Family Corruption In The Big Easy

A Public Diary On Themes Around A Book

Archive for November, 2007

Should Lori Drew Receive Jail Time For Myspace Bullying?

Posted by familydynamics on November 30, 2007

In a previous post, I wrote about Megan Meier, the 13 year old girl who took her own life after being bullied by her 48 year old neighbor,  Lori Drew.

Lori Drew, the Meiers’ 48-year-old neighbor in suburban St. Louis, admitted in a police report that she created a fictitious MySpace account and pretended to be a boy with a romantic interest in Megan. According to the police report, Drew created the profile to find out what Megan was saying online about her teenage daughter.

I believe Lori Drew should receive jail time for her actions.  What do you think?

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Online Love Triangle Leads To Murder

Posted by familydynamics on November 29, 2007

There has been so much media attention, centered around keeping our children safe from online predators. There has also been countless stories of people being murdered or scammed by someone they met online. The following story, however, gives new meaning to what happens when a delusional individual goes online:

Dan Barrett, second from right, of Lockport, stands with his son, Daniel, during a sentencing hearing for Thomas Montgomery, seated, in the white shirt. Montgomery received a 20-year prison sentence in the murder of Barrett’s son, Brian, last year.

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A 48-year-old man caught up in an internet love triangle was sentenced to 20 years in prison for killing his rival after being dumped by the woman they both competed for.

Thomas Montgomery of Cheektowaga, New York, pleaded guilty in August to the shooting death of 22-year-old Brian Barrett while he sat in a pickup truck shortly after work ended.

Montgomery had passed himself off as an 18-year-old Marine in online chats with a middle-aged West Virginia mother, identified as Mary Sheiler. Never mind that the woman herself posed as an 18-year-old student by using photos of her daughter. When she learned the truth about Montgomery, their online romance cooled and she turned her attention to Barrett.

Montgomery began chatting with the woman, identified in court as Mary Sheiler, in 2005. Occasionally, the woman would mail packages to his home. When one of the packages was intercepted by Montgomery’s wife, she wrote back, telling Sheiler her husband’s true age and saying he was married.

Barrett, whom Montgomery had mentioned in his exchanges, was drawn into the triangle after the woman contacted him online to confirm what she had been told by Montgomery’s wife.

Justice Penny Wolfgang called the situation a “consequence of misuse of the Internet.”

“Consequence of misuse of the Internet”, are you kidding? Since when should the punishment for “misuse of the internet” lead to death?

Posted in crime, Deception, online chatline | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Help Hurricane Katrina Victims Received

Posted by familydynamics on November 28, 2007

N.J. cops’ Katrina missions land them in hot water

Posted by The Times Picayune

One of the Jersey Journal’s front pages


Rushing to the aid of storm victims, about a dozen New Jersey police officers and their chief helped deliver a truckload of relief supplies more than 1,000 miles after Hurricane Katrina and later returned to help provide security for the New Orleans region. But some on the trip say the good-will visits at times resembled wild road trips that led to charges of lewd and racist behavior involving the SWAT team members and the chief.

As a result, the Hoboken SWAT team has been disbanded, and officials in the New Jersey city have launched a pair of investigations into the actions of the officers who helped deliver the supplies to Kenner, a city “adopted” by Hoboken.

A lawsuit filed by five police officers accuses a Hoboken lieutenant of racist behavior during the Louisiana trip, as well as in New Jersey. Photos later surfaced, including one of Hoboken Police Chief Carmen LaBruno with a topless woman, allegedly taken in New Orleans during Carnival, and Hoboken police officers posing with Hooters waitresses and allowing them to carry their guns.

“The city is taking this matter very seriously because of the nature of the allegations,” said a city spokesman, Bill Campbell. The Hudson County prosecutor’s office and the city’s public safety director are both investigating, Campbell said.

The entire SWAT team, about 12 officers, has been reassigned, Campbell said.

LaBruno could not be reached for comment.

A host of Hoboken officials, including some members of the city’s SWAT team, visited Kenner in September 2005, bringing a truckload of relief supplies. The Hoboken City Council had adopted Kenner after the storm, and Hoboken residents and the business community donated items including food, bleach, brooms, food, diapers and more than 1,500 rolls of paper towels.

The police officers were on the clock for the Kenner trip, Campbell said.

It was during that trip that Kenner leaders, including City Councilwoman Michele Branigan, took a group of Hoboken officials to Bull’s Corner restaurant in LaPlace, and at one point Hoboken Lt. Angelo Andriani allegedly poked holes in a white napkin and donned it as if he were a Ku Klux Klansman, according to a lawsuit filed last month by the five Hoboken officers, four of whom were on the SWAT team. The plaintiffs accuse Andriani of being a white supremacist who forced them to do manual labor at his home. All the plaintiffs are Hispanic.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys later released photos allegedly taken during the Hoboken police officers’ next visit to Louisiana to provide security during Mardi Gras, plaintiffs’ attorney Louis Zayas said. LaBruno was photographed posing with a woman flashing her breasts. He could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

On the way home from that trip, SWAT team members were photographed with waitresses at a Hooters restaurant in Alabama, and the waitresses are pictured holding the officers’ weapons.

After those photos were released, Hoboken Mayor David Roberts filled the empty position of public safety director, who oversees the Hoboken police and fire departments, Campbell said. Bill Bergin’s first action was to disband the SWAT team because of the officers’ behavior in Louisiana. The investigations into their actions are continuing, Campbell said.

“That’s the priority,” he said.

Kenner Councilwoman at-Large Jeannie Black said Tuesday she didn’t know about the Hoboken controversy, but said she did know that the Hoboken police officers who visited the city helped residents.

“I don’t condone their behavior,” she said. “But I understand they did a lot of good.”

