When NYPD officer Michael Birch was summoned into a performance evaluation meeting with his commanding officer and a lieutenant one day in August 2012, he was expecting to hear more of what he’d heard in the past about the way he did his job: that he wasn’t generating enough “activity.” As an officer in the transit bureau, he says, that meant being told to issue more summonses for fare evasion, and arresting more people for stealing fellow straphangers’ cell phones.
On Tuesday, a judge found Sarah Ferguson not guilty of second-degree murder, but guilty of first-degree manslaughter, first-degree assault, and first-degree gang assault for her role in a mass beating that left her 19-year-old half-brother Lucas Leonard dead and her 17-year-old half-brother Christopher Leonard severely injured.
The father of two boys beaten and whipped in a group counseling session last year testified on Wednesday that his sons were attacked by members of their church because they had been suspected of sexually molesting their sister and their half-sister’s children. “Blows that hurt drive off evil,” Bruce Leonard told the court, by way of explanation.
The murder trial of Sarah Ferguson began in Utica, New York, last week. Ferguson is accused of participating in a group counseling session at the Word of Life Church that left her 19-year-old half-brother Lucas Leonard dead and her other half-brother, Christopher, mutilated. Prosecutors said the beatings began when Tiffanie Irwin, the church pastor, allegedly accused the boys of using witchcraft, making a voodoo doll of the pastor, and sexually abusing their siblings and nieces.
Earlier this year, an investigative report from WNYC revealed two illegal voter purges that removed more than 120,000 people from voting rolls in Brooklyn, which some pundits described as “annoying” and “not voter suppression.” In fact, according to WNYC, voters in majority-Hispanic election districts were purged at a rate nearly 60 percent greater than in all other districts.
More than half a century after he says police pressured him into confessing to a crime he did not commit, 81-year-old Paul Gatling has finally cleared his name. On Monday, the Brooklyn District Attorney fully vacated Gatling’s wrongful 1964 conviction for murder, a crime for which he served 10 years in prison, The New York Times reports.
Poor, sweet, sagging Ted Cruz. The man who can barely get members of his own party to listen to him when he speaks in New York got thoroughly trounced by Donald Trump and John Kasich on Tuesday. Cruz’s showing was so bad in one part of Brooklyn that he only netted one single vote. Oh, wait—hold on just a second—it looks like Cruz actually won that precinct.
After reading a few reports of weirdness at the polls on social media this morning, I did a quick check of the New York State database of registered voters. I registered as a Democrat when I got my driver license renewed in November, so I was sure my name would appear, but I just wanted to make sure. It didn’t appear.
Like an acoustic guitarist doing shaky Jack Johnson covers at a crowded happy hour, Ted Cruz prattled on about his ideas for America or some bullshit at the back of the room, while attendees at last night’s New York City GOP gala—who can barely hear each other in here, Jesus—just tried to have a good time with their friends.