A disagreement among friends on a fishing trip in Florida escalated to murder, and investigators found their suspect in the most unexpected of places — Sunday morning church services, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
It also happened that the guest speaker that day was Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, officials said in a news release.
The killing happened around 10 p.m. on Friday, March 10, as three anglers were staying at a home in Hillsborough County’s unincorporated Ruskin community, officials said. Ruskin is about 20 miles south of downtown Tampa.
“That evening, the three went to a local bar and later returned home. A verbal altercation ensued. … During the verbal altercation, the suspect discharged a firearm, which struck the victim,” the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office reports.
“Once deputies arrived, they discovered a male victim with an upper body gun shot wound, and began performing life-saving measures.”
The victim died at a hospital. His name has not been released.
“Deputies went to a church in Polk City, after learning that Skeen may be there,” the Polk County Sheriff’s Office reports.
“Deputies managed to get Skeen outside of the church without disrupting the service. Skeen asked … if he could go back inside for the rest of the service so he could ‘dedicate his life to the Lord before going to jail.’”
The arresting sergeant refused, but did offer to pray with Skeen before booking him.
“And that’s just what they did. Suspect and deputy prayed together outside of the church, and then off he went to jail,” the Polk County Sheriff’s Office says.
“One more interesting note about this story is that this particular church had a guest speaker at that service — Sheriff Grady Judd.”
Details of Judd having any involvement in the arrest were not released.
Skeen was charged with second-degree murder with a firearm, officials said.
The family of a onetime football prodigy who collapsed and died during a transfer from a Los Angeles county jail to a state-run psychiatric hospital earlier this year said on Tuesday they believe he was beaten by law enforcement officials prior to his death.
In court filings obtained by TMZ Sports, an attorney for the family accused Los Angeles County of “grossly misrepresenting the cause and circumstances of Stanley Wilson Jr.’s death.”
At a news conference on Tuesday, Wilson’s father said, “We just want the truth. It hurts really bad to bury your child.”
Stanley Wilson Jr. played for the Detroit Lions from 2005 to 2007 before tearing his Achilles tendon, an injury which ultimately cut short his career. His family described him as a charismatic and loving man whose life careened off the rails due to mental illness, including what they said was chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disorder caused by repeated blows to the head that can only be diagnosed posthumously.
The disease may have contributed to Wilson’s becoming withdrawn, anxious, and depressed, the family said Tuesday, and to a string of arrests that ended in August 2022, when police took him into custody on a trespassing charge.
“Due to his mental illness, the county found him not able to stand trial, not able to provide assistance to counsel,” explained John Carpenter, the Los Angeles-based attorney representing the family. He was held in Twin Towers Correctional Facility until his death in early February during the move to Metropolitan State Hospital.
Wilson’s mother, Dr. D. Pulane Lucas, said that county officials told her that her son had fallen out of a chair during the mental health facility’s intake process. The family elected to conduct a second autopsy, with Carpenter telling The Daily Beast in mid-February, “Early reports said ‘no suspicion of foul play.’ That is not the camp that we’re in.”
Now, according to Carpenter, photos of Wilson’s body are in “stark contrast to what we’ve been hearing,” indicating he may have been subjected to excessive force prior to his death. “There were fresh wounds to his forehead, which appear to have been caused by a shoe,” the attorney said, suggesting Wilson had either been kicked or stomped.
Additionally, ligature marks on his wrists suggest that Wilson may have been restrained by handcuffs during the time of the alleged assault, Carpenter said.
The family is seeking more than $45 million in damages in relation to three claims filed on behalf of Wilson’s mother, father, and estate.
A statement from the Houston Police Department on Friday said: “The complainant dropped her possessions on the ground, so the suspect grabbed what he thought was the envelope and began to run away when he realized he had the wrong envelope.
“The suspect then ran back to the complainant, picked her up, and body-slammed her onto the ground. The suspect grabbed the envelope containing the crash and then fled the location.”
