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‘I saw hate in his eyes’: White security guard pulls gun on black police officer
Wed, 17 Jul 2019 04:52:26 -0400

‘I saw hate in his eyes’: White security guard pulls gun on black police officerSheriff’s deputy Alan Gaston thought they were on the same side.One man, Mr Gaston, was a high-ranking officer in the Lucas County, Ohio, sheriff’s department with 34 years of experience.The other was a security guard contracted to protect an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) office in Toledo.But then the guard pulled his gun. He raised his voice. He put a hand on Mr Gaston’s arm and rested his finger on the trigger.In a matter of seconds, what began with a routine errand at the IRS escalated into a frightening standoff between a white security guard and a black police officer, who said he heard hate in the guard’s shouts and believed he would be shot.“You don’t expect to be ambushed by someone who you think is on the same team,” Mr Gaston told The Washington Post.“I feel there was definitely some racial overtones involved. And I’m not the type of person to throw the race card, I’m just telling you the facts. I looked in his eyes and I saw hate in his eyes.”He had stopped by the IRS office during his shift on 31 May to ask a question about a letter the agency sent him.He was in full uniform, his badge and his firearm in clear view.The security guard, identified in court documents as Seth Eklund, asked Mr Gaston to leave his gun in his patrol car.When Mr Gaston replied he couldn’t do that, he said Mr Eklund became hostile. Mr Eklund accused Mr Gaston of reaching for his weapon, shouting “get your hands off your gun”, even though Mr Gaston said his hands were visible and nowhere near his holster.Mr Gaston, who has years of experience teaching defensive tactics, decided it was time for him to leave.He recalled a wide-eyed elderly couple in the office waiting room watching the exchange, and he said he feared for the bystanders’ safety. Mr Gaston turned to go.As he walked out of the cramped office, Mr Eklund drew his gun, trained it on Mr Gaston’s back and followed him. At one point, Mr Gaston said, Mr Eklund tried to arrest the uniformed officer.“He came around the corner with his weapon out, telling me, ‘you had your chance, you’re not going anywhere, I’m detaining you’,” Gaston said.“That’s when I was preparing myself to be shot. The hate and anger he had against me, I was getting ready to be shot by this security guard for no reason.”Mr Eklund, who could not be reached for comment, pleaded not guilty to one charge of aggravated menacing in a court appearance on Monday.Mr Gaston and his wife have also filed a lawsuit against Mr Eklund and the two security firms that apparently employed him.Representatives of those companies, Paragon Systems and Praetorian Shield, did not respond to requests for comment. The IRS declined to comment.The local news station WTVG published what it claims to be security camera footage of the interaction and The Washington Post obtained screenshots of the video.The images show Mr Gaston backing away and attempting to leave the building in an elevator. But Mr Eklund, gun still drawn, blocks the door with his foot.Mr Gaston says he felt cornered, scared. He took out his phone to take a picture of Mr Eklund, he said, and the security guard finally holstered his weapon.Heather Taylor, president of the Ethical Society of Police in St Louis, said that Mr Eklund behaved recklessly and likely would not have treated a white officer the same way.“We know what it’s like being an African American police officer in a city,” Ms Taylor said. “A lot of us realise that, hey, even though you’re in uniform, that doesn’t mean you’re safe.”The tense scene recalled other, infamous incidents with grisly endings. Ms Taylor pointed to the case of Jemel Roberson, a black security guard who was killed by a Midlothian, Illinois, police officer while they both responded to a shooting at the bar where Roberson worked.She also mentioned Detective Jacai Colson in Maryland, who was killed by a fellow officer while working undercover. Mr Colson, according to a lawsuit, had his badge in his hand and was shouting “Police! Police!” before he was killed.“You’re not given the benefit of the doubt as a minority,” Ms Taylor said. “It’s something we’ve been highlighting forever and now here’s another example of it.”She applauded Mr Gaston’s cool demeanour in the face of what she said was potentially lethal bigotry.Mr Gaston said he didn’t feel that Mr Eklund respected him as a law enforcement officer, and in more than three decades of police work has never dealt with anything like that.He was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and severe depression, he said. He’s been on medical leave and is seeing a counsellor twice a week. The civil suit Mr Gaston and his wife filed seeks compensation.The standoff between Mr Gaston and Mr Eklund ended, he said, when Toledo police officers responded to a 911 call from inside the building that mentioned a man who has “got a gun” and “won’t leave”. The caller didn’t mention that the man was a police officer.When Toledo police arrived, Mr Gaston recounted, they told Mr Eklund: “You know he’s a uniformed deputy sheriff, right? We can go anywhere in this building we want.”Washington Post


Israeli NGO seeks sale of seized Iranian tanker over attack
Tue, 16 Jul 2019 11:34:12 -0400

Israeli NGO seeks sale of seized Iranian tanker over attackAn Israeli NGO petitioned Gibraltar's top court Tuesday to sell an impounded Iranian oil tanker to compensate parents of a child allegedly killed by Iran-backed Hamas. Shurat Hadin, which wages legal battles worldwide against what it calls "Israel's enemies", says it won a $178.5 million US court judgement against Iran and Syria in 2017 over the death of an American infant killed in an attack in Jerusalem. The Iranian tanker Grace I, capable of carrying two million barrels of oil, was seized on July 4 by police and customs officers in Gibraltar -- a British overseas territory on Spain's southern tip -- with the aid of a detachment of British Royal Marines.


