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Ex-CIA officer accused of spying for China

A former CIA officer is facing charges after authorities said he worked to gather sensitive national security information for China.

>> Read more trending news

Authorities initially arrested Jerry Chun Shing Lee, 53, in January on suspicion of unlawfully retaining national defense information. He was arrested at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

About six years earlier, in August 2012, authorities executed search warrants on hotel rooms used by Lee and his family as they relocated back to the U.S. from Hong Kong, Justice Department officials said. In the rooms, investigators said they found classified information written by hand in a pair of small books.

The notes included the true names of covert CIA employees and the locations of covert facilities, among other classified information, authorities said. A thumb drive containing information classified as Secret was also recovered, officials said.

Authorities believe the information was used by Beijing in its efforts to dismantle American spy operations and to identify informants in China, The New York Times reported.

Lee, who is a naturalized U.S. citizen, worked as a case officer for the CIA from 1994 to 2007. Authorities said he was approached by a pair of Chinese intelligence officers in April 2010 and offered money in exchange for information. Officials allege that Lee worked for the foreign officers, providing them with documents related to America’s national defense, until at least 2011.

“Lee’s alleged actions betrayed the American people and his former colleagues at the CIA,” Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Demers said Tuesday in a statement.

Authorities claim Lee “prepared documents responsive to the taskings (from the Chinese intelligence officers), made numerous unexplained cash deposits and repeatedly lied to the U.S. government during voluntary interviews when asked about travel to China and his actions overseas.”

Lee’s attorney, Edward MacMahon, denied after a court appearance in February that his client spied for China, NPR reported.

“Mr. Lee is not a Chinese spy,” MacMahon said. “He is a loyal American who loves his country.”

Teacher charged with attempted murder kept teaching while out on bond

An Illinois teacher charged with attempted murder last summer managed to work as a substitute in a middle school for several months before his past was found out. 

The Chicago Tribune reported that Andres R. Rodriguez, who also goes by Andrew Rodriguez, was serving as a substitute teacher and after-school detention proctor at Unity Junior High, a school in the Cicero School District 99. Cicero is a suburb of Chicago. 

At the time an eighth-grade language arts teacher in the Joliet School District 86, he was hired by the Cicero district last summer.

>> Read more trending news

Less than a month after Cicero hired him, Rodriguez was involved in a July 18 traffic skirmish with a driver after Rodriguez, who was a pedestrian, struck the other man’s car, the Tribune said. The argument devolved into a physical fight. 

Rodriguez, 39, of Tinley Park, shot the man seven times with a .380-caliber handgun, including firing multiple rounds after the victim was already on the ground, prosecutors said at the time of the shooting. Despite suffering gunshot wounds to the head, back, side and arm, the man survived. 

Rodriguez, whose attorneys argue he acted in self-defense, left the scene, but returned after police arrived. He had blood on him, the Tribune reported

The longtime teacher was booked on a charge of attempted murder and released the following day on bail of $500,000, the newspaper said. 

The Joliet school district, which was still technically his employer, placed Rodriguez on paid leave. Less than two weeks later, he began his new job in the Cicero district. 

Cicero schools Superintendent Rodolfo Hernandez said in a statement to CBS Chicago that his office took action immediately upon learning of Rodriguez’s pending charges. 

“District 99 performed all necessary due diligence and administered proper employment action within the legal limits of the law, which included immediately placing the employee on leave from the district,” Hernandez said. “This employee has been on leave and has not been on district grounds since February 16, 2018. Since such time, this employee has had no contact with any students, staff, or parents of District 99.”

Because of the ongoing criminal proceedings, no additional information was released by Cicero school officials. 

The Tribune reported that records show Rodriguez was initially slated to serve as a full-time fifth-grade teacher at Roosevelt Elementary School, but was moved to his more limited role as an internal substitute. He continued to be paid the full-time salary, however. 

The newspaper found no evidence that the Cicero school district notified state education officials of Rodriguez’s pending criminal case. There was also no evidence that parents, students or staff were notified.

Rodriguez was apparently receiving payment from both the Cicero and Joliet school districts simultaneously, the Tribune said. An agenda for the Joliet district’s board of school inspectors’ meeting this week includes a proposed resolution that, if approved, would authorize district lawyers to “pursue reimbursement of all compensation paid to Teacher during the 2017-2018 school year through any reasonably necessary means, including litigation.”

