U.S. service member dies during an Iraqi Security Force mission

U.S. NEWS U.S. service member dies during an Iraqi Security Force mission https://linewsradio.com/u-s-service-member-dies-during-an-iraqi-security-force-mission/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/national-news/rss.xml

mivpiv/iStock(NEW YORK) — A United States service member who was advising Iraqi security forces was killed Saturday in the northern Nineveh province of Iraq, according to the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq.

“One U.S. service member died today during an Iraqi Security Force mission in Ninewah province, Iraq, while advising and accompanying the (Iraqi security forces) during a planned operation,” the statement said.

The name of the service member will be withheld until notification of next of kin, the statement said.

Approximately 5,000 troops are currently stationed in Iraq as part of a security agreement with the Iraqi government to train, advise, and assist the country’s troops in the fight against Islamic State, which overran large parts of Iraq in 2014.

Iraqi forces have recently launched operations in the country’s north to weed out remnants of Islamic State group.

This is the first combat-related death of an American service member in Iraq this year. Two American service members and a Defense Department civilian were killed in Manbij, Syria in January as part of the US-led coalition fighting ISIS there.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein say he ‘will never face the consequences’

U.S. NEWS Alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein say he 'will never face the consequences' https://linewsradio.com/alleged-victims-of-jeffrey-epstein-say-he-will-never-face-the-consequences/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/national-news/rss.xml

iStock(NEW YORK) — The alleged victims of accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein expressed their anger Saturday following his apparent suicide, lambasting the notion that justice was not served and the disgraced financier “will never face the consequences.”

In separate statements, at least five of his accusers spoke out after his death.

“I am extremely mad and hurt thinking he once again thought he was above us and took the easy way out,” Jena-Lisa Jones, 30, an alleged victim of Epstein when she was 14 in Florida, said.

Jones called his suicide a cowardly move.

“Now I am worried about what is going to happen, and if other people are going to get into trouble, and if they are still going to investigate everything,” she said.

Epstein, 66, was set to stand trial next year for allegedly sex trafficking dozens of girls at his home in New York and Florida.

Jennifer Araoz, 32, who claimed that Epstein raped her when she was 15, called on authorities to “pursue and prosecute his accomplices and enablers.”

“I am angry Jeffrey Epstein won’t have to face his survivors of his abuse in court. We have to live with the scars of his actions for the rest of our lives, while he will never face the consequences of the crimes he committed, the pain and trauma he caused so many people,” Araoz said.

His death came a day after a federal appellate court in New York unsealed around 2,000 pages of documents from a now-settled civil defamation case between Virginia Roberts Giuffre, an alleged Epstein victim, and British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, a longtime Epstein associate who Giuffre says recruited her and brought her to Epstein’s home for a massage.

Sigrid McCawley, a lawyer for alleged victim Giuffre, said the timing of Epstein’s apparent suicide was “no coincidence.”

“We are hopeful that the government will continue to investigate and will focus on those who participated and facilitated Epstein’s horrifying sex trafficking scheme that damaged so many,” McCawley said in a statement. “The victims await the true justice they have sought and deserve.”

Law enforcement sources told ABC News the criminal case against Epstein will not end with his death. The FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan will continue to evaluate the evidence and hear from his accusers, the sources said.

Brad Edwards, a Fort Lauderdale attorney who represents several alleged victims, urged other victims to still come forward with their own allegations.

“The victims deserved to see Epstein held accountable, and he owed it to everyone he hurt to accept responsibility for all of the pain he caused,” Edwards said. “We will continue to represent his victims and will not stop in their pursuit of finality and justice.”

Among the alleged victims Edwards represents is Courtney Wild, who attended Epstein’s detention hearing in July and came face-to-face with the disgraced millionaire.

Wild told the judge she was 14 years old when Epstein sexually abused her, allegedly in his Palm Beach, Florida, home.

Michelle Licata, an alleged Florida victim of Epstein when she was 16, said she didn’t want anyone to die.

“I just wanted him to be held accountable for his actions,” Licata said. “Simple as that.”

ABC News’ Aaron Katersky, Kaitlyn Folmer, and Kristin Shae Pisarcik contributed to this report.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

The Democratic candidates who say Walmart should stop selling guns

Political News The Democratic candidates who say Walmart should stop selling guns https://linewsradio.com/the-democratic-candidates-who-say-walmart-should-stop-selling-guns/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/politics-news/rss.xml

ABC News(DES MOINES, Iowa) — A week after two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, a growing number of Democratic presidential candidates are calling on Walmart, one of country’s leading sellers of firearms, to stop selling guns.