Biden says if Trump mocks his age or mental state in a debate he'd challenge him to a push-up contest
Tue, 16 Jul 2019 10:09:33 -0400

Biden says if Trump mocks his age or mental state in a debate he'd challenge him to a push-up contest"I know it will be an ugly campaign. I know it will be not an honorable campaign that he'll run, but I'm not backing down at all from him," Biden said.


Prehistoric city offers glimpse of ancient living near Jerusalem
Tue, 16 Jul 2019 08:02:47 -0400

Prehistoric city offers glimpse of ancient living near JerusalemThe 9,000-year-old metropolis, uncovered during a survey before the construction of a new highway, is one of the biggest ever found, the Israel Antiquities Authority said on Tuesday. It covered dozens of acres near what is today the town of Motza, some five km (three miles) west of Jerusalem. "This is most probably the largest excavation of this time period in the Middle East, which will allow the research to advance leaps and bounds ahead of where we are today, just by the amount of material that we are able to save and preserve from this site," Lauren Davis, an archaeologist with Israel's antiquities authority, told Reuters.


Michael Flynn’s Ex-Business Partner Points the Finger at Him in Court
Mon, 15 Jul 2019 20:07:24 -0400

Michael Flynn’s Ex-Business Partner Points the Finger at Him in CourtPhoto Illustration by Lyne Lucien/The Daily Beast/GettyIf there is a question of who worked on behalf of the Turkish government to influence the 2016 Donald Trump campaign, then the court should look no further than former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, lawyers for Bijan Kian, the Iranian-American businessman and former Flynn partner, told jurors in the Eastern District of Virginia Monday. Kian is charged with two felonies—illegally lobbying on behalf of the Turkish government and conspiring covertly to influence U.S. politics about Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric who is now living in Pennsylvania. He faces a maximum of 15 years in prison if convicted. But Kian’s team of attorneys said in their opening statements Monday that their client “did not conspire with anyone” to work on behalf of the Turkish government in the U.S. When questioning the Turkish government’s influence operations in the U.S., the jury should look at the newly announced cache of evidence the government has on Flynn, said attorney Bob Trout. Kian isn’t referenced in any of it, Trout said. Michael Flynn Putting Mueller Deal at Risk in ‘Dangerous’ New TrialIn the opening statements Monday the Kian legal team spent the majority of their time arguing that their client did not work on behalf of the Turkish government when he attempted to influence public opinion in the U.S. about Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen. Gulen currently lives in Pennsylvania and is wanted by the Turkish government for allegedly planning a military coup in the country in 2016. Kian instead worked on behalf of a Turkish-Dutch businessman named Ekim Alptekin, Trout said. (Alptekin is named as a defendant in the Kian case but will likely avoid appearance because he is living in Istanbul.) Toward the end of his statements, Trout tried to create a degree of separation between Kian and Flynn who is currently awaiting sentencing in Washington for crimes carried out during his time working with the Trump team. He pointed to the government’s evidence, which was mentioned in a hearing last week, and said that prosecutors had all but conceded that Kian was not involved. The jurors have not seen the evidence yet and the details of what the government currently has in its position is unclear.According to a government indictment filed last year, Flynn and Kian worked together throughout the fall of 2016, when Flynn was an advisor to then candidate Trump, on a project to try and extradite Gulen back to Turkey. Prosecutors said the two took hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Turkish government to execute the plan. Flynn was also at the time accused of lying about his communications with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak. He entered into a cooperation deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller and admitted to lying about the communications and about his consulting firm’s business with the Turkish government. He said that the registration he filed for the Turkey-focused project in 2017 contained several inaccuracies, though his lawyers maintain that Flynn did not intentionally lie on the documents. As part of his deal with the government, Flynn was supposed to testify against Kian and his sentencing in Washington was postponed so he could appear as a witness in Virginia.That all changed last week when the government removed Flynn from the witness list and instead named him as a co-conspirator in the case. The government also said it had extensive information that the Turkish government attempted to influence the Trump campaign through Flynn. It was the first mention of an additional set of materials that show how Flynn was being extensively involved in the Turkish lobbying.It’s that evidence that lies at the heart of who really committed the crime of illegally lobbying for Turkey, Kian’s lawyers said Monday. Kian “didn’t know” about the alleged separate communications between Alptekin and Flynn that are in the government’s possession, Trout said.For its part, the government in its opening statement barely mentioned the former national security adviser, instead referring several times to Kian’s business team members as “associates.” The government focused on Kian’s email correspondences, including with Flynn, about the Gulen project and attempted to lay out for the jury how the money that flowed into Kian’s account for services rendered connected back to the Turkish government.After nearly an hour and a half of opening statements, both of which were at times tangled and difficult to follow, the jury seemed to fade by 5:30 p.m. Several individuals closed their eyes and appeared to be sleeping.They’re due back in court Tuesday morning for testimony, including evidence to be entered into the record and for witness examinations.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. 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Serial killer linked to Arkansas woman's 1994 slaying
Mon, 15 Jul 2019 14:52:19 -0400

