TIME Crime

Prison Escapee David Sweat Is Back in Jail

Escaped Prisoners david sweat
AP Police stand over David Sweat after he was shot and captured near the Canadian border June 28, 2015, in Constable, N.Y.

Sweat was shot and captured last week

New York prison escapee David Sweat, who was shot and captured last week after a weeks-long manhunt, has been discharged from the hospital and moved to a new maximum security prison, officials said on Sunday.

Sweat was moved overnight from the Albany Medical Center to the Five Points Correctional Facility in Romulus, a town of 4,000-some people in central New York, CNN reports. The Five Points Correctional Facility is about 200 miles southwest of the Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, where Sweat and his fellow inmate, Richard Matt, escaped on June 6. Matt was shot dead by police on June 26, two days before police shot and captured Sweat.

Sweat is being evaluated in the infirmary, after which he will be transferred to a “single cell” in a 23-hour confinement facility, officials said. He has also been placed on suicide watch in a cell officials said is designed to “limit movement.”

Two prison workers have been arrested in connection with the escape, while a dozen prison officials, including the prison chief, have been placed on administrative leave.

[CNN]

 

TIME Crime

‘Wheelchair Bandit’ Arrested After New York Heist

Wheelchair Bank Robber new york city
NYPD—AP In this June 29, 2015 photo provided by the New York Police Department, a man gets away after he robbed the Santander bank in the Queens borough of New York.

Kelvin Dennison, 23, said he was using the wheelchair after being shot

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City man in a wheelchair has been arrested two days after he pocketed $1,212 in a daytime bank robbery, authorities announced Friday.

Kelvin Dennison, 23, was picked up by officers at a hospital two days after he rolled into a Santander Bank branch in Queens Monday afternoon and claimed to be armed, police said.

“Give me all you have,” he told a teller, according to court papers. “I have a gun.”

The teller then passed him the cash before he pushed himself out of the bank and then fled down the street in his wheelchair, police said. Authorities released an image of a man in a wheelchair leaving the bank taken from a store’s surveillance camera.

When Dennison went to a Queens hospital two days later, someone recognized him and called police, prosecutors said. Authorities didn’t say why Dennison went to the hospital.

When he was questioned by investigators, Dennison told them he was in a wheelchair after being injured in a shooting, a spokeswoman for the Queens district attorney’s office told the New York Times (http://nyti.ms/1HD7Hok).

Dennison was charged with robbery and is being held on $15,000 bail. Attempts to reach his attorney for comment on Friday were unsuccessful.

TIME Crime

Trump Says San Francisco Shooting Proves Him Right on Immigration

Killing of Kathryn Steinle at Pier 14 "yet another example of why we must secure our border"

Donald Trump said the fatal shooting of a young woman at a popular San Francisco tourist spot was further proof the U.S. needs to crack down on border control, his latest in a string of controversial comments about immigration policy.

Kathryn Steinle, 32, was gunned down at Pier 14 in San Francisco on Wednesday. San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr told NBC Bay Area that the suspect arrested in the shooting — Francisco Sanchez — had “made an admission” with regards to the seemingly random shooting.

Trump seized on the killing on Friday to tout his immigration views after it emerged that …

Read more from our partners at NBC News

 

TIME Crime

Prison Escapee Sent Letter to Daughter Right Before Breakout, Report Says

Convicted Murderers Escape From New York State Prison
Handout—Getty Images In this handout from New York State Police, convicted murderer Richard Matt (R) is shown.

"I always promised you I would see you on the outside"

The prison escapee who was shot and killed by police reportedly sent his daughter a letter shortly before breaking out of Clinton Correctional Facility in upstate New York.

The Buffalo News, citing unnamed law enforcement officials, reported that Richard Matt wrote to his daughter, “I always promised you I would see you on the outside. I’m a man of my word.” The letter was postmarked before June 6, the day Matt and fellow prisoner David Sweat were discovered missing, and the letter reached its destination on June 9.

For her protection, Matt’s daughter has not been identified. The prisoners’ alleged conspirator, prison employee Joyce Mitchell, texted the daughter several times before the breakout with updates about how Matt was doing in prison, according to reports. The daughter was unaware of the escape plans.

[Buffalo News]

TIME celebrities

Hulk Hogan Sex Tape Trial Delayed After Appeals Court Intervenes

2015 Susan G. Komen D.C. Race For The Cure
Kris Connor—WireImage/Getty Images WWE Legend Hulk Hogan attends the 2015 Susan G. Komen D.C. Race for the Cure at The National Mall on May 9, 2015 in Washington DC.

Amid a flurry of motions, a Florida appeals court orders a slowdown on a trial that was previously scheduled to begin on July 6

A Florida appeals court has halted a trial that was scheduled to begin on Monday between Hulk Hogan and Gawker Media over the publishing of the celebrity’s sex tape.

