Missouri governor who admitted affair is indicted

By Jim Salter | Associated Press

ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis grand jury has indicted Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on a felony invasion of privacy charge for allegedly taking a compromising photo of a woman with whom he had an affair in 2015, the city circuit attorney’s office said Thursday.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Thursday that Greitens was taken into custody, booked and released on his own recognizance.

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St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner launched an investigation in January after Greitens admitted to an affair with his St. Louis hairdresser that began in March 2015. He was elected governor in November 2016.

Gardner declined comment beyond a brief news release, but spokeswoman Susan Ryan confirmed the indictment stemmed from a photo Greitens allegedly took of the woman.

The indictment states that on March 21, 2015, Greitens photographed a woman identified only by her initials “in a state of full or partial nudity” without her knowledge or consent. The indictment said Greitens “transmitted the image contained in the photograph in a manner that allowed access to that image via a computer.”

The woman told her husband, who was secretly taping the conversation, that Greitens took the compromising photo of her at his home and threatened to use it as blackmail if she spoke about the affair. A news release from Gardner says it is a felony if a person transmits an image “in a manner that allows access to that image via a computer.”

Messages seeking comment from Greitens and his attorney were not immediately returned.

Greitens has repeatedly denied blackmailing the woman, but has repeatedly refused to answer questions about whether he took a photo.

…read more

Source:: The Mercury News

Denver City Council president faces campaign complaint over city promotion of birthday fundraiser

A screen shot taken on Feb. 21, 2018, shows that a post about a birthday and campaign fundraising event was visible in a Facebook feed on the office website of Denver City Council President Albus Brooks. His office has since removed social media feeds from the website.

A campaign complaint filed Thursday alleges that Denver city resources were used improperly to promote a fundraiser being held by City Council President Albus Brooks.

At issue is a birthday event set for March 10 that one of Brooks’ council aides posted on Facebook on a recent Friday during work hours, titled “Councilman Albus Brooks 39th Birthday Bash & Campaign Event.” Brooks, though, says the aide clocked out and was using personal time off to work for his 2019 re-election campaign, which has reported paying office staffers for tasks in past disclosures.

But the complaint, submitted to the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office by a Denver group called Strengthening Democracy Colorado, also alleges that it was improper to share the campaign event on his official Facebook and Twitter accounts. Those were embedded in feeds on his council office’s website. It also takes issue with the city of Denver’s official Twitter account retweeting a tweet about the event, commenting: “Count us in!”

Colorado’s Fair Campaign Practices Act bars state and local governments from making contributions to a campaign, including providing promotion or anything of value.

After the city account’s tweet about the event was questioned by several Twitter users, including a reporter, it was deleted. And since learning of the complaint, Brooks’ District 9 office has removed the social media feeds from its website because, he conceded, “that did blur the lines.”

But he took issue with the thrust of the complaint.

“Elected officials’ social media accounts are not considered city resources,” he said. “We use our accounts to discuss city issues, support candidates and promote our events.”

Screen shotA screen shot taken on Feb. 21, 2018, shows that a post about a birthday and campaign fundraising event was visible in a Facebook feed on the office website of Denver City Council …read more

Source:: The Denver Post

Amid raging debate about gun laws, Colorado’s Health Department took to Twitter to offer an alternative

The folks who run the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s social media accounts are hardly political firebrands.

Recent posts on the department’s Twitter feed include one about air quality, another about food safety, and a Valentine’s Day ode to the flu vaccine. But, as a debate over gun laws rages following the killings of 17 students and staff members at a Florida high school, CDPHE took to Twitter on Thursday to offer an alternative.

“Since 1996, federal policy has banned federal funding for gun violence research,” the tweet read. “If that policy — the #DickeyAmendement — was repealed, US health depts could conduct research and create evidence-based gun violence prevention programs. Isn’t that a cause we can all get behind?”

Since 1996, federal policy has banned federal funding for gun violence research. If that policy – the #DickeyAmendement – was repealed, US health depts could conduct research and create evidence-based gun violence prevention programs. Isn’t that a cause we can all get behind?

— CDPHE (@CDPHE) February 22, 2018

Asked about the post, Dr. Larry Wolk, CDPHE’s executive director, said the goal wasn’t to stoke political fires but to find a middle ground.

“There’s a role for research,” he said.

That’s a message that public health agencies, doctors and hospitals have been increasingly trying to spread, as the partisan gridlock over guns becomes more and more intractable. Last year, Denver Public Health put out a report looking at the demographic disparities in the city’s gun deaths. Earlier this month, the Colorado School of Public Health hosted an event at a shooting range where doctors learned more about the mechanics of guns and the data behind gun deaths.

In 2016, 781 people in Colorado died from gunshot wounds, nearly 100 more than the year before, …read more

Source:: The Denver Post

Chef Reem Assil will open Patterson’s next Oakland restaurant

Chef-baker Reem Assil will open a new Oakland restaurant, Dyafa, for DanielPatterson's Alta Group. (Photo courtesy of Eric Wolfinger)

Chef-baker Reem Assil’s star is rising — and quickly.

Chef-baker Reem Assil will open a new Oakland restaurant, Dyafa, for Daniel
Patterson’s Alta Group. (Photo courtesy of Eric Wolfinger)

Her popular bakery, Reem’s California, in Oakland’s Fruitvale district, has hit its one-year mark. She’s been named a James Beard Award semifinalist for that venture. And now comes word that she will open the next new Oakland restaurant for Daniel Patterson’s Alta Group.

The restaurant Dyafa — the word comes from the Arabic for hospitality — will take over Patterson’s former Haven space at Jack London Square.

Assil, a graduate of the La Cocina culinary incubator, plans a menu based on her Palestinian-Syrian upbringing. Look for shareable plates such as mezze with freshly baked bread and larger plates of braised meats, local seafood and grains. A bread hearth will be a major focus.

An April opening is envisioned. Stay tuned for updates.

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…read more

Source:: The Mercury News