Headlines » Hearsay http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines The latest Headlines, news and blog posts from ABC News contributors and bloggers. Sat, 12 Jul 2014 15:25:55 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.2.1 Miss Universe Accused of Faking Documents for Pageant http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2011/09/miss-universe-accused-of-faking-documents-for-pageant/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2011/09/miss-universe-accused-of-faking-documents-for-pageant/#comments Fri, 16 Sep 2011 15:32:23 +0000 Colleen Curry http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/?p=37861 ap miss angola wm dm 110913 wblog Miss Universe Accused of Faking Documents for Pageant

Miss Angola Leila Lopes, left, is crowned Miss Universe 2011 by Miss Universe 2010 Ximena Navarrete, of Mexico, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sept. 12, 2011.

New allegations against the winner of the Miss Universe competition claim that Miss Angola, Leila Lopes, falsified documents to enter and win a qualifying contest in England.

The Argentinian newspaper Infobae published a report Thursday alleging that Lopes was unfairly allowed to participate in a Miss Angola competition for Angolan citizens living in the UK, even though she has never lived outside of Angola.

The report claimed that a man named Charles Mukano helped falsify documents identifying Lopes as a student of business management at a British school, enabling her to enter and win the contest there. Infobae cites reports in Angolan media that allege that Mukano may have even bribed judges in England to ensure Lopes’s win.

The Miss Universe pageant said they will comment on the matter sometime today.

Lopes was the first Miss Universe from her country, but came under attack in the following days by Miss France and fans of Miss Phillipines as undeserving of the crown.



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“Bling Ring” Member Released From Jail http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/07/bling-ring-member-released-from-jail/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/07/bling-ring-member-released-from-jail/#comments Mon, 26 Jul 2010 19:33:27 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/07/bling-ring-member-released-from-jail/ ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

A member of the alleged “Bling-Ring” posse has been released from jail 5 months early.  Reality show starlet Alexis Neiers was released from the Century Regional Detention Center in Lynwood at 6:41 p.m. Friday night according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. 

Neiers received three years felony probation and an obligation to pay a portion of the restitution which is undetermined. 

Neiers, 18, who stars in the E! reality show “Pretty Wild”pleaded no contest to a felony residential burglary charge on June 24 resulting from a break-in at the home of "Pirates of the Caribbean" star Orlando Bloom. She agreed to a plea deal after Bloom was scheduled to testify against her.  She was sentenced to a six month jail term but only served 30 days of that sentence.

Neiers and three others were allegedly caught on a surveillance camera last summer breaking into Bloom’s home and stealing several handbags according to detectives.   Alleged members of the “Bling Ring” group are also accused of breaking into several other celebrity homes including Paris Hilton, Audrina Patridge, and Rachel Bilson making off with thousands of dollars in cash and jewelry.  The rest of the group including Nick Prugo, Rachel Lee, Courtney Lee Ames, Roy Lopez Jr. and Diana Tamayo were indicted earlier this month and have all plead not guilty to conspiracy charges.  The group may go on trial in November.

In a statement released Friday night, Neiers said, "I've had time to reflect on my life and the choices that led me to this experience, left alone in my cell 23 hours a day and having everything stripped away but the bare essentials. I did a lot of soul searching. I feel very humbled and see my life in a way that I have come to be very grateful for and I am also grateful to everyone who has helped and supported me through this."

Ironically, Neiers was serving her sentence in the same facility as actress Lindsay Lohan, who was sentenced to 90 days as a result from violating her DUI probation. 

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Text Message Sent Before Murder-Suicide http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/text-message-sent-before-murdersuicide/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/text-message-sent-before-murdersuicide/#comments Thu, 24 Jun 2010 19:00:22 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/text-message-sent-before-murdersuicide/ ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

An eerie text message saved the lives of two children shortly before their father killed the mother, and then shot himself.

Authorities say that someone sent the baby sitter a text message saying “Come get the kids right away.  I don’t want them to see what happens next” before he shot his wife, Danielle, and then turned the gun on himself in the couple’s Kansas home. 

It’s not clear whether the text was sent by an angry father or a fearful mother.

The baby sitter acted quickly and took the two children out of the home before gun fire erupted.

