Monthly Archives: March 2008

FORMER HARRIS COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY CHUCK ROSENTHAL FOUND IN CONTEMPT OF COURT!

$18,000 FINE FROM THE FEDERAL JUDGE FOR DESTROYING EMAILS!

Federal Judge Kennethy Hoyt has found former Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal in contempt of court. Rosenthal admitted to destroying hundreds of emails attorneys in a related civil case requested under subpoena. Rosenthal turned over only a portion of the emails that lead to his resignation. Those emails contained racist jokes and sexually explicit pictures and comments. In finding Rosenthal in contempt Judge Hoyt ordered him to pay $18,000 in fines!

THE LADIES HAD LUNCH AT NEIMAN MARCUS!

A GOOD CAUSE, LUNCH AND THE ENSEMBLE THEATRE BROUGHT THEM TOGETHER!







Several women and supporters of the Ensemble Theatre came together Friday for quite an afternoon at Neiman Marcus in the Galleria. The women were invited to the event put on by Houston Chronicle’s Shelby Hodge and Neiman Marcus. The gathering was designed to raise money for the Ensemble Theatre. Each of the 15 women dined on lunch and champagne while being treated to a fashion show by the department store. Attending the event were: Angela Williams, Kesa Guest, Shelby Hodge, Merle Yarbrough, Stacy Swift and a host of others!

FORMER INSITE STREET TEAM MEMBER MISTY STARKS AS BUSY AS EVER!

FROM NEW YORK TO HOUSTON FROM B-E-T TO JUDGE ALEX – THE SKY IS THE LIMIT!

You never know who you’re going to run into while walking the long halls of KRIV TV. This Friday was no exception when I bumped into former Insite Street Team Member and KRIV employee Misty Starks. Starks is now working for the nationally syndicated show Judge Alex. It’s based out of Houston and KRIV studios. Starks just returned to H-Town from New York. She lives here and there. While in the big apple Misty also worked for B-E-T and New York 1 News. She says she’s been bitten by the New York bug and she loves it. Starks plans to head back to the city that never sleeps in June. In the meantime, she’s enjoying her new job as producer for the Judge Alex show. Starks worked her way up the ladder from booker to full fledged producer. What’s next for Misty? I think the sky is the limit!

AN UNWANTED GUEST VISITS INSITE HEADQUARTERS!

HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO WALK OUTSIDE TO THIS!

I’ve already complained about the number of phone books left at my front door at Insite headquarters. This Tuesday someone left another one. I’m thinking about a restraining order. Anyway, I decided to pick up the phone book while I was putting out the trash Friday morning. When I picked up the book I was shocked to find a snake behind it. It was a small snake that would grow up to be a big snake. I think I heard a hisss and the snakes head raised like he wanted to do me something. Needless to say, instead of panicking I went and grabbed the Iniste camera and a photo. I just knew the snake wanted to take a picture with the Insite. He balked at that and tried to slither away. I won’t tell you what came next but the unwanted guest is now gone!

P.S. A co-worker told me it may be a copperhead…But it appears to actually be a Texas Brown snake:

Texas Brown Snakes are completely harmless if encountered, but will readily feign aggressiveness to defend themselves. This usually involves coiling up, raising the head, striking out repeatedly at anything that gets too close and vibrating the tail. This is just an act to get larger animals to leave them alone, however, since they generally strike with their mouths closed, and their mouths aren’t large enough to grab human skin even if they tried!

INSITE STREET TEAM MEMBER DON WILLIAMS WEIGH IN ON THE TSA!

WILLIAMS: AIRPORT SECURITY HAS GONE WAY TOO FAR – PICS FROM LAX!





In Feb 2008 (V-Day Weekend) I visited L.A. with my girlfriend and had a wonderful trip right up until it was time for us to go to LAX and return to Houston. We made it to LAX, checked in our luggage, and proceeded to the security checkpoint. I was going through the checkpoint and my lady had actually gone through the metal detectors. Suddenly, every other passenger attempting to fly, including myself – were forced outside on the pavement for what was apparently a “test terrorist threat drill.” We sat there for 3 hours watching them go through all of these procedures. That caused us to miss our afternoon flight. So while we were supposed to arrive in Houston at 7pm we didn’t make it until 12am. So, Isiah, in response to your question…yes, the TSA has gone too far. They should do test drills on their own time.

(Note: Don’s response is a reaction to a previous post about TSA screeners who go too far.)

THE MOBILE COMMAND POST MAKES A MOVE!

