All Articles Tagged "trial"

Put It On Hold: Zimmerman Won’t Get Gun Back Until Department of Justice Is Done Examining Evidence

July 19th, 2013 - By Veronica Wells
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Well this is a good sign. The Department of Justice placed a hold on all the evidence found in shooting and death of Trayvon Martin by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman.

That means that Zimmerman’s gun won’t be returned to him. You may remember that reports earlier this week claimed that legally Zimmerman was entitled to get his gun back.

But yesterday Sanford Police Captain James McAuliffe confirmed the hold.

This past week at the NAACP convention in Orlando, FL U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said the Justice Department has an open investigation in the case. The department is looking into whether Zimmerman violated Martin’s civil rights.

But even still a CBS affiliate reported that a gun shop owner in Volusia County has offered to give Zimmerman a free gun. The shop owner said he wasn’t trying to make a political statement but that in light of all of the death threats Zimmerman has received.

I Thought I Could Trust Him: Young Woman Who Accused LHH’s Mendeecees Of Molestation Testifies

February 6th, 2013 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Just yesterday, we reported that “Love & Hip Hop” star Mendeecees Harris was facing drug trafficking charges. In addition to the recently revealed drug charges, Harris is also facing sexual assault charges, after his ex-girlfriend’s 15-year-old daughter accused him of molesting her back in 2009. The trial for that case began yesterday, and the now 19-year-old young woman testified against him in court today, reports Cliff View Pilot.

With the jury’s full attention, the young woman recounted the chilling tale of how Harris allegedly  went from being a “father figure,” whom she believed she could trust to a man who forced her to have sex for money, after moving into his Lodi, New Jersey home back in 2009.

After moving into Mendeecee’s home with her mother and brothers, the teen alleged that because her mother was always at work, she reported to Harris for permission to hang out with her friends and other things that teens generally have to report to their parents about. She also revealed that because she didn’t have the strongest relationship with her mother, she confided in Harris about a lot of things.

“Mendeecees made me feel comfortable. He would give me advice.  He’d say ‘It’ll be okay between you and your mom’,” she told the court.

She alleged that the initial act of molestation occurred one afternoon while no one else was home. After finishing up taking a shower, she realized that there was no towel in the bathroom.

“I asked him to get me one [towel], and he did. Then he came into my room and suggested I let him m*sturb*te on me, but I just laughed,” she testified.

She went on to allege that Harris continued making the suggestion until she finally gave in, after which he gave her $15 or $20 “for lunch or maybe a ball game.”

The teen testified that although she had given in, Harris wasn’t satisfied and began pressing her for oral. She alleged that Harris, noticing her reluctance, began using a very private piece of information, which he previously acquired from her mother to manipulate her.

“He told me he knew I had been raped when I was 8 years old, and he found out from my mother.”

“ ‘Your mom doesn’t want you here’,” she said Harris told her just before exposing his genitals to her.

According to her testimony, she eventually gave in, which she revealed was out of spite to get back at her mother for revealing such an intimate secret to Harris.

“I felt betrayed by her. I didn’t tell her about it until I was 14, and it was something I didn’t want anyone to know.”

As time went on, Mendeecees allegedly continued to request sexual favors from the young woman in exchange for money. She even revealed that he would pull her younger brothers into the mix when they asked him for money by telling them  “talk to your sister. She knows what she has to do.”

The relationship between the teen’s mother and Harris ended when she confiscated the girl’s cell phone and found some inappropriate messages from Harris.

“I heard them in their room yelling, I felt bad. She came in my room and she was livid. She told me to get out. She was just screaming to me to get out.  I don’t remember if she said why,” she recalled before revealing that she left home to stay at a friend’s house that night.

“My mom didn’t know where I was, but Mendeecees did.”

The next day Mendeecees found her at her friend’s home, told the young woman that her mother had packed her belongings and pleaded with her not to reveal any details about their relationship.

“He said she didn’t know anything, so don’t say anything. It was something he would ‘take to his grave.’ He [also] told me they were done.”

“I felt horrible. At one point Mendeecees and my mother were going to get married. I felt it was all my fault.”

Sadly, she also claimed that she had to drop out of nursing school because of the trial. “You can’t miss that many days of class,” she said. She claimed that in addition to being shocked to learn that Harris was featured on “Love & Hip Hop”, she was also unaware that he was carrying on a relationship with Yandy Smith while he was still with her mother.

Mendeecees is currently facing seven counts of illegal sex.


Jazmine Denise is a news writer for Madame Noire. Follow her on Twitter @jazminedenise


Love & Hip-Hop Is More Disturbing Than We Knew: Mandeeces Facing Trial For Sexual Assault On A 15-Year-Old

January 11th, 2013 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: Twitter

Source: Twitter

Every reality TV star has some skeletons in the closet that are bound to come out once the cameras start rolling, but some skeletons are far worse than others. Case in point: disturbing news that has just surfaced about the father of “Love & Hip-Hop” star Yandy Smith’s baby and her rumored fiance, Mandeeces Harris.