Neighbors told the local news channel KCTV5 that the couple had a rocky relationship and that police had been to their home just a few weeks ago because one of the parents was concerned the other was going to take the children and not return.

In addition, police may have new clues in a Facebook message posted on Danielle’s page on June 2 that said "I missing being a little kid, because there was never any drama, fights and the only man in your life was your Daddy."

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Amanda Knox’s Request for Different Judge Shot Down http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/amanda-knoxs-request-for-different-judge-shot-down/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/amanda-knoxs-request-for-different-judge-shot-down/#comments Wed, 23 Jun 2010 16:46:49 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/amanda-knoxs-request-for-different-judge-shot-down/ ABC News' Ann Wise reports:

Amanda Knox’s  request to have her preliminary hearing on slander charges heard by a different judge was turned down by the Appeals Court in Perugia, Italy, today.  

Knox’s lawyers had requested that judge Claudia Matteini step aside because she had already made a judgment about Knox when she confirmed her arrest for murder in November 2007, days after the body of Knox’s roomate Meredith Kercher was found in a pool of blood in the apartment the girls shared. Knox has been in a Italian jail ever since. 

Matteini did not step aside, and last week Knox’s lawyers filed a formal to have her replaced.

Knox appeared briefly in court for the June 17 hearing, and made a quick statement. Her lawyers told the ANSA news agency that, in reference to the slander accusation, Knox said “I only wanted to defend myself. I am sorry it has come to this.”

Knox faces slander charges in response to statements she made during her murder trial last year in which she accused the police of hitting her on the back of her head during one of her interrogations in the police station  in the days after the murder.  During Knox’s trial police testified that they had treated Knox well, and denied hitting her.

Knox’s lawyers told ANSA that they are debating whether to take today’s decision to Italy’s top Cassation Court.

In December of last year Knox was convicted to 26 years in prison for Kercher’s death along with her former boyfriend  Raffaele Sollecito, who is serving 25 years.  A third person, Rudy Guede, was also convicted of the crime in a separate trial.  His 30-year sentence was reduced to 16 on appeal.

Knox has appealed her conviction for murder and a judge and the date for the Appeals trial is expected to be announced soon.  
The preliminary hearing  is scheduled to begin on Oct. 1.

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Prosecutors in Casey Anthony Case: Jury Should Hear 911 Calls http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/prosecutors-in-casey-anthony-case-jury-should-hear-911-calls/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/prosecutors-in-casey-anthony-case-jury-should-hear-911-calls/#comments Thu, 10 Jun 2010 16:17:43 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/06/prosecutors-in-casey-anthony-case-jury-should-hear-911-calls/ ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

Prosecutors in the Casey Anthony case argued Wednesday that the jury should hear 911 calls made by Anthony’s mother in July 2008.

In a nine-page filing, the prosecutor argues that the 911 calls made by Cindy Anthony help show the progression of stories Casey Anthony told to explain the disappearance of her daughter Caylee. 

However, Anthony’s legal team contends that the 911 calls amount to hearsay and should be kept out of her the trial that is scheduled for 2011.

Cindy Anthony’s first 911 call took place on July 15, 2008.  She reported her daughter for a stolen car.  In the second call she states that her grandchild has been missing for a month. 

During the third call, Cindy breaks down to tears.  “I found my daughter’s car today and it smells like there’s been a dead body in the damn car.”

The calls show how "the defendant 'created' the kidnapping story after denying there was any problem locating Caylee Marie Anthony," Assistant State Attorney Linda Drane Burdick states. "These fabrications demonstrate consciousness of guilt on the part of the defendant.”

Anthony’s defense team argued that the 911 calls should be excluded because they are “testimonial” and because it is a capital case, “unreliable hearsay evidence must be excluded.”

Anthony has pleaded not guilty against the charges of killing her 2-year-old, whose remains were found in woods in December 2008, months after her disappearance and the 911 calls. 

Chief Judge Belvin Perry Jr. said he would rule on the hearsay issue later on in the case.

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Drew Peterson Sells His Motorcycle on Ebay http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/drew-peterson-sells-his-motorcycle-on-ebay/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/drew-peterson-sells-his-motorcycle-on-ebay/#comments Thu, 13 May 2010 19:22:28 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/drew-peterson-sells-his-motorcycle-on-ebay/ ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

If you’re in the market for a new motorcycle, murder suspect Drew Peterson may have what you are looking for.

