Magician, actor & Scientologist Larry Anderson wants his money back
. Although he had modest success in Hollywood, he was known to millions as the narrator of Scientology's introductory film Orientation; certainly his most famous line was said for that movie:
"If you leave this room after seeing this film and walk out and never mention Scientology again, you are perfectly free to do so. It would be stupid. But you can do it. You can also dive off a bridge or blow your brains out. That is your choice."Listen in
as Larry negotiates with Church officials to recover $120,000 he deposited with the church in anticipation of receiving services from it.
In related news, Adams County, CO DA is charging Scientology OT7 Rev. Rex Fowler
, owner of Scientology-run Fowler Software with murder and attempted murder for shooting ex-partner Tommy Ciancio three times in the head as he attempted to collect his severance pay, then turning the gun on himself, firing one shot up through his chin. Authorities initially believed Fowler was the victim
based on witness testimony, but forensics showed that Ciancio could not have fired the three shots that killed him.
posted by scalefree
on Jan 26, 2010 -
The Dirtiest Player.
Was it only last season that Marvin Harrison was still catching TD passes for Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts? Now, in the wake of a brazen but mysterious Philadelphia gunfight - many details of which are reported here for the first time - the man who holds the NFL record for most receptions in a season may yet find himself with a permanent record of a different sort. (SLGQ) [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat
on Jan 16, 2010 -
The threat of a mild punishment imposed reliably and immediately has a much greater deterrent effect than the threat of a severe punishment that is delayed and uncertain. A state trial judge in Hawaii, was frustrated with the cases on his docket. Nearly half of the people appearing before him were convicted offenders with drug problems who had been sentenced to probation rather than prison and then repeatedly violated the terms of that probation by missing appointments or testing positive for drugs. Whether out of neglect or leniency, probation officers would tend to overlook a probationer’s first 5 or 10 violations, giving the offender the impression that he could ignore the rules. But eventually, the officers would get fed up and recommend that Alm revoke probation and send the offender to jail to serve out his sentence. That struck Alm as too harsh, but the alternative — winking at probation violations — struck him as too soft. “I thought, This is crazy, this is a crazy way to change people’s behavior,” he told me recently. So Alm decided to try something different. [more inside]
posted by caddis
on Jan 10, 2010 -
was one of the high society news makers in the 80's, considered by some to be on Donald Trump's level. While things have gone alright for the Donald, Khashoggi hasn't done as well... [more inside]
posted by reenum
on Dec 14, 2009 -
The first four issues of Stray Bullets set the world on fire when they came out. Paper burns, you see, and a comic book as inflammatory as Stray Bullets just had to be burned. The religious right burned them. The Godless left burned them. The people in the middle felt left out and burned them too. Only a few copies survived and are probably worth millions by now. Inaccessible to the common man, the wonders of the digital universe have finally arrived to allow you—the average Joe—to see what the fuss was all about.
posted by Artw
on Nov 16, 2009 -
Crime: A Tale of Two Cities. When "The Wire" gained popularity in Great Britain, we were contacted by a London-based journalist who proposed a job swap. Mark Hughes, a crime reporter with The Independent, a national newspaper in the United Kingdom, wanted to come to Baltimore to see if the city’s police officers, drug dealers, prosecutors and politicians bore any resemblance to those on show. We agreed to complete the exchange by sending our police reporter, Justin Fenton, to London to compare crime trends. [more inside]
posted by HumanComplex
on Nov 12, 2009 -
Leeches, horror film
wonders, and now crime fighters
. Police cracked the case of a home invasion and safe robbery when they found one of the suspects' blood inside a leech on the floor and matched his dna.
posted by caddis
on Oct 20, 2009 -
Having previously put together a post
with links to stories from the 2009 edition of Best of American Crime Reporting, I decided to go to earlier editions to gather together what is available on the web. Starting in 2007 with The Tainted Kidney
: Charles Graeber, New York. A serial killer who chooses to donate his kidney has his motives questioned. [more inside]
posted by dances_with_sneetches
on Oct 17, 2009 -
Then, in November 2007, exactly three years after the disappearance of Simjanoska, another woman from Kičevo went missing. Fifty-six-year-old Lubica Ličoska was, like Simjanoska, a custodian, and she also lived in the same section of town. When the similarities were noted, locals suddenly remembered Gorica Pavelska. She was seventy-three, a retired custodian who went missing in May 2003. No one had thought much of it at the time. She might have suffered a stroke in some remote place, they had speculated, or gone to work in Skopje. No trace of her was ever found and the whole business had been forgotten. But now it appeared that little Kičevo was home to a serial killer, and Vlado Taneski’s editors smelled a big story.
- The Mask of Sanity: On the Trail of a Serial Killer in Macedonia
by Dimiter Kenarov. An account of the Kičevo Monster and the killer's surprising identity. [Warning: Descriptions of the murders include graphic details]
posted by Kattullus
on Aug 5, 2009 -
Editor Marty Halpern looks back at the career of George Alec Effinger (part 1
, part 2
, part 3
), a prolific author best known for his work set in the Budayeen
, a walled city in a future Islamic state, teeming with gangsters, hustlers and transsexual prostitutes, many of them habitual users of plug in personality modules. The noirish tone and exotic technology of the Marîd Audran
books (When Gravity Fails, A Fire In The Sun, The Exile Kiss) made Effinger one of the leading lights in the cyberpunk movie, and spawned a videogame
- a rare attempt at a graphical adventure from Infocom - and an RPG setting
. Sadly Effinger faded from prominence
after that, and he suffered from a number of health and financial setbacks before passing away
in 2002. His work has had somewhat of a resurgence in popularity of late, with the Marîd Audran books coming back into print in 2007, a long with a collection
containing The Wolves of Memory, Effinger's personal favourite amongst his novels.
posted by Artw
on Jun 9, 2009 -
The commercials are all over television — and they certainly are attention-grabbing. They’re the ones where the heavy, bald guy is sitting in his easy chair talking in a squeaky female voice about all the clothes he bought — including a bustier. Or the little old lady speaking with the gruff voice of a younger man about the sweet motorcycle she now owned. Identity theft is a serious crime — one that is occurring with an alarming frequency. The Identity Theft Manifesto
explains how criminals get your personal info
, and what you can do about it
posted by netbros
on Jun 1, 2009 -
In a case
reminiscent of Bernard Goetz
, pharmacist Jerome Ersland was held up by two gun-wielding men, shot one of them in the head, and then, when the other had left, shot the prone man several more times, killing him (store security video
). Now he's being charged with first-degree murder, and is the center of intense controversy about whether he engaged in legitimate self-defense by making absolutely sure his attacker was incapacitated or in an unjustifiable vigilante-style execution. Complicating matters is the fact that Jerome is white and the robbers black.
posted by shivohum
on May 30, 2009 -