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Member since: Sun Aug 17, 2014, 05:29 PM
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Data Broker Is Selling Location Data of People Who Visit Abortion Clinics

A location data firm is selling information related to visits to clinics that provide abortions including Planned Parenthood facilities, showing where groups of people visiting the locations came from, how long they stayed there, and where they then went afterwards, according to sets of the data purchased by Motherboard.

The country may also see an increase in vigilante activity or forms of surveillance and harassment against those seeking or providing abortions. With this aggregated location data available to anyone on the open market, customers could include anti-abortion vigilantes as well. Anti-abortion groups are already fairly adept at using novel technology for their goals. In 2016, an advertising CEO who worked with anti-abortion and Christian groups sent targeted advertisements to women sitting in Planned Parenthood clinics in an attempt to change their decision around getting an abortion. The sale of the location data raises questions around why companies are selling data based on abortion clinics specifically, and whether they should introduce more safeguards around the purchase of that information, if be selling it at all.

“It's bonkers dangerous to have abortion clinics and then let someone buy the census tracks where people are coming from to visit that abortion clinic,” Zach Edwards, a cybersecurity researcher who closely tracks the data selling marketplace, told Motherboard in an online chat after reviewing the data. “This is how you dox someone traveling across state lines for abortions—how you dox clinics providing this service."

The company selling the data is SafeGraph. SafeGraph ultimately obtains location data from ordinary apps installed on peoples’ phones. Often app developers install code, called software development kits (SDKs), into their apps that sends users’ location data to companies in exchange for the developer receiving payment. Sometimes app users don’t know that their phone—be that via a prayer app, or a weather app—is collecting and sending location data to third parties, let alone some of the more dangerous use cases that Motherboard has reported on, including transferring data to U.S. military contractors. Planned Parenthood is not the organization performing the data collection nor benefiting from it financially.

Alec Baldwin's Lawyer Says 'Rust' OSHA Report "Exonerates Mr. Baldwin"

An attorney for Alec Baldwin said today that Wednesday’s report by the New Mexico safety regulators “exonerates” his client. The report cites “serious management failures” by the Rust production company in its investigation of the on-set shooting that killed DP Halyna Hutchins and badly injured director Joel Souza last year.

“We are grateful to the New Mexico Occupational Health and Safety Bureau for investigating this matter,” Luke Nikas wrote in a post on Baldwin’s Instagram page (see it below). “We appreciate that the report exonerates Mr. Baldwin by making clear that he believed the gun held only dummy rounds and that his authority on the production was limited to approving script changes and creative casting. Mr. Baldwin had no authority over the matters that were the subject of the Bureau’s findings of violations, and we are pleased that the New Mexico authorities have clarified these critical issues. We are confident that the individuals identified in the report will be held accountable for this tragedy.”

The report concludes that Rust Movie Productions LLC’s management “knew that firearm safety procedures were not being followed on set and demonstrated plain indifference to employee safety by failing to review work practices and take corrective action.”

Environmental Cabinet Secretary James Kenney said Wednesday that “there were serious management failures and more than sufficient evidence to suggest that if stardard industry practices were followed, the fatal shooting of Halyna Hutching and the serious injury to Joel Souza would not have occurred. … This is a complete failure of the employer to follow recognized national protocols that keep employees safe.”


Angry traveler threatens Jet Blue employee over delayed flight


Store owner shot girl who was waiting to take photo with Easter bunny while firing at shoplifters

VICTORVILLE, Calif. (KABC) -- A man has been arrested for mistakenly shooting a 9-year-old girl as he chased two shoplifters out of his store in a Victorville mall Tuesday evening, authorities say.

Marqel Cockrell, a co-owner of Sole Addicts, fired multiple shots in the shoplifter's direction but missed and struck the girl instead, according to the Victorville Police Department. Cockrell fled the scene after the shooting and was later found by Nevada Highway Patrol.

The 20-year-old, of Adelanto, was booked at the Clark County Jail for attempted murder and is being held on $1,000,000 bail. He'll likely face extradition back to California.


Social media posts that appear to be from the girl's family say she was shot twice in the arm while in line to get her picture taken with the Easter bunny. She is expected to be OK.


A call, a text, an apology: How an abortion arrest shook up a Texas town

Calixtro Villarreal’s phone rang Saturday afternoon, about 48 hours after his client, Lizelle Herrera, was arrested and charged with murder — over what local authorities alleged was a “self-induced abortion.”

It was Gocha Ramirez, the district attorney in Starr County, Tex., a remote area on the border with Mexico. Herrera should never have been charged, Ramirez told the lawyer, according to a person familiar with the situation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe private interactions.

The district attorney reiterated that sentiment in a text he sent the next day to an acquaintance. “I’m so sorry,” he wrote in the message, which was reviewed by The Washington Post. “I assure you I never meant to hurt this young lady.”

However, interviews with several people in the South Texas community closely following the situation, as well as statements from leaders in the Texas antiabortion movement, suggest this was not part of a broader antiabortion strategy, but instead a hasty error by a first-term Democratic district attorney. Herrera’s husband -- who filed for divorce on the same day as her arrest -- is being represented by a prosecutor in the district attorney’s office, raising questions about potential conflicts of interest.


