Patterico's Pontifications


Joe Horn Has a Problem … Maybe (Updated)

Filed under: Crime,Immigration — DRJ @ 7:03 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

UPDATE: The Houston Chronicle has updated its article to provide more information:

“On Friday, [Police Capt. A.H. “Bud”] Corbett described the shooting scenario that had been pieced together so far. According to a transcript of Horn’s 911 call, at 2 p.m., he became concerned that his next- door neighbor’s home was being burglarized after hearing some glass break. The dispatcher repeatedly urges Horn to stay in his house but Horn states that he doesn’t feel it’s right to let the burglars get away.

“Well, here it goes, buddy,” Horn tells the dispatcher. “You hear the shotgun clicking and I’m going.” The dispatcher replies: “Don’t go outside.” Then the tape records Horn warning someone: “Move and you’re dead!” Two quick shots can be heard, followed by a pause and then a third shot.

Corbett said the plainclothes detective, whose name has not been released, had parked in front of Horn’s house in response to the 911 call. He saw the men between Horn’s house and his neighbor’s before they crossed into Horn’s front yard. Corbett believes neither Horn nor the men knew a police officer was present.

“It was over within seconds. The detective never had time to say anything before the shots were fired,” Corbett said. “At first, the officer was assessing the situation. Then he was worried Horn might mistake him for the ‘wheel man’ (get-away driver). He ducked at one point.”

When Horn confronted the suspects in his yard, he raised his shotgun to his shoulder, Corbett said. However the men ignored his order to freeze. Corbett said one man ran toward Horn, but had angled away from him toward the street when he was shot in the back just before reaching the curb.

“The detective confirmed that this suspect was actually closer to Horn after he initiated his run than at the time when first confronted,” said Corbett. “Horn said he felt in jeopardy.”

The wounded man crossed the street, collapsed and died, authorities said. At the same time, the other man had turned and ran away from Horn. Horn swung his shotgun around after shooting the first man and fired at the second one after he entered the neighbor’s yard, investigators said. He was hit in the back but continued running until collapsing a few hundred yards down the street, Corbett said.

According to a final ruling, Ortiz died of shotgun wounds to his neck and torso, said Ellie Wallace, an investigator at the Harris County Medical Examiner’s Office. The report said that Torres died of shotgun wounds to his torso and upper left extremity. Wallace could not confirm whether the men were shot in the back, saying the autopsy report only indicated they were shot in the torso.

Neither suspect was armed, but one had a “center punch,” a 6-inch pointed metal tool, in his pocket that might be used as a weapon, authorities said. Also, they were carrying a sack filled with more than $2,000 in cash and assorted jewelry believed taken in the burglary, police said.”

Police speculate there may have been a third person in a car, since no vehicle was located that belonged to Ortiz and Torres.

In many respects, the undercover officer helps Horn’s case.

H/T Ernest.


The Houston Chronicle reports that Joe Horn shot both burglary suspects in the back and the shooting was witnessed by a Pasadena undercover officer:

Two men suspected of burglarizing a neighbor’s home were shot in the back by Pasadena homeowner Joe Horn after the suspects ventured into his front yard, Pasadena police disclosed Friday.

Also, for the first time, investigators revealed the Nov. 14 shooting was witnessed by a plainclothes Pasadena detective, who had pulled up in an unmarked car seconds before Horn fired three shots from his 12-guage shotgun.

The detective’s name was not released as the new details emerged about the controversial shootings that have outraged minority activists but also brought an outpouring of support from others.

“We have now documented a summary of what we think happened. We will turn it over to the district attorney in a couple of weeks after we finish our extensive quality control review,” said Pasadena Police Department Captain A.H. “Bud” Corbett. The Harris County district attorney will then present the case to a grand jury to determine if any charges should be filed against Horn.”

I think Joe Horn’s outlook to avoid a grand jury indictment has taken a dramatic turn for the worse.

Earlier posts are here, here, and here.


Excuse me …. while …. I try … to …….. stop laughing….. long enough to ….. finish…… this ………. post.

Filed under: General — WLS @ 4:56 pm

Posted by WLS:

Academy Award-winning actor Sean Penn endorsed Dennis Kucinich for president in San Francisco Friday.

Penn made what had been billed as a “major political statement” at San Francisco State University

Andy Juniewicz, National Press Secretary and senior advisor to Kucinich told NBC11 that Penn made the endorsement at an open-to-the-public event sponsored by The San Francisco State College Democrats.

The event was paid for by Kucinich for President 2008.

Penn has donated $4,600 to John Edwards’ campaign and $2,300 to Kucinich during this cycle, per FEC campaign finance data, NBC’s Domenico Montanaro said.

Penn was set to deliver “a blistering indictment of political leaders and an impassioned endorsement of Presidential proportions,” according to a Kucinich press release.