The calls came as candidates gathered on Saturday at the Iowa State Fair and a rally put on by the gun-control groups in Des Moines.

On Friday, four candidates — Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Cory Booker of New Jersey, as well as Julian Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio — took to Twitter to call on the retailer to change its policy after 22 people were shot dead a week earlier at a Walmart in El Paso.

Warren, who appeared to be the first candidate to publicly take the position, said that Walmart could follow the example of the CVS pharmacy when it voluntarily stopped selling tobacco products in 2014, a move Warren said had helped reduce cigarette sales nationally.

Walmart declined to comment about the calls, but referred a reporter to a tweet by Dan Bartlett, Walmart’s executive vice president of corporate affairs saying that the retail giant would be “thoughtful and deliberate” in its response to the El Paso massacre.

“Walmart doesn’t sell handguns (except in Alaska) or military-style rifles. We’ve also increased purchase age & don’t make any sale without government-approved background check,” the tweet said.

In 2015, Walmart said that it would no longer sell high-powered rifles, which were associated with multiple mass shootings, at its U.S. stores.

In the days since the shootings, which claimed a total of 31 lives and left many more injured, Democratic lawmakers have stepped up their call for universal background checks, an assault weapons ban and other measures that they say would reduce mass shootings.

As candidates mingled with potential voters at the Iowa State Fair on Saturday, they were pressed on whether they agreed with the position taken by rival candidates.

When pressed if Walmart should stop selling guns, Senator Kamala Harris of California said, “yeah I do…it’s not that everyone needs to stop selling guns, but there need to be checks and balances.”

Asked the same question later in the afternoon, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York simply said, “Yes.”

Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio suggested that the retailer might reconsider the types of firearms that it makes available, and pointed to the decision by Dick’s Sporting Goods in the aftermath of the shooting at a school in Parkland, Florida, to stop selling assault weapons and to raise the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21.

Of Walmart, he said: “I think if you keep it to hunting rifles and those kind of things. I think that’s appropriate.”

Edith Honan contributed to this report.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

2020 Democratic candidates call for Senate action on background checks

Political News 2020 Democratic candidates call for Senate action on background checks https://linewsradio.com/2020-democratic-candidates-call-for-senate-action-on-background-checks/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/politics-news/rss.xml

liveslow/iStock(DES MOINES, Iowa) — Seventeen Democratic presidential candidates joined gun control advocates at a rally in Iowa on Saturday and called for the Senate to vote on a pair of background check bills passed by the House earlier this year.

A week after 31 people died in mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, the 2020 hopefuls slammed Republicans for inaction as massacres involving guns become increasingly common.

Appearing at an event put on by the groups Everytown For Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, the candidates cited broad public support for requiring a background check for gun purchases and called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, to call lawmakers back from their August recess to vote.

“Reconvene the Senate now,” Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders thundered, to applause. “McConnell wants to vote against gun safety legislation. Let him vote against it. But reconvene the United States Senate. Let’s have that discussion, let’s have that vote, do what the American people want!”

Earlier this week, McConnell said he doesn’t see a point in calling the Senate back into session, despite numerous calls from Democrats to do so, and that he is on board with passing some sort of legislation in September that has bipartisan support in both chambers of Congress, as well as the backing of President Donald Trump.

The president said Friday that he thinks “very meaningful background checks” can pass Congress, but echoed McConnell in saying that the Senate can take up the issue in September.

Democrats have meanwhile faulted the president for not taking responsibility for his fiery rhetoric has fanned divisions in the country.

“President Trump has spewed hate and division and racism and homophobia every moment on his presidency,” Sen Kirsten Gillibrand of New York told the crowd.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who became the latest candidate to release a gun-control platform Saturday morning, also called on consumers to use the “power of the purse” and boycott Walmart, one of the leading sellers of guns and ammunition in the country, until the company agrees to stop selling guns. She also called for a boycott of Wells Fargo bank, which does business with the National Rifle Association.

“I think it would be a lot more effective if they just stop selling guns,” she said to cheer. “It’s up to every Walmart customer … to say I’ve got choices on where I spend my money. I’ve got choices where I do my banking.”

“I’d rather spend my money and I’d rather do my banking in line with my values,” she said.