DO YOU NEED THE COMMAND CENTER IN YOUR COMMUNITY?

Beginning at 3 p.m. TODAY (Friday, March 28), Houston police officers from the department’s Central Division will re-deploy the HPD Mobile Community Outreach Police Station (MCOPS) vehicle to 3703 Irvington (in the parking lot of Menos). The command post will remain at the location until 9 p.m. and will be staffed with officers available for one-on-one citizen meetings and media interviews.

The MCOPS vehicle, acquired by HPD through the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the federal grant-funded Weed and Seed program, initially deployed at Moody Park, 3725 Fulton on Tuesday (Feb. 26) during the kickoff for the “Keep Houston Safe” public safety campaign in the Northside Village neighborhood.

The goal of this overtime initiative is to provide services to the community while providing high visibility; and, at the same time positively impacting the calls for service workload in the area and increasing communication between the police and community.

All area residents are encouraged to stop by and visit the MCOPS vehicle and speak to their officers about their community. We will also be signing up citizens who pledge their support to help Keep Houston Safe.

RAPPER TI: 1,000 COMMUNITY SERVICE HOURS AND POSSIBLY 1 YEAR IN PRISON!


HE SAYS HE’S GOING TO TURN THIS NEGATIVE INTO A POSITIVE – WILL IT WORK?

Rapper T.I. has admitted having unregistered machine guns and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Now he has a chance to avoid a lengthy prison sentence by telling kids not to make the same mistakes he did.

T.I., whose real name is Clifford Harris, must spend at least 1,000 hours talking to youth groups about the pitfalls of guns, gangs and drugs before reporting for about a year in prison under a deal worked out Thursday.

“I’m looking forward to turning this negative time in my life into a positive,” Harris, 27, told reporters after the hearing. “I know I have a long road of redemption to travel.”

Dressed in a gray business suit, Harris pleaded guilty Thursday to possession of unregistered machine guns and silencers, unlawful possession of machine guns and possession of firearms by a convicted felon.

He will be sentenced to serve about 12 months in prison after completing the community service, although his prison time could be increased or reduced depending on his fulfillment of the terms of the deal and good behavior, officials said.

Harris is one of rap music’s most successful artists. His sixth album, “T.I. vs. T.I.P.,” was released July 3, debuting at No. 1. He appeared in the 2007 film “American Gangster,” which starred Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe.

LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TO FOCUS ON FATAL CRASHES!

THE ATTEMPT TO KEEP THE ROAD SAFER!

At a 9 a.m. news conference TODAY (Friday, March 28), Houston Police Chief Harold Hurtt will be joined by leaders from 16 law enforcement agencies, the Harris and Montgomery County District Attorneys’ Offices and Mothers Against Drunk Driving in announcing an unprecedented campaign aimed at ridding our streets of drunk drivers.

The “Fatality Crash Reduction Campaign” news conference will be held at the Beth Yeshurun Cemetery at 1037 North Post Oak at Old Katy Road. The family of an innocent victim killed by a drunk driver will be at the news conference to speak on their loved one’s death.

Of the top 10 most populous counties in the United States, Harris County has the highest percentage of alcohol-related fatality crashes.

DVD copies of footage of HPD officers handling DWI suspects, Public Service Announcements and campaign-related photos will be distributed to the media.

The media is asked to enter the cemetery at the main entrance where they will be directed to park.

HOUSTON OFFICIALS TO ADDRESS UNDERAGE DRINKING!

IT BEGINS WITH A TOWN HALL MEETING!

Excessive underage drinking has reached epidemic proportions among Houston and Harris County youth. Already listed among the top regions in the nation for alcohol traffic incidents, the Houston-Harris County area recorded 1,172 alcohol related motor vehicular fatalities for the period between 2002-2006, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. As a result, some local agencies have joined forces with the Mayor White’s anti-drug office to develop proactive solutions in addressing this problem.

“As a community we need to do more, and I’m convinced that we can do more to protect our children, our families and friends from the devastation caused by drinking and driving. I’m glad to see so many agencies and organizations working together to solve this problem. I look forward to receiving the favorable results of their combined efforts,” said Mayor White.

Through a special grant funded by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services, Phoenix House, Mothers Against Drunk Driving-Southeast affiliate, Houston Crackdown and others have formed the Houston-Harris County Underage Drinking Initiative to work with area law enforcement agencies, judges, churches, parents, and schools aimed at the prevention of underage drinking and binge drinking on college campuses.

