-year term that...
    A new Netflix documentary investigates Richard Cottingham, also known as the 'Times Square Killer' who said he raped and killed over 105 women and is currently serving a life sentence in New Jersey  Netflix's documentary Crime Scene: The Times Square Killer examines the notorious case of Richard Cottingham - also known as 'The Torso Killer' - who claimed to have raped, slaughtered and mutilated more than 100 women between 1967 and 1980. The series begins with a grisly discovery at the Travel Inn Motor Hotel in Times Square on December 2, 1979. Police responded to a fire in Room 417, where two women had been discovered on a pair of twin beds. But when first responders attempted CPR, they realized the bodies had no heads and no hands. With only torsos, police were unable to identify the victims. One detective said it was 'the cleanest crime scene he's ever seen.' Spatter, gore, fingerprints, puddles of blood, there was no evidence except for their clothing, a pair of Bonjour jeans, a white leotard, patent leather boots and a black fur coat, which the...
    Colorado Gov. Jared Polis on Thursday reduced the sentence from 110 years to 10 years for the former truck driver convicted of causing a 2019 fatal crash that killed four people. Polis called the sentence imposed on Rogel Aguilera-Mederos[cq comment=”cq” ] “highly atypical and unjust” in his Thursday letter announcing the commutation. Aguilera-Mederos, 26, will be eligible for parole Dec. 30, 2026. “You were sentenced to 110 years in prison, effectively more than a life sentence, for a tragic but unintentional act,” Polis wrote in the letter. “While you are not blameless, your sentence is disproportionate compared with many other inmates in our criminal justice system who committed intentional, premeditated, or violent crimes.” The decision comes after the 110-year sentence imposed two weeks ago drew nationwide outrage and more than 5 million people signed a petition calling on the governor to reduce the sentence. The outcry prompted First Judicial District Attorney Alexis King, whose office prosecuted the case, requested that the judge reconsider the sentence. First Judicial District Court Judge Bruce Jones granted the request and scheduled a Jan. 13...
    "You were sentenced to 110 years in prison, effectively more than a life sentence, for a tragic but unintentional act. While you are not blameless, your sentence is disproportionate compared with many other inmates in our criminal justice system who committed intentional, premeditated, or violent crimes," the governor said. "Your highly unusual sentence highlights the lack of uniformity between sentences for similarly situated crimes, which is particularly true when individuals are charged with offenses that require mandatory minimum sentences. This case will hopefully spur an important conversation about sentencing laws, but any subsequent changes to the law would not retroactively impact your sentence, which is why I am granting you this limited commutation," Polis said.
    The sentence of a truck driver facing 110 years in prison in connection to a crash in bumper-to-bumper traffic that killed four and injured others will be reduced by 100 years, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis declared Thursday. Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, the truck driver, had was granted the reprieve during the Democratic governor's annual clemency action. "The length of your 110-year sentence is simply not commensurate with your actions, nor with penalties handed down to others for similar crimes," Polis said in Aguilera-Mederos's commutation letter. "There is an urgency to remedy this unjust sentence and restore confidence in the uniformity and fairness of our criminal justice system, and consequently I have chosen to commute your sentence now." Polis also granted two other commutations and 15 individual pardons. He also signed an executive order that grants 1,351 pardons for people convicted of possessing two ounces of marijuana or less. TRUCKER RESPONSIBLE FOR FIERY COLORADO CRASH THAT KILLED FOUR SENTENCED TO 110 YEARS Aguilera-Mederos, now 26, was convicted of 27 counts out of 42 charges, including vehicular homicide...