Her husband, Ismael Herrera, filed a divorce petition on April 7, the same day as her arrest, according to court documents. They married in 2015, when she was 19 years old, and stopped living together on or about Jan. 1, according to the records. The separation occurred less than a week before the “self-induced abortion” described in her indictment. The couple have two sons, according to the records.


Denver business owner to implement 'crime spike fee' to recover shoplifting losses

Derek Friedman owns several Sportsfan and Sock 'Em Sock Emporium stores in the Denver metro area. He told 9NEWS his stores along the 16th Street Mall and his Sportsfan location on Federal Boulevard have seen an increase in crime. 
 "When you look at the shoplifting and the overall theft increase it’s six figures [in losses], which is staggering for a company our size, to have that much just walk out the door," he said. "So that’s why we implement this small fee to attempt to recover some of it." 
"I think what’s particularly troublesome is the situations where you have people that walk in, grab several things, are asked if they’re ready to check out, and they just walk right out and they have no fear of repercussions," Friedman said. 

Friedman said applicants willing to work at those locations have dwindled, and he isn't surprised. While he knows he won't recover all of the money his business has lost, he hopes crime rates decrease for the sake of his employees. 

"I think the thing that is toughest is when you get a call from a young lady that works for you and she’s sobbing because someone has just threatened with a plumbing wrench and walked out with a few pair of socks," he said.


78-year-old thrown to ground, Tased by Westminster police while suffering medical condition, lawsuit

Clayton Shriver was on a shopping trip at Walmart when he started feeling ill and went to sit and wait for his partner inside the store’s fast-food chain restaurant, according to the lawsuit.
When Shriver entered McDonald’s, the lawsuit states that he mistakenly sat down at a seat that was designated as a non-seating area due to COVID-19.

The lawsuit states that Shriver suffers from many serious medical and emotional health conditions, including multiple closed head injuries and traumatic brain injuries, memory loss, organic mood disorder, hearing loss, and several other medical conditions.

At that time, a staff member told Shriver that he needed to purchase something or leave the store. Shriver was unable to hear what the staff was saying to him due to his medical condition, according to the lawsuit.

Shriver believed the staff could not understand him and he began to raise his voice, according to the lawsuit, and explained that he needed medical help.

The lawsuit states that Westminster police officer Michael Owen, who was already at Walmart for an unrelated reason, responded to McDonald’s due to a call by Walmart loss prevention.

The lawsuit says that when Owen arrived at McDonald’s, observed Shriver sitting in the “no sitting” area while speaking loudly. The lawsuit alleges that Owen was unable to hear what Shriver was saying.

Shriver then provided Owen with his name and said he was suffering from a medical condition, according to the lawsuit.
Shriver said he heard McDonald’s staff complaining to Owen about him, which is when he said he put his arms up and said, “Wait a minute, I’m in terrible pain.” The lawsuit states that Shriver then heard that he was being asked to leave, so he stood up and told Owen, “Okay, I’ll go to my car.”

Shriver then started to walk out of McDonald’s, according to the lawsuit, and that’s when Owen grabbed Shriver and threw him to the ground.

The lawsuit claims that Owen placed handcuffs on Shriver, who stiffened up in pain and tried to roll over. That’s when Owen allegedly grabbed his Taser and used it on Shriver.


'Outcome reached' in trial of Kim Potter, ex-officer charged in Daunte Wright's death

A Minneapolis jury reached an "outcome" on Thursday in the trial of Kim Potter, a former police officer charged with fatally shooting Daunte Wright, a Black motorist — accidentally, she's claimed, by grabbing her gun instead of a Taser.

Hennepin County Judge Regina Chu is expected to reveal the outcome — reached by a panel of two Asian Americans, one Black person and nine white people — between 1:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. CST.

I'm a betting woman so I'm going to go ahead and say hung jury. I doubt they will re try her.

Prosecutor in I-70 Truck Driver Case Brags Online About Brake Trophy

While close to 4.5 million people have signed on to a Change.org petition seeking clemency for truck driver Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, who was recently sentenced in Jefferson County to 110 years in prison, those who prosecuted the case are responding much differently.

"Get yourself a trial partner as great as Trevor Moritzky. He turned a brake shoe from a semi truck into a memento. What a special gift from truly a special person," Kayla Wildeman, a prosecutor with the District Attorney's Office for the First Judicial District who was involved in the case, wrote on Facebook above a photo that shows a brake next to a diploma. "I sure am grateful this trial brought you into my career as both a colleague and a friend! Words will never convey how lucky I am to have gotten the opportunity to learn from you!"

According to the Facebook post, Moritzky, a deputy district attorney in the First Judicial District, gifted colleague Wildeman, also a deputy district attorney, a brake similar to one taken out of the truck that Aguilera-Mederos crashed on I-70 near Colorado Mills Parkway in April 2019.

