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Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

 

Former Texas Rangers Pitcher John Barfield Shot To Death

ACC Baseball Tournament: Duke Vs. Wakeforest

Former Texas Rangers pitcher John Barfield was shot and killed in a domestic incident on Christmas Eve in Little Rock, Arkansas, authorities said.

Barfield, 52, and his girlfriend were at his home when the woman’s estranged husband came to the residence, said Little Rock police spokesman Lt. Steven McClanahan.

“Barfield was dating her even though she was still married,” McClanahan said.

A physical altercation ensued and Goodman shot Barfield, police said.

Goodman was taken to the hospital, released and charged with first-degree murder. There is no attorney listed for Goodman yet.

Barfield was a lefthander who had an 8-8 record from 1989-91 with the Rangers, according to Baseball-Reference.com. He appeared in 65 games with 11 starts and ended with a 4.72 ERA.

He was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and played at Crowder College in Neosho, Missouri and Oklahoma City University before being picked by the Rangers in the 1986 draft, Baseball-Reference.com said.


Carolina Ranked No. 1 In Best College Value For The 16th Time

UNC_Seal

Once again, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is the best value in American public higher education, according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. This is the 16th time the nation’s first public university is also first in value.

Recognized for upholding academic quality and affordability, Carolina takes the top ranking among public colleges in two categories: Best in-state and best out-of-state value. In the overall ranking of the 300 best-value colleges and universities, UNC-Chapel Hill moves up one spot to 9th.

“Providing an excellent and affordable education is a hallmark of our 223-year history,” said Chancellor Carol L. Folt. “Once again being recognized as the best value in American public higher education demonstrates the success of Carolina’s unwavering commitment to making the opportunities that come from attending a leading university available to students without burdening them with excess debt after graduation.”

Rounding out the top three for best values in public colleges: The universities of Virginia and California at Berkeley. Taking the top spot in the combined best values list is Swarthmore College, followed by Davidson College and Princeton University.

The magazine rankings are based on its definition of value, which is: A quality education at an affordable price. Some of the key measures for quality are: admission rates; the percentage of students who return sophomore year; graduation rates; test scores of incoming freshmen and student-to-faculty ratios. As for the financial measures, the magazine considers overall cost of tuition; the cost of books; room and board; the average percentage of need met by aid and the average debt a student accumulates before graduation.

Nationally, 68 percent of students borrow money to pay for college and on average graduate $30,100 in debt. That’s compared to 41 percent of students at UNC-Chapel Hill who borrow money to attend the University. The average amount of debt for those graduating students: $20,127.

Currently, 44 percent of students at the University receive financial aid through signature, nationally recognized programs like the Carolina Covenant, which has offered more than 6,000 low-income students who earn admission the chance to graduate debt free. In 2015, 60 percent of seniors graduated with no debt. Another program, Carolina Firsts creates a path of opportunity for the 20 percent of undergraduates who will be the first in their families to graduate from a four-year campus.

In 2016, UNC-Chapel Hill’s four-year graduation rate was 82 percent, up 8 percentage points since 2005. The six-year rate was 91.4 percent and rose by more than 5 percentage points.

The magazine’s special report on best college values for 2017 and the complete rankings can be found online and also in the February 2017 issue of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, on newsstands January 3rd.


Carrie Fisher, ‘Star Wars” Princess Leia, Dies At 60

Actress Carrie Fisher, whose grit and wit made "Star Wars'" Princess Leia an iconic and beloved figure to millions of moviegoers, died Tuesday in Los Angeles. She was 60.

Actress Carrie Fisher, whose grit and wit made “Star Wars'” Princess Leia an iconic and beloved figure to millions of moviegoers, died Tuesday in Los Angeles. She was 60.

Her death was confirmed in a statement issued by the publicist for Billie Lourd, Fisher’s daughter.

“It is with a very deep sadness that Billie Lourd confirms that her beloved mother Carrie Fisher passed away at 8:55 this morning,” Simon Halls said.

Fisher’s death came four days after she suffered a cardiac event on a flight from London to Los Angeles, according to a source familiar with the situation.

