Archive for February, 2017

Police shooting of unarmed Texas teen settled for $3.25 million

Police shooting of unarmed Texas teen settled for $3.25 million

The city council of Austin, Texas, has approved a $3.25 million settlement with the family of African-American teenager David Joseph, who was fatally shot by a city police officer in 2016. The settlement is the largest of its kind sanctioned by the city.

The Austin City Council authorized the settlement on Thursday minutes after Mayor Steve Adler announced the sum, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

The settlement stems from a February 8, 2016, encounter during which Officer Geoffrey Freeman, also a black male, fired twice at a nude, unarmed Joseph, 17, in response to calls that a man was harassing residents in a North Austin neighborhood.

Freeman had said he shot at Joseph when the teen charged at him, and that he feared Joseph could overpower him. The former officer became the first member of the department to be fired over a fatal shooting in eight years, the Statesman previously reported.

The use of lethal force by Freeman was found by the Austin Police Department to be unjustified. He was dismissed from the department a month after the fatal shooting. A disciplinary memo released in March 2016 said that Freeman also violated department policies governing response to resistance, people who indicate erratic substance-based behavior and neglect of duty, the Statesman reported.

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He’s only 7 years old, but this Maryland boy ‘could be the next Einstein’

Tuesday is museum day for 7-year-old Romanieo Golphin Jr. So one recent afternoon, the boy and his father visited the National Gallery of Art. As they approached works by neoclassical painters, Romanieo Golphin Sr. spoke to his son about technique in a hushed tone.

“Typically, you’ll have the master in the room and then his students,” the father said.

Golphin quizzed his son about a painting across the exhibit. A correct answer, he promised, would mean extra french fries at lunch.

“That’s John Singer Sargent,” Romanieo said. He was wrong — but it was difficult to see the painting from that distance. After that, he easily picked out works by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres and J.M.W. Turner.

The home-schooling session was typical for the Silver Spring boy, who has shown what his parents, and some academics, say is an unusual intellect. He loves art and shows an aptitude for music, but Romanieo’s passion is science.

Though he’s still into Legos and candy, Romanieo recently had an opportunity that many scientists dream about. He and his family were invited to the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), which runs the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s biggest science experiment, in Switzerland.

“It was excellent!” Romanieo said of the November trip, which he called as awesome as a hundred thousand ginger squares, a favorite treat.

To Steven Goldfarb, the experimental physicist at CERN who invited the Golphin family to tour the facilities, Romanieo is no ordinary boy.

“Romanieo Jr. looked like he would be a lot of fun to host, and my hunch was correct!” Goldfarb wrote in an email.

Struck by the boy’s age and interest in physics, Goldfarb named him a CERN “ambassador” to the Washington area, with the prospect of attracting more young people to the experiments there and to science overall.

One reason he likes science, Romanieo said, is the “big words,” like “cyclohexanecarboxylic acid,” which would be a mouthful for any adult. “They’re not a mouthful for me,” he said.

Romanieo Golphin Jr., 7, whispers to his mother, Cheri Philip, a personality psychologist. His parents home-school their only son. (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Romanieo Golphin Jr. visits the Smithsonian American Art Museum with his parents. They often use area museums as learning tools in their home schooling. (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Romanieo has never been enrolled in a public or private school. His father is an adviser for the music department at the University of North Carolina. His mother, Cheri Philip, is a personality psychologist and serves as the research director for their educational consulting firm, the Robeson Group. Dissatisfied with the outcomes in traditional education, both parents have committed themselves to home-schooling Romanieo and preparing him for the future their way.

“Enough with the Industrial Age approach to education in the 21st century,” Golphin said.

Golphin spent some of his youth in the projects of Brooklyn and remembers other gifted young African Americans who felt trapped by their circumstan Some had broken homes and parents unprepared to handle their children’s thirst for knowledge.

Roughly 3 percent of students are home-schooled in the United States. When Romanieo was born, Golphin and Philip discussed an advanced education for their only child, knowing that studies have shown that infants and toddlers possess a greater capacity for absorbing information than previously thought. Romanieo’s mother was skeptical at first. But as he grew, their son seemed to grasp the high-level concepts his father was feeding him.


