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Oklahoma health department official sent threats to herself and blamed it on angry pot smokers

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The Oklahoma Department of Health is fielding a lot of anger for over-regulating medical marijuana after 57 percent of the state approved it in a June election. One lead attorney for the department even claimed she was getting threats. When the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation got involved, however, it was discovered the threats were sent by the attorney herself.

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According to the Tulsa World, Julie Ezell has submitted her resignation and been taken into custody for false reporting.

“I’m so sorry,” Ezell said to interim Health Commissioner Tom Bates in an email.

A probable cause affidavit shows that the email to Bates came two hours after Ezell confessed to the false threats to an OSBI agent. She’s been charged with two felonies and one misdemeanor.

According to the court records, Ezell used a fake email made on ProtonMail, an encrypted service, at 2 a.m. on July 8. This after her phone showed searches for whether ProtonMail logged IP addresses and payment information. Her phone then showed access to the ProtonMail account [email protected]

“We will stop YOU and your greed. Any way it takes to end your evil and protect what is ours. We will watch you,” the email she allegedly sent said.

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She then sent the threatening emails to herself about the implementation of the marijuana law. Half an hour later, Ezell reportedly sent a text message “F*ck, text me when you are up. I just got a pretty threatening email about medical marijuana.” The report did not say to whom the text was sent.

Ezell had deleted her search history after accessing ProtonMail and once again after sending herself another threatening email and another text message to the same person reporting she had received “another one.”

That email read: “We will expose your corruption and evil. We would hate to hurt a pretty lady. You will hear us. We are just beginning.”

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Later that day, another email appeared from the ProtonMail account with her address and description of her cars as well as a message saying, “You appear distinguished in glasses. Wear them for the camera.”

In a statement, Ezell’s attorney tried to do damage control by refuting any judgement on her and instead painted it as passion for her work.

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“These charges do not reflect who she is as a person, nor do they reflect the type of advocate she has been for the people of the State of Oklahoma,” attorney Ed Blau told the Tulsa World via email. “These allegations will be answered, and additional relevant information will be provided by us at the appropriate time.”

He called her a “loyal and dedicated public servant.”

A press release from the OSBI spoke about the wasted resources the department dedicated to investigate her false claims of threats.

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“During the investigation, nine OSBI agents, three officers with Edmond Police Department and two officers with OU Health Science Center were dispatched to work the case and to ensure Ezell’s safety to and from work and home,” the release states.

The Oklahoma Department of Health has two lawsuits pending, saying that they overstepped the law that was passed with their regulation of medical marijuana. One lawsuit from the Oklahoma ACLU alleges a breach of the 14th Amendment because the department would require a pregnancy test for women seeking medical marijuana licenses. Currently there is no other such requirement anywhere in the United States, nor does Oklahoma require a pregnancy test for opioid prescriptions.


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Buffalo has a long history of protecting cops from criminal charges: report

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On Saturday, The Daily Beast documented the recent history of use of force in the Buffalo Police Department, which is reeling from controversy as two officers face assault charges for shoving a 75-year-old protester to the ground.

"As shocking as this all may be to outsiders, the shoving of demonstrator Martin Gugino and the defiant response of officers to an effort to discipline two of their own is indicative of the state of police affairs in Buffalo," wrote Jim Heaney. "Has been for a long time, not that you have to go back too far to find other episodes of brutality that have been captured on video."

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Internet disgusted after Buffalo first responders cheer cops charged with assaulting 75-year-old protester

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Commenters on Twitter expressed both contempt and disgust for Buffalo firefighters and police officers who turned out in front of Buffalo City Court to support two suspended police officers with applause and cheering.

Moments after officers Aaron Torglaski and Robert McCabe were charged with second-degree assault and then released without having to post bail, they were greeted as heroes outside the courthouse.

After a video was posted showing the celebration, commenters on Twitter vented at cops and firefighters for defending the two officers who assaulted the 75-year-old man who had to be rushed to a hospital after they shoved him to the ground where he sustained a head injury.

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Donald Trump’s lurch toward fascism is backfiring spectacularly

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

During the 2016 campaign, as Donald Trump railed against "Mexican rapists" and other "criminal aliens," pollsters found that the share of Americans who said that immigrants worked hard and made a positive contribution to our society increased significantly, and noticed a similar decline in the share who said they take citizens' jobs and burden our social safety net. After Trump was elected and began pursuing his Muslim ban, the share of respondents who held a positive view of Islam also increased pretty dramatically. I'm not aware of any polling of the general public about transgender troops serving in the military before Trump decided to discharge them, but Gallup found that 71 percent of respondents opposed his position after he did.

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