National Roundup

Massachusetts
DA: 63-year-old woman dies ­trying to break up family fight

METHUEN, Mass. (AP) - Authorities say a Massachusetts woman trying to break up a family fight suffered an undisclosed medical emergency and died.

The Essex district attorney's office says police responded to a Methuen home at about 10 p.m. Sunday for reports of a fight and an unresponsive woman.

Authorities say 63-year-old Martina Gomez "appeared to suffer from medical distress" during the confrontation.

She was pronounced dead at Lawrence General Hospital around 11:20 p.m.

The district attorney says 23-year-old Modesta Gomez was charged with assault and battery on a person over 60. It could not immediately be determined if she has a lawyer.

An autopsy is scheduled to determine the cause and manner of Martina Gomez's death.

New York
Call him Judge Jerry: Jerry Springer is ­getting court show

NEW YORK (AP) - Hopefully there won't be any chairs in this courtroom.

Talk show host Jerry Springer is getting a new TV role as "Judge Jerry," where he'll hear testimony and render verdicts before a studio audience. NBC Universal Television Distribution announced the half-hour court program Monday that will debut in national syndication in the fall of 2019.

The 74-year-old TV host is best known for "The Jerry Springer Show," in which guests loudly, and at times violently, meted out their own brand of justice over 27 seasons. Springer began his career as a lawyer in Cincinnati.

In a statement, Springer says he'll be called "honorable" for this first time in his life. He says his career is "coming full circle."

"Judge Jerry" will be taped in Connecticut.

Louisiana
Big Freedia sues choreographer for dance ­routines

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The New Orleans artist known as Big Freedia has sued a former choreographer, seeking a declaration of ownership for choreography and music from the time they worked together.

The lawsuit by Freddie Ross Jr. was filed in federal court last week against Wilberto Dejarnetti, a character on Freedia's reality television show "Queen of Bounce" on Fuse, NOLA.com/ Times-Picayune reported.

The lawsuit states Dejarnetti worked with Big Freedia and her dance team from 2014 to 2017 on routines for the songs "Just Be Free Intro," "NO Bounce," "Explode," "Shake Session Medley," "Dangerous," "Best Beeleevah" and "Drop."

The lawsuit says Big Freedia ended the relationship last year because "Dejarnetti's behavior was frequently erratic, and his temperamental nature caused turmoil and strife" within Ross's team.

The lawsuit says Dejarnetti has sought continued royalties of $500 per month for dance routines that Freedia's lawyers say were "largely based on and derivative of traditional 'bounce' dance movements and other routines Mr. Ross and his dancers had been employing for years."

The lawsuit also says Dejarnetti has already been paid for his services. The newspaper was unable to reach Dejarnetti for comment.

The lawsuit said Dejarnetti has also claimed to have co-written some songs. Freedia's lawyers say while Dejarnetti may have been present during the recording, he had no "copyrightable" role in the music.

The lawsuits states Big Freedia tried to reach a resolution with Dejarnetti, but had run out of options for amicable resolution.

In addition to an ownership declaration, the lawsuit seeks unspecified monetary damages.

Alabama
Police suggest black man shouldn't have held his gun

HOOVER, Ala. (AP) - Police in Alabama promised transparency Monday after a weekend of protests in response to an officer fatally shooting a black man who pulled out his legally permitted weapon following gunfire at a shopping mall.

Hoover Police initially described the officer as "heroic" for bringing down Emantic "EJ" Bradford Jr. after two people were wounded at the Riverchase Galleria mall outside Birmingham Thanksgiving night. Then they retracted the statement, saying it's "unlikely" Bradford was involved.

Bradford's father said his son was a 21-year-old Army veteran with a permit to carry a weapon. The statement police released early Monday suggested Bradford shouldn't have pulled it out.

"We can say with certainty Mr. Bradford brandished a gun during the seconds following the gunshots, which instantly heightened the sense of threat to approaching police officers responding to the chaotic scene," the statement from the city of Hoover and its police department says.

"We extend sympathy to the family of Emantic J. Bradford of Hueytown, who was shot and killed during Hoover Police efforts to secure the scene in the seconds following the original altercation and shooting. The loss of human life is a tragedy under any circumstances," the statement said.

Bradford's parents appeared on CNN later Monday morning, saying police still haven't spoken with them. They want to see body-camera video, and they've hired a civil rights attorney, Ben Crump, to help them.

"We don't trust the police department because they've already lied to them. They released his picture all over the world saying he was the shooter and the police officer was a hero," Crump said.

Crump said several witnesses have reached out to the family saying the officer shot Bradford "within milliseconds," without saying a word to him.

"It doesn't matter if you're a good guy with a gun, if you're black the police shoot and kill you and ask questions later," Crump said.

The Monday police statement says "body camera video and other available video was immediately turned over to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department as part of the investigation. Now, all evidence has been handed over to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) to lead the investigation. Release of any video will be done as ALEA deems appropriate during the investigation."

The police also expressed sympathy for the family of the 18-year-old man and the 12-year-old girl who were wounded in the initial shooting and said they are "pursuing the initial shooter who still remains at large."

Published: Tue, Nov 27, 2018

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