‘The family business’

The actress and advocate, who got her start in Hollywood as a seductive teen in the 1975 film “Shampoo,” was the daughter of screen legend Debbie Reynolds and singer Eddie Fisher.

But her biggest break as an actress came just a few years after she dropped out of high school to appear alongside her mother on Broadway.

It was 1977 and she beat out the likes of Jodie Foster and Amy Irving for the part of Leia in George Lucas’ “Star Wars.” The tough-as-nails princess was strong and independent — and the role positioned Fisher in the decades that followed as something of a feminist icon.

“I was trained in celebrity, so I did the only thing I knew,” Fisher once told Rolling Stone. “I went into the family business.”

“Forty-three years ago, George Lucas ruined my life,” she wrote in her book, “Wishful Drinking.” “And I mean that in the nicest possible way.”

Celebrity tributes

Tributes immediately flooded social media.

“I’m deeply saddened at the news of Carrie’s passing. She was a dear friend, whom I greatly respected and admired. The force is dark today!” tweeted her “Star Wars” co-star Billy Dee Williams.

Actor William Shatner, star of the “Star Trek” TV series, tweeted, “I’m deeply saddened to learn of the death of Carrie Fisher. I will miss our banterings. A wonderful talent & light has been extinguished.

Actor Joe Mantegna tweeted: “Carrie always made me smile to be around her. My heartfelt condolence to all her family.”

Fisher wrote about not loving the exposure that came with the success — or the characteristic hairstyle, which she called “idiotic.”

“I weighed about 105 at the time, but to be fair, I carried about fifty of those pounds in my face! So you know what a good idea would be? Give me a hairstyle that further widens my already wide face,” she wrote.

‘Hurt my feelings’

Actress Carrie Fisher, whose grit and wit made "Star Wars'" Princess Leia an iconic and beloved figure to millions of moviegoers, died Tuesday in Los Angeles. She was 60.

Actress Carrie Fisher, whose grit and wit made “Star Wars'” Princess Leia an iconic and beloved figure to millions of moviegoers, died Tuesday in Los Angeles. She was 60.

She became a star alongside Harrison Ford, with whom she eventually revealed she’d been romantically involved for a brief time while filming the first “Star Wars” movie.

Nearly four decades after the first “Star Wars,” the actress reprised her most iconic role in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

Fisher fired back at fans who mocked her for having aged since her last appearance in a “Star Wars” movie, tweeting “Please stop debating about whether OR not I aged well. unfortunately it hurts all of my feelings.”

In the years between “Star Wars” gigs, Fisher published multiple books, including a memoir, “The Princess Diarist.” She also was known around Hollywood as a script doctor, having worked on such films as “The Wedding Singer” and “Sister Act.”

Talked about struggles

Fisher spoke openly about her struggles with alcoholism and bipolar disorder. She was an advocate for mental health awareness and treatment.

“There are a couple of reasons why I take comfort in being able to put all this in my own vernacular and present it to you,” she wrote in “Wishful Drinking,” after detailing her diagnosis and an overdose incident. “For one thing, because then I’m not completely alone with it. And for another, it gives me a sense of being in control of the craziness.”

Fisher is survived by her daughter, “Scream Queens” actress Billie Lourd, whose father is talent agent Brian Lourd. Her mother, brother Todd Fisher, and half-sisters Tricia Leigh Fisher and Joely Fisher also survive her.

Fisher was married to singer-songwriter Paul Simon for less than a year from 1983-84.

Fisher’s death is the latest devastating loss to the Hollywood community, which has seen a number of legends pass away in 2016.

She was, you could say, a force.

CNN’s Ralph Ellis, Brandon Griggs and Eliott McLaughlin contributed to this story


Cancer Patient Wins A Year Of Free Pizza, Gives It To Food Bank

Josh Katrick had just walked out of his eighth round of chemotherapy, when good fortune struck. He had just won a competition: free pizza for a year from a neighborhood restaurant in Pennsylvania. But instead of seizing the opportunity to spend the better part of 2017 gorging on the well-deserved melted mozzarella wellspring, Katrick, who has colon cancer, decided other people needed it mor

Josh Katrick had just walked out of his eighth round of chemotherapy, when good fortune struck.

