Kim Davis sat in a church pew on a Sunday morning about four years ago, listening as the man in the pulpit preached of forgiveness and God’s grace.
Davis until then might have seemed an unlikely candidate to wage a moral war over the institution of marriage. She has acknowledged through her attorney that she had made “major mistakes” before she was born again.
Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, right, talks with David Moore following her office’s refusal to issue marriage licenses at the Rowan County Courthouse in Morehead, Ky., Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015. Although her appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was denied, Davis still refuses to issue marriage licenses.
But that Sunday morning, as the preacher spoke from the book of Galatians, Davis — then 44 years old — repented and pledged the rest of her life to the service of the Lord.
Now as the Rowan County clerk, Davis is refusing to surrender in a battle over who can and can’t be wed. She invoked “God’s authority” Tuesday as she defied a series of federal court orders and once again denied marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Since the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage across the nation, couples have stood in her office and wept. They have shouted and called her a bigot. They have tried to reason with her.
But Davis, who usually wears a skirt that reaches her ankles and her hair to her waist, refuses to relent, even under the threat of a contempt of court charge, steep fines or jail time.
“She has found herself in a situation she never envisioned,” said Mat Staver, founder of the Christian law firm Liberty Counsel that is representing Davis in her bid to refuse marriage licenses.
After the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in June, Davis announced she would issue no more marriage licenses.
Four couples, two gay and two straight, sued her, arguing she must fulfill her duties as an elected official despite her personal Christian faith. U.S. District Judge David Bunning ordered her to issue the licenses, an appeals court affirmed that order, and the Supreme Court on Monday refused to intervene, leaving her no more legal options.
“It is a heaven or hell decision,” she said in a statement.
At the time she repented in the church pew, Davis had been divorced three times, according to court records. Her current husband, Joe Davis, arrived at the courthouse Tuesday to check in on his wife as a protest raged on the courthouse lawn. It’s been an ordeal for her, he said. People have threatened to kill her and set their house on fire.
Joe Davis, who described himself as “an old redneck hillbilly,” pointed to the rainbow-clad protesters on the opposite side of the lawn.
“They want us to accept their beliefs and their ways,” he said. “But they won’t accept our beliefs and our ways.”
He said he and his wife have been together 19 years, but declined to elaborate on how much of that time they’ve spent married.
Court records detail Kim Davis’ turbulent marital history: She has been married to her current husband twice, with a divorce and another husband in between.
She married her first husband, Dwain Wallace, when she was 18, and divorced him in 1994.
She acknowledged in a 2008 divorce filing having had two children in 1994 while she was not married.
In 1996, at age 30, she married Joe Davis for the first time. They divorced in 2006.
The next year, at 40 years old, Davis wed Thomas McIntryre, though their marriage lasted less than a year. She re-married Joe Davis in 2009.
“She made some mistakes,” Staver said. “She’s regretful and sorrowful. That life she led before is not the life she lives now. She asked for and received forgiveness and grace. That’s why she has such a strong conscience.”
On Tuesday morning, April Miller and Karen Roberts, tailed by television cameras and rival activists, were there Davis opened her office doors. They hoped Davis would accept that her fight was lost and issue the licenses.
Instead, Davis turned them away. On their way out, Miller and Roberts passed David Ermold and David Moore, 17 years a couple. “Denied again,” Roberts whispered in Moore’s ear.
Ermold said he almost wept. They demanded to talk to Davis, who emerged briefly on the other side of the counter.
“We’re not leaving until we have a license,” Ermold told her.
“Then you’re going to have a long day,” Davis replied. She retreated into her office, closed the door and shut the blinds as a tense standoff erupted in the office around her. Dozens from both sides of the issue packed into the lobby.
“Do your job,” marriage equality activists chanted.
“Stand firm,” Davis’ supporters shouted back. They compared her to the Biblical figures Paul and Silas, imprisoned for their faith and rescued by God.