Mom hears brutal slaying of 15-year-old daughter through phone call

A 15-year-old Utah girl checking in with her mother after school on Monday was violently assaulted and killed while her mom listened helplessly on the phone. 

Salt Lake City police investigators are searching for Shaun French, 24, as a person of interest in the slaying of Baleigh Bagshaw. According to the department, officers were called to Bagshaw’s home just after 3 p.m. Monday for a welfare check, at which time they found her body. 

Sgt. Brandon Shearer, a Salt Lake City Police Department spokesman, said Tuesday that Bagshaw, a student at West High School, arrived home from school and called her mother to check in, which was her usual routine. That’s when her killer attacked. 

“While she was on the phone with her mother, she was brutally attacked while inside of her home,” Shearer said. “Her mother heard the attack going on and then the phone went dead.” 

Bagshaw’s mother called a neighbor to check on her daughter, who also called 911, Shearer said. When officers arrived, they found her dead. 

“I can’t even guess what the mother would be going through right now. Our hearts and thoughts are with her and the whole family through this horrible ordeal,” Shearer said

>> Read more trending news

The sergeant said the street around Bagshaw’s home remained cordoned off Tuesday as detectives and crime scene technicians continued to gather evidence. 

“It was a very violent attack, so there’s quite a bit of evidence and it’s widely spread throughout the home and throughout the area,” Shearer said. “We’re just making sure we’re taking our time and collecting all the necessary evidence to continue to investigate the case.” 

French, the person of interest, had an active warrant issued for his arrest on Tuesday for three counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor, charges that stem from a relationship he had with Bagshaw, Shearer said. Investigators confirmed Tuesday that French at one point lived at the Bagshaw home, but said he was not living there at the time of the homicide. 

Photos show that French is a white male with reddish-blonde facial hair and glasses. He is believed to be driving a 1991 Daihatsu Rocky with camouflage paint.

The vehicle has Wyoming tag number 19-13974.

He has ties to Ogden, Utah, as well as Wyoming, Colorado and Cleveland, police officials said. He may be traveling along Interstate 80 through Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana. 

French is considered armed and dangerous. Anyone who spots him should call the nearest law enforcement agency. 

Bagshaw was remembered Tuesday at the ice cream parlor where she worked as a hard worker who always had a smile on her face. 

“She was really sweet,” Gwendolyn Robinson, co-owner of Leatherby’s Family Creamery, told the Deseret News. “She worked very hard. She was a good girl.”

Robinson and her sister and business partner, Diana Ngyeun, said that Bagshaw’s mother called Monday to tell them Baleigh would not be in due to a “family emergency.” Only the following day did they learn what that emergency was. 

“I found out the news this morning and I’m devastated,” a teary Robinson said. “I expect her to be walking into work, still. It’s not computing.”

Scott Arnold, a bishop in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, described the slain teen as a “joy to be around” at youth activities.

“She was just a fun person and just had a great smile and a great attitude, and not a mean bone on her,” Arnold told the News

Bagshaw’s Facebook page was filled with photos of animals. She and her mother, Shawna, were also involved in the dog show community.

School friends of Bagshaw’s spent a portion of Tuesday with grief counselors as they tried to process their loss. 

“She was incredibly smart and talented and she always got along with people around her,” Talia Zamir told the newspaper. “She was really friendly and nice, and that’s what makes everything so heartbreaking, honestly.”

Another classmate, Nura Omer, wrote on Facebook that she remembers Bagshaw as the “shy new girl” at a former school. 

“Your smile was contagious and even if you didn’t know me, you were so nice to me,” Omer wrote. “I hope they catch whoever did this. Justice will be served. Rest easy, love.”

Florida middle school teacher accused of 'foot fetish' loses teaching license

For six years, suspicions persisted about Kenneth Phillips’ relationship with his adolescent students at a South Florida middle school and his seeming infatuation with bare feet. 

>> On MyPalmBeachPost.com: Jupiter Middle teacher accused of ‘foot fetish’ loses teaching license

Nearly a decade after the first concerns were documented, the 60-year-old former teacher at Jupiter Middle has now been compelled to give up his teaching license

His co-workers began worrying about his behavior as early as 2009, when a school technician told police he walked into the English teacher’s classroom unannounced and spotted him with a student in his classroom, the lights dimmed and Phillips’ shoes off. 

>> Read more trending news 

In 2012, a teacher concerned about Phillips’ overly friendly relations with students reported him to police, saying she had seen him with a student’s bare feet in his lap. 

