Guess Which State Has The Most Capitol Riot Arrests?

Jacob Chansley, aka the QAnon Shaman, has been sentenced to 41 months in prison for his role in the Jan 6 Capitol Building invasion
Jake Angeli took part in the Capitol invasion (screen capture)

After receiving over 100,000 photo and video tips, the FBI has opened about 200 case files in tracking down and arresting the perpetrators of the January 6 invasion of the U.S. Capitol building.

The Soufan Center has been tracking the arrests to determine how far the insurrectionists traveled for the incident.

From Statista:

Up to January 22, arrests had been made in 35 out of 50 states with one person apprehended as far away as Hawaii. That individual was Nick Ochs who describes himself as “a Proud Boy Elder from Hawaii” who was arrested at Honolulu Airport upon his return from Washington.

So far, Texas has the highest arrest count out of all U.S. states with 14 apprehensions with New York and Florida following with 11 and 10, respectively.

(graphic via Statista)

‘Soho Karen’ Gives The Hand To Gayle King During Interview

Miya Ponsetto gives Gayle King 'the hand'
Miya Ponsetto gives Gayle King 'the hand'
Miya Ponsetto gives Gayle King ‘the hand’ (screen captures)

Miya Ponsetto, dubbed ‘Soho Karen’ in the press after accusing a Black teen of stealing her cell phone, was ‘forcibly arrested’ in California Thursday night.

NBC News reports the 22-year-old woman refused to stop her car when the police first contacted her. Upon reaching her home, she resisted arrest and had to be forcibly removed from her car.

During the incident, she tried to slam a car door on one of the officers which earned her an additional charge of resisting arrest.

Miya Ponsetto's mugshot
Miya Ponsetto (mugshot via Ventura County Sheriff’s Office)

You may recall Ponsetto garnering national attention when she accused (and eventually assaulted) the 14-year-old son of jazz musician Keyon Harrold of stealing her cell phone in the lobby of the Arlo Hotel in SoHo in New York City.

On social media, Harrold shared video footage of Ponsetto growing hysterical during the altercation that ended with her tackling the teen as he tried to exit the scene.

p.s. turned out she’d left the phone in an Uber and the driver had already returned the phone to the front desk of the hotel.

Prior to her arrest, Ponsetto recorded an interview with CBS This Morning’s Gayle King that aired on Friday morning.

Sitting next to her attorney and wearing a black ‘Daddy’ hat, Ponsetto did herself no favors by deflecting and/or denying practically any wrongdoing in the December 26 incident.

Speaking with King, Ponsetto admitted she could have “maybe not yelled at him like that and made him feel some sort of inferior way and making him feel as if I was like hurting his feelings.”

But describing herself as “super sweet,” she told King she “never, ever meant for it to hurt him or his father.” 

And yet, she tackled the teen, so, there’s that…

She also seemed confused as to how assaulting a teenage boy could be seen as criminal.

“I don’t feel like this one mistake defines me,” she added.

When King tried to put Ponsetto’s actions into context – that she’d physically attacked a teenaged boy, she responded, “How is one girl accusing a guy about a phone a crime? Where’s the context in that? What is the deeper story here?”

You’l note that the 22-year-old suddenly refers to herself as a “girl” but the 14-year-old she assaulted is “a guy.” Talk about coded language…

King again attempted to help Ponsetto own up to her actions saying, “You’re 22-years-old, you’re old enough to know better.”

“Alright, Gayle, enough,” replied Ponsetto complete with a ‘shut it’ hand motion.

Oh no she didn’t…

Miya Ponsetto gives Gayle King 'the hand'

It was at that point that the attorney finally chimed in whispering, “Ok, ok, stop, stop…”

Just to add perspective, Ponsetto was charged with public intoxication and battery at a Beverly Hills hotel last year in February, and also arrested for driving while intoxicated in Van Nuys, California, on May 28.

Miss Thing can get a bit messy it seems.

Ponsetto’s lawyer, Sharon Ghatan, told NBC News her client “suffers from a lot of anxiety attacks” and has concerns that she may be “emotionally and mentally unwell.”

Gayle King shared at the end of her segment this morning that a second part of the interview will air on Monday.

Twitter was not impressed by Miss Miya:

Gay Couple On Vacation Arrested For ‘Immoral Acts’ In Their Hotel Room

(stock photo via Depositphotos)


(stock photo via Depositphotos)
(stock photo via Depositphotos)

Imagine being arrested for having consensual sex in the privacy of your hotel room while on vacation.

That’s the situation two Vietnamese tourists found themselves in during a trip to Malaysia.

