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Paul Hawthorne

Linda Fairstein Says 'When They See Us' Is "A Basket Of Lies"

The prosecutor who wrongly accused five black and brown boys of gang-raping and attacking a well-to-do white woman in Central Park 30 year ago is meriting the ire of the Internet with the release of Ava DuVernay's Netflix series When They See Us.

Linda Fairstein, the 72-year-old lawyer turned crime novelist said to The Daily Beast DuVernay's latest project "is a basket of lies” 

In the days since the series' premiere, a #cancellindafairsein hashtag has populated Twitter. Many have asked for her crime novels to be removed from retailer's shelves, due to her gross mishandling of the Central Park 5 case. The Roots drummer, Questlove took to Twitter suggesting a deeper look into her prosecutorial past should be done.

Prior to DuVernay's film and after the exoneration of Raymond Santana, Yusef Salaam, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, and Korey Wise; even after Matias Reyes' DNA and confession placed him at the scene of the crime, Fairstein still maintains the young men are guilty.

“Two juries heard that the DNA in and on the jogger’s body was not from any of the 5—and still they convicted on the theory that the missing attacker, who had run with the crowd of 32 young men who rioted in the park, had not yet been caught,” Fairstein wrote in a July 2018 New York Law Journal article.

When They See Us transports viewers back to New York City in 1989, where five boys were arrested, instructed to lie on another, coerced into confessing to a crime they didn't commit and then sentenced to prison. It wouldn't be until 2002 when the real attacker admitted to the heinous crime that their sentences were vacated, More than a decade later in 2014 that the group received a $41 million settlement from the city.

The five men still haven't received an apology.

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Elsa

A Chicago Bartender Spat On Eric Trump And He Wasn't Sure Why

Eric Trump went to Chicago's Aviary cocktail bar Tuesday, (June 25) but instead of enjoying a drink, the 35-year-old said an employee spat on him.

Trump told Breitbart News the encounter was "disgusting" and was a bit taken back since he and his family promote "tolerance."

“It was purely a disgusting act by somebody who clearly has emotional problems,” Trump said. “For a party that preaches tolerance, this once again demonstrates they have very little civility. When somebody is sick enough to resort to spitting on someone, it just emphasizes a sickness and desperation and the fact that we’re winning.”

The woman was taken into custody by Secret Service but later released. The Chicago police department was on hand to deal with a "law enforcement matter.”

CPD was on scene and assisting the United States Secret Service with a law enforcement matter. Any and all inquiries regarding a federal protectee must be directed to the Secret Service. https://t.co/ecq5TaMiQ0

— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) June 26, 2019

Trump's Chicago incident comes as his father's administration is being accused of keeping men, women, and children in concentration camps at the U.S.- Mexican border.

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Julie Bennett

Parental Rights Revoked For Alabama Residents Convicted Of Rape

A new Alabama law requires judges to prohibit the parental rights of residents convicted of first-degree rape and certain sex crimes. The piece of legislation now closes a legal window that previously allowed rapists custody of their children, which were conceived through sexual assault.

News of the law comes a little more than a month after the state passed one of the nation's strictest anti-abortion laws, only allowing a woman to terminate her pregnancy in cases of rape and or incest. The mandate is reportedly part of a new statue titled Jessi's Law.

However, phrasing found inside the 10-page legal text has pro-choice activists concerned. For anyone found guilty of rape and certain sex crimes, their rights as parents are forfeited, yet many have argued that countless rapes and sexual assaults go unreported, and if they are told to authorities, getting a conviction is difficult to do.

Activist think judges in Alabama should end custody if "‘clear and convincing evidence’’ proves a sexual assault took place. This is the standard used in many states according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

The law was named after an Alabama girl named Jessi who was raped by her biological father. Jessi's Law will go into effect Sept. 1.

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Justin Sullivan

San Francisco Becomes First Major U.S. City To Ban E-Cigarettes

San Francisco became the first major U.S. City to ban electronic cigarettes Tuesday (June 25). The measure restricts the purchase of e-cigarettes in the city in addition to barring residents from ordering them online and having them shipped to a San Francisco address, USA Today reports.

The new restriction was put in place in an effort to curb a rise in vaping among high schoolers, but opponents argue that adults consumers will suffer. The temporary prohibition is expected to last until e-cigarettes are up for safety review by the USDA sometime around 2022.

E-cigarette devices heat a liquid into an aerosol that the user then inhales. The liquid typically contains addictive nicotine, flavoring, and other “harmful” chemicals, per the U.S. Surgeon General. The use of e-cigarettes has reportedly “grown dramatically in the last five years.” Last year, 1 in 5 high school students reported using e-cigarettes at least once over the course of a month.

Juul Labs, a popular electronic cigarettes company, argues that adults who switched to vaping will be driven “back to deadly cigarettes” thanks to the ban. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Juul is working to lock in a ballot initiative that would allow the company to continue selling e-cigarettes in the city.

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