Some may see this picture as antiquated, left overs from a by gone time. I see it as the only hope we have for the future!

Jury sentences Boston Bomber to death for marathon attack

by Laurel J. Sweet, Joe Dwinell
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is to be executed for the terrorist bombing attack at the 2013 Boston Marathon that claimed three young lives, maimed 17 and injured hundreds, a 12-member jury ruled today.

The verdict against Tsarnaev, who'll turn 22 in July, was announced by U.S. District Court Judge George A. O'Toole Jr.'s courtroom clerk Paul Lyness. Tsarnaev showed no emotion as the verdict was read.

Marathon bombing survivor Adrianne Haslet-Davis, who lost a third of her left leg in the bombing, said today she's "happy with the verdict." She added, "My heart goes out to everyone in the survivor community and to the victims' families."

Only three of the 12 jurors bought into the defense argument that Tsarnaev was influenced by his older brother Tamerlan. The jurors unanimously agreed that Tsarnaev showed no remorse and they unanimously voted to put him to death.

Tsarnaev will be formally sentenced by O'Toole this summer after survivors and loved ones of the victims have the opportunity to present impact statements.

Tsarnaev will also be afforded the chance to speak. He chose not to take the stand in his own defense during the trial -- a factor jurors were not allowed to consider or even discuss amongst themselves, per O'Toole's orders.

Tsarnaev is expected to remain incarcerated locally until after the sentencing, when he will be delivered to the USP Terre Haute prison in Indiana, where he will be the youngest person on federal death row.

U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch said today in a statement that "Tsarnaev coldly and callously perpetrated a terrorist attack" in Boston.

“We know all too well that no verdict can heal the souls of those who lost loved ones, nor the minds and bodies of those who suffered life-changing injuries from this cowardly attack," Lynch said. "But the ultimate penalty is a fitting punishment for this horrific crime and we hope that the completion of this prosecution will bring some measure of closure to the victims and their families.  We thank the jurors for their service, the people of Boston for their vigilance, resilience and support and the law enforcement community in Boston and throughout the country for their important work.”

The seven women and five men, who reached their verdict after 14 hours of deliberations, convicted the former University of Massachusetts Dartmouth sophomore on April 8 of a 30-count indictment that included the April 15, 2013, bombing murders of marathon spectators Martin Richard, 8, of Dorchester, Lingzi Lu, 23, a Boston University graduate statistics student from China, and restaurant manager Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, a Medford native.

Tsarnaev was also held responsible for the shooting death of MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, 27, three days after the marathon massacre, when the FBI went public with photos of Tsarnaev and his late older brother Tamerlan, 26, as their terror suspects.

Tsarnaev's lawyers maintain it was Tamerlan who shot Collier three times in the head as he sat in his cruiser on the Cambridge campus.

The brothers tried, but failed, to wrest Collier's sidearm from him with plans to head to New York City with more explosives.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev died April 19, 2013, following a brutal firefight with Watertown police, during which he was run over by his brother as he fled the shootout.

The jurors' identities have never been disclosed. They have been a part of the epic case since they were summonsed in early January, and heard 10 weeks of testimony between the separate guilt and sentencing phases - much of it from survivors and amputees with memories so painful and haunting that jurors openly sobbed in the courtroom. 

Newsman George Stephanopoulos Admits and Apologizes for Big Donations to Clinton Foundation

George Stephanopoulos on 'Good Morning America,' 4/30/15, airing on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC via Getty Images)

Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC via Getty Images
ABC’s George Stephanopoulos has acknowledged giving $50,000 to the Clinton Foundation and not publicly disclosing it in the midst of reporting on the foundation.

The Washington Free Beacon and Politico reported Thursday that ABC’s chief news anchor and “This Week” host gave $25,000 to the foundation in 2013 and 2014.

Stephanopoulos was a top Clinton White House adviser and has been reporting on the Clinton Foundation, including interviewing Peter Schweizer, author of the book “Clinton Cash,” which raised questions about whether foreign donations to the foundation had influenced Hillary Clinton during her tenure as secretary of state.

Stephanopoulos apologized for not disclosing his own contributions in a statement to Politico.

“I made charitable donations to the Foundation in support of the work they’re doing on global AIDS prevention and deforestation, causes I care about deeply,” he said. “I thought that my contributions were a matter of public record. However, in hindsight, I should have taken the extra step of personally disclosing my donations to my employer and to the viewers on air during the recent news stories about the Foundation. I apologize.”

Before joining ABC, Stephanopoulos served as communications director and senior adviser to President Bill Clinton and was the communications director for Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign.
ABC told Politico the network will not take action against Stephanopoulos, calling his actions “an honest mistake.”

