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NEW ‘CHANGE’ AT THE HARRIS COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE!

LYKOS: YES WE CAN WEAR LONGER SKIRTS!

The Insite read another blog where I got a hint of what to possibly expect from Pat Lykos as the new Harris County District Attorney. It was written on another website that one of the things Lykos is concerned about is short skirts at the D-A’s office. I’m not sure if this should be a concern in an office where racism and sexism allegedly ran rampid just 12 short months ago. Here’s an excerpt and what 1st Assistant D-A Jim Leitner had to say to a group of young prosecutors:

“A lot of people have been asking me if Pat is going to let the women still wear pant suits. I had lunch with Pat yesterday and she was wearing pants. She said pantsuits will be fine. She is concerned with some of the short skirts she’s seen.”

A SUPPORTED INSITE IS A MORE CONTENT FILLED INSITE!

In case some of you have forgotten, you have the ability to shop right here on the Insite for your Christmas gifts without leaving your home. You can click the Amazon banner above and go shopping. A lot of the products are shipped absolutely free. So make sure you support the Insite by clicking the Amazon banner button at the top of the site (the only place this site gets credit) and shop until your heart’s content!

WAY TOO TIRED FOR THE ANTHONY HAMILTON CONCERT!

AN EMPTY STAGE AND A QUIET TOUR BUS IS ALL I SAW!


A few friends in town for the Atlanta Hawks game wanted to go and see the Anthony Hamilton concert Sunday night at the House of Blues in downtown Houston. The Insite was able to make a call and get three VIP passes. But by the time I made it inside the venue I was worn out from a busy Sunday. So I made sure my guest got in okay and quietly ducked out. The only thing I saw of R&B singer Anthony Hamilton was his tour bus and a closed stage curtain. Sometimes when you’re tired, you’re just tired. But my friends enjoyed it so everything worked out fine!

BLACKWATER PROBE LEADS TO MANSLAUGHTER CHARGES FOR SECURITY GUARDS!

THE FIRST FEDERAL PROSECUTION OF ITS KIND!

A 35-count indictment was unsealed today in the District of Columbia charging five Blackwater security guards with voluntary manslaughter, attempt to commit manslaughter, and weapons violations for their alleged roles in the Sept.16, 2007, shooting at Nisur Square in Baghdad, Iraq. The defendants are charged with killing 14 unarmed civilians and wounding 20 other individuals.

In addition, a sixth Blackwater security guard pleaded guilty on Dec. 5, 2008, to charges of voluntary manslaughter and attempt to commit manslaughter for his role in the Sept. 16, 2007, shooting at Nisur Square. This guilty plea was also unsealed today.

The indictment against the five defendants and the guilty plea by a sixth defendant were announced today by Patrick Rowan, Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Jeffrey A. Taylor, United States Attorney for the District of Columbia; and Joseph Persichini, Jr., Assistant Director in Charge, FBI Washington Field Office.

The indictment, which was returned under seal on Dec. 4, 2008, charges Paul A. Slough, age 29, of Keller, Texas; Nicholas A. Slatten, age 24, of Sparta, Tennessee; Evan S. Liberty, age 26, of Rochester, New Hampshire; Dustin L. Heard, age 27, of Maryville, Tennessee; and Donald W. Ball, age 26, of West Valley City, Utah. Each of the defendants is charged with 14 counts of voluntary manslaughter, 20 counts of attempt to commit manslaughter, and one count of using and discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.

The defendants, who surrendered to federal authorities this morning in Utah, are scheduled to appear today in federal court in Salt Lake City at 1:30 pm (Mountain Time). If convicted of the charges against them, the defendants face a potential maximum sentence of ten years imprisonment for each count of manslaughter, seven years of imprisonment for each count of attempt to commit manslaughter, and a mandatory minimum imprisonment of 30 years for the firearms count.

The indictment represents the first prosecution under the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (MEJA) to be filed against non-Defense Department private contractors, which was not possible prior to the 2004 amendments to MEJA that specifically expanded the reach of MEJA to non-Defense Department contractors who provide services “in support of the mission of the Department of Defense overseas.”

