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Ex-Secret Service agent 'sexted' teens on White House grounds, sentenced to 20 years

Published: Friday, May 19, 2017 @ 12:43 PM

Lee Robert Moore (Photo provided by the Delaware Department of Justice)
Lee Robert Moore (Photo provided by the Delaware Department of Justice)

former U.S. Secret Service agent was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Thursday after admitting he sent sexually-charged emails and nude photos of himself to a South Florida teen and other young girls from his post at the White House.

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Saying Lee Robert Moore “dishonors every man and woman who has ever worn the uniform,” a federal prosecutor pushed for a life sentence in prison for the former agent and U.S. Marine, who was stripped of his high-security clearance shortly after he was arrested in late 2015 at his home in Church Hill, Maryland.

While making it clear that a life sentence would be too harsh, U.S. District Judge Daniel Hurley made it equally clear that the 15-year sentence Moore sought wasn’t sufficient to protect teens from those who prey on them on the Internet.

Moore, 38, never made physical contact with the three teens to whom he sent lewd messages while working at the White House. But, Hurley said, he was disturbed that Moore contacted his victims through a phone app that also showed him their locations. Moore also told the girls that he dreamed of meeting them for sex, sent them nude photos of himself and enticed them to send him explicit photos of themselves.

“I have great concerns about the recruitment theme (of the messages),” Hurley said. “I’m not satisfied that it was just discussion.”

Moore’s arrest and conviction is yet another black eye for the elite law enforcement agency that has been riddled with scandals. Moore was working for the agency in the Obama Administration when agents were disciplined for drinking and using prostitutes while on assignment. A year before Moore’s arrest, a security contractor with a criminal record was allowed to get on an elevator with Obama and an Iraq war veteran jumped the White House fence and made it into the East Room before he was tackled.

In emails and texts to his victims, Moore identified himself as a law enforcement agent, without saying where he worked. He told them he was bored with his job, checking identification and patrolling the White House grounds on a bicycle.

In a letter to Hurley, Moore’s wife said her husband was disappointed to be transferred back to the White House. He loved his job as a firearms instructor at the Secret Service training academy, she said.

However, Moore didn’t blame job dissatisfaction for his behavior. Instead, he said, after his two children were born, his wife was consumed with raising them. “I got lonely,” he said. “I was selfish.”

He began using the Internet for sexual gratification. “I turned to the Internet because it seemed to be a softer and safer betrayal to (my wife),” he said, choking back tears. “I was wrong.”

Further, he said, he discovered he had a dark side he didn’t know existed: He liked young girls. “I became a pervert,” he said as his wife, parents and other relatives tearfully looked on.

Ordering Moore to get psychological treatment and register as a sex offender when he is released from prison, Hurley said he didn’t believe the former officer’s actions were driven by a need for companionship. “Someone doesn’t do that just because they get lonely,” he said.

The case against Moore began when a detective with the Delaware State Police, posing as a 14-year-old girl, began exchanging emails with the agent. Eventually, law enforcement found he had been sending lewd messages to a Coconut Creek, Florida, teen for nearly two years and two other teens in Texas and Missouri. The cases filed against him in Florida and Delaware were consolidated.

In March, Moore pleaded guilty to two charges, one of enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity and another of sending obscene material to a person under the age of 16.

Hurley also acknowledged that as a former police officer and convicted child predator, Moore won’t have an easy life in prison. For his protection, he has been segregated from the general population while in the Palm Beach County Jail.

Hurley said he was hopeful federal prison officials would “take into consideration your employment and consider your safety.”

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LIVE UPDATES: Barbara Bush funeral in Houston

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 10:20 AM
Updated: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 11:52 AM

Barbara Bush Through The Years

Approximately 1,500 guests are expected to attend former first lady Barbara Bush's funeral in Houston Saturday.

Barbara Bush, the wife of the nation’s 41st president and mother of the nation’s 43rd, died Tuesday at her Houston home. She was 92.

About 2,500 mourners paid their respect at a public viewing held Friday in Houston, The Associated Press reported.

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The service will take place at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston. Jeb Bush will deliver a eulogy for his mother. Longtime friend Susan Baker and historian Jon Meacham will also speak during the 90-minute service and musical selections will be performed, The AP reported. A procession will follow, with burial at the Bush Library at Texas A&M University. The procession will go through Houston’s Memorial Park, which was beloved by the Bushes. Barbara Bush will be buried next to her daughter, Robin, who was 3 years old when she died of leukemia in 1953, The AP reported.

Notable guests will include first lady Melania Trump, former President Bill Clinton, former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama, The AP reported.

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E. coli outbreak: CDC warns to ‘avoid all types of romaine lettuce’

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 5:42 PM

E. Coli Outbreak: 'Avoid All Types Of Lettuce' CDC Warns

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded its warning to include all types of romaine lettuce. The warning now includes whole heads and hearts of romaine lettuce, in addition to chopped romaine and salads and salad mixes containing romaine.

