Houston Settles DOJ’s ‘Intolerable,’ ‘Egregious’ Firehouse Harassment Suit

The Justice Department announced today that it has reached a settlement with the City of Houston resolving allegations that personnel at Houston Fire Department (HFD) Station 54 discriminated and retaliated against former firefighter Jane Draycott in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII is a federal statute that prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex and religion.

The department also announced the April 28, 2020 settlement of the Title VII claims brought in its lawsuit on behalf of Houston firefighter Paula Keyes. Once the resolution announced today involving Draycott’s claims is entered by the court, all Title VII claims brought by the United States in its lawsuit will be resolved.

“There is no place in the workplace for the type of egregious sexual harassment that these two female Houston firefighters suffered in this case, and the retaliation one firefighter endured after she complained is intolerable and unlawful. Sexual harassment and retaliation of this kind artificially slam shut the doors of equal employment opportunity for women who work in jobs historically dominated by men,” said Assistant Attorney General Eric S. Dreiband. “These two strong women and anyone else who is hardworking and courageous enough to serve as a first responder deserve the full protection of the Civil Rights Act. The Department of Justice is and will remain dedicated to enforcing these protections so that firefighters and other public safety officials can protect and serve the public free from illegal sex discrimination.”

“This settlement agreement exemplifies our commitment to civil rights and sends a clear message that the U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to protect all Americans, including public sector employees, from unlawful discrimination, retaliation and sexual harassment in the workplace,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick for the Southern District of Texas. “The type of systematic discrimination suffered by HFD female firefighters can only be prevented when employers unequivocally promote a workplace free from discrimination.”

Draycott and Keyes each filed charges of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC’s Houston Office investigated the charges and made reasonable cause findings. After unsuccessful conciliation efforts, the EEOC referred the charges to the Justice Department.

According to the department’s complaint, filed in the Southern District of Texas, female firefighters Jane Draycott and Paula Keyes were subjected to a hostile work environment based on sex when they were employed at the HFD’s Station 54, located at Bush Intercontinental Airport in north Houston. The complaint alleged that, during the time that both Draycott and Keyes worked at Station 54, they were subjected to the soiling of their bathroom by male co-workers who urinated against the walls, floors, and sinks of that space. That misconduct escalated over time to dangerous activities that jeopardized the personal safety of Keyes and Draycott and their ability to do their jobs, to include the disconnection of the cold water in their showers and the silencing of the public announcement speakers in their residential areas such that they could not respond to emergency fire calls. This conduct was persistent even though Draycott complained about it through her chain of command. Prior to Draycott’s and Keyes’ transfer to Station 54, other female firefighters who had previously worked at Station 54 made similar complaints to the HFD about the conduct. According to the complaint, the HFD did not take meaningful steps to stop the discrimination against these other women.

The complaint further alleged the harassing conduct culminated in death threats and vulgar race- and gender-based slurs written on the walls of their work and living spaces and on their personal possessions. Finally, the complaint also alleged that the HFD retaliated against Draycott for complaining about her working conditions by publicly disparaging her in a workplace meeting in order to force her to leave the station. Ultimately, Draycott left HFD’s employment earlier than anticipated due to the intolerable working conditions.

Under the terms of the Oct. 26, 2020 consent decree with the City of Houston concerning HFD’s Station 54, which is subject to court approval, the city must provide training to certain supervisory staff and provide proof of compliance for up to 12 months. The city also agreed to pay Draycott $275,000.00 to resolve the claims of sex-based harassment and retaliation stemming from her employment with the HFD. In a separate settlement agreement executed in April 2020, the city agreed to pay $67,500.00 to Keyes to resolve similar claims alleged by the United States in its complaint via a separate settlement agreement.

The Civil Rights Division’s Employment Litigation Section brought and resolved the case in collaboration with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas. This matter was handled by Employment Litigation Section attorneys Karen Woodard, Jeremy Monteiro, Hector Ruiz, and Hillary Valderrama and Assistant United States Attorneys Keith Wyatt and Elizabeth Karpati of the Southern District of Texas.

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Video: Little Boy Defends Family and Home Against 4 Violent Obama Thugs

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For one South Bend homeowner, they got visitors that they would rather do without. It was a home invasion. However, the good news is that their little boy basically saved the day for them, putting Kevin McCallister of Home Alone movie fame to total shame in the process. 

The September 30th video shows a South Bend boy hitting the suspects as hard as he possibly could in an effort to defend his home.

