Tag Archives: pleads

Sherman pleads not guilty to five misdemeanors

Richard Sherman was charged earlier on Friday with two domestic violence counts, driving under the influence, resisting arrest and endangering roadway workers; charges are all misdemeanors, punishable by up to 90 days in jail, or gross misdemeanors, punishable by up to one year

Last Updated: 17/07/21 9:01am

Richard Sherman, right, sits in court as his wife Ashley Sherman, left, looks on during a hearing

Richard Sherman, right, sits in court as his wife Ashley Sherman, left, looks on during a hearing

Free agent NFL cornerback Richard Sherman pleaded not guilty to five misdemeanor charges in connection with his arrest outside his in-laws’ home this week.

Sherman was charged earlier on Friday with two domestic violence counts, driving under the influence, resisting arrest and endangering roadway workers.

He was arrested in Redmond, Washington, after police said he crashed his car in a construction zone and then attempted to break into his in-laws’ house on Wednesday.

Before appearing for his court hearing, which he attended alongside his wife, Ashley Sherman, Sherman said he is “deeply remorseful” for his actions.

A statement on Twitter read: “I behaved in a manner I am not proud of. “I have been dealing with some personal challenges over the last several months, but that is not an excuse for how I acted.

“The importance of mental and emotional health is extremely real and I vow to get the help I need. I appreciate all of the people who have reached out in support of me and my family, including our community here in Seattle.

“I am grateful to have such an amazing wife, family and support system to lean on during this time.”

The charges are all misdemeanors, punishable by up to 90 days in jail, or gross misdemeanors, punishable by up to one year.

Under the terms of his release, Sherman may not possess a weapon, use alcohol or nonprescription drugs, or have any contact with his father-in-law.

Sherman, unsigned for the upcoming NFL season, is a vice president on the NFL Player Association’s executive committee and spent the past two seasons with the San Francisco 49ers.

His first seven seasons were spent with the Seattle Seahawks, with whom he made two Super Bowl appearances, winning in 2014.

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Former Oklahoma City Thunder employee turned in by coworkers pleads guilty in US Capitol riot

Danielle Doyle, 37, pleaded guilty to illegally demonstrating inside the US Capitol on January 6 and agreed to pay $ 500 in restitution for damage done to the building during the riot. Prosecutors have cut the same deal for other defendants that face similar allegations to Doyle, who was not violent or destructive inside the building.
Doyle’s plea comes in a flurry of deals involving defendants that face lesser charges, with two more defendants scheduled to plead guilty later this week.
The charges have a potential maximum of six month in jail, though it is likely Doyle will be ordered to serve much less, or even no jail time, when she is sentenced in October. Only two rioters have been sentenced so far, one of whom received jail time.
Federal prosecutors identified Doyle after two of her former coworkers at the Oklahoma City Thunder, Oklahoma’s NBA team, reported her to the FBI after they noticed her in CNN video of the riot. Employees for the team had circulated a video of the clip, which showed Doyle inside the Capitol, according to a filing supporting her arrest.
A review of Doyle’s LinkedIn profile shows that she worked for the team from 2010 to 2020 in ticket sales, and the organization confirmed to CNN in March that she had resigned in December 2020 to take a position elsewhere.
Investigators also found surveillance footage allegedly showing Doyle climbing through a broken window and walking down a staircase and through a hallway in the overrun Capitol building.
Fifteen other rioters have pleaded guilty so far in the massive federal investigation, according to CNN’s reporting.

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Top Biden ally pleads with him to scrap filibuster for election reform

After months of setbacks and gridlock on voting rights, one of President Joe Biden’s top allies in Congress is calling for him to support amending the Senate filibuster.

House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) told POLITICO Biden “should endorse” the idea of creating a carveout to the legislative filibuster in the Senate for legislation that applies to the Constitution. In effect, the reform would make it possible for Democrats to pass their sweeping elections reform bill and another bill reauthorizing key sections of the 1965 Voting Rights Act with just Democratic support.

