Celebs 'Out And About' This Week: Serena Williams, Paula Patton and Beyonce
Wendy Williams is promising to get back to The Wendy Williams Show by the end of January, after delaying her return two previous times.
Williams announced another extended hiatus from her talk show as she continues recovering from a shoulder injury and recent “complications” brought on by Graves' disease, according to a statement posted to the show’s Instagram account Friday (Jan. 18).
“Over the past few days, Wendy has experienced complications regarding her Graves’ Disease that will require treatment,” reads the statement. “Wendy will be under the strict supervision of her physicians, and as part of her care, there will be significant time spent in the hospital. Despite her strong desire to return, she is taking a necessary, extended break from her show to focus on her personal and physical well-being.
“Wendy thanks everyone in advance for their well-wishes and for respecting her and The Hunter Family's privacy during this time.”
The statement included a message of support from Debmar-Mercury, the company that syndicates The Wendy Williams Show. “We wholeheartedly support Wendy in this decision to take the time she needs and we will welcome her back with open arms the moment she is ready.”
Williams will return with new episodes the week of Jan. 28.
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A Note from The Hunter Family As Wendy Williams Hunter previously shared, she fractured her shoulder and has been on the mend. Over the past few days, Wendy has experienced complications regarding her Graves’ Disease that will require treatment. Wendy will be under the strict supervision of her physicians, and as part of her care, there will be significant time spent in the hospital. Despite her strong desire to return, she is taking a necessary, extended break from her show to focus on her personal and physical well-being. Wendy thanks everyone in advance for their well-wishes and for respecting her and The Hunter Family's privacy during this time. Statement from Debmar-Mercury For over ten years, Wendy has been a vital part of the Debmar-Mercury family. We wholeheartedly support Wendy in this decision to take the time she needs and we will welcome her back with open arms the moment she is ready. The Wendy Williams Show will air repeat episodes the week of January 21st and will produce original episodes with a variety of hosts starting the week of January 28th.
Former Chicago police officer, Jason Van Dyke, could end up serving just over three years in prison for killing 17-year-old Laquan McDonald. Van Dyke was sentenced to 81 months Friday (Jan. 18), and according to the Chicago Tribune , the former officer is eligible to receive credit for good behavior.
Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan had to decide between sentencing Van Dyke for second-degree murder or aggravated battery, the latter of which carried a mandatory minimum of six years in prison, the Tribune reports. Gaughan decided that it made more sense to sentence Van Dyke for murder, which makes him eligible for early release.
McDonald was shot to death in 2014. At the time, authorities claimed that the teen was behaving erratically while carrying a small knife. The police department waited 13 months to release video of the shooting. In the footage, McDonald is seen walking away from the cops as Van Dyke opens fire, shooting him 16 times. Van Dyke, a 14-year veteran of the CPD, was arrested and quickly released on bond the day that the video was made public. He was found guilty of second-degree murder and more than a dozen charges of aggravated battery last October.
Darren O'Brien, Van Dyke’s lawyer, pushed for sentencing “leniency,” due in part to his client’s clean criminal record. Depicting O’Brien as the victim, Van Dyke stated that his client feared for his life when he killed McDonald.
“He didn’t start the confrontation,” O’Brien said. “He reacted to what Mr. McDonald did..Everything that happened was set in motion by Mr. McDonald.”
Gaughan called the court case a tragedy for families from both parties. “It’s just so senseless that these acts occur because you can see the pain on both sides. This is a tragedy for both sides."
Van Dyke's sentence came a day after a Cook County judge acquitted three CPD officers charged with covering up the shooting.
California Rep. Maxine Waters met with CBS' Vice President of News and Executive Director of Staff Development and Diversity to discuss the lack of media diversity and inclusion within the media empire.
Their meeting steemed from the network's recent release of their predominately clear team for the coverage of the 2020 presidential election. Comprised of 4 white producers, 5 white-passing reporters and 3 journalists of color, though the 2020 campaigns reporting staff does not have any black anchors.
It's Official: The @CBSNews 2020 Election Team has assembled! https://t.co/0GBCw4mj7s pic.twitter.com/E0rUDAkzf7
— Ben Mitchell (@bfmitchell) January 11, 2019
Waters, like other prominent speakers in the black community, have discussed their reluctance to embrace the staff citing issues with who will tackle the roles that racism will play in elections and the role racism has been playing in the United States. Taking the issues directly to the source, the congresswomen had a discussion with the higher up's to talk redirection.
“The CBS representatives accepted full responsibility and understood the troubling optics-- and subsequent public backlash -- that occurred as a result of the rollout of their 2020 presidential election team. CBS admitted that the initial 2020 campaign team did not reflect the diversity that the company had committed to; assured me that it will not happen again; and revealed that in the coming months they will unveil a more diverse and inclusive slate of African American journalists and journalists from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences," Waters said in a press statement.
"They also identified key individuals in Washington, D.C. and New York City, NY whom they have brought onto their team to fulfill this mission and ensure their news organization reflects the diversity of the country and the communities who will most certainly be engaged in the 2020 elections."
The 43rd district representative has vowed to hold CBS accountable for their diversity issues and is dedicated to working alongside her colleagues in the Congressional Black Caucus.