Saturday, January 30, 2016

16-Year-Old Fatally Shot In Bolton Hill



According to Baltimore City Police, a 16 year old was found fatally shot Friday in the 300 block of McMechen Street in Bolton Hill. Police say they found the boy in an apartment building around 5:30 p.m. Friday.
Just before 6 p.m. Friday a 24 year old man was found shot in the 1200 block of Patterson park. He was transported to a local hospital where he died. 

1 Dead After Fatal Hit-And-Run In Baltimore


Police say a woman is dead after she was fatally struck by a car in Baltimore and that she may have been hit an hour before she was found.
Police say they were called to the 3300 block of West Northern Parkway on Saturday morning for a report of a pedestrian struck by a vehicle. Police say they found a 46-year-old woman who was injured. Police say she was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Police identified the woman as Tammy Sherill Aversa of Baltimore. Police say the incident is being investigated as a fatal hit-and-run and that they are looking for a 2001 to 2007 Ford Taurus or Mercury Sable in connection with Aversa's death.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Piles Of Snow Lead To Mounting Frustration


WBAL-TV is reporting that snowplow operators are still hard at work days after a record-breaking snowstorm dropped more than 2 feet of snow in the Baltimore area.
Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said it took the city 17 days to clear the streets after the snowstorms in 2010.
Beginning Wednesday, the city will start fining those who don't clear snow from sidewalks in business districts and gateway corridors.
Ordinarily home to horses, the area around Pimlico Race Track is where the city's big snow removal horsepower is on display. A snowmelter is at work, which can reduce 60 tons of snow to water per hour. It's also where the big snowblower on loan from Boston gets fueled and maintained.
It's part of the city's effort to throw everything it can get at clearing and removing a record amount of snow.
"That equipment is massive and it's very effective, but it's a big blower, so just like you were blowingyour sidewalk, you have to have somewhere to blow the snow. If it is a residential street, we can't use that blower," Rawlings-Blake said.
Few streets are back to normal. The 1400 block of North Fulton Street in west Baltimore has one lane clear. Residents who moved their cars to obey the Snow Emergency Route restriction said they wonder why no plow has been back.
The city said it has 1,400 pieces of equipment in use, most of it at extra cost from the private sector. And the city is looking for more help from private contractors.
"We are continuing to accept equipment as contractors are out there and equipment becomes available. The city of Baltimore remains open to business," said William Johnson, director of the Department of Transportation.
Suburban residents have also complained, saying they've called plenty of times to find out when snowplows are coming, only to get no response.

Clearing the walkway and driveway kept Marie Taylor busy Tuesday in Catonsville, but that didn't take her mind off the street where she lives, which is open at one end, but there's a wall of snow in the center that stretches down the block and beyond, leaving her and her neighbors frustrated.
"Nothing, no plows, nothing. We're still stuck. We haven't seen a plow yet," Taylor said. "No one can get out."
"It has been hectic. This is my first day back home since Friday morning. I haven't been able to get through here. So my job said, 'We're going to get you in.' They got me a vehicle and I got to the end of the road, and my son helped me down," said Schwann McInnis, of Catonsville. "If an emergency happened, what are we going to do? We can't go to the grocery store. It's just a bad situation right now."
"We've been calling. I have elderly residents that live on the block. What I did last night took two hours to cut a path so people could walk out of this block, because we didn't see any snowplows," said Ellis Dawson, of Pikesville.
The sight of a snowplow turned frustration into relief for residents on Crosby Road in Catonsville.
"The gentleman that just came by and cleared our street, I'm loving it. I want to tip him and say thank you for the job you're doing," said Margaret Morris.
Slowly getting back to normal, postal worker Lenny Schwarzmann was making deliveries Tuesday.
"It has been a challenge, but we're doing the best we can trying to get to everybody's house. Hopefully, they'll think of us and not just dig out their driveway, but make their mailboxes accessible to us," Schwarzmann said.
There was at least one problem on Sunday, when a private contractor with 11 pieces of equipment stopped working in the Granite community of Baltimore County because of equipment malfunctions due to the heavy snow. County officials said other equipment has since been sent in.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Baltimore Homeowners Start Facing Fines For Un-Shoveled Sidewalks