School district police learned that Phillips permitted students to remove their socks in class and store them in his mini-refrigerator.

Read the rest of the story here.

Ohio man killed by officer interviewed with police chief for job

The man killed in a deadly shooting with Kettering, Ohio, police was in the process of interviewing to become a law enforcement officer in the city, authorities said Tuesday.

>> Read more trending news 

Mitchell Simmons had last week met with the police chief and captains as part of the interview process, said Kettering Lt. Michael Gabrielson.

>> On DaytonDailyNews.com: New details emerge after Kettering man fatally shot by police

Simmons, 24, was fatally shot Saturday night in his Chatham Village apartment by an unidentified Kettering officer. It was the second police-involved shooting in the city since August and the 10th in the region in the past year.

>> On DaytonDailyNews.com: Kettering police shooting: 911 dispatchers praised for work under pressure

The Montgomery County Coroner’s Office officially ruled Simmons’ death a homicide Monday afternoon, saying he died as a result of multiple gunshot wounds.

The unnamed officer has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure in cases of officer-involved shootings.

>> On DaytonDailyNews.com: Kettering police shooting: 911 caller describes violent encounter

DoorDash delivery driver allegedly attacked with own head scarf by man claiming to be Jesus

A food delivery driver is speaking out after she said a man grabbed her by her head scarf and tried to strangle her

>> Watch the news report here

Sonya King told WSB-TV that she feared for her life the day she was making a delivery in northwest Atlanta. She was delivering food for DoorDash at a house on South Grand Avenue.

The door was open when she said a 54-year-old man inside told her to leave the food on the counter.

>> Uber Eats driver shoots would-be robbers; 1 critically injured

"He seemed normal. Anybody would have went in," King said.

The woman was headed for the door when she said he told her he wanted to give her a cash tip.

"In the process of him going through his wallet, he said, 'Oh, and by the way, I'm Jesus,'" King said. 

She kept walking to the door when she said she felt him come from behind and grab her head scarf.

>> Uber Eats driver accused of killing customer was convicted of battery in 2010

"He's grabbing me and trying to choke me with my own niqab. I kept telling that man I've got kids. In the midst of me fighting him, he's grabbing my head," King said. "He thought he was Jesus, but Jesus wouldn't do that to nobody."

She said she used her finger to poke his eye and her car keys to fight back.

"In the midst of me stabbing this man, he's saying, 'Aw, this feels good,'" King said.

>> Uber-style service delivers hot meals to inmates at Georgia county jail

Police arrested Rick Painter after King got away and called 911.

When medics were done treating his injuries, authorities charged him with battery and booked him into jail. WSB-TV did some digging and discovered Painter has been in and out of jail on numerous violent charges.

Meanwhile, King said her faith is the reason she made it home to her husband and four children.

"By the love of Allah, I knew he was not going to allow that man to kill a believer," the woman said.

>> Read more trending news 

WSB-TV reached out to DoorDash about the incident. A spokesperson sent  WSB-TV the following statement: 

"DoorDash takes the safety of its community extremely seriously for Dashers, consumers, and merchants. We do not tolerate violence in any form. After learning of this incident, DoorDash took action to deactivate the consumer’s account pending a full investigation. DoorDash is prepared to cooperate with law enforcement to enable them to take swift, appropriate action."

Pit bull attacks Jehovah's Witnesses at front door, police say

Just five hours after four people were injured in a dog attack in Washington state, the animal was euthanized.

>> Watch the news report here

It happened around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday off Cemetery Road in Arlington

Police say four Jehovah’s Witnesses parked in front of a house and as soon as one of them – a 70-year-old woman – got out of the vehicle, a pit bull attacked her.

“I just heard the screaming – I heard some screaming and I didn’t really pay much attention to it. I was on my phone and I just thought it was kids. It sounded like a little girl screaming,” said neighbor Bryant Christy.

>> 4-year-old nearly loses eye after family's newly adopted dog attacks

He was horrified to learn that it was a woman screaming for help. Two people inside the house and the three people who had been inside the car did what they could.

Four of them were taken to a hospital; the most severely injured woman was rushed to Providence in Everett.

“It looks like the dog just escaped through the fence and was protecting its territory and we had very unfortunate results to that. The owner has done everything in terms of surrendering the animal to the police department; he even offered to do that,” said Kristin Banfield with the city of Arlington.