But lawyers for the rejected couples, in asking the judge to hold her in contempt of court, requested that she not be sent to jail, and instead be issued a fine “sufficiently serious and increasingly onerous” to “compel her immediate compliance without delay.”
Bunning ordered Davis and her six deputy clerks to appear before him Thursday morning at the federal courthouse in Ashland.
County taxpayers pay Davis $80,000 as the elected clerk. Staver said Tuesday that she does not have a fortune squirreled away somewhere to pay whatever punishment Bunning hands down. But she also refuses to resign.
If your job creates such a moral dilemma, just fucking quit! Otherwise obey the laws and do your fucking job. Go to hell for obeying the law? Seriously?
It is close minded people like this that has hurt the religious groups and more people feel they have no credibility.
It happened Monday night when officers arrived at the wrong Atlanta address after a report of suspicious activity, shot the man who lives there, killed his dog and “likely” shot a fellow officer, leaving him seriously wounded, authorities said Tuesday.
The bloody misunderstanding began when DeKalb County police received a report of a possible burglary at a one-story residence near an intersection in southeast Atlanta. Lacking an exact address, the officers were sent in the dark to a neighborhood where many of the single-story homes look similar.
Three officers found a home they thought matched a description provided by a 911 caller, but were unable to make contact with anyone inside, according to a statement from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. They entered the home through an unlocked rear door and two officers fired their guns at a dog, killing it.
A man in the home who exited a room off the kitchen was also shot in the leg by police, GBI officials said. A police officer was shot in the hip and listed in serious condition at Grady Memorial Hospital. Police did not immediately identify the wounded resident or officer.
“Early investigation indicates that the injured officer was likely shot accidently by one of the other officers on the scene,” GBI officials said in a statement.
However, GBI spokesman Scott Dutton said it was too early to determine exactly who fired the gunshots. Dutton said he did not know if anyone in the home was armed besides the police. GBI officials said there is no evidence the residents there had committed any crimes.
The wounded man returned home early Tuesday, limping and wearing hospital scrubs, but declined to comment.
Colson, who lives two doors down from the home where the shooting erupted, said she was coming home from a walk when she saw police cars speed past and soon heard a series of gunshots.
Colson told The Associated Press that as she rounded the corner, she saw her wounded neighbor and his wife fleeing their home. The woman was screaming, Colson said, and her husband was yelling: “They shot me and they shot my dog!”
Colson said her neighbor had a bullet wound a couple of inches above his right knee.
She said she knelt beside him in the yard and used a shirt to staunch the bleeding as he told her what happened.
“He told me they were in the house watching television when they heard something in the backyard,” Colson said. “The husband gets up to check, opens the door and he just sees shooting. He gets hit and his dog is dead.”
She said police never questioned the neighbor while she was there helping him.
Derek Perez told The AP that he reported the suspicious person, but at a different house from the one the police entered. He said he was walking his dog when he saw a man knock on a neighbor’s door and then just stand in the yard. He said he then heard a loud noise, a dog barking and didn’t see the man anymore. There had been break-ins in the neighborhood recently, so he called 911, he said.
Bob Gilman, who lives nearby, said he heard police sirens Monday night, went outside and saw his neighbor sitting on the driveway, wounded. Gilman said police officers escorted him away before he could ask what had happened. He was stunned that officers had opened fire.
“If they say they had the wrong address, that’s very frightening,” Gilman said.
The wounded man’s dog, a brindle boxer, was large, playful and would run up to people. Gilman said the dog never attacked others. The wounded man’s home had been hit by previous break-ins, and the man told Gilman that he owned a shotgun and a handgun.
DeKalb County Police Chief Cedric Alexander said his agency would normally investigate a non-fatal shooting. But given the complicated circumstances, he said he asked the GBI to lead the probe involving his own officers’ actions.
Alexander acknowledged Monday night that DeKalb officers responded to the wrong home. All three officers have been placed on administrative leave.
Police officers have mistakenly forced their way inside homes before in Atlanta, at least once with deadly consequences.
In 2006, Atlanta police officers killed a 92-year-old woman during a botched drug raid at her house.