RadioOnFire.com - If you live in Baltimore City and your sidewalk hasn't been shoveled yet, you might want to get on that.
In a briefing Tuesday, housing Commissioner Paul Graziano says the city will start enforcing the sidewalk shoveling law tomorrow.
"The ordinance actually requires within six hours of the end of the storm," Graziano said. "We actually will be waiting three days, given the magnitude of the storm."
The law requires that the owner of any sidewalk-fronting home or business must clear a two-foot path and refrain from obstructing storm drains. Fines are $50 for residential properties, $100 for commercial ones. Enforcement, Graziano said, will start in the "main gateway corridors" and along bus routes.
However, in some parts of the city where residents are still digging themselves out, they're still waiting for the city to help with a plow. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake says the city has brought in 600 additional pieces of snow removal equipment from as far away as Canada to help. That includes two giant snowmelters that can melt 60 tons of snow per hour. 
William Johnson, the city's transportation director, says they are trying to prioritize those streets that are still waiting for their first plow pass. He says they are also targeting neighborhoods with schools so those schools can reopen.

Hogan Proposes Constitutional Amendment On Redistricting



RadioOnFire.com - Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, making good on a campaign promise, is proposing legislation to move the state to a nonpartisan redistricting process.

The legislation is based on recommendations from Hogan's bipartisan panel on redistricting. The administration is suggesting that a nonpartisan apportionment commission create the districts to replace the process that's historically been led by the governor's office.

“An overwhelming majority of Marylanders favor an independent, nonpartisan panel for redistricting over the existing biased process,” the Republican governor said in a release. “For too long, fair elections and a healthy, strong, and competitive two-party system have been nearly impossible in our state. This is about recognizing a problem and choosing to do the right thing to solve it.”

Democrats outnumber Republicans 2-to-1 in Maryland. However, only one Republican, Rep. Andy Harris, is among Maryland's eight House members. The most recent redistricting put more Washington-area Democrats in the 6th congressional district then represented by the retiring Republican Roscoe Bartlett. Democrat John Delaney, in the following election, edged out Republican Dan Bongino by less than 2 percent of the vote.

One congressional district, that represented by John Sarbanes, starts in western Baltimore County, swings into Overlea and through the city, then into Halethorpe and Olney, back around Fort Meade and into Annapolis. Sarbanes keeps district offices in Annapolis and Towson. A 2012 study, as noted by Maryland Reporter, found it to be one of the least compact in the nation.

Hogan is proposing a state constitutional amendment to change redistricting procedures for when it next takes place after the 2020 U.S. Census. The goal, Hogan's office says, is to craft state and federal election districts based on population, compactness and natural boundaries. That amendment would be put forward to state voters.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Hogan: State Will Apply For Federal Disaster Relief; State Offices To Close Monday


RadioOnFire.com - Gov. Larry Hogan warned that cleanup and recovery from the weekend's historic snowstorm will take days, and urged Maryland residents to continue to stay off the roads. 

Hogan said at a news conference late Sunday morning that even though the storm has passed and the sun is shining, roads remain "extremely treacherous." 

He says all mass and public transit remain offline, and said he would decide later Sunday whether state employees will need to report to their jobs on Monday. 

Hogan says Maryland has fared well so far, with no traffic fatalities in the storm, and fewer than 300 customers still without electricity, from a high of 10,000 during the height of the storm. 

He says he will apply for federal disaster relief.

Late today, Hogan announced that all state offices will be closed on Monday.  Essential personnel will be required to report to work.

