HIV-positive man receives 35 years for spitting on Dallas police officer


Sunday, May 18, 2008

An HIV-positive man was sentenced to 35 years in prison Wednesday, one day after being convicted of harassment of a public servant for spitting into the eye and open mouth of a Dallas, Texas police officer in May 2006. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that no one has ever contracted HIV from saliva, and a gay-rights and AIDS advocacy group called the sentence excessive.

A Dallas County jury concluded that Willie Campbell’s act of spitting on policeman Dan Waller in 2006 constituted the use of his saliva as a deadly weapon. The incident occurred while Campbell, 42, was resisting arrest while being taken into custody for public intoxication.

“He turns and spits. He hits me in the eye and mouth. Then he told me he has AIDS. I immediately began looking for something to flush my eyes with,” said Waller to The Dallas Morning News.

Officer Waller responded after a bystander reported seeing an unconscious male lying outside a building. Dallas County prosecutors stated that Campbell attempted to fight paramedics and kicked the police officer who arrested him for public intoxication.

It’s been 25 years since the virus was identified, but there are still lots of fears.

Prosecutors said that Campbell yelled that he was innocent during the trial, and claimed a police officer was lying. Campbell’s lawyer Russell Heinrichs said that because he had a history of convictions including similarly attacking two other police officers, biting inmates, and other offenses, he was indicted under a habitual offender statute. The statute increased his minimum sentence to 25 years in prison. Because the jury ruled that Campbell’s saliva was used as a deadly weapon, he will not be eligible for parole until completing at least half his sentence.

If you look at the facts of this case, it was clear that the defendant intended to cause serious bodily injury.

The organization Lambda Legal (Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund), which advocates for individuals living with HIV, says that saliva should not be considered a deadly weapon. Bebe Anderson, the HIV projects director at Lambda Legal, spoke with The Dallas Morning News about the sentence. “It’s been 25 years since the virus was identified, but there are still lots of fears,” said Anderson.

The Dallas County prosecutor who handled the trial, Jenni Morse, said that the deadly weapon finding was justified. “No matter how minuscule, there is some risk. That means there is the possibility of causing serious bodily injury or death,” said Morse. Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins stated: “If you look at the facts of this case, it was clear that the defendant intended to cause serious bodily injury.”

Contact with saliva, tears, or sweat has never been shown to result in transmission of HIV.

A page at the CDC’s website, HIV and Its Transmission, states: “HIV has been found in saliva and tears in very low quantities from some AIDS patients.” The subsection “Saliva, Tears, and Sweat” concludes that: “Contact with saliva, tears, or sweat has never been shown to result in transmission of HIV.” On Friday the Dallas County Health Department released a statement explaining that HIV is most commonly spread through sexual contact, sharing needles, or transfusion from an infected blood product.

Finding Quality Industrial Weighing Equipment


byAlma Abell

Finding the right weighing scales for business should be simple and, in many cases, it is. However, finding a high quality weighing scale manufacturer is also important when it comes to finding the right scales for your business. In many industries, the weighing process is an essential part of the firm’s core business, so making the right choices and the right investment is advisable.

Industry specialists

Industrial scales come in all shapes and sizes and are designed to suit a huge range of industries. Some weighing scale manufacturers operate in specific industries – medical, scientific or food processing – while others operate across a range of industries. The latter can be a sensible choice for most industries as this means the firm should have the knowledge, experience and expertise to help you choose the right scales for your process.

Ongoing support

Many manufacturers offer maintenance and servicing options; for those who rely on their weighing equipment for day to day operational purposes this can be a significant factor in choosing the right manufacturer. Constant use is likely to mean regular maintenance checks are required and repairs will also be needed on an occasional basis. Given that industrial scales are likely to be a significant investment, it’s worth ensuring your scales remain in perfect working order.

Future proofing

There are several factors that will influence the capacity of scale that you’ll need. As an investment, it’s worth choosing a capacity that is higher than your current needs. This has two advantages; firstly it offers flexibility if load requirements change in the future and secondly it avoids overloading scales on a regular basis (and consequent damage or loss of accuracy).

Reputation counts

The quality of a manufacturer’s products and their reputation and experience within the industry are essential factors to consider when choosing the right firm to supply your weight equipment needs. While it’s likely that well respected and experienced firms may offer more expensive solutions, it’s important to remember that your scales are likely to be essential to your ability to make profit and that their lifespan is a crucial aspect of the purchasing decision.

Specialist knowledge

Today most firms will offer a range of scales and weighing equipment that can work within automated process. A firm that has experience and technical knowledge in this field will be essential if this is a requirement of your process.

The bottom line

While price will, in many cases, be a significant factor, weighing equipment can be a crucial element within your process and, as in so many areas in life, paying the highest price is likely to make for the best long term investment.

