ATLANTA — The U.S. Justice Department sued Georgia on Friday over a new election law that includes restrictions on voting, setting up a legal showdown over Republican-led changes that President Joe Biden and other Democrats cast as disproportionately harmful to Black voters. The challenge seeks to overturn portions of Senate Bill 202, the 98-page rewrite of election rules that imposes new voter identification requirements, limits the use of ballot drop boxes, shifts early voting days and gives the Republican-controlled Legislature more oversight in elections. It’s the first major voting rights...
Russian-born reality TV star fired after TLC uncovers multiple racist posts trashing Black Americans
On Wednesday, The Daily Beast reported that Alina Kozhevnikova, a cast member of the reality show 90 Day Fiancé, has been fired by TLC after just a month on the show, after her series of past virulent racist social media posts surfaced.
"Kozhevnikova first appeared on the fifth season ... alongside her husband-to-be, Caleb Greenwood. However, her fairytale ending is now in jeopardy thanks to newly surfaced screenshots of her offensive Facebook and Instagram posts from 2014 and 2015," reported Jordan Julian. "One screenshot shared on Twitter is riddled with racial stereotypes and slurs, with Kozhevnikova using the N-word a staggering eight times in a description of a party in her native Russia. She used the N-word again, replacing the Gs with Qs, in an Instagram post that shows her wearing a bandana and a dark, drawn-on beard. In the photo’s caption, she refers to 'gold diggin'' and 'gangstas.' Other incriminating posts mockingly perpetuate stereotypes of Muslim and Asian people."
In a statement, a TLC network spokesperson stated, "TLC discontinued filming with Alina Kozhevnikova following the recent discovery of her past social media statements. She will not appear on the upcoming Tell All, any future seasons of the franchise and starting next month, she will no longer appear on ‘Before the 90 Days.’ TLC does not tolerate racism or discrimination of any kind."
Earlier this week, Kozhevnikova appeared to defend herself, writing on Instagram, "my friends, my family and those who met me in person know who I really am and & who I am not. Answers are coming."
Several recent controversies have erupted around public figures using racial slurs. A Louisiana judge resigned last month after video showed the N-word being used in her house during an attempted burglary — which she initially tried to blame on sedatives.
A police union is coming to the defense of a veteran sergeant who was caught on video choking a female colleague after she tried to de-escalate a Black man's arrest.
Sunrise, Fla. police Sgt. Christopher Pullease, who was placed on administrative leave following the incident, is now under criminal investigation.
Body cam video showed Pullease, 46, threatening a Black suspect with pepper spray, and engaging in a verbal altercation with him, after he'd already been taken into custody and placed in the back of a patrol car.
After a 28-year-old female officer grabbed Pullease by the back of his belt and tried to pull him away, he turned around and briefly put his hand around her throat, before grabbing her by the vest and pushing her against another patrol car.
During a Sunrise City Commission meeting on Wednesday, the president of the local Fraternal Order of Police took issue with recent comments by Police Chief Anthony Rosa, who called Pullease's conduct "disgusting" in an interview with Miami's Channel 7.
“It’s not about Chief Rosa’s exclusive interview with Channel 7, it’s more about the investigation itself,” Fraternal Order of Police President Steven Negron told the commission.
“He’s, in a way, our only juror,” Negron said, calling for Chief Rosa to be removed from the investigation. “You have our juror stating that the subject person did certain things inappropriate, disgusting, wrong, and in any trial if you heard that from a juror, you would recuse him immediately.”
Commissioners rejected Negron's request, noting that the chief is also being criticized for not acting swiftly enough. Sunrise Mayor Micheal Ryan even compared the case to George Floyd's murder.
"When it seemed like a civil discussion was beginning to wrap up, tensions started to spiral out of control," Channel 7 reports.
Commissioner Joseph Scuotto made comments defending Pullease, saying the case had been "spun in a way that's so ridiculous." Scuotto also reportedly called the suspect in the arrest that led to the incident a "piece of sh*t," and said the case has nothing to do with George Floyd.
Commissioner Mark Douglas, who his Black, responded by asking Scuotto if he was blaming the incident on the suspect.
"I'm sure George Floyd was a piece of sh*t who caused it, too," Douglas said. "What are you defending? ... Shut up, Joey."
“Don’t tell me to shut up,” Scuotto responded.
“I’m telling you to shut up,” Douglas said.
“What are you going to do?" Scuotto responded. "Don’t tell me to shut up. Who do you think you are? A tough guy?”
According to Channel 6, the commission "quickly took a recess after all of that."
"The internal investigation, as well as criminal investigation, is still ongoing," the station reported.
Watch the report below.
Meeting looking into Sunrise Police sergeant who grabbed female officer by throat gets heated www.youtube.com
Hitler-loving MAGA rioter who wore 'Camp Auschwitz' hoodie pleads guilty -- but to a mere misdemeanor
More than a year after capturing national notoriety as the MAGA rioter who wore a “Camp Auschwitz” hoodie on January 6, Robert Keith Packer has plead guilty to the lightest of charges, a misdemeanor of “parading” at the Capitol.
“(Packer) could face up to six months in prison when he is sentenced in April, though many defendants who pleaded to the same charge and are not accused of violence received much less or no jail time.”
If that’s the case, Packer’s case would serve as a prime example of how far punishment of the insurrectionists has fallen below public expectations in the aftermath of the riot just a year ago. If his wasn’t a hate crime, it’s hard to imagine what would qualify as such.
More from CNN:
“An image of Packer inside the Capitol went viral on social media during the riot, sparking shock and outrage. The black sweatshirt had a graphic image of a skull and crossbones and bore the name of the Nazi concentration camp where about 1.1 million people were killed during World War II -- most of them Jews. The bottom of his shirt read, "Work brings freedom," which is the rough translation of the phrase "Arbeit macht frei" that was on the concentration camp's gates.”
If that weren’t enough, CNN also reports that “when FBI agents searched Packer's home after his arrest in January, they found swastika artwork, a folder titled 'Whites Only Material,' and pictures of Hitler and other Nazi imagery, according to court documents."
Packer is now free pending sentencing. The light punishment that apparently awaits him will likely not connect any dots between his Nazi sympathies and how he spent his 20 minutes illegally storming the U.S. Capitol.
As Law&Crime previously reported, Packer was allegedly part of the group that moved toward the office of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), who is Jewish.
“Mr. Packer has agreed to talk with the FBI about the events of that day and allow the FBI to peruse any social media accounts he might have,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Mona Furst told U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols, a Trump appointee, at the hearing.
“Furst outlined Packer’s actions at the Capitol that day. Prosecutors say Packer drove from his home in Newport News, Virginia, in order to attend Trump’s so-called “Stop the Steal” rally. He then joined the pro-Trump mob and entered the Capitol building itself, despite seeing broken windows and tear gas being deployed by police.
“Furst said that Packer was in the Capitol building for around 20 minutes. He was present when a crowd of rioters breached a police line, and was part of the group that broke apart and took Pelosi’s nameplate. He also went to Statuary Hall.
“At the time the defendant entered the building, he knew that he did not have permission to enter the building,” Furst said.
“The parading and picketing charge has become the predominant charge to which at least Jan. 6 defendants have pleaded guilty. Sentences have ranged from probation to the maximum six months’ incarceration. Defendants that received the six-month jail sentence received credit for time served; so far, the longest jail term for a defendant not previously detained was three months behind bars.
Packer had also been charged with disorderly conduct and knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without authority. Those charges will presumably be dropped at Packer’s sentencing hearing, set for April 7.”
You can read the FBI criminal complaint against Packer here.