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Man in Custody After Stabbings and Burn Attacks in Astoria, Queens

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Man in Custody After Stabbings and Burn Attacks in Astoria, Queens

A 23-year-old man slashed a woman in the face on Sunday morning in Queens, the police said, before fatally stabbing a shopkeeper and setting another man on fire several hours later at a nearby liquor store, leading to a wild manhunt that ended with officers shooting the suspect as he threw a chemical at them.

The man, James Patrick Dillon, refused to drop a knife and was spewing accelerant from a Corona bottle at a police lieutenant and an inspector when they shot him several times around 5:40 p.m. in his backyard in the Astoria neighborhood, the police said. He was taken to a nearby hospital with gunshot wounds to his leg; the lieutenant and inspector, who sustained chemical burns from the accelerant, were taken to a different hospital in stable condition.

The attacks, and the subsequent manhunt, turned a peaceful stretch of businesses and brick homes into a scene of panic and confusion. Officers snaked through backyards and alleyways with their hands on their guns as helicopters circled overhead and residents ducked for cover amid gunfire.

Mr. Dillon is accused of killing George Patouhas, 55, the owner of the liquor store, who was known for his friendly greetings and his lenient payment plans. Despite his easy manner, he was often harassed by an aggressive group of men, including Mr. Dillon, some customers said.

The police said Mr. Dillon had been treated for psychological problems in the past, and his family reported that he had not been taking his medication recently. He started arguing in the liquor store with a 61-year-old man police officials said might have been homeless, and Mr. Patouhas intervened. After stabbing Mr. Patouhas, he stepped outside and threw an accelerant into the store, setting Mr. Patouhas and the other man on fire.

For several hours, the neighborhood’s tree-lined streets and small coffee shops and delis were under lockdown as investigators searched grassy patches for evidence and scoured the neighborhood for him. Then, around 5:11 p.m., Mr. Dillon broke into a nearby apartment on 42nd Street and fled down a fire escape, prompting 911 calls, the authorities said.

Half an hour later, eight to 10 officers caught sight of Mr. Dillon and ran toward 36th Street, where he lived.

As they closed in on his apartment, near the intersection with Astoria Boulevard, around five shots were fired. Officers rushed at the apartment and ordered pedestrians and journalists to keep back.

Two residents scampered into their second-floor apartment and took cover as shots rang out, crying, “What’s happening? What’s happening?”

Investigators said they recovered a green knife and the Corona bottle.

Cristina Squicciarini, 52, who has lived in the neighborhood for decades and heard the officers firing, said, “You don’t think that something would happen on the block you’ve walked on for 35 years.”

The lieutenant and inspector who were burned are assigned to the Critical Response Command, a unit trained to respond to terrorist attacks.

Mr. Dillon has seven prior arrests, most recently on a charge of menacing in 2013 and a marijuana charge in 2009, a law enforcement official said. The other five arrests came when he was a juvenile.

The violence began with a knife attack of the kind that has sown fear in subways and on city streets this year, when Mr. Dillon slashed a 39-year-old neighbor in the head and face near 25-69 36th Street around 11:30 a.m. He fled the scene, and the woman was taken to a hospital in stable condition.

Around 3 p.m., he began another attack at a liquor store customers said he frequented. Mr. Patouhas was pronounced dead at Mount Sinai Hospital of Queens, and the 61-year-old man was taken to NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, where he was in stable condition.

Frank O’Connor, a longtime customer of the liquor store, said of Mr. Patouhas: “He was such a nice guy, and he would give all these guys favors. They’d say, ‘Let me get a pint of vodka, and I’ll pay you tomorrow.’”

He had helped his father, also called George, sell daisies and roses from a flower stand in a Times Square subway station before striking out on his own and opening the liquor store on Astoria Boulevard decades ago, said a neighbor, Markella Katos, 77.

“He would always stop to say, ‘Good morning, Markella. How are you?’” said Ms. Katos, who also recalled how he would help her fix her heat or lights. “He was a wonderful person and a good neighbor.”

Mr. Patouhas, whose family had roots in Greece, lived with his wife and a young daughter, as well as his wife’s relatives, Ms. Katos said.

In a New York Times article, he once described having to close the flower shop early because of a water main break; in a later article, his father described fending off people who wanted to use his flower pots as toilets.

Mr. Patouhas’s liquor shop, too, put him in contact with rowdy men, some of whom badgered him for free merchandise. Mr. O’Connor said Mr. Dillon was one of them, describing him as “an alcoholic and a druggie” who was known as Fox.

Mr. O’Connor said that on Saturday night Mr. Patouhas “told me these guys bother him.”

Entrepreneur, contributor, writer, and editor of Sostre News. With a powerful new bi-lingual speaking generation by his side, Sostre News is becoming the preferred site for the latest in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Culture, Tech, Breaking and World News.

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Trump Defends Brett Kavanaugh After Sexual Misconduct Allegations Resurface

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Trump Defends Brett Kavanaugh After Sexual Misconduct Allegations Resurface

A new book by two New York Times reporters says there was more to an allegation of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh than the Senate hearing uncovered.

President Donald Trump leapt to the defense of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh Sunday after allegations of sexual misconduct that had once threatened to torpedo his nomination to the bench resurfaced.

“He is an innocent man who has been treated HORRIBLY,” Trump said on Twitter, referring to the accusations as “lies.” The president also accused critics of attempting to influence Kavanaugh’s opinions and suggested that Kavanaugh “start suing people for liable, or the Justice Department should come to his rescue.” (Trump apparently meant “libel,” and later re-issued the tweet with the correct spelling of the word.)

Kavanaugh was nominated by Trump after the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy, a swing vote on the court. He was sworn in last October after a confirmation process that focused on the allegations — and the protests, controversy and high drama of the Senate hearing that followed.

