now browsing by tag
According to Court House News, Julia Garcia is suing Walmart Stores after the “humiliating ordeal” she endured at the hands of two employees who accused her of using counterfeit currency at a San Antonio, Texas, location.
Garcia says she was Christmas shopping with her children at a Walmart in San Antonio in December 2010 and entered a checkout lane around 2 a.m. Garcia says she paid for her $150 purchase with a $100 bill, a $50 bill and change.
“The cashier inspected the $100 bill, turned to another cashier and had a brief discussion, and returned to her register telling the plaintiff her money was ‘fake,’” the complaint states. “The cashier proceeded to rip the $100 bill in half without performing any counterfeit detection tests. The metallic strip in the $100 bill was clearly visible.”
Garcia claims that a manager named Russell was then called over. Russell allegedly told her that the money was counterfeit and that she would have to wait for the police.
According to the complaint, Garcia then pulled out another $100 bill that she had in her possession. She alleges that Russell took the second bill from her and ripped it in half as well, saying that it, too, was counterfeit.
Garcia claims that Walmart made her wait at the front of the store, “in plain sight of all passing customers,” until police arrived. She said she was publicly humiliated by the store’s employees who told other shoppers that she had been trying to use fake currency.
Finally, two police officers arrived at the store. Upon checking the torn notes, they determined that both were legal tender.
Garcia is reportedly seeking “punitive damages for false imprisonment and intentional infliction of emotional distress.”
A missing 13-year-old girl has been found safe, though 700 miles away from home. It turns out the Texas teen had gotten into an argument with her parents about a boy she met online via Xbox and decided to run away. She snuck out her bedroom window, swiped her brother’s car, and set out for Kentucky to meet up with her 12-year-old beau, reports the Houston Chronicle.
A Tennessee state trooper pulled over the girl in Nashville after he noticed her car matched the description in an Amber Alert. Though a few years away from getting her learner’s permit, she somehow managed to navigate 700 miles cross-country. (She still had another 130 or so miles to go.) “It’s amazing she was able to manipulate the roadways,” says one officer. She was released to her parents, and no charges are expected to be filed.
What’s more ridiculous than the war on drugs itself? The plethora of strange draconian laws that have cropped up to support it.
Don’t believe it? Well, Mike Riggs of the libertarian Reason Magazine has come up with a list of the five most ridiculous ones. Judge for yourself:
- In Texas, you need state permission to buy chemistry equipment. Intended to clamp down on methamphetamines, this law restricts the sale of basic lab equipment like flasks, along with chemicals so common they occur naturally in fruit.
- In California, dispensaries pay for raids on dispensaries. Last year, Vallejo voters passed a law taxing medical marijuana, without legalizing it. The taxes have been used to raid the facilities paying them.
- In Florida, a handful of pills can land you three years in jail. Mandatory minimum sentencing laws in Florida are the nation’s “most egregious.” Four grams of opioid painkillers—just a couple pills—can get you three years in jail. And because the law counts both the active ingredient and any mixture containing it, a 12-ounce soda with 1 gram of cocaine in it counts as 12 ounces of cocaine.
Click to read the full list, which includes measures from Louisiana and New York.
You know you have just minutes to live. What do you say? If you’re about to be executed in Texas, you most often mention love, family, life, or God—and that you’re “sorry.”
Those are the words that most frequently pop up in the farewells of inmates before they’re put to death in the state. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice preserves every offender’s final statement from the last 30 years on its website, and there are plenty of statements to read through, because Texas has executed nearly 500 people since 1982.
The Los Angeles Timestakes a look. A sampling:
- “Tonight we tell the world that there are no second chances in the eyes of justice,” killer carjacker Napoleon Beazley said before he was executed in 2002.Tonight, we tell our children that in some instances, in some cases, killing is right. No one wins tonight. No one gets closure. No one walks away victorious.”
- Before 54-year-old Marvin Wilson, a man with an IQ of 61, was executed last week for killing a police informant, he said: “Y’all do understand that I came here a sinner and leaving a saint. Take me home, Jesus. I love y’all. I’m ready.”
- In 1985, cop killer Henry Porter asked: “You call me a cold-blooded murderer? I didn’t tie anyone to a stretcher. I didn’t pump any poison into anybody’s veins. I call this and your society a bunch of cold-blooded murderers.”
- Another cop killer, Charles William Bass, executed in 1986, was much harder on himself. “I deserve this,” he said. “Tell everyone I said goodbye.”
- Double murderer Rogelio Cannady told everyone present from his family that he loved them, then added as he faded: “I thought it was going to be harder than this. I am ready to go.”
