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Published: Thursday, October 05, 2017 @ 11:33 PM
— A federal judge in Augusta, Georgia, on Thursday denied Reality Winner’s request to be released from jail pending her March 19 trial in the National Security Agency leak investigation.
Winner, 25, the first accused leaker to be prosecuted by the Trump administration, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of leaking an NSA report about Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election to The Intercept, an online news publication.
In his eight-page order, U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Epps said it’s possible the former Air Force linguist could flee the country and harm national security if she were freed. He said her own writings show she hates the United States and has plotted against the government, adding she admires former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
“By her own words and actions, defendant has painted a disturbing self-portrait of an American with years of national service and access to classified information who hates the United States and desires to damage national security on the same scale as Julian Assange and Edward Snowden,” Epps wrote. “The nature and seriousness of the danger she poses to our nation is high.”
Epps also appeared to tip his hand when he wrote the evidence against Winner in the case is “strong.”
“During her initial interview with law enforcement, defendant admitted she leaked classified information to a news outlet,” Epps wrote. “Defendant also made damning admissions regarding the same in recorded jail phone conversations with her mother and sister. The circumstantial evidence corroborates defendant’s admissions.”
Last month, Winner’s attorneys argued she should be released from jail pending her trial because new information had surfaced that weakens the government’s case for keeping her behind bars. They said in their court filing that her detention “is manifestly unjust, contrary to law, and not in accordance with the presumption of liberty.”
>> RELATED: Accused NSA leaker Reality Winner seeks release from jail
“We’re obviously disappointed by the ruling,” Titus Nichols, one of Winner’s attorneys, said. “However, this will not stop us from continuing to fight for Reality as we move forward.”
Winner’s parents objected to the judge’s ruling in statements they issued through the Stand With Reality support group late Thursday evening.
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 4:42 PM
— Charles Lazarus, who founded what would become Toys R Us in 1948, has died, company officials confirmed Thursday. He was 94.
The news came just days after officials with the toy store chain announced it would be closing its U.S. stores.
“There have been many sad moments for Toys R Us in recent weeks, and none more heartbreaking than today’s news about the passing of our beloved founder, Charles Lazarus,” Toys R Us officials wrote Thursday in a tweet. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Charles’ family and loved ones.”
There have been many sad moments for Toys"R"Us in recent weeks, and none more heartbreaking than today's news about the passing of our beloved founder, Charles Lazarus. Our thoughts and prayers are with Charles' family and loved ones.— ToysRUs (@ToysRUs) March 22, 2018
Michael Goldstein, a friend of Lazarus’ who formerly served as chairman of Toys R Us, told Bloomberg News that Lazarus died Thursday in Manhattan.
"He was the father of the toy business," Goldstein told CNN Money. "He knew the toys and loved the toys and loved the kids who would shop in the stores. His face lit up when he watched kids playing with toys."
In a 1986 article, The Atlantic magazine credited Lazarus as “the person most responsible for loosening Santa’s grip” on the toy industry, expanding sales from a holiday-only to a year-round business.
Lazarus served as a cryptographer during World War II and took over his family’s bicycle shop in Washington D.C. after he returned to the U.S. in 1923, according to The Atlantic. He started to sell baby furniture, The Atlantic reported, but he noticed that he rarely got return customers because of the sturdiness of his stock.
"Toys are a great kind of thing to sell, because they don't last that long," he told the magazine in 1986.
Lazarus served as head of Toys R Us through the company’s sale in 1966 to Interstate Department Stores Inc., and through Interstate’s bankruptcy in 1974, according to Bloomberg.
Toys R Us dominated the toy store business in the 1980s and early '90s, when it was one of the first of the category killers -- big stores that are so totally devoted to one thing and have such impressive selection that they drive smaller competitors out of business. Lazarus, who remained at the helm until 1994, stacked the merchandise high to give shoppers the feeling it had an infinite number of toys.
He stepped down as chairman of the company in 1998, Bloomberg reported.
Officials with Toys R Us announced last week that the company planned to close or sell its 735 stores nationwide, including its Babies R Us stores. The superstore chain could no longer bear the weight of its heavy debt load and relentless trends that hurt its business, namely competition from the likes of Amazon, discounters like Walmart, and mobile games.
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 6:37 PM
Washington — National Security Adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster is resigning from the Trump administration and will be replaced by former U.S. ambassador John Bolton, according to a tweet Thursday afternoon from President Donald Trump.
>> Read more trending news/ Who is H.R. McMaster, Trump's national security advisor/
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 9:48 AM
BOSTON — Shoppers looking for a bargain lined up at Toys R Us stores across the country to cash in on the liquidation sale that was expected to begin Thursday.
However, the sales have been postponed, according to multiple reports.
WYFF reported that a sign on the Greenville location stated that the liquidation sale was postponed until further notice.
The sales are now expected to start Friday, CNN Money reported.
But no matter when the sales start, experts told CNN Money that bargain hunters should be ready to go as soon as the sales begin.
Toys R Us announced last week it was closing or selling all of its stores in the United States, but shoppers need to act fast.
MORE: Toys R Us store locator
Industry experts say shelves will clear out quickly and the sale may only last about 30 days.
Inventory on the most popular toys are already slim, and whatever is left will be the first to go.
People with Toys R Us gift cards and Endless Earnings Gift Cards should use those first.
Toys R Us will not accept them after April 20.
Starting Thursday, stores will not be accepting coupons or rewards.
If you have a return, Toys R Us will accept items for the next 30 days, but anything purchased during the liquidation sale is final and cannot be returned.
Amazon, one of Toys R Us’ most fierce competitors, is apparently considering buying up some of the empty store fronts once Toys R Us officially closes.
The Seattle-based company recently bought Whole Foods and opened its own line of bookstores and convenience stores.
Toys R Us is closing 735 locations, and will lay off about 31,000 employees.
Before you shop, check your location. Some local stores were part of the initial closing announcement and have been liquidating for weeks.
Published: Thursday, March 22, 2018 @ 2:34 PM
President Donald Trump said on Thursday that he will be replacing his National Security Adviser, General H.R. McMaster, replacing him with former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton, in another big shake up on the White House staff.
Making the announcement on Twitter, the President said McMaster had “done an outstanding job,” though there had been reports for months that Mr. Trump was unhappy with the Army General, who is reportedly expected now to retire from the military.