Now these guys are so messed up they are shooting each other in addition to the residents. SMH…….
Be sure to vote in the poll below…….
Rev. Al Sharpton has had a long “career” of making money off of racism. He is the definition of a race hustler, and has made millions of dollars. His efforts have caused riots and deaths, while his political connections have allowed him to avoid prosecution for not paying Federal taxes.
But the left-wing MSNBC news channel just gave him bad news. Instead of a daily show in prime time, he is being moved to Sunday at 8 am. Or, as one paper put it, Sharpton is being moved “from prime time to church time.” And instead of five hours of air time, he will be reduced to one.
Clearly, MSNBC isn’t happy with Sharpton’s ratings, but are scared to death to fire this guy. Hilariously, Sharpton ran to Twitter to make it sound like the move was his decision, and a promotion!
And he continued his nonsense in the NY Daily News:
Sharpton deflected a suggestion that he had been demoted.
“I’m very happy,” he said Wednesday. “First, I can reach a wider audience of people who don’t get home by 6 at night. Second, I can now get the A-list guests and newsmakers I want. And third, a Sunday morning host is what I always wanted to be.
“I never wanted to be a weeknight pundit. I wanted to be a Sunday morning newsmaker. I wanted to be Dr. Martin Luther King, not Larry King.”
Talk about delusional! This guy is a joke.
Will you set your alarm clock and wake up on Sunday to see Sharpton’s new show?
And there is more:
“PoliticsNation” MSNBC host Al Sharpton is in hot water for allegedly using his show to benefit labor groups that contributed to his nonprofit.
In the latest development of trading his influence for cash, Sharpton appears to have used his show for the benefit of labor unions. Not only did labor leaders frequently defend their positions as guests, Sharpton played significant lip service to them.
Now it would seem the very same labor groups have donated significantly to his nonprofit, National Action Network. According to Department of Labor records obtained by National Review Online, unions alone have contributed $2.38 million to his group. These union include the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the American Federation of Teachers and the Service Employees International Union.
Additionally, Sharpton has used his show to promote pro-union policies while criticizing those policies unions oppose like right-to-work. In May of 2014, Sharpton echoed claims by the Amalgamated Transit Union that the labor movement is a civil rights issues, just two months after the union contributed $15,000 to his nonprofit.
This isn’t the first time Sharpton has made questionable decisions with his money and nonprofit. On numerous occasions he has allegedly generated revenue for himself and his nonprofit with bribery. According to the New York Post, Sharpton agreed not to label some corporations as racist if they paid him.
With his considerable influence, especially with race issues, such a label could result in boycotts and protests while damaging a company’s reputation. For over a decade, Sharpton was able to coerce thousands of dollars out of companies with this method.
Sharpton has also been accused of dodging millions of dollars in taxes while advocating that everyone should pay more.
Sharpton was more vocal about trading airtime for contributions with his radio show but seemed to have dialed it back for his MSNBC show, possibly due to stricter rules. According to employee rules dictated by Comcast, one of the parent companies of NBC, his actions may have violated internal codes of ethics.
“We believe business decisions should be based on competitive factors. The offer or acceptance of gifts or business entertainment (as defined below) can create the appearance that business decisions are being influenced by other factors,” Comcast’s code of conduct book detailed. “Gifts or business entertainment should never be offered or accepted in order to influence a business or official decision or obtain or retain an improper advantage.”
“A ‘gift’ is anything of tangible or intangible value, including cash, gift certificates or gift cards, transportation, lodging, discounts, promotional items, contributions to a charity or other non-profit organization, and the recipient’s use of the donor’s time, equipment or facilities,” it added.
It is not clear whether television hosts would be subjected to the same rules of conduct or if they or Sharpton specifically have to abide by different rules.
Although government officials deemed the e-mails classified after Clinton left office, they could complicate her efforts to move beyond the political fallout from the controversy. They suggest that her role in distributing sensitive material via her private e-mail system went beyond receiving notes written by others, and appears to contradict earlier public statements in which she denied sending or receiving e-mails containing classified information.