- But killer rapist Rodrigo Hernandez said as he was being executed earlier this year: “This stuff stings. God almighty.”
Michael welcomes Francisco Gabriel Nila from The Common Man Show back to The Michael Show to discuss James Holmes, the pros of the death penalty, 2012 Election predictions and who should be Mitt Romney’s VP. Be sure to click the Like / Tweet buttons to help promote The Michael Show!
Help support the show by doing what you already do: shopping online. Check out The Michael Show’s sponsors HERE,including Adam and Eve and iTunes.
More than a fifth of adults in Colorado are fat, but it’s still the skinniest state in the nation, according to a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention map that highlights the scale of America’s obesity epidemic.
The CDC’s 2011 map, based on a continuous, wide-ranging series of surveys, shows that at least 20% of people in every state are obese, and in 12 states, more than 30% of people are obese, Wired reports. Obesity is most prevalent in Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and West Virginia.
Tennessee has dropped off the most obese list and Indiana has joined it, but the CDC warns that this year’s map can’t be directly compared with previous years because of some changes in methodology. States in the “fat belt” tend to be those with the highest rates of strokes and diabetes and lowest per-capita incomes, MedPage Today notes. Mississippi, America’s poorest state, is also its heaviest, with 34.9% obesity.
Michael welcomes Francisco Gabriel Nila from The Common Man Show to The Michael Show to discuss how awesome Texas is, California Unions, disgruntle grocery store cashiers, what women say they want vs. what the end up with, Tony Villar, and my boss, Mr. Cockingstein. Be sure to click the Like / Tweet buttons to help promote The Michael Show!
Help support the show by doing what you already do: shopping online. Check out The Michael Show’s sponsors HERE,including Adam and Eve and iTunes.
Two middle-school girls in Texas have been arrested after police say they created a Facebook page in a classmate’s name—and used it to fire off threats to other students.
The girls, ages 12 and 13, face third-degree felony charges for online impersonation, NBC Newsreports. The messages caused “the victim to endure threats from other students” and suffer social rejection, a sheriff’s statement says; the victim’s mother says the incident nearly prompted a “physical altercation.”
“This is similar in every way to identity theft,” the sheriff said. He noted that the victim was friends with the alleged perpetrators and “would like to forgive and forget.” Meanwhile, the ACLU has voiced concerns about the case, citing “hysteria” about social media from “people who don’t understand it.” “Increasingly, this is the case, if you misbehave at school, you get arrested. You don’t get suspension,” says a rep. Details of the messages are being kept quiet in the juvenile case.
A Texas prisoner diagnosed as mentally retarded is set for the death penalty—despite a 2002 US Supreme Court ruling barring mentally retarded people from execution. The court decision left states some leeway in carrying out executions, and Texas controversially continues to use its own definition of mental retardation, the Guardian notes. Marvin Wilson doesn’t fit that definition.
After extensive testing and interviews, a neuropsychologist diagnosed Wilson, who faces punishment for the killing of a police informant, with mental retardation. But Texas’ definition, which a disabilities advocacy group calls “impressionistic,” uses a character from John Steinbeck’s novel, Of Mice and Men, as a barometer for retardation.
The state did not conduct cognitive testing on Wilson. If he “is executed on Tuesday, Texas will be rendering the US Supreme Court’s Eighth Amendment prohibition on the execution of mentally retarded prisoners a prohibition in name only,” says Wilson’s lawyer, who is seeking to delay the execution so the matter can be considered.
When McAllen, Texas, found itself with an abandoned Walmart on its hands, it didn’t just bring in another store: It used the building to create a new library. And that library just so happens to be the largest single-story library in the country—and the winner of the International Interior Design Association’s 2012 Library Interior Design Competition.
PSFK has a number of pictures of the exceptional space, which includes a striking entrance, cheerful orange highlights, hip ceiling elements, and a special lounge for teens.
The McAllen Public Library now clocks in at 124,500 square feet, or about 2½ football fields, and has seen new-user registration increase 23% in the first month after opening. “In a city like McAllen, with cartel violence across the river”—the town is on the Mexico border—”I think it’s amazing that the city is devoting resources to a) not only saving a large and conspicuous piece of property from decline and vandalism, but b) diverting those resources into youth and the public trust,” a McAllen native tells theLos Angeles Times. “It’s easy to fall into drugs, drinking, and violence when you live on the border. It’s not really easy to find a place to hang out when you’re 14 that’s not the mall, the movies, or Mexico.”
