DOJ to investigate entire Sanford PD

Published: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 @ 5:49 AM
Updated: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 @ 5:49 AM

The Trayvon Martin case is bringing more scrutiny on the Sanford Police Department. The Department of Justice will now investigate all cases handled by the police department, after receiving complaints from Sanford citizens.

It's been more than a month since 17-year-old Martin was killed and only a week since the Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney's Office and the FBI launched investigations into why George Zimmerman shot him. Now, the Department of Justice is launching another investigation into the entire Sanford Police Department.

"The citizens of Sanford will continue to have some idea that their concerns would be heard by an independent agency when they have issues with the Sanford Police Department," said Sanford City Manager Norton Bonaparte.

Bonaparte announced the new investigation Tuesday afternoon after receiving numerous complaints about the way officers handled other cases.

He said that so many people complained at Monday night's city commission meeting about Sanford officers, the city asked the Department of Justice to step in.

"I am now in the process of talking with the Department of Justice and instituting a mechanism whereby citizens that have concerns or complaints about the Sanford Police Department can have their concerns heard and investigated by an independent agency," said Bonaparte.

WFTV found out the investigations could pave the way for a long relationship with federal officials.

After complaints surfaced in Los Angeles and Pittsburgh, the Department of Justice found a pattern of civil rights abuse. Then, it completely took over the departments and entered into "consent decrees" to improve them. The Department of Justice took over the department in LA for eight years and in Pittsburgh for four.

"Only that we are having conversations with the Department of Justice in some of the things they have seen other cities do," said Bonaparte.

Sanford officials will not know what this will mean for its police force until the Department of Justice tells them what it found.

The Department of Justice has not announced a sweeping investigation yet.

What was supposed to be a peaceful walk-out by students at Martin's school in Miami turned into chaos, and it was all caught on video.

About 100 students can be seen on the video running into a Walgreens near the school. The walk-out was planned as a protest of Martin's death, but the group took it as an opportunity to cause trouble, knocking stuff off shelves. No one was arrested.

George Zimmerman claims he shot Martin in self-defense but now, some state lawmakers want to review Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law because of this case.

The law allows someone to use deadly force if their lives are threatened. Some question if Zimmerman's life really was in danger.

Democrats want the law re-examined, but Republicans say they want all the facts in this case to come out before moving forward.

Martin's parents used an appearance before a congressional panel to thank the people who helped them turn their son's death into a rallying cry against racial profiling.

Members of Congress accused the Sanford Police Department of not doing a real investigation.

"They have profiled so much in this case; they decided that they were already going to make the victim, the cause... and let someone walk away without even questioning," said Gregory Meeks, (D) New York.

During the trip to Washington, DC, Martin's mother told lawmakers that what happened to her son could happen to anyone.

Martin's family is making a move to trademark his name. WFTV discovered that new federal filings show the family has applied for trademarks for the phrases "I am Trayvon" and "Justice for Trayvon."

The family insists that it will not try to profit from Trayvon's name. They say they want to prevent other people from printing any merchandise.

Trailers and posters for a movie coming out this summer have been pulled out of Florida theaters in the wake of the teen's death.  (Watch the movie trailer here)

The movie "Neighborhood Watch" is a comedy starring Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, and Jonah Hill.

Twentieth Century Fox says the movie has no connection to the Trayvon Martin shooting and they stopped promotions out of respect.

Don’t forget safety while shopping on Black Friday, police say

Published: Thursday, November 23, 2017 @ 12:05 AM

Black Friday 2017 Deals

Holiday shopping mania can make it easy to forget some common-sense rules to keep you and your belongings safe. Police recommend these tips before hitting the stores on Black Friday:

1Remove valuables from view: After a successful shopping run, you should place and secure all holiday packages in your trunk, away from prying eyes. Thefts are crimes of opportunity, and thieves wait and watch those who park, so lock and secure all windows and doors.

2Plan your route: Park in well-lighted spots, which thieves tend to avoid. It takes only three minutes for a vehicle to be burglarized or stolen, safety experts say.

3Don’t leave vehicle idling: No matter how quick the trip into the store will take, always turn off the ignition, lock your doors, roll up the windows and take your keys.

4Report any suspicious activity: Call 911 if you see something fishy and be sure to give a good description of the suspicious subject.

5Follow all traffic rules: For instance, don’t block intersections or rights of way, and park only in marked spaces. If you create a parking space, you risk being towed.

(Photo by Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images)(Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images)
6Keep your eyes peeled: Watch for shoppers crossing streets and walking in parking lots. Look for cars backing in and out of parking spaces. Sunset Valley police want shoppers to remember that all incoming mall traffic has the right of way and should not stop — exiting traffic should always yield.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade 2017: What time, what channel, which balloons will be there?

Published: Wednesday, November 22, 2017 @ 11:38 PM

Police officers stand near the site where a large balloon of Olaf, from the animated film,
Police officers stand near the site where a large balloon of Olaf, from the animated film, "Frozen", is being inflated for the Thanksgiving Day parade in New York, Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017. Sand-filled sanitation trucks and police sharpshooters will mix with glittering floats and giant balloons at a Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade that comes in a year of terrible mass shootings and a deadly truck attack in lower Manhattan.(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade has signaled the start of the holiday season for nearly 100 years. It draws 3 million people in person in New York City, and more than 50 million on television. 

There are stars who sing and dance, marching bands and balloons. Big balloons.

This year’s version of the parade is set to go off Thursday in New York City with a cast of more than 8,000.

Here’s what you need to know about this year’s parade.

What time does it start?

9 a.m. ET. It is scheduled to last until noon.

What channel is it on?

The parade is broadcast on NBC.

How long is the parade route?

2.5 miles

What is the parade route?