Trump appeared to be reacting to an opinion-section article written by two New York Times reporters, published late Saturday, whose book on the Kavanaugh nomination will be published this week. In the book, which was summarized in Saturday’s article, the authors wrote that they had found new corroboration for accusations that Kavanaugh exposed himself to Deborah Ramirez, a classmate at Yale.

The book, written by Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, also uncovered a new accusation. Citing two officials, the reporters said that a former Yale classmate told senators and the FBI about a different episode of alleged sexual misconduct.

NBC News has not verified the reporting released Sunday.

Kavanaugh has strongly denied the allegation by Ramirez as well as accusations by Christine Blasey Ford that he sexually assaulted her when the two were in high school.

“During his Senate testimony, Mr. Kavanaugh said that if the incident Ms. Ramirez described had occurred, it would have been ‘the talk of campus’,” the reporters wrote in the New York Times article. “Our reporting suggests that it was.”

Kavanaugh told the Senate Judiciary Committee under oath that the first time he heard of Ramirez’s allegation was in a Sept. 23 article in The New Yorker.

But according to text messages obtained last year by NBC News, in the days leading up to Ramirez’ public allegation Kavanaugh and his team were communicating behind the scenes with friends to refute the claim.

The FBI opened an expanded background investigation into Kavanaugh after pressure from Democrats in Congress initially delayed his confirmation process.

But dozens of people with potential information into the allegations against him were not contacted, according to multiple sources that include friends of both the nominee and his accusers.

Several members of the Senate Judiciary Commitee on Sunday spoke out about the new reporting, including Kamala Harris, D-Calif., who called for Kavanaugh to be impeached.

“I sat through those hearings,” Harris, a Democratic presidential candidate, tweeted. “Brett Kavanaugh lied to the U.S. Senate and most importantly to the American people. He was put on the Court through a sham process and his place on the Court is an insult to the pursuit of truth and justice. He must be impeached.”

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., called Kavanaugh’s confirmation process a “sham.”

“I strongly opposed him based on his views on executive power, which will continue to haunt our country, as well as how he behaved, including the allegations that we are hearing more about today,” Klobuchar, also a presidential candidate, told ABC’s “This Week.” “My concern here is that the process was a sham. I don’t think you can look at impeachment hearings without getting the documents. The House would have to get the documents. And the attorney general is shielding documents.”

“If you recall, we were given this moment just a few days every other hour to look at the documents related to other allegations that have been called in on the FBI tip line,” she continued, adding, “I think the whole thing was a sham and that those documents need to be turned over, as well as the documents that the White House hid from his time in the White House Counsel’s Office. All of that needs to come forward to even look at a proceeding like that.”

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, told “This Week” that the new claims amounted to “an amazing level of reporting trying to just really dig up any dirt they can on the guy” adding the “far left” was “trying to smear” Kavanaugh.

“And you know what, I bet you the next Democratic debate, they’ll all be saying impeach Kavanaugh, impeach Trump,” Cruz said. “There’s nobody they don’t want to impeach. And at some point, they just have to let the anger go and recognize that the democratic process actually moves on. And I think it’s time for them to do that.”

Last October, Trump offered Kavanaugh and his family an unusual apology after attending his ceremonial swearing-in.

“On behalf of our nation, I want to apologize to Brett and the entire Kavanaugh family for the terrible pain and suffering you have been forced to endure,” he said at the time.

Almost a year on, Kavanaugh’s tenure has been largely untroubled by the controversy. But the resurfacing of the allegations led to calls for renewed scrutiny against the judge, seemingly drawing Trump’s ire.

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Trump Makes Political Ploy of Cruelty to Separated Immigrant Kids

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Trump Makes Political Ploy of Cruelty to Separated Immigrant Kids

Rep. Ben Ray Luján talks with Rachel Maddow about how the Trump administration continues to separate immigrant children from their families and subjecting them to appalling conditions both as political leverage against Democrats and as a political show for his base.

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“Human Trafficking The Silent epidemic”

Atrocities rob people of all walks of life of their civil liberties and personal freedoms.

billions of people are sold in to human trafficking, their identities blotted out and altered.

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“The Silent Epidemic”

                                                                                                                                                                                          Atrocities rob people of all walks of life of their civil liberties and personal freedoms.

billions of people are sold in to human trafficking, their identities blotted out and altered. Brainwashed

they are oppressed by their attackers .this problem will not  go away, we must

face it head on attack the problem at its source. this heinous crime exposes our most sensitive

vulnerabilities, families are broken left with out closure. driven by desperation they seek  help from

law enforcement and private investigators. this epidemic affects men, women, and children.

leaving a painful wound , that affects every aspect of their lives.

this  gaping wound is filled with pain, and emptiness. their eternal vision is

distorted by mistrust, anger, worry, anxiety. a deep spiritual unrest that permeates the

the very core of who they are. their self image, and  eternal perception of self is warped

and twisted. their spirits are broken, they are hardened, and apathetic.

the nature of this crime is cold and calculated. deception skews the victims concept of love.

Recovery numbers are hundreds of children per year typically the recovery rate is less then

1% of the actual trafficked population. this nightmare has no boundaries. it robs many nations of

its youth. damaging the  structure of the family keeping it divided and dsyfunctional  the loss of

the structure of the family negatively impacts the world. causing our society  to lack  sensitivity

care, and consideration  desensitized by the depravity of this enormous problem, innocence, awe

and wonder is replaced with speculation,indifference,apathy  no one wants to take responsibility,

no one wants involvement. this erodes love. the capacity to give love and  to receive love is marred by anger mistrust a painful emotional experience that compounds the problem affecting every one

that is suffering from the ill effects of despondency.

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