Christy Freeman, Maryland Mom Suspected in Deaths of Four Infants Denied Bail

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

OCEAN CITY, Md. —  A mother of four who is facing murder charges in the death of her new baby last week and is suspected in the killings of three infants whose remains were found on her property was denied bail Monday after pleading with the judge to free her on bond.

Meanwhile, investigators continued their search of the property, using a backhoe to search for shallow graves in the backyard. Although the search of the yard has not yet lead to the discovery of more bodies, police told FOX News Monday that cadaver dogs had indicated more remains could be found.

The bodies of four small infants were found at the home of Christy Freeman, 37, a woman who denied having been pregnant, even after she was taken to a hospital and doctors discovered a placenta and part of an umbilical cord, police said.

“They were not full-term children,” Barry Neeb, an Ocean City Police Department spokesman, said of all the babies.

[Freeman eventually told police that she had delivered a dead and deformed baby — claiming that she did not see any hands or feet — and that she had flushed the body down the toilet]      [Full Story]

STEBIC UPDATE:Exactly 3 Months Ago Lisa Stebic Disappeared, Family Wants Closure

(CBS) PLAINFIELD, Ill  — Exactly three months ago, April 30, 2007, Lisa Stebic a mother-of-two left home and never returned.

[..My words – Isn’t it strange that the police are wanting to talk again to the children but Craig Stebic’s attorney has denied permission.  I’m sure it would be hard for the children but it has now been 3 months and as upset as I’m sure they are I would think they would be stable enough to talk to the authorities especially if could mean it would help them find their mother or help them find out what happened rather than to leave them left wondering.  This leaves me thinking it is obvious the children know information that would incriminate Craig Stebic who is already now considered a “person of suspect”…… flagranny2]

Her family continues to press-on for answers.

The family of Lisa Stebic is erecting the billboards on Interstate 55 near State Route 30 and Canton Farm Road in the far southwest suburb. They hope the billboards will raise more attention about the case.

The billboard space has been donated by CBS Outdoor, the billboard division of CBS. [Full Story and related articles]

BREAKING NEWS:Missing Alabama Minister’s Wife Found Working at Fast-Food Restaurant in New York

Monday, July 30, 2007
By Sara Bonisteel

The wife of an Alabama minister missing for more than four months has been located by police unharmed and working under an alias at a fast-food restaurant in New York state, authorities said Monday.

Louisiana police located Mary Byrne Smith alive and well in New York state on Friday. The 30-year-old kindergarten teacher had been working under an assumed name at a fast-food restaurant.

“We know it’s her,” Bossier City Police Chief Mike Halphen said at a press conference Monday. “She did not want us to disclose the reasons why she left, and she did not want us to disclose where she is living.”

She does not face criminal charges, Halphen said. 

“People have their reasons for wanting to start a new life and that was her choosing,” Halphen said. “And again, we encouraged her very, very hard to contact her family and at least talk with her children and we believe that she at will.”

Police were able to trace Smith to New York after the Alabama Department of Education notified authorities that she had applied for a copy of her teaching certificate. She knew detectives were looking for her and expressed remorse, authorities said.   [Full Story]

Michael Vick’s Co-Defendant Pleads Guilty in Dogfighting Case

RICHMOND, Va.  As expected, this morning Tony Taylor, a co-defendant in the Michael Vick’s dogfighting case, pleaded guilty to 2 charges. 1) conspiracy to travel in interstate commerce in aid of unlawful activities, and 2) conspiring to sponsor a dog in an animal fighting venture. [Full Story]

[In my own words…Apparently this gives him the right to not having his sentence increased regardless of his testimony during the trial but does not assure him of no sentence at all.  He has not been granted or promised no prison term at all so he had nothing to lose by pleading guilty. 

Some are saying he has “flipped on Vick” or “his homies sellout” and now the NAACP gets involved.  Is this really a race issue?  The charges are about committing a crime and does not speak to a specific race. 

I believe innocent until proven guilty but there is NO WAY this a race issue but a case about “etreme animal abuse”.   flagranny2]

Michael Vick Update: Co-defendant doesn’t want trial

Saturday, July 28, 2007

I’m thinking that maybe prison alone might be too lenient.  Why not let the animals have their day and make it a law that anyone charged and convicted of cruelty to animals that part of their sentence mandates they are to spend X amount of time alone in a prison courtyard with X number of prison/police dogs that have been trained to attack. 

