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Archive for November, 2015

A Breach of Public Trust in the Handling of Laquan McDonald’s Death?

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on A Breach of Public Trust in the Handling of Laquan McDonald’s Death?

Justice Not Served, Justice was Delayed, Justice was Denied – A Federal Investigation is in order; it is APPROPRIATE and NECESSARY to ferret-out the overall circumstances involving Laquan McDonald’s death. There are just too many questionable aspects regarding this case.


By Juanita Bratcher


No use sugar-coating it, it’s time to call a spade a spade – there are too many questionable aspects regarding the death of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, and Chicagoans, especially Black Chicagoans, have lost confidence in many of those who are/were involved in the Laquan McDonald investigation, and are demanding that they resign or be fired.



Politicians, ministers, and community leaders are defiantly calling for the jobs of Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and anyone who engaged in misconduct or in a cover-up in regards to the investigation of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald’s death.

They’re also calling for a special prosecutor and a federal investigation into the “execution” of McDonald at the hands of Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke, who pumped 16 bullets in the body of the deceased.



And if any elected or public officials were involved in a cover-up – which many seem to think – they should be exposed and held accountable. The public is entitled to know the overall circumstances involving this case and should not be kept in the dark about what really happened.

Officer Jason Van Dyke killed McDonald on October 20, 2014, yet the city kept the video under wrap for more than a year, and only released it after a judge issued a court order that the video recording be made public. The court order was a welcome change for many Chicagoans inasmuch as city officials had argued for months that it should only be made public after the conclusion of ongoing investigations.

A day before the Judge’s court order date to release the video, which is significantly void of audio, State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez held a press conference and announced a charge of first-degree murder against Van Dyke, after having sat on a decision for months. According to her reasoning, investigations into police shootings and misconduct are “massive and labor intensive.” She also said she acted in regards to Mayor Emanuel’s plea that it was in the best interest of the investigation to keep the video away from the public eye.


Although Van Dyke’s attorney Daniel Herbert’s comments were shortcoming at best, at one point he commented that the officer feared for his life and acted lawfully during the incident.

Feared for his life? When eight other police officers were present and reportedly none fired a gun but Van Dyke?


Reports stated that McDonald was down after the first two shots but Van Dyke kept shooting.

However, the video showed McDonald walking away from Van Dyke.

In court, prosecutors said the shooting happened within 15 seconds, and pointed out that McDonald was already on the ground in 13 of those seconds.

What were the other police officers doing or thinking while watching Van Dyke on his shooting spree?

After killing McDonald, Van Dyke was assigned to desk duty (police said that’s standard procedure) and continued to collect a salary, even though he had been stripped of his police powers.

When the video was released, it showed a different version than what police had first said about the incident. Police reported that McDonald lunged at the officer with a knife, that it was self-defense.

In a statement released by the National Bar Association, Benjamin Crump, president of the NBA, said “It is unacceptable that it took over a year to file these charges against Officer Van Dyke. Not only did it take a year to file these charges, but Van Dyke was able to continue in the capacity of a police officer during this delayed investigation.”

Crump said the video that State’s Attorney Alvarez relied on to charge Officer Van Dyke with first-degree murder has been available since day one, asking, “Why did it take so long?”

Crump added: “I believe that had there not been a court order to release the video, Officer Van Dyke would not have been charged.”

Alvarez’s office is handling the Van Dyke case, but Rev. Jesse Jackson and other community and political leaders are calling for a special prosecutor to oversee the case.

Some of the questionable aspects are:

• The police version of the incident conflicted with the video
• A Burger King District manager questioned by the FBI said his establishment was forcefully entered by the Chicago Police Department and after they left 86 minutes of the video had been deleted.
• Why was it little more than a year before charges were brought against Van Dyke, and then only after a court order was issued by a judge?
• Why was the McDonald family given a $5 million settlement without a trial?
• Did Chicago aldermen sign-off on a $5 million settlement without seeing the video or knowing the circumstances involving this case?