Peterson is selling his 2007 Harley Davidson Softail on ebay with the starting bid at $50,000.   

The ad reads:  "This is the actual bike owned by Drew Peterson and is now being sold in 'as is' condition.   This motorcycle is 100% authentic and is being stored in the Chicago area.  Serious inquiries only."

Peterson was charged in 2009 with the death of his third wife, Kathleen Savio.  Police have also named him an “official suspect” in the 2007 disappearance of his fourth wife, Stacy Peterson.  He is jailed on a $20 million bail.

Peterson has entered a not guilty plea and has denied any involvement in Savio's death or Stacy Peterson's disappearance.

“This is the world of ‘murderabilia.,’” Andy Kahn, a Houston Crime Advocate told ABC News. 

“Lately this is a trend.  Distasteful as it may seem, it is not illegal.  Like it or not, Drew Peterson is innocent until proven guilty, so his motorcycle is fair game.  The key word is 'suspect.'  Notoriety for profit and Son of Sam laws don't kick in unless he convicted," said Kahn.

A 2007 Harley Davidson Softail is valued between $11,000 and $18,000 according to The Kelly Blue Book. 
“The fact that Peterson is selling the bike for $50,000 and that he tries to profit from this just reaffirms his true narcissistic psyche,” said Kahn.  “I’d be shocked if someone bought it at that price,” he continued.

It's almost the exact amount that attorneys for Peterson cost according to a court filing last week, that is needed for his June trial. However his trial attorney, Joel Brodsky, said legal expenses weren't the main factor in putting the 2007 Softail up for sale.

The auction listing, which was updated May 11, is scheduled to run until May 13.

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The “Geezer Bandit” Strikes Again! http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-geezer-bandit-strikes-again/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-geezer-bandit-strikes-again/#comments Wed, 12 May 2010 18:46:47 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-geezer-bandit-strikes-again/ ABC News':  Brennan McCord reports:

Well folks, he’s done it again.  Authorities say the serial robber known as the “Geezer Bandit” struck for the ninth time on Tuesday, robbing a Bank of America in Santee, California around 9:45am. 

The man, believed to be in his 60’s or 70’s, walked up to the teller, pulled out a revolver and presented a note demanding cash, according to the FBI.

Witnesses said he has thin plastic tubes in his nose like those used to administer medicinal oxygen and wore a tan baseball cap, sunglasses, and a dark blazer and zip-up sweater.

 “All the departments are talking about it.  We are trying to find him,” a representative from the San Diego Police Media Relations Department for the city government told ABC News. 

They aren’t the only ones talking about the bandit.  There are two Facebook pages full of pictures, videos, and online articles about him.  Between the two pages he has over 400 fans who have posted comments such as “Git them banks!! they had it comin” and “Go Geezer!”

The San Diego Police Department is looking into who has created these Facebook pages and if they could have been created by the geezer himself.
Police believe that this is the same man who has robbed eight other banks in La Jolla, Rancho Santa Fe,

San Diego and Santee since August.

Anyone with information is asked to call the FBI at (858) 565-1255 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477. Callers to Crime Stoppers can remain anonymous.

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Sex, Drugs, and Library Fines http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/sex-drugs-and-library-fines/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/sex-drugs-and-library-fines/#comments Fri, 07 May 2010 17:05:45 +0000 Brennan McCord http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/sex-drugs-and-library-fines/ ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

Sex, drugs, and…library fines. 

These elements all come together for Longwood parent, Tina Harden as she was so disturbed by the sex, drugs, and foul language in Gossip Girl book series that she is had been ignoring the over-due notices and phone calls from her local library and its bill collector.

Harden finally returned the books on Friday.

In 2008 Harden’s daughter, then 13, checked out the books and after flipping through the pages, Harden was astonished by the adult content in a book series designed for young teens. 

Harden refused to return the books until the library put warning labels on the books in the Gossip Girl series and also on the books in a spin-off series called It Girl.  She also wants to make the book unavailable to minors.

"The whole book was filled with everything I don't want my daughter to do or be," she said.