    DENVER (AP) — Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has shortened the prison sentence of a truck driver convicted in a deadly explosive crash to 10 years, drastically reducing his original 110-year term that drew widespread outrage. The decision Thursday on Rogel Aguilera-Mederos’ sentence was among several end-of-the-year commutations and pardons issued by Polis. The move comes days after a judge scheduled a hearing for next month to reconsider the sentence at the request of the district attorney, who had planned to ask that it be reduced to 20 to 30 years. The 2019 crash killed four people. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    DENVER (AP) — Colorado governor shortens prison sentence of a truck driver convicted in a deadly crash to 10 years. Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
                 In an attempt to create an alternative to prison time for low-level criminal offenders, Florida Senator Darryl Rouson last week proposed a bill (SB 1356) identical to the bill filed in September (HB 187) that would allow offenders to enlist in military service rather than face incarceration. The option to enlist in lieu of going to prison is only eligible for first-time criminal offenders who are ages 25 or younger, whose primary offense is a misdemeanor, and whose sentencing for imprisonment is no more than four years. In order to fulfill the requirements involved in opting for the military service sentencing instead of prison time, an offender must achieve a minimum acceptable score on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test, then successfully complete basic training and his or her first term of enlistment. As for fees and court costs attributed to an offender’s sentencing, he or she must satisfy all fines and other financial obligations imposed for the offense by the completion of his or her first term of enlistment. If an offender fails to complete...
    John T. Earnest has been sentenced to serve a second life term in prison for a fatal California synagogue shooting in 2019, CNN reported.  According to a Department of Justice (DOJ) statement, Earnest was sentenced to life plus 30 years in federal court on Tuesday after pleading guilty to a 113-count indictment that included hate crime and weapons violations.  Earnest, who was 19 years old at the time, killed Lori Gilbert Kaye and injured three others in a shooting at the Chabad of Poway synagogue, which he entered during the last day of Passover armed with an AR-15. Earnest also admitted to setting fire to a mosque at Escondido, Calif., just weeks prior to the shooting.  Prosecutors said that Earnest wrote a manifesto that was posted on the internet before the attack. He made multiple anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim statements such as "I can only kill so many Jews" and "I only wish I killed more,” CNN reported.  "The defendant targeted his victims because he hated the Jewish community and Muslim community, hatred that has no place in our society and hatred that will never,...
    (CNN)John T. Earnest, who admitted to a shooting at a San Diego area synagogue that killed one and injured three others in 2019, has been sentenced to a second life sentence.Earnest was sentenced to life plus 30 years in prison in federal court on Tuesday after previously pleading guilty to a 113-count indictment that included hate crime and weapons violations, according to a Department of Justice news release. He was previously sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole following a plea agreement in state court.Lori Gilbert Kaye was killed in the shooting on the last day of Passover in 2019 when Earnest, who was 19 at the time and armed with an AR-15 style rifle, entered the crowded Chabad of Poway synagogue and began shooting.Earnest also admitted to setting fire to a mosque in nearby Escondido just weeks before the shooting.California synagogue shooter sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole "The defendant targeted his victims because he hated the Jewish community and Muslim community, hatred that has no place in our society and hatred...
    A Colorado judge set a hearing date to reconsider the 110-year sentence for a truck driver involved in a fatal accident in 2019.  Judge Bruce Jones set the hearing for Jan. 13 regarding Rogel Aguilera-Mederos’ lengthy sentence, according to The Associated Press.  Jones added that he wanted to learn about the law that would allow him the discretion to determine his own sentence and said that victims would be permitted to speak at the hearing, the AP reported.  “I am a captive audience if they want to speak to me,” the judge said of the victims. The 26-year-old was convicted of 27 counts in October after a 2019 accident when he was driving a truck that killed four people and crashed into several cars. He later received a 110-year sentence, and Colorado law requires him to serve time for each count consecutively, not concurrently. “I will state that if I had the discretion, it would not be my sentence,” Jones said at the time of the sentencing. But over 4.6 million people have since signed an online petition urging Colorado Gov. Jared...
