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SPRINGFIELD, IL - The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has confirmed the first West ...
CHICAGO, IL - Better Business Bureau is warning cell phone users about a new scam ...
  The City of Chicago's Department of Finance  is forcing me to pay money I do not ...
The NAACP is pleased the NBA is taking swift and strong action against Los Angeles ...
Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau welcomes the 105th National Baptist Congress to sunny ...
Virginia, Beach, VA (BlackNews.com) – Stu Gardner is the award-winning songwriter and composer of ...
  36 communities across 29 Illinois counties receive public infrastructure funds   SPRINGFIELD, IL - The Illinois Department ...
Nicor Gas is reaching out to the community and media to inform the public about ...
WASHINGTON - While U.S. Senator Mark Kirk said he shares the President's optimism that America's ...

Archive for March 19th, 2018

Madigan Assigns Teams to Monitor Primary Elections

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS
CHICAGO, IL — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced that 178 teams of assistant attorneys general and investigators from her office will be monitoring primary elections throughout Illinois on Tuesday, March 20, to ensure that voters’ rights are protected and polling places are accessible.
Madigan urged voters to call her office if they encounter suspected improper or illegal activity.
Chicago voters can call 1-866-536-3496 (TTY 1-800-964-3013).
Downstate voters can call 1-866-559-6812 (TTY 1-877-844-5461).
Attorney General Madigan reminded voters of some of their basic voting rights:
  • Voters have the right to vote if they are in line when the polls close at 7 p.m. or at any other time between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Election Day (10 ILCS 5/17-1).
  • If a voter makes a mistake or “spoils” a paper ballot and the voter has not cast the ballot, the voter has the right to receive a replacement ballot (10 ILCS 5/17-11).
  • If a voter cannot read, has trouble understanding English, or has a disability, that voter has the right to request assistance from anyone other than his or her employer, an agent of his or her employer, or an officer or agent of his or her union (10 ILCS 5/17-14).
  • Voters have the right to take unpaid time from work to vote, but no more than two successive hours, as long as they have applied with their employer before Election Day. The employer may set the time of day (10 ILCS 5/17-15).
  • No one is allowed to try to influence a voter within 100 feet of the polling place (10 ILCS 5/17-29).

49th Ward Recommendations for Tuesday’s Election

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 20th) is Primary Election Day.  If you haven’t done so already, please vote.  Polls will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

To find your polling place location, CLICK HERE and type in your address only.  Please note some polling place locations have changed since the last election, so it’s always a good idea to verify your location before you go to vote.

You also can vote early today (Monday) at sites across the City, including the Pottawattomie Park Fieldhouse, 7340 N. Rogers (open 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) and downtown at 16 W. Adams (open 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.).

For a list of our recommended candidates in the Democratic Primary, scroll to the bottom of this e-mail. They are the candidates endorsed by the members of the 49th Ward Democratic Party.

In the 49th Ward Democratic Party, the members of the party, not the elected officials, make the endorsement decisions.  They are progressive-minded volunteers, not paid political workers. They make their endorsement decisions after hearing from all the candidates in an open and democratic process.

Print the list and take it to the polls–or display it on your Smart Phone when you vote–to help you make an informed decision.

When you vote, you will notice one of the races for Water Reclamation District Commissioner has no candidates listed. This is due to the unexpected death of Commissioner Tim Bradford, who passed away just a day before the candidate filing deadline. As a result, the vacancy in his seat can be filled only by a write-in candidate.

We are supporting Barack Obama’s Great Lake’s Liaison, Cam Davis, who is endorsed by the Sierra Club, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, and Water Reclamation District Commissioner Debra Shore.

Here’s how you write (or type) in Cam Davis’ name:

When you get to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District portion of the ballot, you will see “Vacancy of Bradford” with no candidates listed. This is where you write in Cam Davis’ name.

On a paper ballot: Write “Cam Davis” on the line between the arrows.

On a touch screen: Tap on the blank space under “No Candidate.” Using the keyboard, type “Cam Davis” and press “OK.”