The police responded to the home on South Grant after they received a report of shots fired, and they said that four Obama thugs forced their way inside the home after knocking on the door. Three of the suspects were armed with guns. 

Even though the police are very proud of the boy’s efforts to defend his South Bend home, they know there is still plenty of work to do in this case. “We have an important job to defend that little boy too,” a police spokesman said.

It seems that our current liberal society is not doing enough to applaud the real heroes in our country today. Organizations such as “Black Lives Matter” look at criminal thugs and treat them as if they are the heroes, but the fact that a young boy would do all he can to protect his family should be promoted. This boy is the true hero, no doubt about it.  

Would you happen to have information about the suspects? If so, you are strongly encouraged to call Michiana Crime Stoppers at 574-288-STOP or 800-342-STOP. You also can call the South Bend Police Department Investigative Bureau at 574-235-9263. This type of crime needs to be stopped. 

Also, what do YOU think about this story? Let us know in the comments below! 

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Trucker Who Drove Through George Floyd Protesters Is Charged

MINNIAPOLIS — The driver of a semi-tanker truck that barely avoided running into protesters on the Interstate 35W bridge over the Mississippi River has been charged with two crimes, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Thursday.

Bogdan Vechirko, 35, of Otsego was charged with a felony count of threats of violence and a gross misdemeanor count of criminal vehicular operation. He was charged by summons and his first court appearance is Nov. 10. The thorough investigation showed that Vechirko wanted to scare people out of his path, according to the complaint.

On the afternoon of May 31, more than 1,000 peaceful protesters were sitting and standing on the interstate bridge just east of downtown Minneapolis. A petroleum tanker truck, driven by Vechirko, approached the bridge from the south and headed right for the crowd at a high rate of speed. He did not stop until a person in the crowd stumbled and fell forward, according to the complaint.

Investigators reviewed traffic cameras and a number of cell phone videos, all of which showed protesters screaming and running in a panic from the truck. In addition to the protesters, the videos also showed multiple vehicles stopped in the northbound lanes and drivers heading the wrong direction on entrance ramps, the complaint states.

During the investigation, a similar truck was used to reconstruct Verchirko’s drive. The re-enactment showed that Verchirko’s line of sight would have provided him sufficient time to see the crowd and stop his truck well short of them, according to the complaint.

Investigators also spoke to numerous people who said that they thought they were going to be struck or killed by the truck. At least one person suffered scrapes and abrasions to her leg as she tried to get out of the truck’s path.

Criminal Complaint (PDF)

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Secret Service charges Maryland man for threatening to kidnap and kill Biden, Harris: Baltimore Sun

October 21, 2020

Secret Service agents have charged a Maryland man for threatening in a letter to kidnap and kill Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and rape his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), The Baltimore Sun has reported. Additionally, he supposedly targeted Democratic supporters, the Secret Service said.

The federal criminal complaint states that: “The defendant, James Dale Reed, knowingly and willfully threatened to kill and to kidnap and to inflict bodily harm upon Joseph Biden and Kamala Harris, who are major candidates for the office of the President and Vice President of the United States.”

The 42-year-old Reed, who describes himself as a semi-pro bodybuilder, wrote a violent, graphic letter in which he allegedly said: “We have a list of homes and addresses by your election signs. We are the ones with those scary guns, We are the ones your children have nightmares about. The Boogeymen coming in the night.”

When confronted by the Secret Service, Reed confessed to penning the letter, claiming he wrote it because he was upset with the current political situation.

Home security cameras caught Reed dropping off the letter on the front steps of someone’s house in the town of Frederick and was arrested last week, according to the Secret Service. Reed, who claims he didn’t know whose house it was, apparently delivered it to that particular house because it was the first one he encountered with Biden-Harris yard signs.

Currently, Reed is being held in jail without bail.

Court records indicate that Reed once threatened someone with Secret Service protection back in 2014 and was on the service’s radar.

According to The Sun, on an apparent Facebook page of his, he posted: “I just got my house raided today and my stuff stolen from me because they felt that I was a threat to societee and I have made no threat to societee but they came into my house sees my property and stole everything.”

Additionally, he supposedly referred to the Frederick Police as “bunch of thugs and gang members” on the same Facebook page.

In the lead-up to the 2020 presidential election, politically motivated violence from both extremes has risen dramatically. In fact, one-in-three Americans “believe that violence could be justified to advance their parties’ political goals,” according to an October study by Politico, “a substantial increase over the last three years.”