    A Colorado district attorney asked a judge on Monday to consider reducing the 110-year prison sentence of a truck driver for an explosive crash that killed four people in suburban Denver. Prosecutors and attorneys representing 26-year-old Rogel Aguilera-Mederos were in court for a status hearing on Monday morning, when a re-sentencing hearing was set for Jan. 13, 2022, to consider the possible sentence change. The 110-year sentence has drawn outrage from around the country and among truckers, with around 5 million people signing an online petition seeking clemency for him.  DOZENS PROTEST OUTSIDE COLORADO CAPITOL AGAINST 110-YEAR SENTENCE OF TRUCKER next Image 1 of 2  Rogel Aguilera-Mederos was convicted in October 2021 of causing a fiery pileup that killed four people and injured six others. (Lakewood Police Department via AP, File) prev Image 2 of 2 Workers clear debris from Interstate 70 on April 26, 2019, in Lakewood, Colo., following a deadly pileup involving a semi-truck hauling lumber.  (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File) Last week, District Attorney Alexis King said in a statement she would seek...
    A Colorado judge will in January reconsider the 110-year prison sentence for the truck driver who killed four people when he crashed into stopped traffic on Interstate 70 just over two years ago. District Court Judge Bruce Jones scheduled a hearing for January 13 to reconsider 26-year-old Rogel Aguilera-Mederos’ prison term, a lengthy mandatory minimum sentence that raised widespread outrage. In the two weeks since the sentencing, nearly 5 million people signed an online petition calling for the prison term to be shortened, and Gov. Jared Polis said he would expedite consideration of Aguilera-Mederos’ petition for clemency. When Jones imposed the 110-year sentence on Dec. 13, he said was doing so only because he was compelled to by law, and suggested he was open to reducing the prison term through a future hearing. In an unusual move, that resentencing hearing was requested by First Judicial District Attorney Alexis King, who pursued the charges that ensured Aguilera-Mederos would spend decades in prison if convicted. Jones on Monday said the prosecution’s request was without precedent — such hearings are usually called for...
    A Russian court extended the 13-year prison term Monday for a Russian historian of Josef Stalin-era repression by an additional two years, making his sentence 15 years. Yuri Dmitriyev, who uncovered mass graves of Stalinist victims, was found guilty last year of sexually abusing his adopted daughter. Supporters of Dmitriyev claimed the ruling was politically motivated and said the charge was fabricated. Dmitriyev also denied the charges. Dmitriyev, 65, was also charged with indecent acts, illegal possession of a part of a weapon, and creating child pornography after allegedly taking naked photos of his daughter. However, experts initially said the photographs were not pornography. Dmitriyev was acquitted of all charges in 2018. However, the case was reopened a few months later. He was found guilty of sexual assault in July of 2020 and sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison, yet a few months later, the sentence was extended by a decade by the Russian Supreme Court. PARANOID PUTIN CLAIMS US IS TRYING TO PARTITION RUSSIA The Petrozavodsk City Court, near the border of Finland,...
    First Judicial District Attorney Alexis King says she will seek a dramatic reduction in the sentence for Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, the truck driver handed 110 years in prison for causing a fiery crash on Interstate 70 in Lakewood that killed four people. King, a first-term Democrat, said in a news release Friday evening that “the facts of this case and input from the victims and their families” compels her to request a new sentence of 20 to 30 years, instead of the longer prison term her office sought by filing charges that carried mandatory consecutive sentences. “As the jury found, Mr. Aguilera-Mederos knowingly made multiple active choices that resulted in the death of four people, serious injuries to others, and mass destruction. This sentencing range reflects an appropriate outcome for that conduct, which was not an accident. Given that the victims in this case have more than one view of an appropriate outcome, and this trial court heard the evidence presented, we believe that this hearing is the best path to securing justice for everyone involved,” King said in a statement....
    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The former suburban Minneapolis police officer who said she confused her handgun for her Taser when she killed Daunte Wright will be sentenced in February after a jury convicted her Thursday on two counts of manslaughter. The most serious charge against Kim Potter — first-degree manslaughter — carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. Here’s how her sentencing could play out: READ MORE: 'Today We Have Gotten Accountability': Daunte Wright's Family Thanks Community For SupportTHE CHARGES After roughly 27 hours of deliberation over four days, a jury found Potter guilty of both first-degree manslaughter and second-degree manslaughter in the April 11 killing of Wright, a Black motorist. For first-degree manslaughter, prosecutors had to prove Potter caused Wright’s death while recklessly handling a firearm in a way that death or great bodily harm to any person was reasonably foreseeable. The second-degree manslaughter charge required prosecutors to prove Potter caused his death “by her culpable negligence,” meaning that Potter “caused an unreasonable risk and consciously took a chance of causing death or great bodily harm” to Wright....