Hardy Process Solutions is headquartered in San Diego, California and the firm is renowned for its inyears.

Obama to ask for special BP claims fund over oil spill


Monday, June 14, 2010

US President Barack Obama, in response to criticism over his handling of the ongoing Gulf of Mexico oil spill, has asked the oil company BP to create a special fund with “substantial” amounts of money to pay claimants over the disaster.

Obama is to make his fourth visit to the Gulf Coast tomorrow, and on Tuesday is scheduled to make a speech about efforts to address the spill.

In a television interview earlier today, the president’s senior strategist David Axelrod commented that “[w]e want to make sure that money is escrowed for the legitimate claims that are going to be, and are being made, by businesses down in the Gulf and we want to make sure that that money is independently administered so that [BP] won’t be slow-walked on these claims,” he added.

The oil spill has poured at least a million barrels of oil into the Gulf since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig blew up on April 20. The oil has now reached the shores of the southern US, and affected many fishermen, oil workers, and business operators in the area.

Senior officials from the Gulf states of Florida and Louisiana both want the oil company to put $7.5 billion into the proposed fund. Officials from neighbouring states also affected by the spill, such as Texas, Alabama, and Mississippi, haven’t yet announced how much they want put into the fund.

BP’s board of directors, meanwhile, is to hold an emergency meeting tomorrow to talk about compensation to those affected. Some economic analysts have suggested that cleanup costs and compensations could drive the company into bankruptcy, although BP commented yesterday that it was “not in discussions with” and had “not engaged any bankruptcy experts”. According to the Los Angeles Times, as of March 31, BP had the equivalent of $6.8 billion in cash available on hand.

Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Communist Party candidate Shona Bracken, Toronto Danforth


Sunday, October 7, 2007

Shona Bracken is running for the Communist Party in the Ontario provincial election in Toronto—Danforth. Wikinews interviewed her regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign.

40 million credit cards compromised


Saturday, June 18, 2005

MasterCard International announced Friday that multiple instances of fraud have been tracked back to CardSystems Solutions, Inc., a company that processes credit card transactions and other payments. Customer names, banks, and account numbers of up to 40 million cardholders have been exposed, of which about 13.9 million are MasterCard-branded cards, the company said. Visa and American Express cards were also affected.

“The breach appears to be the largest yet involving financial data,” said David Sobel, of the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

CardSystems issued a statement late on Friday that said it learned of the potential breach 26 days ago, but that the FBI told the company not to advise the cardholders nor the public at large. CardSystems also said their statement had been vetted by the FBI.

A spokesperson for the FBI said that the agency had asked CardSystems not to disclose information that could compromise the investigation, but that it had not asked CardSystems to fail to disclose the breach at all.

Michael A. Brady, C.F.O. of CardSystems, told the Associated Press that “we’re absolutely blindsided by a press release by the association,” when speaking of MasterCard’s release. A MasterCard spokesperson said that the company was obligated to inform its customers of the breach.

MasterCard spokesperson Sharon Gamsin said that CardSystems was hit by a virus-like computer script that stole customer data for the purpose of fraud. She said MasterCard does not know how the script got into the CardSystem network.

Sobel said this theft “indicates that this is a shadowy industry where the consumer never really knows who is going to be handling and using their personal information. Presumably, the affected consumers thought they were dealing with MasterCard.” Having a third-party process credit card transactions is common practice in the industry.

Air Conditioning Services – Help Is At Hand!


byadmin

Air conditioners are a life saver when t he hottest months of the year come around. It can be a real threat if your air conditioner is not working properly during these hot summer months. It always seems to be a good idea to keep the air conditioner functioning, however, it does not happen that way, does it? Well, there is nothing to worry about even if it is not working because you can always call an HVAC repair company that provides air conditioning services. These companies have experienced and efficient technicians who are qualified to service, repair, and install any kind of air conditioner you want.

The technicians from these companies will visit your home, office, shop or factory and provide thorough, professional air conditioning services and make it work like before. Air conditioning machines have complex systems and thus they may breakdown after years of functioning. In this way you can keep the contact details of your nearest provider of air conditioning services handy in case you need it in an emergency.

One of the best ways to avoid emergencies such as breakdowns is by getting preventive maintenance packages from the HVAC company. These companies provide maintenance packages for your air conditioner on regular intervals. They have separate plans for homes and commercial places and thus you can choose according to your requirement. The preventive maintenance includes routine services like the cleaning of filters, tune-ups, checking the electrical parts, cooling tips, and others. The preventive maintenance services may vary from one company to another.

If you are planning to get one of these preventive maintenance services then you may search for the best air conditioning services around. The air conditioning services offered by the HVAC companies also involve installing new machines. If you have bought a new air conditioner and do not know how to fix it, then the best thing would be to call professionals for help. This will save your time, energy, and give you a professionally executed installation service.