[Stop it — you’re killing me.. hahahahahahahahahahahaha]

“Penn and Democratic Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich have been close friends for years, but the Kucinich campaign was not involved with Penn in preparing the remarks he plans to deliver today,” Juniewicz said.

“Sean Penn is a good friend, but he’s also a very intense, independent-minded person,” said the spokesman for the Kucinich campaign. “He’s going to say whatever he’s going to say.”

Penn, who is a Marin County resident, has become increasingly well known [?] for his support of liberal political and social causes.

He is also a longtime critic of the Bush administration.

In August Penn met with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez for two hours.

In June of 2005 Penn visited Iran acting as a journalist for the San Francisco Chronicle.

[What about his trip to Iraq before the war?]

After Hurricane Katrina, Penn traveled to New Orleans where he helped provide aid to victims.

Penn has starred in more than 40 movies.

He was awarded an Oscar for Best Actor for his performance in “Mystic River.”

Penn is slated to star in the Gus Van Sant movie “Milk,” the biography of the San Francisco supervisor Harvey Milk who, along with Mayor George Moscone, was shot and killed in November 1978 by another supervisor, Dan White.



Ok, I think I’m alright now.


The LAT’s Inconsistent Treatment of Stories Highlighting the Candidacy of HRC

Filed under: General — WLS @ 4:30 pm

Posted by WLS: 

A couple weeks ago Patterico took the Dog Trainer to task for its pratically hagiographic article on Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and her near-flawless performance as a candidate in this election cycle, while he noted that the author and editors buried all the critical passages about her to a portion of the story that ran after the jump to an inside page. 

This story today does not appear on the Front Page, and in the online table of contents it is listed under “Opinion.”  But it is written by Robin Abcarian, a Times Staff Writer.  How does that end up on an “opinion” page?

This article deals with the particularly newsworthy subject of Hillary’s problems in attracting the support of women much like herself — upper middle class, professional women who are “politically active Democrats, liberals, and many unabashed feminsts” according to the author. 

This article contains some shockingly harsh criticism of Hillary from well-known figures who have decided to back other candidates:

 In an essay in the November issue of the Atlantic Monthly, Caitlin Flanagan wrote that she was put off by Clinton’s “sanctimoniousness.” She wondered why “so many of the most liberal and educated women are ambivalent about Hillary?” Flanagan’s answer: By sticking with a husband who has mistreated vulnerable women — for the sake of her marriage, her child and her ambition — she has made herself complicit in his unsavory behavior, and diminished the very best parts of herself.

On the Huffington Post blog, Nora Ephron described “Hillary resisters” (and she is one) as women who disapprove of her tendency to triangulate, deplore her position on the Iraq war and “don’t trust her as far as you can spit.”

In the spring, University of Michigan communications studies professor Susan J. Douglas wrote an essay for the liberal journal In These Times called “Why Women Hate Hillary.” And in an interview with LA Weekly last May, Jane Fonda called Clinton “a ventriloquist for the patriarchy with a skirt and a vagina.”

My first reaction upon reading it online was to give the LAT some credit for running the article, and seeking out the harshly negative quotes. 

But when I looked at the online depiction of today’s Front Page, I didn’t see the story there, even though there is a Campaign 08 story about Romney’s speech. 

Romney’s speech was more akin to the “campaign event of the day” and not a lenghty piece that took some time to report like the HRC story.  

Can someone verify where in the LAT print edition this story appeared?  Was it on the OpEd pages of the Metro section?

 Update:  After refreshing the story a couple times and looking around the LAT site for a page number reference — which I still haven’t found — the article now appears in the “National Politics” section. 


Not Your Average Primate Line-Up

Filed under: General — DRJ @ 12:49 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

This Rutherford College, NC, article may be the most unusual story I’ve ever read:

“A woman tried to pet a customer’s monkey when it latched onto her face and scratched her. Brooke Ross was working at the Family Food Mart in Rutherford College, N.C., on Sunday when a man walked up to the counter with a monkey on his shoulder. It hopped down onto the counter and Ross, who said she thought the 18-inch-tall animal was cute, reached to pet him.

In the blink of an eye the monkey attacked, biting her cheek just below her right eye. “It bit the top of my eyelid and it just kind of latched onto my cheek,” she said.

She said the monkey’s owner helped her put a Band-Aid on her bleeding face, hastily said the animal was up-to-date on its shots and then left. He didn’t leave his name.

Customers said they were shocked by the incident. “It’s crazy, it really is, to keep stuff like that in your house,” one man said.”

You don’t often see monkeys in convenience stores where I live. In fact, you don’t ever see monkeys in convenience stores. Fortunately animal control officers were able to track the monkey down after Ross picked it out of a pet line-up (Yes, you read that right, and I have no idea why they even have photos of area pets):

“Burke County Animal Control officers spent several hours early Tuesday trying to track down the monkey. They showed Ross photographs of pets in the county and she was able to pick out the offender.

