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Letters to the Editor for August 23, 2017

Bail reform is needed

To the Editor:

At a time when our country seems to be more divided than ever, it is refreshing to see a bipartisan effort to jump-start bail reform at the federal level.

But Senators Kamala Harris and Rand Paul aren’t the only policymakers reaching across the aisle on bail reform. Here in California, Republican state Senator Joel Anderson joined Democrats to help pass bail reform legislation at the state level.

There’s a reason policymakers on both sides of the aisle are championing bail reform: it’s not just morally the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.

Like the Pretrial Integrity and Safety

Read more at: http://www.uniondemocrat.com/opinion/letterstotheeditor/5537781-151/letters-to-the-editor-for-august-23-2017

Pontiac man arrested for threats of mass shooting, bombs, so…

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – A 23-year-old Pontiac man was arrested Friday for threatening a mass shooting and calling in bomb threats to close an Auburn Hills business so he didn’t have to work, police said.

Investigators were called Aug. 11 to Dana Corporation in Auburn Hills after bomb threats were made. Dana Corporation closed its business temporarily during the investigation.

Police investigated another incident at 9:41 a.m. Friday, when a mass shooting was threatened over the phone. Threats were also made to other businesses in the area.

Investigators said Williams was responsible for calling in the bomb and mass shooting threats. He was a temporary employee of Dana Corporation and had only been working there for a few days, police said.

Williams was arrested Friday evening at a home in Pontiac.

Police said Williams admitted to making both threats so that work would be canceled for the day. There’s no indication that Williams intended to

Read more at: https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/pontiac-man-arrested-for-threats-of-mass-shooting-bombs-so-work-would-be-canceled

Pontiac man arrested for threats of mass shooting, bombs, so work would be canceled

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – A 23-year-old Pontiac man was arrested Friday for threatening a mass shooting and calling in bomb threats to close an Auburn Hills business so he didn’t have to work, police said.

Investigators were called Aug. 11 to Dana Corporation in Auburn Hills after bomb threats were made. Dana Corporation closed its business temporarily during the investigation.

Police investigated another incident at 9:41 a.m. Friday, when a mass shooting was threatened over the phone. Threats were also made to other businesses in the area.

Investigators said Williams was responsible for calling in the bomb and mass shooting threats. He was a temporary employee of Dana Corporation and had only been working there for a few days, police said.

Williams was arrested Friday evening at a home in Pontiac.

Police said Williams admitted to making both threats so that work would be canceled for the day. There’s no indication that Williams intended to

Read more at: https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/pontiac-man-arrested-for-threats-of-mass-shooting-bombs-so-work-would-be-canceled

Colerain Twp. police chief makes bold statements about fatal shooting at party

Despite hearing what happened at 9917 Capstan Drive, Nicole Bracey values the years she spent living just a few blocks away.

“I love Colerain,” she said. “I love this area. It’s a great school district.”

Like others, Bracey was alarmed when detectives in Colerain Township said someone shot and killed Autum Garrett and injured eight others during what was initially called a gender-reveal party last month at the home on Capstan Drive.

Police now say there was no pending birth to celebrate.

On Monday, Colerain Police Chief Mark Denney issued a statement saying, “Investigators have found multiple connections between individuals attending the party and three different drug circles, which are now being investigated concurrently.”

Denney continued, “We expect a very long and thorough investigation that will result in multiple arrests… In no way has this investigation hit a dead-end or gone ‘cold.’ New information is learned daily and interviews continue

Read more at: http://www.wlwt.com/article/police-colerain-mass-shooting-victims-witnesses-tied-to-3-drug-circles/12048382

Police: Mass shooting at Colerain gender reveal party was targeted, related to drug rings

The story of a mass shooting at a gender-reveal party for a fake pregnancy only gets stranger. 

On Tuesday, Colerain Township Police announced that witnesses to the July shooting that killed a 22-year-old woman and injured nine others have connections to three different drug rings.

“Investigators keep running into the same people in every lead, and finding drug trafficking,” Police Chief Mark Denney told The Enquirer. “But there are no specific details that we can put out at this time.” 

The July 8 shooting on Capstan Drive was initially described to

Read more at: http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2017/08/22/police-mass-shooting-colerain-gender-reveal-party-targeted-related-drug-rings/590216001/

Police: Colerain Twp. mass shooting was targeted

A shooting at a gender reveal party that left a woman dead and eight people injured was targeted, Colerain Police said.