Warren’s remark prompted push-back from former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, the billionaire founder of Everytown and a funder of Moms Demand Action, who joked in his remarks that there wouldn’t be a gun control forum this weekend without the commercial success of his financial empire.

Some differences did emerge at the forum, including how candidates can best frame their message around gun control.

Former Vice President Joe Biden said that Republicans “should be exposed” for blocking background checks, and said that opposition to gun control measures was motivated by profits.

“The gun manufacturers are supplying the leadership of the NRA with their income… It’s all about commerce for them,” Biden said.

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, who noted that he is a gun owner and a hunter, said that activist needed to find common ground with gun owners who, like gun control advocates, are “worried about their kids” being safe in school.

“I don’t believe and nor want to take everybody’s guns away,” Bullock said. “What we want to do is keep our families and communities safe.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Model and influencer with cerebral palsy inspires with viral videos

Maya Table(NEW YORK) — Most Instagram influencers wouldn’t share a simple few second clip of them walking back and forth across their room. But most people aren’t changing the very conversation around influencers like Damion Gross.

When Gross was around 5 years old his mother noticed he wasn’t sitting and crawling like his brothers, so she decided to take him to a doctor. It was there that he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, a group of disorders that affects a person’s mobility, balance and posture.

His mother was told he would most likely never be able to walk.

“The doctor he told me and my mom that I was never going to walk. He said I would be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life but look, I proved him wrong I’m walking,” Gross said in a video he posted on Twitter that garnered more than 90,000 views.

Now 20 years old, not only is he walking, Gross is a content creator and aspiring model who’s changing the conversation around disabilities.

He was inspired to post that first video after he came across footage on social media where a man was bullying a disabled person. The video he shared in March now has over 3,500 likes.

“I said, ‘You know what, let me just post a video of me walking, letting people know that I’m not ashamed of this, that I’m comfortable in my body,'” he told “Good Morning America.”

The clip blew up instantly, and once he saw the positive feedback pouring in, he knew this was what he needed to do — to give a voice and shine a positive light on his community, Gross said.

Now with over 62,000 followers on Twitter and over 53,000 followers on Instagram, Gross said people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities reach out to him on a daily basis, praising him and even thanking him for helping them through depression.

“That shows me I’m doing something right,” he said.

Gross said he can relate, as he too went through a period of depression during elementary school and middle school when he would get bullied for his condition. It got so bad at one point that he started to have suicidal thoughts, Gross told “GMA.”

“I didn’t have tough skin and it would always get to me,” he said, before he eventually realized, “at the end of the day, it’s just words.”

“I’m not going to let anybody take my life just because they said something mean,” he added.

He’s been in a good place since, focusing on his family, his well-being and career goals.

After his videos went viral, a small fashion company reached out to him to see if he wanted to model their new clothing line. Gross was hesitant at first, but said he was pleasantly surprised at the photographs and realized it was something worth pursuing.

A few weeks later, Maya Table, producer and director of Samfrank Productions, came across his page on social media and connected with him.

Calling Gross kind and genuine, Table said he had a natural talent at modeling.

“I think him being a model will be so inspiring — normalizing is a big part of it,” Table told “GMA.” “I’m just really excited about where he goes next.”

Using his growing platform, Gross said his goal is to make people comfortable with their disabilities, so instead of feeling shame they can feel empowered to come out with their own stories.

“Society likes to put us on the back burner and not really acknowledge us,” Gross said, “and that’s what I’m trying to do — I’m trying to break the walls and break barriers.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Alabama football running back could miss season

Sports News Alabama football running back could miss season https://linewsradio.com/alabama-football-running-back-could-miss-season/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/sports-news/rss.xml

33 ft/iStock(TUSCALOOSA, Ala.) — ESPN reports Alabama freshman Trey Sanders may have suffered a season-ending foot injury during the team’s practice. Head football coach Nick Saban is expected to give an update on the running back’s condition following the team’s scrimmage on Saturday.

Losing Sanders would put a dent in the Crimson Tides’ depth chart at running back. Josh Jacobs and Damien Harris were drafted into the NFL this past spring, leaving the team with Najee Harris, Brian Robinson Jr, and freshman Keilan Robinson at the position.