In anticipation of violence on Election Day and Night, police department across multiple American cities are even taking precautionary measures to bring potential civil unrest under control. The NYPD, for example, will dispatch officers to monitor 1,201 polling sites across the city on November 3.

RELATED: Wall Street Journal: NYPD increases security for Election Day

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Kamala Harris Failed to Prosecute Illegal MS-13 Gang Member Months Before He Murdered Bologna Family

A known MS-13 Gang member, living illegally in the United States, was arrested but went unprosecuted by then-San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris’ office months before he murdered a California family.

On June 22, 2008, 48-year-old Tony Bologna and his three sons — 20-year-old Michael, 18-year-old Andrew, and 16-year-old Matthew — were driving home from a family barbeque in San Francisco, California, when illegal alien MS-13 gang member Edwin Ramos, driving alongside them, randomly opened fire.

Ramos killed Anthony, Michael, and Matthew in the shooting. Prosecutors said Ramos shot the Bolognas because he misidentified them as rival gang members who were involved in a gang murder that day.

Michael Bologna, Tony Bologna, and Matthew Bologna were murdered in June 2008 by illegal alien MS-13 Gang member Edwin Ramos. (Photos via Facebook)

The murder case rose to prominence as Harris, who is now Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden’s running mate, was San Francisco District Attorney. Despite a plea by Angel Mom Danielle Bologna to seek the death penalty against Ramos, Harris refused and instead sought a life sentence.

Ramos, three months before the Bologna murders, had a run-in with San Francisco police officers. According to the San Francisco Gate, police had warned Harris’ office that Ramos was a known MS-13 Gang member with multiple run-ins with the law.

Despite his record, Harris’ office did not prosecute Ramos, the San Francisco Gate reported in 2008:

In March, three months before the killings, Ramos was arrested in San Francisco after police pulled him over because his car had illegally tinted windows and no front license plate. An alleged gang member in the car tried to discard a gun, but police recovered it and later concluded that it had been used in a double killing, authorities said. [Emphasis added]

The police report of the incident cited “numerous documented contacts” that officers had with Ramos and the man who allegedly discarded the gun, and said both were active members of the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) street gang. [Emphasis added]

San Francisco prosecutors, however, declined to file charges against Ramos, saying they couldn’t prove that he knew his companion had the gun. [Emphasis added]

Harris’ office claimed they needed another criminal charge Against Ramos in order to prosecute him, another report by the San Francisco Gate stated:

Police sent the case to prosecutors in District Attorney Kamala Harris’ office, who declined to file charges. They told investigators that there was no evidence that Ramos had known that Lopez had a gun, according to Harris’ office. [Emphasis added]

The gang charge had to have another crime associated with it for prosecutors to bring Ramos to trial, police and prosecutors said. [Emphasis added]

An account of Ramos’ arrest in March 2008 was published in the Los Angeles Times in July 2008. The report notes that after Harris’ office failed to press any charges against Ramos, he was released a couple of days later:

Ramos was also arrested March 30 on a weapons violation, along with an alleged gang member riding in his car. After he spent several days in jail, authorities decided to file charges against the other man but not him, and Ramos was released, said Eileen Hirst, a sheriff’s spokeswoman. [Emphasis added]

Deportation proceedings against Ramos could have been initiated but were not because of an apparent mix-up between the federal Immigration, Customs and Enforcement Agency and the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department, which runs the jail. [Emphasis added]

[…]

But ICE spokesman Tim Counts said the jail contacted federal immigration officials only once — at 3:44 a.m. April 2, two hours after Ramos had been released. [Emphasis added]

After the Bologna murders, Angel Mom Danielle Bologna pleaded with Harris to seek the death penalty against Ramos. Harris refused and instead sought a life sentence without parole.

Ramos was convicted in 2012 for the Bologna murders and appealed his conviction. A California appellate court upheld his conviction in 2014.

As Biden’s running mate, Harris supports a national sanctuary policy that would shield arrested illegal aliens from being turned over to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency for deportation proceedings.

Instead, the Biden-Harris plan advocates an amnesty for all 11 to 22 million illegal aliens living in the U.S. modeled on the Obama administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which has lenient eligibility requirements.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder

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Suspect Throws Torch Into Seattle Police Car With An Officer Inside

The Seattle Police Department (SPD) has released body-worn, dashcam, and surveillance video from the ongoing investigation into the Thursday officer-involved shooting in South Lake Union. The suspect can be seen in the video using a burning piece of lumber to attack an officer in his patrol car. The suspect then runs away as the officer opens fire. Detectives later booked the 37-year-old suspect, who was not struck by gunfire, into King County Jail. The officer, Caleb Pomazon, has been with the Seattle Police Department for one year and is currently on paid administrative leave per department policy. Around 1:30 PM, an officer was in their patrol vehicle in an alley between Dexter Avenue and John Street looking for a man who was reportedly brandishing a flaming piece of lumber.