He had just won a competition: free pizza for a year from a neighborhood restaurant in Pennsylvania.

But instead of seizing the opportunity to spend the better part of 2017 gorging on the well-deserved melted mozzarella wellspring, Katrick, who has colon cancer, decided other people needed it more.

So he gave every slice away.

The local Northampton food bank is the recipient of his generosity.

“You know the saying, ‘When life gives you lemons make lemonade,’ well, when life gives you pizza, give away a slice,” the 36-year-old told CNN Sunday.

Katrick has been feasting on Mario’s Pizza in Northampton since he was a child, and was one of 1,200 people to enter the competition.

The winner would walk away with 2 large (and they mean large) pizzas and soda, every month for the next year.

But after Katrick’s act of holiday kindness, the pizza restaurant about 65 miles north of Philadelphia decided to extend its own.

The restaurant is doubling the prize to make sure Katrick gets his share of pizza, along with the food bank.

“I thought someone would win, they’d be excited, come in and get their pizzas, but a story like this to come out of a contest like that…” Giuseppe Aiello, the son of the family-run pizzeria’s co-owner, told CNN affiliate WFMZ.

“It’s better to give than receive, and especially during this time of year — Christmas,” Aiello said.

Katrick said he was inspired to pay it forward because of the generosity he had received from others during his cancer treatment.

“After everything I went through these last few months — I met so many people and have been receiving so much — I felt I wanted to give back.” Katrick said. “The food bank are very thankful. They’re amazed by it. They will put it to good use”

Katrick said he had surgery for stage 2 colon cancer in August and has been receiving chemotherapy since September.

“My family and friends are amazed — so many positive reactions. Around Christmas it really brought everybody’s spirits up and made people know there are good people in the world fighting the good fight.”

Josh’s father, Ron Katrick, told CNN he is “very proud” of his son.

And his generosity doesn’t end there.

Josh, still reluctant to indulge in all the pizza coming his way, told CNN, “Maybe I’ll share with my friends on Facebook [and] make a contest of my own to see if anyone would like some pizza.”


NYPD Suspends Cop Who Allegedly Posted Snapchat Of Handcuffed Family

A police officer posted a photo of Kimberly Santiago and her family handcuffed in their living room. New York Police Department says incident is under internal review.

Waking up with a gun to her face, handcuffed along with her family and having the incident posted on Snapchat, was not how Kimberly Santiago expected to start her morning last Thursday, she says.

Santiago, 29, of Brooklyn, New York, claimed police broke into her mother’s third floor apartment in Brownsville at 6:30am, forced her and six other family members out of bed while pointing guns at them, and placed them in handcuffs in the living room.

She said the reason they were given by police for the lockdown was “so no one will go crazy or act up,” while the officers, who arrived with a search warrant, were searching the place.

The New York Police Department has not named the officer, but said the officer involved has been suspended and the incident is currently under internal review.

Santiago said the family was handcuffed for three hours, while an officer watching them took pictures and allegedly posted them on Snapchat. A friend later sent her the photos after seeing them on the app, one titled “Merry Christmas it’s NYPD!” and the other “Warrant Sweeps it’s still a party smh.”

Santiago recalled seeing the officer on his phone, but was surprised and outraged to learn he was taking pictures and allegedly posting them. “Who would think an officer is going to do that?” she told CNN.

According to the police warrant handed to Santiago’s mother Ruth, the owner of the apartment, police officers were searching for a Hispanic man called JD Blue. The warrant states he is in his mid-30s, with tattoos on both arms and a mole on his face.

Santiago said none of the family members knew the man, and they were all shaken by the event. “My mom almost got a heart attack,” she said. “I told them ‘leave me in handcuffs but take my mother’s off please’.”

A police officer posted a photo of Kimberly Santiago and her family handcuffed in their living room. New York Police Department says incident is under internal review. Santiago says NYPD officers ransacked her apartment.