Sanders had shown promise since arriving on campus, according to Saban. He was the No. 2-ranked running back prospect by ESPN in the 2019 signing class.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Alleged Dayton gunman Connor Betts showed signs of misogyny

U.S. NEWS Alleged Dayton gunman Connor Betts showed signs of misogyny https://linewsradio.com/alleged-dayton-gunman-connor-betts-showed-signs-of-misogyny/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/national-news/rss.xml

Dayton Police Department(DAYTON, Ohio) — Many questions remain in the motivations of the man who allegedly committed a mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, last weekend, leaving nine dead before responding officers shot him to death.

But officials briefed on the investigation told ABC News the suspected shooter demonstrated a misogyny that was far more extreme than any of his political leanings.

In that, he follows a bleak pattern among mass shooters.

“There are red flags,” Jacquelyn Campbell of the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing and one of the leading domestic violence researchers in the nation told ABC News. “There are things about these shooters’ behavior before these things happen that I think we as a country need to think hard about in terms of trying to make these things less frequently happen.”

After many mass shootings, information comes out that links the shooter to gender-based and domestic violence — and many massacres, like this one, include female family members, partners and ex-partners among the victims.

Ten of 2018’s 20 mass shootings, as defined by ABC News, were instances of domestic violence, including against intimate partners or family members, a January ABC analysis showed. One of the victims of the Dayton shooting was Megan Betts, the alleged shooter’s 22-year-old sister.

A Mother Jones analysis released this spring found that in at least 22 mass shootings since 2011, which accounts for over a third of public attacks, the shooters “had a history of domestic violence, specifically targeted women, or had stalked and harassed women.”

Those attacks range from ones where the shooter had a history of violence against women — like the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting and 2017 Sutherland Springs church shooting — to those apparently motivated by hatred of women: the 2014 Isla Vista shooting and 2018 Tallahassee shooting, among others.

And some are actual incidents of domestic or intimate-partner violence — such as a January shooting in Louisiana and a 2018 shooting in Chicago.

It’s difficult to define a profile of mass shooters, as those incidents are relatively rare, Sierra Smucker, an associate policy researcher at the nonprofit RAND Corporation think tank, told ABC.

But “domestic violence, unlike mass shootings, is incredible common,” she added.

The domestic violence homicide rate increased from 2015 to 2017 — the latest available years for data — after a long decline, a Northeastern University study published this spring found.

“A larger atmosphere in which domestic violence is accepted and happens often is going to definitely increase the likelihood that misogyny and hatred of women and violence towards women can become a mass shooting,” Smucker said.

Campbell noted that domestic and intimate partner violence is committed even by young people — mostly boys and teens — in middle and high school, often due to an accumulation of trauma experienced in childhood. But, she said, “we don’t have any really good interventions for them.”

High school classmates of Connor Betts, 24, the suspected Dayton shooter, for example, said he was suspended for making a “rape list” of female classmates he wanted to sexually assault, The Associated Press reported. They said he was later suspended over a “hit list” found in a school bathroom.

A former camp-mate of Betts told The Cincinnati Enquirer he saw Betts choke a girl he was dating as a teen.

ABC News could not independently confirm that report.

Beyond misogyny and domestic violence, much of the conversation around shootings lately has been about white nationalism and racism, as highlighted by the El Paso shooting, in which the alleged shooter targeted Hispanics, authorities said.

But Gina Longo, an assistant sociology professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, said racist motivations and misogynistic ones are not independent of each other.

“These are all intersectional and they all influence and inform one another,” she said.

That violence often bubbles up, Longo added, from men seeing “different minority groups, including women,” claiming rights and privileges historically awarded to white men in America.

“You hear a lot of men talking not necessarily about women in their own family, but ‘feminism,'” Longo told ABC News. “It’s ‘out there’ and there are certain groups of women who are trying to ‘poison the well,’ if we want to look at it like that, with these different ideas — and that is what they’re seeing as the threat, as this faceless feminism that’s coming after them.”

This can be exacerbated, she said, by online chatter. Just as social media can be used to influence elections, Longo said, “I think it’s the same thing with promoting violence or misogyny or letting it fester in certain places.”

While law enforcement and social scientists are still playing catch-up to understand how people’s actions online translate into real life threats, those close to an individual in real life have a role to play, the experts say, with policies like extreme risk protection orders, known as “red flag” laws.

With those policies, lawmakers could take lessons from the fact that the presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation greatly increases the risk of homicide.

In the case of the Dayton shooting, as far as public evidence has shown, Betts had not been charged with any sort of domestic violence, which could have prevented him from obtaining a gun. But his ex-girlfriend said he allegedly had a fascination with violence.