The library refused to label the books with warnings, but has agreed to re-shelve the books to the adult-reading sections.

"When a library classifies a book as young adult, I expect those books to have young adult content, especially these books that are geared toward young girls.  There are multiple references to illegal drugs, sex, and foul language," Harden told ABC News.

"If I turn them in, they will be put back into circulation and they'll be available for more young girls to read," said the mother of three, who keeps the four books hidden in a closet.

"I am not a book burner, I love the library.  But we are tax-paying citizens and the library is funded by the public.  What troubles me is that the librarians are the only ones who have a say as to what goes on their shelves and where," Harden told ABC News.

Sabrina O’Bryan, assistant county manager at the library told ABC News that the library is simply following the library’s Bill of Rights. 

Article III of the Library’s Bill of Rights states:  “Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.”

"If we denied access to this particular title, it would be censoring," said Jane Peterson, the county's library services manager.

The library has also pointed out that book series is popular among teens and it has an obligation to stock the books that are in high demand. 

Harden still owes the library 85 dollars in late fees.  She is hoping that the library will waive the fines.
Peterson said the library system could not forgive the fines, but she was glad the books had been returned.

"I'm pleased that the library has received support, and I'm pleased to have the books back," she said.
Harden says she is not alone in the effort to organize books in a more age appropriate manner in the libraries. 

“I have heard from many mothers who are concerned about the same thing and want things to change.  We just want our kids to be safe.”


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Statement from Michael Spitzer Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs University of Bridgeport http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/statement-from-michael-spitzer-provost-and-vice-president-for-academic-affairs-university-of-bridgep/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/statement-from-michael-spitzer-provost-and-vice-president-for-academic-affairs-university-of-bridgep/#comments Tue, 04 May 2010 16:53:18 +0000 Cleopatra Andreadis http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/statement-from-michael-spitzer-provost-and-vice-president-for-academic-affairs-university-of-bridgep/ ABC News’ Sharaf Mowjood reports:

"The recent attempted car bombing incident in New York City has consumed a great deal of public attention. I am writing to share some information, we believe to be of marginal significance, in order to prevent misunderstanding through misinformation or rumor.

Faisal Shahzad, the person arrested in connection with the failed Times Square bomb plot, was a former student at the University of Bridgeport. He earned a BS degree in Computer Applications and Information Systems (CAIS) in the fall of 2000. He returned to UB and graduated with an MBA in the summer of 2005.

The university abhors acts of violence and terrorism. We work to combat racial and ethnic prejudices and animosity, and believe that education in an international context is the key to understanding the values and beliefs of people from other cultures.

We have informed relevant U.S. Government authorities of Mr. Shahzad’s prior enrollment at the university."

Shahzad has been arrested for allegedly driving a car bomb into Times Square on the evening of May 1, 201 and is set to appear in a Manhattan City Court tomorrow to be presented with formal charges.

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The Education of an Alleged ‘Terrorist’ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-education-of-an-alleged-terrorist/ http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-education-of-an-alleged-terrorist/#comments Tue, 04 May 2010 16:35:51 +0000 Cleopatra Andreadis http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2010/05/the-education-of-an-alleged-terrorist/ ABC News’ Chris Cuomo reports:

ABC News has reviewed an employment document apparently filled out by Faisal Shahzad, the alleged suspect in the times square bomb plot

In imperfect English, the application lists primary education in Saudi Arabia, at the "jaddah ambasi school" in 1985.

Then from 1986-1998 the form lists schooling in various major areas of Pakistan, including his birthplace of Karachi, Punjab, Peshawar and Islamabad.

Two different American colleges are listed: Southeastern University in Washington, DC, and The University of Bridgeport.  He also writes that he applied to the "University of Auston (Taxes)" – probably meaning, "Austin (Texas)" The document also lists a 530 on a  TOEFL exam (English literacy).

Click here to see a copy of the document.

Independently, ABC News has learned Shahzad received and MBA degree in the summer of 2005 from the University of Bridgeport.

We are currently reviewing other documents that may reveal additional financial and background information.

Click here to see another image.

Shahzad has been arrested for allegedly driving a car bomb into Times Square on the evening of May 1, 201 and is set to appear in a Manhattan City Court tomorrow to be presented with formal charges.

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