“As George has said, he made charitable donations to the foundation to support a cause he cares about deeply and believed his contributions were a matter of public record,” ABC said in a statement.

“He should have taken the extra step to notify us and our viewers during the recent news reports about the Foundation. He’s admitted to an honest mistake and apologized for that omission. We stand behind him.”

Amtrak train derails, killing 5 people; cars ripped apart

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- An Amtrak train headed to New York City derailed and tipped over in Philadelphia on Tuesday night, mangling the front of it, tearing the cars apart and killing at least five people. Dozens of passengers were injured, and some climbed out of windows to get away.

Mayor Michael Nutter, who confirmed the deaths, said the scene was horrific.

"It is an absolute disastrous mess," he said. "I've never seen anything like this in my life."

He said there were train cars that were "completely overturned, on their side, ripped apart."

"It is a devastating scene down there," he said. "We walked the entire length of the train area, and the engine completely separated from the rest of the train, and one of the cars is perpendicular to the rest of the cars. It's unbelievable."

Firefighters said dozens of people were hospitalized and six were critically injured.

Train 188, a Northeast Regional, had left Washington, D.C. The front of the train was going into a turn when it started to shake before coming to a sudden stop.

An Associated Press manager, Paul Cheung, was on the train and said he was watching Netflix when "the train started to decelerate, like someone had slammed the brake."

"Then suddenly you could see everything starting to shake," he said. "You could see people's stuff flying over me."

Cheung said another passenger urged him to escape from the back of his car, which he did. He said he saw passengers trying to escape through the windows of cars tipped on their side.

"The front of the train is really mangled," he said. "It's a complete wreck. The whole thing is like a pile of metal."

The cause of the derailment was unknown, but Amtrak said it was investigating. The area where the derailment occurred is known as Frankford Junction and has a big curve.

Police swarming around the crash site, in Port Richmond, a working-class area, told people to get back, away from the train. They pleaded with curious onlookers: "Do NOT go to scene of derailment. 

Please allow 1st responders room to work."

Roads all around the crash site were blocked off. Waves of firefighters continuing toward the train cars, taking people out.

Several injured people, including one man complaining of neck pain, were rolled away on stretchers. 

Others wobbled while walking away or were put on city buses. An elderly woman was given oxygen.

Former U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy was on the train and said he helped people. He tweeted photos of firefighters helping other people in the wreckage.

"Pray for those injured," he said.

Amtrak said the train was carrying 238 passengers and five crew members. It said rail service on the busy Northeast Corridor between New York and Philadelphia had been stopped.

The National Transportation Safety Board said it was gathering information about the derailment. It said it was launching an investigative team, which would arrive at site Wednesday morning.

Another Amtrak train crashed on Sunday. That train, bound for New Orleans, struck a flatbed truck at a railway crossing in Amite, killing the truck's driver and injuring two people on the train.

In March, an Amtrak train collided with a tractor-trailer that was stuck on the tracks in North Carolina, injuring at least 55 people.

Port Richmond, the site of Tuesday's derailment, is one of five neighborhoods in what's known as Philadelphia's River Wards, dense rowhouse neighborhoods located off the Delaware River.

Area resident David Hernandez, whose home is close to the tracks, heard the derailment.

"It sounded like a bunch of shopping carts crashing into each other," he said.

The crashing sound lasted a few seconds, he said, and then there was chaos and screaming.

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Journalists Prevented from Covering PEN Event on Press Freedom


But on the morning of the event, a spokeswoman for the festival, Kyla McMillan, notified the Observer that we had been denied entry. “The press is no longer able to attend this event,” said Ms. McMillan by email. “There has been an issue with press authorizations through U.N. security.”

[UPDATE: Ms. McMillan elaborated in a second email and by phone: “Please accept my sincere apologies—the U.N. requires that all press visiting the headquarters, for any event, have an official U.N. press pass. Due to a miscommunication, we’ve not been able to secure this for you in time.” She added that her team was unaware of United Nations’ rules regarding media credentials and that a total of four journalists have been disinvited.]

Karin Deutsch Karlekar, director of PEN’s Free Expression Programs, and one of the panelists at United Nations event, criticized the decision.

“One would think the more coverage for these types of issues would be better because these are really serious issues that journalists are facing,” Ms. Deutsch Karlekar said, “so discouraging journalists from covering the event just seems odd.”

[UPDATE: Ms. Deutsch Karlekar added by email that “it seems that due to a snafu with these U.N. rules (that we were not aware of until late last night), it won’t be possible to add anyone else on to the list. I am really sorry, and as I said, it does seem extremely odd to be keeping press out of the event.”]