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Three male-to-female (MtF) transgenders escaped with their lives after a mob of 200 men attacked them with bottles and forced them to strip naked.

The incident occurred on Saturday, May 1, at Sunset Bar in Cotonou, Benin, a country in West Africa. The violence was captured on cell phone video and uploaded to social media.

The video was shared on Twitter by NGO and LGBT+ advocacy group Hirondelle Club Benin to spread awareness about violence against transgenders.

The video shows three MtF trans being harassed by a crowd of 200 men. The men force them to take off their clothes while they are being slapped and pelted with objects.

One of the victims told The Observers that the attack was planned.

"My man knew I was transgender and asked me to invite my transgender friends. When we arrived, he asked me to go outside.

Once we managed to get outside to help our friend, they began attacking the three of us. There were about 200 men there, and they forced us to strip naked while they laughed and filmed up. It was humiliating."

The victims were able to find shelter within Hirondelle Club Benin. But they said the "whole nation" – including "our families and bosses" – viewed the video of the attack after it went viral on social media.

"We'll never be able to find a job again," one of the victims said. "Everyone here is against us. Even young children in the street have been [pointing] fingers at us."

The video caption reads:

"We have just denounced an umpteenth aggression against people LGBTQi in Benin a few days before the celebration of May 17.We condemn these acts with the last rigor. We will come back for more details."

No arrests have been made.

WARNING: The video below contains violent imagery. Viewer discretion is advised.
 

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A Las Vegas man was shot 14 times and killed after he stabbed a police officer at a gun range he'd just robbed minutes earlier.

Las Vegas police say Marvin Payton Jr. tried to steal a gun out of a customer's bag at Range 702 in Clark County in February.

Surveillance video of the shooting was released to the public on Monday, May 3.

When employees confronted Payton, he fled into the parking lot where he was spotted by two arriving officers.

Payton was not armed initially, so the officers did not draw their weapons.

As the two officers approached Payton he pulled a screwdriver out of his pocket and stabbed a female officer several times.

Assistant Clark County Sheriff Brett Zimmerman told reporters on Monday that Payton was shot by Officer Andrew Nguyen and four employees of the shooting range.

Officer Nguyen fired his service weapon 9 times. The other 5 shots were fired by the employees. Payton was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officer Nguyen, who joined the force in 2018, was placed on paid leave pending an internal review of the officer-involved shooting.

The employees were not identified and they will not be charged in the shooting.

"Their involvement actually helped our officer and could have saved our officer's life," Zimmerman said.

Surveillance footage shows Payton leaving the facility as the two officers arrived in a patrol unit.

There is a brief scuffle and Payton produces the screwdriver and stabs the female officer.

The armed employees who were watching as the drama unfolded drew their weapons and opened fire.

Zimmerman said the officers didn't activate their body-worn video cameras.

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Alcoholic Beverage Control

A bar owner in California was busted for selling fake vaccination cards to undercover agents for $20 apiece, ABC News reports.

Agents from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control arrested Todd Anderson, 59, for making and selling fraudulent Covid-19 vaccination cards.

Anderson is the owner of the Old Corner Saloon in Clements, California. The department launched an investigation after receiving a tip that Anderson was selling fake vaccination cards out of his bar.

Undercover agents purchased 8 vaccination cards from Anderson for $20 each "on multiple occasions in April."

A laminating machine and 30 blank cards were confiscated from the bar. It's unclear how many fake cards sold to the public.

The Alcoholic Beverage Control agency released images of some of the confiscated cards.

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Alcoholic Beverage Control

"It is disheartening to have members in our community show flagrant disregard for public health in the midst of a pandemic," San Joaquin County District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar said in a statement on Wednesday. "Distributing, falsifying or purchasing fake COVID-19 vaccine cards is against the law and endangers yourself and those around you."

The FBI issued a stern warning in March for anyone caught selling fraudulent vaccination cards.

"By misrepresenting yourself as vaccinated when entering schools, mass transit, workplaces, gyms or places of worship you put yourself and others around you at risk of contracting COVID-19," the FBI said in a statement.