The classified e-mails, contained in thousands of pages of electronic correspondence that the State Department has released, stood out because of the heavy markings blocking out sentences and, in some cases, entire messages.
The State Department officials who redacted the material cited national security as the reason for blocking it from public view.
Clinton, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination, was one of about four dozen State Department officials whose e-mails were redacted because of national security concerns, according to a Washington Post review. Those officials included top aides such as Jake Sullivan and Cheryl Mills, some of whom would be likely to fill out senior roles in a Clinton administration. All told, 188 of the e-mails the State Department has released contain classified material.
The extent of the redactions in e-mails sent by Clinton and others, including ambassadors and career Foreign Service officers, points to a broader pattern that has alarmed intelligence officials in which sensitive information has been circulated on non-secure systems. Another worry is that Clinton aides further spread sensitive information by forwarding government e-mails to Clinton’s private account.
But it also highlights concerns raised by Clinton and her supporters that identifying classified material can be a confusing process, and well-meaning public officials reviewing the same material could come to different conclusions as to its classification level.
Clinton’s use of a private e-mail server has become an issue for her campaign.
The intelligence community’s inspector general had previously identified four e-mails out of a sample of 40 that had been sent on her server and contained classified information, including two that involved top-secret information. In those cases, however, people who have reviewed the e-mails said that Clinton did not write them.
The FBI is investigating whether Clinton’s e-mail setup may have compromised national security information. Officials have said that Clinton is not a target of the inquiry.
Nick Merrill, a Clinton campaign spokesman, said the heavy redactions in some of Clinton’s e-mails had been expected.
“This has been the case in previous releases and may well be the case in subsequent ones,” he said. “It is not surprising given the sheer volume of intelligence community lawyers now involved in the review of these e-mails.”
Merrill pointed to “competing assessments among the various agencies about what should and shouldn’t be redacted.”
State Department spokesman John Kirby said that “classification is not always a black-and-white, binary judgment. Responsible people can draw different conclusions.”
But the presence of classified information in e-mails Clinton wrote appears to contradict her assurances that she sent no such material.
“I have said repeatedly that I did not send nor receive classified material, and I’m very confident that when this entire process plays out that will be understood by the everyone,” she said last week during a Democratic Party meeting in Minneapolis. She said that government officials may now be making different determinations after the fact, but “it does not change the fact that I did not send, nor receive, material marked classified.”
In December 2014, Clinton turned over to the State Department more than 30,000 e-mails she had sent and received during her tenure as secretary. The agency is reviewing and preparing them for public release. A judge has ordered the department to release the e-mails on a rolling basis, completing the process by January. The State Department said Monday that it has released about 25 percent of the archive.
The sensitivity of the redacted information in Clinton’s e-mails is not publicly known. Government officials who have seen some of the correspondence say the conversations are generally benign. Some discuss classified programs or topics that have become well-known through public reporting, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe classified information.
One e-mail Clinton wrote in October 2009 was addressed to former senator George J. Mitchell (D-Maine), who was a special envoy for peace in the Middle East. The entire message, as released by the State Department, is blacked out and tagged with a designation noting that the information was classified. The only part now public is Clinton’s opening: “George . . . .”
Another note went from Clinton to Melanne Verveer, who was ambassador for global women’s issues, on Dec. 9, 2010. It was entirely withheld from release. The subject line reads, “Re: latest . . .,” with the rest redacted, making it impossible to discern the topic of the exchange.
Like other e-mails, it was withheld based on State Department reviewers’ conclusion that it contained “foreign government information” and “foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States, including confidential sources.”
The e-mails offer hints that Clinton aides were attuned to the need to handle some information with care in more secure settings.
Sullivan e-mailed Clinton a day before Christmas Eve in 2010, for instance, referring to “some interesting reports from the Pal side” that had been passed along from a State Department diplomat, presumably referring to Palestinians. Sullivan suggested a discussion “if you have a moment to talk secure.”
