Two USC athletic department employees a high-ranking administrator and a legendary head coach were fired Tuesday after being indicted in federal court in Massachusetts for their alleged roles in a racketeering conspiracy that helped students get into elite colleges and universities by falsely designating them as recruited athletes.Senior associate athletic director Donna Heinel and mens and womens water polo coach Jovan Vavic were fired after allegedly receiving bribes totaling more than $1.3 million and $250,000, respectively, to help parents take advantage of the relaxed admissions standards for athletes at USC even though their children were not legitimately being recruited as athletes.Former USC womens soccer coach Ali Khosroshahin, who was fired in 2013, and his former assistant coach, Laura Janke, who left the school in 2014, were also named in the indictment for allegedly fabricating athlete profiles for the prospective students.,Khosroshahin and Janke allegedly received payments totaling nearly $350,000 sent to their private soccer club.Federal prosecutors on Tuesday indicted dozens of people including UCLA mens soccer coach Jorge Salcedo and actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin in connection with an elaborate scheme aimed at getting students into elite colleges.The scheme centered around the owner of a for-profit Newport Beach college admissions company that wealthy parents allegedly paid to help their children cheat on college entrance exams and falsify athletic records of students to enable them to secure admission to elite schools for which they otherwise might not qualify, according to court records.We are aware of the ongoing wide-ranging criminal investigation involving universities nationwide, including USC, the university said in a statement.,Donna Heinel and Jovan Vavic have been terminated and the university will take additional employment actions as appropriate.USC is in the process of identifying any funds received by the university in connection with this alleged scheme.,Additionally, the university is reviewing its admissions processes broadly to ensure that such actions do not occur going forward.The other athletic departments named in the alleged racketeering conspiracy are Yale, Georgetown, Wake Forest, Stanford, Texas and the University of San Diego.,The indictment states that, by accepting bribes to falsely designate students as recruited athletes, the coaches and administrators were in the violation of the duty of honest services owed to their employers, thereby facilitating the childrens admissions to the universities.Heinel was USC athletics chief administrative officer and senior woman administrator.Vavic led the Trojans water polo teams to a combined 16 national championships and is a 15-time national coach of the year.Vavic was arrested without incident in Hawaii.
William Rick Singer touted his charity as a way to open doors for disadvantaged students who grew up surrounded by gang violence.The Key Worldwide Foundations website says it funds dental care for needy Cambodians, after-school programs for children in 20 cities across the United States and life coaching to underprivileged girls in Los Angeles.But federal tax records reviewed by The Times showed the great majority of the charitys grants actually went to elite universities, including USC, Yale and New York University.,Fifty people have been charged in the probe.In 2016, the most recent year for which the records are available, Singers foundation gave $252,500 to the University of Texas Athletics, $50,000 to the USC Womens Athletics Board, $25,000 to the USC soccer program and $83,181 to NYU Athletics, the tax documents show.,In 2015, the nonprofit gave $250,000 to athletic programs at USC, including its water polo and womens volleyball programs, $294,000 to the University of Texas Athletics, $250,000 to Yale Summer Time Sports and $175,000 to Chapman University.That year, Friends of Cambodia received $19,200.,We take this matter very seriously and intend to review this relationship in depth to assure ourselves that our principles have not in any way been compromised.In 2014, USC sports programs received $225,000, while NYU Athletics received $203,998, the tax records show.,He cooperated with authorities in the investigation and pleaded guilty to the charges in Boston on Tuesday afternoon, according to court records.Prosecutors allege that well-to-do parents paid Singer to help their children cheat on college entrance exams and to falsify athletic records to enable them to gain admission to at least eight schools, a list that also includes UCLA, Stanford and Georgetown.Not all the schools named in the case received donations, according to the tax records.Federal law enforcement began the investigation, dubbed Operation Varsity Blues, in May, based on a tip from a confidential source who was being interviewed as part of a separate investigation, said FBI Special Agent Joseph Bonavolonta.The government alleges that Singer instructed parents to donate funds to the charity as part of the scheme.