It’s a sentiment the congressman says he’s shared with White House counselor Steve Ricchetti and Office of Public Engagement Director Cedric Richmond as well. “I’ve even told that to the vice president,” Clyburn said.

Biden could “pick up the phone and tell [Sen.] Joe Manchin, ‘Hey, we should do a carve out.’” Clyburn said, referring to the centrist West Virginia Democrat who has resisted filibuster reform. “I don’t care whether he does it in a microphone or on the telephone — just do it.”

Clyburn’s comments are the latest attempt by senior Democrats to find a way around Republican opposition to their election reform legislation. Biden himself is set to embark on a more aggressive campaign to try and move public opinion behind those bills. He is headed to Philadelphia on Tuesday to deliver a speech on his administration’s “actions to protect the sacred, constitutional right to vote,” the White House said. His remarks will come days after the president met with the leaders of national civil rights organizations at the White House, who called on Biden to use his voice, influence and power in this moment.

But the president’s ability to directly combat restrictive voting laws being considered or passed by Republican-led states across the country is limited. His party runs an evenly split, 50-50, Senate, and enjoys a slim House majority. Biden himself has so far expressed little desire to change the legislative filibuster to the degree likely needed to pass more of his agenda. Adding to the hurdles are recent Supreme Court rulings that weakened the Justice Department’s ability to sue states for election laws deemed racially discriminatory.

If the two voting rights bills before Congress don’t reach Biden’s desk soon, Clyburn said, “Democrats can kiss the majority goodbye.”

“I can see in a state like Georgia — where people stepped up in January in a way nobody thought they ever would — I can see the disappointment in the voters to the extent that [Sen. Rafael] Warnock would not be back,” he added.

In response to Clyburn’s comments, a White House official noted Biden’s respect and admiration for the congressman and the president’s support for a talking filibuster, which requires a senator or group of senators to physically be on the floor to stall a bill. But Biden has notably dodged questions about whether he believes it should take 60 votes to filibuster legislation or not.

Anxiety and frustration around the failure to move voting rights legislation are not just building among progressive activists but among civil rights advocates and Democratic lawmakers as well. Democrats who spoke to POLITICO said they believed failure on this front would result not only in electoral losses but would have a tangible impact on the country’s democracy if more Republican-led states pass restrictions on voting access.

Adding to that frustration is the recent Supreme Court decision that delivered another major blow to the Voting Rights Act. Lawyers and civil rights advocates believe the decision will make it harder to bring lawsuits against new election laws passed by Republican-led states that limit access to the ballot.

“I hope that the president gets a little more aggressive,” said Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky.), who could lose his seat if Republicans decide to gerrymander the districts in Kentucky during redistricting. “Obviously they have a very full plate and they’re trying to deal with a lot of things [but] there are many of us who believe that particularly after the Supreme Court decision that we really are at a critical juncture in terms of protecting Democracy.”

Yarmuth added that Democrats have a “deep fear” about “what happens to our democracy period. Not who wins in 2022, what happens to democracy.”

Democrats’ signature election reform bill would expand early voting, ban partisan gerrymandering, among other changes that touch nearly every aspect of the election system. The second bill, named after the late Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) would restore key sections of the 1965 landmark Voting Rights Act, which mandated jurisdictions with a history of racial discrimination get pre-approval for election law changes from the federal government.

“We have to have a federal legislative fix and we have to figure out politically how we get around the filibuster,” said Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.), vice-chair of the House Judiciary Committee. In Dean’s home state of Pennsylvania Republican state legislators are now calling for an Arizona-style audit of the 2020 election results.

Dean also said she hopes Biden will endorse a carveout to the filibuster for bills related to election reform.

“I hope the President will do that — as I said I think the filibuster should be removed unless it was actually used for debate that furthers conversation about things,” said Dean. “But I hope the president will lead on this.”

