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A mistrial is declared in engineers’ Flint water trial : NPR

The Flint water plant tower is seen on Jan. 6, 2022, in Flint, Mich. A judge declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors said they couldn’t reach a verdict in a dispute over whether two engineering firms should bear some responsibility for Flint’s lead-contaminated water.

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The Flint water plant tower is seen on Jan. 6, 2022, in Flint, Mich. A judge declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors said they couldn’t reach a verdict in a dispute over whether two engineering firms should bear some responsibility for Flint’s lead-contaminated water.

Carlos Osorio/AP

DETROIT — A judge declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors said they couldn’t reach a verdict in a dispute over whether two engineering firms should bear some responsibility for Flint’s lead-contaminated water.

Veolia North America and Lockwood, Andrews & Newman, known as LAN, were accused of not doing enough to get Flint to treat the highly corrosive water or to urge a return to a regional water supplier.

A mistrial was declared in federal court in Ann Arbor, Michigan, court spokesman David Ashenfelter said.

After hearing months of evidence, the jury began full deliberations on July 25 but also took a planned 11-day break before returning Tuesday.

The trial centered on the engineering firms and the effects of lead on four children, not all Flint residents. But the result was being closely watched because it would likely influence possible settlements or trials in other cases.

Veolia and LAN were not part of a landmark $626 million deal involving thousands of residents of the majority-Black city, the state of Michigan and other parties.

Citing cost, Flint managers appointed by then-Gov. Rick Snyder stopped using water from a Detroit agency and switched to the Flint River while awaiting a new pipeline to Lake Huron.

The water became contaminated in 2014-15 because water pulled from the river wasn’t treated to reduce the corrosive effect on lead pipes. The Michigan Civil Rights Commission said the contaminated water was the result of systemic racism in the city, doubting that the water switch and the brush-off of complaints would have occurred in a white, prosperous community.

During closing arguments, attorneys for the children argued that Veolia should be held 50% responsible for lead contamination and that LAN should be held 25% responsible, with public officials making up the balance.

But Veolia’s lawyers noted the firm was briefly hired in the middle of the crisis, not before the spigot was turned on. LAN said an engineer repeatedly recommended that Flint test the river water for weeks to determine what treatments would be necessary.

LAN attorney Wayne Mason said outside engineers were getting lumped in with a “platoon of bad actors,” namely state and local officials who controlled all major decisions and seemed more concerned about the cost of water than its quality.

Snyder was summoned as a witness but declined to answer questions, citing his right against self-incrimination. He was indicted on misdemeanor charges in a separate Flint water investigation, but the Michigan Supreme Court said the indictment was invalid. State prosecutors are trying to reinstate the charges.

The jury instead watched a video of Snyder’s 2020 interview with lawyers.

“I wish this would never have happened,” he said of the water mess, acknowledging mistakes by government.


The IRS is set to get billions for audit enforcement. Here’s what it means for taxpayers

The Democrats’ Inflation Reduction Act calls for delivering nearly $80 billion to the IRS over 10 years. After months of negotiations over the sweeping spending package, the Senate passed the bill earlier this month, sending the legislation to the House for a vote before it reaches President Joe Biden’s desk.
IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, along with his predecessor, have asked Congress for additional funding. The agency’s budget has shrunk by more than 15% over the last decade. As a result, staffing levels and audit rates have been declining for years.
What's in the Manchin-Schumer deal on climate, health care and taxes
But some Republicans are attacking the proposed increase in IRS funding, arguing that it would leave more middle-class Americans and small businesses with the headache of facing a tax audit.

Democrats, and Rettig — who was appointed by former President Donald Trump — have said repeatedly that the intent is not to target the middle class but instead focus on making sure wealthy tax cheats comply with the law. It’s ultimately up to the IRS how the money is used.

“The IRS has for too long been unable to pursue meaningful, impactful examinations of large corporate and high-net-worth taxpayers to ensure they are paying their fair share,” Rettig wrote in a letter sent to lawmakers last week.

“The goal should not only be to increase audits, but improve the productivity of audits. You want the IRS to select the businesses and people for audits who really have not been compliant,” said Janet Holtzblatt, senior fellow at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center.

