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New York police officer indicted in Akai Gurley shooting

Feb. 11, 2015 - A rookie police officer who fired into a darkened stairwell at a Brooklyn public housing complex, accidentally killing a man who had been waiting for an elevator, has been indicted in the death, a lawyer Tuesday.

Officer Peter Liang will appear in court Wednesday in the shooting death of 28-year-old Akai Gurley, according to Scott Rynecki, an attorney representing Gurley’s family. The charges against Liang weren’t immediately clear.

“This is the first step for justice,” Rynecki said. Read more at

Category: General


How Whitney Houston’s death led Gabrielle Union to ‘Being Mary Jane’

Feb. 11, 2015 - Gabrielle Union says she learned an important lesson after the death of Whitney Houston.

“It just kind of made everyone say, ‘What do you want your legacy to be?'” Union said in a recent interview. “And I really doubled down on ‘I only want to do things that I care about, that mean something.’

“So, no, I don’t want to play perfect characters that are wholesome role models … and have all the right answers.” Read more at

Category: General


NC Teen Walks Into Target Looking for a Tie, and This Happens

Feb. 11, 2015 - On Monday, Raleigh, N.C., teen Yasir Moore ran into his local Target in a rush. He had an upcoming job interview at a Chick-fil-A restaurant, and he needed a tie. He was already dressed in his suit, and since he didn’t know how to tie a regular tie, he asked Target employees Cathy Scott and Dennis Roberts for a clip-on one. Read more at

Category: General


Update: Bobby Kristina Brown’s Aunt Says She’s “Doing Well,” Says She Believes Nick Gordon Will Be Charged

Feb. 11, 2015 - On the third anniversary of the death of pop icon Whitney Houston, mother to Bobbi Kristina Brown, the heavens have parted for a bit of good news coming from the Brown/Houston camp.

In an exclusive interview with Fox 5 Atlanta, Bobbi Kristina’s aunt Leolah Brown, confirmed that doctors say that Bobbi Kris is “doing better,” a pointed rebuke to numerous reports that surfaced yesterday saying the family was going to remove her from life support today. Read more at

Category: General


John Legend Disagreed With Kanye West's Comments About Beck

Feb. 11, 2015 - While John Legend found Kanye West's near interruption of Beck's Album of the Year speech "funny," the 36-year-old singer was not as amused by West's comments following the Grammys broadcast.

"When I said that was funny and people should lighten up about it, that's what I meant," Legend wrote on Instagram. "I wasn't referring to Kanye's comments after the show which I have now seen and heard. I disagree with those comments." Read more at

Category: General


Black Leaders Call On Steve Scalise To Apologize On The House Floor

Feb. 11, 2015 - Two prominent black leaders made a personal plea to House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) at the Capitol Tuesday: Give a speech on the House floor apologizing for speaking to a white supremacist group and repudiating “David Duke-type racist and divisive rhetoric and politics.” Read more at

Category: General


Hillsborough School Board knows superintendent search closely scrutinized

February 10, 2015 - The Hillsborough County School board is acutely aware of the scrutiny it is under as it begins the process of finding a new superintendent.

At a school board workshop on Tuesday, board members debated for more than two hours sharing their philosophies about how to conduct a search and specifically how to engage community input.  Read more at

Category: General


Valentine’s Day Group Wedding Ceremony at the Florida Botanical Gardens

Sixty-eight couples have signed up to be joined together in matrimony on Valentine’s Day, Saturday, February 14th in the picturesque Wedding Garden of the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo. The 9th annual Valentine’s Day Group wedding event, organized by Ken Burke, Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller, is open to the public as love is recognized and celebrated on this very special day.

Couples must have applied for their marriage licenses by Tuesday, February 10th in order to participate in the Valentine’s Day group wedding. The Clerk has waived the usual $30 fee to perform the marriage ceremony. All other standard marriage license fees apply.

The ceremony will take place at 11:00 a.m. in the Wedding Garden of the Florida Botanical Gardens located at 12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo, FL 33774. On this day, couples will receive a special Commemorative Marriage Certificate. All couples should arrive at the Botanical Gardens by 10:00 a.m. on the day of the event with their marriage license and identification.

A single ceremony will unite all couples in attendance. The couples will be treated to a beautiful poem written by Myriam Irizarry, Chief Deputy Director and General Counsel at the Clerk’s Office and serenaded with a cappella melodies performed by the Charmonizers Barbershop Quartet. Two Deputy Clerks, Linda Brian and Tiffany Glenn, will also perform their solos. The couples and their guests will celebrate with wedding cake and refreshments provided by local sponsors.

Category: General


Gang leader who impregnated four prison guards gets reduced sentence

Feb. 10, 2015 - Tavon White used to run his Baltimore jail. He later testified to the vast network of smuggling drugs and cell phones that he and other gang members had been part of, and both a federal judge and prosecutor praised him for his work on the case.