According to figures from the Texas Department of Public Safety, there were 22,320 robberies in the Lone Star State in 2021, down from 26,750 in 2020. The change represents a drop of 16.6 percent.
The public safety department added that the crime rate for robberies was 75.6 for every 100,000 people in Texas in 2021, a fall of 17 percent from 2020.
Surveillance footage showed the robber body-slammed Truong at one point during the attack and left her on the ground.
According to Fox26, the attack left Truong with a damaged spinal cord and she is now paralyzed, unable to walk or use the bathroom alone.
The single mother now relies on a wheelchair and is being helped by her three children who are aged 13, 15, and 20, and are all in education.
Family members told the network that the man stole about $4,300 from them and that money had been saved up so she could visit family in Vietnam.
Truong told Fox26: “I’m feeling very horrible and sad at the same time.”
Her son, An Duong, added: “I can still go to school, but my mind is just messed up thinking about her, worrying that nobody is going to watch out for her.
“It’s been really bad. We have to pay rent and stuff and she’s the only one that can work and help us. We don’t know what to do,” her daughter Van Duong said.
The family told the network that doctors believe there is only a 50 percent chance that Truong will make a full recovery.
Van added: “If a miracle happens then she can walk again.”
Police have said the suspect they are looking for is a Black man in his early 20s of skinny build between 5’8 and 5’9 in height and is estimated to weigh 140 lbs.
People have been asked to contact Crime Stoppers of Houston directly if they have any information related to this investigation. Information leading to the charging and/or arrest of any felony suspects may result in a cash payment of up to $5,000.
Tipsters must contact Crime Stoppers directly to remain anonymous and to be considered for a cash payment by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477), submitting an online tip at http://www.crime-stoppers.org, or through the Crime Stoppers mobile app.
Pentagon police found a military servicemember dead in the building’s parking lot Tuesday afternoon, the Defense Department confirmed later that evening, according to media reports.
An investigation into the incident is ongoing, Pentagon Press Secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder confirmed in a statement to the media, although he did not disclose further detail, according to The Hill. Building protection authorities had received a distress call at approximately 3:30 p.m. Tuesday and found the service member in his vehicle, already dead.
“At approximately 3:30 p.m. EDT today the Pentagon Operations Center received a call requesting a welfare check on a military service member. Pentagon Police Officers responded to North Parking and discovered the service member in his vehicle apparently deceased,” Ryder said, according to media reports.
Arlington County Medical Services also responded and confirmed the service member’s state, The Hill reported. The release did not contain any additional information.
“Duck Dynasty” star Missy Robertson gave a firsthand account of the “pushback” she, Christian actor Kirk Cameron and women’s sports advocate Riley Gaines received from staff at a public library in Hendersonville, Tennessee, where they had planned a story-hour for children.
On the “Unashamed” podcast with Phil and Jase Robertson, Missy said library staff were disruptive as she and Cameron attempted to film marketing videos for their books before the Feb. 25 event. She described how staff members made loud noises and played music from behind the front desk after they had asked for about a minute of quiet to record their videos.
“[The lady at the front desk of the library] said, ‘We’re just trying to look for things to deal with our stress.’ Stre— … what stress? … We’re just standing there with a camera doing a marketing video,” Robertson said. “That’s when I turned my phone on. I started recording. I was like, ‘This is blatant and ridiculous.'”
Cameron is on a national tour of public libraries to promote his children’s book, “As You Grow,” which shares biblical wisdom with kids and families. These events are a direct response to “drag queen story hours,” which have grown in popularity at public libraries across the country. Robertson, the author of children’s book “Because You’re My Family,” and Gaines, who lives in the Hendersonville area, were invited to Cameron’s event at the public library as special guests.
Cameron’s publisher, Texas-based Brave Books, previously told Fox News Digital that a head official at Hendersonville Public Library had sought to cancel the event after he learned that many families with children were going to attend. Library officials initially said their facility could not handle a large-scale event, but they relented after the library’s board of directors and the community pushed back on library staff.
