By Valerie D. Lockhart
SUN EXECUTIVE EDITOR
A recent resolution calling for the impeachment of President Donald Trump was strongly
rejected by members of the House of Representatives in a 364-58 vote. The resolution was introduced by Rep. Al Green (D-Texas).
Green says Trump has “brought disrepute, contempt, ridicule and disgrace on the
presidency” and “sown discord among the people of the United States.”
When introducing the resolution, Green said, "Donald John Trump, by causing such
harm to the society of the United States is unfit to be president and warrants impeachment, trial and removal from office."
Trump has been criticized for his handling of racial conflicts involving white supremacists in Charlottesville, VA, for not rendering sufficient help to hurricane victims in Puerto Rico and for retweeting anti-Muslim videos put up by a British nationalist group. He was also c criticized for comments made toward NFL players who protested police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem.
“Very important that NFL players stand tomorrow and always for playing of our National Anthem. Respect our flag and our country,” tweeted Trump. “If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our flag and country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend!”
Calls for equal treatment in assisting hurricane victims in Puerto Rico were answered with threats to withdraw aid. During the hurricane that struck Texas, Trump gave $1 million of his own money to help its victims.
“@POTUS It is not that you do not get it; you are incapable of fulfilling the moral imperative to help the people of PR. Shame on you!,” tweeted San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz following Trump’s visit to her city. “Your comments about Puerto Rico are unbecoming of a Commander in Chief they seem more to come from a ‘Hater in Chief.’”
Although many Democratic leaders are unhappy with Trump’s actions, they do not support impeachment. Among those voting to table the resolution were House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.).
“Now is not the time to consider articles of impeachment,” they reportedly released in a statement.
Democratic leaders are awaiting the results from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation regarding Russia tapering with the U.S. election.
Meanwhile, people are taking to the internet urging American voters to support impeachment efforts.
“Friends, whether we like it or not, we now have a bigot in the White House who incites hatred and hostility,” said Green.
Prevent auto theft: Drivers urged to lock it or lose it
The Michigan Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) cautions the public that auto thefts are on the rise in Michigan. In 2016, Michigan reported 20,477 stolen vehicles and current data indicates that 2017 is on track to potentially surpass those numbers.
A vehicle is stolen every 44 seconds in the United States with nearly half of those thefts involving an unlocked door or keys left in the ignition. In addition to locking your vehicle and taking keys with you, these precautions could lessen the likelihood of you becoming a victim of auto theft:
• Closing windows when your vehicle is parked
• Avoiding leaving valuables in your vehicle, especially where they can be seen
• Not leaving your vehicle running unattended
• Parking in well-lit areas
• Keeping your vehicle in your garage, if possible
• Keeping exterior house lights on at night
• Installing a car alarm or using a theft deterrent device like a steering wheel lock or gear shift column lock
You should also keep an eye out for suspicious vehicles in your neighborhood. If you see out-of-place persons, report them to law enforcement immediately. If you are purchasing or selling a vehicle on an online sales site, complete the transaction during business hours at a police department or Secretary of State office. Never invite strangers to your home or meet in non-public places. Always inspect the vehicle title closely before purchase and if anything looks odd, postpone the sale until you can confirm its legitimacy.
Over the last 10 years, Michigan’s Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) has assisted in the reduction of motor vehicle thefts in Michigan by 56 percent. The ATPA awards grants to law enforcement agencies, prosecutors’ offices and non-profit organizations for the investigation, apprehension, prosecution and prevention of motor vehicle thefts. During the 2016 grant year, ATPA grant-funded motor vehicle theft teams made 1,819 arrests and recovered vehicles and parts worth approximately $37 million. For more information about the ATPA, visit www.michigan.gov/atpa.
House silence calls to impeach Trump
Tips sought to identify human remains
Investigators from the Michigan State Police (MSP) Alpena Post and the Alcona County Sheriff’s Department are seeking information from the public to help identify human remains found in Northern Michigan 23 years ago.
A bow hunter discovered the human skeletal remains in October 1994 while walking in a wooded area off Bamfield Road, between Curtisville and Alcona Dam, in Alcona County. The Alcona County Sheriff’s Department was the lead investigating agency with the MSP crime lab assisting in the recovery of the remains from the scene.
Michigan State University anthropologists have determined the remains are that of a female 30-50 years old and approximately 4’ 7” to 5’ 6” tall. The woman was likely of European ancestry, commonly referred to as Caucasian, but no population group should be excluded. Evidence of a fracture to the skull indicates she may have experienced some type of trauma at or around the time of her death. The remains may have been in the wooded area for up to four years before being discovered.