Animal Control confirmed that the monkey had been given all its required shots. It had not received a rabies shot, but officers told her they don’t think that’s a problem because the animal never really went outdoors.

Ross is taking a round of antibiotics after the attack and said she plans to stay away from monkeys from now on. “I really don’t like any kind of animal right now,” Ross said.”

Video is here. A photo of the monkey is on the video and at the original link.

I would really like to see that line-up. I wonder if they were all monkeys … and if they were wearing Santa suits.


Remembering Pearl Harbor

Filed under: War — DRJ @ 12:17 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Sixty-six years ago today:

“[Joe] Whitt spoke to a pilots group at Lunken Airport Thursday night and appeared at a memorial event in New Richmond on Sunday. He can talk for hours because every detail of the attack remains fresh in his mind.

He was a seaman first class station on the USS San Francisco when the Japanese planes came. He and his mates concurred that the country was headed for war with Japan, but they figured on meeting their enemy in battle in the Philippines, where the Americans, he thought, would “clobber them in a day or two.”

Instead, he was on the deck of the San Francisco, a cruiser that was docked and getting an overhaul, when the Japanese fighter planes attacked. He and all but five crewmates killed by machine gun fire were among the lucky ones because a construction crane kept the Japanese bombers from getting close enough for good shots.

“We put World War I helmets on our heads. The planes were so low you could almost hit them with a potato,” he said.

Armed with a rifle, he shot at the planes as they passed by. “I had a view of the whole operation in the harbor. Big billows of black smoke and sound of guns firing. I never did see a plane dive straight down but they would come in on a heavy slant. They would come in real fast and drop those bombs and then they would pull up and roll over on a loop. The ones that dropped the big shells came in higher up,” he said.

“I saw the Arizona as she blew up. It was just a tremendous explosion,” he said, referring to the battleship that sank in the harbor, taking 1,177 crew members to a watery grave.

He would spend another five years in the Navy, mostly as a machine gunner. Whitt fought in the south and north Pacific, including battles in the Philippines, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. “I’m one of the few men who heard the first and last shots of the war,” he said.”

Whitt knows Americans won’t remember Pearl Harbor the way he does but he hopes we remember the heroes: “The heroes were the men that we buried at sea. The thousands, and thousands killed in battle.”


Joe Horn Update x2

Filed under: Law — DRJ @ 6:45 am

[Guest post by DRJ]

UPDATED 12/7/2007: Related post here.

The Houston Chronicle reports new information about the Pasadena, Texas, case in which Joe Horn shot two men he believed had burglarized his neighbor’s house. The suspected burglar who was previously identified as Miguel DeJesus was apparently using an alias and his real name was Hernando Riascos Torres. Both men are being investigated as possible members of an area crime ring:

“Two burglary suspects shot by a Pasadena homeowner last month were illegal immigrants from Colombia, and one man had been deported nearly 10 years ago, authorities said Thursday. Authorities also said they are investigating whether Diego Ortiz, 30, and Hernando Riascos Torres, 48, were part of a crime ring linked to burglaries and the use of fake immigration documents.”

Torres had a criminal record and had been deported in 1999. Both men used aliases and had fake IDs:

“Pasadena Police Department Capt. A.H. “Bud” Corbett said Torres was deported to Colombia in 1999 after a 1994 cocaine-related conviction. He was on parole until 2017, Corbett said.

Police found a Puerto Rican identification card on Ortiz. He had two aliases. Torres had identification cards from Colombia, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. He had three aliases.”

The report also discussed Horn’s neighbors, who are apparently Vietnamese and who may have been targeted because they are immigrants:

“State and federal authorities are investigating whether the two men, who lived in southwest Houston, were involved in the crime ring, Corbett said. Police found almost $2,000 in cash in a white bag the men allegedly took from the home in the 7400 block of Timberline before Horn shot them.

Investigators also are trying to determine whether the men knew about the home or family before burglarizing it. “I don’t believe the victim was a random choice … but there’s no evidence of a relationship either,” between the homeowners and suspects, Corbett said.

Horn told the operator that he did not know his neighbors well. Neighbors said the family moved into the home next to Horn’s house about four months ago. “I can’t comment,” a woman at the home said over the phone Thursday night.

A source told police that Ortiz and Torres burglarized the home, in part, because the homeowners were immigrants. “They targeted foreign-born people,” Corbett said. “They felt they were easier victims.”

Little is known about the homeowners, who have Vietnamese surnames. Neighbors said they own a small business near their Village Grove East subdivision. Records filed with the Office of the Secretary of State of Texas show that the family owns a dry cleaning business on Fairmont Parkway.”

This almost sounds like a made-for-TV movie script. It also illustrates one of the problems caused by illegal immigration – how other immigrants and low-income people can be the targets of illegal immigrant-related crime.

Earlier posts are here and here.


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