Monthly Archives: July 2015

Former NBA All Star Vin Baker Training for Starbucks Manager

By Krystal Franklin,

Life now for Vin Baker is a far cry from his days in the NBA.

According to The Providence Journal, the 6-foot-11 former Seattle Supersonic center is training to manage a Starbucks franchise in North Kingstown, Rhode Island.

The change of careers comes after Baker lost nearly $100 million in earnings from his 13-year career in the NBA. Despite his status as a four-time all star in the league, Baker struggled with alcoholism towards the end of his career in the pros as well as financial troubles that ultimately resulted in the loss of what he made.

Nowadays, Baker is in a different state of mind with more than four years of being sober under his belt, according to the Journal, which noted that the ex-sports star has remarried.

“When you learn lessons in life, no matter what level you’re at financially, the important part to realize is it could happen,” Baker told the Journal. “I was an alcoholic, I lost a fortune. I had a great talent and lost it. For the people on the outside looking in, they’re like ‘Wow.’ For me, I’m 43 and I have four kids. I have to pick up the pieces. I’m a father. I’m a minister …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Pennsylvania Congressman Chaka Fattah Indicted On Racketeering Charges

By MARYCLAIRE DALE, Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah paid off an illegal $1 million campaign loan with federal grants and charitable donations, funneled campaign funds toward his son’s student loans and disguised a lobbyist’s bribe as payment for a Porsche his TV anchor wife never sold, prosecutors said Wednesday in announcing a racketeering indictment against him.

The 11-term Democrat from Philadelphia led a conspiracy that engaged in bribery, fraud, money laundering and other crimes and netted him hundreds of thousands of dollars, federal investigators said.

The indictment describes four schemes, two involving efforts to erase debts from Fattah’s failed 2007 mayoral bid. The U.S. Department of Justice charged that Fattah used federal grants and donations to his educational foundations to pay back part of the wealthy donor’s $1 million loan.

Fattah dismissed the yearslong investigation.

“This isn’t Deflategate,” he said. “I’ve never been involved in wrongdoing, any unlawful activity (or) any misappropriation of federal funds.”

Fattah vowed to remain in office and fight the charges but stepped down from his leadership post as the top Democrat on the House Appropriations subcommittee that oversees spending for Commerce, Justice, Science and related agencies.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said the charges “are deeply saddening” but said she would …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Ohio Police Officer Indicted In Traffic Stop Murder: ‘He Purposely Killed Him’

By LISA CORNWELL, Associated Press

CINCINNATI (AP) — A University of Cincinnati officer who shot a motorist during a traffic stop over a missing front license plate was indicted Wednesday on a murder charge, with a prosecutor saying the officer “purposely killed him” and “should never have been a police officer.”

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters announced the grand jury indictment at a news conference to discuss developments in the investigation into the July 19 shooting of 43-year-old motorist Samuel DuBose by Officer Ray Tensing.

Authorities have said Tensing spotted a car driven by DuBose and missing the front license plate, which is required by Ohio law. They say Tensing stopped the car and a struggle ensued after DuBose refused to provide a driver’s license and get out of the car.

Tensing, 25, has said he was dragged by the car and forced to shoot at DuBose. He fired once, striking DuBose in the head.

But Deters dismissed Tensing’s claim that he was dragged by the car and suggested that he shouldn’t have pulled DuBose over to begin with.

“He fell backward after he shot (DuBose) in the head,” Deters said, adding that it was a “chicken crap” traffic stop.

On footage released from the body-camera video Wednesday, the officer could …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Brave Parents Break Into Daycare To Save Baby Locked Inside For Night

By Desire Thompson

A Texas mother took initiative when her 10-month-old son was discovered locked inside of a daycare by staffers overnight.`

Sharonda Ross says she dropped her son Jordan off Monday morning at Joann’s Day Care in northeast Houston and expected her husband to pick him up later that evening, reports the New York Daily News. When she realized he hadn’t, Ross and her spouse rushed to the daycare 45 minutes after they closed for the evening to hear her child crying inside the locked building.

Ross says she and her husband broke a window to save their baby. As for the staffers, they didn’t realize they left the child in the facility by himself. After a staffer gave Jordan a bath, she laid him down and cleaned up. Jordan fell asleep and she went home for the evening.

Owner Joann Davis says, “My closer, which was Tricia, left at 6:43; she got here at 6:45 so we figure it was a 2 or 3 minute lapse. My one mistake I know I made is I should have had a sign on the door in case of emergency call this number.”


“It was our mistake. I’m not saying …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Mother Of Eight Becomes Fifth Black Woman To Die In A Police Holding Cell This Month [WATCH]

By Desire Thompson/NewsOne

A mother of eight is the fifth Black woman to be found dead in a jail cell since mid-July.

Mount Vernon, New York native Raynette Turner died in a Westchester County jail cell, according to Pix11. Turner, 43, was arrested for allegedly stealing crabs at a wholesale food store on Saturday. Police say the mother was going to be held until Monday for an arraignment, but was found dead that afternoon.

Pix11 reports:

They say that on Sunday night she reported not feeling well and was taken by ambulance to a hospital, then returned to her cell a few hours later. The officials say Turner was found dead at 2 p.m. Monday.

Herman Turner says he doesn’t believe his wife was harmed by the police, but her medical needs were neglected. Turner’s medical history included hypertension and bariatric surgery. Mr. Turner waited for his wife at her arraignment at 4 p.m. on Monday. He and the rest of the family didn’t know she passed away until Tuesday, when detectives came to their home.