Proper maintenance of your air conditioner will give high efficiency and you can save hugely on your electricity bill. If you are not really comfortable with the complex maintenance yourself then you should contact an HVAC company for technical and professional air conditioning services. One of the best things about these companies is that they work around the clock and provide emergency services at your doorstep no matter what time of the day it is!

Roberts Heating and Air Conditioning Services can provide the air conditioning services you are looking for. Get affordably priced services when you visit them online at Robertsheating.com. Click here for more details.

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Canada’s Scarborough East (Ward 44) city council candidates speak


This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Saturday, November 4, 2006

On November 13, Torontonians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward’s councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto’s ridings is Scarborough East (Ward 44). One candidates responded to Wikinews’ requests for an interview. This ward’s candidates include Donald Blair, Diana Hall, Mohammed Mirza, Ron Moeser, Kevin Richardson, Richard Rieger, Richard Ross, and Kevin Wellington.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

News briefs:July 14, 2010


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Late-night vote sets Obamacare up for filibuster-free repeal


Saturday, January 14, 2017

At 1:30 a.m. on Thursday morning the United States Senate voted to include the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, as part of a budget blueprint. This procedural measure allows most of Obamacare to be repealed by a simple majority rather than the usual requirement of 60 out of the senate’s 100 votes and effectively prevents the use of filibuster.

“We’re working with legislative leaders at this very moment to begin to craft legislation that will repeal the most corrosive elements of Obamacare — the individual mandate, the taxes, the penalties — but at the same time, moving separate legislation that will allow us to introduce the kind of reforms in American health care that’ll lower the cost of health insurance without growing the size of government,” said Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington had a different view, going so far as to call this “stealing health care from Americans.”

The filibuster is a last-ditch tactic in which parties opposed to a certain motion refuse to relinquish the floor until their opponents give in or compromise.

Although the 51-48 vote was mostly along party lines, some Republicans have expressed uncertainty about repealing Obamacare before a replacement system is worked out. Although president-elect Donald Trump has called for a “repeal and replace” plan, saying that a new health care system would be enacted “almost simultaneously,” many in government and the press have expressed doubts about whether this would actually happen.

Senator Susan Collins of Maine said she would like to at least see a well-constructed plan before voting and Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia said repealing Obamacare without replacing it was “unacceptable.” These concerns were shared by members of the House of Representatives. “We need to be voting for a replacement plan at the same time that we vote for repeal,” added Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina. Representative Tom MacArthur of New Jersey agreed, saying, “We’re loading a gun here. I want to know where it’s pointed before we start the process.”

Anna Merlan of Jezebel and Anthony Taylor of the Associated Press dismiss Trump’s timeline as “impossible” given the complicated nature of U.S. congressional workings. Senator Collins agreed, saying “I don’t see any possibility of our being able to come up with a comprehensive reform bill that would replace Obamacare by the end of this month. I just don’t see that as being feasible.”

The Affordable Care Act, which is often cited as a key accomplishment of the Obama administration, has had a mixed reputation, and many conservatives believe a market-based health care system would be more flexible and efficient and less costly, and many believe that the Affordable Care Act only passed because of Obama’s later discredited pledge that no one who liked their current health plan would have to switch. Matt O’Brien of The Washington Post claims a large tax cut that would result for the wealthiest 1% of citizens if Obamacare funds were not converted to other purposes, estimated at about $32,820 annually per person by the Tax Policy Center, is also a significant motive.

Republican Senators set a date of January 27 to repeal Obamacare, according to NBC News. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California says legislation repealing Obamacare and replacing it could ready by late February. According to Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders, as many as 30 million people could lose their health insurance if the ACA is repealed.

Edmund White on writing, incest, life and Larry Kramer


Thursday, November 8, 2007

What you are about to read is an American life as lived by renowned author Edmund White. His life has been a crossroads, the fulcrum of high-brow Classicism and low-brow Brett Easton Ellisism. It is not for the faint. He has been the toast of the literary elite in New York, London and Paris, befriending artistic luminaries such as Salman Rushdie and Sir Ian McKellen while writing about a family where he was jealous his sister was having sex with his father as he fought off his mother’s amorous pursuit.

The fact is, Edmund White exists. His life exists. To the casual reader, they may find it disquieting that someone like his father existed in 1950’s America and that White’s work is the progeny of his intimate effort to understand his own experience.

Wikinews reporter David Shankbone understood that an interview with Edmund White, who is professor of creative writing at Princeton University, who wrote the seminal biography of Jean Genet, and who no longer can keep track of how many sex partners he has encountered, meant nothing would be off limits. Nothing was. Late in the interview they were joined by his partner Michael Caroll, who discussed White’s enduring feud with influential writer and activist Larry Kramer.