Imagine being trapped in a small room without air-conditioning in 100-degree heat for days at a time. That’s the reality most Texas prisoners face, and now two lawsuits are taking the state to task for it.
One was filed yesterday by the wife of one of the four inmates who died of heat stroke or hyperthermia last year, the New York Times reports. (Advocates for inmates’ rights think the real toll is at least twice that.) The 345-pound man arrived at the hospital with an internal body temperature of 109.4 degrees.
“For this to happen to any human being is beyond my belief,” his son said. “There’s pets in pounds that have better conditions.” An appeal is also pending in a 2008 suit alleging “Death Valley-like conditions” at a South Texas prison, with the heat index topping 126 degrees for 10 days. Only 21 of the state’s 111 prisons are fully air-conditioned, but the prison agency says it takes steps to keep inmates cool, like using air blowers and allowing them to wear shorts.
A Texas father who beat a man to death when he found him molesting his 5-year-old daughter will not be charged. A grand jury reviewed the evidence and agreed with police that the 23-year-old dad used authorized deadly force to protect his daughter, CNNreports.
Jesus Mora Flores, 47, died due to “blunt force head and neck injury,” investigators found. Forensic evidence and witness statements corroborate the father’s story that his daughter was being sexually assaulted, according to the district attorney, who says she has “never seen a case this clear” in her career.
Authorities have released a 911 call in which the father pleads for help. “I need an ambulance. This guy was raping my daughter and I beat him up,” says the father, who becomes increasingly frazzled during the five-minute call. “Come on! This guy is going to die on me!” he shouts. “I don’t know what to do!”
Public opinion in the small town of Shiner, 80 miles east of San Antonio, is firmly on the father’s side, AP finds. He “has gone through enough,” one woman, a grandmother of nine, says. “He was protecting his family. Any parent would do that.”
A teacher in Texas is accused of sexting with a 15-year-old female student just days after he received his school’s award for “Teacher of the Year.” John McDaniel, 32, was taken into custody on the last day of school and charged with soliciting a minor online and engaging in improper relations with a student, reports NBC of Dallas/Fort Worth.
“The information we have is that there was some sexting going on, by way of the cellphone and some explicit emails,” says a local police sergeant. The girl’s brother apparently found one of the emails. McDaniel, the school’s band director, is free on a $10,000 bond and is on administrative leave from the school.
A Fort Worth, Texas woman, known only as Jessica, claims that a Walmart mechanic with “an attitude” scrawled satanic symbols, including the “Mark of the Beast,” on the bottom of her car during an oil change, CBS Dallas-Fort Worth reports.
Jessica says she only became aware of the symbols when a mechanic at a different Walmart later pointed them out, saying the blue sealant used to write them is common to Walmart car-servicing stations.
“Who does that?” Jessica told CBS Dallas-Fort Worth. “I mean, what if it’s a curse?”
Dallas judge Tonya Parker says she won’t be conducting any marriage ceremonies until she and every other gay person in Texas have the same right to marry.
When she turns straight couples away, Parker tells them: “I’m sorry. I don’t perform marriage ceremonies because we are in a state that does not have marriage equality, and until it does, I am not going to partially apply the law to one group of people that doesn’t apply to another group of people.” Parker passes the ceremonies on to other judges so the straights can get married.
“It’s kind of oxymoronic for me to perform ceremonies that can’t be performed for me, so I’m not going to do it,” Parker tells the Dallas Voice.
The Texas Committee on Judicial Ethics describes officiating at weddings as a “discretionary function” that must not interfere with “mandatory judicial duties,” so Parker—who was elected in 2010 to preside over Dallas’ 116th Civil District Court—can’t be accused of shirking her duties, notes the Dallas Morning News.
What happens when a reality star movies to radio?
Khloe Kardashian has just landed her very own radio show on Dallas’ MIX 102.9 from 12 to 1 p.m.!
The Dallas’ MIX operations manager at the station believes she will make a perfect host because she has “the perfect mix of personality and sincerity.”
Apparently, this is not Khloe’s first time on the air. She once hosted a radio program in Miami.
Prepare for The Mix Up with Khloé Kardashian Odom to hit the airwaves on January 30th!
Natalie Johnson noticed a teen she thought was male shopping for women’s clothing. When the customer headed to the women’s dressing rooms, Johnson stopped her. ”I had to just be straightforward and tell him, ‘You’re a man,’ and of course that really got him steamed,” she says.
The teen’s friends told Johnson that Macy’s lets transgender customers use the changing rooms for whichever gender they identify with, ABC News reports.