Turner’s husband tells The Journal News:

…read more

Source:: Black America Web

Boy Who Lost Hands to Infection Gets Double-Hand Transplant

By Associated Press

Double-hand transplant recipient eight-year-old Zion Harvey arrives to a news conference with his mother Pattie Ray Tuesday, July 28, 2015, at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) in Philadelphia. Surgeons said Harvey of Baltimore who lost his limbs to a serious infection,  has become the youngest patient to receive a double-hand transplant. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — An 8-year-old boy who lost his hands and feet to a serious infection has become the youngest patient to receive a double-hand transplant, surgeons said Tuesday.

Zion Harvey‘s forearms were heavily bandaged but his hands were visible as he flashed some big smiles Tuesday at a hospital news conference. He demonstrated his still-delicate grip and described waking up with new hands as “weird at first, but then good.”

The boy, from the Baltimore suburb of Owings Mills, Maryland, received the transplant earlier this month at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, though doctors did not publicly disclose the nearly 11-hour operation until this week.

A 40-person medical team used steel plates and screws to attach the old and new bones. Surgeons then painstakingly reconnected Zion’s arteries, veins, muscles, tendons and nerves.

“He woke up smiling,” said Dr. L. Scott Levin, who heads the hand transplant program. “There hasn’t been one whimper, one tear, one complaint.”

Zion, a bright and precocious child Levin described as having “a maturity that is way beyond his 8 years,” contracted sepsis as a toddler. The resulting multiple organ failure forced the amputation of his hands and feet; by age 4, he needed a kidney transplant, receiving the organ …read more

Source:: Black America Web

CEO of National Urban League Announces Presidential Candidate Session At Annual Conference

By Roland Martin

Roland Martin and the CEO of the National Urban League Conference Marc Morial talk about this weekend’s national conference in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and the focus on the Black Lives Matter movement.

“We have a number of sessions taking place. These racial issues have to be addressed, but also poverty and unemployment is also the backdrop.

Click the link above to hear the entire interview!

    …read more

    Source:: Black America Web

    Jail Releases More Footage of Sandra Bland Before Her Death

    By Associated Press

    HEMPSTEAD, Texas (AP) — Texas authorities on Tuesday released several hours of footage showing Sandra Bland during her three days in jail, saying they wanted to dispel rumors that she was dead before arriving there.

    Waller County Judge Trey Duhon said such conspiracy theories — including one that Bland’s mug shot was taken after her death — have prompted death threats against county officials.

    “Because of some of the things that’s gone out on social media, this county has been literally attacked,” he said at a news conference, adding that the FBI is investigating the most serious threats.

    “Sandra Bland was alive and well” until she was found hanging on July 13 in her cell at the Waller County Jail, Duhon said. Authorities have ruled that Bland’s death, three days after her arrest during a confrontational traffic stop, was a suicide.

    The video released shows her arriving at the jail, being questioned by a jailer filling out forms, making phone calls, getting her mug shot taken, sleeping in her cell and being taken in and out.

    She’s calm when she arrives at the jail, sometimes smiling and at one point putting her head in her hands. The jailer let her use the phone at the …read more

    Source:: Black America Web

    EXCLUSIVE: Soledad O’Brien Reflects On Hurricane Katrina 10 Years Later At 5th Annual Starfish Foundation Gala

    By Desire Thompson

    5th Annual Starfish Foundation Gala

    Your browser does not support iframes.

    On the heels of Hurricane Katrina’s 10th anniversary, Soledad O’Brien held her 5th Annual Starfish Foundation Gala, the award-winning journalist’s initiative to mentor promising young women from the New Orleans area, give them monetary and emotional support, and foster opportunities for their success.

    The Foundation was created out of both passion and need. Hurricane Katrina, one of the deadliest natural disasters in United States history, nearly destroyed New Orleans in 2005. O’Brien and husband Brad Raymond were one of the many who helped, but the two took things one step further with the Starfish Foundation.

    In an exclusive interview with NewsOne, O’Brien discussed what the 10-year anniversary of the catastrophe means for her and the young women she’s mentored through the program.

    “I was very frustrated,” she told NewsOne. “I saw that there were so many people who were pregnant and there were ways that we could be helpful. Everyone was trying to figure out, ‘How do we make it work?’ I saw the same thing in education and all of these young women who needed opportunities but couldn’t afford them,” she said.

    “So we started with (the grant) One Beyond Woman and …read more

    Source:: News One

    Ex-Prison Guard Accused of Forcing Inmates to Have Sex

    By KATE BRUMBACK, Associated Press

    ATLANTA (AP) — A former high-ranking corrections officer at a southeast Georgia women’s prison used his position of power to prey on inmates, targeting their vulnerabilities and forcing them to have sex with him, according to investigators.

    Over at least four years, Edgar Daniel Johnson groped and fondled women and forced some to have sex with him, according to sworn statements filed in warrant applications by an investigator for the Georgia Department of Corrections.

    He faces criminal charges, and his lawyer said Johnson, 48, looks forward to defending himself.

    “Mr. Johnson vehemently denies the allegations, and we look forward to having the opportunity to confront these charges in court,” attorney Kendall Gross said.

    The Associated Press spoke to four of more than a dozen women who say Johnson victimized them while they were inmates at Emanuel Women’s Facility in Swainsboro. The AP generally does not name alleged victims of sexual crimes.

    Johnson initially seemed like someone who cared, a comforting thing in a scary place, said one woman who was 25 and had never been in prison when she landed at Emanuel on charges related to an injury her son suffered while with her ex when the boy was supposed to be in her custody. …read more

    Source:: Black America Web