Regardless of whom you support, we strongly encourage you to vote.

Sincerely,

JOE MOORE
Committeeman

DAVID KOGAN
President
49th Ward Democratic Party

STEPHANIE WILLIS
Vice President
49th Ward Democratic Party

The Endorsed Candidates of the 49th Ward Democratic Party 

Print this list and take it with you to the polls or refer to it on your smartphone when you vote

Governor and Lieutenant Governor
(3) Daniel Biss & Litesa E. Wallace

Attorney General
(8) Pat Quinn

Secretary of State
(16) Jesse White

Comptroller
(17) Susana A. Mendoza

Treasurer
(18) Michael W. Frerichs

U.S. Representative, 9th District
(21) Janice D. Schakowsky

State Central Committeewoman, 9th District
(31) Carol Ronen

State Central Committeeman, 9th District
(32) Michael Cabonargi

State Representative, 14th District
(52) Kelly M. Cassidy

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Full 6-Year Term (Vote for 3)
(62) Debra Shore
(63) Kari K. Steele
(64) Martin J. Durkan

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Unexpired 2-Year Term
(69) Kimberly Neely Dubuclet

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Commissioners (Bradford Vacancy)
Write (or type) in “Cam Davis”

President of County Board
(71) Toni Preckwinkle

County Clerk
(73) Karen A. Yarbrough

County Sheriff
(76) Thomas J. Dart

County Treasurer
(79) Maria Pappas

County Assessor
(81) Frederick “Fritz” Kaegi

County Commissioner, 10th District
(91) Bridget Gainer

County Commissioner, 13th District
(92) Larry Suffredin

Board of Review, 2nd District
(101) Michael Cabonargi

Judge of the Circuit Court
(121) Oran F. Whiting (Vacancy of Brewer)
(127) Jonathan Clark Green (Vacancy of Clay)
(130) Tom Sam Sianis (Vacancy of Dooling)
(133) Rosa Maria Silva (Vacancy of Egan)
(134) Thomas F. McGuire (Vacancy of Dunford)
(136) Preston Jones, Jr. (Vacancy of Flanagan)
(139) Cecilia Anne Horan (Vacancy of Hartigan)
(141) Clare Joyce Quish  (Vacancy of Jordan)
(145) Peter Michael Gonzalez (Vacancy of McGinnis)
(147) Jack Hagerty (Vacancy of Prendergast Rooney)

Judge, 8th Subcircuit
(151) James “Jamie” Shapiro (Vacancy of Fabri)
(157) Lindsay Huge (Vacancy of Liu)
(161) Jeanne Marie Wrenn (Vacancy of Pethers)

Advisory Referenda

“Shall the State of Illinois legalize the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, testing, and sale of marijuana and marijuana products for recreational use by adults 21 and older subject to state regulation, taxation and local ordinance?”

Vote “YES”

“Should Governor Rauner act to protect the 650,000 Illinois residents who obtained health insurance through the Affordable Care Act by supporting legislation amending the Illinois Insurance Code to preserve important benefits like pediatric services and maternity care, and by investing in outreach campaigns to encourage residents to sign up for health insurance?”

Vote “YES”

“Should Governor Rauner support Illinois legislation to ban firearm bump stocks and strengthen penalties on illegal gun traffickers?”

Vote “YES”

“Should the State of Illinois develop a comprehensive strategy to address the recent rise in opioid-related and heroin-related deaths including committing additional state resources for addiction treatment and requiring health insurers to cover opioid alternatives and limitations on prescription length?”

Vote “YES”

Chicago Police Department Abuse Threatens Immigrant Safety

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

From: PASO – West Suburban Action Project 

A Press conference and rally in support of Gabriel Solache and Arturo de Leon Reyes, bothvictims of wrongful imprisonment and police torture facing deportation by Immigration andCustoms Enforcement (ICE). Mr. Solache and Mr. Reyes are requesting that the Chicago PoliceDepartment and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office sign U visa certifications on their behalf stating the fact that they are victims of abuse at the hands of the Chicago PoliceDepartment.