The amount of time and the number of dogs would be left to the courts to be based on the nature of the crime and maybe with the help of Animal Rights orgnizations. 

Of course we know this is not even a reality but somehow it would be nice if the animals could have their say in court.  It is beyond me to think that anyone could treat any animal with such cruelty let alone call it a sport.

Taylor to have plea agreement hearing on Monday

RICHMOND, Va. —  One of Michael Vick‘s co-defendants doesn’t want to wait for trial.

Tony Taylor, a witness in the case and facing charges of “conspiracy to travel in interstate commerce in aid of unlawful activities (“Travel Act”)”, and to “sponsor a dog in an animal fighting venture, in violation of federal law.”  

If convicted on the Travel Act portion of the conspiracy charge, Taylor, and each defendant, face a statutory maximum of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and full restitution. If convicted on the animal fighting venture portion of the conspiracy charge, each defendant faces one year in prison, a $100,000 fine, or both.

Taylor is expected to make a plea agreement at his hearing Monday morning. 

Other links related to the indictment here

Read full text of the federal indictment

At Least 4 Dead After Two TV News Choppers Collide, Crash While Covering Car Chase in Phoenix

Saturday, July 28, 2007

PHOENIX —  Federal investigators hope to determine why two news helicopters covering a police chase on live television collided and crashed to the ground, killing all four people on board.

Both helicopters from local TV stations went down in a grassy park in centralPhoenix and caught fire Friday afternoon. No one on the ground was hurt.

TV viewers did not witness the accident because cameras aboard both aircraft were pointed at the ground, but they saw video from one of the helicopters break up and begin to spin before the station abruptly switched to the studio.

Click here for more coverage from

Killed on board the KTVK helicopter were pilot Scott Bowerbank and photographer Jim Cox, the station reported. On board the KNXV aircraft were reporter-pilot Craig Smith and photographer Rick Krolak, that station said.

A Federal Aviation Administration investigator was at the crash scene by late Friday and National Transportation Safety Board investigators were expected to arrive Saturday.

The helicopters were covering the police pursuit of a work truck. Just before the collision, the driver had jumped out of the nearly disabled flatbed pickup and carjacked another truck. The man was later taken into custody by a SWAT team after barricading himself inside a house.

Just before the picture broke up, Smith said, “Oh geez!”

Police identified the suspect as Christopher J. Jones, 23, and said he was booked into jail late Friday night on two counts of vehicle theft, four counts of aggravated assault on a police officer and one count of resisting arrest with other charges expected to be filed later.

Earlier on Friday, Phoenix Police Chief Jack Harris suggested the suspect could “be held responsible for any of the deaths from this tragedy.”

The two helicopters came down on the lawn in front of a boarded-up church at the park. Firefighters swarmed to the area as thick black smoke rose from the scene.

Rick Gotchie, an air conditioning contractor, was working nearby when he noticed the helicopters overhead. He said they began circling closer as he continued watching, and one appeared to get too close to the other.

“I kept saying ‘Go lower, go lower,’ but he didn’t,” Gotchie said. “It was like a vacuum. They just got sucked into each other, and they both exploded and pieces were flying everywhere.”

He said he ran to the crash site, but “no one got out.”

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said the pilots of the five news helicopters and one police chopper over the chase were not talking to air traffic controllers at the time, which is normal.

“Typically air traffic controllers clear helicopters into an area where they can cover a chase like this,” Gregor said. “Once they are in the area, the pilots themselves are responsible for keeping themselves separated from other aircraft.”

Pilots generally use a dedicated radio frequency to talk to each other and maintain their positions, Gregor said.

“There is a high degree of coordination,” Gregor said. “To fly for a TV station you have to have a commercial rating, which means more (flight hours), more training.”

Gregor said the FAA has not had major safety problems with news chopper operations.

Keith McCutchen, a past president of the National Broadcast Pilots Association and a news pilot for 11 years in Indianapolis, said pilot awareness is vital while on the scene of a story because of the many distractions that could spell trouble.

