Pro Gun Control Group Hold Memorial On Anniversary Of Sandy Hook School Shooting
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Man Who Killed Hadiya Pendleton Receives 84 Years In Prison

"Hadiya is serving a death sentence handed down by Micheail Ward, and all the family is doing life as a result of her death."

After a two-hour court session on Monday (Jan. 14), a man who was charged for killing then-15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was sentenced to 84 years in prison, The Chicago Tribune reports. Micheail Ward, 24, faced first-degree murder alongside a charge for aggravated use of a weapon.

"Hadiya is serving a death sentence handed down by Micheail Ward, and all the family is doing life as a result of her death," Hadiya's mother Cleopatra Cowley said. On Jan. 29, 2013, the teenager was gunned down in Kenwood, Chicago's Harsh Park. The King College Prep High School honor roll student was with a group of friends when Ward mistook them for rival gang members and opened fire. The bullets fatally struck the teenager in the back. "Never in my existence did I think that my baby, my baby girl who gave meaning to my life, never in a million years did I think someone would come cause her harm," Cowley said.

Once news of the student's death ignited conversations about the senseless gun and gang violence across the country, former first lady and Chicago native Michelle Obama was moved to speak on how close to home Hadiya's death hit for her.

"As I visited with the Pendleton family at Hadiya's funeral, I couldn't get over how familiar they felt to me, because what I realized was Hadiya's family was just like my family. Hadiya Pendleton was me, and I was her...," Obama said, per MSNBC. "But I got to grow up and go to Princeton and Harvard Law School and have a career and family and the most blessed life I could ever imagine...And Hadiya? Oh, we know that story. This isn't some war zone half a world away, this is our home. This kind of violence is what young people here face every single day."

Another suspect, Kenneth Williams, was also arrested and deemed guilty of aggravated battery. Authorities state he was the getaway driver. His sentencing trial is still forthcoming.

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Jennifer Lopez Was Pleasantly Surprised By Keke Palmer's Performance In 'Hustlers'

The all-star cast of the upcoming film Hustlers features plenty of heavy hitters, but it seems Keke Palmer shines the brightest.

Speaking with Billboard last week, Jennifer Lopez dished about what fans can expect in her upcoming film. The all-female led feature was inspired in by "The Hustlers at Scores", a New York magazine article about a real-life group of former exotic dancers who teamed up to overthrow their Wall Street clientele.

While Lopez got tips from visits to the strip club and chats with Cardi B, she enjoyed Palmer's gift of improvisation. "She was great at improv, and not everybody has that knack, you know what I mean?," she said. "But they were all great. I expected Cardi to be good, I expected Lizzo to be good, but I didn't know enough about Keke. I had seen her audition tape. I did a little bit of research on her when they were thinking [about her role]. We went through so many people for that part, so many people."

Palmer kicked off her acting career at the tender age of 9, with leads in films like Akeela & The Bee, Jump In! and starred in her own series True Jackson, VP on Nickelodeon from 2008 to 2011. She's also stolen scenes in Ryan Murphy's Scream Queens and the live rendition of Grease. But it was her bubbly personality that caught Lopez's (who executively produced the film) eye.

"When I saw her -- I had watched a couple of interviews of her and stuff like that -- I was like, 'This girl has something. She has personality,'" she said. "And she was awesome. We had fun from the first scene. I was like, 'OK. We're gon' have fun!'"

Lopez recently shared with Entertainment Tonight some of her biggest challenges in the film like pole dancing.

"Learning pole dancing was probably one of the most challenging things I've ever done for a film," Lopez said. "But it was worth it. I love this character. I love this story. It's a really gritty New York story with women at the forefront -- the thing actresses dream of -- and to be able to produce it and star in it was very special."

Hustlers opens in theaters Sept. 13. Check out the trailer below.

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Earth, Wind & Fire Make History For Kennedy Center Honors Recognition

Award-winning musical group, Earth, Wind, & Fire, has made history. The "September" artists became the first R&B group to receive recognition at the Kennedy Center Honors on Thursday (July 18), Billboard reports.

"The Kennedy Center Honors celebrates icons who, through their artistry, have left an indelible stamp on our collective cultural consciousness," stated Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein. "Earth, Wind & Fire's hooks and grooves are the foundation of a seminal style that continues to shape our musical landscape."

Lead singers or paramount songwriters are predominantly honored. Yet, Earth, Wind & Fire join three other talented groups that have been acknowledged with the distinction: American rock band the Eagles in 2016, and English rock bands Led Zeppelin in 2012, and The Who in 2008.

Other honorees for the upcoming ceremony include Academy Award-winning actress, Sally Field, best known for starring in Forrest Gump (1994), Steel Magnolias (1989), among other films and television series. American singer Linda Ronstadt, who holds 10 Grammy Awards, one Emmy, three Academy of Country Music Awards in addition to her induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. PBS quintessential-series, Sesame Street, has bridged the gap for both cultural and educational narratives for children and adults over the last 50 years. American conductor, composer, and pianist Michael Tilson Thomas is the music director of the San Francisco Symphony, Founder and Artistic Director of the New World Symphony.

The 42nd annual Kennedy Center Honors will celebrate the honorees on Sunday (Dec. 8), in Washington, D.C.

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Young Dro Arrested For Throwing A Plate Of Banana Pudding At His Girlfriend

Young Dro is facing two counts of misdemeanor battery and family violence for reportedly hurling a plate of banana pudding at his girlfriend while at the couple's Atlanta-area home.

The food-flying fiasco between Dro, real name D'Juan Montrel Hart, and his girlfriend took place over money. Yet despite Hart's girlfriend insisting she doesn't want to press charges, local law enforcement booked the 40-year-old Bankhead rapper.

TMZ reports Dro is also being held on a child support contempt order. He owes a whopping $41,000 in back child support and in order to be released he must pay $10,000.

The back child support is for another child with a different woman, not the current girlfriend and Dro alleges that he's paid his previous debt.

Dro rose to prominence in 2006 with fellow ATLien T.I. with the release of the insanely sticky "Shoulder Lean." Most recently, in 2017 he released Da Real Atlanta.

Glad the food-fight and custody payments have been settled.

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