Archive for Maryland

Bedbugs give some MD state employees the day off

mde-hq

AP/WTOP reports:

The Maryland Department of the Environment [MDE] is giving some employees the day off after bedbugs were discovered in a portion of the agency’s headquarters building in Baltimore.

Agency spokesman Jay Apperson says employees who work on one floor of the building were granted administrative leave for Monday. The agency is conducting a comprehensive inspection to ensure all areas infested with bedbugs have been identified.

Apperson says the agency will remain open for business Monday.

Bedbugs were discovered in August and an exerminator has been hired, according to the report.

MDE offices are located at 1800 Washington Boulevard in Baltimore, a.k.a. the Montgomery Park building. The Maryland State Lottery & Gaming Control Agency is also in that building.

Goodell on thin ice? AP reports NFL had Rice video in April

Roger Goodell

The AP reports:

A law enforcement official says he sent a video of Ray Rice punching his then-fiancee to an NFL executive three months ago, while league officers have insisted they didn’t see the violent images until this week.

The person played The Associated Press a 12-second voicemail from an NFL office number on April 9 confirming the video arrived. A female voice expresses thanks and says: “You’re right. It’s terrible.”

The law enforcement official, speaking to the AP on condition of anonymity because of the ongoing investigation, says he had no further communication with any NFL employee and can’t confirm anyone watched the video. The person said they were unauthorized to release the video but shared it unsolicited, because they wanted the NFL to have it before deciding on Rice’s punishment.

The NFL has repeatedly said it asked for but could not obtain the video of Rice hitting Janay Palmer — who is now his wife — at an Atlantic City casino in February.

The league says it has no record of the video, and no one in the league office had seen it until TMZ released it. When asked about the voicemail Wednesday, NFL officials repeated their assertion that no league official had seen the video before Monday.

It’s past time for heads to roll over how this situation was mishandled, at both the league and team level.

Student disciplined for displaying Confederate flag at game

confederate-flag

A Washington Post story on a Howard County student disciplined for displaying a Confederate flag at a high school football game:

Rebecca Amani-Dove, the spokeswoman, would not say what type of action was taken against the Glenelg student who displayed the flag while standing at the top of the bleachers during the season opener between Glenelg and River Hill high schools on Friday night. The student was immediately told to take the flag down.

“Carrying a Confederate flag is not illegal, but anything that causes disruption is actionable from an administrative perspective,” Amani-Dove said. “Administrative action was taken in alignment with our student code of conduct.”

Amani-Dove said the principals at Glenelg and River Hill sent letters to parents and addressed students about the incident on Monday.

Ken Ulman, county executive and Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor, weighed in as well (along with the school superintendent):

“Public displays of the Confederate Flag evoke division, hate and subjugation — precisely the opposite of the values we hold in Howard County, and in Maryland,” Howard County Executive Ken Ulman posted on his Facebook page Monday. “We must teach our kids why this is such a hurtful symbol to so many people. We must fight against injustice and intolerance in any form, especially at our schools.”

Howard County Schools Superintendent Renee A. Foose released a statement saying the incident “has been addressed in both of the school communities, and administrative actions have been taken in accordance with our Student Code of Conduct.”

Saying that to many, “the Confederate flag is a powerful symbol of racism, hatred, and unspeakable acts against humanity,” she said the county school system has policies that address civility, student conduct, and safe schools, and that “collectively, these policies support a culture that is intolerant of hateful and disruptive behaviors, words, and symbols.”

This is the same Howard County school system that indoctrinated students with a song praising President Obama a few years ago.

Of course, Ulman will get involved because there’s nothing he won’t get involved in – like his ban on sugary soft drinks at events in the county, which he later backed down on. The county also fired firefighters who spoke out against Ulman’s gun control stance on their personal Facebook accounts in 2013.

Parody video targets Ray Rice in “Video Killed the Ravens Big Star”

ray-rice

A parody video dealing with Ray Rice is set to the tune of “Video Killed the Radio Star.”

More from the video’s YouTube description:

As much as I hated to make this video, it had to be said! Ray Rice was a great Raven, but a bad man. I cannot abide a man hitting a woman under any circumstances unless he has to avoid being beaten badly. This was not the case here. Sorry Ray!

Here’s the parody video itself:

Parody targets Ray Rice in “Video Killed the Ravens Big Star”

ray-rice

A parody video dealing with Ray Rice is set to the tune of “Video Killed the Radio Star.” More from the video’s YouTube description:

As much as I hated to make this video, it had to be said! Ray Rice was a great Raven, but a bad man. I cannot abide a man hitting a woman under any circumstances unless he has to avoid being beaten badly. This was not the case here. Sorry Ray!

Here’s the parody video itself:

Besides free pizza, you can trade your Ray Rice jersey for a $10 bar tab or another jersey

ricejersey

I noted yesterday that Hersh’s Pizza & Drinks is giving a free pizza in exchange for a Ray Rice jersey and also donating $2.70 per jersey to House of Ruth.

Since then, other jersey exchanges have been announced (via USA Today):

Another Baltimore establishment, No Idea Tavern, is matching the $2.70 per jersey donation to House of Ruth and offering a $10 bar tab for each Rice jersey turned in, according to tweets.

The Ravens will also take your Ray Rice jersey (via The Big Lead):

Well then you can return your Ray Rice jersey in exchange for (presumably) the jersey of a different player. So don’t burn Rice’s jersey! Just return it.

The Patriots did this when Aaron Hernandez was charged with murder.

