Sarasota Police Deputy Chief Pat Robinson talks to assembled media about the recovery of remains identified as belonging to missing Sarasota teen Jabez Spann, Tuesday, February 19, 2019. (Spectrum Bay News 9)
SARASOTA, Fla. -- The Sarasota Police Department announced Tuesday evening that remains found this past weekend were positively identified as a match for Jabez Spann, a teen missing since September 2017.
The dental remains proved a match for Spann, who was last seen by his family on September 4, 2017. He was 14 at the time of his disappearance.
Robinson said at this time it was unknown how long the remains were at that location. He indicated that his agency would remain the lead agency in what had become a death investigation.
This is a developing story. We'll bring you more information as we get it.
Chicago (CNN)Two law enforcement sources with knowledge of the investigation tell CNN that Chicago Police believe actor Jussie Smollet paid two men to orchestrate an assault on him that he reported late last month.
The men, who are brothers, were arrested Wednesday but released without charges Friday after Chicago police cited the discovery of "new evidence."
The sources told CNN the two men are now cooperating fully with law enforcement.
Smollett told authorities he was attacked early January 29 by two men who were "yelling out racial and homophobic slurs." He said one attacker put a rope around his neck and poured an unknown chemical substance on him.The sources told CNN there are records that show the two brothers purchased the rope found around Smollett's neck at a hardware store in Chicago.
CNN's attempts Saturday to reach both Smollett's representative and attorney were unsuccessful.
Smollett identifies as gay and since 2015 has played the gay character of Jamal on the Fox TV drama "Empire."What happened
According to Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, the actor told detectives he was attacked by two men near the lower entrance of a Loews hotel in Chicago. Police were told the two men yelled "'Empire' fa***t" and "'Empire' n***er'" while striking him.
The day after the incident, police released surveillance images that showed two silhouetted individuals walking down a sidewalk, and police said they were wanted for questioning.
The two men were arrested Wednesday. Police on Friday said the men were being viewed as "potential suspects" and that detectives had "probable cause that they may have been involved in an alleged crime."
But by Friday night they had been released, Guglielmi said, "due to new evidence as a result of today's investigations."
"And detectives have additional investigative work to complete," he added.
One of the men has appeared on "Empire," Guglielmi said. A police source also told CNN on Friday night that the men had a previous affiliation with Smollett, but did not provide additional details.Smollett has expressed frustration about not being believed
Following the alleged attack, Smollett's colleagues and fans rallied around him, expressing shock and sadness.
"We have to love each other regardless of what sexual orientation we are because it shows that we are united on a united front," Lee Daniels, the creator of "Empire," said in a video posted to his Instagram page on January 29. "And no racist f*** can come in and do the things that they did to you. Hold your head up, Jussie. I'm with you."
Smollett gave his first detailed account of what he says was a hate crime against him, and the aftermath, in an interview with ABC's "Good Morning America" that aired Thursday.
During the interview he expressed frustration at not being believed.
"It feels like if I had said it was a Muslim or a Mexican or someone black I feel like the doubters would have supported me a lot much more," Smollett said. "And that says a lot about the place where we are as a country right now."Smollett also refuted reports that said he told police the attackers wore "Make America Great Again" hats.
"I never said that," he told ABC's Robin Roberts. "I didn't need to add anything like that. They called me a f****t, they called me a n****r. There's no which way you cut it. I don't need some MAGA hat as the cherry on some racist sundae."
www.cnn.com/2019/02/16/entertainment/jussie-smollett-attack/index.htmlCNN'sRyan Young and Brad Parks reported from Chicago, while Dakin Andone reported and wrote this story in Atlanta. CNN's Lisa Respers France, Sandra Gonzalez and Shawn Nottingham contributed to this report.
Another day, another allegation of sexual misconduct against R. Kelly. The Washington Post reports that a young woman filed a complaint with the Dallas Police Department last week, accusing the R&B singer of knowingly giving her a sexually transmitted disease while she was “being groomed to join Kelly’s sex cult.” The woman was 19 at the time of the allegations.