“I refuse to comply with this policy,” Johnson says. “There are no transgenders in the world. A guy can dress up as a woman all he wants. That’s still not going to make you a woman.” And “if you’re a man going into the women’s fitting room, I will kindly escort you to the men’s fitting room.”
Demi Lovato is well aware dating her can be hard.
She’s still recovering from her cutting and eating disorder, so she admits she comes with a little baggage. But she’s okay with that, and the man that stays around is gonna have to be too!
For Glamour, she explains what it takes to date her: ”Someone who’s not only supportive in my career but also in my recovery. It’s a big responsibility dating me. Because I come with a little bit of baggage, you know? I’m completely open. I’m honest about the journey I’ve been on, so I definitely don’t take dating lightly anymore. And they have to make me laugh!”
I think I am up to the challenge to
bang date Demi Lovato. I know she has her baggage but with boobs like these and hotness like this and more boobs like this – it’s well worth it. And if these posts weren’t enough to convince you, check out Demi Lovato’s recent on stage nip slip from her Dallas, Texas concert. Look closely, there is enough of it there.
A desperate mom denied food stamps for months shut herself in a Texas welfare office and shot her two children before killing herself. Her daughter, 12, and 10-year-old son are in very critical condition.
Rachelle Grimmer, 38, had recently moved from Ohio and had not completed the proper paperwork to obtain aid, said authorities. She was meeting with a caseworker in the Laredo welfare office when she pulled a gun.
Police negotiated with her for more than seven hours and she gradually released everyone from the office except for her children. A SWAT team moved in when they heard three shots, reports AP.
Food stamp applicants must fill out an 18-page file and provide proof of such things as employment or rent. The move from another state may have complicated Grimmer’s application process, said an official.
This works for me. This is a practice that should be seen in every state.
In what was labeled as a cost-cutting move, since April, some Texas prisons have stopped providing inmates with lunch on the weekend.
By not feeding inmates three meals a day on Saturday and Sunday, the Texas prison system thinks it will save upward of $2.8 million. Other ways the Texas Department of Criminal Justice plans to cut cost include replacing carton milk with a powder substitute and using regular bread for hamburger and hot dog buns, according to a report by the New York Times.
Last month Texas officials also did away with the age-old practice of providing inmates that are about to be executed with a last meal.
Texas has the third-highest teen birthrate in the nation. In fact, a Texas teen gets pregnant every 10 minutes, and teen childbearing costs the state’s taxpayers $1 billion annually.
A study out of the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston gives us the lowdown on the down-and-dirty. This by way of the Chron’s Mom Houston blog:
1. Almost one in 10 Texas 6th graders have had sex.
2. The percentage of Texas 7th and 8th graders who have had sex is 22 and 29 percent respectively.
3. Of high school-aged kids, 32 percent of 9th graders, 41 percent of 10th graders, 53 percent of 11th graders and 62 percent of 12th graders have had sex.
4. Just over one third of the entire public middle and high school population are sexually experienced.
5. Texas students are more likely to report having had sex with four or more partners and are less likely to have used birth control or condoms.
The results come from an analysis of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey, the CDC’s Middle School Youth Risk Behavior Survey and the University of Texas Prevention Research Center’s All About Youth study.
Wow. The results of this study are scary. Sex is something 6th grades should definitively not be doing. However, the question needs to be asked, “where are these kids parents when they are having sex?” Find a solution to that problem and 90% of issues will be solved.
It’s a tradition with roots that can be traced far back in history. Before being put to death, a condemned prisoner can choose his last meal.
Not anymore in Texas.
Officials stopped the practice in Texas after a prominent state senator complained about a hefty request from a man executed for his role in a notorious dragging death. Now, inmates get to eat only what the kitchen serves.
The controversy began after Lawrence Russell Brewer, who was executed for a hate crime slaying more than a decade ago, asked for two chicken fried steaks, a triple-meat bacon cheeseburger, fried okra, a pound of barbecue, three fajitas, a meat lover’s pizza, a pint of ice cream and a slab of peanut butter fudge with crushed peanuts. Prison officials said Brewer didn’t eat any of it.
“It is extremely inappropriate to give a person sentenced to death such a privilege,” Sen. John Whitmire, chairman of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee, wrote in a letter to Brad Livingston, the executive director of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Within hours, Livingston said the senator’s concerns were valid and the practice of allowing death row offenders to choose their final meal was history.
“Effective immediately, no such accommodations will be made,” Livingston said. “They will receive the same meal served to other offenders on the unit.”