At least 20 complaints and two lawsuits were filed against Van Dyke prior to McDonald’s death, most of which had to do with use of excessive force.


In William Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet, it stated that “Something is rotten In Denmark.” And some Chicagoans say “There’s something rotten in Chicago about the McDonald case and when it comes to justice for Blacks.


Juanita Bratcher is an Award-Winning Journalist, the Publisher of www.copylinemagazine.com and the author of several books, songwriter and poet. She has been a Journalist for more than 39 years covering politics, education and a wide-range of other topics.

ICYMI: ‘ Young Black Organizers Call for a Divestment From the Chicago Police Department after Laquan McDonald Tape Cover-up’

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on ICYMI: ‘ Young Black Organizers Call for a Divestment From the Chicago Police Department after Laquan McDonald Tape Cover-up’

Young Black organizers demand an investigation into Chicago’s Police Department, Mayor’s Office & Cook County State’s Attorney

Mayor Decline Press conference.PNG

 From: Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100)

CHICAGO, IL – On Tuesday, November 24th, organizers of the Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100),  We Charge Genocide, Assata’s Daughters, Fearless Leading by the Youth (FLY), #LetUsBreathe Collective, and Black Lives Matter: Chicago (BLM) shut down the intersection of Roosevelt and State Street to demand an immediate divestment from the Chicago Police Department after the tape cover-up of the death of Laquan Mcdonald.

While exercising their constitutional rights to peacefully assemble and voice freedom of speech, BYP100 and fellow organizers were targeted, beaten, and arrested by the Chicago Police Department. “ The violence that occurred Tuesday night at the protest was started by the unnecessary and brutal use of force by the Chicago Police Department. CPD infringed on our right to assemble and purposely targeted young Black leaders from our organizations”, said Jasson Perrez, National Co-chair of BYP100.

BYP100 is calling on an immediate defunding of the Chicago Police Department and a reinvestment into programs and policies that have a positive impact in Black communities, such as: mental health clinics, trauma centers, job creation, and quality public education. “ FLY organized for over 5 years to have a trauma center on the South Side of Chicago. We need more resources in our communities like quality public schools and jobs so Black people can survive and reach their fullest potential. It is ridiculous that the Mayor of Chicago and Chicago Aldermen passed a budget that gives 40% of spending to a police force that is terrorizing our communities”, said FLY Organizer, Veronica Moore.

BYP100 demands that Illinois State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and CPD Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy resign from office for their participation in the cover-up of the tape of Laquan McDonald’s death and their decision to keep CPD Officer, Jason Van Dyke on the force after murdering McDonald.

“We are calling for an immediate resignation of  Alvarez, Emanuel, and McCarthy; in addition to a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and United Nations investigation into the Chicago Police Department. The tape cover-up conspiracy of Laquan’s death is proof that Alvarez, Emanuel, and CPD do not stand for justice and are corrupt public servants. Our communities are less safe because of their decisions and they are unqualified to lead and protect our city”, said BYP100 Organizer Rachel Williams.

Since the release of the Laquan McDonald tape, BYP100 and fellow organizers will continue to demand that Chicago elected officials and CPD are held accountable for the violence they inflict on the Black community and their negligence to address demands for police accountability and funding for resources necessary for Black communities to thrive.

In the news:

Chicago’s Black Youth to Mobilize Over Video Release in Police Shooting Death of Laquan McDonald

Chicago youth groups lead demonstration for Laquan McDonald #16shots
Black Lives Matter protests were nonviolent, but certainly not calm: Two large Black Lives Matter protests in Chicago and Minneapolis Tuesday night resulted in no violence. But that wasn’t the whole story
Chicago Activist: City’s Call for Peace over Laquan McDonald Video Does Not Extend to Police Dept.

Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100) is an activist member-based organization of Black 18-35 year olds, dedicated to creating justice and freedom for all Black people. We do this through building a network focused on transformative leadership development, direct action organizing, advocacy and education using a Black queer feminist lens. We are an organization affiliated with the Black Youth Project.