In a statement to the Post, Philadelphia attorney Lee Merritt adds that “our client was the victim of several forms of criminal misconduct by Kelly, including, but not limited to, unlawful restraint, furnishing alcohol and illegal drugs to a minor, and aggravated assault (via the referenced intentional STD infection).” Later, Merritt says “Kelly gradually introduced the cult to our client over the course of their relationship, culminating with an explanation that she would have to sign a contract and offer collateral information about herself and her family for Kelly’s protection.” These details align with the disturbing allegations, published last year by Buzzfeed, that Kelly imprisons women in a multi-state operation that many have likened to a “sex cult.”
In a statement released to Spin, the Dallas Police Department provided the following statement:
On April 9, 2018, a 20-year-old female complainant came to Jack Evans Police Headquarters to report an incident between her and an adult male that was alleged to have occurred in December 2017. The complainant stated she was in a consensual sexual relationship with an adult male who knowingly gave her a sexually transmitted disease (STD) in Dallas. Detectives with the Crimes Against Persons Division are working with the Dallas County District Attorney’s office to review this incident. This incident is not being investigated as a sexual assault since both parties were consenting adults.
A Kelly representative tells the post that the singer “categorically denies all claims and allegations” related to this new complaint.
In the fall, a former girlfriend of Kelly’s spoke to Rolling Stone about her own harrowing experiences with Kelly, which included being held against her will, forced intercourse with Kelly’s other girlfriends, and demands regarding her attire and diet.
NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. -- Detectives with the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office are asking potential additional victims of a teacher arrested for sexually battering a teen in 2009 to come forward.
Deputies arrested Jeremiah Smith, 38, of Port Richey, for alleged sexual battery of a 17-year-old boy. Rosa said the reported victim came forward earlier this month and told investigators the incidents happened while Smith was a youth minister at the boy’s church, First United Methodist Church of Hudson. The alleged abuse took place in Smith’s home at the time.
According to an arrest report, a controlled call took place between Smith and the alleged victim. The document states Smith repeatedly apologized and said he “made a series of horrible decisions.”
When interviewed by a detective, Smith reportedly acknowledged parts of the account but said the incident happened when the boy was 18-years-old.
The news of Smith’s arrest came as a blow to the Genesis Preparatory School community. According to the school’s website, Smith taught middle school language arts and high school English at the private school.
Principal Antonia Hapsis-Ladas said he substitute taught for several months last school year, then began his full-time position in August.
“We’re all numb of the whole situation. The well-being and security of our students is key here,” said Hapsis-Ladas.
Hapsis-Ladas said all teachers have to pass background checks and Smith’s revealed nothing concerning. A letter explaining the situation was sent to parents Tuesday afternoon, and an assembly for students, faculty, and any parent who wants to attend is planned for Wednesday.
One mother whose 14-year-old son who was in Smith’s English class said she was shocked by the news.
“For the most part, he was always a good teacher and very respectful,” said the woman, who declined to give her name. “Extremely surprised. Very disappointed right now.”
Rosa said at this time, there’s no evidence pointing to additional victims. Smith’s biography on the Genesis web site notes he was involved and teaching and coaching middle and high school students for 20 years.
“He has been around children and worked in that field for so many years. Not every person who commits this type of crime commits this crime multiple times. However, we’ve had that before,” said Rosa.
In addition to Genesis Prep and First United Methodist Church of Hudson, detectives said Smith also worked at Journey Church in New Port Richey.
Hapsis-Ladas said Smith is no longer employed at Genesis.
First United Methodist Church of Hudson had no comment Tuesday.
An investigation is underway after an incident at the Florida State Fair on Friday between a Hillsborough County deputy and a teenage girl.
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. -- An investigation is underway after an incident at the Florida State Fair on Friday between a Hillsborough County deputy and a teenage girl. According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, the girl, Tatiana Colbert, and her family are accusing a deputy of causing bodily harm to her as she was being trespassed from the fairgrounds.
The 14-year-old claims she was trying to run away from a fight that had broken out when she said the deputy grabbed her and tried to take her into custody using force.
However, the sheriff's office laims she fought with the deputy when he tried to detain her.
Someone took cell phone video of the incident that shows the two struggling on the ground near a tent.
"He slung me into the gate, the gate broke with my head and my back. He got on top of me and was choking me with his hands and he was punching me in my face," Colbert said.
Colbert's family filed a complaint with the sheriff's office due to the injuries she received to her eye and face.