Here’s what it could mean to taxpayers if the IRS gets an increase in funding:

How much funding will the IRS receive?

The Inflation Reduction Act would provide nearly $80 billion to the IRS over 10 years, in addition to the money the agency normally receives from Congress on an annual basis. The IRS received nearly $12.6 billion for fiscal year 2022.

The new funding would result in a more than 50% increase in IRS funding adjusted for inflation, Holtzblatt said.

The $80 billion would be spread across four different areas of the IRS over the next decade.

More than half, about $45.6 billion, would go toward strengthening enforcement activities — including collecting taxes owed, providing legal support, conducting criminal investigations and providing digital asset monitoring, according to the bill text.

More than $25 billion would be allocated to support IRS operations, including expenses like rent payments, printing, postage and telecommunications.

Nearly $4.8 billion would be used for modernizing the agency’s customer service technology, like developing a callback service.

Roughly $3 billion would be allocated for taxpayer assistance, filing and account services.

How many new auditors could be hired?

The Republican National Committee and several Republican lawmakers have criticized the new IRS funding, claiming that it will provide the agency with an “army of 87,000 new IRS agents.”
But that number is misleading. The Treasury Department did estimate in 2021 that a nearly $80 billion investment in the IRS could allow the agency to hire 86,852 full-time employees over the course of a decade. But that figure accounts for all workers, not solely enforcement agents.
Still, hiring more than 86,000 workers over 10 years could be a huge increase for the IRS, which currently has nearly 80,000 employees. But the number of IRS staff has declined over the past decade, currently standing at 1970s levels, and the agency is expected to keep losing people.
Earlier this year, Rettig told lawmakers that the IRS would need to hire 52,000 people over the next six years just to maintain current staffing levels to replace those who retire or otherwise leave.

The Inflation Reduction Act does not instruct the IRS to hire a certain number of enforcement agents, and the agency would need to decide on staffing plans.

“The resources to modernize the IRS will be used for sorely needed improvements to taxpayer services — from answering the phones to improving 1960s-era IT systems — and to crack down on wealthy and corporate tax evaders who cost the American people hundreds of billions of dollars each year,” Natasha Sarin, Treasury Department counselor for tax policy and implementation, said in a statement sent to CNN.

“The majority of new employees will replace the standard level of staff departures over the next few years,” she added.

How much more would the IRS be able to collect in federal taxes?

With an increase in funding for enforcement activities, the IRS will be able to conduct more audits and, as a result, collect more federal tax revenue.

The Congressional Budget Office expects increased collection to amount to roughly $203 billion over 10 years, raising net federal revenue by more than $124 billion during that time period when accounting for the nearly $80 billion that would be spent.

Tougher enforcement is intended to close what’s known as the “tax gap,” or the difference between the amount of tax revenue the government is collecting and what taxpayers actually owe. There are some bad actors who try to evade paying what they owe to Uncle Sam, but some inadvertent errors made by taxpayers drive the tax gap, too.

An older IRS estimate, based on tax years 2011, 2012 and 2013, found that nearly 84% of federal taxes are paid voluntarily and on time, leaving about $381 billion ultimately uncollected. Rettig has told lawmakers in the past that he believes the tax gap could be as much as $1 trillion a year now.
Audit rates of individual income tax returns decreased for all income levels between tax years 2010 to 2019 as staff levels and funding also declined, according to the Government Accountability Office. On average, individual tax returns were audited over three times more often during tax year 2010 than in tax year 2019.

Who may be more likely to face an IRS audit?

Selection for an audit doesn’t always suggest there’s a problem, according to the IRS. Sometimes returns are selected at random.

The Biden administration has repeatedly said that it wants the IRS to focus increased enforcement activity on high-wealth taxpayers and large corporations and not target households that earn less than $400,000 a year.

In his letter to lawmakers last week, Rettig wrote “that audit rates will not rise relative to recent years for households making under $400,000.”

He also said that better technology and customer service would make it less likely that compliant taxpayers would be audited.

Yellen directs IRS not to use new funding to increase chances of audits of Americans making less than $400,000

This week, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen publicly reiterated Rettig’s statement, noting that the new enforcement resources will instead “focus on high-end noncompliance.”

Lawmakers also included language in the bill that aims to clarify who is the focus of a ramp-up in audits.