“She may not have wanted to break up with him (she might think there are possibilities there), she may not want him to go to jail, she may not want to press charges on domestic violence even if there was something there, but she might say, ‘This guy does not need to have this huge arsenal of guns, this is concerning to me,'” Campbell said, arguing that there should be an easy and encouraged way of doing so as part of laws and policies.

There are laws in many states that prevent a person from having access to a gun if they are charged or convicted of domestic violence or if a restraining order is in place, and states with those more restrictive laws tend to have lower rates of domestic violence homicides.

“Extreme risk protection orders are really drawing on the success, in some ways, of these domestic violence-related gun laws to expand that policy mechanism to people who may not be in situations that are specifically domestic or intimate partner-based but may suggest they are a threat to people around them if they have access to firearms,” Smucker said.

“[Those] laws recognize that the people who are most likely to know when someone may be dangerous are people who are very close to that person,” she added.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Yankees general manager stopped at gunpoint by police

Sports News Yankees general manager stopped at gunpoint by police https://linewsradio.com/yankees-general-manager-stopped-at-gunpoint-by-police/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/sports-news/rss.xml

cmannphoto/iStock(NEW YORK) — ESPN reports New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman was pulled over and forced from his vehicle at gunpoint Friday evening after police mistook him for a suspected car thief.

Cashman told the New York Post that his white Jeep Wrangler was recently stolen, then discovered and returned to him earlier this week by New York City police. However, the NYPD did not take the vehicle off a stolen car list.

Police in the Connecticut town of Darien reportedly ran Cashman’s license plates and determined it was stolen. When Cashman was pulled over, police believed they may have caught a suspected car thief.

Cashman says patrol cars pursued him as he pulled out of a gas station with their “guns drawn.”

Cashman says his car is not off the stolen list. He believes the positive that comes out of this experience is, “The public should take encouragement when someone is in a stolen vehicle they’re not going to get very far.”

Brian Cashman is 52-years-old and has served as the Yankees General Manager and Senior Vice President since 1998.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Scoreboard roundup — 8/9/19

Sports News Scoreboard roundup -- 8/9/19 https://linewsradio.com/scoreboard-roundup-8-9-19/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/sports-news/rss.xml

iStock(NEW YORK) — Here are the scores from yesterday’s sports events:

Milwaukee   6  Texas   5


Oakland 7, Chi White Sox 0
Houston 3, Baltimore 2
Toronto 8, N-Y Yankees 2
Detroit 5, Kansas City 2
Boston 16, L-A Angels 4
Cleveland 6, Minnesota 2
Tampa Bay 5, Seattle 3


Atlanta 8, Miami 4
N-Y Mets 7, Washington 6
Cincinnati 5, Chi Cubs 2
St. Louis 6, Pittsburgh 2
Arizona 3, L-A Dodgers 2, F/11
San Diego 7, Colorado 1
Philadelphia 9, San Francisco 6

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019

Ohio man threatens Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Facebook

Political News Ohio man threatens Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Facebook https://linewsradio.com/ohio-man-threatens-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-on-facebook/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/politics-news/rss.xml

yorkfoto/iStock(TOLEDO, Ohio) — An Ohio man has been hit with federal charges after threatening Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with an online post that said the outspoken congresswoman from New York “should be shot.”

Timothy James Ireland Jr., 41, was arrested at his Toledo residence Thursday and was charged in U.S. District Court for making threats toward Ocasio-Cortez on his personal Facebook account.

“She should be shot,” Ireland allegedly wrote on July 23. “Can’t fire me, my employer would load the gun for me.”

Ireland has been charged with one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, one count of being a fugitive in possession of a firearm and one count of making interstate threats.

“There is absolutely no place in the marketplace of ideas for threats of violence against any person, especially those who are elected to represent the American people,” said Justin Herdman, U.S. Attorney of the Northern District of Ohio. “Disagreement on political issues cannot lead to acts of violence, and if it does, we will seek federal prison time.”

When questioned by Capitol Police about the alleged Facebook post, Ireland said he was proud of it, according to the affidavit.

Agents found seven rounds of ammunition in Ireland’s home, officials said.

It was not immediately clear if Ireland had legal representation.

A spokeswoman for Ocasio-Cortez declined comment.

Last month, Ocasio-Cortez was also threatened with being shot after a Louisiana police officer called her a “vile idiot” who “needs a round.” The officer, Charles Rispoli, was fired four days later.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Aug 2019