The New Straits Times reports Tang Van Duc, 22, and Lee Vu Linh, 29,  were arrested by the State Immigration Department in their hotel room in Penang for participating in “immoral acts” with an undercover officer on November 12.

The couple pleaded guilty to the charges in court, and Judge Norhayati Mohd Yunus ordered each of them to pay a fine of about $240 (RM1000). They also faced the embarrassment of their photo being posted by local news media.

The men had been visiting the country since October 18 on tourist visas.

I’ve reported on the grim situation for LGBTQ people in Malaysia many times in recent years.

Malaysia provides no legal protections for LGBTQ individuals, and those arrested for same-sex encounters face severe penalties – up to 20 years in prison as well as fines and public whippings.

Earlier this month, five men in Kuala Lumpur were sentenced to at least six months in prison and being whipped with a cane in public for “attempting to have gay sex.”

In August 2018, police raided a gay bar in the same city saying the arrests were an attempt to “stop the spread of LGBTQ culture in society, according to Pink News.

The next month two Malaysian women were caned for “attempting lesbian sex in a car.”

Duc and Linh enjoy a better legal situation in their own country of Vietnam.

Same-sex relations are legally permitted, gay/bisexual people are allowed to openly serve in the military, and a 2016 survey found rising support – up to 45% at the time – for marriage equality in Vietnam.

Wikileaks’ Julian Assange Arrested, Dragged From Ecuadorian Embassy In London

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange being dragged from Ecuadorian embassy in London

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange was arrested at the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he has lived since 2012.

He’s sought refuge there from sexual assault allegations against him in Sweden.

From the New York Times:

The United States has charged WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange of conspiring to hack a computer as part of the 2010 release of reams of secret American documents, according to an indictment unsealed Thursday, putting him just one flight away from being in American custody after years of seclusion in the Ecuadorean embassy in London.

The single charge, conspiracy to commit computer intrusion, was filed a year earlier, in March 2018, and stems from what prosecutors said was his agreement to break a password to a classified United States government computer. It carries a penalty of up to five years in prison and is significant in that it is not an espionage charge, a detail that will come as a relief to press freedom advocates. The United States government had considered until at least last year charging him with an espionage-related offense.

Mr. Assange, 47, has been living at the Ecuadorean Embassy in London since 2012. British authorities arrested him on Thursday, heavily bearded and disheveled. A dramatic video showed him shackled and being carried out of the embassy and forced into a police van. He was detained partly in connection with an American extradition warrant after he was evicted by the Ecuadoreans.

Donald Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, testified before a congressional committee in February that Trump’s close friend and adviser Roger Stone had bee in contact with Assange before WikiLeaks released leaked emails from the Democratic National Committee in 2016.

GOP Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska chimed in about the arrest via Twitter:

Jussie Smollett Will Not Appear In Final Season 5 Episodes Of ‘Empire’

Variety reports that Jussie Smollett, arrested and charged with filing a false police report yesterday in Chicago, will not appear in the final episodes of Season 5 of Fox's Empire.
Jussie Smollett

Variety reports that Jussie Smollett, arrested and charged with filing a false police report yesterday in Chicago, will not appear in the final episodes of Season 5 of Fox’s Empire.

“The events of the past few weeks have been incredibly emotional for all of us” said series executives Lee Daniels, Danny Strong, Brett Mahoney, Brian Grazer, Sanaa Hamri, Francie Calfo and Dennis Hammer in a statement released Friday.

“Jussie has been an important member of our ‘Empire’ family for the past five years and we care about him deeply.

“While these allegations are very disturbing, we are placing our trust in the legal system as the process plays out.

“We are also aware of the effects of this process on the cast and crew members who work on our show and to avoid further disruption on set, we have decided to remove the role of ‘Jamal’ from the final two episodes of the season.”

News Round-Up: December 11, 2018

Matthew Camp flies the friendlier skies
Matthew Camp (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

• As I board my plane to head home to Las Vegas from the fab Puerto Vallarta, let me inform you no one on my flight looks quite like Matt Camp (above), who I just chatted with for an upcoming interview.

• Michelle Obama has added EVEN MORE dates to her book tour as sales of her memoir, Becoming, have already exceeded 3 million copies in North America alone.

• Conservative Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin has a VERY interesting idea Donald Trump might use to stay out of jail if not re-elected.

• A Florida man has been sentenced to 3 years in prison for hooking up with straight men, telling them he was a woman, promising blindfolded anonymous sex and then filming them without their knowledge or consent.

