Tag Archives: Florida

Academy Sports manager fired weeks after intercepting gun thief in Florida store

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UPDATE: Dean has been rehired by Academy after the company faced public backlash for firing him.

Bad move, Academy. We were thinking of purchasing a firearm from one of your stores. We’ll now make that purchase somewhere else.

From Fox News: A sporting goods store employee, who last month helped catch a suspect allegedly trying to swipe a weapon, was suspended and later lost his job at the Florida business following the incident, his lawyer said.

Dean Crouch, 32, was working at the Academy Sports store in Tallahassee on June 29 when robbery suspect Jason White allegedly tried to steal a gun, the Tallahassee Democrat reported.

After White reportedly tried to flee with the stolen firearm he’d requested to see, Crouch stepped in and ultimately detained him.

Crouch, an assistant manager at the store, was nearby when the incident occurred and heard employees yelling “stop that guy,” his attorney, Ryan Hobbs, told Fox News. While police made their way to the scene, the suspect was relocated to an office at the business, he said.

Hobbs said the suspect had attempted to make off with a .40 caliber handgun and matching ammunition.

The Tallahassee Police Department, who arrested the suspect, wrote on Facebook that “employees detained a man who tried to run out of the store with a firearm, ammunition, and a backpack, which were stolen from the business.”

The suspect also allegedly stole two weapons from a pawn shop earlier the same day, police said.

Hobbs claimed his client was placed on suspension in the days after the incident amid a policy that prohibits employees from placing their hands on customers (how does this thief qualify as a customer?) while they’re in the store. Crouch lost his job on Tuesday, he said, adding that his client had been “suspended and terminated for preventing this thief from stealing this weapon.”

“Academy has decided to, instead of treating him like a hero he is, they terminated his employment effective immediately because he put his hands on Mr. White,” Hobbs told the Tallahassee Democrat.

Left without a job, Hobbs told Fox News that Crouch – who has a wife and two small children – put their home up for sale as “a direct result of him losing his job at Academy Sports.”

“They’re just scared,” he said.

A representative for Academy Sports did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment. But company spokeswoman Elise Hasbrook told the Democrat that Academy’s treatment of the former employee’s conduct, as well as his eventual firing, complied with company policy.

“While the incident ended without injury, actions inconsistent with corporate policies were taken,” she told the outlet. “We addressed the matter with the local store and individuals involved.”

Hobbs told Fox News that they are “exploring” their “options” but at this point, no lawsuit has been filed. At the moment, he said they’re more concerned with “trying to protect his rights” and finding him a new job.

Hobbs also told the Democrat that Academy’s policy might warrant a reexamination.

“My instincts tell me they are concerned more about people like Mr. White suing them for being stopped in the course of a theft than they are about rewarding or acknowledging in a positive manner that Mr. Crouch may have saved lives,” he told the outlet.

DCG

Lawyer for Houston serial killer Danny Bible says he’s “too sick” to execute

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Rapist and murderer Danny Bible

Firing squad works for me.

From Houston Chronicle: Lawyers for Houston-area serial killer Danny Bible filed a civil rights suit Friday alleging the aging death row inmate is in such poor health that any attempts to execute him will end in a gruesome, botched procedure.

The so-called “ice pick killer” has Parkinson’s, bad veins and a slew of other medical conditions that raise the possibility of a prolonged and painful lethal injection process his lawyers argue could violate the 8th Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment.

The 66-year-old is scheduled to die on June 27.

“Texas will almost certainly join Alabama and Ohio and add itself to the unconscionable list of botched executions in America,” his attorney Jeremy Schepers told the Chronicle.

“Mr. Bible is an elderly, frail man who has been confined to a wheelchair for the last 15 years and his health is rapidly deteriorating,” he continued. “Recent medical evaluations confirm that his veins are inaccessible and unsuitable for placing an IV. Any attempts to carry out the execution will amount to torture, cause excruciating pain, and violate his constitutional rights.”