Though the event happened as planned with an overflow crowd, Brave Books said the library staff “treated us terribly, unfortunately.”
According to Robertson’s account, “hundreds” of people with children were lined up outside, in the rain in February, to attend the event. She expressed anger that these families were not permitted to wait inside, where it was dry and warm.
“Not only were they rude to us … they were super rude to their entire community that lived there in Hendersonville, Tennessee, because that is a public library and they could have invited all those people who were standing in the rain to come and form lines inside the library, down the aisles, sit on the ground,” Robertson said. “We weren’t even reading in the library part, we were down the hall in a conference room. They wouldn’t let them in. They made them stand outside in the freezing cold with their children in the rain. Total rudeness to me.”
Hendersonville Public Library did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Although there was “negative pushback,” Cameron said he was happy for the opportunity to address hundreds of families at his event with messages of faith, family and country — and that this is all part of his effort to “take back the hearts and minds of America’s children.”
He told Fox News Digital, “Many public institutions have been infiltrated with individuals who intentionally silence wholesome movements like ours — while families are crying out for a return to the faith-based virtue and American values that lead to our blessing and protection.”
Robertson was dismayed that an event promoting faith-based values got negative pushback.
“This is not in California or New York City. This is in Nashville. People are moving to Nashville and the surrounding areas to get away from this stuff,” she said on the podcast. “It’s not just happening in, quote, ‘liberal’ areas. They’re coming for your kids!”
Reached for comment, Hendersonville Mayor Jamie Clary told Fox News Digital that library employees are county employees, and that the mayor’s office has no authority over them. He touted Hendersonville’s status as a faith-based community, observing that, “very often, the first question asked of a Hendersonville newcomer is ‘Do you have a church home yet?’”
He said he would invite Cameron, Robertson and Gaines to return and see the rest of the city.
“If they would like to attend a city board meeting, they would be welcome to lead us in the pledge and prayer—our typical opening. Usually, I invite a local pastor to provide the prayer; other times our board members do it,” Clary said. “Three years ago, I received a letter from a national organization protesting the prayers at our meetings. I threw the letter in the trash.”
The University of Idahomurder suspect has turned to religion while awaiting his fate behind bars. Bryan Kohberger, 28, has been locked up at the Latah County Jail in Idaho without bail since January, and RadarOnline.com has learned he’s “found God” and meets with a pastor every Sunday.
The former Ph.D. student-turned-murder suspect keeps to himself in jail and has found comfort in some one-on-one time with the religious leader. According to inmates — who spilled what it’s like to share space with the man accused of the horrific quadruple slayings — Kohberger leaves his cell around 7 PM on Sundays to attend a private religious service in the jail library.
He’s allegedly escorted by two jail guards to meet with the pastor, who leads him in prayer.
“He sits down with the pastor and receives his own private mass,” a source at the jail told Daily Mail. “It’s just the two of them. And no, I have no idea what they might talk about.”
Kohberger also gets access to television and is obsessed with watching one thing: himself.
One inmate spilled that Kohberger follows all the coverage of his case. “He watches himself all the time,” the unnamed jailbird shared. “It’s really kind of bizarre.”
The inmate said the accused murderer “always has the same expression, or non-expression,” adding, “He just looks straight ahead. I’ve never even seen his eyebrows or mouth move. He never says anything.”
As RadarOnline.com reported, Kohberger sits alone in a private cell and is kept away from other inmates at Latah County Jail. He follows a strict vegan diet — which is being met by the facility.
One official at the jail said there have been zero incidents involving Kohberger since his arrival, adding the alleged murderer is well-behaved. Fellow inmates are in awe of him.
“We’d always talk about the fact he was in the same jail with us,” newly released inmate Kyler Ledettold Daily Mail. “Nobody liked the guy, I could tell you that. There’s a lot of hatred. But we were in awe of him. Nothing like that really happens around Moscow. It shocked a lot of people.”
