When Youssef Abdel-Gawad heard a man with a gun attempting to break into his house in Huntington Station last August, he fired back at the intruders, one of whom was struck by the bullet and later died.
Now, despite his attorney’s insisting that it was a clear case of self-defense, Abdel-Gawad, 25, has been indicted on manslaughter charges.
In court on Monday, Abdel-Gawad pleaded not guilty to charges of second degree manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.
Abdel-Gawad’s family has shared surveillance video footage of the Aug. 21 incident, which shows five alleged burglars trying to break into their home.
As four of the men hid behind a metal shed in the backyard, one approached the sliding door at the rear of the house Abdel-Gawad shared with his brother and parents.
News 12 Long Island reports that one of the burglars pulled out a gun and a flash appeared, which seemed to be the burglar firing into the house.
A confrontation ensued at the door, and the men fled the scene. As the men fled onto an adjoining property, Abdel-Gawad fired two shots at the group. Jazzmen Bryant, 33, was hit by a bullet, and died later.
Prosecutors have said that no bullets were recovered at the scene, making it difficult to determine if the alleged burglar did fire shots into the home.
At court on Monday in Riverhead, Abdel-Gawad’s mother insisted that her son was just trying to protect his family; she stated that he is a good young man with aspirations of becoming a police officer.
Prosecutors asked that Abdel-Gawad be held on $50,000 bail. The judge, however, deemed that he could be released without bail if he surrendered his passport and wore a tracking device.
The case is set to return to court later this week.
Abdel-Gawad has a criminal history. In 2011, he pleaded guilty to unlawfully fleeing a police officer, for which he was sentenced to 60 days in jail.
Photo Source: http://northport.patch.com
Everyone, meet Tom.
Tom is a badass 84-year-old Marine who recently chased two burglars out of his house. Sure, the burglars managed to steal a few things from his home, but he didn’t let them get away without dishing out a little payback.
Tom told New Mexico news station KOAT that he woke up with a gun in his face while his house was being robbed.
“Four times, my life was threatened in a way,” he said. Tom referred to the gun he woke up staring into as “a large revolver, it wasn’t no small one you put in a purse.”
“They came in, they point the gun and I just stood my ground,” Tom said.
At one point one of the thieves held Tom on the ground and tried to choke him with a radio cord.
“He tried to tie it around my neck, the radio cord,” Tom said.
That’s when he retaliated by hitting the criminal in a place no man ever wants to be hit.
“I just took my fist and [punching motion] because he’s right my height. You know if I’m nearly on the floor and he’s standing, it’s the right height for the groin.”
Albuquerque police have already caught one suspect, identified as Jose Gomez, and are still searching for the second.
Just goes to show you that even at 84, Marines still find a way to get the job done.
Over the past few months the “Knockout game” has made it into the headlines on more than one occasion. The New York Police Department recently began cracking down heavily on individuals involved with the game or similar attacks in order to ensure that the trend does not grow.
One Brooklyn man charged with assault for striking seven women during the “knockout game” hysteria is claiming that his attacks were carried out in self-defense. The man, 35-year-old Barry Baldwin, attacked the women on seven different occasions in various Brooklyn locations between Nov. 7 and Dec. 27, the NY Post reports.
Baldwin’s self-defense claims do not have much weight behind them, as they are all strange statements with little connection to his own personal safety.
“I was passing by a lady using a phone and I hit her head in self-defense because of the way she looked,” Baldwin wrote in a court statement about one attack.
When explaining a different attack, Baldwin claimed he acted in self-defense because a 33-year-old mother who was walking with her 7-year-old daughter almost made him spill his coffee.
“There was a Dunkin’ Donuts beverage in his hand and the woman almost bumped his coffee so he swatted, but didn’t attack her,” the court papers read, “Defendant stated it wasn’t a whipping, but he was trying to protect his drink. It was just a love tap.”
Baldwin’s other attacks include punching two elderly women that were sitting on a park bench on Christmas Eve. One of the women was 78 years old. According to the New York Daily News, Baldwin claimed he struck these women because he “was feeling ill.”
Baldwin pleaded not guilty to the assault charges against him and he was released from the New York Supreme Court on a $13,500 bond.
Florida’s infamous Stand Your Ground law may be invoked again soon.
The incident involves shooter Claudius Smith, 32, and deceased man Ricardo Sanes, 21.
Smith told Orlando police that he was in his home last Thursday when his girlfriend grabbed his attention. She said she was looking at an outdoor surveillance monitor and saw a man in dark clothing wandering around their yard.
Smith told police the man was seen “climbing over the fence” into their yard. Due to a recent string of burglaries at his property, Smith decided to confront the man.