Photo Image: BYP100 (Twitter)

Accountant Pleads Guilty to Embezzling More Than $130,000 from Illinois Medical District Commission

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Accountant Pleads Guilty to Embezzling More Than $130,000 from Illinois Medical District Commission
CHICAGO, IL —A senior accountant at the Illinois Medical District Commission pleaded guilty to charges she embezzled more than $130,000 from the agency by misdirecting procurement funds into her personal accounts.

Cynthia Fernandez-Alonso, 42, of Berwyn, used her position to direct payments from the Commission’s bank account into three personal accounts, according to a plea agreement. Fernandez-Alonso recorded the payments in the Commission’s internal records, but attributed them as having been made to the agency’s energy provider and other vendors, the plea agreement states.

Fernandez-Alonso pleaded guilty to one count of embezzlement. The conviction carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison and a $250,000 fine, plus mandatory restitution. U.S. District Judge Elaine E. Bucklo scheduled a sentencing hearing for February 22, 2016, at 10:00 a.m.

The Illinois Medical District Commission is a governmental agency that facilitates collaboration among the various medical, health and social service agencies operating within the Illinois Medical District on Chicago’s Near West Side. Fernandez-Alonso was entrusted with the responsibility of authorizing payments from the Commission’s bank account to its outside vendors and suppliers.

From at least November 2013 to at least April 2015, Fernandez-Alonso directed deposits into her accounts on a nearly monthly basis. In some months, multiple transfers were made. On the same day she received one such deposit—for $4,852 on Dec. 10, 2014—a purchase of jewelry was made with her Chase debit card at Kay Jewelers for $2,847, according to the plea agreement.

The guilty plea was announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Maureen Merin and Sarah Streicker.

U.S. Attorney’s Office November 23, 2015
  • Northern District of Illinois (312) 353-5300

Bronzeville’s Wendell Phillips Wildcats Become First Ever Chicago Public School to Capture State Football Championship With a 51-7 Win

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Bronzeville’s Wendell Phillips Wildcats Become First Ever Chicago Public School to Capture State Football Championship With a 51-7 Win


AUSL’s Wendell Phillips Academy Wildcats Finish Undefeated Season With History Making Performance

School Will Hold Celebratory Prep Rally on Wednesday, December 2, at 2:30 P.M.



CHICAGO, IL – In the first 40 years that the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) held statewide playoff football competition, no team from the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) were crowned champions. The Wendell Phillips Academy High School Wildcats broke that trend with an overwhelming 51-7 victory in the class 4A finals against an undefeated Belleville Althoff Catholic High School on Friday, November 27, 2015.

“Before today, no Chicago Public Schools football team had ever won a state title.  Tonight, the Phillips Academy Wildcats ended that streak. They have proven to be the true definition of perseverance and determination. Tonight, we celebrate them not only as the pride of Bronzeville, but all of Chicago. Congratulations to Coach Troy McAllister and his team on not only a perfect season, but on securing a spot in Illinois’ sports history,” said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in a statement released Friday night.

The team’s success is the culmination of a transformation of the school by the Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL). Since the fall of 2010, Phillips has been managed by AUSL, a nonprofit CPS school management organization that creates schools of excellence by developing highly effective teachers and transforming educational outcomes for students in what once were CPS’ lowest performing schools.

On their most recent ACT, Phillips students scored higher than at any point in the past 15 years and last year 100 percent of the senior class applied and were accepted to college with more than $5 million in scholarship offers. The football program was also transformed with only a dozen students in the program in 2010 to now involving more than 90.

“This team went out on Friday night to make a statement, which was excellence is achievable for anyone that devotes themselves to a goal. ” said Mike Koldyke, AUSL’s Founder and Chairman Emeritus. “AUSL creates educational equity by asking students to show us what they are capable of and giving them the tools to accomplish it. The 2015 Phillips’ Wildcats are a prime example of what the young people of Chicago can do when given the chance.”