“You are watching the scene. You have to bring your attention inside to look at the monitors to see what the audience is seeing so you can converse. But you’re also having to direct your attention to the other aircraft flying around you. You have to have your head on a swivel in those kinds of situations.”

Extended Recall List: Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce and Canned Meat Products plus 4 Varieties Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs

Friday, July 27, 2007

Their original list called for 10 products to be recalled now that they have expanded the list it has grown from 10 to 92….  That is a BIG jump. 

I’ve included the entire list here for those who wish to check it.  Hopefully you are all free of any of these listed and they have already been pulled from the stores in your areas.  I hope this helps. 

Castleberry’s Food Company is voluntarily expanding its recall originally announced on July 18 due to the risk of botulinum toxin, a bacterium which can cause botulism. The recall originally announced on July 18 affected only 10 products with ‘best by’ dates from APR30 2009 through MAY22 2009.

The extended recall now includes the following canned products in the following sizes with all ‘best by’ and code dates:

Austex Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 3030097101)
Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 3030099533)
Austex Beef Stew, 15 oz can (UPC 3030090815)
Austex Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030091015)
Austex Chili With Beans, 19 oz can (UPC 3030092519)
Austex Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030097715)
Austex Chili No Beans, 19 oz can (UPC 3030097719)
Best Yet Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 4217841082)
Best Yet Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4218740842)
Big Y Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 1889480424)
Big Y Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 1889480225)
Big Y Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 1889480425)
Black Rock Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001715)
Bloom Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 2543992448)
Bryan Hot Dog Chili Sauce With Beef, 10 oz can (UPC 5340030010)
Bryan Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 5340030110)
Bryan Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 5340030200)
Bryan Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 5340030205)
Bryan Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 5340035264)
Bunker Hill Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 7526604152)
Bunker Hill Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 7526604112)
Bunker Hill Spicier Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 7526604224)
Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 3030000101)
Castleberry’s Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 3030007101)
Castleberry’s Brunswick Stew Chicken & Beef, 15 oz can (UPC 3030000315)
Castleberry’s Barbecue Pork, 10 oz can (UPC 3030000402)
Castleberry’s Barbecue Pork, 14.5 oz can (UPC 3030000415)
Castleberry’s Barbecue Beef, 10 oz can (UPC 3030000602)
Castleberry’s Beef Stew, 15 oz can (UPC 3030000815)
Castleberry’s Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 3030000915)
Castleberry’s Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001015)
Castleberry’s Sausage Gravy, 10 oz can (UPC 3030005130)
Castleberry’s Creamed Chip Beef Gravy, 10 oz can (UPC 3030005150)
Castleberry’s Hot Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030007217)
Castleberry’s Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 3030007701)
Castleberry’s Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030007715)
Castleberry’s Georgia Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 3030000215)
Cattle Drive Beef Stew, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001530)
Cattle Drive Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001520)
Cattle Drive Chicken Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001525)
Cattle Drive Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030001515)
Firefighters Chicken Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7372500413)
Firefighters Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7372500411)
Firefighters Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7372500412)
Food Club Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 3680080204)
Food Club Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3680080404)
Food Club Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3680080504)
Food Lion Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 3582606911)
Goldstar Original Chili, 10oz can (UPC 2457500001)
Goldstar Chili, 15oz can (UPC 2457500005)
Goldstar Tex-Mex Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 2457500008)
Great Value Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 8113179994) – CANADA ONLY
Great Value Hot Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 8113179995) – CANADA ONLY
Kroger Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 1111083942)
Kroger Beef Stew, 15oz can (UPC 1111083928)
Kroger Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 1111083930)
Kroger Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 1111083908)
Lowes Foods Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4164301092)
Lowes Foods Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 4164301094)
Lowes Foods Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4164301097)
Meijer Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 4125085862)
Meijer Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4125095220)
Meijer Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4125095221)
Meijer Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 4125095229)
Morton House Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7526665829)
Morton House Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 7526665830)
Morton House Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7526665993)
Paramount Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 7526600510)
Paramount Chili for Hot Dogs, 15 oz can (UPC 7526600526)
Paramount Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7526600731)
Paramount Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 7526600732)
Piggly Wiggly Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4129037252)
Piggly Wiggly Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 4129037354)
Piggly Wiggly Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 4129037355)
Piggly Wiggly Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 4129037357)
Prudence Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 4114100015)
Southern Home Chili No Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 3825948713)
Southern Home Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 0788015340)
Southern Home Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 0788015341)
Southern Home Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (UPC 0788015359)
Steak n Shake Chili With Beans, 10 oz can (UPC 5184400120)
Thrifty Maid Hot Dog Chili Sauce, 10 oz can (UPC 2114021367)
Thrifty Maid Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (2114021370)
Thrifty Maid Corned Beef Hash, 15 oz can (2114021375)
Triple Bar Ranch Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030005801)
Triple Bar Ranch Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030005804)
Triple Bar Ranch Chili No Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 3030005805)
Value Time Beef and Chicken Chili With Beans, 15 oz can (UPC 1122542159)

