Towanda A. Shields, 47, seems to lack an understanding of the odds in a standard lottery but found a way to dramatically increase her odds of securing free long-term housing. Shields was arrested for allegedly threatening to kill state lottery officials in an outburst of frustration with her lack of success.
While the criminal acts are clear on the horrific videotapes showing the torture of disabled man in Chicago, the response to the videotape has been more unexpected. That includes the bizarre spin given initially by a ranking police officer that the torture could just been the type of “stupid decisions” made by “young adults.” CNN host Don Lemon is under fire for his response to the horrific videotapes from Chicago of a white disabled man being tortured by four black assailants. After a guest says quite understandably that the torture of the disabled man was “evil,” Lemon insists that it was not necessarily “evil” as opposed to “bad home training.” Millions of people were legitimately confused how torturing a disabled man, forcing him to drink from a toilet, and betraying his friendship with a former school mate could in any universe be just “bad home training.”
Chicago police are finally calling the horrific crimes committed against a white disabled man in Chicago a hate crime and released the names of the alleged culprits. They are Jordan Hill, 18, Tesfaye Cooper, 18, Brittany Covington, 18, and Tanishia Covington, 24 and faced hate crime and aggravated battery charges after torturing the man while shouting things like “F–k white people” and “F–k Trump.” In addition to cutting and beating the 18-year-old mentally disabled man, the suspects forced him to drink from a toilet. They are looking at sentences that could reach 50 years in jail if convicted.
Two men and two women have been arrested after the filming of a young white man being tortured as what appears to be black assailants shout “f–k white people” and “F–k Donald Trump.” While the assailants appear African American as well as the woman filming the disgusting video for Facebook, the police refused to release the race of the arrested individuals or say whether this appears to be a hate crime. There has also been no statement from the Justice Department or agents dispatched to the Chicago to open a duel federal investigation as was the case in racially charged crimes in places like Ferguson, Missouri. The response from the local commander in Chicago is particularly curious. [UPDATE: A second video has surfaced showing the man forced to drink from a toilet.]
The decline of free speech around the world is accelerating at such a rate that it can produce truly disorienting effects. Take the latest lawsuit by the Turkish Chess Federation (TSF). Chess players were the target of an Islamic extremist televangelist who told Muslims that playing chess is more sinful than gambling. It was yet another absurd declaration from a religious fanatic that should be answered with mocking disbelief. Instead, TSF moved from being a victim to being a violator with a lawsuit against Ahmet Mahmut Ünlü, popularly known as “Cübbeli Ahmet Hoca” (Robbed Ahmet Hoca). The group reportedly began “legal proceedings” over the comments, which should be protected as an exercise of free speech.
As a torts professor, I admit to ranking new products by their likely litigious profiles. Amazon’s Alexa is a particular favorite. First there are the privacy concerns over the security of data on the devices. Then there was the constitutional criminal procedure concerns in a murder case in Arkansas. Alexa is an example of new technology potentially outstripping existing legal doctrines. The company is certainly making good on its final pledge of its slogan: “Work hard, have fun, make history”