Black was among four Kenner officials who traveled to Hoboken in November 2005 to thank city officials and accept more donations. She said that because of the awareness raised by the Hoboken police officers, New Jersey residents and schoolchildren held fundraisers to donate money and goods for Kenner even after the initial September trip.

“I just think they did a lot of good,” she said.

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Is this despicable behavior or what? Voice your opinion.

Posted in hurricane katrina | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

These Headlines Are Increasing

Posted by familydynamics on November 27, 2007

Police: Teens Assaulted By Men Met Online

Teen Girls Assaulted For Hours

 


Two men are accused in the sexual assault of two teen girls they met on a popular social networking Web site.Juan Carlos Coello, 19, of East Haven, and Julio Gambana, 18, of Brooklyn, N.Y., are accused in the sexual assault of two girls they met on MySpace.com.

Police said the 17-year-old girls were assaulted in the Morris Cove section of New Haven late Saturday night.The victims met Coello and Qambana on MySpace.com a few weeks ago and had agreed to meet with them this weekend, according to police.

Posted in crime, dangers, myspace | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Are Social Networking Sites Safe?

Posted by familydynamics on November 26, 2007

Millions of young people are putting themselves at risk of identity fraud by leaving their “electronic footprint” on Internet Web sites and blogs, the country’s privacy watchdog has warned.Concerned about the explosion of personal information available online, the Information Commissioner’s Office (IOC) has launched official guidelines for millions of people who use networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace and Bebo.

The guidance includes warnings that a “blog is for life” and “reputation is everything” while entries can leave a permanent “electronic footprint” on the Internet.

The report said that the future of almost three-quarters of young people aged between 14 and 21 — about 4.5 million people — could be placed at risk by the reckless use of information.

The IOC survey found the online content “could damage the prospects of young people and leave many more vulnerable to identity fraud”.

Posted in fraud, Perceptions | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Online Harassment Law

Posted by familydynamics on November 25, 2007

Megan Meier Suicide Establishes Online Harassment Law

Megan Meier Suicide Establishes Online Harassment Law

A local Missouri town declares online harassment law with up to 90 days in jail and a maximum fine of $500.

A year after a 13-year-old committed suicide after being bullied online, city officials approved an ordinance making Internet harassment a misdemeanor that carries a $500 fine and 90-day prison term.

The ordinance unanimously passed by the six-member Board of Aldermen made it illegal for an adult to contact a minor in a way that would cause a reasonable parent to fear for the child’s safety.

Should more states have similar ordinances?

Posted in crime, online harassment | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Celebrate The Holiday’s, This Year, In ‘The Big Easy’

Posted by familydynamics on November 24, 2007

December is a particularly attractive period for enjoying the Big Easy, when temperatures are comfortably in the 60s and tourism is slow. Well before Katrina, hotels throughout the city tried to attract business by offering special Papa Noel rates for the entire month of December. (Papa Noel is the Cajun version of Santa Claus.) Those special lodging prices are back this year, and it’s possible to stay for well under $100 per night at fine hotels in New Orleans’ most exciting neighborhoods.

The city’s official tourism Web site, www.neworleansonline.com, lists 48 participating hotels, including 22 in the French Quarter. The Holiday Inn French Quarter, for example, which is just one block from Bourbon Street, has free parking and promotional Papa Noel rates starting at $69 per night throughout December. By comparison, a recent search for a random day in October revealed the hotel’s best price was $120 a night. (Papa Noel rates are limited in availability, so be flexible if possible, and they must be booked directly with the hotel. Call (800) 747-3279 or go to www.hi-frenchquarter.com for the Holiday Inn.)

Posted in Celebration, Holiday | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Suspects In Holloway Case Will Appear In Court Today

Posted by familydynamics on November 23, 2007

A court hearing in Aruba on Friday will consider whether authorities were right to re-arrest two brothers in connection with the disappearance of an Alabama teenager more than two years ago.

 

 

art.natalee.jpg

 

Natalee Holloway disappeared while on vacation in Aruba with classmates in 2005.

Deepak and Satish Kalpoe, now 24 and 21 respectively, were arrested on Wednesday in Aruba. A third suspect, Joran van der Sloot, was arrested in the Netherlands the same day.

The men apparently were the last people to see Natalee Holloway alive after she left a bar in Aruba.

Prosecutors said the three arrests came because of “new material in the investigation.” No information was immediately available about what new evidence led to the arrests.

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New Orleans Criminal Sheriff Overcharged The City

Posted by familydynamics on November 22, 2007

The Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff’s Office overcharged the city of New Orleans almost $2 million for inmates who actually were in the custody of the federal government and were already being paid for by the U.S. Marshal’s Service or Immigration and Custom Enforcement, Sheriff Marlin Gusman acknowledged Wednesday.

The Sheriff’s Office said it refunded the money Wednesday.

The double billing began after Hurricane Katrina, in November 2005, when Gusman began booking federal inmates brought into Orleans Parish Prison at Central Lockup, the same place as anyone else arrested in New Orleans, said Renee Lapeyrolerie, a spokeswoman for Gusman. The disclosure marks the second major double-billing problem Gusman has acknowledged this month. He blamed both on problems with the computerized inventory of the inmates housed at the city’s jail facilities.

Before the storm destroyed many of the jail buildings, the Sheriff’s Office maintained separate booking and billing programs for federal and city inmates.

Posted in Deception, Injustice, Perceptions | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Punishment For Silence

Posted by familydynamics on November 22, 2007

oliver-thomas.jpgFormer New Orleans City Councilman, Oliver Thomas, received a 37 month prison term, today, for receiving a bribe from convicted political operative Stan “Pampy” Barre.

 

Mr. Thomas sentence could have been lighter if he would have cooperated with the continuing probe of public corruption.

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