Happy Place Sports Bar, an Orange County bar shuttered in October after a series of shootings, was the hub for a major Central Florida drug trafficking organization, local and federal authorities said Friday.,Sheriff John Mina, along with members of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation, announced the dismantling of the organization, which resulted in the arrests of 16 people and confiscation of dozens of guns and $180,000 in cash.,The Sheriff’s Office enlisted the help of other agencies when it realized the organization was behind a series of violent crimes dating to 2015, according to Director Ron Stucker of the MBI, a task force targeting vice and organized crime in Orange and Osceola counties.,Stucker said the organization had been distributing between one and two kilograms of cocaine and heroin per week on average in Central Florida.,Mina said members of the organizations played a role in numerous shootings in Orange County, including two at Happy Place Sports Bar in July and October.
FAIRFIELD — Police continued their investigation Wednesday into a deadly crash early Tuesday that left a 62-year-old man dead and two others with what police have described as serious injuries.,A person passing the scene stopped and assisted the deputy and Fairfield police officers as they tried to extinguish the vehicle fire and remove two occupants from the car.,A man who was the passenger in the car died from injuries he received during this collision, Fairfield police report.,The Fairfield Police Department’s Major Accident Investigations Team responded and investigated the crash.,Anyone with information about the hit-and-run case is asked to call Officer Ryann Fuentes or the Fairfield Police Traffic Unit at 428-7300.
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is being charged with two counts of soliciting prostitution in Florida, a result of a multi-agency investigation into an alleged human trafficking ring, police said Friday.,Kraft, 77, is one of 25 individuals being charged in Jupiter with soliciting prostitution in connection with the law enforcement sting, police said.,“Our concern in this investigation centers around the possibility of victims of human trafficking, the appearance maybe of that,” Jupiter Police Chief Daniel J. Kerr said Friday during a press conference.,At a Tuesday press conference, Martin County Sheriff William Snyder said the overall investigation began last July, when detectives responded to a complaint from the county’s health department reporting signs of potential human trafficking at a local massage parlor.,Because Kraft is not a resident of the state, an arrest warrant will be issued for him in Florida related to the charges, police said.
Connie Rice said the stops alone are dangerous and damaging.,According to a new analysis, the LAPD is pulling over a lot more drivers these says — and 90 percent of them are black or Latino, says the LA Times.,And in South LA where blacks are about 31 percent of the population they account for 65 percent of all stops.,LAPD Chief Michel Moore says the division’s focus on South LA is due to high crime rates in the area and he pointed to the fact that violent crime citywide decreased last year for the first time in five years.,Rice said she planned to sit down the LAPD to try to figure out why there is such a large discrepancy in the numbers of stops and better ways to fight crime.
WINTER PARK, Fla. - Two days after a quiet neighborhood in Winter Park was stunned by a man's suspicious death, police identified the man as 65-year-old Michael Redlick.,First responders were called to a home along Temple Drive in Winter Park around 9:30 a.m Saturday where they found Redlick's body.,Police have remained tight-lipped about the circumstances surround Redlick's death, saying those details are still under investigation.,What started as a medical emergency turned into a suspicious death investigation, police said.,Winter Park police investigated the home for about 10 hours Saturday.
He had served with the Birmingham Police Department since 2011, where he has worked various assignments including West Precinct, HICOPP and Youth Services as a school resource officer.,End of Watch: Remembering 51 Birmingham police officers killed in the line of duty Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin called Carter a “true public servant” who will be honored.,"As this investigation continues, I ask that everyone pause and reflect on how our Birmingham police officers go out everyday to protect our community,'' Woodfin said.,This is a time of mourning for our city, but please know our police officers are dedicated to justice and continued service for the people of Birmingham.”,Birmingham City Councilman Hunter Williams, public safety chairman, issued this statement: “On behalf of the Birmingham City Council, Please join me in lifting up our thoughts and prayers for the families of the officers shot this morning, as well as the men and women of Birmingham Police Department.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — An internal investigation shows that an inmate at a Florida jail was allowed to eat Chinese takeout and sit in a guard station after hours in exchange for helping guards with financial and legal matters.,The investigation by the Orange County Corrections Department found that Robert Potchen gave guards advice on their taxes, student loans and mortgages in exchange for special privileges like accessing the Internet.,Potchen had been serving a 15 year prison sentence for pulling a gun on his wife, but he was in the jail as he awaited a hearing on a probation violation.,The Orlando Sentinel reports that another inmate told investigators that Potchen had a romantic relationship with a female guard.,The five guards involved have resigned or retired from their posts.