>> Read more trending news 

Banfield says the owner went as far as to ask that the dog be immediately put down – and it was.

“He was genuinely concerned; he wanted to make sure the safety of his family and the public was protected,” she said.

“It was a good move on his part. What else can you do?” Christy said.

Neighbors say they have never seen the dog out, and police say they’ve never had any incidents with this owner or this dog. As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, there was no information available about the victims' condition.

Prosecutor: Detective driving rape victim home takes her to hotel, sexually assaults her

A Kentucky police detective assigned to drive a rape victim home in September 2017 is accused of taking her to a hotel and sexually assaulting her instead, prosecutors said. 

John W. Nissen, of the Hillview Police Department, was indicted last week on charges of official misconduct, tampering with a witness and theft by deception, according to WLKY in Louisville

Hillview Police Chief William Mahoney III said in a statement that the indictment stems from a September 2017 incident in which Nissen was indirectly involved. Department officials “became concerned” about the allegations and turned the investigation over to the Kentucky State Police, whose investigators in turn gave their findings to Shelly Alvey, the commonwealth attorney for Bullitt County. 

The findings led Alvey to seek and obtain Nissen’s indictment. 

Alvey told WLKY that the victim went to Hillview police officers to report she’d been raped by an officer in another Bullitt County department. Detectives interviewed the woman about the allegations.

“(Nissen) agreed to take her home, and the allegation is that when he left the police department, he actually drove her to the home of the alleged perpetrator,” Alvey told the news station

From there, Nissen and the other officer, whose name has not been made public, took the woman to Wal-Mart, where they pooled their money to buy her a phone, Alvey told The Pioneer News, Bullitt County’s community newspaper. 

Nissen is accused of then taking the woman to a hotel and paying for a room, at which point he demanded oral sex from her, the newspaper reported. He also told the woman it was time for her to move to another jurisdiction, Alvey said. 

The prosecutor said evidence indicated that the woman was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the incident. 

>> Read more trending news

The theft by deception charge, which is a Class D felony in Kentucky, stems from the fact that Nissen was on duty at the time of the alleged sexual assault, the News reported. Tampering with a witness is also a Class D felony. 

Each crime is punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. 

Official misconduct is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in jail.

Nissen, a veteran of more than 20 years on the force, made the pages of People magazine in July 2015 after he consoled a female driver who called 911 for assistance after she learned as she drove about the death of her sister.

“Out of safety, I asked if I could talk with her and see if I could get her cooled down a bit,” Nissen told People at the time. “I turned the air vents toward her -- it was over 90 degrees that day -- held her hand, and she cried on my shoulder. I had her take sips of water.”

Nissen, who was training another officer that day, spent more than an hour with the woman, whose family reached out to thank him on the Hillview Police Department’s Facebook page.

Mahoney said in his statement about Nissen’s indictment that the detective has been suspended pending the outcome of the case. He also asked the community for patience during the judicial process, as well as throughout the internal investigation that is underway. 

“The Hillview Police Department and our officers have worked incredibly hard to be an agency that people of this community can look up to,” Mahoney wrote. “We hold our officers to a very high standard and hold them accountable for their actions.

“If the allegations against Detective Nissen are found to be true, you can be assured that we will handle the matter appropriately. The alleged behavior is most definitely not in line with the values of our agency.”  

Georgia man who killed wife when she wanted to move to Florida gets life in prison

A Georgia man who cut his wife’s throat with a pocketknife because she wanted to move to Florida was sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty, officials said.

>> Read more trending news

Roxanne Tenore wanted to live the rest of her life in Florida with her husband and their children. 

She never got that chance. 

When she told her husband, Donny William Eaton, of her plans, he cut her throat with a pocketknife and left her for dead inside their Marietta home.

As jury selection was about to begin in his trial Monday, Eaton, 65, pleaded guilty to malice murder, felony murder and aggravated assault and was sentenced to life in prison, Cobb County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Kim Isaza said Tuesday in a news release. 

“Donny Eaton took the life of his wife in a gruesome manner, with it appearing that he was attempting to decapitate her, all because she wanted to be closer to her children and grandchildren in Florida to live out the remainder of their lives,” Senior Assistant District Attorney Patricia Hull said in the courtroom. 

Eaton admitted in court he cut his wife’s throat on April 4, 2017. The couple argued after he learned Tenore bought a house in St. Lucie County, Florida, Isaza said.

