Timelines –1/12

Two New York Archbishops promoted to cardinal 

It was recently announced that New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan will become a cardinal in the Roman Catholic Church. 61-year-old Dolan is one of 22 prelates who will be elevated to cardinal status at the Vatican on February 18. Governor Cuomo released this statement: “I would like to offer congratulations to my friend Archbishop of New York, Timothy Dolan, on the announcement that he will be elevated to Cardinal in the Catholic Church. Archbishop Dolan has been a faithful and dedicated leader, who has always put service to others as his first priority. Our state has been blessed by Archbishop Dolan’s vision and leadership, and I offer him my support and friendship as he continues to lead the Catholic Church here in New York.” Also being promoted is Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, who is the Grand Master of Holy Sepulchre of Baltimore as well as the former rector of St. Joseph’s Seminary in Yonkers. O’Brien himself was born in the Bronx, but grew up in Westchester.

 

DOC thruway crash caused by unidentified swerving car

State police believe that a swerving car was the cause of the crash involving a New York City Department of Corrections bus, which was transporting 16 prisoners along the northbound side of the New York State Thruway. The crash happened just before 10:30 a.m. last Wednesday. The driver of the bus, Roy Zender, 43, told police that the unidentified car moved into the center lane, swerving in the bus’s path. The DOC bus then swerved to avoid hitting the car, slammed into the guardrail, causing the bus to tip and slide across the lanes of traffic into the middle of the road. All 19 passengers suffered minor injuries. The DOC has stated that there is no evidence to suggest that the prisoners caused the crash in any way as a means to escape. The inmate passengers were taken to Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern for medical treatment in a cordoned-off area of the ER.

 

Mele, Rockland sex offender on trial

The murder trial is set to begin for a Rockland sex offender who is accused of murdering an aspiring dancer from Texas. Laura Garza was found in Pennsylvania over a year after her disappearance. Garza met Michael Mele at a Manhattan club at the end of 2008 and disappeared. Her body was then found in April of 2010 just outside Scranton, Pennsylvania. Jury selection started on Monday in an Orange County Court house. Mele was registered as a sex offender in Rockland after he was convicted of masturbating and exposing himself in front of women as well as inappropriately touching several women in the Palisades Center Mall parking lot from December or 2006 to April 2007.

 

Nigerian terrorists attack church

Nigeria’s al-Qaeda partners, Boko Haram, attacked a Christian church, shooting and killing 12 churchgoers during a Sunday service in the northeastern Nigerian city of Yola. Many other people in attendance were also injured. This followed a promise made over the radio by Police Commander Hafiz Ringim that northern Christians would be safe and protected. These are the same terrorists who set off bombs through Nigeria on Christmas Day looking to harm Christians celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. At least 40 people were killed while many more were injured. Back in August, Boko Haram attacked the U.N. headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria via suicide bomber. The bomber, who recorded a video prior to the attack, said the U.N. was evil and the attack was designed to “send a message to the U.S. President.”

 

Debt equal to U.S. yearly economy

U.S. Debt is now over $15.23 trillion. That is about equal to the value of everything the U.S. produces in one year. Long-term estimates suggest that the debt will grow faster than the economy. President Obama’s 2012 budget has the debt going up past $26 trillion. Among the countries in the world with sophisticated economies, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan and Portugal all have debts larger than their economies right now.

 

Gunman robs Nanuet Bank

Clarkstown police are on the hunt for a gunman who robbed Palisades Federal Credit Union bank on Route 59 in Nanuet. The bandit made off with an estimated $30,000 on Tuesday. This is the second time since last spring the bank has been robbed. The man reportedly entered the bank around 9:30 a.m. using a silver handgun, and threatened the employees, telling them to lock the front door and demanded money. After taking the cash, the robber escaped out the back door. The surveillance camera captured the entire robbery on tape. Police still have no leads on the man’s identity. The man is described as being around 5’6″, black, about 180 pounds and has a big black beard. He is thought to be between 25 and 40. He was wearing a black sweatshirt and dark gray sweatpants. Police believe this man could be the same man who robbed the bank in 2011.

 

Governor Cuomo addresses New York teacher evaluation issue 

“As I said in my State of the State Address, this state is facing a crisis in our education system and how we hold our schools accountable for their performance in educating our children,” Governor Cuomo recently said, speaking of the rubric controversy through Race to the Top and the lack of an agreement reached. The proposed system looks to correct the fact that New York pays the most per student versus any other state in the country, yet only ranks 38 in the nation. “It does a disservice to both the student and the taxpayer,” said Cuomo. Cuomo believes the problem lies in the education bureaucracy in the state rather than on the classroom. Teachers’ unions feel like the proposed rubric process will only feed this bureaucracy. Secretary Duncan recently released a report saying New York is on the watch-list for failure in education. Cuomo says this is a warning to the unstable school districts across the state as well as the unions that they are jeopardizing education by failing to come up with a teacher evaluation system. Cuomo has said for the immediate future, “I call on the State Department of Education, local school districts and the union leadership to expedite their negotiations on a teacher evaluation system to prevent the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.” This gets more to the root of the issue. A teacher evaluation process will not necessarily improve the education in New York, but rather it will bring in more state funding. However, Cuomo has said, “despite the powerful interests working to protect the status quo at the expense of our students’ success, this state must become a national leader in student performance.”

 

Casey Anthony video diaries surface

Casey Anthony videos have been recently “leaked,” according to her lawyers. They claim that these videos are part of her therapy process. Television news host, Nancy Grace has come out publically disputing this, saying that is more and likely a publicity stunt. The first was a video of Casey talking about her life and how happy she was to own items of her own, like a camera and a new dog. The second was one where Anthony shows off new piercings she is very proud of in her nose and ear. It has also been leaked that she has a new boyfriend, and is attending church regularly. Casey Anthony was a Florida mom who was accused and later acquitted of murdering her infant daughter. In the months following her daughter’s death she was photographed partying at bars and an officer reported that her trunk smelled as if there had been a dead body in it, making the case’s outcome especially controversial. Since the ruling, her whereabouts remain unknown to protect her safety.