Some of the classified e-mails were written by top aides, as well.
Sullivan in a December 2010 note described for Clinton the results of two phone calls — one in which Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s representative to the United Nations, called a top State Department official. The details provided by Sullivan, a campaign adviser widely considered a potential national security adviser if Clinton is elected, were withheld from public view.
In several exchanges, Verveer forwarded Clinton accounts of confidential reports from Foreign Service officers giving updates from their posts. She shared long notes from the U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh describing what he learned in a private dinner with senior officials in that country amid a major embezzlement scandal. Most of those messages were redacted.
“Maybe more than you want to know,” Verveer writes Clinton in one note titled, “Re: dinner with Gowher.” The reference is to Gowher Rizvi, international affairs adviser to Bangladesh’s prime minister.
Verveer, now the director of a women’s institute at Georgetown University, did not respond to messages seeking comment.
Are we still having any doubts about her integrity? If she had been honest from the start she might have had a chance to recover. But lies always lead to more lies…….
The chief of police in Pembroke Pines has received an apology after one of his officers was denied service at a fast-food restaurant in the city.
Pembroke Pines police spokeswoman Amanda Conwell said a uniformed officer was denied service Tuesday night at the Arby’s on Pines Boulevard. The reason, Conwell said, was because the customer was a police officer.
“I am offended and appalled that an individual within our community would treat a police officer in such a manner,” Police Chief Dan Giustino said in a news release. “It is unacceptable, and I will be contacting the Arby’s CEO to demand an apology.”
Pembroke Pines police Sgt. Jennifer Martin was refused service at the Arby’s on Pines Boulevard.
A Pembroke Pines police officer poses with a girl who dropped off cookies and a “thank you” card Tuesday evening.
Conwell said Giustino called the restaurant’s corporate office and spoke to Arby’s executives, who apologized on behalf of their organization. She said Arby’s CEO Paul Brown and senior vice president of operations Scott Boatwright assured Giustino that the employee’s behavior was “unacceptable and not representative of the company’s values.”
“Chief Giustino was appreciative and accepted their apology and now considers this matter closed,” Conwell said.
According to an offense report filled out by the officer, identified as Sgt. Jennifer Martin, the officer ordered her food in the drive-through of the restaurant and drove to the window to pay.
READ: Arby’s incident report
Martin claims that the clerk, Kenneth Davenport, took her credit card. She said the restaurant’s manager, Angel Mirabal, then approached the window and said, “He doesn’t want to serve you because you are a police officer.”
The officer said she told Mirabal that she was uncomfortable and “wasn’t certain I wanted to dine at the restaurant.”
According to the report, Mirabal assured Martin that everything was OK, handed her the food and laughed while telling her that Davenport was allowed to refuse her service.
Martin said that she went inside the restaurant, and Mirabal provided her with a refund and his contact information. She said Davenport refused to give her his contact information.
Conwell said the incident happened on the same evening that a woman and her daughter visited the Pembroke Pines Police Department to drop off cookies and a “thank you” card.
“We are very proud of the partnerships we have built within our city, and for an incident like this to have happened is very disappointing for everyone,” Giustino said.
Local 10 News reporter Terrell Forney asked an employee at the restaurant if she had heard about the incident.
“No, I didn’t,” the employee said. “I’m not really at liberty to say even if I was.”
Despite employees claiming to be unaware of the incident, a group of police officers’ wives held a protest outside of the restaurant Wednesday.
Broward County Police Benevolent Association President Jeff Marano said that the police union is calling for a national boycott of the fast-food chain. He said that Arby’s should not only apologize to the Pembroke Pines Police Department, but to every police officer.
“This behavior is unacceptable,” Marano said. “The disdain and lack of respect for law enforcement, as well as the fatal attacks on the men and women in uniform in America, is due to a lack of leadership — starting with our commander-in-chief, President Barack Obama.”
Ex-Eutawville police chief Richard Combs pleaded guilty Tuesday to misconduct in office, a misdemeanor, in connection with his 2011 fatal shooting of an unarmed African-American man.