After the stabbing, Eaton drove to his mother’s gravesite in Silver Creek, where he called 911 and confessed to killing his wife. He also requested that officers pick him up. Silver Creek is roughly 61 miles north of downtown Atlanta. 

Floyd County authorities notified Cobb police of the killing. Police found Tenore, 66, in a kneeling position, her head resting on a sofa with “countless” knife wounds on her face and neck. 

Eaton eventually turned himself in at the Bartow County Sheriff’s Office, where he recounted the argument leading to the deadly attack. 

“(He) refused to leave their home in Georgia,” Hull said in court. “If he couldn’t have her here with him in Georgia, he didn’t want her children to have her, either.”

Off-duty police officer pulls gun on man over $1.19 pack of Mentos

Surveillance footage from a California convenience store shows an off-duty Buena Park police officer pull a gun on a man he suspected of stealing a roll of Mentos.

Jose Arreola, 49, of Bellflower, told The Orange County Register that he and his wife, Jacqueline, were headed to a club the night of March 16 when they stopped at a Buena Park Chevron to get cash out of the store’s ATM machine. Jacqueline Arreola also wanted a pack of Mentos.

Video from inside the store, which was obtained by the Register, shows Arreola put the candy on the counter and hand the clerk a $20 bill from the cash he had retrieved out of the ATM. As the clerk is getting his change, Arreola pockets the mints. 

The man in line behind him, wearing shorts and a black hooded sweatshirt, pulls a gun from his hoodie pocket and, identifying himself as a police officer, tells Arreola to put the candy on the counter. 

“I just paid for this,” a stunned-looking Arreola says. 

“Put it back,” the unidentified officer says, keeping his handgun pointed down, but in Arreola’s direction. 

Arreola continues trying to explain.

“You just tried stealing that,” the officer says. “Get your cash and leave.”

Arreola starts to walk away, but again says that he just paid for the candy.

“Did he pay for this?” the officer asks the clerk.

“Yes,” the clerk responds. 

“He paid for it? Are you sure?” the officer asks.

“Yes,” the clerk says. 

The officer looks at Arreola and gestures for him to return to the counter.

“My apologies,” the officer says. 

Arreola told the Register that the apology was not sufficient.

“Are you seriously pulling a gun out over a pack of Mentos?” he said. 

>> Read more trending news

Buena Park Police Chief Corey Sianez said in a Facebook post on Friday that his department was made aware of the incident after it took place and that an internal investigation was initiated. He said Arreola also filed a formal complaint against the unidentified officer and hired an attorney. 

“I want you to know that after I watched the video I found it to be disturbing, as I’m sure it was to you,” Sianez wrote. “However, because there is an ongoing personnel investigation and potential litigation pending against the city, I am unable to discuss the details of our investigation. I can definitely assure you that our investigation will be thorough and if the officer is found to be in violation of any policies and procedures, he will be held accountable. Thank you for your patience and understanding.”

It was unclear whether the officer remained on active duty or was placed on administrative leave during the probe into his actions. 

The officer’s decision to pull out his handgun comes at a time when police shootings are a big issue across the United States. A database from The Washington Post shows that at least 378 people have been shot and killed by police so far in 2018. 

A total of 987 people were fatally shot by law enforcement officers in 2017, the Post found.  

Joe Domanick, associate director of the Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay College, told the Register that it is “astounding” that the officer who pulled his gun on Arreola thought that was the right move to make.

“You pull a gun as a last resort,” Domanick said. “It shows the officer has been poorly trained or not trained at all, or he’s totally unsuited to be a police officer.”

Followers of the Buena Park Police Department’s Facebook page called for the officer to be fired. 

“This man should not be in law enforcement,” one commenter wrote. “He is a danger to the citizens he is supposed to be serving and protecting.”

“So basically, you’re going to investigate yourself and find no wrongdoing,” another man wrote. “Is it standard procedure to threaten a man’s life over $1.19 in mints? If he had a dog with him, would the cop have been required to shoot the animal? You guys suck.”

“Just wondering, do you train your officers to carry their weapons in their pockets?” another commenter asked. “Poor tactics from the start. The guy was literally standing at the cashier collecting his change for the purchase. What made this officer believe the item he placed in his pocket, was not what he just paid for?”

“Where was the ‘good guy with a gun’ when Mr. Arreola needed one? Because here it's clearly not the Buena Park police officer,” a woman wrote. “Mr. Arreola's life was valued at less than $1.50 by your off-duty officer.”

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