Others hope he’s sentenced to death.
“I hope he gets the death penalty,” jailbird Harrison Papillon said. “I’d be shocked if he didn’t.”
Kohberger was arrested on December 30 for allegedly stabbing Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Ethan Chapin, 20, and Xana Kernodle, 20, to death inside an off-campus home on November 13.
Kohberger was charged with four counts of murder and one count of felony burglary. The affidavit revealed details that linked Kohberger to the crime, including DNA found on the knife sheath matching his, his white Hyundai Elantra, and his cell phone records.
Prince Andrew “may have to write a memoir” in order to bolster his ailing finances, a friend of the prince has explained, following reports that he was left out of the queen’s will, and her entire estate passed to King Charles.
The friend said, “He has done everything he has been asked to do. He settled the lawsuit, he kept a low profile, he hasn’t complained. His mother always valued his loyalty. She would be aghast at his allowance being reduced. He may have to write a memoir.”
Asked if writing a memoir was a serious prospect that Andrew has actually talked about, the friend said: “It’s being talked about regularly. Sarah has had real success with her books and has great publishing contacts. Harry’s book has proved that there is no shortage of appetite for stories about the royal family. Why shouldn’t Andrew tell his side of the story now his mother is gone?”
Sarah’s books are published by the romantic imprint Mills and Boon, which is part of Harper Collins. An email to Harper Collins’s non-fiction division, asking about the possibility of publishing an Andrew memoir, went unanswered. Several other publishers approached by The Daily Beast declined to comment, which hints at just how controversial publishing his memoir would be, especially if it took aim at his sex abuse accuser, Virginia Giuffre.
Given the toxicity of Andrew’s reputation it seems likely that mainstream publishers would not want be seen giving him a huge payday.
“I wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole.”
He may face an uphill struggle to secure a lucrative deal with a reputable publisher; one independent publisher told news outlets: “I wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole.”
However, another literary agent stated that any book by Andrew, while not in the same commercial league as writings by Harry or Meghan, could fetch “several million” dollars.
Asked if reports that Virginia Giuffre is contemplating publishing a book were contributing to Andrew’s thought processes around doing a memoir of his own, the friend of Andrew’s said they didn’t believe it was “a major factor.”
The simple fact is that a decent wedge of cash might be more than enough of a temptation for a broke Andrew to put pen to paper. He has reportedly been left “bewildered” by the failure of his mother to bequeath him a substantial inheritance, and is being pressured to move out of his 30-room home, Royal Lodge, by his brother. He has reportedly been offered the cheaper-to-run former home of Harry and Meghan, Frogmore Cottage, instead.
Writing a memoir would almost result in total excommunication from the royal fold, but given that his brother has made it very clear there is no path back to public life for him, even going so far as to ponder banning him from wearing a special ceremonial velvet costume at the coronation in May, and that there will be no significant annual stipend in the years to come, he might be persuaded that he doesn’t have a great deal to lose.
Andrew’s potential for making money via other avenues is also severely limited; no mainstream, family-friendly brand in the west would partner with him and he would be ill-advised to travel to the United States, where he is still wanted for questioning by the FBI over his involvement with Jeffrey Epstein.
However, Andrew still has close contacts (and supporters) in parts of the Middle East; last year he went on a private jaunt to Bahrain to stay with the royal family there in great luxury. He allegedly travelled on a private jet belonging to a Swiss billionaire.
Neither Buckingham Palace, nor Andrew’s legal representative responded to requests for comment made by The Daily Beast.
Andrew Lownie, a historian and author of royal books including Traitor King, The Scandalous Exile of the Duke & Duchess of Windsor who also has a long and storied career as a literary agent, said that while there was no doubt a book by Andrew would sell, if it “washed dirty linen in public” he said he thought it would only “make matters worse” for Andrew himself.