A White House official said Biden is actively pushing for the two pieces of legislation and has deployed multiple agencies, the White House legislative team, and senior staff to lobby for passage. On Thursday, Vice President Kamala Harris announced the Democratic National Committee would invest $ 25 million to register, educate and turn out voters.

On Friday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki cited the Justice Department’s recent action to increase funding and personnel for its Civil Rights Division and Biden’s decision to nominate “two civil rights activists” to prominent roles at the DOJ as evidence of the administration’s dedication to the issue.

Psaki said Biden’s speech in Philadelphia on Tuesday will not be about the legislative process but a “moral obligation” to defend the right to vote.

But to many Democrats on and off the Hill, the entire ballgame is the legislative process.

“If he is serious about voting rights being passed, then he has got to support at least modifying the filibuster,” said Cliff Allbright, co-founder of Black Voters Matter, a group that helped mobilize voters in Georgia and across the southern states in 2020. “If he’s not willing to support that … he just needs to not tweet anymore about voting rights — just shut up.”

There are only two ways Democrats get the voting bills passed, said Rep. Clyburn: Either Manchin finds 10 Republicans to support a revised elections bill and the Lewis bill, or Democrats get rid of the filibuster.

Clyburn said he held a one-on-one meeting with Manchin and their staff around the time that Manchin was crafting changes to Democrats’ election reform bill. Clyburn told him “I’m not asking you to eliminate the filibuster. … But what I’m saying to you is that nobody ought to have the right to filibuster my constitutional rights.”

In the absence of an embrace of filibuster reform, Democrats said they hoped to see more hardball legislative tactics and political arm-twisting by Biden to move the election bills forward.

“This is an existential crisis for democracy and the party that is defending democracy,” said Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

“When you read Robert Caro’s biography of LBJ, you see how the Voting Rights Act of 1965 would not have passed without his direct personal muscular intervention with particular recalcitrant Democratic senators,” Raskin said. “That is the historical template for getting this thing done. And as a longtime senator, and student of the Senate, I am sure that this analogy is in Joe Biden’s mind.”

Author: Laura Barrón-López
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Ex-officer pleads guilty to manslaughter as family blasts deal

The mother of a Black man fatally shot in the United States by a white former Nashville officer sobbed, screamed and knocked over a court lectern on Friday as she begged a judge not to accept a plea deal she says was struck in secret without her knowledge, a chaotic scene that briefly delayed a hearing.

Former officer Andrew Delke pleaded guilty to manslaughter and will serve a three-year prison sentence in the death of Daniel Hambrick, 25, in 2018 as part of an agreement with prosecutors.

As part of the agreement, Delke agreed not to pursue parole or appeal the case. However, Delke’s defence team said he will likely serve a year and a half in jail with standard credits.

Prosecuting police officers in the US is difficult because courts and juries tend to side with police. That may be changing. Prompted by widespread Black Lives Matter protests after the death of George Floyd in 2020, the US Congress is debating police reform proposals.

The hearing turned volatile as Hambrick’s mother, Vickie, gave a lengthy statement as family members and others applauded. Other supporters, outside the court in the hallway, banged on the door in support. Delke’s family sat on the other side of the courtroom with security guards.

“I hate you,” Vickie Hambrick screamed over and over again, while also yelling out profanities, directing some at Delke and prosecutors.

Andrew Delke listens to victim impact statements from the family of Daniel Hambrick as he pleads guilty to manslaughter as part of an agreement with prosecutors in Hambrick’s death in 2018 [Josie Norris/The Tennessean via AP]

In a chaotic moment, the mother knocked over the lectern and a computer monitor, and family members rushed to her side. Delke and Judge Monte Watkins were briefly ushered out of the court.

Delke, 27, was about to face trial for a first-degree murder charge, but his lawyer announced he had would plead guilty to a reduced charge of voluntary manslaughter.

“I hope this case can contribute positively about the much-needed discussion about how police officers are trained and how we as a community want police officers to interact with citizens,” Delke said shortly after entering his plea.