It appears Mandeeces is awaiting trial after being accused of having inappropriate sexual conduct with a 15-year-old girl in Lodi, New Jersey two years ago. The 34-year-old who now appears alongside Yandy on LHH is charged with performing various sexual acts with the girl and inappropriately touching her at his former home there.

According to North Jersey’s The Report:

Bergen County prosecutors allege that Harris asked for and received oral from the girl and fondled her on various occasions between September 2009 and April 2010. He was arrested later that year and charged with aggravated sexual assault, criminal sexual contact and child endangerment. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

Mandeeces is free without bail which is why he has time to appear on Love & Hip-Hop, but on Wednesday the jury was selected for his trial in Hackensack and opening remarks are expected to begin January 29.

Since it took me a little while to put these pieces together in my mind, let me lay out some background details for you. Yandy and Mandeeces have been together off-and-on for six years which means he caught this case while they at least knew each other. Whether they were on at the time is currently unknown, but it’s surprising that she would have a child with this man while these serious legal allegations are flying around, let alone bring him on the show with her, and furthermore, seemingly get engaged to him.

Even more disturbing is the rumor floating around that the 15-year-old girl in question is the daughter of a woman Mandeeces has another son by. Sure this girl isn’t his biological child but the creep factor there cannot be denied. This also makes his and Yandy’s relationship seem super suspect. How long were they off to be having a child with someone else and racking up this kind of charge? Still, this situation also raises the question of whether there’s potential here for bitter baby mama strife and Mandeeces is innocent. I can’t fathom any other explanation for why a man who has remained behind the scenes this long would suddenly step in front of the cameras with all of this going on. I’m also curious whether Mona Sott-Young knows about this. Yandy, girl, good luck.

Jerry Sandusky Found Guilty on Abuse Charges

June 23rd, 2012 - By Drenna Armstrong
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After only 21 hours of deliberation, a Pennsylvania jury found former Penn State Assistant Coach Jerry Sandusky guilty on 45 of 48 charges related to child sex abuse Friday evening.

The case shocked the nation in 2011 when allegations came out that Sandusky has abused young boys through his charity over a period of 15 years.  Head coach Joe Paterno was removed from his post and Penn State has been closely watched after some – a few of whom worked with Sandusky at Penn State – said they were made aware of the abuse and ignored it.  Sandusky was accused of taking showers with young boys on university grounds.

During the three week trial, graphic testimony was given by many of the victims in hopes that it would further the prosecution’s case and have him found guilty. The defense attempted to argue that the media was biased so there was no way Sandusky could receive a fair trial and defense attorney Joe Amendola also wanted jurors to know that there wasn’t much physical evidence and the victims could possibly be exaggerating their story for financial gain.

A request for Sandusky’s bail was denied by Judge John Cleland and he was instantly taken to a local jail where he’ll remain as he awaits sentencing.  He could receive a maximum of 442 years in prison but even if he only receives a minimum sentence, which is based on the weight of each charge, he will spend the rest of his life in prison. There is also a chance that incest charges will be brought against him because his son Matt who is adopted stated through his attorney that he, too, was abused by Sandusky.

Lawyers for Sandusky suspect the sentencing will take place in September and say that he was expecting the worst to happen.


Michael Jackson Trial on Hold, Even Though Conrad’s Been Basically Convicted

October 18th, 2011 - By Brande Victorian
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Conrad Murray: Michael Jackson Manslaughter Trial
As much as I’ve tried to stay away from what many are calling the Michael Jackson “murder trial,” the thirst for blood not only from the prosecution — but also from the millions of MJ fans around the globe who feel the King of Pop was in fact murdered — won’t let me. So here is the latest.

Things seemed to be wrapping up with the prosecution last week, but the death of the father of the final witness, anesthesiologist Steven Shafer, has put things on hold until tomorrow. Shafer is expected to give a key piece of evidence to counter the defense’s claim that Jackson self-administered the fatal 25 mg dose of propofol through an IV catheter in his leg. Once Shafer gives his testimony, the defense will present its case and call an estimated 15 witnesses, extending the testimony through Friday at least.

Perhaps the anticipation of Shafer’s evidence is what caused the defense to switch gears last week from proving that Michael took a deadly dose of propofol by himself when Dr. Conrad Murray was out of the room, to alleging that he self-administered an overdose of lorazepam instead. Either way, it’s not like Dr. Murray has a chance in hell with the court of public opinion, particularly after the release of the tape featuring Michael’s slurred speech and his autopsy photos.

It will be interesting to see how this change in strategy affects the defense who claims authorities ignored the effects lorazapam may have had on Michael. But even if Dr. Murray escapes the charge of involuntary manslaughter, his reputation as a medical professional has been tarnished and in the eyes of many he is already seen as being guilty of the events that occurred on June 25, 2009. The trial at this point just seems like a technicality.

Is there a purpose to this trial, when the public sees him as guilty?

More on Madame Noire

Jackson Case Starts Off With a Shocking Photo

September 28th, 2011 - By madamenoire
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Getty Images

Prosecutors started the Michael Jackson trial with some disturbing evidence: a picture of the King of Pop’s emaciated body lying on a gurney. They used the photo to show that Dr. Conrad Murray, knowingly administered life threatening drugs to the entertainer.