Phillips dominated the 4A IHSA Football Championship, held at NIU’s Husky Stadium in DeKalb Il., with an entire team effort. The team only allowed one early touchdown and then went on to score 51 unanswered points led by quarterback Quayvon Skanes’ one passing and four rushing touchdowns.

“All year I have felt that these student athletes knew they were a part of something much larger than themselves and were playing to show the world what this school and community represents,” said Wendell Phillips Head Football Coach Troy McAllister. “This win is a product of the remarkable transformation of Wendell Phillips Academy and was made possible by the support of our student body, dedicated teachers and the entire city of Chicago.”

The Wildcats were led by 19 seniors all of whom are on track to graduate and several of them that are being recruited to play at the collegiate level. The team has a number of players who are highly sought after by colleges on its roster including Linebacker Amani Jones who has committed to the University of Iowa, Wide Receiver Quayvon Skanes who has committed to the University of Connecticut and Defensive End Amir Watts who is uncommitted but is being recruited by several D1 programs.

About The Academy for Urban School Leadership

AUSL is a Chicago nonprofit school management organization that creates schools of excellence by developing highly effective teachers and transforming educational outcomes for students in the lowest performing schools.

AUSL was founded in 2001 and today manages 32 Chicago Public Schools serving more than 18,000 students. Over 880 teachers have graduated from the AUSL Chicago Teacher Residency™.

Philadelphia Man Charged in Fraud Scheme Involving Counterfeit Credit Cards

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Philadelphia Man Charged in Fraud Scheme Involving Counterfeit Credit Cards

PHILADELPHIA—Christopher Castillo, 22, of Philadelphia, was charged in an Indictment with producing and selling counterfeit credit cards, possessing credit card making equipment, and aggravated identity theft of a Scotiabank credit card account holder, announced United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. According to the indictment, among the items found in Castillo’s possession were over 150 white plastic credit card templates, multiple partially manufactured credit cards, multiple sheets of holographic stickers resembling the holograms found on Visa and MasterCard cards, documents containing personally identifiable information, and a desktop credit card printer.

If convicted the defendant faces a mandatory minimum sentence of two years in prison with a maximum possible sentence of 35 years in prison, three years’ supervised release, a fine, and a $400 special assessment.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Anita Eve.

U.S. Attorney’s Office November 25, 2015
  • Eastern District of Pennsylvania (215) 861-8200

Black Business Owners Combine Efforts to Launch Innovative Approach to “Buy Black” Movement

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Black Business Owners Combine Efforts to Launch Innovative Approach to “Buy Black” Movement

Three Champions of the Buy Black Movement Come Together to Support Greater Economic Progress for the Black Business Community 

Buy Black Movement

WASHINGTON, DC (BlackNews.com) –  Three champions of the buy Black movement are joining forces in a powerful new effort to strengthen Black America. PurchaseBlack.com, BlackBizScope.com, and Tuloko.com are working together to support progress for Black businesses.

PurchaseBlack.com is a curated online shopping marketplace filled with excellent Black owned businesses selling their products by invitation only. BlackBizScope.com organizes live broadcasts highlighting Black owned businesses using the social network Periscope. Tuloko.com is a web and mobile platform that provides an innovative Black business directory, news, events, and information for android and iPhone.

“Our businesses are different, but we share a common vision,” says Brian AM Williams, founder of PurchaseBlack.com. We all exist to bring real change to Black America through business. We know that economics can help solve many of our toughest issues.”

Each organization empowers multiple Black owned businesses as well as Black friendly organizations that help make a positive impact. Black business owners hire Black employees at higher rates, give to charity, and find value in improving their communities. Through creating stronger Black owned businesses, these three groups are creating a stronger community.

“Collaboration is the key for success and sustainability for African-American owned businesses. BlackBizScope.com uses the fastest growing social media platform “Periscope” to bring awareness of African-American businesses and encourage our audience to be intentional and strategically support,” says BlackBizScope co-founder Pamela J. Booker.

Considering the challenging racial climate, events like Pattie Labelles pies generating over 2 million dollars in 48 hours, or the New York Times Article Blacks Are Challenged to Buy From Black-Owned Businesses to Close Gap, the resurgence of buying Black is growing, and these three organizations are at the forefront of the movement.