According to the police report, Smith claims “he was certain the unknown male was responsible [for the burglaries]…he began to chase him.”
Smith said he left his property armed with a .45-caliber handgun and spotted Sanes peering into windows of apartments as he passed by them. Smith confronted Sanes with his gun drawn. When Sanes tried to run, Smith admits he grabbed the man by the sweatshirt and tried to bring him back to his apartment.
Then, according to Smith, Sanes punched him in the mouth and tried to grab his gun. Fearing Sanes was armed, Smith retaliated and fired six rounds into Sanes' body. He died immediatley. Smith claims he shot the man out of self-defense. A gun was later found in Sanes’ pants by police.
A preliminary examination of Sanes’ body revealed bullet holes in his upper back and the back of his neck. Some have called into question whether bullet holes on Sanes’ backside indicate that he was fleeing from Smith – not confronting him – when he was shot.
This combined with the fact that Smith admitted to confronting the man and initiating their physical conflict, could spoil his chances of successfully invoking the Stand Your Ground Law. Here’s what Orlando defense attorney Richard Hornsby had to say about the situation.
“If (Smith) didn’t have probable cause to detain this guy, or make a citizen’s arrest, then everything he did was illegal and he has no ‘stand your ground’ defense,” Hornsby said. But, he admits, defendants “seem to know what to say to at least give them a benefit of a doubt when it comes to invoking the ‘stand your ground’ law.”
Smith has not invoked the law at this time, and neither he nor his legal team has said if they plan to. As it currently stands, Smith has been charged with second-degree murder with a firearm.
When two men abducted and raped a 20-year-old girl, intending to kill her, she fought back, stabbing one of her abductors and escaping to a nearby ice cream shop. Yakiri Aupart Ruby Rubio’s ordeal, however, is far from over; she was arrested for killing her abductor, and now waits in jail.
On December 29, the streets of Mexico City filled with protestors demanding she be freed.
Brothers Miguel Angel Rodriguez Anaya and Luis Omar Anaya took the girl to a hotel room on December 19, 2013, where they tortured her sexually and physically. After raping her, Miguel Anaya, preparing to kill her, stabbed the girl; but Yakiri fought for control of the knife, and stabbed her attacker instead.
Both men fled from the room. Miguel Angel Anaya died from the injury.
The girl, half-clothed and screaming, ran to an ice cream shop, where she asked that someone call the police. Upon arrival, the police began their search for Yakiri’s assailants.
When they caught Luis Omar Anaya, Anaya accused the girl of killing his brother. The police arrested Yakiri, and she was sent to jail.
Apart from a paramedic treating the stab wound in her arm, she has received no further medical attention for her injuries. In addition, although Mexican law stipulates that rape victims be given a thorough examination for sexually transmitted diseases and an emergency contraception pill to prevent any possible pregnancies, Yakiri has been denied both.
Sources: Revolution News, Demotix
Photo Source: http://revolution-news.com
The stepson of Cedar Hill, Texas, Mayor Rob Franke was shot to death on Christmas Eve while breaking into a local home.
Joshua Slaven, 31, reportedly broke into the home of Gareth Long late Tuesday night by smashing through a bedroom window with a tree branch. Long and his wife woke up to a bang and realized that someone had broken into their home, so the man grabbed his gun and went to investigate.
Long discovered Slaven dripping wet in his home. He reportedly asked Slaven to leave, threatened him with the gun, and shot him dead.
“It’s very unfortunate that Mr. Long was forced into a position of having to defend himself, his wife and his home from a nighttime intruder,” said Long’s attorney Chris Knox. “Nobody ever asks to be placed in such a life-threatening position, but Mr. Long’s actions were absolutely justified and completely protected under Texas law.”
Slaven had previously been arrested in early November for misdemeanor assault at the Mayor’s home, and a protective order was put into place at that time. On Nov. 25, authorities say Slaven returned to his family’s home and tried to persuade them to let him in, but they refused. Slaven was again arrested for violating the protective order.
No charges have been filed against Long for killing Slaven, and it’s likely that the investigation will determine that he acted in self-defense.
A Texas company that insures gun owners has seen its business increase substantially since the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
“People who have seen what happened to Zimmerman began to consider their own circumstances and asked how would their life be affected if something like that happened to them,” said attorney Edwin Walker, cofounder of Texas Law Shield.
Texas Law Shield charges a base monthly fee of $11 to gun owners who act in self-defense to advise them during police investigations and represent them at trial. The company has a 24-hour hotline to assist its more than 70,000 members if they have questions, The Star-Telegram reported.
