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Maryland Cop Charged With Raping Woman During Traffic Stop



An officer has been charged after he allegedly raped a woman he pulled over last Thursday, police say. 

Prince George’s Police chief Hank Stawinski released surveillance video from a business in the area that shows a cruiser activating its emergency lights around 1 a.m. that morning in Langley Park, Maryland. Stawinski said he believes the video captures the beginning of the incident in which Prince George’s County officer Ryan Macklin allegedly pulled over a woman, and forced her to perform a sex act while they were both in her car in a nearby parking lot.

Macklin was arrested Monday and has been charged with five counts including rape, assault and sex offense. Macklin has been suspended without pay, Stawinski said at a Monday press conference. 

Macklin was in uniform, on duty and in a marked cruiser at the time, Prince George’s Count Police Department spokeswoman Jennifer Donelan told CBS affiliate WUSA9 reports.

Stawinski said the woman came to a police station with the encouragement of friends several hours after the incident. He said his department is investigating not as an act of police misconduct, but as a crime committed by a police officer.

Stawinski said there had been previous concerns that the woman was targeted for her immigration status or for her personal history, but said he doesn’t believe that to be the case. He said he believes there would have been no way for the officer to know any information about the woman when he pulled her over, and that she was likely targeted because she was driving alone at night.

Stawinski said information was previously leaked to the media in a “deliberate attempt to undermine” the investigation. He didn’t specify what the information was.

“If I find out who leaked this information, they will be dealt with in the harshest possible manner,” Stawinski said.

Stawinski praised the woman for coming forward. He said information developed over the last 72 hours leads investigators to believe there could be other incidents, and he encouraged anyone with information to call a designated tipline at 301-772-4795.



A ‘Central Park Five’ Survivor’s Tear-Filled Plea: ‘Trump Put a Bounty On Our Heads’



LOS ANGELES, California—The five men who were arrested as teenagers, falsely convicted, sentenced to years in prison, and eventually exonerated for the rape and assault of a white jogger in Central Park in 1989, have never been keen on the name “Central Park Five.” They avoid the phrase when possible. It was not a moniker they chose, but one given to them by the press: by outlets that regularly printed their legal names, though all five were underage; by tabloids that often failed to write “allegedly” when describing their charges; by papers that ran full-page ads from a playboy real estate developer with latent political ambitions, attacking them in huge black font: “BRING BACK THE DEATH PENALTY.”

Friday afternoon, at the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California’s 25th Annual Luncheon, where the five men were being honored, much care was taken to orient the celebration away from that phrase, and toward the five people it had obscured: Korey Wise, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Kevin Richardson, and Raymond Santana.

As actor Michael B. Jordan introduced the five honorees, he retold the famous story for the crowd. “It was East Coast news, but a familiar story to anyone growing up black in America,” Jordan said. “We didn’t know their names, but we knew their ages: 15, 14, 16—the same ages we were. They could be us.”

“In 1989, police found the body of a young white woman in Central Park, covered in blood, and left for dead after a sexual assault. Weeks later, Trisha Meili awakened from a coma. She was unable to recall her attack. But the police had already been rounding up suspects, questioning black and brown teenagers who had been in Central Park that night. They focused their interrogation tactics on five boys in particular. Four of those teenagers did not know each other when they were arrested. I repeat, four of those boys did not know each other when they were arrested.”

The men had come to receive the inaugural Roger Baldwin Courage Award, and to accept another on behalf of director Ava DuVernay, whose recent Netflix series When They See Us retold their decades-long legal battle. DuVernay had won the ACLU’s annual Social Responsibility in Media Award—an irony lost on no one, least of all Yusef Salaam. When Salaam took the stage to accept her award, he introduced himself with a new name: “I am one of the Exonerated Five.”

“After decades of being known as the Central Park Five, we thank Ava for acknowledging our humanity and telling our story with honesty and factual representation,” Salaam said, during his speech accepting her award. “We had to struggle to break the label that the media gave us. We stumbled forward, falling on our face at times.”

During his speech, Salaam recalled when the media had been less humane: when columnists called them a “wolf pack,” and when Pat Buchanan insisted that if only “the eldest of that wolf pack were tried, convicted and hanged in Central Park, by June 1, and the 13- and 14-year-olds were stripped, horsewhipped, and sent to prison, the park might soon be safe again for women.”

Salaam lingered on the full-page ad taken out by the man currently occupying the White House.

“Korey [Wise] said it so well,” Salaam said. “He said, when Donald Trump took out that full-page ad, and put them in all of New York City’s newspapers, calling for our execution, he placed a bounty on our head.”

“They had published our names, our phone numbers, and our addresses in New York City’s newspapers. Imagine the horror of that. Just step backwards once, to the 1950s—we would become modern-day Emmett Tills. It was almost as if they were trying to find someone from the darkest enclaves of society to come into our homes, drag us from our beds, and hang us from trees in Central Park.”

As he spoke, Salaam took long pauses. At one point, an aide emerged with a fistful of tissues. “I’m not ashamed to cry in front of you,” he said. “These are tears of pain. These are tears of joy. We are the heroes of this story.”