“Purchasing from Black-owned businesses in previous years was a hallmark of a certain generation. Our platforms are a way to revive that spirit, in part, because African-American owned businesses across the country are struggling and because its been recognized that entrepreneurship is the strongest way to get (and keep) African-Americans employed,” says Tuloko co-founder Sean Armstrong.

With over 1.1 trillion dollars in collective buying power, Black America would be the #16 richest country on earth, however, our buying power isnt being employed by Black Americans at its potential. These three organizations realized this relationship and have decided that by bringing collective awareness to their solutions, they could make a real, sustainable impact. PurchaseBlack.com, BlackBizScope.com, and Tuloko.com are generating the answers that have been needed to help address some of Americas most challenging issues. Connect with each organization by joining their websites, downloading their applications, and engaging with them on social media.

Illinois Metros See Minimal Job Growth; Seven Metro Areas Lose Jobs

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Illinois Metros See Minimal Job Growth; Seven Metro Areas Lose Jobs

Unemployment Rates Continue Downward Trend


CHICAGO, IL – Unemployment rates in Illinois fell in 12 metro areas, increased in one and remained the same in one. Seven metro areas across the state saw job loss compared to a year ago, according to preliminary data released today by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Not seasonally adjusted data compares October 2015 with October 2014.

Illinois businesses lost jobs in seven metro areas including the Quad Cities (-2.1 percent, -3,900), Carbondale-Marion (-1.6 percent, -900), and Peoria (-1.0 percent, -1,800). Illinois businesses added jobs in six metros, in which the largest increases were seen in: Danville (+1.7 percent, +500), Elgin (+1.6 percent, +4,200), and Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division (+1.4 percent or +49,600). The industry sectors recording job growth in the majority of metros were: Retail Trade (nine of 14), Leisure and Hospitality (nine of 14), Transportation, Warehousing and Public Utilities (eight of 14), and Education and Health Services (eight of 14).

“We are thankful for every single job we have gained since the national recovery began in July 2009,” IDES Director Jeff Mays said. “However, at Thanksgiving 2015, too few Illinois residents are feeling this turnaround.”

The not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 5.3 percent in October 2015 and stood at 12.2 percent at its peak in this economic cycle in January 2010. Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.8 percent in October and 10.6 percent in January 2010 at its peak. The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and looking for work, and is not tied to collecting unemployment insurance benefits.


Metropolitan Area



Over-the-Year Change

Bloomington MSA




Carbondale-Marion MSA




Champaign-Urbana MSA




Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division




Danville MSA




Davenport-Moline-Rock Island MSA




Decatur MSA




Elgin Metro Division




Kankakee MSA




Lake-County-Kenosha County Metro Division





Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Metropolitan Area

October 2015

October 2014

Over-the-Year Change













Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights








Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL
















Lake-Kenosha, IL-WI
















St. Louis (IL-Section)




Illinois Statewide




* Data subject to revision.

TimeLine Theatre Company Presents the Chicago Premiere of Sunset Baby January 13 – March 10, 2016

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on TimeLine Theatre Company Presents the Chicago Premiere of Sunset Baby January 13 – March 10, 2016

 Sunset Baby is written by Dominique Morisseau and already hit in New York and London, is directed by Associate Artist Ron OJ Parson

CHICAGO, IL — As the Midwest premiere of Leigh Fondakowski’s SPILL continues its acclaimed run at Stage 773 through December 19, TimeLine Theatre Company announces the next highly anticipated production of its 19th season: The Chicago premiere of SUNSET BABY, a powerful and timely drama about family, survival and the nature of liberation.

Written by Dominique Morisseau (the acclaimed and fast-rising playwright of DETROIT ’67, PARADISE BLUE and SKELETON CREW, and a 2015 recipient of the Steinberg Playwright Award) and directed by Ron OJ Parson (the Associate Artist behind TimeLine’s sold-out 2013 production of A RAISIN IN THE SUN) comes this smart, entertaining and moving story that has already been a hit in New York and London. The New York Times says SUNSET BABY is “not only dynamic, it’s dynamite,” and wrote about Morisseau, one of the country’s most exciting playwrights, that “[she] knows the code for getting under our skins.”

