Posts Tagged ‘Crime’

Breaking: John Wiley Price Arrested

Saturday, July 26th, 2014

Dallas County Commissioner and longtime influential Dallas black politician John Wiley Price has been arrested:

Price was under arrest, charged with eleven counts of bribery, mail fraud, and tax fraud.

His life, and his image, had permanently changed.

“All told, Commissioner Price took in more than $1.1 million that he did not report to the proper authorities,” said Sarah Saldana, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

“Mr. Price allegedly defrauded the citizens of Dallas County, the state of Texas, and the federal government,” said Diego Rodriguez, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Dallas.

Kathy Nealy, a Dallas political consultant and long-time associate of Price, was prominent in the indictment. The charges allege she paid Price to sway votes before the Dallas County Commissioners.

“At the same time, Ms. Nealy was paying bribes to Commissioner Price, she actively evaded nearly $600,000 in income tax, which she admittedly owes,” Saldana said.

Between them, Price and Nealy face 16 counts of bribery, mail and tax fraud.

The FBI has been investigating Price for more than three years.

Gun Roundup for July 15, 2014

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Been a while since I did a roundup on gun news, so here’s the latest, including an epic mugshot:

  • Home Invasion ProTip: Don’t try exchanging fire with deputies if all you have is a BB gun. And why would you assault a homeowner rather than the criminal who did your hair and makeup?

    What is that, some incompetent Wolverine/Rocket Raccoon combination cosplay?

    Evidently toy guns are something of a thing with him

  • Legal, schmegal: FDA arrest legal Washington State pot user for owning legal guns. “California and Washington, where medical marijuana has been legal for years, have the highest number of federal raids and prosecutions among the 23 states that allow use of medical marijuana.” Caveat toker… (Hat tip: Alphecca.)
  • What really happens when trained civilians use guns in self-defense. (Hat tip: KR Training.)
  • Nurse Bloomberg says those redneck freaks of Jesusland in Colorado who recalled two of his gun-control pushing darling are so poor and rural “I don’t think there’s roads.” This is no doubt a great surprise to the residents of Colorado Springs and Pueblo… (Hat tip: Alphecca.)
  • “The lesson here is that there are no Anti-Gun “Groups.” There is only one group. They are all the same people. No matter what name they have in their electronic letterhead, it’s the same very few people.”
  • It takes a pretty bold criminal to flag down police while carrying an AK-47. (Hat tip: Tam.)
  • Would-be robber flees naked gun owner in Georgetown. The jokes write themselves…
  • An example of situational awareness.
  • Rolling Stone does does piece on the rise of women’s shooting culture, and it’s actually not half bad. (Hat tip: KR Training.)
  • On the lamentably cancelled Fox postcyberpunk police procedural drama Almost Human, there was an episode about a rifle that fired tracking bullets. That show was set in 2048, but we might get it a lot sooner, as this video of in-flight guidance of a .50 BMG round shows.

    (Hat tip: Say Uncle.)

  • More Smith & Wesson gun porn from Dwight. Namely a revolver chambered in .45 ACP, which is not something you see every day…
  • Texas vs. California Update for July 3, 2014

    Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

    Enjoy Independence Day tomorrow. In the meantime, here’s another Texas vs. California roundup:

  • Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby wasn’t the only important Supreme Court case last year. The Harris vs. Quinn decision, invalidating mandatory union fees for home health care workers, could have a huge impact on SEIU in California. “where 400,000 state-paid in-home care workers are represented by the SEIU.”
  • Former CalPERS CEO to plead guilty to bribery and conspiracy charges.
  • At least 1,500 Bay Area employees have racked up $50,000 in yearly overtime. “A Monterey County jail guard who worked enough overtime to nearly triple his annual base pay to $264,000 last year.”
  • Wonder why San Bernardino is bankrupt?

    “San Bernardino, California, said that to exit bankruptcy it must terminate a union contract that pays an average annual salary of $190,000 to each of its top 40 firefighters,” according to an article in Bloomberg. That’s just salary. Firefighters receive the generous “3 percent at 50″ retirement package that allows them to retire with 90 percent of their final years’ pay at age 50. And there are lots of pension-spiking gimmicks and other benefits on top of that.

    “These cities are run for the benefit of those who work there. Public services are a side matter at best.”

