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Cue ‘Law & Order’ dun-dun, because trial starts for widow of Orlando nightclub gunman

Reuters

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By Joey Roulette

ORLANDO, Fla. (Reuters) – The federal trial for the widow of the gunman who killed 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, began on Thursday with the selection of jurors, who will decide whether she aided her husband in one of the deadliest U.S. mass shootings.

Noor Salman, wife of Omar Mateen, is the only person charged in the June 2016 attack on the Pulse nightclub and faces up to life in prison if convicted. Mateen, 29, died in an exchange of gunfire with police at the club.

Salman was at home with the couple’s then 3-year-old son at the time of the attack. But prosecutors said she knew of her husband’s plans to launch an attack and did nothing to stop it.

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials collect evidence from the parking lot of the Pulse gay night club, the site of a mass shooting days earlier, in Orlando, Florida, U.S., June 15, 2016. REUTERS/Adrees Latif/File Photo

Some protesters gathered outside the Orlando courthouse Thursday morning held posters encouraging a guilty verdict and calling for the death penalty. The trial could take as long as a month, court officers said.

Although she initially denied the accusations, Salman later told federal investigators she knew that her husband was watching recruitment videos for Islamic State in Iraq and that he had purchased an assault rifle and examined three possible attack locations, they said in court documents.

“The defendant aided and abetted her husband in this mass-murder and repeatedly lied to law enforcement during and after the attack in an effort to obstruct the FBI’s ongoing investigation,” they said in a court filing.

Defense lawyers contend the U.S. government could not show any direct links between Mateen and Islamic State before the attack and has provided no evidence that Salman aided her husband.

“It was Mateen, not Noor, who decided to attack the Pulse Night Club, Mateen who chose to drive to the club, Mateen who purchased the weapon and ammunition, and Mateen who alone carried out the attack,” they said in court filings.

Salman, 31, was indicted on two charges: obstruction of justice for alleged false statements to federal investigators and aiding and abetting Mateen in his attempt to provide material support to a terrorist organization.

In December, the judge denied a request by Salman’s attorneys to hold the proceedings outside of Orlando.

Mateen opened fire shortly after the last call for drinks on the club’s popular Latin night. He gunned down patrons on the dance floor and sprayed bullets at others hiding in bathroom stalls.

Holding hostages during his standoff with police, Mateen claimed allegiance to a leader of the Islamic State militant group before he was fatally shot.

(Additional reporting by Bernie Woodall in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Frances Kerry)

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Not Fake News

LAX Now Allows Marijuana In Carry-On

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Get ready for high flying.

Los Angeles International Airport — also known as LAX —  has announced that it will permit travelers to bring small amounts of legal marijuana through security in their carry-on bags.

“The Los Angeles Airport Police Department will allow passengers to travel through LAX with up to 28.5 grams of marijuana and 8 grams of concentrated marijuana,” reads a statement on LAX’s official website, which was posted in September 2018.

California passed Proposition 64, aka the Adult Use of Marijuana Act in 2016, meaning that as of of January 1, 2018, it became legal in California “for individuals 21 years of age or older to possess up to 28.5 grams of marijuana and 8 grams of concentrated marijuana for personal consumption.”

If you’re traveling with marijuana through LAX, study up on the laws in your origin and destination airport before packing your bags.

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Gay Penguin Couple Kidnapped Straight Couple’s Penguin Baby

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In a time when you hope a news story is fake, this tale about gay penguins will make you want the news to actually be real. And it is!

Love is love. Even penguins know that. The large flightless seabirds also know that when two souls find love, having a baby is often the next step. That being said, a pair of gay penguins at a Denmark zoo “kidnapped” a straight couple’s hatchling and tried to take it in as their own, a zookeeper says.

And it was all caught on video.

 

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Trump to Female Reporter: ‘You’re not thinking. You never do’

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President Donald Trump insulted a female reporter in the Rose Garden on Monday, telling her she “never” thinks before asking a question. Trump called on Cecilia Vega, a White House reporter for ABC News and started making a joke out her.

“She’s shocked that I picked her,” said Trump as a flock of staffers behind him — mostly men — smiled or laughed. “She’s, like, in a state of shock.”

“I’m not,” Vega said, rising from her seat. “Thank you, Mr. President.”

Trump, apparently mishearing “thank you” as “thinking,” responded with a seemingly unprovoked jab: “I know you’re not thinking. You never do.”

A White House transcript alleges Trump said “not thanking,” a non-sequitur given Vega had said “thank you” immediately prior. Now that’s pathetic.

Watch it play out:

President Trump insults ABC News reporter

President Trump took a swipe at a female reporter during his news conference earlier today, telling her "I know you're not thinking. You never do."—>> STORY HERE: http://bit.ly/2OXXV5Y

Posted by WPTV on Monday, October 1, 2018

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