CLICK HERE to read the governor's announcement.
The Department of Legislative services offices will open  at normal time on Monday.
According to the Maryland General Assembly website, employees who can do so safely should report to the office. Those who cannot may work at home with supervisor permission. Those who cannot get to work and cannot work should notify their supervisor and use leave. 
Maryland General Assembly offices will open at noon.
The House of Delegates and Senate will hold their regular session at 8 p.m.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Baltimore Mayor Rawlings-Blake: Big Storm 'Requires Patience'


Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake says Baltimore may have been more prepared for a snowstorm than ever before, but "a storm of this magnitude requires patience."
Rawlings-Blake said a news briefing Saturday that the city has made many improvements since 2010's "Snowmageddon," adding more private contractors to snow clearing efforts. She says it's a big city and people shouldn't worry if they haven't seen plows yet.
Department of Transportation Director William Johnson says all plows are out. He says crews saw snowfall rates of up to 2 inches an hour and another big burst is expected Saturday evening.
Fire Chief Niles Ford says crews have been using Humvees to retrieve some patients. He says there was a fatal fire, but firefighters didn't have trouble reaching the home and it wasn't storm-related.

Friday, January 22, 2016

BGE Tells Customers To Brace For Outages


Baltimore Gas and Electric officials say the utility is ready for outages caused by this weekend's snow.
BGE will have 900 contractors supplementing its 3,200 employees in staging areas and regional command centers.

“Safety is a priority at BGE and we want our customers to remain safe by preparing for this weekend’s winter storm in the event there are power outages,” Robert Biagiotti, BGE vice president and chief customer officer, said in a release.
Outages can be reported by phone at 1-877-778-2222, on BGE's website and using mobile devices. Even if your electricity comes from another provider, if BGE services your area, they are still the company to call for outage issues.

Looming Blizzard Could Rank Near Top 10 To Hit Eastern US


The blizzard menacing the Eastern United States could rank near the top 10 to ever hit the region, according to the National Weather Service.
Snowfall as heavy as 1 to 3 inches an hour could continue for 24 hours or more in the area, said meteorologist Paul Kocin with the service's Weather Prediction Center. That puts estimates at more than 2 feet for Washington, a foot to 18 inches for Philadelphia and 8 inches to a foot in New York.
CLOSINGS AND DELAYS | WEATHER RADAR | CURRENT CONDITIONS | TRAFFIC CONDITIONS | LISTEN LIVE
Kocin compared the storm it to "Snowmageddon," the first of two storms that "wiped out" Washington in 2010 and dumped up to 30 inches of snow in places, but he said the weekend timing and days of warning could help limit deaths and damage.
At a supermarket in Baltimore, Sharon Brewington stocked her cart with ready-to-eat snacks, bread, milk and cold cuts. In 2010, she and her daughter were stuck at home with nothing but noodles and water.
"I'm not going to make that mistake again," she said.
As food and supplies vanished from store shelves, five states and the District of Columbia declared states of emergency ahead of the slow-moving system. Schools and government offices closed pre-emptively. Thousands of flights were canceled. College basketball games and concerts were postponed.
The snowfall, expected to continue from late Friday into Sunday, could easily cause more than $1 billion in damage and paralyze the Eastern third of the nation, weather service director Louis Uccellini said.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Baltimore City Selects Firm for Body Cameras


The Baltimore police department has announced that Taser International will provide body cameras to its officers. 

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said at a news conference Tuesday that officers will be equipped with Taser International's Axon body cameras, one of three types of cameras that were part of a pilot program involving 155 officers from three police districts that began in October. 

"One mistake can cost the taxpayers millions," said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. "There's a difference between urgency and haste, but I wanted to make sure that Baltimore did not end up with a boondoggle, wasting taxpayer money." 

Davis said officers provided scores for the cameras they tested out and shared overwhelmingly positive feedback about their experiences wearing cameras. 

"Everyone is waiting to see if this big police department get this right," said Commissioner Kevin Davis. "So far, police officers are telling me this has been a positive thing to have on the street." 