The event will be held Monday, March 19, 2018, 10:00 AM, at the Thompson Center, 100 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601

Gabriel Solache , victim of police abuse recently exonerated for a crime he did notcommit after spending nearly 20 years in prison. Vân Huynh , Mr. Solache’s attorney, PASO -West Suburban Action Project. Karen Daniels , Mr. Solache’s post-conviction relief attorney,Center on Wrongful Convictions of Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. Mecole Jordan ,Executive Director, United Congress for Community & Religious Organizations.

Mr. Solache and Mr. Reyes were exonerated after having been wrongfully convicted andserving nearly 20 years in prison. They will be filing requests with Chicago Police Departmentand the Cook County State’s Attorney’s for U visa certifications. U visas are available for victimsof certain violent crimes and the certification is one of the many requirements to apply forprotection from deportation. Groups call on Chicago Police Department and Cook CountyState’s Attorney’s office to sign U visa certification requests on behalf of two immigrants facingdeportation as a result of police abuse and torture.

PASO – West Suburban Action Project (Proyecto de Acción de los Suburbios del Oeste) is a community-based socialjustice organization that works to engage community members to address issues that affect them, their families, and neighbors with the mission to build stronger communities where all residents can live dignified lives regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic or immigration status.

National Urban League Pushes to Save Low-Cost Internet Service Program for Low-Income Americans

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON, DC  – The National Urban League joined by the National Action Network, OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, and the Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council announced its submission of comments late last week to the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) expressing concern over proposed reforms to Lifeline, a program that historically provides a discount on phone service to qualifying low-income consumers to increase access to telephone and broadband services and help close the digital divide.  However, last year, the FCC voted to approve changes to Lifeline that will make it harder for poor and low-income people to attain phone and internet services in attempt crack down on fraud and abuse in the program.

 

Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League said, “Broadband is no longer a luxury.  Everyone, no matter their socioeconomic status, must have access to advanced telecommunications and information services.  Just as we need food and water, it is now a necessity.  The FCC must explore ways to responsibly expand access not rescind it.”

The group’s full letter can be found HERE

February 21, 2018

 

Ms. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary

Federal Communications Commission

445 12th Street, SW

Washington, DC 20554

 

RE: WC Docket No. 17-287, Bridging the Digital Divide for Low-Income Consumers

WC Docket No. 11-42, Lifeline and Link Up Reform and Modernization

WC Docket No. 09-197, Telecommunications Carriers Eligible for Universal Service Support

 

 

Dear Secretary Dortch:

 

On behalf of the National Urban League, the National Action Network, OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, the Multicultural Media and Internet Council, and the millions of Americans we represent, we write today to express our concerns with the Fourth Report and Order, Order on Reconsideration, Memorandum Opinion and Order, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Notice of Inquiry, released on December 1, 2017 in the above-captioned proceedings. The National Urban League has long been a proponent of actions that promote universal broadband adoption and access to telecommunications services, including through the Lifeline program. We recognize the nexus between technology-enabled opportunity and our historic mission: to enable African Americans and other underrepresented, economically-disadvantaged urban residents to obtain economic self-reliance, parity, power and civil rights. Without access to a phone and broadband service, low income Americans lose opportunities to pursue employment; are unable to reach emergency care (such as E-911 service); are unable to communicate with government departments and agencies, including those who provide essential services; and are unable to participate in the information economy. In addition, while the Commission has often spoken to its desires to close the Digital Divide, the proposal in the above-captioned proceedings means that 3.5 million of the 12 million Lifeline participants will no longer receive broadband services. We are especially concerned about several aspects of the FCC proposal.

 

Specifically, we strongly oppose the Commission’s proposal to eliminate wireless resellers from participation in the Lifeline program. By excluding 70 percent of those currently providing Lifeline services, that proposed change will have a devastating impact on choice and competition in the Lifeline market and discourage consumer participation by making it harder for the very beneficiaries of the program – low-income consumers – to subscribe to and maintain Lifeline services. By limiting Lifeline to facilities-based carriers, low-income consumers will be largely deprived of Lifeline-subsidized wireless services.