His voice cracking at times, Delke apologised, saying he was “deeply sorry for the harm my actions caused”.

A group of roughly two dozen protesters gathered outside the court, chanting “no racist police” to show their opposition to Delke’s plea deal. Others wore shirts noting that police officers and white people receive lighter penalties for committing the same crimes as Black and brown people.

Hambrick’s family said they were not contacted or consulted and did not know about the plea deal until after it was done.

“I have contempt for this system. I have contempt for this plea. I have contempt for the [Fraternal Order of Police]. And I have a special contempt for Andrew Delke. May you all rot in hell,” said lawyer Joy Kimbrough, who read the statement of Vickie Hambrick as she wept behind her.

District Attorney Glenn Funk told reporters afterwards that he informed Hambrick’s family lawyer of the deal on Wednesday and spoke to Vickie Hambrick on Thursday. He said he has been in contact with them for three years, and knew Vickie Hambrick wanted Delke to be convicted of murder and sentenced to prison for life.

Vickie Hambrick enters the court where Andrew Delke pleaded guilty to manslaughter for killing her son Daniel Hambrick in Nashville, Tennessee [Josie Norris/The Tennessean via AP]

In accepting the plea agreement, Funk said he made the decision in the best interest of the state of Tennessee. There was a “very large percentage” chance that the case would have ended in a hung jury, Funk said, which he said would have meant the emotion seen in the court on Friday “would have been played out one-hundred-fold”.

Funk called it “significant progress” that “tonight will be the first night Nashville has had a police officer in jail for shooting a Black man on duty”.

Prosecutors focused on surveillance footage that captured the shooting, in which Delke stops chasing and shoots the fleeing man.

Nashville’s Metro Council has approved a $ 2.25m settlement to resolve a civil lawsuit by Hambrick’s family.

For Vickie Hambrick, who is legally blind, the loss of her only child will forever haunt her.

“My son was my eyes,” Kimbrough said, reading Vickie Hambrick’s statement. “Since he’s been gone, things have not been the same and they never will be.”

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Pearland librarian's legacy lives on as husband pleads guilty to her murder

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — More than two years after a former Houston Police Sergeant shot and killed his wife, he’s plead guilty to murder and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

It’s justice for a family still coping with unimaginable loss.

Belinda Hernandez was a school librarian, an educator, and a life-long learner.

In March 2019, her husband, Hilario Hernandez, who was an HPD sergeant for more than 30 years at the time, shot and killed her. He took off and was later arrested not far from the Texas-Mexico border, leaving the couple’s adult children to grieve.

READ ALSO: Husband shot wife over what he perceived was her flirting with another man, court documents say

Christina Foos is their daughter. On Friday, she faced her father, who she now calls Larry, in court.

As her father prepares to begin his sentence, Foos is following in her mother’s footsteps as an educator for Pearland ISD.

“It’s definitely been a long two years,” she said. “A devastating situation for my brother and myself. Essentially, that day, we lost both our parents. Mainly, what I made the focus about was her and her legacy. I made that known in the speech that it is no longer about him and it’s completely about her.”

READ ALSO: Pearland Little League’s decal honors school librarian

Foos is grateful this chapter is closed. Her mother’s memory is a constant reminder of how to live a good life.

“We miss her every day. She is just simply irreplaceable,” Foos said.

Belinda’s legacy lives on at two Pearland ISD campuses, one at which she was the librarian and another at which she taught reading.

There are free libraries filled with donated books, all dedicated in her memory.

Sonia Serrano first hired Belinda more than 20 years ago and mentored her as the mother of two went back to school to become a teacher. She then earned her master’s degree so she could become a librarian and share her love of reading.

READ ALSO: Family friend remembers slain Pearland ISD librarian and HPD sergeant accused in her death

“She had a passion for education,” Serrano said. “She was a life-long learner. She loved books. She loved providing instructions to students no matter what her role was. She took every opportunity available to teach kids life lessons. “

Michelle Kiefer, the principal at Shadycrest Elementary, said she misses Belinda’s spirit, but thinks of her when she walks into the library or when she sees the mural she painted or when she passes the little library built in her honor.