“The government alleges in the documents unsealed today that at least 34 unarmed Iraqi civilians, including women and children, were killed or injured without justification or provocation by these Blackwater security guards in the shooting at Nisur Square. Today’s indictment and guilty plea demonstrate that those who engage in unprovoked and illegal attacks on civilians, whether during times of conflict or times of peace, will be held accountable,” said Patrick Rowan, Assistant Attorney General for National Security.

“We honor the brave service of the many U.S. contractors who are employed to support the mission of our Armed Forces in extremely difficult circumstances. Today, we honor that service by holding accountable the very few individuals who abused that employment by committing some very serious crimes against dozens of innocent civilians,” stated Jeff Taylor, U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia.

“Today’s indictments illustrate the FBI’s expanded responsibilities and its dedication to respond to any crime scene; be it in the United States or on foreign soil. The FBI will continue to work with its law enforcement partners in this country and abroad to ensure that the nation’s federal laws are enforced,” said Joseph Persichini, Jr., Assistant Director in Charge, FBI Washington Field Office.

According to the indictment, the defendants were all employed by the Armed Forces outside the United States — that is, the defendants were employed as independent contractors and employees of Blackwater Worldwide, a contractor of the Department of State, to provide personal security services related to supporting the mission of the Department of Defense in the Republic of Iraq, within the meaning of MEJA.

All events alleged in the indictment took place outside of the jurisdiction of any particular State or district and within the venue of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, as provided by 18 U.S.C. § 3238.

Counts 1-14 of the indictment charge the defendants with committing voluntary manslaughter by killing the following individuals: 1) Amed Haithem Ahmed Al Rubia’y, 2) Mahassin Mohssen Kadhum Al-Khazali, 3) Osama Fadhil Abbas, 4) Ali Mohammed Hafedh Abdul Razzaq, 5) Mohamed Abbas Mahmoud, 6) Qasim Mohamed Abbas Mahmoud, 7) Sa’adi Ali Abbas Alkarkh, 8) Mushtaq Karim Abd Al-Razzaq, 9) Ghaniyah Hassan Ali, 10) Ibrahim Abid Ayash, 11) Hamoud Sa’eed Abttan, 12) Uday Ismail Ibrahiem, 13) Mahdi Sahib Nasir, and 14) Ali Khalil Abdul Hussein.

Counts 15 through 34 of the indictment charge the defendants with attempting to commit manslaughter by attempting to kill the following 20 additional individuals who were wounded as a result of the shooting: 15) Majed Salman Abdel Kareem Al-Gharbawi; 16) Jennan Hafidh Abid al-Razzaq; 17) Yasmin Abdul Kidr Salhe; 18) Mohanad Wadhnah; 19) Haydar Ahmad Rabie Hussain Al-Khafaji; 20) Hassan Jaber Salman; 21) Farid Walid Hasoun Al-Kasab; 22) Abdul Amir Raheem Jihan Yasser; 23) Wisam Raheem Fliah Hasan Al-Miri; 24) Talib Mutluk Diwan; 25) Adel Jaber Sham’ma Al-Jadiri; 26) Nasir Hamzah Latif Al-Rikabi; 27) Mahdi Abid Khider Abbas Al-Faraji; 28) Abdul Wahab Abdul Qadar Al-Qalamchi; 29) Bara Sadoon Ismail Al-Ani; 30) Sami Hawa Hamud Al-Sabahin; 31) Fawziyyah Aliwi Hassoon; 32) Ali Hadi Naji Al-Rubaie; 33) Alah Majeed Sghair Zaidi; and 34) Jassim Mohammad Hashim.

Count 35 of the indictment charges the defendants with knowingly using and discharging firearms, that is, an SR-25 sniper rifle; machine guns (M-4 assault rifles and M-240 machine guns); and destructive devices (M-203 grenade launchers and grenades), during and in relation to a crime of violence for which each of them may be prosecuted in a court of the United States.

Also announced today was the unsealing of a guilty plea by Jeremy P. Ridgeway, age 35, of California. On Dec. 5, 2008, Ridgeway pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia before U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina to a superseding criminal information charging him with voluntary manslaughter and attempt to commit manslaughter for his role in the September 16, 2007, shooting at Nisur Square. A sentencing date has not been set by the court.

This investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The Iraqi Ministry of Interior and the Iraqi National Police also provided cooperation and assistance in the investigation.