The price proposal from Taser will be unsealed at a Board of Estimates meeting Wednesday. The exact amount that will be allocated for the program will likely be negotiated. 

Rawlings-Blake said the final contract will be voted on by the end of February.

Source WBAL

Former WBAL Anchor Alan Walden Announces Intent To Run For Mayor


RadioOnFire.com - Alan Walden, the retired morning news anchor for WBAL NewsRadio 1090, is running for mayor.
Walden, who hosted WBAL's morning show from 1988 to 1998, said Tuesday he's filed to run as a Republican in the mayoral primary in April.
"It's something that I felt compelled to do. I've been thinking about it for several months, I've discussed it with a number of people," Walden said.
Only one other candidate has filed for the Republican nomination: Brian Charles Vaeth. Four Republicans have filed for various council seats. Baltimore hasn't elected a Republican mayor since Theodore R. McKeldin, who left office in 1967. Walden isn't bothered by the long odds.
"I believe I can carry to the voters... a message that will give them the kind of hope that is required to establish the city as the great place it truly is," he said. "I am convinced that the good people of the city of Baltimore are willing to listen to a new voice with a new message."
Shortly after becoming anchor of WBAL's morning news, he began his daily commentaries called Walden Ponderings. Those ran well after he hung up his microphone, and he crafted a post-broadcasting career in voicing commercials, some of which run on WBAL. WBAL was the last stop of a five-decade career that included time as a reporter, anchor and news director in Boston, Cleveland and New York.

Source WBAL

As Likely Snowstorm Nears, Baltimore Health Officials Declare Code Blue


The first major snowstorm of the winter could be coming to Maryland this weekend.
WBAL-TV 11 Insta-Weather PLUS Meteorologist Ava Marie said temperatures will not get out of the 20s on Tuesday. The more serious weather could come by the weekend.
Marie said computer models continue to agree on a major nor’easter tracking up the East Coast Friday night through Saturday.
Four days out, the timing and track are still uncertain, which means model forecasted snow amounts are still unreliable. However, confidence is growing for heavy snow, possibly double-digit accumulations, somewhere in Maryland, Marie said.
Marie said right now, models place Baltimore on the eastern edge of the bullseye. Areas that mix with rain and sleet could get significantly less snow. Other dangers with this storm include strong winds and coastal flooding.
A Code Blue declaration has been extended for Baltimore City through Wednesday morning as dangerously cold temperatures are predicted through the day, officials said. The Code Blue has been in effect since Monday.
“Extreme cold temperatures can permanently injure, or even kill. Hypothermia, or low body temperature, can be just as dangerous as extreme heat, so it is important to stay indoors in heated areas,” Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said in a statement. “Now is the time when neighbors should be checking on each other. We are especially concerned about our most vulnerable residents, including the elderly, children, and people with chronic medical conditions.”
The health commissioner may declare a Code Blue alert when temperatures, including wind chill, are expected to be 13 degrees or below, or when other conditions are severe enough to present a substantial threat to the life or health of vulnerable Baltimore citizens.
Code Blue indicates an increased risk for cold injuries or even death for those exposed to low temperatures. Once a Code Blue declaration is made, public messaging activities are undertaken to encourage safety when outdoors and response partners work to ensure those in need find sheltering. During the Code Blue season, which began Nov. 16 and lasts until March 15, city agencies work together to do the following:
- Distribute meals to at-risk senior citizens.
- Provide home weatherization services.
- Help individuals apply for emergency assistance.
- Provide additional cold weather education and outreach efforts, as needed throughout the Code Blue season.
The Mayor's Office of Human Services' Office of Homeless Services also works with city homeless shelter providers to extend shelter hours and to provide expanded bed capacity. Last winter, the state Medical Examiner's Office recorded 12 hypothermia-related deaths in Baltimore City.
Cold weather tips for staying healthy:
- Wear multiple layers of loose-fitting clothing.
- Always wear a head covering, like a hat and/or scarf, when outdoors.
- Drink plenty of fluids and avoid alcoholic beverages.
- Protect yourself against falls in icy or snowy conditions.
- Check on those who are children, the elderly and/or chronically ill.
- Provide appropriate shelter for domestic animals.
Other tips for keeping safe in cold weather:
- Keep space heaters and candles away from flammable materials, such as curtains, furniture and loose clothing.
- Check your carbon monoxide detector and make sure it’s working.
- Do not use prohibited heat or power sources, such as stoves or generators. They may cause fire or carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Do not leave your car running in a closed space such as a garage.
Residents are encouraged to call 311 if a neighbor is without heat or power so that city agencies can assist them. Energy assistance may be available to those who need it. For more information, individuals may contact one of the regional Community Action Partnership centers in Baltimore or call the Office of Home Energy Programs at 410-396-5555.
For more information about Code Blue, visit the Health Department's website.
For other cold-related inquiries and service requests, or to find a nearby homeless shelter, residents can call 311 or 211.

