Welcome to Sott.net
Sat, 03 Jun 2023
The World for People who Think

Society's Child

Alarm Clock

Kindergartener interrogated over cap gun until he pees his pants, then suspended 10 days

cap gun
© Unknown
In the latest incident of anti-gun hysteria to erupt in a school setting, a kindergarten boy has been suspended from school for 10 days because he showed a friend his cowboy-style cap gun on the way to school.

The incident happened on Wednesday morning at about 8:30 a.m. on a school bus in Calvert County, Maryland, reports The Washington Post.

The kindergartener had brought the toy gun because his friend had brought a water gun the previous day. He later told his mother than he "really, really" wanted his friend to see it.

The suspended boy had acquired the menacing, plastic, orange-tipped weapon at Frontier Town, a western-themed campground with a water park, mini golf and the like.

School officials at Dowell Elementary School in the town of Lusby proceeded to question the five-year-old for over two hours before finally calling his mother, whom The Post also does not name.

The principal eventually called the boy's mother at 10:50 a.m. By that time, the five-year-old had wet his pants (which the mother called highly unusual).

The principal told the boy's mother that the boy had simulated shooting someone on the bus with the offending novelty. However, both the boy and his older sister, a first-grader, say the principal is not telling the truth.

Che Guevara

Turkey police crack down on anti-government protests

Dozens injured as police use water cannon and tear gas at escalating anti-government rallies in Istanbul and Ankara.

Turkish riot police have used tear gas and water cannon during clashes with thousands of protesters in Istanbul, as more people joined the second day of the fiercest anti-government demonstrations for years.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday called for an immediate end to the protests, that were triggered by government redevelopment plans of a park in Istanbul's Taksim Square.

The protests have since widened into a broader show of defiance against Erdogan and his government and spread to Ankara and other cities.

Che Guevara

Revolution underway in NATO protectorate Turkey? Istanbul Occupied


Taken from Occupy Gezi’s Facebook page.
To my friends who live outside of Turkey:

I am writing to let you know what is going on in Istanbul for the last five days. I personally have to write this because most of the media sources are shut down by the government and word of mouth and the internet are the only ways left for us to explain ourselves and call for help and support.

Four days ago a group of people who did not belong to any specific organization or ideology got together in Istanbul's Gezi Park. Among them there were many of my friends and students. Their reason was simple: To prevent and protest the upcoming demolishing of the park for the sake of building yet another shopping mall at very center of the city. There are numerous shopping malls in Istanbul, at least one in every neighborhood! The tearing down of the trees was supposed to begin early Thursday morning. People went to the park with their blankets, books and children. They put their tents down and spent the night under the trees. Early in the morning when the bulldozers started to pull the hundred-year-old trees out of the ground, they stood up against them to stop the operation.

They did nothing other than standing in front of the machines.

© Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images
Taksim Square is now Occupied: Istanbul, on Sunday.

Heart - Black

Murder of April Jones proves porn link to sexual assaults

© PA

Bridger’s laptop computer contained a cache of images of children being raped and abused
As Mark Bridger was jailed for life for the abduction and murder of five-year-old April Jones, the NSPCC said there was a "worrying link" between his looking at indecent images online and the crime he went on to commit.

It called for "effective measures" to curb the ease with which extreme pornography and indecent images of children can be accessed.

Bridger's laptop computer contained a cache of images of children being raped and abused. Police found a horror film in his video recorder paused at a violent rape.

Earlier this month, Stuart Hazell was jailed for the murder of Tia Sharpe, his partner's 12-year-old-granddaughter. During his trial the Old Bailey heard that he had used his computer to search for terms including "violent forced rape" and "incest".

Bridger, like Hazell, had no previous convictions for sexual offences. Both went from viewing indecent images straight to the worst class of offending. With no gradual escalation in behaviour, there was nothing to suggested they were a threat to children and to alert police.


4 die when 2 small planes collide midair near Phoenix

Four adults died Friday morning after two single-engine planes collided above a remote desert area in north Phoenix, authorities said.

The identities were not released pending notification of family members.

"This is a tragic event," Phoenix police spokesman Steve Martos said at the scene. "It could have been much worse and be in a congested area where people reside."

Martos said planes frequently fly in the area because of the open airspace.

A pilot reported seeing the two small aircraft collide in midair about 15 miles northwest of Deer Valley Airport, spokesman Ian Gregor of the Federal Aviation Administration said.

Numerous 911 calls about the midair crash came in around 10 a.m., authorities said.

Fire crews went to the area and found the two planes. One plane, believed to be a Cessna, caught fire upon impact and was "unrecognizable," according to Capt. Dave Wilson of the Daisy Mountain Fire Department.

He said the plane contained two people, whose gender could not be determined at the scene, because the bodies were burnt.

Identification of these two victims will be made by the Medical Examiners Office, Martos said.

Martos said the identities of the two men in the other aircraft are known but the family has yet to be notified.

Wilson said the other aircraft, a Piper Archer III, appeared to have made a rough landing and was mostly intact. It was about 100 yards from the other plane with the two victims inside, he said.

"I thought possibly we might have survivors," said battalion Chief Gary Bernard of the Peoria Fire Department.

Dollar Gold

Wealth of most Americans down 55% since recession

© iStockphoto
Increasing housing prices and the stock market''s posting all-time highs haven't helped the plight most Americans. The average U.S. household has recovered only 45 percent of the wealth they lost during the recession, according to a report released yesterday from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

This finding is a very different picture than one painted in a report earlier this year by the Fed that calculated Americans as a whole had regained 91 percent of their losses. The writers of the report released yesterday point out that the earlier number is based on aggregate household-net-worth data. However, this isn't adjusted for inflation, population growth or the nature of the wealth. Further, they say much of recovery in net worth is because of the stock market, which means most of the improvement has been a boon only to wealthy families.