Serial killer linked to Arkansas woman's 1994 slayingAuthorities are investigating whether possibly the most prolific serial killer in U.S. history is behind the death of an Arkansas woman in 1994. Police in Pine Bluff are reviewing the case of Jolanda Jones's death after Samuel Little confessed to her killing, which had been determined to be drug-related. According to a police memo, when Little was in custody in Dallas, Texas, in October 2018, he indicated that he killed Jones, the Pine Bluff Commercial reported .


An Air Force Pilot Tells Us What Flying a B-2 Stealth Bomber Is Like
Tue, 16 Jul 2019 03:02:00 -0400

An Air Force Pilot Tells Us What Flying a B-2 Stealth Bomber Is Like(Washington, D.C.) When B-2 stealth bombers attacked Serbia on the opening night of Operation Allied Force in 1999, destroyed Iraqi air defenses during 2003’s “Shock and Awe” and eliminated the Libyan fighter force in 2011 -- the attacks were all guided by highly-specialized pilots trained in stealth attack tactics.Given the dangers of these kinds of missions, such as flying into heavy enemy ground fire from air defenses, confronting the prospect of air attacks and preparing for electronic warfare over hostile territory, B-2 pilots need to be ready.“We prepare and train every single day in case we get called up tomorrow,” Lt. Col. Nicola Polidor, Commander of Detachment 5 of the 29th Training Systems Squadron, told Warrior in an interview.While performing missions, B-2 pilots need to maintain the correct flight path, align with specific targeting intelligence and load and prepare weapons, all while manning a digital cockpit to control a wide range of additional variables at one time. Polidor, who trains future B-2 pilots at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, says Air Force pilot trainees have adjusted well to learning a seemingly overwhelming amount of new information.“The biggest challenge for pilots is being able to manage flying for long periods of time at the same time as managing a communications suite and robust weapons package,” Polidor said.Polidor is only the 10th female B-2 pilot in history.Training is broken down into an academic phase and a flight phase, with classroom training as the first step. Trainees, Polidor explained, typically spend about two months working on a simulator, before taking their first flight.


A NASA official says the explosion of SpaceX's ship during a test 'was a huge gift' for making the vehicle safe to fly
Mon, 15 Jul 2019 20:02:00 -0400

A NASA official says the explosion of SpaceX's ship during a test 'was a huge gift' for making the vehicle safe to flyA lead SpaceX engineer said an anomaly that destroyed its Crew Dragon capsule, designed to fly NASA astronauts, was caused by a small valve.


Speaker Pelosi accused of violating House decorum
Tue, 16 Jul 2019 18:18:45 -0400

Speaker Pelosi accused of violating House decorumHouse Majority Leader Steny Hoyer ruled Nancy Pelosi broke House rules when delivering remarks introducing the resolution condemning the president's remarks; Mark Meredith reports from Capitol Hill.


Italy seizes 'combat-ready' missile and automatic weapon stash in raids on far-Right figures
Mon, 15 Jul 2019 16:08:16 -0400

Italy seizes 'combat-ready' missile and automatic weapon stash in raids on far-Right figuresItalian police have seized a large arsenal of weapons, including an air-to-air missile, in raids on neo-Nazi sympathisers, they said on Monday. Elite police forces searched properties across northern Italy following an investigation into Italians who had fought alongside Russian-backed separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, a police statement said. Three men were arrested, including a customs officer who has previously stood for parliament for an extreme right party. During their raids, police discovered a French-made Matra air-to-air missile that appeared to have once belonged to the Qatar armed forces. Subsequent checks showed the weapon was in working condition but lacked an explosive charge. A big cache of guns and ammunition was seized by the Turin special police force Credit: FRANCESCO AMMENDOLA,HO/AFP/Getty Images Police said the suspects had tried to sell the missile in conversations with contacts on the WhatsApp messaging network. Among other weapons uncovered were 26 guns, 20 bayonets, 306 gun parts, including silencers and rifle scopes, and more than 800 bullets of various calibres. The arms were primarily from Austria, Germany and the United States. Police also seized Nazi memorabilia from the properties. "The police investigation ... came into being because of the activities of some Italian fighters with extremist backgrounds who had taken part in the armed conflict in the Ukrainian region of Donbass," the police statement said. More than 10,000 people have been killed since 2014 in fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces in eastern Ukraine.



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