The parade begins at 77th Street and Central Park West in Manhattan. It moves south on Central Park West, and at Columbus Circle, it turns east onto Central Park South. When the parade reaches 6th Avenue, it turns south on to 34th Street. At 34th Street it turns west to Macy's Herald Square and ends at 34th Street and Seventh Avenue.

When was the first Macy's Thanksgiving day parade?

The first parade was held on Christmas in 1924.

Which balloons will we see this year?

Angry Birds’ Red

Ice Age’s Scrat and his Acorn

Red Mighty Morphin Power Ranger

Sinclair’s Dino

Hello Kitty

Pillsbury the Doughboy

Ronald McDonald


SpongeBob SquarePants


The Elf on the Shelf

Charlie Brown

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Super Wings’ Jett

Paw Patrol’s Chase

The Grinch

Frozen’s Olaf

Novelty Balloons

Charlie, Kit & C.J. Holiday Elves

Harold the Policeman

Yellow Star


Harold the Baseball Player

Rex the Happy Dragon

Cloe the Clown

Christmas String of Lights

Candy Cane

Blue Ornament

Red and Gold Macy’s Star

What about the floats?

There will be 31 floats in the parade.

Who is performing?

Gwen Stefani

98 Degrees

Sara Evans

Andra Day



Dustin Lynch

Wyclef Jean

Goo Goo Dolls

Smokey Robinson

Kat Graham

The Radio City Rockettes

Olivia Holt

JoJo Siwa

Andy Grammer

Miss America Cara Mund

Leslie Odom Jr.

Padma Lakshmi

Tom Colicchio

Angelica Hale

Bebe Rexha

Lauren Alaina

Nicky Jam

Sabrina Carpenter

Patti LaBelle

Marching Bands

There are 12 marching bands in the parade. They are:

Nation Ford High School Band

West Harrison High School

NYPD Marching Band

U.S. Air Force

Colony High School Band

Ohio University Marching Band

Rockford High School Marching Band

Macy’s Great American Marching Band

Prairie View A&M Marching Storm

Rosemount High School Marching Band

Davis High School Marching Band

Trumbull High School

Parade History

According to the New York Tourist Commission, the inaugural Macy's Day Parade took place on Christmas 1924 and had an audience of 250,000 people. There were no giant balloons until 1927 when Felix the Cat showed up. The parade was first broadcast on radio in 1932.

The Balloons

The balloons are filled with 12,000 cubic feet of helium. They are inflated the day before Thanksgiving at the American Museum of National History from 3 p.m. -10 p.m.

Some numbers

  • On average, 300 bands a year apply for the 12 slots in the parade
  • Those handling the balloons, 30 to 100 of them for each balloon, are volunteers.
  • It  takes 15 minutes to deflate the balloon.



Mama June proves she kept her weight loss promise 7 months later

Published: Wednesday, November 22, 2017 @ 11:38 PM

[June  April 5, 2017] AJ Calloway interviews Honey Boo Boo and Mama  in New York City.  (Photo by D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra)
D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra
[June April 5, 2017] AJ Calloway interviews Honey Boo Boo and Mama in New York City. (Photo by D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra)(D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra)

Seven months after losing 300 pounds on “Mama June: From Not to Hot,” Mama June Shannon is here to prove she’s still keeping the weight off!

>> Read more trending news

The 38-year-old reality star was spotted out and about in Atlanta this week while Christmas shopping and was happy to show off her slim figure. Dressed in athletic wear leggings and a long-sleeved gray shirt, she was all smiles while proving she’s kept her weight loss promise.

“I can promise you I’m never going back to that size. I’m happy where I’m at,” Shannon told PEOPLE back in April after she underwent weight loss surgery and drastically changed her diet and exercise routine, going from 460 pounds to a size 4.

At the very beginning of her weight loss journey, she wanted to drop the pounds to make her ex Mike “Sugar Bear” Thompson jealous at his then-upcoming wedding to his new love. However, over time it became much more than that.

“My goal when I first started this weight loss journey was to make Sugar Bear kind of jealous,” she said. “But it’s no longer about revenge. Doing all the surgeries really took a toll on me -- not just physically, but emotionally. I feel like [I’m] becoming the person on the outside that I always felt like [I was] on the inside.”

When she made her big debut after shedding the weight, her daughter and “Toddlers & Tiaras” star Alana “Honey Boo Boo” Thompson, said, “She looks great. I’m really proud of her.”

While Shannon continues to drop jaws whenever she updates fans on how she’s been keeping up her weight loss, she barely turns heads back at home.

“It’s kind of crazy. A lot of people don’t recognize who I am until I talk,” she said. “It’s kind of like I’m in my own disguise. Normally when I walk through the streets, everybody notices me, and now it’s like nobody [does].”

However, she may not slip under the radar for much longer, because she’s headed back to your television screens in January for “Mama June: From Not to Hot” Season 2:

#Repost @wetv (@get_repost) ・・・ #MamaJune is doing what?!? Season 2 of #FromNotToHot premieres this January!

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Joe Barton apologizes for graphic photo circulating online

Published: Wednesday, November 22, 2017 @ 11:04 PM

Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) questions witnesses during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing.  (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) questions witnesses during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, R-Ennis, issued an apology Wednesday after a sexually explicit photo of him made the rounds on social media.

>> Read more trending news

Barton reportedly sent the photo to a woman he was involved with after he and his now ex-wife had separated.

“While separated from my second wife, prior to the divorce, I had sexual relationships with other mature adult women,” he said, according to The Texas Tribune. “Each was consensual. Those relationships have ended. I am sorry I did not use better judgment during those days. I am sorry that I let my constituents down.”

Barton, who recently announced he would run for re-election in 2018, said through a spokeswoman that he has no plans of resigning.