  • Murrieta, California Protesters greet Obama Administration shipment of illegal aliens with protests, blocking them from being dumped in their community.
  • Judge strikes down Pacific Grove pension initiative.
  • Some bay-area California cities want to hike they local minimum wage. Hey, that won’t hurt businesses here in Texas, so knock yourselves out…
  • More on Toyota’s relocation to Texas, along with some tidbits on the Texas economy:

    Toyota’s move to Texas is a high-profile relocation, but Texas has been used to adding — and filling — new jobs at a superlative pace. The state added more than 1.9 million new jobs over the period from December 1999 to April 2014, more than 35 percent of the entire nation’s total for that 15-year period, noted Michael Cox, an economics professor at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. And Texas had an unemployment rate of just 5.1 percent in May, 16th-lowest in the United States.

    Meanwhile, Cox noted, Texas’s median wages are 28th-highest in the nation; and they rank 8th-highest after adjusting for taxes and prices. Texas schools rank 3rd, he said, after adjusting for variations in student demographics, a raw statistic which places Texas 28th in the nation.

    “We’re able to accomplish all this and more because the business environment in our state is largely competitive, and free markets solve problems,” Cox told me. “Texas is a meritocracy, where incentives still work to produce good results.”

  • “Six current and former members of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department were found guilty Tuesday of obstruction of justice.
  • Grand Jury:”Hey, you might want to consider a pension reform task force.” City of Napa: “Get stuffed.”
  • Santa Ana-based Corithhian Colleges could be headed for bankruptcy.
  • Texas is now home to more Fortune 1000 Companies than any other state.
  • Liberals are still upset that Texas’ red state model is kicking the ass of California’s blue state model. Enter the Texas Tribune, which admits that:

    Drive almost anywhere in the vast Lone Star State and you will see evidence of the “Texas miracle” economy that policymakers like Gov. Rick Perry can’t quit talking about….

    This hot economy, politicians say, is the direct result of their zealous opposition to over-regulation, greedy trial lawyers and profligate government spending. Perry now regularly recruits companies from other states, telling them the grass is greener here. And his likely successor, Attorney General Greg Abbott, has made keeping it that way his campaign mantra.

    It’s hard to argue with the job creation numbers they tout. Since 2003, a third of the net new jobs created in the United States were in Texas. And there are real people in those jobs, people with families to feed.

    But the piece also notes that Texas has led the nation in worker fatalities for seven of the last ten years. I’m not going to get into the details of worker compensation that make up the bulk of the piece, and it is quite possible there is some room for improvement in worker safety. But I do want to note that, as the second largest state in the union, and the one with the biggest oil and gas industry, it’s not terribly surprising that Texas would have the largest number of fatalities, since oil and gas has a fairly high fatality rate (though not injury rate) compared to other industries (see page 14 here).

  • Plano Bomber Anson Chi Pleads Guilty (Again)

    Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

    Remember Anson Chi, the Ron Paul/Occupy follower accused of trying to blow up a gas pipeline in Plano?

    Now he’s apparently plead guilty to charges he already plead guilty to before:

    Anson Chi, 35, pleaded guilty to two of the four counts he was facing at trial – the same two counts he pleaded guilty to during a hearing last year. The difference with this plea agreement is that the prison sentence is essentially open-ended. Chi will be able to argue issues related to sentencing and will have the opportunity to appeal in some cases. The sentence will be imposed by U.S. District Judge Richard Schell. No date has been set for sentencing.

    I’m not going to pretend to understand the legal reasoning behind the double guilty pleas to the same charges.

    “Chi represented himself at trial after firing his defense attorneys earlier this year.”

    That’s pretty much universally a wrong move, but the whole “trying to blow up a pipeline and only injuring yourself” does suggest he’s not the sharpest tine on the rake.

    Previous Anson Chi coverage here.

    Your Lazy Saturday Anti-Gun Control Tweet Repost

    Saturday, June 28th, 2014

    Pretty much what the title says. Consider it a cheap but tasty add-on to your regular blogging menu, like those “crumblies” at Long John Silvers…

    The Illusion of a Consensus in Favor of Amnesty

    Friday, June 13th, 2014

    Polling keeps finding a majority in favor of vague “immigration reform” because of the way the questions are asked.

    Hint: Any question that asks “Do you support comprehensive immigration reform including enforcement…” is already a lie, since we know that the Obama Administration has no intention of enforcing existing immigration laws.