The sheriff's office issued a statement saying, the teenager "was trespassed from the Florida State Fair during student night after she committed battery on a law enforcement officer. Despite receiving injuries to his face while trying to detain her, the deputy involved chose not to file charges against her."
No other information has been released on the incident.
Limestone city of Kingston, Ontario Canada on the shores of Lake Ontario two hours north of Syracuse New York, Paul brings over 30 years of Financial Services experience with one of North America’s largest Bank. His areas of expertise include Retail and Commercial Banking, Human Resource Management and Education. Paul has held Senior Positions of Vice President and Regional Manager, Vice President Human Resources and District Vice President. A graduate of the University of Western Ontario in London, Paul also obtained a Fellowship of The Canadian Securities Institute.
Paul and his wife Dawn have three children, 2 step children and three grandchildren.
They have a second home in Madeira Beach, Florida and it is here where Paul met Dr. Jaquetta Stevens. Dr. Stevens was in search of a mentor and advisor to assist with her new and expanding business ventures. Although Paul was enjoying retirement, he soon discovered that Doctor Jaquetta Stevens had enormous talent and passion to help others succeed. As with any new business it is vital to be surrounded with liked minded people who share a commitment to excellence. Doctor Stevens convinced him to join JSN Media to provide her with valuable mentorship and guidance. His business acumen, Human Resources insight, strategic thinking along with his unique interpersonal skills make him a great asset to the JSN Media Team. Among his many interests, Paul enjoys spending time with daily fitness, golf, music, reading, faith based activities and family.
St. Petersburg police are looking for a man who they say crashed a stolen car into a house at 3801 19th Avenue South in St. Petersburg overnight.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- St. Petersburg police are looking for a man who they say crashed a stolen car into a house at 3801 19th Avenue South in St. Petersburg overnight.
Police said a black Hyundai went through a fence and crashed into the resident's parked car, pushing it into the house.
Police said the Hyundai was stolen and they don't know what caused the crash or who was driving the car.
The Fire Department checked the house, and luckiy, it is still structurally sound, so the residents weren't displaced. And thankfully, no one was hurt.
If you have any information on who may have been driving the stolen Hyundai, who are asked to contact the St. Petersburg Police Department at 727-893-7780.
Jamal Walker faces charges of second-degree murder. (St. Petersburg Police Department)
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Monday for the man accused of firing a shot that killed a woman who was sitting on her St. Petersburg front porch.
According to St. Petersburg police, Walker, 29, was shooting at someone in a pickup truck as it traveled on 45th Street North.
Police said he missed the truck, instead shooting and killing Kendrick. Witnesses reported hearing as man yas five shots. Police said Kendrick's five children were inside the home at the time of the shooting but were not injured.
Walker was arrested in November and charged with second-degree murder.
Police said the gunshots instead hit 38-year-old Aesha Kendrick, who was on her porch.
The fire happened at a home located at 16860 US Hwy 19. (Cait McVey/Spectrum Bay News 9)
LARGO, Fla. -- Two women were found dead in a mobile home fire in Largo early Friday morning.
The women's bodies were found at a home located at 16860 US Hwy 19.
Police are considering their deaths suspicious due to the condition of the bodies.
"We all know when there is a fire, there's a considerable amount of damage that is done and for us, locating any criminal evidence or any kind of clues that would lead us to figure out what happened here is much more difficult in a fire situation," said Largo Police Lt. Randall Chaney.
The names of the victim's have not been identified yet pending notification of next of kin.
Neighbors tried to help after the fire started, bringing over tools to pry open the front door. Another witness called 911.
Largo Police are working with the State Fire Marshall on the investigation. A police K-9 is also being used.
No other information has been released.
BRADENTON, Fla. — Police are investigating a fatal shooting in Bradenton.
While conducting the investigation, two other people were found wounded. The two wounded individuals were taken to an area hospital for treatment.
Detectives are currently working to determine if these cases are related.
Gonzelez’s death is being investigated as a homicide.
If anyone has any information on this case, please contact Detective James Curulla at (941) 932-9311.
You may also email your information to CRIMETIPS@CITYOFBRADENTON.COM or to remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward of up to $3,000, call Crime Stoppers (toll-free) at 1-866-634-8477 (TIPS) or send an anonymous E-Tip thru the web at www.manateecrimestoppers.com.
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