Bible’s bid for reprieve comes months after a high-profile botch that forced officials in Alabama to call off the execution of Doyle Hamm, a 61-year-old death row prisoner with lymphoma. In February, a lethal injection team there spent hours poking the condemned killer’s arms, legs and groin to find a usable vein before ultimately giving up as the midnight deadline approached.

Previously, Ohio saw similarly botched procedures in the attempted execution of Romell Broom in 2009 and Alva Campbell in 2017. Schepers writes that Bible is in worse health than Hamm, Campbell or Broom.

The Texas lethal injection preparation – a part of the process media and witnesses are not permitted to observe – involves inserting two IV lines, while the prisoner is strapped to a gurney.

But lying down causes Bible shortness of breath, and his lawyers argue that he would “likely be choking and gasping for air” during attempts to hook up IVs that may be “futile” anyway.

Bible’s legal claim, which lays out a “galaxy of medical issues” in detail over the course of 90 pages, names Texas Department of Criminal Justice officials and “anonymous execution team members” among its numerous defendants.

This isn’t the first time a Texas death row prisoner has fought his sentence by questioning the lethal injection process. Thomas “Bart” Whitaker – a Fort Bend man eventually spared by Gov. Greg Abbott – was one of three inmates behind a years-long suit alleging the drugs Texas uses could cause undue suffering.

And earlier this year, hours before his February execution, John Battaglia unsuccessfully tried winning a stay by raising concerns about two allegedly botched executions his lawyers said were caused by too-old drugs.

Both of those cases focused on the possibility that the drugs themselves would cause suffering, a claim that could more generally apply to any death row prisoner. Bible’s argument focuses more narrowly on the possibility that he, specifically, is unfit to execute.

“To my knowledge this is the first suit of its kind in Texas,” said lethal injection expert and death penalty lawyer Maurie Levin, who worked on the Whitaker and Battaglia cases.

In Bible’s case, his lawyers suggest that an alternative method – firing squad or nitrogen gas – would decrease the risk of suffering.

Bible was initially sent to death row in 2003, more than two decades after the crime that landed him there.

A former drifter, Bible’s lengthy string of violence dates back to at least 1979. That May, a passerby found the bloodied, half-naked body of Inez Deaton along the slope of a Houston bayou. She’d been stabbed 11 times with an ice pick before her killer posed her corpse by the water.

For nearly two decades, Deaton’s slaying went unsolved – but Bible’s violent streak continued.

In the years that followed, Bible terrorized women in the Midwest, once setting his girlfriend’s car on fire because he didn’t like her haircut. After he returned to Texas and settled west of Fort Worth, he murdered his sister-in-law Tracy Powers and her infant son Justin. Then, he killed Powers’ roommate, Pam Hudgins, and left her body hanging from a roadside fence.

Following those killings, he fled to Montana, where he kidnapped a woman and raped an 11-year-old girl, according to court records.

Eventually, he was caught and in 1984 he pleaded guilty to Hudgins’ murder. He was sentenced to 25 years for the killing and 20 years for a Harris County robbery. He was released on parole eight years later, under a since-repealed mandatory supervision law.

While still on parole, he raped and molested multiple young relatives, including a 5-year-old. Then in 1998, he raped Tera Robinson in a Louisiana motel room before stuffing her into a duffel bag when he became enraged that he couldn’t maintain an erection. The woman broke free and called for help.

Bible was eventually caught in Florida, and freely admitted to his crimes under questioning.

Weeks after he was sentenced, Bible narrowly escaped death during a head-on-collision on the way to death row. The officer behind the wheel of the prison transport vehicle, 40-year-old John Bennett, died in the wreck, while Bible ended up in a wheelchair.

In past appeals, Bible’s attorneys have used his deteriorating medical condition to argue against his execution, saying he can’t be a danger in his current state.

Texas has already executed six men this year, including another Houston serial killer, Anthony Shore. Aside from Bible’s, there are seven other death dates on the calendar in Texas.

DCG

Parkland students plan bus tour to target places where NRA “bought and paid for politicians”

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Be sure to vocalize your true agenda while on the road, kids…

There were record gun sales in April, the second month in a row.

The NRA has reached 6,000,000 members.

The NRA had record attendance at their annual convention in Dallas last month.