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Minneapolis police are refusing to enter the George Floyd Autonomous Zone even when responding to homicide calls.

Shootings are a nightly occurrence in the eight blocks surrounding 38th Street and Chicago Ave, known as "George Floyd Square," where Floyd died.

Multiple Black people have been killed in the zone since its creation last September.

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In one incidence of violence, a Black woman was pushed out of a window during a domestic dispute. Despite her severe injuries and profuse bleeding, police refused to accompany paramedics inside the zone.

"Is it possible to have her move at least a block away, maybe [to] 38 and 10th?" asked the police officer in audio of the 911 call.

The 911 dispatcher replied, "She is bleeding and cut everywhere, but we'll call her back and ask her to move a block away."

Another shooting resulted in the death of a pregnant Black woman late last month. Leneesha Columbus was shot in the zone. Despite her serious injury, police refused to go into the zone.

"We'll meet at 34th and Elliot, see if we can get the victim extracted to a closer location to us. And no lights or sirens, please," an officer told dispatch. When police finally extracted her from the zone, Columbus was pronounced dead.

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Imaz Wright and a second victim, both Black women, were shot during a gang-related incident on March 6th.

Police were told that the victims would be carried to them at the edge of the zone. Wright died before she could receive medical treatment.

Business owners and residents, many of them black, have pleaded with the police to enter the zone because they fear for their lives. The merchants feel abandoned by the police and the city.

"The city left me in danger," Alexander W, owner of the Smoke in The Pit restaurant, told the New York Post last month. "They locked us up in here and left us behind."

Some of the business owners created a GoFundMe page for donations to help them survive in the zone. So far, the account has raised over $13,000 of the stated $400,000 goal.

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Rapper YFN Lucci is among dozens of Bloods gang members named in a 75-page, 106-count racketeering indictment.

The indictment targeted leadership of the local faction of the notorious Bloods street gang, WSB-TV reports.

YFN Lucci, real name Rayshawn Bennett, 29, was charged in connection with a murder that occurred in Atlanta last year. He was arrested on January 13, 2021 after turning himself in to police. He is currently out of jail on $500,000 bond.

"This indictment is unprecedented. Period. In Georgia," Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis told Channel 2 Investigative reporter Mark Winne in an exclusive interview.

Prince Williams/ATLPics.net

Lucci's lawyer, Drew Findling, insisted his client is not a gang member.

"What he is is an internationally recognized musical artist that is a triple platinum winner, that has performed all over the United States and all over the world," Findling said.

However, Atlanta officials are not impressed by Lucci's rap career.

Prince Williams/ATLPics.net

"I think that [the indictment] sends a significant message, a profound message that regardless of your status that the City of Atlanta and Fulton County in partnership is coming after you if you violate the crimes in our county, in our city," said Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms named Bryant as the permanent police chief to lead Atlanta out of a deadly Covid crime wave.

Bottoms made the announcement during a press conference this morning to discuss Sunday's fatal shooting of 15-year-old Diamond Johnson.

An emotional Mayor Bottoms said she wished she could "wave a wand or make a speech" to make the crime wave stop.

"For the third time as mayor, I am standing here to talk about a bullet that took the life of a child in our city," Bottoms said.
 

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A 15-year-old girl is among 2 dead and 22 wounded in shootings around the Atlanta area over the weekend.

Diamond Johnson, 15, was fatally shot when she got into a fistfight with two groups of teenagers outside the Waffle House in the Glenwood Park shopping plaza on Saturday night.

About three hours later, 22-year-old Antonio Sykes was killed during a shooting outside Artisans Bar and Gallery on Peachtree Street.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced she will hold a press conference on Tuesday morning, May 4 at 10 a.m EST, to discuss Atlanta's deadly crime wave.

Atlanta has seen a 60% rise in homicides from last year when gang bangers moved to the wide open city from locked down blue areas.

"Just as we have overcome challenges in the past, Atlanta will get to the other side of this COVID crime wave and we will get this violence under control," Bottoms said during her state of the city address a few weeks ago.