Circuit Judge Edgar Dickson sentenced Combs to a suspended sentence of 10 years, suspended upon service of five years’ probation and one year in home detention. He will serve no time in prison, a far cry from what he faces with his earlier charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter.
Combs shot and killed Bernard Bailey, 54, outside city hall on the morning on May 2, 2011. Bailey had gone to city hall to talk to court officials about delaying a trial for a traffic ticket his daughter had received.
The unexpected plea and sentence put an end to a four-year legal saga that included state and federal investigations, a civil lawsuit in which the town of Eutawville paid Bailey’s heirs $400,000 and – finally this year – two criminal trials this year that ended in hung juries.
Combs’ two mistrials attracted wide attention during a year that has seen unprecedented publicity for police officers’ use of lethal force, especially cases involving white officers and African-American suspects.
Combs’ shooting of Bailey was not as clear-cut as some other cases. It was not caught on videotape, and witnesses said the 6-foot, 6-inch Bailey, although unarmed, was resisting arrest in a manner that allowed Combs to claim he had to use his gun.
The first trial was in Orangeburg in January; the second in June in Richland County. In each trial, Combs faced murder charges that would have carried 30 years to life in prison. In each trial, from two to four jurors hung the jury. Jurors also considered whether to convict Combs of manslaughter, which carries a lesser charge than murder.
First Circuit Solicitor David Pascoe said Tuesday that if Combs had not pleaded guilty Tuesday, he would have scheduled a third trial for Combs in October.
Pascoe’s determination to get a final jury verdict after two mistrials was in marked contrast to North Carolina prosecutors’ recent handling of a mistrial declared last month in the fatal shooting of an unarmed African-American college football player in Charlotte by a white Charlotte-Mecklenburg officer. In that case, after an 8-4 hung jury, the prosecutors announced Friday they would not seek another trial.
Overt racial themes did not play a role in Combs’ shooting of Bailey. Rather, questions revolved around whether the former police chief had used poor judgment and was seeking some kind of revenge against Bailey because, before the shooting, Bailey came to the scene of a traffic stop where Combs had pulled Bailey’s daughter over for a broken tail light. And some jurors were said to say that because Bailey was resisting arrest, he escalated the confrontation.
During the traffic stop, Bailey and Combs argued but were far from coming to blows, and prosecutors contended that Bailey was doing what all fathers would do if they could – be present during a traffic stop involving their daughter. Other police on the scene testified that Bailey’s conduct did not amount to interference with an officer.
After the traffic stop, without telling Bailey, Combs went to a magistrate and swore out a warrant for obstruction of justice, a charge that carries up to 10 years in prison.
Later, when Bailey went to Town Hall to request a change in the court hearing date on the broken taillight charge because his daughter was away at college, the chief sprung the warrant on him. Bailey, whom witnesses said was stunned, walked out of town hall and went to his truck.
Once Bailey was in his truck and was starting to back up, Combs opened the door and tried to turn off the ignition. The two briefly fought, and Combs shot Bailey twice in the chest, prosecutors said.
During both trials, Combs testified he was tangled in Bailey’s steering wheel and feared for his life if Bailey drove away.
The Justice Department investigated the shooting and found no cause to bring charges.
In 2014, the town of Eutawville settled a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Bailey’s family, paying the family $400,000.
At the time of his death, Bailey was an assistant manager in a Summerville Wal-Mart. He had been a longtime prison guard for the S.C. Department of Corrections.
Combs, a former Marine, was placed on leave after the shooting. The town dismissed him six months later. He had been free on $150,000 bond.
Each of the two trials earlier this year were marked by hard-fought battles between defense and prosecution lawyers.
In a closing argument to Richland County jurors, Pascoe portrayed Combs as a rogue cop who “decided to be judge, jury and executioner…You can’t take a human life without clean hands.”
But defense attorney Wally Fayssoux told the jury that Pascoe’s expert witnesses who testified about the shooting had manipulated facts so Pascoe could win his case.