The bill says that the new investment in the IRS is not “intended to increase taxes on any taxpayer or small business with a taxable income below $400,000.”

Still, there is some uncertainty about how exactly the IRS will decide how to ramp up audits.

“Clearly this is going to be something that Congress and other interested parties are going to try and monitor — but good luck,” Holtzblatt said.

“I think it’s going to be a difficult commitment to observe whether it’s being followed,” she added.



The Washington Post: FBI searched Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence for classified nuclear documents

The people did not offer additional details to the Post about “what type of information the agents were seeking” or whether any such documents were recovered, according to the paper.

The revelation adds key context to the Justice Department’s extraordinary decision to search for the home of a former president.

As CNN previously reported, the criminal investigation started with concerns about missing documents raised by the National Archives, which made a criminal referral to the Justice Department upon discovering highly sensitive documents among the materials retrieved from Mar-a-Lago in January. The 15 boxes contained some materials that were part of special access programs (SAP), a classification that includes protocols to significantly limit who would have access to the information, according to a source familiar with what the Archives discovered in the boxes. That led to FBI interviews with aides to grand jury subpoenas to this week’s court-authorized search and seizure of documents.

Though Attorney General Merrick Garland has declined to share specific details about the search, he said Thursday that he “personally approved” the decision to seek a warrant for the search of Trump’s Florida home.

“The department does not take such a decision lightly. Where possible, it is standard practice to seek less intrusive means as an alternative to a search and to narrowly scope any search that is undertaken,” Garland said in a news conference.

The attorney general also said that the Justice Department had filed a request in court that the search warrant and property receipt from the search be unsealed.
Merrick Garland just called Donald Trump's bluff

Trump said in a late-night post on his Truth Social platform Thursday that he would “not oppose the release of documents,” adding, “I am going to step further by ENCOURAGING the immediate release of those documents.”

CNN reported earlier Thursday that Trump and his legal team had not yet reached a decision on how to respond to the Justice Department’s motion, according to a source familiar with their thinking.

Since the search, top congressional Republicans have rushed to Trump’s defense, casting the move as politically motivated. The former President has denied all wrongdoing, claiming the investigation is intended to derail his potential bid to return to the White House.

In a pair of posts to Truth Social following Garland’s statement, Trump continued to claim that his attorneys were “cooperating fully” and had developed “very good relationships” with federal investigators prior to Monday’s search at Mar-a-Lago.

The search warrant had been authorized by a federal court, Garland said.

“It is a federal crime to remove classified documents wrongly. And so if you are filling out that affidavit and you have to list the crime, you can list that as the crime,” said Elie Honig, a former federal and state prosecutor and a CNN senior legal analyst, following the search warrant.

This story has been updated with additional information Friday.

CNN’s Tierney Sneed, Evan Perez, Hannah Rabinowitz and Zachary Cohen contributed to this report.



Texas nurse facing murder charges for fiery Los Angeles crash was reportedly volatile after breakups

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Editor’s note: This story discusses suicide. If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

The traveling nurse who is facing murder charges for allegedly plowing through a Los Angeles intersection at 90 mph last week reportedly had a history of acting erratically and threatening suicide after breakups.

Prosecutors said that 37-year-old Nicole Linton had been in 13 wrecks, including one in 2020 that caused bodily injury, before she allegedly sped through a red light on Aug. 4 in the Windsor Hills neighborhood, igniting a fiery wreck and killing six people.

Linton is now facing six counts of murder and five counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence.

Her attorney requested that her arraignment on Monday be continued and said that Linton has “documented profound mental health issues,” according to the Los Angeles Times.

Nicole Linton appears in Los Angeles Superior Court for arraignment on murder charges stemming from a traffic accident.

Nicole Linton appears in Los Angeles Superior Court for arraignment on murder charges stemming from a traffic accident.
(Frederick M. Brown/Daily via AP, Pool)

Linton was previously romantically involved with Germaine Mason, an Olympic medal-winning track and field athlete from Jamaica who died in a motorcycle crash in 2017, the Daily Mail reports.

“Nicole was different after that. She really loved that guy. She said they’d spoken about marriage. I don’t think she’s ever got over that,” a friend told the news outlet.


Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said Monday that investigators are still looking into the crash, but as of now, there was no evidence of drugs or alcohol in Linton’s system.

The wreck killed 23-year-old Asherey Ryan, who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant and on her way to a prenatal checkup. Ryan’s 11-month-old son and her boyfriend of hers were also killed.

Two other women who have not yet been identified were also killed in the crash.


Linton reportedly worked at strip clubs in New York City before becoming a nurse, with a friend describing her as volatile after breakups.

“When I saw what had happened in LA, the first thing that went through my mind was that she had argued with her boyfriend and was drunk and trying to commit suicide,” a source close to Linton told the Daily Mail.

Linton reportedly worked as a traveling nurse in Texas for years but had most recently been at Kaiser Permanente West Los Angeles Medical Center in California.

London Carter, with Southern Missionary Baptist Church, prays over a makeshift memorial across the street from where a fiery multi-car crash left six dead, including a pregnant woman, and injured others in Windsor Hills in Los Angeles.

London Carter, with Southern Missionary Baptist Church, prays over a makeshift memorial across the street from where a fiery multi-car crash left six dead, including a pregnant woman, and injured others in Windsor Hills in Los Angeles.
(Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

She was hospitalized at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center over the weekend and was being held on $2 million bail, but that was increased to $9 million when she was released from the hospital.


“This is a case that will always be remembered for the senseless loss of so many innocent lives as they simply went about their daily routines,” Gascón said in a statement.

Linton’s attorney declined to comment on Thursday.

Fox News’s Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.


Justice Department moves to unseal search warrant used to seize documents from Trump’s home

Washington— The Justice Department moved Thursday to unseal the search warrant used by federal agents to six documents from former President Donald Trump’s home in Florida, with Attorney General Merrick Garland revealing he “personally approved” the extraordinary step to seek the warrant.

In brief remarks from the Justice Department as the government filed its request in federal court, Garland defended the move to have dozens of federal agents descend on Trump’s home at Mar-a-Lago, saying he “does not take such decisions lightly.” I have noted, however, that he was bound by federal law, department rules and ethical obligations from providing more information about the basis of the search. CBS News has reported the search was related to an investigation into documents Trump took with him when he left the White House.

“Faithful adherence to the role of law is the bedrock principle of the Justice Department and our democracy. Upholding the rule of law means applying the law evenly without fear or favor,” he said. “Under my watch, that is precisely what the Justice Department is doing. All Americans are entitled to the even-handed application of the law, to due process of the law and to the presumption of innocence.”

The decision by the Justice Department to ask the court to make the warrant public was made “in light of the former president’s public confirmation of the search, the surrounding circumstances and the substantial interest in this matter,” Garland said.

US Attorney General Merrick Garland speaks about the FBI's search warrant served at the home of former President Donald Trump in Washington
Attorney General Merrick Garland speaks about the FBI’s search warrant served at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida during a statement at the US Justice Department in Washington on Aug. 11, 2022.


He noted that the warrant was authorized by a federal court in South Florida “upon the required finding of probable cause,” and copies of the warrant and a list of property seized by the FBI — required by law to be left with the property owner — were provided to Trump’s attorneys on the day of the search.

One of Trump’s lawyers, Lindsey Halligan, confirmed to CBS News that she and a second attorney, Christina Bobb, a former television host for the far-right One America News network, were at Mar-a-Lago while the search was conducted.

In its filing in the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida, the Justice Department cited the “intense public interest” in the search of a former president’s residence to ask a federal magistrate judge in Florida to unseal the search warrant and accompanying information, as well as the list of seized items, “absent objection from the former president.”

“The press and the public enjoy a qualified right of access to criminal and judicial proceedings and the judicial records filed therein,” wrote US Attorney Juan Antonio Gonzalez and Jay Bratt, head of the Justice Department’s counterintelligence and export control section. They added that the “public’s clear and powerful interest in understanding what occurred under these circumstances weighs heavily in favor of unsealing.”

The judge quickly ordered federal prosecutors to confer with Trump’s attorneys and determine whether they oppose the motion to unseal the warrant and related documents, setting a deadline of 3 pm Friday for the Trump team’s response.

in to late night post on his social media site, former President Trump said that he would not oppose the release of the warrant, and is in fact “ENCOURAGING the release” of documents related to what he called “the unAmerican, unwarranted and unnecessary raid and break-in of my home in Palm Beach.”

