National Roundup

Maryland
Convicted fraudster pleads in $340,000 ‘psychic’ case

ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) — A Maryland woman who claims to be a psychic has been convicted of scamming people — again.

WRC-TV reports Gina Marie Marks, who worked under the name Natalie Miller, pleaded guilty Friday to multiple counts of felony theft for stealing $340,000 from five people who sought help with their troubles.

Marks said on Friday in court that she would return all the payments she received, but maintained her services are real. Police learned of Marks in 2016 when a woman paid Marks for love spells, but got suspicious when the charges began approaching $80,000.

Marks was arrested at the Miami International Airport in Florida and faces up to six years in prison.

Marks pleaded no contest and guilty to similar charges in 2009 and 2010 in Florida.

Ohio
Officer jailed for lie about being shot during traffic stop

NEW PHILADELPHIA, Ohio (AP) — A now-fired Ohio police officer has been sentenced to three months in jail for shooting himself and falsely claiming he’d been shot during a traffic stop.

The Times Reporter in New Philadelphia reports that a judge on Monday also sentenced former Newcomerstown officer Bryan Eubanks to community service and fines and restitution totaling about $4,500. He could face prison if he violates his two-year parole.

The 38-year-old Eubanks apologized in court. His attorney says the shooting was a suicide attempt and that Eubanks’ actions resulted from post-traumatic stress disorder stemming from his police work.

Authorities say Eubanks claimed people in a car shot him in the arm during a traffic stop in April. Eubanks later confessed the lie.

He pleaded guilty to charges including inducing panic and tampering with evidence.

Ohio
Convicted killer could be released from prison

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio inmate who admitted taking part in three slayings with his brother in a killing spree that left nine dead during the 1970s and ‘80s could soon be released.

The Blade of Toledo reports attorneys for 59-year-old Nathaniel Cook are expected to file for his judicial release as early as this week under terms of his plea agreement.

Cook pleaded guilty to attempted murder and two counts of kidnapping, for a 20-year sentence that ends Tuesday.

Prosecutors say Cook was with his older brother and helped him with three of the nine killings. Anthony Cook is serving two life terms in prison.

The Lucas County prosecutor’s office wants Nathaniel Cook to be evaluated for a possible designation as a sexual predator so he’ll be forced to register his address.

Washington
Utility employee charged with attempted voyeurism

SEATTLE (AP) — A former Seattle City Light employee has been charged with attempted voyeurism in connection with a camera that was recovered from a bathroom stall.

The SeattlePI reports 64-year-old Brent Schmidt is accused of planting a GoPro camera inside a toilet paper dispenser at a City Light office.

Court records say he admitted to installing the camera but claimed he only used it to film himself and typically removed it from the restroom after he did so.

Another employee discovered the camera in February 2017 at the South Service Center.

Court documents say the employee brought it to Schmidt who kept the camera and reported his actions to a director. A search of the camera yielded three blacked out videos.

Schmidt reached a settlement with the city in April that allowed him to use accrued paid leave until May when he was deemed retired.

Utah
Court overturns man’s murder conviction in wife’s death

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Utah Supreme Court has overturned the murder conviction of a man found guilty of killing his wife in a moving pickup truck.

Komasquin Lopez has long maintained that his wife shot herself, and on Friday the high court tossed out the guilty verdict.

The justices ruled the trial judge was wrong to allow prosecutors to tell the jury about previous allegations that Lopez had pointed a gun at people and allow an expert to testify about how likely Shannon Lopez was to kill herself.

Authorities have said Shannon Lopez had a “toxic” level of methamphetamine in her system at the time of her death in December 2013. Komasquin Lopez said the shooting happened after he threatened to leave her.

Prosecutors, though, said the physical evidence didn’t match a suicide.

Massachusetts
Court ruling: OK to search in car didn’t include under hood

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts’ highest court says a police search under a car’s hood and air filter that produced a bag of guns was unconstitutional because officers were only given permission to search the interior of the vehicle.

The Supreme Judicial Court ruled Monday in the case of Anthony Ortiz, who was arrested after he was pulled over by Holyoke officers in 2015. Ortiz told the officers they could check when he was asked if there were any drugs or guns in the vehicle.

Officers raised the hood after nothing was found in the passenger areas of the car. They removed the air filter and found a bag with two guns.

The high court says the permission given to officers to search the car didn’t extend to the area under the hood.

Texas
Trump nominates  Texan for federal appeals court

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — President Donald Trump has picked Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s new general counsel for the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Andrew Oldham had only served as the governor’s general counsel for about a month.

If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, he will join two other Texans who were recently nominated by Trump and confirmed to the same, New Orleans-based court, former Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett and James Ho, an ex-state solicitor general.

Comments

  1. No comments
Sign in to post a comment »