Responding to an emergency motion by Gawker on Thursday, three judges at the Florida Second District Court of Appeal ruled the trial judge had violated a rule of civil procedure by moving ahead with the trial too soon after pleadings in the case.

“Although we easily understand why [Terry] Bollea [Hogan’s real name] and the circuit court went to lengths to preserve the July 6 trial date, their efforts were futile from the outset — by the time the court entered its June 19 order scheduling the trial for July 6, the window for doing so had been closed for weeks,” states a 14-page opinion.

This is the second time that the Florida appeals court has thrown some cold water on the rulings of County Judge Pamela Campbell. Earlier in the case, an injunction order that required Gawker to remove its post was overturned as an unconstitutional prior restraint.

Nevertheless, Hogan has been allowed to move ahead on claims his privacy and publicity rights were violated through the posting of an excerpt of a 30-minute sex tape involving the professional wrestler. The judge has allowed him to amend his claims to add punitive damages. Hogan has demanded as much as $100 million.

Gawker looks to raise a defense that its post was newsworthy given discussion of a possible affair and Hogan’s own comments in the media. It’s not altogether clear how much the First Amendment will factor into the actual trial. The media company’s constitutional arguments that Hogan’s claims are precluded by free speech may have to await appellate review once a jury issues its verdict. The trial would likely examine how Gawker got the tape, what it knew about it, how it used it to its advantage, and Hogan’s injuries. More clarification about what Hogan will have to prove should come once the judge resolves jury instructions.

In the meantime, the trial will be delayed, and once it gets going, the sex tape will be aired in court. But thanks to a decision by Campbell on Wednesday, the sex tape will only be shown to the jury, judge and attorneys in the case. Over the objections of Gawker and intervening media companies, the monitor will be turned away from the public gallery in the courtroom.

No new trial date has been set yet.

This article originally appeared on HollywoodReporter.com

TIME celebrities

Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs Won’t Face Felony Charges Over UCLA Scuffle

Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic/Getty Images Producer Sean Combs attends the premiere of Dope at The Regal Cinemas L.A. Live on June 8, 2015, in Los Angeles, Calif.

Sean “Diddy” Combs won’t face felony assault and battery charges stemming from his dispute with a UCLA football coach last month.

Prosecutors declined to file felony charges related to his June 22 arrest, Ricardo Santiago, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office, confirmed to PEOPLE on Thursday. “The case was referred to the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office for misdemeanor filing considerations,” he said in an email.

Combs, 45, whose son Justin is a member of the college’s football team, got into a heated altercation with a strength and conditioning coach, allegedly swinging a kettle bell weight during the skirmish.

He was arrested on suspicion of three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, making criminal threats and battery.

A spokesman for the music mogul later released a statement saying that “any actions taken by Mr. Combs were solely defensive in nature to protect himself and his son.”

This article originally appeared on People.com

TIME Crime

Scientist Who Faked HIV Vaccine Research Sentenced to Prison

Dong-Pyou Han AIDS research
Charlie Neibergall—AP In this July 1, 2014 file photo, former Iowa State University researcher Dong-Pyou Han leaves the federal courthouse in Des Moines, Iowa.

He was sentenced to more than 4 ½ years in prison

(DES MOINES, Iowa)—A former Iowa State University scientist who altered blood samples to make it appear he had achieved a breakthrough toward a potential vaccine against HIV was sentenced Wednesday to more than 4 ½ years in prison for making false statements in research reports.

Dong-Pyou Han, 58, also must pay $7.2 million to a federal government agency that funded the research. He entered a plea agreement in February admitting guilt to two counts of making false statements.

Government prosecutors said Han’s misconduct dates to 2008 when he worked at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland under professor Michael Cho, who was leading a team testing an experimental HIV vaccine on rabbits. Cho’s team began receiving NIH funding, and he soon reported the vaccine was causing rabbits to develop antibodies to HIV, which was considered a major breakthrough. Han said he initially accidentally mixed human blood with rabbit blood making the potential vaccine appear to increase an immune defense against HIV, the virus that can cause AIDS. Han continued to spike the results to avoid disappointing Cho, his mentor, after the scientific community became excited that the team could be on the verge of a vaccine.

Iowa State recruited Cho in 2009, and his team — including Han — continue the research with NIH funding. A group of researchers at Harvard University found in January 2013 the promising results had been achieved with rabbit blood spiked with human antibodies.

Han’s attorney Joseph Herrold, a federal public defender, asked for probation instead of prison.

“Here, there is little reason to believe that Dr. Han has not already been deterred from any future criminal conduct. His conduct is aberrational in an otherwise admirable life,” Herrold wrote in a sentencing report filed Monday. “He regrets the hurt he has caused to his friends and colleagues, the damage he has caused to government funded scientific research, and the pain he has caused any members of the public who had high hopes based on his falsehood.”

Herrold said Han has lost the ability to work in his field of choice and is likely to be deported by immigration officials “and possibly never permitted to return,” separating him from his wife and two adult children who are U.S. citizens. Han, who was born in Seoul, South Korea, is a lawful permanent U.S. resident.