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Poor taste: Seattle brewery issues grovelling apology after advertising Bloods and Crips-themed beers with red and blue bandanna designs



A Washington brewery has been slammed and forced into issuing a groveling apology after it advertised a new line of ‘Bloods and Crips’ themed beers.

Mirage Beer, a Seattle-based company, announced the release of two new IPAs called ‘Snitch Blood’ and ‘Where You From’ in cans decorated to look like the red and blue bandannas worn by the rival Los Angeles gangs.

But the offensive branding was seized upon by the craft beer community which called Mirage Beer out for being ‘entitled’ and in very poor taste, forcing the company into an embarrassing U-turn.

F*** all the politeness, people have died over that s*** you’re trying to use to be down & kool [sic],’ Beer Kulture, an Instagram account dedicated to craft beer said, following the announcement of the two beers.

The account continued: ‘Mirage Beer… those new beers y’all are releasing is a dub. Y’all are entitled, non creative Kulture vultures that deserves to fail, hard & fast.’

In response, Mirage Beer quickly deleted the post and scrapped the release, issuing an apology and promising to donate to a charity that works in communities affected by gang violence.

Mirage Beer said in the brief Instagram post: ‘Fully agree those labels were a dumb idea. Still going to release the beers, but obv with new names. All proceeds going to the Southern Poverty Law Center [sic].’ 

Despite the apology, dozens took to social media to criticize the company, suggesting it trivialized gang violence.

One said: ‘This is so f*****d. Knowing all the children that died because of all that, I fail to see the quirkiness.’

Another said he lost his son to gang violence and said the branding was a bad idea. 

Then in a longer apology, owner of Mirage Beer Company, Michael Dempster released a statement accepting the labels were insensitive and created in poor taste.

He wrote: ‘I deeply regret the obvious element of appropriation, and further, that they trivialized the impact of gang violence on marginalized communities. 





























Despite the apology, dozens took to social media to criticize the company, suggesting it trivialized gang violence. One said: ‘This is so f*****d. Knowing all the children that died because of all that, I fail to see the quirkiness’

‘I’m embarrassed and ashamed to find myself here. I was blind, and stupid, and I wish I could take it back — not for my benefit, but to prevent anyone from feeling like this industry is any more hostile and/or insensitive than it already is. 

‘This was not my intent, and that’s part of the problem: I hadn’t thought this through.’

Adding: ‘It breaks my heart that I’m the reason for anyone feeling less welcome in the craft beer community, and I’m sorry anyone had to waste any energy at all on me or my ignorant label ideas.’ 


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Woman Attacked by 6 Pit Bulls While Walking Dog in Taunton



A woman is recovering after police say she was attacked by six pit bulls while walking her daughter’s dog Wednesday night in Taunton, Massachusetts.

An officer on routine patrol was in the area of 187 Broadway at 8:45 p.m. when he saw a woman running in the middle of the road. The officer then witnessed six pit bulls following and attacking 51-year-old Rochelle Silva.

“At least three of them started charging at me down the driveway,” Silva said.

She ended up in her neighbor’s yard, with her body over her daughter’s dog, Ace, trying to protect him.

The officer who noticed Silva pulled over his cruiser and ran to assist her. When he approached, some of the dogs turned toward him as if they were going to attack the officer.

Police said because the dogs were on top of the woman, the officer was unable to discharge his firearm safely at any of the dogs, so instead, he went back to his cruiser and activated the sirens and air horn to try to distract the animals.

The distraction allowed the woman enough time to get to her feet and allow the officer and a good Samaritan to get the woman into the officer’s cruiser.

“I thought I was going to die,” Silva said. “The chunks that were coming out of my body, I could feel them.”

“She was in a ball, and a guy pulled over, and he was wearing a neon shirt and was helping her,” neighbor Stefanie Murphy recalled.

At that time, the owner of the dogs came out of his house to try and get the dogs under control.

Police said that’s when some of the dogs tried to jump through the open front driver’s side window of the cruiser to attack the officer. The officer was able to roll up the window to avoid being bitten, but the good Samaritan was bitten in the process.

The attack also killed Ace.

The dog’s owner was eventually able to get all the dogs back inside his house.

“He had six of them, and here, you’re not supposed to have more than three of them without a kennel license, and I doubt he had that, either,” said the victim’s daughter, Arianna Silva.

The woman who was attacked was taken to Rhode Island Hospital and suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

The good Samaritan took himself to an area hospital for treatment of a leg injury.

The family says Silva can’t walk, and she’ll now be unable to work as she’ll need to go to rehab. They also miss Ace and want justice.

“It’s how you raise them,” Rochelle Silva said. “He had to be raising them as a fighter does, because they were on attack.”

“I hope they put them down,” Arianna Silva said. “As much as I’m saddened for my mom that it happened to her, I’m so happy it didn’t happen to a little girl or boy walking down the street with their mom or dad.”

An initial investigation showed that the owner had opened his door when one of the pit bulls escaped. When he turned to get the dog, the other dogs pushed through the door and immediately began attacking the woman.

The incident remains under investigation.

All six dogs have been seized by Taunton Animal Control and will be quarantined prior to a hearing with the owner.



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