    Things immigration polls don’t ask:

  • Should we enforce existing laws?
  • Should we implement E-verify?
  • Is the Obama Administration faithfully enforcing immigration law?
  • Do you approve of the Obama Administration dumping tens of thousands of illegal alien felons onto America’s streets?
  • These are the things liberal MSM pollsters refrain from asking because they know they won’t like the public’s answers, and it won’t help their push to scare Republicans into passing illegal alien amnesty.

    Indeed, 72% of those polled last year “said they support reducing the illegal immigrant population by requiring employers to check workers’ legal status, fortifying the border, and getting the cooperation of local police.”

    But as an “enforcement first” approach appears to be off the table until Obama leaves office, the only responsible thing for Republicans to do is refrain from passing any immigration “reform” until such time as the White House is occupied by someone willing to actually obey the law.

    Guns Roundup for June 12, 2014

    Thursday, June 12th, 2014

    It’s been a while since I did a roundup of gun news, so here it is. Just don’t be surprised if you read some of this on gunny blogs weeks ago…

  • Obama praises “Australia’s gun laws.” Which is to say, the total confiscation of all firearms from law-abiding citizens.
  • So how much “safer” has New York’s gun-grabbing SAFE act made New York City?

    In the last month alone, 129 people were shot, according to the latest CompStat figures, or 43.3 percent more than for the same period last year.

    Since January, there has been an overall 13.2 percent increase in shooting victims, while 10.2 percent fewer guns have been recovered compared to 2013.

    Of course, some of that is probably due to the work of new Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio…

  • Oklahoma’s House and Senate successfully override governor Mary Fallin’s veto of a bill establishing a 15 day denial window for local law enforcement to turn down approval of certain NFA-regulated firearms and accessories (silencers, suppressors, short-barreled rifles and shotguns, machine guns, etc.), after which approval becomes automatic. Why a Republican governor tried to veto a popular pro-Second Amendment bill (which passed 39-0 in the Senate and 86-3 House, which puts Fallin to the left of many state Democrats) in a deep red state is a deep mystery…
  • CNN admits it got played by the lying liars at Everytown for Gun Safety, who produced a map of “school shootings,” 80% of which were easily debunked as bogus. (Hat tip: Alphecca.)
  • George Soros-funded Moms Demand Action demands Tulsa Chipolte kick out the Oklahoma Open Carry group. The result?

    The manager refused to kick out OKOCA and even gave them free drinks. MDA activists then proceeded to take pictures of the gun owners and attempted to portray them as intimidating and threatening. The management wasn’t having any of it; he threw Moms Demand Action out of his store!

  • How did I miss this? The son of infamous Philadelphia abortion doctor (and now convicted felon) Kermit Gosnell “shot several times” by a homeowner during an “alleged home invasion.” Gosnell family values…
  • Why does the sheriff of an Indiana county with a population of 13,124 need a 60,000 pound mine-resistant MRAP vehicle? (Hat tip: Borepatch.)
  • School shooting stopped by good guy with a gun. (Hat tip: Say Uncle.)
  • Why Civil Rights and Gun Rights Are Inseparable. This is a review of Nicholas Johnson’s Negroes and the Gun: The Black Tradition of Arms.
  • The NRA says, in effect, “Hey, cool it with the Open Carry hi-jinks.”
  • Target considering a gun ban. Contact links there to let them know this is a bad idea…
  • Armed Cincinnati homeowner confronts three home invaders. Result: All three arrested, one with life-threatening injuries. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes…
  • Probably the saddest story you’ll read all year. Seriously. We’re talking industrial strength sad here. Click with caution. (Hat tip Dwight.)
  • Debunking the latest over-hyped bullet.
  • Leland Yee Update for June 5, 2014

    Thursday, June 5th, 2014

    I’ve been busy with other things, so until Dwight covered it, I didn’t realize that indicted California state senator Leland Yee’s suspended campaign still came in third in the race for California Secretary of State, pulling in a quarter-million votes.

    Yee finished ahead of ethics watchdog Dan Schnur, a former chairman of the state Fair Political Practices Commission, who framed his campaign around cleaning up Sacramento. Yee also finished ahead of Derek Cressman, a Democrat and former director of the good-government group Common Cause.

    “Sure, he’s been indicted on a gun trafficking and murder-for-hire scheme, but I really liked his opposition to banning shark fin soup.”