The three-person cast will feature Chicago theatre veteran Phillip Edward Van Lear (FOX’s PRISON BREAK and roles at the Goodman, Steppenwolf, Chicago Shakespeare and others) in his TimeLine Theatre debut; Anji White (RENT and THE PROJECT(S) at American Theater Company) returning to TimeLine after understudying A RAISIN IN THE SUN; and Kelvin Roston Jr. (Paramount, Court and Northlight, including Morisseau’s DETROIT ’67), making his TimeLine debut.

SUNSET BABY explores a woman’s journey from a brutal existence to her own liberation. Her father, a former revolutionary in the Black Power movement, has finally come to Brooklyn to mend their relationship. But he is totally unprepared for the hardened, modern woman he finds and is forced to confront his most challenging revolution of all: fatherhood. As father and daughter circle one another, old wounds are revealed, generational differences exposed, and blazing truths laid bare. The Guardian raved that SUNSET BABY is “a play that—like its flawed, complex characters—has a fiercely beating, damaged heart.”

SUNSET BABY received its world premiere at New York’s LAByrinth Theatre Company in 2013 and was subsequently presented at London’s Gate Theater. TimeLine’s production is its Chicago premiere.

Press Night is Wednesday, January 20, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. (NOTE: TimeLine requests that reviews be embargoed until after curtain time on Opening Night, Thursday, January 21 at 7:30 p.m.).

Production staff includes Regina Garcia (Scenic Design), Jared Gooding (Lighting Design), Christine Pascual (Costume Design), Christopher Kriz (Sound Design), Vivian Knouse (Properties Design), Jared Bellot (Dramaturgy) and Richard Lundy (Stage Management).


PREVIEWS: Wednesday, January 13 through Saturday, January 16 at 8 p.m.; Sunday, January 17 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.; Tuesday, January 19 at 8 p.m. and Wednesday, January 20 at 7:30 p.m.
OPENING NIGHT: Thursday, January 21 at 7:30 p.m.
REGULAR RUN: Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m., through April 10, 2016. EXCEPTIONS: Wednesday, February 10 at 8:30 p.m. and Thursday, March 24 at 8:30 p.m. No shows on Saturday, January 23 at 4 p.m. and Friday, March 18. Additional performance on Sunday, March 20 at 6 p.m.

• Post-Show Discussions: A brief, informal post-show discussion hosted by a TimeLine Company Member and featuring the production dramaturg and members of the cast on Wednesday, January 27; Sunday, January 31; Thursday, February 4; Thursday, February 25; Sunday, February 28; and Wednesday, March 2.
• Pre-Show Discussions: Starting one hour before these performances, a 30-minute introductory conversation hosted by a TimeLine Company Member and the production dramaturg with members of the production team on Wednesday, February 17 and Sunday, March 6.
• Sunday Scholars Panel Discussion: A one-hour post-show discussion featuring experts on the themes and issues of the play on Sunday, February 21.

• Company Member Discussion: A post-show discussion with the collaborative team of artists who choose TimeLine’s programming and guide the company’s mission on Sunday, April 3.
All discussions are free and open to the public. For further details about all planned discussions and events, visit timelinetheatre.com/sunset_baby/events.htm


Statement by Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle On the LaQuan McDonald Case

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on Statement by Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle On the LaQuan McDonald Case

“My heart goes out to the family of LaQuan McDonald. I cannot begin to understand the grief felt by LaQuan’s family and friends. We cannot ease their pain but we can demand accountability. While we cannot yet know all the facts of the case, delay and obstruction have prevented justice from being carried out. I commend Judge Valderamma for demanding the release of the dashcam video. However, I am dismayed that we had to rely on his intervention and that only after his decision was the officer involved charged. There is no doubt the video will be incredibly difficult to view, but it is the only way to move forward. My hope is that this allows us not only to heal, but to work together towards a more just and accountable criminal justice system.”