Murray’s attorneys are arguing that Jackson’s death was a result of his own actions.

Ed Chernoff said this in his opening arguments:

“We believe that evidence will show… that when Dr. Murray left the room, Michael Jackson self administered a dose of Propofol that, with the Lorazepam, created a perfect storm within his body that killed him instantly. He died so rapidly, so instantly, he didn’t even have time to close his eyes.”

If convicted of manslaughter Murray could face four years in prison. Source: AM New York

WAIT! Check These Out!

Trial Starts for Michael Jackson's Doctor

September 27th, 2011 - By TheEditor
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(CNN) — Jurors will hear opening statements and the first witnesses Tuesday in the trial of Michael Jackson’s doctor, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the pop icon’s death.  But there are several things that Dr. Conrad Murray’s lawyer will not be able to tell jurors.  Murray’s lawyers will not be allowed to show video of Jackson’s March 2009 announcement of his “This Is It” concerts in London, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor ruled Monday.  The video would show jurors “Michael Jackson’s state of mind and demeanor” and support the testimony by his makeup artist that Jackson was furious the number of scheduled shows was increased from the initial 10 to 50, defense lawyer Nareg Gourjian told the judge.

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12 Months Probation for Jaywalking!? Believe It…

July 27th, 2011 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Nelson and a photo of her late son, A.J.

I never understood why people used to make a huge deal about jaywalking. Well, mainly the police. If you want to cross the street outside of the confines of a crosswalk than that’s your business, and a risk you choose to take on your own. How is crossing the street in a way that doesn’t include walking over some painted lines and a light an issue if you wait until the streets are clear? We’ve all done it, am I right? But after a 4-year-old boy was killed in a hit-and-run accident while the young man, his mother and two sisters were crossing a busy intersection to get home in April 2010, the whole freak out about jaywalking makes a little bit more sense. But should a mother possibly face more jail time for jaywalking with her kids than the person who was driving the car and bolted?

For a while there, that seemed to be a possibility for Georgia mother Raquel Nelson. Not only had she lost her son in the accident, but Raquel and one of her daughters were hit as well during the incident. As Nelson and her children waited on a median to cross the busy road after getting off of their bus, a young woman who also was waiting decided to try and beat the traffic by running across the street. Thinking that was his cue, 4-year-old A.J. Newman, Nelson’s son, followed suit and let go of his mother’s hand. As Nelson tried to run out to follow him, Nelson, her son A.J. of course, and her daughter were hit by the driver, who later admitted to drinking before he drove that day, and also taking painkillers before he got behind the wheel. While the driver, Jerry Guy, only served six months of a five year sentence for the accident, although he had two priors for hit-and-run accidents, the state convicted Nelson of reckless conduct, improperly crossing a roadway, and second degree homicide by vehicle. The mother, who was convicted by an all-white jury according to The Huffington Post, was looking at three years in prison. Luckily for her, yesterday Nelson was given community service and 12 months probation. However, Nelson doesn’t want any of that, and we can’t blame her. The mother is looking for a new trial in the hopes that she can be acquitted of all charges and wipe her record clean.

It’s important to note Nelson’s responsibility in this accident, but time in jail? That would have been a travesty, and probation in itself is seemingly way over the top. Especially since it has been proven that there wasn’t a real crosswalk available for Nelson and her kids to safely make it from their bus stop to their apartment. Something that has been complained about consistently by residents of Marietta, Ga., who have to cross the busy Austell Road. Is it not bad enough that she already lost her son? I think it’s pretty clear that the justice system sure knows how to do the absolute most and the least at the same time. Shame…but what do you think?

Do you think Raquel Nelson deserved probation?

BLAGO Found Guilty of Corruption

June 28th, 2011 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Things just got mad real for former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on Monday.

Blagojevich was found guilty on 17 (count ‘em) counts of corruption for what were deemed as his attempts (click for audio) to sell or trade Obama’s senate seat, money extortion and and lying to the FBI. Blagojevich’s reaction to the ruling was that he was “stunned,” as I’m sure he didn’t really believe he’d be convicted of so many counts since he was mighty cocky after last year’s fluff trial.

While the counts numerically add up to a hefty prison sentence, analysts say Blagojevich could face about 10 to 15 years of his sentence. His legal team is looking to appeal, but the former governor’s own main focus after leaving court yesterday was to go home and see the kiddies:

“Patti and I are obviously very disappointed. I, frankly, am stunned.”
We want to get home to our little girls and sort things out. I’m sure I’ll be seeing you guys soon.”

If this teaches us anything other than the obvious, it’s probably to not go on reality TV shows when the nation thinks you’re a creep, and to watch what you say and how you say it. Cause you’ll look mighty crazy (and guilty) if it winds up on tape…

What do you think of yesterday’s guilty verdict?

Naomi Campbell: Highs and Lows

August 5th, 2010 - By TheEditor
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(Telegraph) — Naomi Campbell has told a UN war crimes tribunal investigating Charles Taylor, the former Liberian president, how she was given a pouch containing “dirty stones” by two men who came to her hotel room. The men, who she had never met, told her “there is a gift for you”.

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