A police officer posted a photo of Kimberly Santiago and her family handcuffed in their living room. New York Police Department says incident is under internal review. Santiago says NYPD officers ransacked her apartment.

Santiago, whose father passed away last month, added that the police officers “turned the apartment upside down” and eventually gave her a ticket for possession of marijuana, before releasing her family with no further charges.

She said she begged the police not to touch her father’s ashes, which were placed by the Christmas tree. According to Santiago the officers obliged and did not touch the ashes.

After discovering that pictures of her family were published online by an officer from the 73rd precinct, Santiago said she called 911 and filed a complaint. She added that some items from the apartment were either missing or broken.

According to Santiago’s account, an Internal Affairs officer came back to the apartment so she and the other family members could identify the police officer who took the photos. She said she was later informed the officer had been suspended without pay for 30 days, but she remains upset and is not satisfied.

“Every time there’s a knock on the door we’re nervous, it messed us up,” she said. “How did my mom’s apartment become a situation they had to raid? Did they have any proof or cause to lead to all of this? I need answers, they got to do more than suspending.”


Suit: Versace Used Secret ‘Code’ For Black Customers

A former Versace employee is suing the company for unfair business practices, and one of the allegations in his lawsuit is that the luxury fashion label uses a secret "code" to alert employees when a black customer enters the store.

A former Versace employee is suing the company for unfair business practices, and one of the allegations in his lawsuit is that the luxury fashion label uses a secret “code” to alert employees when a black customer enters the store.

Christopher Sampiro, 23, says he was fired for being of mixed race, after working two weeks at the Versace outlet store in Pleasanton, California.

Sampiro alleges that during the new-employee training, a manager asked him if he knew about the “D410 Code” — the same code used for black clothing. The manager’s name is not mentioned in the lawsuit, which was filed in November, six weeks after the alleged exchange.

The manager instructed Sampiro “to say ‘D410’ in a casual manner when a black person entered the store,” according to the lawsuit. The manager explained the “code is used to alert co-workers that ‘a black person is in the store,'” the lawsuit said.

Sampiro responded by asking the manager, “You know that I’m African American?” In the lawsuit, Sampiro self-identifies as one-quarter African American.

After this response, Sampiro claimed the store’s management treated him differently and did not give him “legitimate” training.

Sampiro was fired after working two weeks in September because he didn’t “understand luxury” and didn’t “know the luxury life,” according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit also alleges Sampiro was not paid for time worked, did not receive rest periods and was wrongfully terminated.

In court documents filed with Alameda County Superior Court, Versace denied Sampiro’s allegations and asked a judge to dismiss the case. A case status conference is scheduled for March 21.

CNN called Versace’s corporate office and its Pleasanton store. Calls were not returned.


Fights Break Out At Malls Across United States

**EMBARGO: Hartford-New Haven**

Disturbances that included gunfire, massive brawls and food-court fights played out at more than a dozen malls across the US.

Massive brawls and food-court fights played out at more than a dozen malls across the country in what proved to be a chaotic day after Christmas.

Some of the mayhem was captured on social media. The chaos prevented some shoppers from grabbing clothes off clearance racks and returning gifts.

The mall incidents, which ranged from minor melees to mass evacuations, occurred from Colorado to Tennessee and Texas to New Jersey. Here’s what happened at seven of those malls.

Aurora, Colorado

It all started with a social media post that promised a fight at the Town Center at Aurora.

Aurora Police Department spokesman Sgt. Chris Amsler said about 100 people had gathered in the food court before the brawls broke out — prompting the Colorado mall to close early on Monday afternoon..

“(It) kind of morphed into this large disturbance,” Amsler said.

When off-duty police officers working as security guards tried to break up a fight, people circled the officers, who called for backup, Amsler said.

As police officers on duty arrived, fights broke out throughout the mall, at a movie theater and at a nearby park-and-ride lot, he said.

He estimated 500 people were involved. Authorities arrested five people, all juveniles, and recovered no weapons, he said. One person assaulted at the park-and-ride lot suffered “significant” injuries and was taken to a hospital, Amsler said.