The NRA broke a 15-year fundraising record in April.

Donations to the NRA PAC tripled after the #GunControlNow crowd started targeting the NRA.

But hey, you kids keep doing your anti-Second Amendment thing. Hope to see you soon in Oklahoma!

From USA Today: A group of students-turned-activists from Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School will be hitting the road next week on a nationwide bus tour aimed at educating voters — and encouraging them to actually vote to end gun violence.

“We’re going to places where the NRA has bought and paid for politicians who refuse to take simple steps to save our lives,” the March for Our Lives leaders said in a statement. The group will visit communities affected by gun violence “to meet fellow survivors and use our voices to amplify theirs.”

The March for Our Lives Road to Change will launch June 12 in Illinois, where the group will join the Peace March led by students from Chicago’s St. Sabina Academy. Cameron Kasky, one of the Florida group’s leaders, said Monday the two-month tour will make at least 75 stops in more than 20 states.

A separate tour will make stops in each of Florida’s 27 congressional districts.

“We can fix the political system,” Kasky said. “Our generation and the many generations that are helping us can change the game.”

The March for Our Lives drew millions of people to rallies across the nation and around the world demanding responsible gun laws. Its leaders included Kasky and several other Stoneman Douglas students who rose to national prominence in the days after a Valentine’s Day shooting rampage at the school killed 17 students and staff.

The last midterm elections, in 2014, drew the lowest turnout since World War II, Kasky said. He noted that 4 million teens will turn 18 this year.

“We are encouraging people around the country to educate themselves on their vote, to get out there and turn voting into more of an act of patriotism than a chore,” Kasky said.

The announcement came one day after graduation ceremonies honored the senior class, including four members slain in the attack — Nicholas Dworet, Joaquin Oliver, Meadow Pollack and Carmen Schentrup. Surprise commencement speaker Jimmy Fallon urged graduates to move forward and “don’t let anything stop you.”

DCG

Attempted Dixon school shooter used gun obtained by his mom, a prohibited possessor

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Last Wednesday, 19-year-old Matthew Milby attempted a school shooting at Dixon High School in central Illinois. The shooter was stopped by a resource officer who shot and wounded the former student.

How did the perp obtain his gun? From his mom who is a convicted felon.

Plenty of gun control laws on the books that should have prevented her from purchasing a firearm. Yet somehow the system failed, as has happened before. Beyond system failures, a convicted felon knows they are not allowed to have a gun.

From WQAD: WGN tv, a Tribune Media partner of WQAD, is reporting that suspected Dixon shooter Matthew Milby’s mother is a convicted felon who should not have legally been able to purchase a gun.

The Illinois State Police has confirmed Julie Milby purchased the 9-mm semi-automatic rifle her son brought to school Wednesday. But court records in Florida show her criminal history should have been a red flag on a background check.

On Wednesday Julie Milby told reporters, “There’s no justification for what he’s done. And he will take full responsibility for that.”

She also claimed she didn’t know how he got the gun. “We don’t have guns,” she said at the time. “I don’t have any guns in the house.”

Yet state police say it was her gun and she purchased it in 2012.

How she got it is still unclear. A review of court records shows Julie Milby, previously known as Julie Mitchell, was convicted of felony battery and felony resisting an officer with violence in Osceola County, Florida in 1991.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement says because of that conviction she would not have been able to get a gun from a licensed dealer in the state of Florida.

Julie Milby did not answer her door Friday when WGN Investigates arrived.

Her attorney Tom Murray told WGN he believes she bought the gun in Illinois, legally, and with a FOID card.  But he did not know about her 1991 felony convictions.

Illinois State Police won’t specify how she got the gun, or whether they ran a proper background check, because the case is still under investigation.

But in Illinois a felony conviction anywhere in the country disqualifies someone from getting a FOID card, which you need to buy a gun in Illinois.

When running a background check on Julie Milby, numerous felony convictions are shown. Someone in Florida stole her identity at one point. That individual claimed to be Julie when arrested. However, Florida officials say that happened after her 1991 felony convictions.