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Dirty Vaccines: Every Human Vaccine Tested Was Contaminated With Metals and Debris in New Study

Originally published on Children’s Medical Safety Research Institute 

Dirty Vaccines: Every Human Vaccine Tested Was Contaminated With Metals and Debris in New Study

Researchers examining 44 samples of 30 different vaccines found dangerous contaminants, including red blood cells in one vaccine and metal toxicants in every single sample tested – except in one animal vaccine.

Using extremely sensitive new technologies not used in vaccine manufacturing, Italian scientists reported they were “baffled” by their discoveries which included single particles and aggregates of organic debris including red cells of human or possibly animal origin and metals including lead, tungsten, gold, and chromium, that have been linked to autoimmune disease and leukemia.

In the study, published this week in the International Journal of Vaccines and Vaccination, the researchers led by Antoinetta Gatti, of the National Council of Research of Italy and the Scientific Director of Nanodiagnostics, say their results “show the presence of micro- and nano-sized particulate matter composed of inorganic elements in vaccine samples” not declared in the products’ ingredients lists.

Lead particles were found in the cervical cancer vaccines, Gardasil and Cevarix, for example, and in the seasonal flu vaccine Aggripal manufactured by Novartis as well as in the Meningetec vaccine meant to protect against meningitis C.

Samples of an infant vaccine called Infarix Hexa (against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, hepatitis B, poliomyelitis and haemophilus influenzae type B) manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline was found to contain stainless steel, tungsten and a gold-zinc aggregate.

Other metal contaminants included platinum, silver, bismuth, iron, and chromium. Chromium (alone or in alloy with iron and nickel) was identified in 25 of the human vaccines from Italy and France that were tested.

GSK’s Fluarix vaccine for children three years and older contained 11 metals and aggregates of metals. Similar aggregates to those identified in the vaccines have been shown to be prevalent in cases of leukemia, the researchers noted.

Many of the vaccines contained iron and iron alloys which, according to the researchers, “can corrode and the corrosion products exert a toxicity affecting the tissues”.

The researchers supply an image of an area in a drop of Sanofi Pasteur MSD’s Repevax (diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio) vaccine “where the morphology of red cells – we cannot tell whether they are human or animal- is clearly visible” along with the presence of “debris” composed of aluminum, bromine, silicon, potassium and titanium.

Feligen, the only veterinary vaccine tested in the 44 total vaccines sampled, proved to be the only sample free from inorganic contamination.

The investigation revealed aluminum and sodium chloride, the usual component of saline, as was expected, because they are named ingredients of most vaccines. Using a Field Emission Gun Environmental Electron Scanning Microscope, the researchers produced photos of this aluminum salt which formed white crystalline branches similar to frost on a windowpane on the top of the droplets of vaccine liquid. A German-made vaccine against allergies produced a layer of inorganic salts so thick that the researchers could not penetrate the drop not to detect other particulate contaminants.

Aluminum has a documented neurotoxicity all by itself. The French veterinary vaccines exclude it for this reason. The human ones don’t. The researchers express concern about synergy of multiple toxins added to this known neurotoxin. “It is a well-known fact in toxicology that contaminants exert a mutual, synergic effect, and as the number of contaminants increases, the effects grow less and less predictable. The more so when some substances are unknown.”

“The quantity of foreign bodies detected and, in some cases, their unusual chemical compositions baffled us,” the researchers note. “In most circumstances, the combinations detected are very odd as they have no technical use, cannot be found in any material handbook and look like the result of the random formation occurring, for example, when waste is burnt. In any case, whatever their origin, they should not be present in any injectable medicament, let alone in vaccines, more in particular those meant for infants.”

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New Arkansas law allows rapists to sue victims seeking abortion

New Arkansas law allows rapists to sue victims seeking abortion

A pregnant woman’s husband will be able to sue to prevent his wife from having an abortion, even in cases of rape and incest, under a new law that could come into effect as early as spring.

The new law, Act 45 – the Unborn Child Protection From Dismemberment Abortion Act, will also allow husbands to sue doctors who carry out abortions for civil damages, as well as block terminations using injunctions.

Parents and legal guardians would also be able to sue to prevent minors from having abortions, raising concerns for victims of sexual abuse and incest.