Source WBAL

Sunday, January 17, 2016

5 Schools Getting $300K Federal Grant


The U.S. Department of Education on Thursday gave more than $290,000 to five Baltimore City schools affected by the April unrest following the death of Freddie Gray. 

The grant was given through the Department of Education's Project School Emergency Response to Violence Program. 

Each school will receive about $60,000. The principal of one of the schools hopes this is just the start. 

"My hope is that there's a strategic, long-term approach, and dedication to our neighborhood and our families that will be long-term planning that will move pas this election year," Matthew A. Henson Elementary School principal Dave Guzman said. 

The money will allow schools to hire more full-time social workers and psychologists to support the students, their family and faculty members.

Source WBAL

Friday, January 15, 2016

Three Officers Accused In 2015 Assault On Juvenile


Two Baltimore police officers have been indicted and one more has been charged on a criminal summons for an assault on a juvenile.
The assault happened on Jan. 14, 2015, and results of an investigation were sent to the state's attorney's office.
Duane Williams Jr., a seven-year veteran, is charged with second-degree child abuse, second-degree assault and misconduct in office. Lonnie White Jr., a two-year veteran, is charged with perjury and misconduct in office. Bijay Ranabhat, who received the summons and is a two-year veteran.
Criminal misconduct by police officers is an insult to the good and noble work our police officers do every hour of every day,” Commissioner Kevin Davis said in a release. “Our internal investigation revealed criminal misconduct and we brought the case to the state’s attorney’s Ooffice.”
All are suspended. Williams is suspended without pay.
Earlier this week, Davis announced reforms to his department's internal affairs.
"Here's the bottom line with discipline: I will not allow anyone to embarrass or disrespect the hard working men and women of the Baltimore Police Department," Davis said then. "I will defend cops when they're right and train and counsel cops when they make mistakes while trying to do the right thing. And if I have to, I will discipline, fire and criminally charge officers who betray their fellow police officers and our community."

Source WBAL

Thursday, January 14, 2016

3 Maryland $1 Million Dollar Powerball Winners

While there was no one in Maryland who won the world-record $1.6 billion jackpot, there are some big winners in the state.
Officials say Maryland didn't have a big jackpot winner after Wednesday night's drawing, but three second-tier winning tickets were sold in the state. Those tickets were sold at a Wawa on Urbana Pike in Frederick, an Amoco on Walker Mill Road in Capitol Heights and a 7-Eleven on Annapolis Road in Bladensburg.
The unprecedented jackpot will be split three ways. The winners' identities are still a mystery, but the winning tickets were sold in Florida, Tennessee and a Los Angeles suburb. The numbers drawn Wednesday night are 4-8-19-27-34 and Powerball 10.
There were 561,297 tickets across Maryland that won prizes as little as $4.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Police Say They Have Suspect In West Baltimore Rape, Shooting


Baltimore police say a suspect has been arrested in the rape and shooting of a 20-year-old woman in West Baltimore.
The victim was seriously injured in the Saturday night attack. Police on Monday issued a plea for community help and, as TJ Smith told C4 on Wednesday, they got it.
"The community rallied around...all hitting on streets, knocking on doors," Smith said. "We were able to link this person to the crime."
Smith said that within 24 hours, community members, clergy and police were able to identify that suspect.
"We want the community more than anything to know that we appreciate them and that that bad guy is not going to be in a position to harm any more women anytime soon," Smith said.
The suspect has not yet been identified, but Smith said a press conference will be held later Wednesday.