In a scandal that has lasted over two years and has seen 35 different defendants plead guilty to involvement in the scheme, White described how the Black Guerrilla Family gang ran a smuggling operation inside the prison itself. White has even fathered four children with corrections officers during his time there. Read more at

Category: General


Oprah selects Cynthia Bond’s novel ‘Ruby’ for book club

Feb. 10, 2015 - From the very first sentence, Oprah Winfrey loved what became her latest book club pick.

“I thought, ‘Wow, this is so good I have to wait until I actually have the time to absorb the language,'” said Winfrey, during a recent telephone interview with The Associated Press, of Cynthia Bond’s novel “Ruby.” Read more at

Category: General


Parents say police pointed their guns at 6-year-old son with special needs

Feb. 10, 2015 - Ridgeland Police in Mississippi showed up at Paul and Angela Thompson Roby’s home looking for Angela’s brother Carneigio Gray.

Once police found him and began to arrest Gray on contempt charges, the Roby’s six-year-old son pleaded for officers not to hurt his uncle. Read more at

Category: General


4-year-old girl receives life-saving transplant from older sister

Feb. 10, 2015 - A young Atlanta girl is expected to fully recover after receiving a life-saving bone marrow transplant.

Four-year-old Angelique Walker was diagnosed with sickle cell anemia shortly after she was born. Walker has been in and out of the hospital since then, and her family and doctors recently decided that a transplant would be their best option. Read more at

Category: General


Newark Selling Couples Vacant City Lots for $1,000 on Valentine’s Day

Feb. 10, 2015 - The city of Newark, N.J., has a special treat for couples of all orientations this Valentine’s Day weekend, with a plan to sell city-owned lots as homesteads for just $1,000, according to a press release.

Mayor Ras J. Baraka, the Newark Municipal Council and Baye Adofo-Wilson, deputy mayor for economic development, announced the sale of the lots Monday. The sale will take place at Newark City Hall from 9 a.m. to midday on Valentine’s Day. Read more at

Category: General


Huckabee Blasts Obama for Noting That Islam Isn’t the Only Religion With Terrorists

Feb. 10, 2015 - Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor and candidate in the 2012 Republican presidential primaries, is blasting President Barack Obama yet again, but this time it’s not about how the president lets daughters Malia and Sasha listen to Beyoncé’s music. This time it’s about Obama’s recent remarks in which the president reminded people that Islam is not the only religion with extremists who have carried out great atrocities against humanity, the New York Daily Newsreports. Read more at

Category: General


Former Running Back Jamal Lewis’ Super Bowl Ring Auctioned

Feb. 10, 2015 - A Super Bowl XLVII ring that the Baltimore Ravens’ Stephen Bisciotti gave to former running back Jamal Lewis was sold off in an auction Sunday morning, ESPN reports.

The ring, from the Ravens’ 2013 win against the San Francisco 49ers, which Lewis did not participate in, was one of those given out to former Ravens superstars who were welcomed into the team’s ring of honor in 2012, the sports site notes. Read more at

Category: General


174-room Hyatt hotel planned for downtown St. Petersburg

Feb. 10, 2015 - In another sign of downtown St. Petersburg's soaring popularity, a 174-room Hyatt hotel will be part of a $200 million retail-condo project a few blocks from the waterfront.

Construction of the four-star hotel is expected to start next spring and be finished in the fall of 2017, Bobby Julien, CEO of the Kolter Group, said Friday. Read more at

Category: General


Kendrick Lamar Drops Blistering New Track, 'The Blacker The Berry'

Feb. 10, 2015 - Fresh off two Grammy wins for Best Rap Song and Best Rap Performance, Kendrick Lamar dropped a new song, "The Blacker The Berry." Produced by Boi-1da, it's most likely to appear on his forthcoming studio album along with "i," his Grammy-winning 2014 single. Read more at

Category: General



Feb. 10, 2015 - The civil rights drama "Selma" won top honors at the NAACP Image Awards in a ceremony that took sharp notice of snubs of African-American artists and their work by the Oscars.

"This is more than a movie," Oprah Winfrey, who was a "Selma" producer and appeared in it, said Friday in accepting the trophy for outstanding motion picture. "It's important that we all know who we are so we know where we're going, and claiming the glory." Read more at

Category: General


Samuel L. Jackson Talks Childhood And Growing Up During Segregation

Feb. 10, 2015 - There's a never a dull moment with Samuel L. Jackson and the award-winning actor proved that yet again during his appearance on Monday's episode of "Live! With Kelly and Michael" where things got really personal.

Jackson, who is promoting his latest film “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” took a few moments to reflect on some of his childhood memories and what life was like growing up in Chattanooga, Tennessee during the 1950s. Read more at

Category: General


Why the CBC should boycott Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech

Feb. 9, 2015 - At the invitation of House Speaker John Boehner, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu is giving a speech before a joint session of Congress in March.  And he’s doing it because he and Boehner want to undermine President Obama and make him look bad.  So far, two members of the Congressional Black Caucus—veteran civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) and CBC chairman G. K. Butterfield (D-N.C.) have announced they will not attend the speech. Read more at

Category: General