PODCAST: Bill Cosby released from prison (BCNN1 07.02.21)

This is the Black Christian News Network One podcast. Here are the top stories you need to know about today.

According to the Daily Mail, Bill Cosby has been released from prison after Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court overturned his sexual assault conviction in a surprise decision, ruling that a 2005 public promise by a prosecutor that he wouldn’t charge him gave him a false sense of security and led him to incriminate himself. Cosby was jailed in 2018 for sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004. She had gone to the police in 2005 but the then Montgomery County DA Bruce Castor – who went on to become one of Trump’s impeachment lawyers – said publicly he was not going to pursue charges. The following year, Constand sued Cosby and in a civil deposition, he admitted using Quaaludes on women without their consent and said he did it to have sex with them. Over the next ten years, multiple women made claims against him publicly and with the police. In 2015, a new Montgomery County DA charged him, using the remarks he made in the 2005 deposition as part of the evidence against him. Cosby was convicted in 2018 and he appealed it, claiming it was an unfair prosecution in the first place and that he also didn’t get a chance at a fair trial because the judge allowed five women to testify as ‘bad act’ witnesses. Their allegations weren’t being prosecuted, but they all told stories of how he’d allegedly assaulted them.

According to the Daily Mail, The young daughter of a Miami firefighter supporting search operations at the site of the Surfside condo catastrophe was recovered from the rubble Thursday night. A first responder told news station Local10 that the father was at the scene when the girl was pulled from the debris by rescuers and draped his jacket over her body. He is then reported to have placed a small American flag on the gurney and escorted his child through a group of police and other firefighters who lined up on the roadway beside destroyed Champlain South Tower. Miami -Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava confirmed the discovery Friday and said the girl was among two victims found at the site on Thursday, bringing the death toll to 20, with 128 still unaccounted for. The victim and her father were not identified.

According to ABC News, A Houston mom was shot and killed while visiting Maryland to drop off her son at the U.S. Naval Academy, police said. Michelle Cummings, 57, was sitting on a hotel patio, enjoying the breeze, when she was shot multiple times just after midnight on Tuesday, Annapolis Police Chief Edward Jackson said. Cummings was with her husband and another couple at the time, police said. “It is believed that the shots were fired on Pleasant Street and traveled a short distance shooting the victim,” Jackson said at a news conference Tuesday. Cummings didn’t appear to be the intended target, police said. Cummings and her husband were in Annapolis to bring their son, a football prospect, to the U.S. Naval Academy, Jackson said. Her son, Midshipman Candidate Leonard Cummings III, graduated this year from the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Rhode Island, and is an incoming freshman for the Naval Academy Class of 2025, the Academy said. Last year, when he committed to the Naval Academy, Michelle Cummings told ABC Houston station KTRK-TV, “I love this kid dearly … We could not ask for a better son.” Superintendent Vice Adm. Sean Buck said in a statement, “We will do all that we can to support Leonard, his father and the entire Cummings family during this unfathomable time. My wife, Joanne, and I, on behalf of all of us here in Annapolis, offer our deepest sympathies.”

According to the 19th News, The board of trustees of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill voted Wednesday to extend an offer of a tenured professorship to The New York Times’ Nikole Hannah-Jones. The school had originally offered the Pulitzer Prize winner a tenured professorship, then changed the offer to a five-year contract after a conservative outcry, and now appears to have reinstated the original offer’s terms. Whether the MacArthur “Genius” grantee and 1619 Project creator will accept the offer remains unclear after the controversy and the changing offer, which her lawyers called “race and sex discrimination and retaliation.” Newspaper magnate Walter Hussman, a major donor to the school, had intervened behind closed doors to request that Hannah-Jones’ original offer be changed. R. Gene Davis Jr., vice chair of the board, said in a statement that the university “is not a place to cancel people or ideas. Neither is it a place for judging people and calling them names, like woke or racist.”

According to the Daily Mail, U.S. sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson has apologized to fans and is accepting responsibility for the failed drug test and subsequent 30-day ban that will keep her out of the 100 meter dash at the Tokyo Games, but says that she only used marijuana to help cope with the death of her mother before the Olympic trials in Oregon. ‘I just say don’t judge me because I am human,’ she told NBC’s Today on Friday. ‘I’m you, I just happen to run a little faster.’ Richardson explained that she learned about her mother’s passing from a reporter’s question during an interview days before she established herself as a gold medal contender by winning the 100 meter in 10.86 seconds at the US Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon on June 19. Afterwards, in an ’emotional panic,’ Richardson said she ingested marijuana, leading to her failed test. ‘I knew I was having an interview,’ she said Friday. ‘I was just thinking it would be a normal interview. And then… to hear that information come from a complete stranger, I was definitely triggering, it was nerve shocking because it’s just like, how are you to tell me that? And no offense against him at all. He was just doing his job. But definitely, that put me in a state of mind, in a state of emotional panic, if anything.’ But Richardson was not using her mother’s death to excuse her decision. Marijuana is legal in Oregon, so she didn’t break any law, but she did know the potential consequences of using the drug. ‘I want to apologize for my actions,’ she said. ‘I know what I did. I know what I’m supposed to do. What I’m allowed not to do and I still made that decision. But [I’m] not making an excuse or looking for any empathy in my case.’

According to ESPN, On a day when college athletes were officially granted rights to profit off their names, images and likenesses, former USC running back Reggie Bush made it clear he believes the Heisman Trophy he won in 2005 should be returned and his college statistics reinstated. “It is my strong belief that I won the Heisman trophy ‘solely’ due to my hard work and dedication on the football field and it is also my firm belief that my records should be reinstated,” Bush said in a statement. Bush returned his Heisman Trophy after a four-year extra-benefits investigation determined that he and family members, while he was a student-athlete, accepted cash, travel expenses and a home in the San Diego area where Bush’s parents lived rent-free for more than a year and were provided $10,000 to furnish. Sanctions from the investigation, which came in 2010, mandated that Bush disassociate from USC and included a two-year postseason ban for the school, 14 vacated victories (including the 2004 BCS national championship) and the loss of 30 scholarships. His 10-year disassociation period ended in June 2020.
According to Deadline, Apple Studios has secured the rights to Donald Spivey’s non-fiction book, “If You Were Only White: The Life of Leroy ‘Satchel’ Paige,” for drama development with an eye toward a series order. The high-profile Negro League Baseball project comes from Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Mandalay’s Peter Guber, and Oscar nominee Ron Shelton, who is behind such sports film classics as “Bull Durham” and “White Men Can’t Jump.” Apple Studios co-produces with Kapital Entertainment, which is also behind the upcoming ABC Emmett Till limited series “Women Of the Movement.” The Apple series will explore the epic and remarkable story of Negro League Baseball using the life and legacy of the legendary athlete and showman Leroy “Satchel” Paige, one of baseball’s greatest pitchers and star of Negro Leagues for many years. Apple Studios and Kapital Entertainment have partnered on the series with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, which is dedicated to preserving and celebrating the rich history of African American baseball. The project is also supported by MLB.

You can read these stories and more at BlackChristianNews.com .

In closing, remember, God loves you. He always has and He always will. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thanks so much for listening and may God bless your day!

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