Lownie, who is working on a new biography of the prince, entitled Prince Andrew: A Prince of the Blood to be published next year said: “The lesson of the Newsnight interview is that the less he says the better. His story is not very edifying. Who would believe what he wrote, anyway? He has been shown to be a liar and a book would only make matters worse.
“There have been rumors circulating for a while that he is planning an interview or a book or to try and overturn the settlement. But I very much doubt it is all anything more than a negotiating tactic [to get a better settlement from Charles]. He is a great supporter of the monarchy, and I think he is actually more supportive of his brother than is sometimes portrayed.”
“The British upper classes fear death duties more than death itself”
— Friend of King Charles
The threat of Andrew dabbling in the literary world is unlikely to trouble the king too much, a friend of Charles told The Daily Beast.
“Harry’s book seems to have only damaged Harry,” said the friend. “Of course a book by Andrew would be unwelcome but it would only harm Andrew in the long run.”
Asked if the reports in the Sun on Sunday this weekend that Andrew had been left out of the queen’s will were true, thus enabling the estate, worth an estimated $780 million, to benefit from a “monarch-to-monarch” exemption to inheritance tax, the friend said: “I’m sure the queen passed on her estate in the most tax-efficient way possible. Charles is the boss now and she clearly trusted Charles to do the right thing. I can’t believe any of this would have come as a surprise to Andrew. The British upper classes fear death duties more than death itself, so it wouldn’t surprise me at all.”
A man who appeared on the game show Family Feud allegedly shot and killed his estranged wife, according to authorities, before reportedly attending her wake.
The wife was found dead in her home with multiple gunshot wounds after she failed to pick up her children from school.
Timothy Bliefnick, 39, from Quincy, Illinois, was arrested on Monday and charged with his wife Rebecca Bliefnick’s death.
The 41-year-old nurse and mother to three boys was discovered by a family member on February 23.
Timothy reportedly attended Rebecca’s wake but didn’t go to her funeral.
The estranged husband said it was because he didn’t want to be a distraction, the Daily Beast reports.
Police arrested Timothy 12 days after they searched his home on March 1.
“Given the circumstances, it is not surprising that the search warrant was issued and executed,” Timothy’s lawyer, Casey Schnack, told Muddy River News at the time.
“My only surprise is that it took this long to do,” Schnack said.
“It is just as important that QPD conduct such as investigation to rule Timothy OUT as a suspect so that investigative efforts can be spent elsewhere.”
Timothy and Rebecca got married in 2009 but were in the middle of a divorce when the wife and mother was killed.
The couple was reportedly separated for several years before Rebecca was shot, according to online court records obtained by KHQA, which the outlet discovered were removed, along with several other documents after a judge ordered them to be sealed.
Rebecca, or someone working on her behalf, also reportedly filed a restraining order against Timothy and then later one against her father-in-law, according to the now-deleted court records.
“Seeking an [order of protection] in a divorce is not uncommon gameplay in Adams County,” Timothy’s lawyer told Fox News.
“The state’s attorney’s office needs a narrative. It appears that domestic violence is that narrative.”
After that, Timothy reportedly filed his own restraining order against Rebecca, the now-deleted court records revealed.
The Bliefnick family, including Timothy, went on the hit TV show Family Feud three years ago, but Rebecca didn’t make an appearance at the podium.
After Rebecca’s death, her family said that while they “remain heartbroken,” they are grateful to all who have worked tirelessly in service of justice for Rebecca, the Daily Beast reports.
Timothy was working at Quincy Farm Products in business development, according to his LinkedIn profile, which is no longer public.
However, Timothy isn’t an employee at the company anymore, Philip J. Hildebrand Jr., the company’s vice president of finance and administration, told the outlet.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Rebecca Bliefnick and her family, and we’re hoping for justice,” Hildebrand said.
Timothy was charged with two counts of first-degree murder and home invasion.
Law enforcement said the girl had been abducted from Dallas, Texas.
Law enforcement rescued a missing 13-year-old girl from a locked shed in Lexington, North Carolina, after federal authorities provided a tip about the missing minor.