One of their first projects will be a town hall forum on prevention underage drinking and alcohol related fatalities to be taped by Houston Television (HTV) on March 31st, 4:00 pm, at its studios located at 3100 Main St. The forum, entitled Saving our Children from the Epidemic of Underage Drinking in Harris County, will combine lively discussion from expert panelists in law enforcement, education, treatment, and strategists who monitor teenage driving habits. With the help of HTV airing the discussion, large numbers of people will be able to take advantage of helpful news and information including agency hotlines and websites dedicated to the prevention of underage drinking in Houston and Harris County.

For more information please call 713-437-6164

CHUCK ROSENTHAL’S FORMER ASSISTANT CALLS IT QUITS!

KERRY STEVENS DECIDES TO RETIRED FROM THE OFFICE!

Chuck Rosenthal’s former secretary has resigned rather than report to the new job to which she was assigned by his replacement.

Kerry Stevens, who became widely known as the object of Rosenthal’s desire following the release of hundreds of his private e-mails, told the district attorney’s office that she was retiring effective Monday. She has been on authorized leave since she was informed she would be reassigned to the grand jury division.

Rosenthal was forced to resign as district attorney last month in the wake of the accidental release of a large batch of e-mails found on his county computer. Those e-mails included dirty and racist jokes, sexually explicit images, racist images and numerous affectionate messages directed at Stevens.

Kenneth Magidson, recently appointed to fill the remainder of Rosenthal’s term, expressed appreciation to Stevens for her years of public service and wished her well in future endeavors.

Stevens could not be reached for comment.

Stevens, 56, became a character in the drama surrounding Rosenthal’s downfall not only through their close relationship but because of questions of possible preferential treatment. At $89,500, her salary was higher than that of executive assistants for most local public officials, including the mayor and county judge, and she also received the use of a county car and free gas. Rosenthal approved an $11,500 raise for her just weeks before he stepped down.

Stevens started as a secretary in the district attorney’s office in 1979. She rose through the ranks and became Rosenthal’s executive secretary shortly after he took office in 2000.

DID THE TSA SCREENERS GO TOO FAR WITH THE PASSENGER?

HERE ARE SOME PLIERS NOW JUST PULL IT OUT!

A Texas woman who claims she was forced to remove a nipple ring with pliers in order to board an airplane called Thursday for an apology by federal security agents and a civil rights investigation.

“I wouldn’t wish this experience upon anyone,” Mandi Hamlin, 37, said at a news conference. “My experience with TSA was a nightmare I had to endure. No one deserves to be treated this way.”

Hamlin said she was trying to board a flight from Lubbock to Dallas on Feb. 24 when she was scanned by a Transportation Security Administration agent after passing through a larger metal detector without problems.

The female TSA agent used a handheld detector that beeped when it passed in front of Hamlin’s chest, the Dallas-area resident said.

Hamlin said she told the woman that she was wearing nipple piercings. The women then called over her male colleagues, one of whom said she would have to remove the body piercings, Hamlin claimed.

Hamlin said she could not remove them and asked if she could instead display her pierced breasts in private to the female agent. But several other male officers told her she could not board her flight until the jewelry was removed, she said.

She was taken behind a curtain and managed to remove one bar-shaped nipple piercing but had trouble with the second, a ring.

“Still crying, she informed the TSA officer that she could not remove it without the help of pliers, and the officer gave a pair to her,” said Hamlin’s attorney, Gloria Allred, reading from a letter she sent Thursday to the director of the TSA’s Office of Civil Rights and Liberties.

Hamlin said she heard male TSA agents snickering as she took out the ring. She was scanned again and was allowed to board even though she still was wearing a belly button ring.

“After nipple rings are inserted, the skin can often heal around the piercing, and the rings can be extremely difficult and painful to remove,” Allred said in the letter.

Hamlin filed a complaint but the TSA’s customer service manager at the Lubbock airport concluded the screening was handled properly, Allred said.

Hamlin wants an apology from the TSA and an investigation by the agency’s civil rights office.

WHY ARE THE TOE NAILS OF FORMER ROCKETS’ PLAYER CUTTINO MOBLEY PAINTED?

WHAT’S UP WITH THE TOES CUTTINO?

This is one of those pictures making its way around the internet. It’s of former Houston Rockets basketball player Cuttino Mobley. His toe nails are painted black for some reason. According to the earlier caption he was seen leaving a Beverly Hills hospital with the toe do. What do you think is going on here?