The New York Times and Times Union of Albany, New York, along with the conservative organization Judicial Watch, filed separate requests with the court on Wednesday to obtain access to all documents — including any underlying affidavits — related to the search warrant. CBS News on Thursday requested to join the Times’ effort to make the search warrant and other related materials public.

Special Report: Garland announces move to unseal search warrant for Mar-a-Lago


Garland’s comments came amid increasing pressure from Republicans to address the search by the FBI at Mar-a-Lago. The former president revealed the search, and sources confirmed to CBS News that it was connected to a Justice Department investigation into Trump’s handling of presidential records. In January, the National Archives and Records Administration retrieved 15 boxes of presidential records, some of which contained classified national security materialfrom Mar-a-Lago, and asked the Justice Department to investigate.

During the search, the FBI took boxes and documents, two sources confirmed to CBS News, and no electronics were taken. One official said some or possibly all of the seized records contained classified information.

Sources familiar with the matter told CBS News on Thursday that a federal grand jury issued a subpoena related to the document investigation in the spring, before Justice Department officials met with Trump attorneys at Mar-a-Lago in June regarding the records. The online news outlet Just the News first reported the existence of the subpoena.

Trump and his GOP allies were quick to denounce the unprecedented search, claiming without evidence that it was a politically motivated attack against a likely challenger to Mr. Biden in 2024. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy vowed to investigate the Justice Department if Republicans win control of the House in the November midterm elections, telling Garland in a tweet to preserve records and prepare to testify next year.

But Garland defended the department from the attacks by Republicans about its credibility and independence.

“I will not stand by silently when their integrity is unfairly attacked,” he said. “The men and women of the FBI and Justice Department are dedicated, patriotic public servants. Every day they protect the American people form violent crime, terrorism and other threats to their safety, while safeguarding our civil rights.”

The White House did not know in advance that Garland would be delivering a statement, and officials learned of it through news reports, a White House official told CBS News ahead of his remarks. President Biden left Washington on Wednesday for a vacation to Kiawah Island, South Carolina.

Robert Costa and Andres Triay contributed reporting.


Woman killed on South Carolina beach by umbrella caught up in gust of wind

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A woman was killed on Wednesday in Garden City, South Carolina, after a loose beach umbrella impaled her in the chest, according to authorities.

The umbrella was blown by the wind from its anchoring in the sand at around 12:40 pm, hitting Tammy Perreault, 63, in the chest, Horry County Chief Deputy Coroner Tamara Willard told news outlets.

Perrault was taken to the Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries, local news station WMBF reported.


Scotty’s Beach Bar in Surfside Beach posted on social media about Perreault and the loss, according to Fox 8.

“Today with heavy hearts we mourn the loss of a dear friend and kind-hearted local, Tammy Perreault,” according to the post.

“Some things we will never begin to understand but what we do know is no one has a bad thing to say about this woman. To be as sweet as her day in and day out should be a goal for all.”

Beach umbrellas can pose a hazard when they come loose from their anchoring in the sand and are caught up in gusts of wind.

Beach umbrellas can pose a hazard when they come loose from their anchoring in the sand and are caught up in gusts of wind.

About 3,000 people are injured by beach umbrellas every year, according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.

A beach umbrella’s wide canopy allows it to get caught up in a strong wind if it is not anchored properly, while the spiked end poses a danger, the group noted further.

In 2016, Lottie Michelle Belk of Chester, Virginia, was killed by a flying beach umbrella on Virginia Beach in a similar manner.


In that instance, a beach umbrella anchored in the sand was picked up by a strong gust of wind, blowing it into Belk’s body.

Police said the umbrella stabbed Belk, 55, in the chest — and her cause of death was penetrating blunt force trauma, according to local station WTKR.

Safety tips for beach umbrellas include tilting the umbrella into the wind — and anchoring the base of the pole with some weight to stabilize it.

Safety tips for beach umbrellas include tilting the umbrella into the wind — and anchoring the base of the pole with some weight to stabilize it.
(REUTERS/Eric Gaillard)

Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, Democrats in Virginia, asked the Consumer Product Safety Commission to review beach umbrellas and start a safety campaign in 2016, after Belk’s death.