Atlanta's spiking crime stats are a hindrance to Bottoms' reelection efforts this year.

Most recent crime stats show there have been 208 shootings and 40 homicides in Atlanta in 2021.

Atlanta's crime stats are on par with Chicago, Illinois -- earning Atlanta the nickname "Chiraq South."

Chiraq is a nickname for Chicago. It combines Chicago with Iraq, and is used to refer to a violent city that is similar to a war zone.

More Atlanta police officers have resigned in the last year than in years past. The lack of law enforcement presence on the streets has emboldened criminals to run amok.

"We are committed to putting an additional 250 new officers on the street during the next fiscal year," Bottoms said.

Crime Stoppers is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the fatal shooting of Diamond Johnson Saturday night. Callers can remain anonymous. 404-577-TIPS (8477).

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Boxing champion Felix Verdejo has been charged with the murder of his pregnant mistress, Keishia Marlen Rodriguez Ortiz, whose body was found floating in a lagoon.

Rodriguez Ortiz, 27, went missing Friday, April 30, after telling Verdejo she was pregnant with his baby.

According to published reports, she was last seen at the 27-year-old boxer's home where she allegedly went with a blood test that confirmed her pregnancy.

She was reported missing by her sister, Bereliz Nichole, who posted a message on Facebook asking for help finding Rodriguez Ortiz.

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Verdejo, a lightweight boxing champ who represented Puerto Rico in the 2012 Olympics, turned himself in to police on Monday.

He was charged with intentionally killing an unborn baby and kidnapping and carjacking resulting in death.

He was denied bond and remanded to prison. "This is a death penalty-eligible case," said Judge Camille Vélez.

Police say Verdejo arranged to meet with Rodriguez Ortiz on Friday morning, after she told him she was two months pregnant with his child "based on a pregnancy test."

"She was meeting him that morning. That was the last thing she told me when I spoke to her, that he wanted to see the pregnancy blood test," her mother, Keila Ortiz told Puerto Rican news outlets.

A witness who was with Verdejo at the time of the murder confirmed the details to investigators.

Verdejo contacted the unidentified witness and asked his help to terminate the pregnancy of the victim, according to a police report obtained by the NY Daily News.

Top Rank Inc / Getty Images

As Verdejo and Rodríguez Ortiz sat in his car talking, the boxer punched her in the face, knocking her out, then injected her with "a syringe filled with substances purchases from a drug point," according to the complaint.

Verdejo allegedly tied her arms and feet with wire, placed her in her own car, and drove it to a bridge over the San José lagoon. He then tied a concrete block to her body and tossed her into the water, according to the FBI.

He also shot her with a handgun after throwing her into the water, the FBI said. Her body was found floating in the lagoon on Sunday night.

The FBI used surveillance footage from the crime scene, cellphone data from towers near the area and interviewed witnesses, including the unidentified person who drove with Verdejo to the bridge before the killing.

Documents describe the "witness" as a male, however, Facebook sources claim the witness is Verdejo's wife, who is cooperating with the investigation in exchange for immunity from prosecution.

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Rapper Quando Rondo cheated death early Sunday when a bullet with his name on it struck an associate in the hand. Then injured man was treated for a gunshot wound at a hospital.

The incident happened outside a convenience store in Blackshear, Georgia, about 240 miles southeast of Atlanta.

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Rondo, born Tyquian Terrel Bowman, was traveling with a large entourage when they stopped at a convenience store in Blackshear. The group was in the parking lot of the convenience store when shots rang out.

Police believe the gunman, who opened fire from across the street, was aiming for the rapper who has a multi-million dollar bounty on his head.

Rondo, who turned 22 last month, was involved in a fistfight with Chicago rapper King Von when a member of his entourage, Lul Tim, shot Von outside an Atlanta nightclub in November.

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Von (pictured in August 2020) was pronounced dead at an Atlanta hospital. He was just 26.

Lul Tim was recently released from the Fulton County Jail on $100,000 bond, reportedly paid by Rondo.

Rather than lay low after Von's death, Rondo has repeatedly taunted Von's gang affiliates online.

