Ohio Police Claim Teen Committed Suicide While Handcuffed In The Back Of A Squad Car

Xavier McMullen’s family wants “the real truth.”

The family of an Ohio teen who died after being put in the back of a squad car wants “the real truth,” from authorities. Xavier McMullen was found dead on Friday (Aug. 25) from an alleged suicide, the Summit County Medical Examiner's Office announced Monday.

The Akron Police Department claims an officer discovered 17-year-old McMullen with a “self inflicted gunshot wound to the head.”

McMullen was one of three teens listed as “possible suspects” in an armed robbery. “One of the victims was physically assaulted and pistol whipped,” Capt. Jesse Lesser said during a press conference Monday.

According to Lesser, the responding officers “developed information” at the scene and tracked the suspects down to another location.

The teens were placed in separate police cruisers while the officers continued their investigation. “At one point an officer approached his cruiser and observed that an individual who had been placed in the rear of it, was now deceased,” Lesser said adding that an ambulance was called to the scene, while officers apparently discovered a .45 caliber weapon in the backseat of the squad car.

Lesser wouldn’t say whether McMullen was patted down before he was put in the vehicle. Pat-downs are dependent on the “situation," he noted.

McMullen’s family and friends aren't buying the department's explanation. "I don't believe that he killed himself. I can't," Greg Wiley,  McMullen's older brother, said in an interview. "But maybe, if he had a gun on him, he was trying to get it off of him and while wiggling and struggling, the trigger pulled. I'd understand a gunshot wound to his back, stomach, something like that. But not the head - how is that possible?"

Wiley, 29, also questioned why McMullen wasn’t “patted down properly,” especially in the case of an armed robbery. “The cops did not do their job. I feel the cops took my brother.”

He added, "Enough violence is going on around us. We want the real truth. Someone needs to pay the consequences. There needs to be justice."

Of course, this isn't the first time that the department has come under fire for the behavior of officers. In 2015, Lesser was named in a lawsuit filed by a man who accused officers of excessive force, false arrest, and more stemming from a traffic stop a decade earlier. Lesser was promoted to captain the same day that the lawsuit was filed.

Later that year, the department launched an investigation into claims that officers punched and hit a man as they arrested him for speeding. And in 2013, an Akron officer assigned to work at a local middle school broke a 13-year-old girl’s arm while violently restraining her in a hallway.

The girl’s mother filed a civil rights lawsuit against the city’s police chief, who has been asked to resign by the mayor of Akron.

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The Viral Covington Catholic High School Teen Is Suing The Washington Post

Nicholas Sandmann, the 16-year-old Kentucky teen who went viral after footage showed him wearing a MAGA hat starring at a Native American man, has launched a lawsuit against The Washington Post to the tune of $250 million.

According to reports, Sandmann's lawyers filed a complaint Tuesday (Feb. 19) and argued the newspaper neglected to add context to the video, which resulted in damage to the teen's reputation, as well as him allegedly being bullied and harassed.

"[The Post] intended to harm Nicholas because he was a white, Catholic boy wearing a MAGA hat, and consciously ignored the threats of harm that it knew would inevitably ensue, in favor of its political agenda," the complaint outlines.

Nicholas and veteran Nathan Phillips crossed paths in January at the March For Life protest in Washington, D. C. While at the Lincoln Memorial, Philips was singing and playing a drum after the Indigenous Peoples March. Scenes from the video show teens in the background making tomahawk chopping gestures with their hands as Philips moves through the crowd, as Nicholas is seen smiling directly in his face.

Longer videos, however, provide more background. Black Hebrew Israelites were shouting and a confrontation ensued between Native Americans and tourists. BuzzFeed News spoke with Hunter Hooligan another attendee of the Indigenous People's March and described Nicholas' behavior as "mob mentality."


"What made me feel scared was the mob mentality of the situation," Hooligan said. "That type of tactic of instilling fear and intimidation and overpowering and outnumbering has been a consistent weapon of white supremacy against indigenous people."

The lawsuit claims Nicholas was singled out by the paper's coverage of the incident and was motivated by their own political agenda.

"The Post must be dealt with the same way every bully is dealt with, and that is hold the bully fully accountable for its wrongdoing in a manner which effectively deters the bully from again bullying other children."

Speaking to Buzzfeed News, The Post is planning to "mount a vigorous defense."

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Stockton Launches Basic Income Program Gifting Residents With $500 A Month

Stockton, California has launched its basic income plan gifting dozens of residents with $500 a month, the Huffington Post reports.

Last year, Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs responded to criticism over the program which was designed to help close the poverty gap as residents struggle to stay afloat amid California's skyrocketing rent prices and increase in homelessness.

The basic income plan -- the first of its kind to be launched by a U.S. city -- was announced by Tubbs and the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration (SEED) in 2017. Under the program, 130 residents will receive a monthly stipend via prepaid debit cards for the next 18 months.

Exciting! Congrats to the team, the city, and to the recipients. We’ve learned so much getting to this point and I am looking forward to learning more. Stockton lead the way @stocktondemo #ReinventStockton https://t.co/j2OPkA4zG8

— Michael Tubbs (@MichaelDTubbs) February 15, 2019

Stockton's median household income is just under $50,000 a year. Residents are chosen through an “algorithm” to make sure that the selection is representative of the community’s diversity.

The money is funded by a grant from the Economic Security Project, in addition to other funds raised, Tubbs said.

“There’s no restriction on how people can use the money,” he pointed out. “If people use it for drugs and alcohol that’s there prerogative. [But] if I didn’t believe in the capacity of the folks who elected me to make good decisions, I probably shouldn’t be mayor.”

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Boyfriend Suspected Of Killing Girlfriend And Her Son Jumps In Front Of Train

An ex-con who's suspected of brutally beating his girlfriend and her son to death committed suicide by jumping in front of Metro-North train six hours after the murders.

According to The New York Daily News, Hector Cruz, 51, is believed to have stabbed and used a workout weight to bludgeon Marisol Ortiz, 51 and her 14-year-old son Alanche del Orbe in their Bronx apartment.

Ortiz's 21-year-old daughter, Chantal del Orbe, found the bodies after returning home from a friend's house. Before bursting into tears, Chantal hung a birthday banner over a makeshift memorial created for her brother who was killed a day before his 15th birthday.

“He was sweet all the time,” she said of her brother. “It was all love in that house.”

Grieving friends, family and those in the neighborhood say they have no doubt Cruz is the killer. “Go in peace my aunt with my nephew. Wow, I feel so powerless why do things like this have to happen. My God. Mourning. What a great loss," Emiluz Ortiz wrote on Facebook.

Cruz was released from prison in 2016 after serving seven years for first-degree assault, and while speaking with the Daily News Chantal said Cruz showcased signs of possessiveness.

“He was a bit jealous. He was strange. He would look through (Ortiz’s) phone but he was never aggressive. He always said he wanted the family united,” she said. “He never really convinced me. Days before he was acting strange.”

The crime was so severe, Ortiz’s cousin Haydee Leonardo said it's affected the funeral.

“They’re going to cremate the bodies because they were told that their faces were so brutally beaten, you can’t see who they were. You can’t see their faces,” he said.

Cruz was reportedly killed by a northbound Metro-North train at the Hartsdale station Sunday morning (Feb. 17) at 9:45 AM.

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