 

Today, most low-income urban residents enrolled in Lifeline have chosen to receive service from wireless Lifeline providers, mostly resale providers. Those providers’ services are widely chosen because they deliver the value that low-income households need and the mobility that they want. In an era when mobility is essential to fully enable participation in the digital economy, the FCC’s proposal amounts to a giant step backward by confining Lifeline benefits to landline telecommunications service. By taking away Lifeline customers’ option of receiving subsidized mobile services, the Commission’s proposal will make Lifeline services less attractive to potential low-income subscribers and therefore will reduce program participation by those who are eligible. It is our belief that whether a service provider should be allowed to remain in the Lifeline program should depend on that provider’s conduct, and the quality of service they provide, not on whether that provider delivers service over a network it owns or by reselling other carriers’ services. Lifeline consumers make carrier selection decisions based on the providers’ performance and the perceived value of the providers’ services, not on the providers’ regulatory classification as “facilities-based” or “reseller.” Those consumers’ ability to select their Lifeline providers based on perceived service quality and value should not be stripped away by regulatory dictate.

 

Furthermore, we know that only one of the four national wireless network operators even offers Lifeline service. If wireless resellers are excluded from the Lifeline program, there will be only one wireless Lifeline option available to Lifeline-eligible consumers, notwithstanding the fact that Lifeline consumers overwhelmingly prefer wireless Lifeline options. A wireless Lifeline market of one provider is antithetical to a competitive marketplace, which has been the hallmark of Commission regulatory policy for decades. Poor consumers are no less deserving of a choice of competitive service options than are other consumers. Most of the innovations in Lifeline service offerings have been by wireless resellers. Removal of those providers from the Lifeline market and the resulting establishment of a de facto wireless Lifeline monopoly will remove any incentive for further innovation in that important Lifeline market segment. The fact that there have been no indications that facilities-based wireless providers have any desires to provide such services buttresses the concerns that consumers will be negatively impacted by this de facto monopoly.

 

We also point out that the Commission’s effort to allow the states to determine who qualifies as an eligible telecommunications carrier exacerbates the concern that the proposed rules decrease competition and consumer choice. By failing to, at a minimum, provide a single standard by which the states shall be required to make such assessments, the Commission has effectively created a 50 state patchwork of regulations that potential Lifeline providers will have to navigate. This increased regulatory burden only discourages new entrants to the market, particularly those unable to pay the costs associated with the increased regulatory structure. If the Commission believes the states should make such determinations, then the Commission should not only standardize the requirements, but streamline the process so as to foster greater participation of Lifeline providers.

 

We understand that part of the basis for the proposed changes, including the proposed wireless reseller exclusion, is in response to the May 2017 report of the Government Accountability Office (“Additional Action Needed to Address Significant Risks in FCC’s Lifeline Program”). While the report described the existence of fraud in the program, nowhere in that report are wireless resellers identified as the only or even primary cause of that fraud. Moreover, the data used in that GAO report is stale and of little current relevance since those data were compiled prior to the Commission’s 2016 Lifeline reform rules. As the Energy & Commerce Democratic Staff Report found last year, the FCC has already reined in a billion dollars in waste, fraud, and abuse that was allowed under the Lifeline program. In fact, much of the GAO’s investigation took place before the FCC adopted its latest reforms. The GAO’s report confirms the need for the FCC to act on our recommendations as quickly as possible, but the GAO did not look to end the program or to drive resellers out of the program.

 

Neither will a cap on Lifeline expenditures as proposed curtail waste, fraud, and abuse in the program: any such cap does not distinguish between legitimate growth in Lifeline participation attributable to the program’s expansion to cover broadband services or to increased demands in Lifeline services during an economic downturn from growth caused by fraudulent acts. The only thing such a cap would do is preclude eligible low-income households from receiving Lifeline assistance for which they are qualified, for no reason other than that the annual cap amount has been reached.