The crash resulted in four deaths: 24-year-old Denver resident Miguel Angel Lamas Arellano; Doyle Harrison, a 61-year-old from Hudson; 67-year-old Arvadan William Bailey; and Stanley Politano, a 69-year-old who was also from Arva

Prosecutors threw the book at Aguilera-Mederos, who was convicted on 27 out of 41 charges stemming from the crash. The 110-year sentence came as a result of mandatory sentencing rules, which state lawmakers are already talking about reforming, owing to what they see as an egregious over-sentencing of Aguilera-Mederos.

Much of the argument in court revolved around whether Aguilera-Mederos was at fault for a crash that occurred after the brakes on his truck failed.

The brake trophy display on Facebook includes Wildeman's name, the case number and "I-70 Case."

"It is not a piece of evidence from the case. The post was in very poor taste and does not reflect the values of my administration. We have addressed it internally," says Alexis King, district attorney for the First Judicial District. King's predecessor, Peter Weir, was in charge of the office when charges were originally filed against Aguilera-Medero.

Given his judgment in awarding the trophy to a colleague, some members of the legal community wonder if Moritzky was an appropriate candidate for the several vacant district court judge positions in the metro area for which he's been considered.

And the fact that a prosecutor gifted a brake pad to a colleague is evidence of deeper problems among law enforcement officials, according to Andy McNulty, a lawyer with Killmer, Lane & Newman. "It's a grotesque example of the inhumanity of our criminal injustice system. To receive a brake pad as some sort of trophy for sentencing a man to death in prison shows the complete disregard that prosecutors have for the lives they ruin, and how they view their job as some sort of game rather than an obligation to serve justice," McNulty says

The huge sentence given to Aguilera-Mederos, a Cuban immigrant, has drawn the attention of the League of United Latin American Citizens, a Washington, D.C.-based organization that calls itself the "largest and oldest Hispanic organization in the United States." On December 16, LULAC announced that it's "working on registering a formal complaint of gross misconduct with the Colorado Bar Association against First Judicial District Attorney Alexis King for abuse of power and official oppression under the color of law in filing charges against an innocent truck driver who was behind the wheel when his truck’s brakes failed."


No charges against Arvada police officer who shot and killed 'Good Samaritan' during attack in Olde

No charges will be filed against the Arvada Police officer who shot and killed a good Samaritan in June who police say stopped a mass shooting in the city’s Olde Town area.

Arvada Police officer Kraig Brownlow was working in a substation in Arvada’s shopping and restaurant district with two other officers when Ronald Troyke, dressed in all black and armed with an assault rifle and a shotgun, parked downtown and ambushed Arvada officer Gordon Beesley, who was out on patrol at the time.

At Troyke’s home, there was a letter he wrote about killing police officers.

After killing Beesley, Troyke continued to shoot out windows in Arvada Police vehicles.

In the early minutes after the assault, Brownlow and the other officers didn’t know that Beesley had been killed and were trying to figure out what to do from the substation, the letter said. They were concerned they weren’t wearing proper body armor and that the door to the substation wouldn’t stop AR rounds.

That’s when Johnny Hurley, 40, a concealed carry permit holder who was shopping nearby, shot and killed Troyke. He then went over to pick up Troyke’s assault rifle on the ground.

Brownlow, peering out of the substation, did not see that exchange. Instead, moments later, Hurley walked into view, holding his pistol and the rifle. Believing Hurley was part of the attack, Brownlow cracked open the door and fired three rounds, striking Hurley.

“We lost two people that day when a mass shooter brought violence to the heart of Olde Town Arvada,” said Jefferson County District Attorney Alexis King. “We lost Johnny Hurley, a young man who made an incredible choice to engage on behalf of strangers.”

In justifying Brownlow’s actions, King wrote in a decision letter that the facts must be viewed as they appeared to him at the time.

“Officer Brownlow reasonably believed that the man in black was firing the weapon repeatedly, having heard at least three series of gunshots in or near the popular Olde Town square. Officer Brownlow also knew that APD vehicles had been shot,” the letter said. “It is after those observations that John Hurley appeared in view, about 180 seconds later … Brownlow did not know, and could not have known from his vantage point, of the murder of Officer Beesley or of Hurley’s role in eliminating the threat posed by the man in black.”

Hurley’s mother, Kathleen Boleyn, who has hired Siddhartha Rathod and Qusair Mohamedbhai as attorneys, issued a statement through her lawyers on Monday.

“I imagine that many people are angry and that is understandable. I would ask that instead of acting out on your anger, that you use that energy to be the change you wish to see in the world,” Boleyn said. “Engage in meaningful conversations that might make a difference in how we all may move forward together.”

The city of Arvada released its own statement praising Hurley for protecting others without thinking of his own safety, while also reiterating support for Arvada’s police department.

“This incident illustrates the nearly unfathomable decisions society asks our police officers to make as they go about their everyday work,” the statement said.

Brownlow, who had been an officer for six years inArvada at the time, is still on leave from the department.

Arvada Police spokesman Det. Snelling said that was “his choice.”

“It was a horrible event,” he wrote, in an email.
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