In 2019, the senators wrote to the agency again, reported the Virginian-Pilot, suggesting they consider an effort similar to July 4th safety campaigns or the successful “Safe Sleep Campaign,” which educated parents about making baby nurseries safer.

A beach umbrella’s wide canopy allows it to get caught up in a strong wind if it is not anchored properly, while the spiked end poses a danger.

The commission recently reported on its website that Andrew Newens, directorate for Engineering Sciences, was scheduled to participate in a teleconference with a Beach Umbrellas Task Group on July 27, 2022.

“This conference call was requested by ASTM [American Society for Testing and Materials] to discuss the creation of a new standard test method for the strength and durability of consumer beach umbrellas,” the website noted.


Fox News Digital reached out to Newens for comment

Fox News Digital also reached out to the Consumer Product Safety Commission for comment.

The US Consumer Products and Safety Commission was asked by two senators in 2016 to evaluate beach umbrellas for safety.

The US Consumer Products and Safety Commission was asked by two senators in 2016 to evaluate beach umbrellas for safety.

The commission offers the following five tips for beach umbrella safety on its website:

1. Spike your beach pole umbrella into the sand.

2. Firmly rock it back and forth until it’s buried at least 2 feet deep.


3. Tilt it into the wind to keep it from blowing away and hurting someone.

4. Anchor the base of the pole with some form of anchor or weight.

5. Ensure that the sand is well-packed around the base.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.


Instagram model Courtney Clenney charged with murdering boyfriend Christian Toby Obumseli in Florida apartment

Social media model Courtney Clenney has been charged with second-degree murder over the April death of her boyfriend, Christian Toby Obumseli, Miami State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said Thursday. Clenney, 26, was arrested in Hawaii on Wednesday on a charge of second-degree murder with a deadly weapon.

At a press Tuesday, Rundle described an “extremely tempestuous and combative conference relationship” between the couple that began in November 2020. According to Clenney’s arrest warrant, there had been “multiple incidents of domestic violence from both sides” during the relationship.

She said that security staff at the building documented “many instances” of loud arguments between the pair after they moved into the apartment in January 2022, adding that tenants as far as two floors above the apartment had complained to the building about the noise.

Rundle also showed a video from a building elevator in February 2022 that appeared to show Clenney shoving and hitting Obumseli. According to the arrest warrant, she had also been charged with domestic battery against Obumseli in a hotel in Las Vegas in July 2021.

Rundle said that the couple briefly separated when Clenney kicked Obumseli out of her apartment in late March, but he returned on April 1. Police were called to the apartment later that day, and Clenney appeared “intoxicated” at the time, Rundle said.

This photo provided by the Hawaii Police Department shows Courtney Clenney.


On the day of Obumseli’s death, he left the apartment at 1:15 pm and returned at 4:33 pm with sandwiches for the pair, Rundle said. Clenney called her mother de ella at 4:43 and spoke for six minutes, and called her again at 4:49 and spoke for seven minutes, Rundle said. At 4:57, she called 911 to report that Obumseli had been stabbed. During that time, neighbors called the building about a disturbance and security also called 911, Rundle said.

Rundle said Obumseli can be heard saying that he was dying and losing feeling in his arm on her 911 call, and that Clenney was heard saying “I’m so sorry.” When police arrived, Clenney was cradling Obumseli’s body, according to her arrest warrant. He later died of his injuries at the hospital.

Clenney later told police she had stabbed Obumseli after he grabbed her by the throat and shoved her against the wall, Rundle said. She allegedly said she ran to the kitchen, grabbed a knife, and threw it at him from about 10 feet away.

But Rundle said police did not find any evidence that Clenney had been harmed and said the medical examiner disputed her account of the incident, noting that Obumseli’s injury was much more consistent with a “downward strike” with the knife than with a throw from such a far distance.

Rundle said the chief medical examiner for Miami-Dade County determined that Obumseli was killed by a three-inch deep stab wound to the chest.

“The violent and toxic two-year relationship of Christian Obumseli and Courtney Clenney did not have to end in tragedy with Christian’s murder as a victim of domestic violence,” Rundle said.