Aurora, Illinois

In Aurora, Illinois, seven juveniles were taking into custody Monday evening after police received a call for assistance at Fox Valley Mall “due to an unruly crowd in the common area,” police said.

Moments after the call, a fight broke out in the food court area and those were followed by several other smaller altercations, police said.

The brawl forced evacuations and the mall closed. No injuries were reported in the incident.

Memphis, Tennessee

In Memphis, Tennessee, seven people were arrested after incidents at two malls, CNN affiliate WMCA reported.

Police said a group started a disturbance in the Wolfchase Galleria food court and started running, which prompted some customers to call 911, WMCA said.

Then a crowd gathered outside Oak Court Mall, about 10 miles west, and started a disturbance, WMCA said. Both malls were cleared and closed early for the night.

Shots were reported in both incidents, but police said they found no evidence of gunfire, WMCA said.

No injuries were reported, CNN affiliate WATN said.

Fayetteville, North Carolina

*** Embargo: Hartford-New Haven, CT *** Seven people were arrested after several fights broke out at Shoppes at Buckland Hills in Manchester, Connecticut, on Monday night.

*** Embargo: Hartford-New Haven, CT ***
Seven people were arrested after several fights broke out at Shoppes at Buckland Hills in Manchester, Connecticut, on Monday night.

In Fayetteville, North Carolina, people panicked after teenagers fought in the food court, Fayetteville police spokesman Shawn Strepay told CNN affiliate WRAL. No shots were fired, despite reports of gunfire, Strepay said.

“Once people start running in that area or chairs are getting knocked over, tables, that sort of thing, that echoes and it could resemble the sound of a gunshot to a lot of people,” he said.

Elizabeth, New Jersey

The first calls from the The Mills at Jersey Gardens came in just after nightfall Monday. Witnesses said they thought they had heard shots fired. That, along with a fight, led to what Elizabeth police Officer Greg Jones described as a “chaotic panic and everybody running all at once.”

Ultimately, though, patrons had mistaken the sound of a chair slammed during a fight for gunfire, city officials told CNN affiliate News 12 New Jersey. Two people, an 8-year-old and 12-year-old, were injured, the station reported.

Fort Worth, Texas

The security guards had no other choice but to place the Hulen Mall on lockdown. At one point, police told CNN affiliate KTVT, at least 100 people were involved in a series of fights.

Fort Worth Police spokeswoman Tamara Velle said officers initially responded to reported gunfire inside the mall. After breaking up the fights, officers stopped by each store to let people leave while the lockdown remained in effect, KTVT reported.

There were no reported injures or property damage — thanks in large part to local police, Kelle said.

“You keep hearing the horror stories of the mall shootings across the nations right now,” Velle told KTVT. “Anytime we’re hearing about a mall shooting and it’s the day after Christmas, (where) you have tons of people holiday shopping … we’re going to get in there as fast as we can.”

Beachwood, Ohio

**EMBARGO: Hartford-New Haven** Disturbances that included gunfire, massive brawls and food-court fights played out at more than a dozen malls across the US.

**EMBARGO: Hartford-New Haven**
Disturbances that included gunfire, massive brawls and food-court fights played out at more than a dozen malls across the US.

Shortly after sunset, a large-scale disturbance broke out at Beachwood Place Mall, in Beachwood, Ohio.

An initial report of gunfire was quickly found to be false by police.

“One male juvenile was arrested for attempting to strike an officer that was dealing with another disorderly patron,” Beachwood police said in a statement.

Beachwood police, officers from nearby jurisdictions and mall security were able to disperse the juveniles and remove them from the mall, police said in a statement. Beachwood Police Capt. Gary Haba told CNN that pepper spray was used to disperse a large crowd at one point.

The disturbance appears “to have been loosely organized on social media,” the statement said.

Beachwood mall was re-opened and there were no injuries or other arrests.

CNN’s Ralph Ellis, Jack Hannah, Mayra Cuevas, Tony Marco, and Jamiel Lynch contributed to this report.