    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The former suburban Minneapolis police officer who said she confused her handgun for her Taser when she killed Daunte Wright will be sentenced in February after a jury convicted her Thursday on two counts of manslaughter. The most serious charge against Kim Potter — first-degree manslaughter — carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. Here’s how her sentencing could play out: THE CHARGES After roughly 27 hours of deliberation over four days, a jury found Potter guilty of both first-degree manslaughter and second-degree manslaughter in the April 11 killing of Wright, a Black motorist. For first-degree manslaughter, prosecutors had to prove Potter caused Wright’s death while recklessly handling a firearm in a way that death or great bodily harm to any person was reasonably foreseeable. The second-degree manslaughter charge required prosecutors to prove Potter caused his death “by her culpable negligence,” meaning that Potter “caused an unreasonable risk and consciously took a chance of causing death or great bodily harm” to Wright. WHAT SENTENCE IS POSSIBLE? Under Minnesota statutes, Potter, who is white,...
    Former suburban Minneapolis police officer Kim Potter is facing up to 15 years in prison when she is sentenced on Feb. 18 for first- and second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of Daunte Wright.  The jury, six men and six women, deliberated for more than 27 hours over the course of four days before reaching their verdict on Thursday afternoon.  Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said outside the courthouse shortly after the verdict was read that his office will push for a "fair" sentence.   "The main thing about sentencing is that the Wright family is going to be able to make a victim impact statement," Ellison said. "The most important thing may be that really for the first time, they’re going to talk about how this tragic incident impacted them and their lives."  Kim Potter is being held at a correctional facility in Shakopee, Minnesota, while she awaits sentencing.  (Minnesota Department of Corrections) Potter faces up to 15 years in prison for the first-degree manslaughter charge and up to 10 years in prison for the second-degree charge.  She...
    DENVER -- Relatives, lawmakers and other supporters of a trucker sentenced to 110 years in prison after an explosive brake-failure crash that left four people dead rallied in Denver on Wednesday to plead for clemency.Supporters of Rogel Aguilera-Mederos say the sentence is deeply unjust and truck drivers around the country have taken up his cause, using hashtags like #NoTrucksToColorado and #NoTrucksColorado.Speaking at the rally at the state Capitol, Leonard Martinez, one of the lawyers representing Aguilera-Mederos, said the injustice of such long sentences needs to be addressed, both by reforming sentencing laws but also looking at the actions of prosecutors and judges."This fight is not just for him but for all," he said.The Colorado judge has said mandatory-minimum sentencing laws forced him to impose the long prison term after Aguilera-Mederos was convicted of vehicular homicide and other charges.RELATED: DA asks court to reconsider 110-year sentence for Colorado truck driverEMBED More News Videos After more than 4.5 million people signed an online petition, a Colorado DA is asking the court to reconsider the 110-year sentence for a trucker convicted in a...
    Dozens gathered outside Colorado's Capitol building in protest of the 110-year sentence given to a Houston truck driver found guilty in a 2019 deadly car pile-up.  "Whether that’s clemency in the form of a partial commutation or some other action, we’re asking that Governor Polis review that case," said Democratic state Sen. Julie Gonzales Wednesday. Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, who was 23 at the time of the crash, was sentenced in Colorado last week to 110  years in prison after he was found guilty on 27 counts in the 2019 crash that killed four people and injured others.  FILE - This 2019 photo provided by the Lakewood Police Department shows Rogel Aguilera-Mederos. Aguilera-Mederos, who was convicted in October 2021 of causing a fiery pileup that killed four people and injured six others on Interstate 70 west of Denver in April 2019, was sentenced Monday, Dec. 13 to 110 years in prison. (Lakewood Police Department via AP, File) (Lakewood Police Department via AP, File) JUROR IN COLORADO TRUCK CRASH CASE SAYS 110-YEAR SENTENCE 'NOT RIGHT': 'CRIED MY EYES OUT' Investigators of the...