In a recorded telephone statement to police documented in the arrest warrant, Clenney’s mother allegedly told authorities that she heard Clenney telling Obumseli to leave and Clenney saying that Obumseli was “lying.” Her mother did not say anything about her daughter being, the warrant said, and while she allegedly told investigators that she had not discussed Obumseli’s death with her daughter, the warrant cited a 5:25 pm text message from “mom” on the defendant’s phone that mentioned “self-defense” and told her not to speak with investigators without an attorney.

An attorney for Obumseli’s family said at the press conference the family “always believed that with a thorough and fair investigation, this day would come to reality.”

When why it took so long to press charges on the April incident, Miami police chief Manuel Morales said it was critical to ensure the charge would stand up in court.

“You only get one shot,” he told reporters. “You want to get it right.”

Hawaii County police said in a prior statement they assisted the US Marshals Service as they arrested Clenney in Laupahoehoe, which is on the Big Island. Officers used an arrest warrant issued by Miami-Dade County, Florida.

Clenney waived extradition during her initial court appearance Thursday in Hilo District Court, paving the way for her to return to Florida. She is being held at the East Hawaii Detention Center while she awaits that extradition, police said.

Christian Toby Obumseli

Facebook/Christian Toby Obumseli

Clenney uses the name Courtney Tailor on Instagram and OnlyFans, where she has more than 2 million followers.

Her Miami defense lawyer, Frank Prieto, told CBS Miami that she was in Hawaii while in rehabilitation for substance abuse and post-traumatic stress disorder.

“I’m completely shocked, especially since we were cooperating with the investigation and offered to voluntarily surrender her if she were charged,” Prieto said before the Thursday press conference. “We look forward to clearing her name in court.”

Prieto said the two were together for about two years and their relationship was complicated.

“It was clearly a toxic relationship, (they) had their ups and downs and, unfortunately, it culminated with his death,” he said.

Prieto said Clenney was actively seeking professional help to process the trauma experienced on the night of the stabbing.

Obumseli’s family said that he was a soft-spoken man and the idea that this was warranted is unthinkable, CBS Miami reported.

“We have no cause to believe that this was a case of self-defense. Toby was raised with a, by a very strong family with strong morals, strong values, he does not come from that,” said Karen Egbuna, a cousin of Obumseli who also appeared at the press conference.



How CNN, Fox, MSNBC covered it


Joe, Hunter Biden staying for free at $20 million South Carolina mansion

President Biden and his family, including disgraced first son Hunter, are spending their summer vacation at a $20 million beachfront mansion in South Carolina, The Post has learned — and they’re not paying a dime.

The president recently asked prominent Democratic donor Maria Allwin — the widow of hedge fund founder James Allwin — if he could stay at her nine-bedroom Kiawah Island estate, a source close to the family told The Post.

“They stayed here before and they’re not paying,” the source said. “They’ve never paid. They’re just friends.”

The property features a large swimming pool on two acres and is surrounded by palm trees and other lush vegetation for privacy.

The White House frustrated reporters by offering little transparency about Biden’s South Carolina trip, which is expected to last through early next week.

Associated Press emphasized Wednesday that the White House “did not respond to requests to provide details on Biden’s vacation schedule, activities or when he planned to return to Washington, nor did it provide information on the residence where he was staying.”

aerial of mansion
The property is surrounded by lush vegetation for privacy.
Charleston Trident MLS

However, the Federal Aviation Administration’s website indicates “temporary flight restrictions for VIP Movement” will be in place over Kiawah until 9:15 pm Tuesday.

The Bidens have often stayed at Allwin’s mansion, which was listed for sale earlier this year — including as early as 2009, while Joe Biden was vice president.

Maria Allwin has contributed to an array of mostly Democratic political campaigns, but her most recent donations are to Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) and a PAC supporting her effort to beat back a primary challenge by Donald Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman.

Ahead of the 2020 election, Allwin generously supported Biden, sending a $35,000 check that September to the Biden Victory Fund and the Democratic National Committee, according to Federal Election Commission records.