Florida officials say all of those cases still should have shown up on a background check for a gun, though, because they have not been officially removed from her record.

Milby also has an extensive arrest record in Lee County, Illinois. None of those cases, however, include felony convictions.

DCG

Florida high school assignment: Analyze child’s blood type with two possible baby daddies

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This is not surprising. Nor will this be the last time something like this happens.

From NY Post: Omar Austin had to do a double take when he spotted a sexually explicit question on his teenage daughter’s homework assignment this week.

“This needs to be seen. [What the hell] is going on in our schools???” the Florida father asked as he read the question aloud in a video posted to Facebook on Wednesday.

The mulitiple choice question reportedly read, Ursula was devastated when her boyfriend broke up with her after having sex. To get revenge, she had sex with his best friend the next day. Ursula had a beautiful baby girl nine months later. Ursula has type O blood, her ex-boyfriend has AB blood and his best friend is type A blood. If her baby daddy is her ex-boyfriend what could the possible blood type(s) of her baby NOT be.

As of Friday evening, the video has been viewed more than 500 times and sparked a handful of comments from concerned residents.

“Someone actually gets paid to make the test. I’m assuming someone checks the wording of the question? What happened to common sense!” one Facebook user wrote.

“Wow… just wow!” another exclaimed.

Austin told First Coast News in Florida he immediately contacted the principal at Westside High School in Jacksonville to flag the inappropriate question that was on his eleventh-grade daughter’s practice test for her upcoming anatomy exam.

“This was a district-generated worksheet that her teacher just printed offline and it was given to the students,” Austin explained to the local news station. “I want it to be acknowledged. I want it to be reviewed. And I want it to be changed.”

Duval County Public Schools said in a statement obtained by First Coast News that it agreed the question was “highly inappropriate” and confirmed it was not part of a district assessment.

“Immediately upon being made aware of this matter, school and district leaders began conducting a review of the situation. Appropriate and corrective action will be taken,” the district stated. “We encourage parents to contact their school leaders directly if they ever have any concerns about their child’s school and instructional experience so that we can immediately work to problem-solve.”

Austin called the “biased” question “sad and a disgrace to our educational system.” He said he hopes the school will be more careful in the future and thoroughly read every assignment they pass out to high schoolers. “I think that we can do better,” he added.

The school district said they don’t believe the inappropriate worksheet was passed out to any other schools but they are still investigating.

See also:

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Happy Tuesday: The NRA broke a 15-year fundraising record

nra This is what happens when proggies try to mess with our Constitutional rights.

From Miami Herald: The National Rifle Association’s Political Victory Fund raised $2.4 million from March 1 to March 31, the group’s first full month of political fundraising since the nation’s deadliest high school shooting on Valentine’s Day, according to filings submitted to the Federal Elections Commission. The total is $1.5 million more than the organization raised during the same time period in 2017, when it took in $884,000 in donations, and $1.6 million more than it raised in February 2018.

The $2.4 million haul is the most money raised by the NRA’s political arm in one month since June 2003, the last month when electronic federal records were readily available. It surpasses the $1.1 million and $1.5 million raised in January and February 2013, the two months after the Sandy Hook school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

Most of the donations, $1.9 million of the $2.4 million total, came from small donors who gave less than $200. The NRA doles out money to political campaigns from the victory fund, but most of its spending is on activity that isn’t directly linked with a lawmakers’ campaign where the group is not bound by state and federal campaign finance limits. For example, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio received only $9,900 in direct contributions from the NRA during his 2016 U.S. Senate campaign, but his campaign benefited from $3.3 million in outside spending from the NRA to help him defeat Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy.

In Florida, the NRA has donated to four Republican members of Congress during the 2018 cycle, including Miami Republican Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, but the four donations are $2,750 or less, a pittance when a competitive congressional campaign typically costs millions. The NRA hasn’t donated to candidates at the state level in Florida for years. Instead, the group’s political power comes from its thousands of members who are typically a powerful voting bloc in Republican primary elections.