In addition, the following canned Natural Balance brand pet food products are being recalled. These include:
Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs Irish Stew With Beef, Potatoes & Carrots,
15 oz can (UPC 2363359860)
Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs Chinese Take Out With Sauce With Vegetables and Chicken, 15 oz can (UPC 2363359861)
Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs HOBO Chili With Chicken & Pasta,
15 oz can (UPC 2363359863)
Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs Southern Style Dumplings With Chicken & Vegetables, 15 oz can (UPC 2363359862)

Missing Alabama Preacher’s Wife Sold Wedding Ring Day She Disappeared

Thursday, July 26, 2007
By Sara Bonisteel

[“At 11 o’clock that day, she told her companion that she was going to go to the concession stand and use the restroom, and it was the last time that Mrs. Smith was seen,” Halphen said…. Full Story ]

The wife of an Alabama minister missing since March sold her wedding ring at a pawnshop on the day she disappeared, police said Thursday. Mary Byrne “Beth” Smith, 30, is seen on surveillance video from a Bossier City, La., pawnshop hocking her wedding ring the morning she was reported missing, Bossier City police said.The store security camera shows Smith wearing a purple shirt and exiting the shop at 11:36 a.m. on March 24, the same day she disappeared from Living Proof Live, a women’s conference she was attending with her friend Jenny Gipson at the Bossier City CenturyTel Center.Click here to view photos.

The video reiterates investigators’ belief that Smith, the wife of Rev. Jason Smith of Summerdale, Ala., left on her own free will, Bossier Police Chief Mike Halphen said in a statement. Smith does not face criminal charges, but police would still like to locate her.

Body Found in Missing University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Student’s Car That Was Pulled From River

Friday, July 27, 2007

GREEN BAY, Wis. —  A car that a college student was driving before she vanished two weeks ago was pulled from a river near downtown Green Bay on Thursday, and a woman’s body was in it, authorities said.

An autopsy will be conducted Friday to identify the body and determine a cause of death, Green Bay Police Chief Jim Arts said.

Brown County Medical Examiner Al Klimek said preliminary indications suggest an accidental death with no sign of foul play. The body’s condition was “consistent with being submerged for 13 days,” he said.

Click here to view a video report from

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay student Mahalia Xiong, 21, disappeared early July 13 after a night out with friends at a bowling alley and a sports bar.

Xiong was last seen about 2 a.m. getting into a white 1996 four-door Mercury Sable and driving off alone, authorities said.

An officer spotted tire tracks headed toward the Fox River about 8 a.m. Thursday, leading divers to find the car in 25 feet of water, police said.

Cat Has Skills Of Grim Reaper

Cat Appears To Predict Death In Patients

POSTED: 8:41 am EDT July 26, 2007

PROVIDENCE, R.I.Oscar the cat seems to have an uncanny knack for predicting when nursing home patients are going to die: He curls up next to them during their final hours.

Click here for more pictures of Oscar

 [Oscar is better at predicting death than the people who work there, said Dr. Joan Teno of Brown University, who treats patients at the nursing home and is an expert on care for the terminally ill.

She was convinced of Oscar’s talent when he made his 13th correct call. While observing one patient, Teno said, she noticed the woman wasn’t eating, was breathing with difficulty and that her legs had a bluish tinge, signs that often mean death is near.

Oscar wouldn’t stay inside the room, though, so Teno thought his streak was broken.  Instead……]    Full Story