"Clearly, the 91 percent recovery of wealth losses portrayed by the aggregate nominal measure paints a different picture than the 45 percent recovery of wealth losses indicated by the average inflation-adjusted household measure," the report said. "Considering the uneven recovery of wealth across households, a conclusion that the financial damage of the crisis and recession largely has been repaired is not justified," the researchers said.

Household wealth plunged $16 trillion from the top of the real estate bubble in the third quarter of 2007 to the bottom of the bust in the first quarter of 2009. By the last three months of 2012, American households as a group had regained $14.7 trillion.

The report says almost two-thirds of the increase in aggregate household wealth is due to rising stock prices. This has disproportionately benefited the richest households: About 80 percent of stocks are held by the wealthiest 10 percent of the population.


Gun violence rocks Chicago as 8 are shot in one day

The level of gun violence in Chicago, which has caused shock waves nationally, is continuing with eight people having been shot in the nation's third largest city in a 24-hour period that ended Friday morning, including one that ended with the death of a 15-year-old boy.

Chicago police said that the teenager, Patrick Sykes, was shot several times early Thursday afternoon. They said that witnesses offered conflicting versions of what occurred, with the shooters having been either on bicycles or on foot.

Two people were taken into custody for questioning, but they were released without any charges being filed, police said.

The 24-hour period of gun violence also included the shooting of an 18-year-old man, three women and several others.

The high level of violence in the month of May came shortly after the Chicago Police Department announced that crime in the city fell 8 percent in the first quarter of 2013, compared with the same period last year, and 15 percent from the same period of 2011.

Still, there are great concerns about violent crime in Chicago, where Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old honor student, who performed at President Obama's inauguration, was killed by a bullet while standing in a South Side playground.


Man in Waco, Texas, gets 50 years in prison for stealing a $35 rack of ribs

Willie Smith Ward had five previous felonies and four convictions for misdemeanours

A habitual offender may have committed his final felony, after a jury sentenced him to 50 years for stealing a rack of ribs from a shop.

Willie Smith Ward, 43, attempted to steal the $35 large rack of ribs at the H-E-B store in Waco, Texas, by smuggling it underneath his shirt. Ward was then apprehended in the car park by a shopping assistant, who noticed the bulge and tried to stop him leaving.

According to the Waco Tribune-Herald, his act of theft was heightened to robbery when he threatened the employee by telling him he was in possession of a knife. According to the employee's testimony, he added: "If you don't leave me alone, I'll show you what I got," before running off. He was later arrested.

A jury in Waco's 19th State District Court took just two minutes to convict Ward for robbery and an hour to recommend a sentence. Ward already had five previous felonies and four convictions for misdemeanours. His previous convictions have been for crimes including burglary, attempted robbery, aggravated assault, leaving the scene of an accident and possession of cocaine.

Assistant District Attorney J.R. Vicha, prosecuting, told Ward: "This verdict shows that the citizens of this county will not tolerate a continued disrespect and disregard for other people and their property. People who choose to do so will be dealt with seriously and appropriately."

He will have to serve at least a quarter of his sentence before being eligible for parole. He allegedly rejected a 20-year prison sentence in a plea bargain before the trial.

Arrow Down

'Vile' slaughter of ducklings in park sparks outrage

People's Park Lake
© Jon Corken
It could happen again: The lake at People's Park, where a number of ducklings were attacked by youths.
A huge public reaction has erupted over the "vile" and "disgusting" slaughter of ducklings in People's Park - and it may not be an isolated incident.

The RSPCA has launched an investigation after eyewitnesses saw youths smash duck eggs, throw birds to one another and even drop-kick a duckling.

They are also investigating claims that some ducklings were stomped on and that a live bird was posted through the letterbox of a resident living near the park.

The story, published on yesterday's front page, has sparked public outrage, with many claiming both the children and their parents should be severely punished.

And one man contacted the Telegraph to say that he had a duckling posted through his door three weeks before these incidents - proving it has happened before and could happen again.

The Patrick Street resident - who did not want to be named for fear of repercussions - said that afterwards, the children even had the nerve to knock on his door again and ask for it back so they could continue their cruel game.

Arrow Down

Five-alarm blaze in SW Houston kills four firefighters

© Cody Duty, Houston Chronicle / © 2013 Houston Chronicle
Smoke from a 4-alarm blaze at the Southwest Inn on Hornwood drifts over motorists traveling the inbound lane of 59, Friday, May 31, 2013, in Houston. Four firefighters were transported in critical condition, and one was with a knee injury.
Four firefighters died in a five-alarm blaze that broke out at a restaurant Friday afternoon along U.S. 59 in southwest Houston, according to the mayor's office.

The Fire Department released a statement on Friday evening identifying the fallen firefighters:

Capt. EMT Matthew Renaud, 35, of Station 51; EMT Robert Bebee, 41, of Station 51; EMT Robert Garner, 29, of Station 68; and Fire Station 68's Anne Sullivan, 24, a recent graduate of the Houston Fire Department Academy.

"The Houston Fire Department has never seen four firefighters pass away from the same incident in the history of the department," the statement says. "Our deepest thoughts and prayers are with not only those friends and family of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice today but also those who were injured and all members of our department."

Five firefighters were also reported injured, two critically, while fighting the blaze that broke out about 12:09 p.m. at Bhojan Restaurant at 6855 Southwest Freeway. It engulfed the neighboring Southwest Inn along the Southwest Freeway near Hornwood, according to the Houston Fire Department. The flames also burned a sports bar and disco.