President Joe Biden, center, waves as he is joined by, from left, are Hunter Biden, grandson Beau Biden, first lady Jill Biden, and daughter-in-law Melissa Cohen
The excursion is a Biden family getaway, with son Hunter Biden joining as well.
Susan Walsh/AP
Aerial of backyard, pool
The homeowner, Maria Allwin, is a big-time contributor to an array of political campaigns, supporting Biden in 2020.
Charleston Trident MLS

The source said, however, that the Allwins and the Bidens are not engaged in business dealings together — and added the family is not directly linked to Hunter Biden, whose foreign business deals are under federal investigation. The first sons recently paid about $2 million to the IRS in a bid to avoid tax fraud charges.

Maria Allwin has known Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden socially for more than a decade, according to the source.

The Allwin family’s firm, Aetos Capital, is currently run by Maria Allwin’s son, Chris. The firm’s holdings include California-issued carbon credits.

Biden has stayed at the homes of other wealthy benefactors before. In November, his family spent Thanksgiving at billionaire private equity investor David Rubenstein’s compound on Nantucket, drawing raised eyebrows from ethics experts.

“Just a friendly reminder, [Biden] will have to pay fair market value for the stay on Nantucket or disclose the gift of free lodging in his annual disclosure in May 2022. I’m not suggesting he wouldn’t, just reminding not to let it slip through the cracks,” Walter Shaub, director of the US Office of Government Ethics under former President Barack Obama, tweeted at the time.

Shaub added regarding that stay, “There’s a disclosure exception for personal hospitality, but that only applies if the head of the Carlyle Group is staying there with the Bidens. I suspect the WH is all over compliance with the rule — and oblivious to the ethical optics.”

President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden
A source told The Post that the Biden family has never paid for their stay in the home because they are friends with the owner.
Joshua Roberts/REUTERS
inside mansion
The home features nine bedrooms on two acres of Kiawah Island in South Carolina.
Charleston Trident MLS

The Allwin family declined to comment and the White House did not immediately respond to The Post’s inquiry.

Biden also has yet to comment on the FBI raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate, which reportedly dealt with the ex-president’s possession of records that may contain classified information. White House aides say Biden had no advance knowledge of the raid, which Republicans say demonstrates a double standard compared to the FBI’s investigation of the Biden family finances.



Attorney of Irvine dermatologist accused of poisoning says Drano wasn’t meant for husband

The attorney of the Irvine dermatologist accused of poisoning her husband with drain cleaner claimed she was pouring Drano into a cup to fix plumbing issues.

Dr. Yue Emily Yu, a 45-year-old Southern Californian dermatologist, was arrested on Aug. 4 on suspicion of poisoning her radiologist husband, Dr. Jack Chen.

Chen submitted three videos captured by a hidden camera in July that allegedly support his claim that his wife had been poisoning him. Screenshots, which were shared with news outlets, show Yu pouring Drano brand drain cleaner into a cup.

However, David Wohl, Yu’s attorney, claimed that she was using Drano for their kitchen’s plumbing issues. Wohl said Yu would pour the drain cleaner into a cup to avoid splashing.

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“The idea that my client, who is a 45-year-old well-respected dermatologist in Orange County, would destroy her life, destroy her children’s lives and try to kill her husband is just completely absurd and untrue — and for that matter defamatory ,” Wohl told CBSNews.

“Anytime she poured Drano into a cup it was completely empty,” Wohl added. “It was for facilitating use in the sink or any other part of the house that was clogged as far as the drainage goes, but she never poured any Drano or any chemical into any drink that her husband used or was drinking ever. That’s completely untrue.”

Steven Hittelman, Chen’s lawyer, disputed Wohl’s claim. He said that Yu can be seen pouring Drano into Chen’s lemonade once he leaves the room in the videos captured by a hidden camera.

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The videos have not been released to news outlets.

Chen told police that he had been observing a chemical taste in his lemonade. Hittelman said that his client of him was diagnosed with physical issues, including gastritis, stomach ulcers and an inflammation of the esophagus, in March and April.

Yu, who has not been charged, was released on Aug. 5 after posting her bond of $30,000. Chen previously filed for an emergency restraining order, claiming that he and their two children are victims of physical and emotional abuse. He also filed for divorce and is seeking sole custody of their children.

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“He was desperate to have reasons to gain custody of the children,” Wohl told CBS News. “We completely believe that these claims he made are all part and parcel of that effort.”

Featured Image via CBS Los Angeles

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