Here’s what the Ravens said specifically via Twitter:

Besides free pizza, you can trade your Ray Rice jersey for a $10 bar tab or another jersey

Trade in your Ray Rice jersey for a free pizza

hershs

Hersh’s Pizza in Baltimore made the above post on Facebook before Ray Rice was released by the Baltimore Ravens and indefinitely suspended by the NFL.

Here’s the text:

Dear Lovers of Women, Not Hitting Women, Non Violence and Just Generally Being a Good Person, 
Come trade your Ray Rice Ravens Jersey in for a free pizza at Hersh’s. These jerseys will save us money on toilet paper this week.
‪#‎CutRayRice‬

Hersh’s Pizza and Drinks is at 1843-45 Light Street in downtown Baltimore.

From their about section on Facebook:

We’re a lively neighborhood pizzeria marrying the fun of pizza with the Mediterranean devotion to clean and vibrant flavors. The centerpiece of our menu is the 11″ Neapolitan-style pizza. And while pizza is the driving force behind the genesis of Hersh’s, we also serve a tightly-edited menu of small plates which features seasonal produce and handmade pasta and Italian sausage.

Hersh’s is also a bar with a youthful urban vibe, with a drinks philosophy that centers on smaller, interesting producers and fresh, house-made components. We stock our ten taps with a variety of microbrews, and our vintage cocktails spotlight the renaissance in American craft spirits.

UPDATE from Hersh’s on Facebook:

 Suggestions for what to do with all the Ray Rice jerseys we collect, since there are only so many we can use for toilet paper? Let us know! Also, Hersh’s will donate $2.70 to House Of Ruth Maryland, Inc. for each jersey we receive. Eat in only.

Ben Carson’s Gaffes

Ben Carson

My latest piece in The Ring at Practical Politicking discusses Dr. Ben Carson’s history of gaffes over the past couple of years and how they are evidence that so far he isn’t mounting a serious or credible campaign for President in 2016.

An excerpt:

[Matt] Lewis also noted that Carson would be “easily dismissed as a crank” if he stayed on the path he was on. It would appear that Carson hasn’t not changed course since Lewis made these remarks. While he may be good for a sound bite and throwing out red meat on the stump, this won’t make him a serious or credible candidate unless he makes changes quickly.

I previously wrote a feature article for Practical Politicking looking into whether Carson is a serious candidate. Today’s piece on his gaffes is a followup to that original piece.

Man charged with killing pregnant girlfriend; no charges yet in death of unborn child

worrell-mugshot

On June 20, Baltimore County Police responded to a home in the Rosedale area of Baltimore County after a 911 call from a resident who found her daughter severely injured. The victim, later identified as Summer Shemida Smith, was declared dead on the scene. Smith was 33 years old and lived at the home with her mother. Media reports indicated that her pregnancy was full-term. Her unborn child also died. After an autopsy the next day, police announced that Smith’s death was the result of homicide. At the time, police did not announce autopsy results for her unborn child.

Today, September 2, a report from The Baltimore Sun reports an arrest has been made:

Baltimore County police have charged a 32-year-old man with first-degree murder in the stabbing death of his pregnant girlfriend in June.

Kenneth Walter Worrell III of the 5800 block of Lillyan Avenue is alleged to have stabbed Summer Shemida Smith, 33, who was nine months pregnant. The Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s office is reviewing the case to see if additional homicide charges could be filed in the death of the unborn child.

The report indicates DNA via blood on a receipt dated 6/20 was found in Worrell’s car. Will prosecutors actually file charges for the death of the unborn child? Logic would indicate that they should  in light of Maryland’s fetal homicide laws since previous reports indicated the pregnancy was full-term.

Maryland has a fetal homicide law (§ 2-103) which says that a defendant can be prosecuted for manslaughter or murder if (via NCSL.org) the perpetrator “intended to cause the death of the viable fetus; intended to cause serious physical injury to the viable fetus; or wantonly or recklessly disregarded the likelihood that the person’s actions would cause the death of or serious physical injury to the viable fetus.”

Under Maryland law (§ 2-209), viable “means that stage when, in the best medical judgment of the attending physician based on the particular facts of the case before the physician, there is a reasonable likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the womb.”

MoCo, PG Counties lead MD in release of unaccompanied immigrant children

maryland-flag

Newsbusters reports:

The “Office of Refugee Resettlement” in the government’s Department of Health and Human Services has released a county-by-county list of 29,890 unaccompanied children sent “to safe settings with sponsors (usually family members).” Year-to-date, the number, according to an HHS state-by-state list, is 37,477. This has occurred “while they await immigration proceedings.”

Now that they’re out in the general population, we’re still supposed to believe that the majority of these “children” (more on that later) will ultimately be deported. After all, that’s what White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said on July 7

If you look at the list referenced above you will see that the top counties in Maryland are Montgomery and Prince George’s County.

Other counties missing from the list may still have received under 50 immigrant children since January 1:

The following table shows county-level data for unaccompanied children released to sponsors by the counties where the sponsors live, where 50 or more children have been released since January 1, 2014.  This data covers 126 counties nationwide, and comprises 29,890 of the 37,477 total children released to sponsors in this period.  ACF will update this data each month.

Here’s the complete list for Maryland via the Office of Refugee Resettlement:

  • Prince George’s County 960
  • Montgomery County – 816
  • Baltimore City – 264
  • Baltimore County – 206
  • Anne Arundel County – 145
  • Frederick County – 139
  • Howard County – 102