 

Mandatory minimum charges as proposed by the Commission will also drive many low-income households out of the program. As the Commission and Lifeline providers learned through the broadband pilot projects following the 2012 Lifeline reform order, many low-income households cannot or will not pay discounted charges since even a few dollars a month is a burden and many have no practical means of making the payments. Lifeline providers receive a standard per customer subsidy of $9.25 per month. Some providers choose to provide that subsidy to their Lifeline customers through discounts below their standard service rates. Other providers have chosen to provide the subsidy to their consumers in the form of $9.25 of no-charge service. Based upon the large number of low-income consumers who have enrolled in such programs, no-charge wireless Lifeline programs enjoy wide consumer acceptance because, in large part, even the lowest income consumers can afford them. The Commission should not render those Lifeline plans unavailable.

 

By turning the Lifeline program’s focus away from connecting the poor, generally, and focusing the program on rural areas, the Commission’s proposal also ignores the reality that today’s poverty rate for people in urban areas (16.0%) is higher than the poverty rate of those residing in rural areas (13.3%) and that there are millions of urban poor who rely on the Lifeline service daily. Forty-two states have higher poverty rates among people living in urban areas than those living in rural areas. Lifeline should not be made into a rural versus urban service, but should be an American service that provides assistance to all Americans in need.

For these reasons, we urge you to reconsider your proposals to reform Lifeline.

 

Marc H. Morial

 

President and Chief Executive Officer

National Urban League

John C. Yang

President and Executive Director

Asian Americans Advancing Justice – AAJC

Reverend Al Sharpton

Founder & President

National Action Network

Kenneth L. Lee

Chief Executive Officer

OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocate

Maurita Coley

Acting President and CEO

Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council

 

Republican Jews Run Black Democrats?

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

 
OpEd by Richard B. Muhammad

In one of the more bizarre cases of American politics, a Jewish Republican group called on seven Black Democrats in Congress to step down in repudiation of Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan over false charges of anti-Semitism. Several of the Black congressional leaders obeyed and denounced Min. Farrakhan.

The Republican Jewish Coalition, which seeks “to foster and enhance ties between the American Jewish community and Republican decision makers,” made the demand. “We work to sensitize Republican leadership in government and the Party to the concerns and issues of the Jewish community, while articulating and advocating Republican ideas and policies within the Jewish community,” the RJC added.