The officer found the man, who threw the flaming lumber—believed to be a 2×2—into the patrol vehicle while the officer was still inside. Additional responding officers chased the man into a parking garage where they deployed a taser and took him into custody. One officer is believed to have discharged a firearm during the incident. The suspect was not struck. Additionally, as officers were arresting the man, the flames from the burning lumber engulfed the entire patrol vehicle. One officer was transported to Harborview Medical Center with non-life-threatening burns.

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DOJ: 94 Percent of Foreign Nationals in U.S. Federal Prison Are Illegal Aliens

About 94 percent of foreign nationals incarcerated in federal prisons across the United States are illegal aliens who either crossed international borders illegally or overstayed their visas, the Department of Justice (DOJ) reveals.

An annual DOJ report finds that for Fiscal Year 2019, 94 percent of foreign nationals in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) were illegal aliens, while 70 percent in BOP custody and 39 percent in USMS custody were convicted for crimes unrelated to their immigration violations.

By the end of Fiscal Year 2019, the DOJ report states, more than 51,000 foreign nationals were in federal prison — nearly 27,500 of which were in BOP custody and 23,580 in USMS custody.

Broken down, more than 53 percent of foreign nationals in federal prison last year were ordered deported before they were locked up for crimes. Another 36 percent of foreign nationals in prison were under investigation by federal immigration officials, and more than seven percent are being adjudicated as illegal aliens.

About 3.5 percent of foreign nationals in federal prison were legal immigrants being either adjudicated or shielded from deportation.

The average cost to American taxpayers to house foreign national convicts in just USMS facilities, not including BOP facilities, last year was $88.19 per prisoner every day.

“Because of the greater number of prisoners received into USMS custody … total detention housing costs increased by approximately 1.9 percent … from $159 million to $162 million,” the DOJ report states.

The DOJ report also detailed various cases such as one involving 30-year-old Colombian national Fredis Valencia Palacios. In 2016, he and c0-conspirators organized a human trafficking scheme where they arranged to smuggle illegal aliens into the U.S.

Three Cuban illegal aliens paid Palacios and his co-conspirators for the smuggling scheme, but when the illegal aliens were put on a boat headed for Miami, Palacios’ co-conspirators raped and murdered a female passenger and murdered a male passenger. The DOJ report states:

One of the co-defendants threw the male passengers overboard, anchoring them with rope to the inside of the boat. The surviving male victim reported that he heard the co-defendants sexually assault the female victim before cutting her throat and murdering her. The surviving victim also heard the co-defendants cut the other male victim’s throat, killing him. The survivor managed to escape by swimming and was subsequently rescued by the Colombian Navy.

Palacios was convicted in December 2018 and sentenced to 180 months in federal prison for his role in the smuggling scheme.

Every year, the U.S. admits about 1.2 million legal immigrants on green cards to permanently resettle in the country — 70 percent of which arrive as chain migrants. In addition, 1.4 million foreign workers are admitted every year to take American jobs. These totals do not include the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who arrive annually, the majority of which are never deported.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder

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Woman Uses Steak Knives to Hack Moms Head Off After She Does THIS

When you think about someone who uses steak knives regularly, you probably think that they are a whiz in the kitchen. Unfortunately, in this particular incident that wasn’t the case. A Kansas woman recently received a life sentence due to her using steak knives to hack her ex-boyfriend’s mother’s head off. She used two large steak knives for this grisly deed, and then she left the woman’s head in her kitchen sink. 

Rachael Hilyard is a Wichita woman who has been sentenced by the courts to this life term because she killed and dismembered Micki Davis, 63. The courts determined that this grotesque homicide was premeditated as well. 

The sentencing stems from an April 9, 2017 incident where the homicide victim went to the ex-girlfriend’s house after she had broken up with the woman’s son. Micki Davis was with her nine-year-old grandson, and after the verbal confrontation started he ran for help. Unfortunately, Davis was decapitated while the grandson was gone. 

After the authorities arrived, they immediately discovered that the victim’s headless body was lying in a pool of blood in the garage. The head was still in the kitchen sink while the police were clearing the crime scene. 