“All information points to the fact that this was a planned, targeted incident that was in no way random,” Colerain police said in a statement released Tuesday.

People at the party have been tied to drug rings, police said.

Nine people were shot – one fatally – at a gender reveal party on July 8 on Capstan Drive. Autumn Garrett was killed and several children were injured, police said.

Police released a statement Tuesday saying that witnesses have not cooperated with police in their investigation, omitting information or even lying about what happened that evening.

“Investigators have found multiple connections between individuals attending the party and three different drug circles, which are now being investigated concurrently,” Colerain Police Public Information Officer James Love wrote. “We expect

Read more at: http://www.wlwt.com/article/police-connect-colerain-mass-shooting-victims-witnesses-to-3-drug-rings/12048382

Accused Fresno killer ruled incompetent | The Fresno Bee

Two court-appointed doctors say confessed mass killer Kori Ali Muhammad is incompetent to stand trial in connection with an April shooting spree that left four dead, it was announced Tuesday.

One doctor hired by the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, however, said Muhammad is competent to stand trial.

The 2-1 vote typically means Muhammad would go to a state hospital until his competency is restored. But because it’s a high-profile case, the prosecution’s next move is unclear.

At a brief hearing, Superior Court Judge Brian Alvarez scheduled a hearing for Sept. 12 to go over the doctors’ reports.

Muhammad is charged with murder in the April 13 shooting death of a motel security guard Carl Allen Williams II. He also is charged with murder in an April 18 shooting rampage that killed Zackary David Randalls, 34, of Clovis; Mark James Gassett, 37,

Read more at: http://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/crime/article168621072.html

Confessed mass killer Kori Muhammad incompetent for trial, doctors …

Two court-appointed doctors say confessed mass killer Kori Ali Muhammad is incompetent to stand trial in connection with an April shooting spree that left four dead, it was announced Tuesday.

One doctor hired by the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, however, said Muhammad is competent to stand trial.

The 2-1 vote typically means Muhammad would go to a state hospital until his competency is restored. But because it’s a high-profile case, the prosecution’s next move is unclear.

At a brief hearing, Superior Court Judge Brian Alvarez scheduled a hearing for Sept. 12 to go over the doctors’ reports.

Muhammad is charged with murder in the April 13 shooting death of a motel security guard Carl Allen Williams II. He also is charged with murder in an April 18 shooting rampage that killed Zackary David Randalls, 34, of Clovis; Mark James Gassett, 37,

Read more at: http://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/crime/article168621072.html

Confessed mass killer Kori Muhammad incompetent for trial, doctors say

Two court-appointed doctors say confessed mass killer Kori Ali Muhammad is incompetent to stand trial in connection with an April shooting spree that left four dead, it was announced Tuesday.

One doctor hired by the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, however, said Muhammad is competent to stand trial.

The 2-1 vote typically means Muhammad would go to a state hospital until his competency is restored. But because it’s a high-profile case, the prosecution’s next move is unclear.

At a brief hearing, Superior Court Judge Brian Alvarez scheduled a hearing for Sept. 12 to go over the doctors’ reports.

Muhammad is charged with murder in the April 13 shooting death of a motel security guard Carl Allen Williams II. He also is charged with murder in an April 18 shooting rampage that killed Zackary David Randalls, 34, of Clovis; Mark James Gassett, 37,

Read more at: http://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/crime/article168621072.html

Mass killer spared death penalty over Calif. jail informant scandal …

SANTA ANA, Calif. — A Southern California mass killer will be spared the death penalty amid a long-running scandal over local authorities’ use of jailhouse informants, a judge decided Friday.

Judge Thomas M. Goethals said Scott Dekraai would not be sentenced to death after pleading guilty to killing eight people in a 2011 shooting rampage at an Orange County hair salon.

The ruling leaves only the possibility that Dekraai, 47, will be sentenced to life in prison.

It’s rare for a judge to bar prosecutors from seeking a death sentence. While acknowledging the “horrendous” nature of Dekraai’s crime, Goethals found that failures by the prosecution team would prevent a fair penalty phase of the trial.

Dekraai’s defense attorneys had argued that repeated failures by sheriff’s authorities to reveal records related to informants in the county jail show the agency can’t be trusted to turn over evidence that could favor their client.

Goethals noted authorities

Read more at: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/mass-killer-spared-death-penalty-over-calif-jail-informant-scandal/