Davidson County Sheriff Richie Simmons said his office received a tip from an FBI Violent Crimes Task Force about a minor who had been abducted from Dallas. Officials were able to locate the missing girl in an externally-locked shed behind a home in Lexington, North Carolina.
Simmons said that Jorge Camacho, 34, used a social media messenger to lure her from her home to his car.
“The content of the chat was consistent with grooming and enticement, and he enticed her to actually leave the home where he picked her up in the area,” Simmons said.
The timeline of the abduction is still unclear, as the investigation is ongoing; however, authorities said that they were able to use “camera activity” to determine the vehicle associated with the abduction and the suspect’s identity within 10 minutes of getting the tip.
Authorities searched Camacho’s home, finding the abducted girl in a shed on the property’s exterior.
According to Davidson, North Carolina, records, Camacho was booked at Davidson County Jail on Saturday. He has been charged with multiple offenses, including rape, child abduction, and human trafficking. He is being held on a $1.2 million bond.
“I thank god that we were able to find this young girl; it may not be that case forever,” Simmons said, noting that his office had investigated a concerning number of similar cases.
More than 2,100 people were referred to federal authorities for human trafficking offenses in 2020, according to data from the Department of Justice, a 62% increase in referrals since 2011.
According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 365,348 children were missing in 2020, with estimates suggesting that 30% were actively trafficked.
Simmons said parents should be mindful of their children’s social media activity, given their potential susceptibility to bad actors.
“We’ve had to do this so many times, it’s crazy,” he said. “That’s why we’re pleading with these parents.”
Former President Barack Obama made a surprise trip to Texas on Sunday for a very special cause.
The 44th POTUS joined his former White House staffers Brian Wallach and Sandra Abrevaya for an Obama Foundation alumni event celebrating the SXSW premiere of their new documentary, No Ordinary Campaign, at Arlyn Studios in Austin.
Calling the moment a “privilege,” Wallach told PEOPLE, “We first learned how to turn hope into action on his 2008 campaign. So to hear from him tonight, talking about how we are living out that legacy, was incredible.”
On the day they brought their second child home from the hospital in 2017, Wallach and Abrevaya experienced another life-changing event when Wallach, then 37, was diagnosed with ALS and given six months to live
After throwing himself back into his work as a lawyer in Chicago, he decided he was going to change the future of the disease.
The tireless work of Wallach and Abrevaya, both 42, to help pass the 2021 Accelerating Access to Critical Therapies for ALS Act — which aims to foster drug development and access and provide five years of monumental research funding — is documented in No Ordinary Campaign.
“I just want to say how incredibly proud and inspired I am by Brian and Sandra and their entire family and their entire network of friends who have taken an incredibly challenging moment and are driving change,” Obama said in his remarks at Sunday night’s event. “I think as long as I know that there are folks out here, like the two of you, and so many of you in the audience, that I continue to be hopeful about the country. And I feel hopeful about the world.”
Obama appears in the documentary, speaking to Wallach’s can-do attitude and ribbing the couple for not naming one of their two young daughters for him. The pair met while working on the former president’s 2008 campaign.
Wallach and Abrevaya traveled to Austin with loved ones and supporters to celebrate the film’s release at the Rollins Theatre over the weekend, joining executive producer Katie Couric (Everybody Loves Raymond creator Phil Rosenthal also produced), their friend and director Christopher Burke and singer Rachel Platten, who met the couple by chance on a recent vacation and gave them the rights to her hit “Fight Song” for the film.
The film premiered at the Chicago International Film Festival in 2022, where it won the Audience Award for best documentary, and recently screened at the 2023 Santa Barbara International Film Festival in California.
For more about Wallach and Abrevaya’s inspiring work, visit their nonprofit iamals.org. If you or someone you know are looking for help navigating care for ALS or another neurodegenerative disease, check out their other venture, Synapticure, which connects patients to providers.