Members of the Davis family either attended the hearing in person or via Zoom call. Hilyard apologized for her barbaric actions, saying she felt regret for using the steak knife on the woman and that the death penalty was “too good for her.”

Jeremy Rush was with Davis when the incident happened. “Mom said that hate is the worst thing to say to anyone,” he said. “Mom would scold me for saying it.” Still, Jeremy expressed a lot of anger and naturally he was having a difficult time containing it. 

On the other hand, Jacona Gillespie is the daughter of Hilyard, and she had some terrible things to say about the victim as well. She called the victim “a monster, and someone who terrified her son and her entire family.” However, she also admitted that the beheading with steak knives was a very selfish act. 

Defense attorneys for Hilyard tried to bring up that she had recently suffered a head injury, but Judge Bruce Brown said that her mental state did not absolve her. 

Hilyard was ultimately found guilty of the crime last February, and she was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 50 years. What do YOU think of a woman such as Rachael Hilyard, who uses steak knives to do such a monstrous deed? Feel free to share your comments below!

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Congressman: FBI Must Launch ‘Criminal Investigation’ into Biden Family

Rep. Lee Zeldin (NY), the top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, called Friday for the Justice Department and the FBI to open a “criminal investigation” into the Biden family after reports that Hunter Biden used connections to his father when he was vice president when doing lucrative overseas business deals.

Zeldin tweeted: “The DOJ/FBI needs to open a criminal investigation into the Biden Family’s global pay to play operation.”

Zeldin also serves on the House Committee on Financial Services and served on the president’s impeachment defense team.

Zeldin’s call comes after a series of reports stemming from emails found on a hard drive that Hunter Biden or an associate reportedly dropped off at a computer repair store in Delaware but never picked up. The laptop was reportedly turned over to the FBI in December 2019.

One report by the New York Post published an email that allegedly showed Hunter Biden had arranged a meeting between a business associate from Burisma, a Ukrainian natural gas company that was facing a corruption investigation, and his father when he was serving as vice president.

A follow-up Post report on Hunter Biden’s international business deals with a Chinese state-owned energy firm published other emails, including one from August 2, 2017, in which he wrote that the firm’s then-chairman had offered him $10 million annually for “introductions alone.”

In that same email chain, he wrote, “Consulting fees is one piece of our income stream but the reason this proposal by the chairman was so much more interesting to me and my family is that we would also be partners inn [sic] the equity and profits of the JV’s [joint venture’s] investments.”

Another email, sent from a business associate on May 13, 2017, that discussed a percentage of shares in a business venture to be split among four people, identified Hunter Biden as “H” and had a “20” next to it. It also said: “10 held by H for the big guy ?” but did not specify who “the big guy” is.

Fox News subsequently reported that sources told the outlet that “the big guy” is a reference to the former vice president.

Nineteen House Republicans have also written a letter to the FBI, demanding to know if they knew Hunter Biden had arranged the meeting with the Burisma executive with then-Vice President Joe Biden at the same time House Democrats were trying to impeach President Donald Trump for asking Ukraine’s president to assist Attorney General Bill Barr with any evidence of such corruption.

“A large portion of the president’s legal defense case revolved around strong evidence that former Vice President Biden’s son Hunter was peddling his influence to his father to land lucrative jobs overseas that he might not have otherwise been qualified for,” the letter said.

“If the FBI was, in fact, in possession of this evidence and failed to alert the White House to its existence that would have given even more weight to the president’s legal defense, this was a gross error in judgement and a severe violation of trust,” it added.

Follow Breitbart News’s Kristina Wong on Twitter or on Facebook.

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Joe Biden: Have Cops Shoot the Leg Instead of ‘Shoot to Kill’

During the Thursday night ABC News town hall, Democrat presidential hopeful Joe Biden reiterated his position that police ought to be trained to shoot perps in the leg instead of learning a “shoot to kill” mentality.

While answering a question about the 1994 Crime Bill, Biden called for “transparency,” banning chokeholds, and “de-escalating.” He explained de-escalation by saying, “So, instead of anybody coming at you and the first thing you do is shoot to kill, you shoot them in the leg.”

He then suggested more background checks for officers in order to find those who are best suited for the job and hiring “psychologists and social workers” to go out with police when they are sent on a call.

On June 1, 2020, Breitbart News reported Biden’s statement that police should shoot suspects “in the leg instead of the heart.”

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkinsa weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him at awrhawkins@breitbart.com. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.

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