Nowhere in the RJC mission is there a commitment to bi-partisanship, nor recognition of any interests except the interests of Jewish people and Israel.
Yet the group devoted to Jewish and Republican interests saw fit to order Black Caucus members to repudiate meeting with a man who has worked on behalf of Black people for over 62 years?
Clearly the only thing that matters is the Jewish part of any so-called Black-Jewish relationship. Blacks don’t have a right to forge their own agendas or to even meet among themselves-which are apparently rights reserved for Zionist Jews.
And, apparently, Jewish concerns even outrank party loyalties and naked attempts to hurt Blacks inside the Democratic Party. So powerful are the Jewish Republicans that not only do they keep Republicans in line, they also have enough juice to force Blacks who are Democrats to toe the line too.
You find no common interests between these groups as the RJC was virulently anti-Barack Obama, the first Black president, and literally spent millions trying to defeat him.
If the RJC had its way, you would have never had that Black man in the White House.
But wait, there’s more. There’s the RJC’s sacred defend-Israel-at-all-costs commitment without a commitment to justice for all. And, when it comes to racist-in-chief Donald Trump, the RJC even refused to criticize the president for a 2017 statement on International Holocaust Remembrance Day that failed to mention Jews. Others took the Donald to task, but not the RJC.
This is the same Donald Trump that called African nations and Haiti shithole countries, urged a crowd to beat a Black Lives Matter protester (a Black man who was actually assaulted and then arrested) at a pro-Trump campaign event, and who had to figure out White supremacists and the killing of a young White women at a protest in Charlottesville, Va., was wrong.
Mr. Trump fed into the hysteria that led to five young Black and Latino men going to jail in the 1989 Central Park jogger case in New York, though they were innocent. Mr. Trump claimed the young men were still guilty after they were released.
That the men were paid a $41 million settlement in 2014 meant nothing. In 2016, presidential candidate Trump declared the men were still guilty. At the height of trial hysteria, Mr. Trump took out a full-page ad saying New York should bring back the death penalty. Then there were those Trump lawsuits for housing discrimination and charges because he didn’t want to rent to Blacks in the 1970s.
So clearly there is no affinity between these lawmakers and the RJC’s love fest with Mr. Trump, who is essentially reviled by the Congressional Black Caucus.
Maybe it’s the RJC protect-Israel-at-all-costs mantra that fits with the politics of these Black congressmen? Not really. Rep. Andre Carson of Indiana, who was called out by the RJC, conducted a TV interview on FOX 59 in his home state. During the March 9 broadcast, Rep. Carson admitted to meeting with the Minister to discuss important issues. What about the RJC demand he step down?
“That organization doesn’t have any credibility with me. I know they have a political agenda,” said Rep. Carson. “The Congressional Black Caucus is asking that organization to condemn (Israeli Prime Minister) Benjamin Netanyahu and the (Israeli) government for discriminating against Africans who are migrating, who are fleeing dictatorships, who are fleeing oppression. There’s a great deal of bigotry and racism happening right now they fail to condemn.”
So African migrants in Israel are suffering, threatened with deportation and jail, the Black Caucus asked the RJC for help and heard crickets? What kind of fake Black-Jewish relationship is this? And, while Israel is kicking Black Africans out of Israel, she is blocking Ethiopian Jews from reuniting with family members living in the so-called Jewish state, which seems to welcome White Jews Only.
Yet these Jewish Republicans had the gall to demand that congressional representatives Carson, Maxine Waters of California, Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Danny Davis of Illinois, Al Green of Texas, Barbara Lee of California and Gregory Meeks of New York condemn Min. Farrakhan. Sadly lawmakers Ellison, Davis, Lee and Meeks had done just that by Final Call press time.
It’s enough to be on the Democratic plantation, but when your masters come over from the Republican plantation that should be more than any self-respecting Black man and woman should stand. So the only bi-partisan thing for a Negro politician to do is join with Jewish Republicans to denounce Min. Farrakhan?
Sad. Shameful. But proof once again that the Negro has no political interests nor political power that the White Man, the Jewish Man, is bound to respect.
Or do we have no political power at all?
Richard B. Muhammad is editor-in-chief of The Final Call newspaper. He can be reached through www.finalcall.com and at editor@finalcall.com. Find him on Facebook at Richard B. Muhammad and on Twitter: @RMfinalcall. His website is www.richardmuhammad.com.
For more information, contact:
Straight Words column by 
Richard B. Muhammad, 
312-480-9775

 

Raoul: Governor’s Veto of Gun Dealer Licensing Unconscionable

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL —  Illinois State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago 13th) issued the following statement in response to Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of the Gun Dealer Licensing Act:

“It’s unconscionable for the governor to take this action when gun violence continues to plague communities across our state.

“This is a personal issue for me. I have experienced gun violence just outside my front door on multiple occasions while my children were home, and I have close friends who lost children to gun violence within blocks of my home.

“We license all sorts of professions: physicians, lawyers, pharmacists – even dog groomers and barbers. It’s not an unreasonable request to license firearm dealers. The vast majority of voters support this measure on a bipartisan basis, and the governor turned his back on all of them today.

Fayette County Brothers Sentenced to Federal Prison for Roles in Drug Trafficking Conspiracy

Posted by Admin On March - 19 - 2018 ADD COMMENTS

BECKLEY, W.Va. – Two Fayette County brothers were sentenced to federal prison today on drug charges, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart. Cheyenne Fragale, 30, and Macon Fragale, 34, both from Boomer, previously entered guilty pleas to conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine, a quantity of oxycodone, and a quantity of heroin.  Cheyenne Fragale was sentenced to 144 months in federal prison, while Macon Fragale was determined to be a career offender and was sentenced to 200 months in federal prison.   U.S. Attorney Stuart commended the investigative efforts of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Beckley Police Department on these cases.