    About 100 people rallied at the Colorado State Capitol on Wednesday in support of clemency for the truck driver who was sentenced to more than a century in prison last week, with many in the crowd hoping to continue the movement’s mounting momentum. “This type of injustice has to stop,” said Leonard Martinez, an attorney for the trucker’s family. “It has to stop at every level. It starts with legislation, it starts with the district attorney’s offices and it starts with our judges. We cannot stop until this system has been changed.” Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, 26, was sentenced to a mandatory minimum of 110 years in prison after he was convicted of 27 crimes after he lost his brakes while driving a semitrailer on Interstate 70 in Colorado’s high country in 2019. Aguilera-Mederos passed by a runaway truck ramp designed to stop out-of-control semis and instead crashed into stopped traffic in Lakewood, killing four people in a fiery 28-car pileup. The 110-year sentence drew immediate criticism, and calls for clemency have spread nationwide in the nine days since the sentencing. “I...
    Representatives pushing for clemency for a Colorado truck driver sentenced to 110 years in prison for a deadly car pileup met with Gov. Jared Polis Wednesday as calls for leniency continue to grow.  The League of United Latin American Citizens, or LULAC, met with the Democratic governor to discuss the case of Rogel Aguilera-Mederos. Aguilera-Mederos, 26, was sentenced earlier this month for an April 2019 crash on Interstate 70 near Denver that killed four people. Some have criticized the lengthy punishment as harsh given that the brakes of his semi-truck failed, and he lost control of the vehicle.  COLORADO TRUCKER IN DEADLY PILEUP GETS 110 YEARS, GETS EMOTIONAL AT SENTENCING Calls for leniency continue to grow in the case of Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, 26, who was recently sentenced to 110-years in prison for a 2019 crash that killed four people. (Fox News) "The meeting with the governor was a strong, positive step in trying to free Rogel Aguilera-Mederos," LULAC National President Domingo Garcia told Fox News in an audio statement. "We explained to the governor the injustice, the disparity in...
    Thousands of federal convicts who were released from prison during the height of the pandemic and sent home to carry out the their sentences will not be sent back to prison facilities, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Tuesday. Following an opinion from the Office of Legal Counsel, the DOJ ruled the federal Bureau of Prisons can use discretion when deciding whether offenders who were sent home to serve their sentence can remain home once the state of emergency is lifted. “Thousands of people on home confinement have reconnected with their families, have found gainful employment, and have followed the rules. In light of today’s Office of Legal Counsel opinion, I have directed that the Department engage in a rulemaking process to ensure that the Department lives up to the letter and spirit of the CARES Act,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said. WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 06: Attorney General Merrick B. Garland speaks at a press conference at the Department of Justice on December 06, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images) “We will exercise our authority so that those...
    It took 26 years for death to catch up to Donald Ramon Ortiz. A member of the Mexican Mafia, Ortiz was cast out of the criminal organization in the mid-1990s after angering other members. Ortiz, they decided, should be killed. For the next quarter-century, as he cycled through county jails, state prisons and brief stints on the street, he wore a target on his back. Ortiz knew he was a marked man. Authorities knew it too. Whenever they discovered a plot to kill Ortiz or he was attacked in prison, they’d offer to protect him. His answer was always the same: I can take care of myself. Then, last month, a man walked up to Ortiz and fired a bullet into his head, leaving him to die in the street in Chino. He was 59 years old. Ortiz’s rise and fall in the Mexican Mafia tells a larger story about a syndicate that, through a mix of ruthlessness and business savvy, came to dominate California’s prisons and many of its street gangs. The killing of Ortiz illustrates how...