• Yale Law School librarian Fred Shapiro has issued his annual list of the year’s most memorable quotes. Topping the list is Rudy Giuliano’s “Truth isn’t truth” quote from his interview on “Meet the Press,” August 19, 2018.

• Jim Marchese, who no one remembers from the 2014 season of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, is attempting to become relevant in some way via his blatant homophobia on social media telling his Twitter followers, “NO STRAIGHT MALE wants his son to be gay.”

He doubled down with even more homophobia:

Florida Press ‘Outs’ 13 Men Arrested In Back Room Raid

Last week, police in Hollywood, Florida, raided an adult book store and arrested 13 men who were having consensual sex in a private back room.

Undercover police officers went to the trouble of paying $25 to enter the private back rooms at the Pleasure Emporium. Finding men engaging in oral sex and masturbation, 13 men were arrested.

In the aftermath of the arrests, news outlets reported on the incident revealing the names, ages and mugshots of the men to the public.

From The Miami New Times:

Abbie Cuellar, a lawyer for one of the 13 men, told New Times her client has already been fired from his job in the medical field after his arrest at Pleasure Emporium.

Even worse, her client fled Cuba 20 years ago after being persecuted there for being gay. Since moving to the States, he had not come out to his co-workers. Cueller said the arrest — and the local media’s lurid coverage — outed her client and has pushed him into depression. New Times is not naming Cuellar’s client because of the harm the arrest has already done.

“He was persecuted in Cuba because of his sexuality,” Cuellar says. “He was thrown out of his home and thrown out of school because he was gay. He fled as a result and thought America was going to be this beacon of ‘freedom.’ He now basically has lost everything he has worked for… He is horribly suicidal.”

In a statement, a Hollywood police spokesman defended last week’s raid, calling the locked, private rooms that you have to pay to get into at Pleasure Emporium a “public space.”

As LGBTQNation points out, “indecent exposure in Florida has to occur in a public place or somewhere that can be viewed from a public place.”

Anyone who drives all the way to the Pleasure Emporium, enters the adult bookstore, and purchases a $25 ticket for the backroom could hardly be “worried” that other people would have sex around them.

“Clearly, this was a private setting within a private setting — you would have to pay to get into it,” Cuellar says. “It’s not in a residential neighborhood. There’s no danger a kid would ever walk past, even. The fact that they’ve been made out to be these sexual deviants, I feel like I’m back in the 1960s! I don’t understand the point of this arrest other than smearing and humiliating these men.”

NYC Man Files Lawsuit After Being Falsely Accused & Arrested For Bathroom Cruising

The New York Daily News recently reported the case of a Harlem man who was arrested on false allegations of indecent exposure as he used a restroom in Grand Central Terminal.

In court documents filed with the Manhattan Supreme Court, William Campbell says he was using a men’s restroom at Grand Central the morning of April 17, 2017, when a “man using the urinal next to petitioner (Campbell) leaned over and looked at petitioner’s penis.”

As Campbell “pushed the man away,” the stranger yelled out, “What are you doing, you f*cking f*ggot?!” He also called Campbell a “dirty homo.”

Within seconds, a Metropolitan Transportation Authority police officer raced into the restroom and grabbed Campbell.

Cuffing Campbell so tightly his “wrists bled,” the officer allegedly yelled to another cop, “Another pee-pee case!”

Campbell was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, exposure of a person and public lewdness.

Unable to raise the $1,000 bail immediately, Campbell spent 72 hours locked up until he could be arraigned.

The court documents indicate that after multiple court appearances and a trial, Campbell was eventually cleared of all charges.

Now, Campbell is suing for unspecified damages saying he was the victim of an “unlawful arrest.”

According to the Daily News, Campbell says the criminal complaint “falsely stated there were children in the restroom at the time petitioner was using the urinal, there were no children in the area; that petitioner unlawfully exposed his penis, he did not, he was using the urinal; and that petitioner was carrying in his backpack a knife with a 10-inch blade, he was not in possession of a knife.”

When asked for an official comment on the law suit, MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan issued a statement saying, “We cannot comment on the specifics of this case or any pending litigation. MTA police officers are vital to maintaining a safe environment for Metro-North customers and all who visit Grand Central.”

As a gay man, I’ve always been a bit ‘aware’ when using public restrooms in regards to body language and eye contact.

Like African-American men who might be stopped for ‘driving while black,’ its possible to find yourself in an innocent situation you might not be able to control.

Clearly, this is a nightmare come to life for anyone.

Have you ever found yourself falsely accused of similar charges?

(h/t The New York Daily News)