    Alternately, maybe all California voters just naturally assume that all Democratic office holders in their state are crooked.

    In other Leland Yee news:

  • California’s Senate Rules Committee refuses to release his legislative calendar. because you puny peasants have no right to know what slimy deals your betters are making behind closed doors.
  • The presiding judge has ordered the material released to the defense attorneys sealed, as per Yee’s wishes, but over the objections of the lawyers for Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow.

    “There are sensitive materials identifying numerous individuals who are not believed to have engaged in any criminal activities, but who were nonetheless captured on FBI surveillance or documented in FBI reports, for example after being introduced by charged defendants to undercover agents. Such materials, if improperly disclosed, could be used to besmirch these otherwise innocent individuals,” noted the April 8 motion for a protective order.

    Chow’s lawyers, Tony Serra and his team, who claim their client is innocent, take issue with this reasoning.

    ”He knows the politicians, the celebrities who were investigated and through this order of his gagging us, there’s an implication he’s almost protecting their reputation,” Serra said about Breyer.

  • Texas vs. California Roundup for June 3, 2014

    Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

    Lots of news on the Texas vs. California front. An audit turns up $31 billion in California budget mistakes, Democrats hike the minimum wage there, Jerry Brown tries to do something about the growing CalSTARS pension deficit, and people and businesses continue to depart the “Golden State” for Texas…

  • You know how Democrats were crowing that California had a budget surplus? Forget about it:

    The California Bureau of State Audits set off a scandal on June 1st by disclosing that the State Controller’s Office made accounting misstatements amounting to $31.65 billion. The timing of the announcement may be devastating to the Democrats who expected to use their super-majority to pass billions of dollars in increased spending, but may now find the net effects of the accounting restatements are a $7 billion General Fund deficit.

    Snip.

    As the former Treasurer of Orange County, California it is my preliminary judgment that under state law the negative $7.847 billion impact from overstating general fund assets and revenues and overstating deferred tax revenues may create an “on-budget” deficit to the state’s $96.3 billion “General Fund Budget.”

  • From the same audit: “There was a deferred tax-revenue figure posted as $6.2 billion when it was actually $6.2 million.”
  • California Senate votes to hike minimum wage to $13 an hour. It’s like they want to export ALL their jobs to Texas.
  • Wealth continues to move from high tax states to low tax states. “The nine states without a personal income tax gained $146 billion in new wealth while the nine states with the highest income tax rates lost $107 billion.”

    Union-dominated states are sinking further into economic stagnation as Democratic politicians increasingly dominate the local political climate. In 2012, California Democrats won a supermajority in both houses of the legislature and proceeded to accelerate a tax and spending spree that has been ongoing for two decades. For example, California now has the nation’s top state income-tax rate, at 13.3 percent.

    Those kind of policies have consequences. The Manhattan Institute released a report in 2012 that found that since 1990, California had lost nearly 3.4 million residents to other states with lower tax rates.

    Snip.

    The U.S. is swiftly becoming a tale of two nations. States that are following the Reagan model of low taxes and incentives are booming while states that are opting for the Obama model of wealth redistribution and European welfare-state economics are stagnating.

  • Texas’ unemployment rate “has now been equal to or below the national average since January 2007 and below California’s rate—4th highest in the nation—for 93 consecutive months.”
  • A look at how many more billions per year California taxpayers will be coughing up for the inevitable CalSTARS bailout.
  • Alameda Unified’s pension costs could nearly triple and those of its teachers could rise by 25 percent under Governor Jerry Brown’s proposal to reform the California State Teachers Retirement System.”
  • But even though its a step in the right direction, Brown’s proposals stretch out installments so far that they’re still not fiscally responsible. “Even with the higher rates, the debt would continue to grow until 2026. That’s because the amortization over 32 years means the payments would essentially not even cover the interest costs for the first 12.”
  • And the assumptions behind the repayment schedule sound like fantasy: “The state still faces a huge unfunded liability in the teachers’ pension fund—the governor’s proposal would increase employee’s contributions by 3 percent and increase school district’s by nearly 2 ½ times and it would still take 30 years to close the gap with a generously estimated 7.5 percent annual return.”
  • Judge rules CalPERS can be sued for mishandling a long-term insurance program.
  • Thanks to various legal rulings, there will be more felons on California streets. “Release on parole continues a steady climb in California. In just the past five years, over twice as many convicts serving life sentences have been paroled than in the last two decades combined.”
  • Cargo aviation firm Ameriflight is relocating from Burbank to Dallas/Ft. Worth.
  • Sony Pictures Imageworks visual effects house is relocating to Canada.
  • Tesla narrows down list of possible factory locations to Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas. Not on the list: His home state of California. “The winning state will need to have all the necessary permits approved by the time Tesla plans to break ground next month. With the onerous requirements of the California Environmental Protection Act (CEQA) and other environmental regulations, Tesla would be lucky to break ground by 2017 – when its battery factory is scheduled to open.”
  • New effort to bring California’s underfunded health liabilities onto the books. “Legislation in the early 1990s created an investment fund for California state worker retiree health care, but lawmakers never put money in the fund.”
  • Remember the FBI agent who shot and killed a suspect connected with the Boston marathon bombing? Turns out he receives $50,000 a year in disability pay from the Oakland Police Department. And he’s been getting that since 2004, when he retired at age 31. “59% of Oakland Police Department retirees have received disability retirements.” (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • Why people are moving to Texas:

    As a growing number of Americans choose to call Texas home, it is critical that policymakers not lose sight of the reasons why: low taxes, limited government, and personal responsibility. Liberty is popular. That’s a message that needs reinforcement, particularly at the local level where some of the macro level trends involving taxes, spending, and debt are moving in the wrong direction. We can keep Texas and our cities beacons of prosperity and flourishing — but to do that, we must understand the principles that got us here, and defend them in policy and the public square.

  • Some California cities have hidden taxes just to fund government worker pensions. (Hat tip: Pension Tsunami.)
  • Lawsuit over California teacher’s union seniority rules to go to trial.
  • Jerry Brown may let California commit more Kelo-like eminent domain abuses.
  • Sriracha followup: The Irwindale City Council voted Wednesday night to drop its declaration that the hot sauce plant was a public nuisance.
  • Just so I’m not accused of glossing over the occasional bit of bad Texas economic news, Motorola Mobility (which is owned by Google) is closing their Texas smartphone assembly plant. But I think this says more about Motorola Mobility’s viability in a smart phone market dominated by Apple and Samsung than about Texas’ economy…
  • Wallace Hall Followup: Dan Patrick Win = Witchhunt End?

    Monday, June 2nd, 2014

    The witchhunt against UT regent Wallace Hall for uncovering cronyism and favoritism in UT admissions may be coming to an an end, thanks to Dan Patrick’s decisive win the Lt. Governor runoff. Patrick has constantly supported Hall in his investigative efforts and condemned the attempt to impeach him.

    The effect of Patrick’s statement was immediate. The next day, a legislative committee that had met to draft articles of impeachment against Hall failed to do so. Several members of the committee were quoted saying that it would take a while. Others expressed hope that the Travis County District Attorney would, basically, take the case off their hands.

    The piece goes on to note that it is unlikely for Texas House Speaker Joe Straus (who is up to his eyeballs in the scandal) to call a special session just to consider the impeachment of a regent who earns no salary. That would put off a House vote to send the formal charges of impeachment to the senate until next year, when then Lt. Governor Patrick, who controls the Senate agenda, would have numerous tools to delay or kill consideration of the impeachment charges.

    In other Wallace Hall/UT Scandal news, the Dallas Morning News published an editorial by Joe Straus ally Charles Matthews in which he tut-tuts the scandal, saying “nothing to see here.”

    Says Matthews: “A review has already been conducted by the UT system. After a nine-month inquiry, the report released to the public ‘did not uncover any evidence of a systematic, structured or centralized process of reviewing and admitting applicants recommended by influential individuals.’”

    Translation: We’ve investigated ourselves and found ourselves innocent! At least in “the report released to the public,” which seems and awfully specific formulation. (And how about non-”systematic, structured or centralized” abuse?)

    The biographical blurb on Matthews states that “Charles Matthews, a Dallas resident, is former vice president and general counsel of the Exxon Mobil Corp.” But the editorial fails to note that Matthews was the University system chancellor from 2005-2010 (i.e., at least some of the scandal presumably occurred on his watch), which would seem to be fairly important information for readers to judge his impartiality.

    Also, Hall has threatened to sue one of his legislative critics for making false statements about him…