“There are about half-a-dozen crimes where a person can be charged if they simply display or discharge their weapon,” Walker said. “You don’t have to shoot someone to get in trouble.”
According to Mark Walters, a spokesman for the United States Concealed Carry Association, interest in the company has “phones ringing off the hook,” in the wake of the Zimmerman verdict.
“If someone’s carrying a firearm and they have to display or discharge their weapon and it is reported to police, they should anticipate charges being brought,” Walters said. “If you make a decision to carry a weapon, you should consider taking out one of these types of policies.”
Attorneys from Texas Law Shield successfully represented Darrell Schooler after he was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after he shot at a man outside a Fort Worth nightclub.
“This is insurance I thought I’d never have to use,” Schooler said. “Without it, I’d probably be in jail for something I didn’t do. God was with me that day. If I had leaned an inch-and-a-half to the left, I wouldn’t be talking to you now. That’s how close I came to getting my head blown off.”
Police responded to a call in Lawndale, Ill., after a report of shots fired. Witnesses told police that they saw an altercation between six men, which ended when one of the men fired two warning shots into the air.
Police eventually caught up to 20-year-old Marco Alvarado during the investigation. When the police approached Alvarado, the suspect allegedly kept his hands behind his back and refused to remove them when police asked him to. He also kept swaying back and forth “in a rapid fashion,” according to the report.
When police expressed their intent to bring Alvarado in on custody and traffic violations, Alvarado said, "I'm going to be real with you, I have the gun in my a--.” That’s about as real as it gets.
Officers then searched Alvarado and found a gun cradled between his cheeks.
Alvarado later confessed to shooting the gun into the air, arguing that he had to shoot the gun in order to protect his friend. He is being held on a $20,000 bail.
It is currently unclear whether Alvarado will have to defend himself in court for firing his weapon. Based on the eyewitness account, it is reasonable to believe Alvarado genuinely was attempting to protect himself and his friends by firing the weapon.
The charges that relate to discharging the weapon could be dropped, but the other crimes are another matter entirely. Concealed carry laws have not yet been enacted in Illinois, so hiding a gun inside one’s buttocks likely constitutes a violation of the state’s current concealed carry laws.
Should the police throw the book at Alvarado? Or, considering that news agencies across America are featuring this story, do you think that he’s already suffered enough?
Some teens got more than they bargained for when they attempted to break into a home in Lithonia, Ga.
According to reports, two teens approached a home and rang the doorbell while a third teen waited in a getaway vehicle. When nobody answered, the teens apparently thought the residence was empty, so they went around to the back door and attempted to break in. That is where they crossed paths with the homeowner, who just so happened to also be a gun owner.
The resident opened fire on the two teens, striking both of them. All three of the alleged thieves fled the scene – the two gunshot victims on foot and the driver in his getaway car.
One eyewitness described the event.
“They were in pretty bad shape," the witness said. "One had lacerations down his arm, his shirt was torn … he was losing a lot of blood.”
Another nearby resident told reporters about the homeowner.
“He protected his home, he protected his values," the neighbor said. "You know, those kids might’ve had a gun. They might’ve [come] in and shot him. So, he did the right thing.”
All three teens have been caught and will face charges for their alleged crimes. The resident, however, will not face any charges. The homeowner claimed that he did not have any other choice, and the available evidence seems to back up his claim.
Gun owner John Pina of Nashua, N.H., is in hot water with authorities after trying to break up a fight between two dogs.
According to reports, 46-year-old Pina was outside of his home when he spotted the dogs fighting. It is unclear whether or not one of the dogs belonged to Pina. In any event, Pina allegedly shot two rounds from his handgun into the air in order to scare off the dogs.
Nearby police responded to the sound of shots fired and promptly arrested Pina once they pieced together what had happened. They slapped him with a reckless endangerment charge, which is a class B felony.
Why all the fuss about two shots that did not hit anything? Well, as Isaac Newton taught the world, everything that goes up must come down. The bullets that were fired from Pina’s weapon could have fallen back to the Earth and hurt somebody. Luckily, nobody was injured as a result of Pina’s carelessness.
Pina probably should have simply fired the shots into the ground or – better yet – not fired any shots at all. It is unclear what exactly transpired between the two dogs, but it is somewhat difficult to justify shooting a gun because of a dog fight. Pina might have a better defense in court of one of the dogs belonged to Pina, and if that dog was seriously at risk of dying during the fight.
Pina’s relatively simple crime carries a hefty sentence. The maximum penalty for reckless endangerment is punishable by up to seven years in prison.
What do you think about Pina’s case? Should the state throw the book at Pina for risking the lives of everybody around him? Or is this a perfect example of no harm, no foul?