Government prosecutors sought prison time to serve as a deterrent to Han and others who might consider research fraud.

“It is important that we stand up not just for punishing the fraud committed against the United States government, but for the research that should be legitimately taking place on this devastating disease,” U.S. Attorney Nicholas A. Klinefeldt said in a statement.

Judge James Gritzner sentenced Han to 57 months in prison and three years of supervision upon release. Han must repay the National Institutes of Health $7.2 million.

Cho’s team continues to work on the vaccine at ISU and has subsequently obtained funding.

TIME Crime

Sister of South Carolina Shooter Crowdfunds For Cancelled Wedding

Funds will be for "dream honeymoon," but she'll donate 10% to A.M.E. Church

When Dylann Roof allegedly killed nine people at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, S.C., last month, he didn’t just destroy families and prompt a national reckoning with the racial legacy of the Confederate flag. He also ruined his sister’s wedding, which was scheduled for four days later.

Dylann Roof’s sister Amber was scheduled to marry her fiancee Michael Tyo on June 21, according to a registry on TheKnot.com. Amber Roof was the one who called authorities after she saw her brother’s face on the surveillance footage from the church, the Washington Post reports, and Roof’s fiance Tyo lives in Shelby, N.C,, near where Roof was captured.

The wedding was cancelled because of the massacre, but Amber and her fiancee had started a GoFundMe page to help them recoup lost wedding expenses and go on a “dream honeymoon.” The website was live as of Thursday morning, but had been deleted by early Thursday afternoon.

The GoFundMe page called “A Fresh Start for Michael and Amber” appeared to have been created by Amber Roof. On it, she wrote:

As many of you know Michael and I had to abruptly cancel our wedding day, due to the tragedy that occurred in Charleston. June 21st was suppose to be the happiest day of our lives. It is the day every girl dreams of, it was the day we dreamed of. We had each other, we have the perfect venue, and we had our vows ready to be read. We were ready! We had planned out every detail for months and months. It was going to be the PERFECT day!

Our wedding day was suppose to be the most important and special day of our lives. It was suppose to start our lives together with our new family. Our day was the exact opposite. Our wedding day was full of sorrow, pain, and shame, tainted by the actions of one man…

We cancelled our wedding to protect our family and mourn the lives of those lost…

She noted that “money cannot replace the wedding we lost and our perfect day, however it will help us to create new memories and a new start with our new family.” Roof wrote that she wants to start her new family on a “positive note.”

Money raised will be used to cover lost wedding costs, to pay bills, and to send us on our dream honeymoon. 10% of all funds raised will be donated to Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

The page had raised just over $1,500 of the $5,00o requested before it was taken down Thursday afternoon.

TIME Crime

Police Report ‘All Clear’ at Washington Navy Yard

Employee thought she heard gunshots but was mistaken

The Washington Navy Yard was on lockdown Thursday morning after reports of shots being fired, just two years after a gunman killed 12 people at the military base.

But after a heavy police and FBI response, local authorities said there was no evidence of a shooting and restrictions on movement were lifted. Law enforcement officials said in a news conference that they received a call from an employee who thought she heard gunshots, and executed a “smooth, well-coordinated response.”

“This is an employee who did exactly what we ask them to do,” D.C. police chief Cathy Lanier said of the caller. “We have no concerns that this was a hoax whatsoever.”

The affected area was smoothly evacuated, and law enforcement executed a protocol that they say resemble the response to the active shooter incident in September 2013, when Aaron Alexis, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, shot and killed 12 people before being shot dead by authorities.

TIME Crime

Two Former CNN Reporters Got Into a Motel Gunfight With a Suspected Intruder

Albuquerque Motel Shootings
Adolphe Pierre-Louis—Albuquerque Journal/AP An Albuquerque Police Department officer collects evidence after a man was killed and another injured during what police say was an altercation between the two at a Motel 6 in Albuquerque, N.M. on June 30, 2015

One person was killed and another hospitalized with gunshot wounds

Chuck de Caro and his wife Lynne Russell got more than they bargained for when they stopped at an Albuquerque Motel 6 on June 30 during a cross-country road trip.

A man allegedly forced his way into the room that the former CNN special assignments correspondent and former Headline News anchor were sharing after Russell went to retrieve something from her car around midnight, CNN reports.

The man held Russell at gunpoint, she said, and was going through the couple’s valuables when de Caro opened fire using one of the couple’s two guns, which his wife had retrieved from a side table and passed him surreptitiously in her purse. A firefight ensued, and both de Caro and the intruder were hit.

The suspected intruder died at the hospital; de Caro, who sustained three bullet wounds to the leg and torso, is expected to make a full recovery. The couple maintain that both of the guns they used in self-defense were legal, and Albuquerque police spokesman Fred Duran told CNN he did not expect any charges to be filed.

[CNN]

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