“We just couldn’t be more proud of Belinda Hernandez and the legacy she has created, not only for her kids and her family, but for Pearland ISD and the whole Pearland community,” said Kiefer.

In addition, those libraries mean everything to her children.

“We’re so honored and feel very blessed that she continues to live on in our community,” said Foos.

For the latest on this case, follow ABC13 reporter Tom Abrahams on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.

Author: Tom Abrahams

This post originally appeared on ABC13 RSS Feed

Third man pleads guilty in son's murder-for-hire plot to kill his father

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A third man has plead guilty to the 2018 murder of Austin jeweler Ted Shaughnessy.

Johnny Leon was originally charged with capital murder, but received a 35-year prison sentence Wednesday for the lesser charge of murder.

Last week, Arieon Smith and Ted’s son, Nicolas Shaughnessy also pleaded guilty to murder for a 35 year sentence. Both of them had also originally been charged with capital murder.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Man and hitman he hired to kill his father plead guilty to murder, both sentenced to 35 years in prison

Nicolas hired Leon and Smith as hitmen to kill his father. Investigators say Nicolas and his wife, Jaclyn Edison, plotted to have both Ted and Nicolas’ mother, Corey Shaughnessy murdered so that they would get an inheritance.

Edison is is also charged in connection to Ted’s murder. She’s accused of solicitation to commit capital murder. She bonded out of jail shortly after her arrest in 2018. Her next court hearing is set for June.

Ted owned Gallerie Jewelers in Austin at the time. Nicolas was the sole beneficiary of $ 2 million in the event of his parents’ death, according to a search warrant.

Search warrants at the time of the murder said Nicolas, then 19 and living in College Station, was having financial troubles and owed his mother $ 30,000.

Johnny Leon
Johnny Leon (APD photo)

While Corey dodged bullets shot in their home, investigators say Ted was found with multiple gunshot wounds.

At the time, Corey stood by her soon and daughter-in-law. However, after Leon’s sentencing, an allocution statement written by the mother and widow was read by a victim witness counselor, explaining that she supports her son’s sentencing.

“Two of these people were strangers to me. But the other two, my son and my daughter-in-law, I loved. Not me, my husband, or anyone in our family or any of our friends could have ever imagined that Nicolas and Jackie would want to have us murdered. It was truly inconceivable. And because of that, I held on to the tiniest string of hope that maybe it wasn’t true.”

She went on to describe how close the pair was to her, even after the murder-for-hire plot, “Nicolas and Jackie were with me when I went back to the house late in the afternoon on the day of Ted’s murder. They saw the pool of Ted’s blood where he had laid as he died– the broken glass, splintered wood, and bullet holes. They went with me to pick up his ashes. They lived with me in our home, mine and Ted’s. They ate the food that I bought and cooked for them. They wore the clothes and the shoes that I bought for them. They planned their future of profiting from the business that Ted and I had built for over 20 years. They took everything I had to give after failing to take my life.”

Corey’s statement went on to say that many facts of the case were withheld from her for the past couple of years, and that the string of hope she had was finally broken, as she now feels all four involved in the case deserve punishment.

However, she noted that she asked District Attorney José Garza for some leniency in their sentencing.

“Something went terribly, terribly wrong in the minds of these four young adults. And I thank the District Attorney for considering punishments that while severe will allow the possibility for them to have a future. Only God can forgive them, but Ted is dead, and he deserves justice.”

Garza says like Nicolas and Smith, Leon won’t be eligible for parole for almost 20 years.