The pro-life Act 45 was sped through in only two months by the Republican-led state government.

It would also see dilation and evacuation (D&E) terminations, the safest and most common form of second trimester abortions, become a felony with offenders facing six years in prison or a $10,000 fine.

The state of Arkansas carried out more than 680 D&E procedures in 2015.

The bill’s co-sponsor, Andy Mayberry, a father of four girls, is the president of Arkansas Right to Life and member of the Missionary Baptist church.

He referred to D&E procedures as “gruesome, barbaric” and said “no civilized society should embrace” them.

Mayberry has defended his bill by pointing out that, while the father of a fetus can prevent a woman from having an abortion, the father would not be able to sue for monetary damages if he had raped her or committed incest.

Six other states have passed similar laws, inspired by National Right to Life’s model legislation.

In Alabama, Kansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma, legal challenges have temporarily stalled legislation from coming into effect. Mississippi’s and West Virginia’s versions of the law passed in spring 2016.



American tax avoiders could lose passport and face travel ban

American tax avoiders could lose passport and face travel ban

The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) says that under the so-called FAST Act it will start certifying tax debt to the State Department, which may then refuse to issue or renew a taxpayer’s passport.

The FAST Act (Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act) was passed by the Congress and signed into law by President Obama in 2015. The purpose is to provide long-term funding for transportation projects, including new highways. It also included an important provision allowing the State Department to revoke the passports of delinquent taxpayers.

According to the IRS, certifications of the taxpayers’ information will begin in early 2017. It will update its web page to indicate when the process has been implemented.

“Upon receiving certification, the State Department may revoke your passport. If the department decides to revoke it, prior to revocation, the department may limit your passport to return travel to the US,” the IRS statement said.

Under US law a “seriously delinquent” tax debt is defined as “an unpaid, legally enforceable federal tax liability” of more than $50,000, including interest and penalties. The $50,000 limit will be adjusted each year for inflation and cost of living. The limit is not per year but cumulative meaning that it’s the total tax debt that matters.

If a person is seriously delinquent under the new law, the IRS is required to notify him or her in writing at the time that it certifies the debt to the State Department. The latter will then hold the passport application or renewal for 90 days to allow for resolving any errors, make full payment, or enter into a satisfactory payment plan.

“There is no grace period for resolving your debt before the State Department revokes an existing passport,” said the IRS.

To get off the list, one should prove that the debt is fully satisfied, is legally unenforceable or is not a seriously delinquent tax debt under the statute.

Having one’s passport revoked potentially limits more than just international travel. In some of America’s states, if a driver’s license doesn’t meet set standards they won’t be accepted by airlines for domestic flights after January 22, 2018.

Moreover, starting from October 2020, every air traveler in the US will need an ID-compliant license or another acceptable form of identification, such as a passport, for domestic flights.



‘Surreal moment’: 7yo finds bank robber’s stash in South Carolina

‘Surreal moment’: 7yo finds bank robber’s stash in South Carolina

A seven-year-old boy made an amazing discovery after uncovering a bag full of cash in a South Carolina gas station bin that could help catch an elusive serial bank robber.

Griffin Steele and his father were on their way to a toy store when they stopped at a gas station in Horry County. As they walked toward the store, Griffin found a $20 note with red dye on it on the ground.

“He handed the twenty to me and it didn’t look quite right,” Shane told MyHorryNews. “It was red and just didn’t feel right so I had the clerk check to see if it was real. She said it was okay.”

It was only when Griffin was putting rubbish in one of the station’s bins that he then noticed “a ton of money.”

“I’d never seen that much money before,” he said. “And it was all covered in red stuff.”

Shane called the police as soon as Griffin told him about the cash. “It was a surreal moment,” he said. “That will probably never happen again in my lifetime, finding that much money.”

The police told them the money came from one of two recent local bank robberies at Conway National Bank and TD Bank that took place within a week of each other. Police also received a call about money with red dye found on Glenns Bay Road earlier that day.

Brian Wilson Humphreys Jr is the suspect in both robberies and remains on the run. According to police reports, a dye pack detonated inside the bag of money after Humphreys fled the scene of the TD Bank robbery.