Source WBAL

Monday, January 11, 2016

Goodson Trial Will Be Delayed


The trial of Baltimore City Police Officer Caesar Goodson has been delayed, by order of the Maryland Court of Special Appeals.
CLICK HERE to read the order from the Court of Special Appeals.
Jury selection was supposed to begin at Porter's trial today, but Judge Barry Williams announced a recess in the case.
This morning, Judge Peter Krauser, Chief Judge of the Maryland Court of Special Appeals, issued a two page order calling for the delay.
On Friday, the Court of Special Appeals is considering whether Officer William Porter should be forced to testify for the state at Goodson's trial.
Porter's attorneys  say forcing their client to testify violates his Fifth Amendment rights, and subjects him to a possible perjury, or contempt of court charges, as Porter faces a retrial in June.
Prosecutors argue Porter was being offered immunity for his testimony, and that would prevent Porter from beign charged with perjury.
A court spokeswoman says Judge Krauser will set a deadline for both sides to file written arguments, then the Court of Special Appeals will hold a hearing to consider oral arguments.
There is no deadline for the Court of Special Appeals to rule on this case, so the Goodson trial is delayed until then.  
A Court of Appeals decision would also impact the start of the trial of Sgt. Alicia White, which is set for February 8, because prosecutors are trying to force Porter to testify at that trial.  
Porter is not being forced to testify in the trials of the three other accused officers, Edward Nero, Garrett Miller and Brian Rice.  
Those trials are scheduled for Late February and early March.
In court today, Judge Williams noted that prosecutors had asked for a continuance to delay this trial, but Judge Williams said that issue is "moot."
Attorneys in this case are barred from commenting on any ruling due to a gag order imposed by the judge.
At 46, Caesar Goodson is the oldest of the six accused officers. 
He also faces the most serious charges including second degree murder depraved heart which carries an up to 30 year prison sentence.
Goodson is also charged with manslaughter, second degree assault, manslaughter auto or boat, criminally negligent manslaughter, misconduct in office, and reckless endangerment.
Goodson drove the van that carried Freddie Gray to the Western District, on April 12.
Prosecutors say Gray suffered his fatal injuries while in the van.
Unlike the other five accused  officers, Goodson never gave a statement to internal affairs investigators about Gray's arrest, so if he takes the stand, there’s nothing prosecutors can use to compare statements. 
Prosecutors are expected to focus part of their case on when Goodson stopped the van when it reached Mount and North Freemont Streets, and checked on Gray.  Goodson was the only officer to check on Gray at this stop, and it was around this stop where the prosecution believed Gray was injured because he was not placed in a  seat belt.  
Prosecutors are expected to present other witnesses, including Dr. Carol Allan, the assistant medical examiner who performed Gray's autopsy, and concluded the manner of his death was homicide.  Last week, Goodson's attorney failed to convince Judge Williams that Allan shouldn't testify.  Goodson's attorney argued Allan was not qualified to determine Gray's death was a homicide.
The prosecution is also expected to call retired Maryland State Police Maj. Neill Franklin, who is considered to be an expert in developing procedures for transporting prisoners.
Like the Porter trial, jurors will get a chance to inspect the van that transported Gray.  That inspection will take place in the courthouse garage.