Photo: Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle

FBI Reminds Shoppers to be Aware of Cyber Criminals Offering Scams This Holiday Season

Posted by Admin On November - 30 - 2015 Comments Off on FBI Reminds Shoppers to be Aware of Cyber Criminals Offering Scams This Holiday Season

If the Deal Sounds too Good to be True, It Probably Is

The FBI reminds shoppers in advance of the holiday shopping season to beware of cyber criminals and their aggressive and creative ways to steal money and personal information. Scammers use many techniques to defraud consumers by offering too good to be true deals via phishing e-mails advertising brand name merchandise, quick money making offers, or gift cards as an incentive to purchase a product. Remember, if the deal looks too good to be true, it probably is. Never provide your personal information to an unknown party or untrusted website.

Scammers often use e-mail to advertise hot-ticket items of the year that may become hard to find during the holidays to lure unsuspecting consumers to click on links. Steer clear of untrusted sites or ads offering items at unrealistic discounts or with special coupons. You may end up paying for an item, giving away personal information and credit card details and then receive nothing in return, along with your identity compromised. These sites may also be offering products at a great price, but the products being sold are not the same as the products they advertise. This is known as the bait and switch scam.

Beware of posts on social media sites that appear to offer vouchers or gift cards, especially sites offering deals too good to be true, such as a free $500 gift card. Some may pose as holiday promotions or contests. It may even appear one of your friends shared the link with you. If so, it is likely your friend was duped by the scam after it was sent to them by one of their friends. Oftentimes, these scams lead to online surveys designed to steal personal information.

When purchasing gift cards online, be leery of auction sites selling discounted or bulk offers of gift cards. When purchasing gift cards in the store, examine the protective scratch-off area on the back of the card to see if it has been tampered with.

Be on the lookout for mobile applications designed to steal your personal information from your smartphone. Such apps are often disguised as games and are often offered for free. Research the company selling or giving away the app and look online for third party reviews before installing an app from an unknown source.

Tickets to theater, concerts, and sporting events are always popular gifts during the holidays. If you purchase or receive tickets as a gift, do not post pictures of the tickets to social media sites. Protect the barcodes on tickets as you would your credit card number. Fraudsters will create a ticket using the barcode obtained from searching around social media sites and resell the ticket. You should never allow the barcode to be seen on social media. If you are in need of extra cash at this time of year, beware of sites and posts offering work you can do from the comfort of your own home. Often, the work from home opportunities rely on convenience as a selling point for applicants with an unscrupulous motivation behind the posting. You should carefully research the job posting and individuals or company contacting you for employment.

As a consumer, if you feel you are a victim of an Internet-related crime, you may file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.IC3.gov.

Here are some additional tips you can use to avoid becoming a victim of cyber fraud:

  • Check your credit card statement routinely.
  • Protect your credit card numbers from “wandering eyes.”
  • Do not respond to unsolicited (spam) e-mail.
  • Do not click on links contained within an unsolicited e-mail.
  • Be cautious of e-mail claiming to contain pictures in attached files, as the files may contain viruses. Only open attachments from known senders. Scan the attachments for viruses if possible.
  • Avoid filling out forms contained in e-mail messages that ask for personal information.
  • Always compare the link in the e-mail to the link you are actually directed to and determine if they actually match and lead you to a legitimate site.
  • Log on directly to the official website for the business identified in the e-mail instead of linking to it from an unsolicited e-mail. If the e-mail appears to be from your bank, credit card issuer, or other company you deal with frequently, your statements or official correspondence from the business will provide the proper contact information.
  • If you are requested to act quickly or there is an emergency, it may be a scam. Fraudsters create a sense of urgency to get you to act quickly.
  • Verify any requests for personal information from any business or financial institution by contacting them using the main contact information on their official website.
FBI San Diego November 13, 2015
  • Darrell Foxworth (858) 320-8302

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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