The prosecution is being handled Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kenneth C. Kohl and Jonathan M. Malis from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, as well as Barry Jonas, Trial Attorney from the Justice Department’s National Security Division.

The public is reminded that an indictment is merely a formal charging document notifying a defendant of the charges against him or her. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

QUENTIN MEASE TO BE HONORED AT CITY HALL!

CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF LIFE!

On December 9, 2008, Council Member Ronald C. Green will host a reception and present a proclamation to Mr. Quentin Mease in honor of his 100th birthday. The Reception will begin at 12:30 p.m. at City Hall Annex, 1st Floor followed by the City Hall presentation at 1:30 p.m. Mr. Mease graduated from West High School in 1924 and Des Moines University in 1928.During the same period Mr. Mease went from Crocker Branch YMCA volunteer to nineteen-year-old executive director in 1927. In 1942 Mr. Mease was inducted into the United States Army Air Corps. where he rose from the rank of enlisted man to Captain while serving in the Pacific Theatre of World War II. After earning a Masters degree in social work administration in 1948 from George Williams College in Chicago, Illinois, Mr. Mease accepted the position of executive director of the Bagby Street YMCA in Houston, Texas. Mr. Mease has served on over thirty non-profit boards in Des Moines, Chicago and Houston and raised an estimated $270 million dollars. Mr. Mease was founder and chairman for nineteen years of the Harris County Hospital District and chaired the Harris County Hospital Foundation.

Mr. Quentin is Emeritus Member of the Baylor College of Medicine and the Texas Medical Center. The naming of Houston’s Quentin R. Mease Community is one of many honors garnered by Mease’s community work.

The City of Houston salutes Quentin Mease on this auspicious occasion, and extends best wishes for continued success.

A GIFT TO THE HOUSTON INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT!

SOME POSITIVE NEWS OUT OF THE DISTRICT!

The HISD Athletic Department will receive free shoulder pads, footballs and other equipment from the Houston Texans, the NFL, and Douglas Pads & Sports.

Douglas Pads & Sports will donate 200 shoulder pads, the NFL will donate 200 footballs, and the Houston Texans will donate 200 planners.

HISD football players and coaches will join representatives from the Houston Texans, Douglas Pads & Sports, and NFL to receive the equipment. “The Texans are happy to team with Douglas Pads & Sports and the National Football League to provide equipment for the next generation of NFL stars,” Texans president Jamey Rootes said. “This is a continuing effort by the Texans to enhance the youth football in our community.”

“The Houston Texans have been valued partners of the HISD Athletic Department from day one,” said HISD Athletic Director Daryl Wade. “They have provided coaches clinics, clinics for our athletes, as well as many other programs that have assisted our schools and communities. This donation of equipment is just another example of their commitment to our young people and coaches. We look forward to our continued partnership.”

THE OFFICER MAY HAVE LIVED IF THE SUSPECT WASN’T ON PAROLE!

TIMOTHY ABERNETHY: HPD OFFICER KILLED!

A crime victims rights advocate tells FOX 26 News that the fatal shooting of a Houston police officer could have been avoided had the suspect not been on parole.

Mabry Joseph Landor III, 28, has been charged with capital murder of a police officer in the shooting death of Officer Timothy Abernethy following a Sunday morning traffic stop.

Landor is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday. At the time of the shooting, Landor was on discretionary mandatory release, which means the parole board had the option to deny his release. When he was last arrested, Landor was on parole for a driving while intoxicated case, according to crime victims rights advocate Andy Kahan.

Police say that Landor shot Abernethy on Sunday at approximately 8:40 a.m. shortly after Abernathy stopped the suspect’s Dodge Durango at the Luxor Apartment Complex at the 5800 block of Sunforest Drive.

Landor jumped out of the SUV and ran into the complex with the officer following close behind, according to police. Witnesses told police that Landor then turned around and shot the officer several times.

Dozens of officers joined Abernethy’s family on Sunday at Memorial Hermann Hospital where the 11-year-veteran of the Houston Police Department, was pronounced dead.

He was rushed to the hospital by ambulance in critical condition.

Police have not confirmed if the officer was able to return fire.

Less than an hour after the shooting, Harris County Sheriff’s Deputies apprehended a person of interest near West Green’s Road and Veterans Memorial, but at the time, avoided calling him a suspect.