The CDC also asks consumers to “not buy or eat romaine lettuce at a grocery store or restaurant unless you can confirm it is not from the Yuma, Arizona, growing region.”

Additionally, the CDC suggests that consumers throw away any romaine lettuce in the home, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.

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At least 31 people have been hospitalized, including three who developed a type of kidney failure, according to the CDC.

The affected states include

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia
  • Washington

No deaths related to the outbreak have been reported.

The CDC has not yet identified the grower or a common brand, and is urging people not to eat chopped lettuce from the Yuma area.

Symptoms of an E. coli infection vary, but often include severe stomach cramps and diarrhea, which is often bloody. Most people get better in five to seven days. Infections can be mild, but can also be severe and even life-threatening.

If you think you have E. coli, the CDC says to talk to your health care provider or public health department and write down what you ate in the week before you got sick.

People started reporting illnesses that are part of the outbreak between March 22 and March 31.

DNA fingerprinting is being used to identify illnesses that are part of the same outbreak. Some people might not be included in the CDC’s case count if officials weren’t able to get bacteria strains needed for DNA fingerprinting to link them to the outbreak.

To reduce your risk of an E. coli infection, you can:

  • Wash your hands. Wash hands after using the restroom or changing diapers, before and after preparing or eating food and after contact with animals.
  • Cook meats thoroughly to kill harmful germs.
  • Thoroughly wash hands, counters, cutting boards and utensils after they touch raw meat.
  • Wash fruits and vegetables before eating.
  • Avoid raw milk, other unpasteurized dairy products and unpasteurized juices.
  • Don’t prepare food or drink for others when you are sick.

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Boy's wallet lost behind lockers at pool found 46 years later

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 6:17 PM

Wallet Lost Behind Lockers Found 46 Years Later

A wallet lost in 1972 has been found by a work crew in Wenatchee who is updating part of the Wentachee, Washington, pool facility.

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Wenatchee World says the wallet, owned by Harry LaRue, contains some family pictures, and a Boy Scout Card. The World says it estimates that LaRue was about 10 when he lost the wallet and that he lived in East Wenatchee.

The wallet was found behind the boys’ lockers at the city pool by a city crew who was updating the changing room.

A reporter from the World tried to find LaRue, but has been unable to.

After seeing the World's Facebook post, someone who knows a man by the same name said she contacted him and he was calling the city, who has the wallet. 

KIRO 7 is asking the Wenatchee World to verify if the man is the same person who lost the wallet years ago.

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Convicted murderer leaves courthouse before verdict is read

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 11:49 PM

Convicted Murderer Leaves Courthouse Before Being Sentenced

A man convicted of murder Friday left a courthouse in Atlanta, before the verdict could be read.

Verlaine Laguerre, 26, was found guilty in the killing of Matthew Hardeman, who was 19 at the time of his death.

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After a long legal battle, Laguerre and Prentice Baker were convicted of Hardeman’s murder Friday and sentenced to life in prison, plus five years. But Laguerre didn't show up to hear the verdict.

“I was just fearful. Just fearful. I just said, ‘Lord have mercy,’” Gloria Hardeman said.

She said that she still has faith that the system will bring complete justice for her and her family. 

“I hope the system continues to work to capture him, that he won’t do no harm to himself or nobody else,” Hardeman said.

The Fulton County District Attorney’s Office said Laguerre's whereabouts are unknown at this time and he is considered a fugitive. 

After so many years of waiting, Hardeman said she will have to wait a little longer to see the man who killed her son behind bars where he belongs. 

“It’s been a long time. Praying and crying. Praying and crying, but like I say, we held on,” Hardeman said.

On Oct. 15, 2011, Hardeman and Laguerre got into a physical fistfight outside Hardeman’s Lakewood Terrace home in southeast Atlanta.

Police said it all started because of "dirty looks" between the two. At the end of the fist fight, Laguerre took off, telling Hardeman he was coming back with his "red eye," referring to his gun.

Shortly after the fight, Laguerre came back with his accomplice, Prentice Baker. When Hardeman appeared, Baker opened fire, hitting him multiple times. Laguerre also shot Hardeman with an assault rifle. Police say a third man, who hasn't been identified yet, also fired shots. In total, Hardeman was shot 50 times. His family found him dead in the front yard of their home.

“He wasn’t just but 19, and he hadn’t begun to start his life, and it’s hurting me dearly," Gloria Hardeman said Friday night. 

Matthew Hardeman made a name for himself as a high school football star at Avondale High School in DeKalb County. He then went to Cal State Fullerton on a football scholarship.

After injuring his knee, he was forced to return home to Georgia. At the time of his death, he was taking criminal justice classes at Georgia State University and preparing to play on the football team the next year.

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