U.S. Attorney Stuart commended the cooperative investigative efforts of several agencies, led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Raleigh County Drug and Violent Crime Task Force. The Drug Enforcement Administration, the Beckley Police Department, the Raleigh County Sheriff’s Department, the West Virginia State Police, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the United States Postal Inspection Service also provided assistance throughout the investigation.

“Prison time awaits those who peddle poison in our communities,” said U.S. Attorney Stuart. “These two brothers are not a good example for the model family.  Their smorgasbord  of drug dealing from meth, to pills to heroin  has one spending the next 12 years behind bars and the other even longer.  The message is, “Don’t sell drugs.””

Cheyenne and Macon Fragale previously admitted that between May 2017 and June 28, 2017, they took part in a drug trafficking conspiracy with multiple participants. They also admitted that during the course of the conspiracy, they distributed over 2,000 thirty mg tablets of oxycodone and over 500 grams of methamphetamine, as well as heroin. They additionally admitted that they sold the drugs in and around Fayette County. On June 28, 2017, law enforcement executed search warrants at several locations associated with the conspiracy. During the execution of the search warrants, officers seized over 300 grams of crystal methamphetamine, as well as heroin, fentanyl, and over $29,000 in cash. The methamphetamine was later laboratory tested and confirmed to be 94% pure. Cheyenne Fragale admitted that the cash was proceeds from drug dealing. As part of their plea agreements, Cheyenne and Macon Fragale both admitted to all the drug trafficking activity charged in the indictment.

Several individuals implicated as a result of this investigation have entered guilty pleas to drug charges and are awaiting sentencing. Velarian Carter, of Beckley, faces a mandatory minimum of not less than 20 years and up to life in federal prison when he is sentenced on April 17, 2018. Dominic Copney, of Beckley, faces a mandatory minimum of five and up to 40 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on April 17, 2018. Detria Carter, of Beckley, faces a mandatory minimum sentence of not less than five and up to 40 years in federal prison when she is sentenced on April 24, 2018. Donald Scalise, of Montgomery, faces up to 20 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on April 25, 2018. Tiffany Ramsey, of Boomer, faces at least five years and up to 40 years in federal prison when she is sentenced on May 2, 2018. Shawn Akiem Anderson, of Mt. Hope, faces up to 10 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on May 29, 2018.   Rory White, of Montgomery, faces at least five years and up to 40 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on June 6, 2018.

Karl Funderburk, of Teays Valley, who previously pled guilty to a gun charge, faces at least 5 years and up to life in federal prison for using and carrying a firearm during a drug trafficking crime when he is sentenced on May 29, 2018.

Shaun Jones of Beckley has entered a guilty plea to possession with intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin.  Jonathan Moore, also of Beckley, has entered a guilty plea to possession with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine. Each faces at least five years and up to 40 years in federal prison when they are sentenced on May 29, 2018.

Corey Larkin, of Beckley, previously entered a plea to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine and more than 100 grams of heroin.  He also faces at least five years and up to 40 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on June 5, 2018.

Esau Burnette, of Beckley, has entered a plea to conspiracy to manufacture, distribute, and possess with intent to distribute more than 28 grams of cocaine base and a quantity of cocaine.  He faces at least five years and up to 40 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on May 30, 2018.  James Rodney Staples, of Woodbridge, Virginia, faces at least 10 years in federal prison and up to life when he is sentenced on May 30, 2018 after entering a plea to conspiracy to distribute or possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine, more than 280 grams of cocaine base, and more than one kilogram of heroin.

Assistant United States Attorney Timothy D. Boggess handled the prosecutions.  United States District Judge Irene C. Berger imposed the sentences.

These cases are being prosecuted as part of an ongoing effort led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illicit sale and misuse of illegal drugs. The U.S. Attorney’s Office, joined by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, is committed to aggressively pursuing and shutting down pill trafficking, eliminating open air drug markets, and curtailing the spread of illegal drugs in communities across the Southern District.

 

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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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