Jacqulyn Powell
This article originally appeared on KXAN Austin

'Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' star pleads not guilty to fraud charges

NEW YORK — A Utah woman with a starring role in “The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City” pleaded not guilty Friday to charges accusing her of ripping off hundreds of people in a nationwide telemarketing scheme.A federal judge in New York City also imposed tighter bail conditions for Jennifer Shah during a virtual hearing after a prosecutor suggested she was still hiding illicit proceeds from the alleged fraud and is a flight risk. Agents searching her home found debit cards from the account of a shell company formed as part of the scheme, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Kiersten Fletcher.

“She’s not demonstrated a willingness to disclose her assets,” Fletcher said.Shah will remain free under an order to post a $ 1 million bond secured by $ 250,000 in cash or property and co-signed by two other people. Her lawyers had called the requirement to put up property excessive because she’s too famous and eager to fight the charges to try to slip away.

At a previous hearing, Shah and a co-defendant, Stuart Smith, were released only on conditions barring contact with each other, traveling outside of Utah or engaging in telemarketing. Smith, who has appeared as Shah’s assistant on the show, also pleaded not guilty on Friday.

Shah, 47, of Park City, Utah, is a high-profile member of the main cast of the Bravo program. She was often at the center of the show’s most dramatic moments and threw a glass during an argument with one of her fellow cast members. She is married to University of Utah assistant football coach Sharrieff Shah.

She drew new attention earlier this week after authorities accused her and Smith of ripping off hundreds of people by offering fraud tax and other services in a scheme running from 2012 to 2021, prosecutors said in an indictment. Many of the victims were over 55 and didn’t own computers, they said.

Shah and Smith’s original arraignment was disrupted on Wednesday after Shah was unable to connect to the virtual hearing due to technical difficulties.Shah and Smith tried to hide their role in the fraud by using third-party names for their business entities, telling victims to use encrypted messages to communicate with them and instructing people to send some payments to offshore bank accounts, the indictment said.

The pair “generated and sold ‘lead lists’ of innocent individuals for other members of their scheme to repeatedly scam,” prosecutors said. “In actual reality and as alleged, the so-called business opportunities pushed on the victims by Shah, Smith and their co-conspirators were just fraudulent schemes, motivated by greed, to steal victims’ money.”

A trial date was set for Oct. 18 in Manhattan.

Copyright © 2021 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

AP

Dan Walker pleads with BBC viewers 'don't shout at us' over Harry and Meghan interview

Ahead of this morning, Dan Walker, 43, prepared himself for a busy day covering the top news topics, ranging from the latest on the coronavirus pandemic to the highly-anticipated Meghan and Harry interview with Oprah Winfrey, which aired over-night in the US. Fully aware of the negative responses the show will get, Dan sent out a warning the night before to viewers, telling them “not to shout at them” for covering such a talked about event.
Taking to Twitter, he shared the official BBC Breakfast account’s post teasing what’s in store for this morning.

“Busy programme tomorrow,” he penned.

“Here’s a plan… if you’re not interested in #HarryandMeghanonOprah that’s fine… but don’t shout at us for covering it. See you in the morning.”

It didn’t take long before he was hit with criticism from disgruntled viewers who believed it wasn’t “newsworthy” when there are bigger things going on in the world.

READ MORE: Meghan and Harry avoided ‘ban’ on interviews endured by Edward VIII

Piers has been very open about his distain for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and recently responded to an emotional statement from Suits actor Patrick J Adams, who played Meghan’s on-screen husband in the legal drama.

He came to her defence in a Twitter statement praising her over her navigation of a what he perceives as an “archaic and toxic” family dynamic.

“From day one she was an enthusiastic, kind, cooperative, giving, joyful and supportive member of our television family,” he wrote.

He continued: “She fell in love, moved to a new country, became a household name across the entire globe and began the difficult work of trying to find her place in a family dynamic that can at best be described as complicated and at worst, seemingly archaic and toxic.”

But the Good Morning Britain star responded to his series of tweets where he defended their joint interview with Oprah, saying: “Actually, what’s ‘OBSCENE’ is your friend trashing her husband’s family on global TV as the Queen’s 99-year-old husband lies in hospital.