As DNA technology advanced, so has the investigation. A mitochondrial DNA sample was collected by scientists at the University of North Texas Health Science Center for Human Identification and a full DNA profile has been uploaded to the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) database. A case profile has been posted on the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) database.
Several artistic renderings have been done by forensic artists and are being released to help prompt tips from the public. The following techniques were used:
First image (left) – Two-dimensional sketch completed by a MSP forensic artist. This was drawn in in graphite and used anthropological landmarks on the skull to give a glimpse of what the woman may have looked like when alive.
Second image (middle) – Digital rendering completed by a forensic artist from Louisiana State University’s Missing Persons Molecular and Medical Genetics Department. This technique was aided by a 3D scan of the skull.
Third image (right) – 3D clay model of the skull completed by a FBI forensic artist. This technique is much like the two-dimensional approach, but uses clay applied to the cast skull.
Members of Detroit east side gang charged with racketeering
By Valerie D. Lockhart
SUN EXECUTIVE EDITOR
Thirteen members of the Smokecamp/Original Paid Bosses (OPB) street gang are charged with violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act (RICO).
The gang, which operates on Detroit’s east side near East Seven Mile Road and Albion Street, is accused of using vacant homes (trap houses) and businesses to sell drugs, commit robberies and extort money.
An investigation conducted by Detroit One, a collaboration of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, revealed that the gang sold hard drugs such as crack cocaine, heroin, marijuana and ecstasy and used guns to protect their products. In 2014-2015, drugs were distributed as far as to Kentucky, West Virginia and Ohio.
“ATF remains relentless in the effort to disrupt violent gangs operating in Detroit neighborhoods so law-abiding citizens can live in peace,” said ATF Detroit Acting Special Agent in Charge Marcus Watson. “This investigation is another example of how by working together, the Detroit One Initiative is making a difference.”
In order to be found guilty of violating the RICO statute, the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt: (1) that an enterprise existed; (2) that the enterprise affected interstate commerce; (3) that the defendant was associated with or employed by the enterprise; (4) that the defendant engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity; and (5) that the defendant conducted or participated in the conduct of the enterprise through that pattern of racketeering activity through the commission of at least two acts of racketeering activity as set forth in the indictment.
“This indictment is the latest in a string of cases charging violent gang members in the City of Detroit,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Daniel L. Lemisch. “We are grateful to the Detroit One collaborative of law enforcement, who are all dedicated to improving the lives of the residents of Detroit.”
Members facing charges are:
• Korey Sanders, a/k/a “No Loan Corleon,” “Stax,” 26, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy and willful engagement in firearms business without a license;
• Jerray Key, a/k/a “Chino,” “Dre,” 28, of Canton, with RICO conspiracy and willful engagement in firearms business without a license;
• Deshawn Langston, a/k/a “Pook,” “Slips,” 26, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy;
• Richard Langston, a/k/a “Dub,” “Rich,” “Blow,” 27, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy;
• Hakeem Bunnell, a/k/a “LB Dub,” 24, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy, assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering, and possession of a firearm during, and in relation to, a crime of violence;
• Keenan Nielbock, a/k/a “Dolla,” “Keno” 30, of Taylor, with RICO conspiracy and willful engagement in firearms business without a license;
• Caraun Key, a/k/a “Luch,” “Ron,” “Slick,” 26, of Detroit with RICO conspiracy;
• Darryl Key, a/k/a “DB,” “Big Baby,” 27, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy;
• Tyree Williams, a/k/a “Snoop,” 24, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy, assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering, and possession of a firearm during, and in relation to, a crime of violence;
• Romale Gibson Jr., a/k/a “Santana,” 24, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy;
• Cary Dailey, a/k/a “Cease,” 28, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy;
• Antonio Langston, a/k/a “Tone,” 29, of Detroit, with RICO conspiracy; and
• Carlos Davis, a/k/a “Los,” “Loso,” 24, of Detroit with RICO conspiracy, assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering, possession of a firearm during, and in relation to, a crime of violence, and willful engagement in firearms business without a license.
If convicted, each member faces 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 or twice the proceeds of the offense.
"Ensuring the safety and security of our residents in the city of Detroit is our number one priority. With the collaborative efforts of Detroit One partnership, we will continue our efforts to target and dismantle gangs, as well as, other violent offenders that pose a threat to the safety and well being of our city," said Chief James Craig.