The NRA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Marion Hammer, the NRA’s powerful lobbyist in Florida, recently circulated a letter to members titled “It’s Time to Name the Betrayers Who Voted For Gun Control,” an attack on Republican members of the Florida Legislature who helped to pass a gun bill that raised the age to legally purchase a firearm from 18 to 21, instituted a three-day waiting period for purchasing rifles and shotguns, and banned devices called bump stocks that allow semi-automatic rifles to fire at a higher rate.

“We did NOT support the gratuitous gun control provisions added to the bill by REPUBLICANS,” the letter reads. “Republican legislators are responsible for passage of the ‘gun control bill.’ They lacked the courage to uphold their oath of office and keep their word to constituents who voted for them. They were in total control. They no longer deserve your trust.”

The letter went on to call state Sen. Doug Broxson the “lynchpin” who helped pass the bill by one vote in Tallahassee’s upper chamber. The Gulf Breeze Republican defended himself in an op-ed after the vote, saying, “When politicians cannot agree in Washington, they pack up and go home, leaving the American people frustrated and angry. Here in Florida, that’s just not how we do things.”

The NRA spent $31 million to attack Hillary Clinton or support Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign, and the NRA’s lobbying arm also spends millions on federal elections, but it does not have to report information on its donors or finances to the FEC. The NRA’s Political Victory Fund ended the month with $5.8 million on hand as the 2018 campaign season ramps up.

Gun control groups haven’t been able to match the NRA’s fundraising.

Everytown for Gun Safety’s Political Action Fund raised $13,580 in March while former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ Political Action Committee raised $129,589 in March. Two South Florida lawmakers have received donations from gun control groups this election cycle. Miami Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo, who introduced a bill to ban bump stocks after the Las Vegas shooting, received $1,000, while Democratic state Rep. David Richardson, who is running for Congress to replace retiring Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, received $14,108 from gun control groups.

The March for Our Lives group founded after the Parkland shooting has raised $3.5 million since Feb. 18 via the online service GoFundMe, though that money was put toward organizing marches around the country and helping families of the victims.

See also:

h/t Twitchy

DCG

Not a coward: Florida school resource officer hailed a hero after responding to school shooting

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A man who knows his duty: Sheriff James Long/Marion County Sheriff’s Office photo

Pay attention Broward Cowards: That is how you do your job.

From Fox News: A Florida school resource officer was hailed a hero after immediately jumping into action and arresting a man who was suspected of shooting a student Friday.

Deputy James “Jimmy” Long of the Marion County Sheriff’s Office was hailed a hero by his colleagues Friday after he arrested the suspected gunman Sky Bouche just three minutes after he opened fire at Forest high School in Ocala, Fla. Bouche allegedly shot through a classroom door and pellets hit a 17-year-old student in the ankle. The student was taken to the hospital with a non-life-threatening wound to his ankle.

Bouche, 19, said, “Sorry,” followed by, “It doesn’t matter anyway,” to reporters as he was led from the school in handcuffs by several deputies. Authorities said Bouche was a former student at the school.

“I didn’t shoot anyone,” he said to reporters. He ignored most of the other questions until asked what he’d say to the shooting victim. That’s when he said, “Sorry.”

Other people credited with helping dilute the incident include Kelly McManis-Panasuk, a teacher at the school who spoke with Bouche during the incident as Long and the school’s principal Brent Carson rushed over. Bouche was not injured and “didn’t offer any resistance when arrested,” Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods said.

Woods praised Long’s quick response as well as school personnel.

Long “did not hesitate. He went right in,” Woods said at a news conference. Woods said Long heard a “large, loud banging sound” and immediately responded.

“Marion County does everything to protect their children,” Woods said.

Bouche was held on charges of “terrorism, aggravated assault with a firearm, culpable negligence, carrying a concealed firearm, possession of a firearm on school property, possession of a short-barrelled shotgun, interference in school function and armed trespass on school property,” the Ocala Star-Banner reported.

Authorities said the suspected gunman carried the weapon in a guitar case inside the school. The school along with all other schools in the district were placed on a lockdown following the incident.

The injured student, who was not identified, told officials that he was “glad it was me and not one of my friends.”

Read the rest of the story here.

DCG