HPD says they have stepped up patrols in the area where the shooting occurred due to a high concentration of drug and gang activity.

Houston Police Chief Harold Hurtt said Abernethy’s wife and adult daughter were notified. Police attempted to reach the fallen officer’s son, who serves in the military and is stationed in Italy.

Mayor Bill White also released a statement to the media, asking the community to support the officer’s family and fellow officers.

“I encourage all Houstonians to keep the officer’s family in their prayers. We are lucky to have people who risk their lives for our safety,” said Houston Mayor Bill White.

WHEN WILL IT STOP: THREE MORE TEACHERS ARRESTED MONDAY!


School district police have arrested two teachers and one custodian at a high school in southeast Houston. All three face various charges related to drug possession.

FOX 26 News has learned that the arrests took place after the principal of Jack Yates High School asked the Houston Independent School District Police Department to search the school parking lot for drugs.

Two men were arrested for marijuana possession while another man was arrested for possession of a controlled substance, specifically, a prescription drug without a valid prescription.

The three arrests bring the amount of total drug-related arrests of HISD employees to twelve for 2008 with a total of 14 charges filed against them.

WHAT’S ON YOUR CHRISTMAS WISH LIST?

WHAT ARE YOU OBSESSING OVER THIS HOLIDAY SEASON?

The question the Insite has is what’s on your Christmas wish list and I don’t want to hear peace on earth. I’m looking for your materialistic wants and needs. If you had the ability to splurge on one thing what would it be this year. The thing that sticks out in my mind is the 73 inch HD television I saw at Fry’s on Saturday. Surprisingly, it’s very affordable. I think I’m going to make my wish come true this year. The current television downstairs is a 60 inch but not HD. So I think I owe myself an upgrade. Now, the ball is back in your court. What is on your Christmas wish list this year?

WAS SHE DRUNK OR HIGH ON THE AIR?

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS SHOPPING CHANNEL HOST BEFORE?

I was channel surfacing Saturday night when I landed on Jewelry TV. It’s a shopping channel that caught my attention. The host of the show actually caught my attention. She was just incredible and I don’t mean that in a good way. The woman was stumbling all over herself, there was a lot of dead air and she just seemed confused. I was with a group of people who were just floored by her on air presence. She was sluring and very forgetful. I wasn’t quite sure if she was drunk, high, or just a bad host. You would have to see it to believe it. I can’t believe Jewelry TV execs didn’t have some tough questions for her once she got off the air. I never did get her name because of her antics. I hope she gets it together before she goes back on the air!

MICHAEL JACKSON STILL PULLING CROWDS IN HOUSTON!

PEOPLE STOPPED SHOPPING TO WATCH THE MUSIC VIDEOS AS IF THEY WERE JUST RELEASED!

It’s that time of the year when lots of busy people are out and about looking to buy Christmas gifts. One of the places I stopped on Saturday was Fry’s Electronics in Houston. As I entered the store I heard a familiar song blasting through the building. It was Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal. His greatest hits videos were being played on a big screen television in the middle of store. But what I noticed were all the people who stopped shopping and just watched the videos. At times more than a dozen people were gathered around watching Michael do the Moonwalk or several other signature moves. Some were bobbing their heads and others smiling with excitement as if they were seeing these videos for the first time. It was strange to see so many people embracing the entertainer’s music as if it were new and as if the recent criminal trial didn’t happen. I guess great art and great music will endure despite the adversity of the artist. And did I mention just how diverse the crowd of onlookers were. Black, White, Hispanic, young, old, male and female. Way to go Mike in 2008!

ARE VINYL ALBUMS MAKING A COMEBACK?

GET YOUR BACK UP NEEDLES TOGETHER THE RECORD PLAYER IS BACK OR IS IT?

I was in Best Buy last week when I noticed several shelves full of vinyl albums. It’s a sight I haven’t seen in a decade. In an age of digital downloads, cd’s and computers you’d never expect to find actual records at a music store. But in the Best Buy on Richmond there they were. The store had Vinyl albums by Dr. Dre, Madonna and many others. I’m not sure if anyone out there still has one of those phonographs or record players but apparently there is a market. When was the last time you purchased a vinyl album?