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Investigation Discovery

'Hate In America' Chronicles The Sad Truth About Racism In America

On June 17, 2015, 21 year old Dylann Storm Roof walked into Charleston's historic Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and killed nine parishioners with the intent of starting a race war. The bold and horrific act broke the hearts of many Americans who couldn't understand how in 2015, such an act of terror could take place.

Rev. Daniel Simmons Snr was one of the nine victims killed on June 17, and his granddaughter, Alana Simmons was on hand Thursday (February 25) to attend an advance screening of Hate In America, a docu-series by the Southern Poverty Law Center in coordination with the Investigation Discovery network.

Moderated by journalist Tony Harris, the series chronicles six specific cases and acts of hate in the United States dating back to 1981's Klu Klux Klan killing of Michael Donald in Mobile, Ala,. Famously known as the "Last Lynching in America," two Klansmen saw the 19 year old walking down the road and asked for directions. Once Donald approached the car, a Klansmen took a gun out forcing Donald into the vehicle. After driving to a remote location, Donald attempted to a make a run for it, but was caught by both Klansmen who beat him within an inch of his life and then slit his throat. Donald was then placed in the trunk of the car and driven back to a nearby neighborhood where his lifeless body was hung from a noose and placed on display.

Harris spoke to Donald's surviving family and the lawyer, Morris Dees, also co-founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center, about how he prosecuted the Klan to win the landmark case.

Donald's case along with the Charleston Nine and more are all brought to life in the series. With re-enactments and actual footage from certain event, viewers will see the extent many will go to carry out their heinous crimes. And while the the acts of the transgressors are repugnant, vile and pure evil, the faith, mercy and forgiveness of those effected by it continue to demonstrate the power in humanity.

Hate In America premieres Monday, February 29 at 8PM EST on Investigation Discovery

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Lizzo Will Appear In 'Hustlers' Alongside Cardi B And Jennifer Lopez

Lizzo continues to make waves as a musician, instrumentalist, body-positivity icon and booty-shaker extraordinaire. The artist– whose major-label debut Cuz I Love You is receiving praise from listeners and critics alike– will have a chance to put her twerking skills to the test.

According to reports, the Minnesota transplant is set to join the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Cardi B and Keke Palmer in the already-stacked lineup for the upcoming film, Hustlers. Deadline reports that this is Lizzo’s first live-action film, and her second film overall. She’ll be voicing a character in the upcoming animated musical film, Uglydolls.

Hustlers, which is set to be released by September 2019, is inspired by an article published in New York Magazine in 2016, which “follows a crew of savvy former strip club employees who band together to turn the tables on their Wall Street clients.”

Additional actresses set to appear in the film include Fresh Off The Boat’s Constance Wu, Riverdale’s Lili Reinhart, Julia Stiles, Transparent’s Trace Lysette, Mercedes Ruehl, dancer Mette Towley and Orange Is The New Black’s Madeline Brewer.

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Lee Daniels Details 'Empire' Cast's Feelings About Jussie Smollett Case

The cast of Empire is currently in the process of healing in the aftermath of Jussie Smollet's hate crime scandal. In a new interview with Extra, series creator, Lee Daniels detailed how the actors and crew feel about Jussie and the whole debacle.

"The cast is upset," he admitted. "It is a sad time and we are slowly healing."

Daniels did not reveal whether the cast believes Smollett staged his alleged hate crime earlier this year, but he said that he will not judge him. "What I am learning right now is that I can’t judge," he explained. "That that judgment is for that man wearing that black coat with a gavel and God. I can only support him because he is like my son, he is my son, so I am with him. I can only support him and I can only give him compassion."

As previously reported, the actor, who stars as Jamal Lyon on the hit Fox drama, told Chicago police that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack on Jan. 29. As the investigation continued, the attention turned to Smollett. He was arrested on Feb. 20, and indicted on 16 counts of disorderly conduct for making a false report and allegedly staging the incident. Those charges were subsequently dropped, but the city of Chicago is suing the actor for $130,000 for the time spent investigating the matter.

Check out Lee Daniels interview with Extra in the video above.

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Paras Griffin

Police Conducted Welfare Check On Wendy Williams Over Alleged Poisoning

Police reportedly conducted a wellness check on Wendy Williams at her New Jersey home earlier this year after an anonymous caller claimed the TV personality's husband, Kevin Winter was poisoning her, People reports.

The incident reportedly occurred during Williams' television hiatus in Jan. 2019. According to the police report obtained by People, police arrived at Williams' residence shortly after the call was made. Hunter reportedly answered the door, claiming his wife was recovering from an illness.

Authorities noted that Hunter was "hesitant" to let the police inside the house but eventually did. There, they found Williams in bed with a "blanket covering her from neck to toe." Williams told the cops she was recovering from a broken shoulder.

Williams reportedly "became tearful" when they asked if there was any truth to the poisoning allegation, but she ultimately denied that any wrongdoing was taking place. Police said Hunter "then responded saying something to the effect of there had never been any calls to his house regarding domestic violence."

While the couple might not have received calls to the house, there have been rumors of domestic abuse. Many assumed that was one of many reasons why Williams filed for divorce against Hunter earlier this month. Even so, the Williams maintained that she was leaving on good terms.

"I am going through a time of self-reflection and am trying to right some wrongs,” he said a recent episode of her self-titled show. "No matter what the outcome is or what the future holds, we are still The Hunter Family and I will continue to work with and fully support my wife in this business and through any and all obstacles she may face living her new life of sobriety, while I also work on mine."

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