Baltimore Police: 2 Teens Charged In Fatal Stabbing, Robbery


Baltimore police say two teens have been charged as adults in the stabbing death of 29-year-old man during a robbery.
Police announced the teens' arrests in a news release Sunday night. Police say officers called to Old York Road and Venable Avenue in the Waverly area on Saturday night found Robert Ponsi stabbed multiple times. He was later pronounced dead at a hospital.
The Baltimore Sun reports that Ponsi, a server at the James Joyce Pub in Harbor East, was on his bicycle when he was stabbed during a robbery.
Police say 17-year-old Antwan Eldridge and 16-year-old Daquan Middleton are charged as adults with first-and second-degree murder, armed robbery and assault. They say detectives are looking to identify more suspects.

Source WBAL

Friday, January 8, 2016

Powerball Jackpot Hiked Again, Now To $800M


The Powerball jackpot, already a U.S. record, has been hiked again. It's now $800 million with a $496 million cash option.
The cash option would be $328.6 million after taxes, according to a lottery spokeswoman.
This morning, the director of the Maryland Lottery told Bryan Nehman on Maryland's Morning News that he thinks the jackpot could cross $1 billion before the drawing Saturday night. Be sure to catch that drawing at 10:59 p.m. on WBAL NewsRadio 1090 or WBAL-TV 11.

Owings Mills Double Shooting Leaves 1 Dead, 1 Injured


Baltimore County Police are reporting that one person has been killed in a double shooting in Owings Mills. Police say they were call to investigate a shooting came into police around 10:43 p.m. on Thursday night.
Both victims were taken to the hospital. Baltimore County Police later tweeted that one of the victims had died.
Police are still investigating and searching for a suspect.

Source WBAL

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Judge Says Porter Must Testify At Goodson's Trial


Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams ruled Officer William Porter can be ordered to testify in the trials of Officer Caesar Goodson and Sgt. Alicia White. The three are among six Baltimore police facing charges in the death of Freddie Gray.
While Barry Williams denied a motion by Porter's attorney to quash his subpoena, it's a mixed victory for the state. Porter's first trial ended last month in a hung jury. Williams warned prosecutors they risk their chances of retrying Porter, because Porter will have immunity for anything he says on the stand in either trial. In any case, Porter testified he plans to invoke his Fifth Amendment rights in both cases.
Porter attorney Gary Proctor urged Williams to sign his orders regarding the testimony immediately, citing his own plans to seek a permanent injunction Thursday at the Court of Special Appeals in Annapolis.
---
Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams says he will allow defense attorneys to present "relevant" evidence of Freddie Gray's medical and criminal, at the trial of Baltimore City Police Officer Caesar Goodson. 
Goodson was the driver of the transport van that carried Freddie Gray to the Western District when he was arrested on April 12. It was in that van, where prosecutors believe that Gray suffered his fatal injuries. He died a week later.
Goodson is charged with second-degree murder, depraved heart and six other offenses.

Source WBAL

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Settlement Reached In "Sex For Repairs" Lawsuit


The details are not known, but WBAL NewsRadio 1090 confirms a settlement has been reached in the "sex for repairs" lawsuit filed against the Baltimore City Housing Authority by 19 women who lived in public housing.

The federal class action lawsuit alleged that maintenance staff of the housing authority demanded sex from the women who were seeking repair work on their apartments.
Each plaintiff has been seeking $10-million.
"The parties have reached a settlement subject to approval by HUD and the Court," plaintiffs attorney Cary Hansel and the Housing Authority said in a joint statement issued Monday night.
Both city officials and Hansel declined to comment on the details of the settlement.
However, Hansel told WBALNewsRadio 1090, once a formal notice of the settlement is issued, he expects other women to come forward to try to get a share of the settlement and the size of that class could grow from anywhere from 75 to 200 people.
He says that is standard procedure in a class action, for other plaintiffs to come forward once a settlement is reached. 
The lawsuit was filed in October by residents of Gilmor Homes, Westport and Govans Manor.

Michigan Politicians Kneel During City Council Meeting

RadioOnFire.com - A group of city officials made headlines in Ann Arbor Michigan this week when they observed the National Anthem by taki...