But offline he surrounds himself with a large crew of hangers ons in the hopes that one of them will catch a bullet meant for him.

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Josh Duggar, 3rd from left, made his first court appearance on Friday morning following his arrest by federal agents in Arkansas on Thursday.

Duggar, 33, appeared before the judge at the Western District of Arkansas Federal Court from jail via Zoom on Friday, where he entered a plea of not guilty on all counts.

The father-of-7 declined to have his charges read in open court.

However, TMZ reports he was hit with charges of receiving and possessing child pornography, including images of minors below the age of 12.

According to the legal documents, the "19 Kids and Counting" star knowingly received child p0rn in mid-May 2019. The charges follow a federal raid by Homeland Security agents on his now-shuttered car dealership in 2019.

His next court hearing is set for next week to determine if Duggar will be granted bond. He will remain in custody until then.

If bond is granted, Duggar will be required to stay with a third-party custodian, and that person can't have unsupervised minors in the home.

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If convicted, Duggar faces up to 20 years in prison and fines up to $250,000.00 on each count.

This isn't Duggar's first brush with the law. Duggar's father, Jim Bob Duggar (pictured far right), reported then-14-year-old Josh to police after he allegedly molested 5 minors. It isn't clear if the victims included some of his 18 siblings.

His trial is scheduled for July.

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The 5 suspects who stole two of Lady Gaga's prized French bulldogs and shot her dogwalker pleaded not guilty in Los Angeles Superior Court on Thursday.

The liberal judge, Victoria Wilson, ordered no photographs of the five suspects in court to shield their identities.

Three of the suspects — James Jackson, 18; Jaylin White, 19; and Lafayette Whaley, 27 — were charged with attempted murder and armed robbery, according to the LAPD.

Two other suspects -- Harold White, the 40-year-old father of Jaylin White, and his girlfriend Jennifer McBride, 50, were charged with being accessories after the fact.

McBride was released on bail and ordered to remain on house arrest with an ankle monitor after her lawyer argued that she is a diabetic and did not have her insulin with her.

Jackson was held on $3 million bail, according to Dailymail.com. The others are being held without bail.

Felipe Ramales / Splash News

All five are charged with armed robbery and the theft of pop singer Lady Gaga's dogs on Feb. 24.

Gaga's father, Joe Germanotta, told Entertainment Tonight: "That's fabulous news. I hope the L.A. prosecutor doesn't let them go.

"It's taken a while and I'm proud of the police department out there for sticking with it. As I said, I just hope that the DA doesn't let them go now. I'm going to give my daughter a call. I'm sure she'll be happy."

BACKGRID

Gaga's dogs were returned to her 2 days after the incident when she offered a $500,000 reward for their safe return. Jennifer McBride contacted Gaga's people via email and claimed she found the dogs in an alley.

However, police reviewed surveillance video of the woman dropping the dogs off car the location where she claimed she found them. McBride turned the dogs over to the Los Angeles Police about 7 miles from where they were taken at gunpoint.

Felipe Ramales / Splash News

Gaga did not pay out the $500,000 reward because detectives were suspicious that McBride might be linked to the dognappers.

McBride is charged as an alleged accessory after the fact, as well as on one count of receiving stolen property.

According to Los Angeles Police Department officials, Harold White was also charged as an accessory after the fact and with a count of possession of a firearm, while James Jackson, Jaylin White and Lafayette Whaley have been have each been charged with one count of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit robbery and second-degree robbery.

Jackson also faces two further firearm charges, assault with a semiautomatic firearm and a felon carrying a concealed firearm in a vehicle, and White faces a count of assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury.

Detectives don't believe the suspects - who are all Los Angeles gang members - targeted Gaga's dogwalker Ryan Fischer. They believe greed and the high value of the dogs were the motivating factors.

Ryan was shot when he was walking Gaga's three dogs – Miss Asia, Koji, and Gustavo – and during the attack, Miss Asia ran away from the scene while Koji and Gustavo were captured by the robbers.

Miss Asia was later recovered and returned the same day, before Koji and Gustavo were found two days after the shooting.