YOUR DAILY WEEKLY READER: FSU woes, Nelson's big plan, Party Monster reborn



THE TALLAHASSEE POLICE DEPARTMENT RUINED A WOMAN’S LIFE IN ORDER TO SAVE AN FSU NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP. THIS IS TERRIBLE ALL AROUND: “Early on the morning of Dec. 7, 2012, a freshman at Florida State University reported that she had been raped by a stranger somewhere off campus after a night of drinking at a popular Tallahassee bar called Potbelly’s. As she gave her account to the police, several bruises began to appear, indicating recent trauma. Tests would later find semen on her underwear. For nearly a year, the events of that evening remained a well-kept secret until the woman’s allegations burst into the open, roiling the university and threatening a prized asset: Jameis Winston, one of the marquee names of college football. Three weeks after Mr. Winston was publicly identified as the suspect, the storm had passed. The local prosecutor announced that he lacked the evidence to charge Mr. Winston with rape. The quarterback would go on to win the Heisman Trophy and lead Florida State to the national championship. In his announcement, the prosecutor, William N. Meggs, acknowledged a number of shortcomings in the police investigation. In fact, an examination by The New York Times has found that there was virtually no investigation at all, either by the police or the university. The police did not follow the obvious leads that would have quickly identified the suspect as well as witnesses, one of whom videotaped part of the sexual encounter. After the accuser identified Mr. Winston as her assailant, the police did not even attempt to interview him for nearly two weeks and never obtained his DNA.” (via New York Times)



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IT’S THE NELSON MEDICAID WORKAROUND WE’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR!: “Expanding Medicaid to cover thousands of uninsured Floridians has mostly been ignored by Republicans during this year’s legislative session, but U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, a Democrat, is making a last-ditch effort to get it done. Medicaid is a joint state-federal program, though most of the expansion called for under the Affordable Care Act would be funded by Washington. Florida Republicans have balked, arguing that in the future, the burden on state funds would become too great. Politics might be an even bigger problem than money because Medicaid expansion is key to the success of President Barack Obama’s signature health law.  For months, Nelson has sought a way around the opposition while still meeting federal requirements. He thinks he has found it in a never-tried-before plan: Using healthcare money raised by counties to get the $3.5 billion needed to draw down $51 billion in federal funding. ‘If you really want to get it done, and if your reason for opposing it really was that you didn’t want to commit state tax dollars in the out years to expanding Medicaid, then this is the opportunity to do that,’ Nelson said Wednesday. His plan would require the 32 counties that boost their hospitals’ Medicaid funding with local money to instead use those funds to draw down the federal funds. All 67 Florida counties would benefit, even if they did not contribute.” (via Miami Herald) 


SO, ORANGE COUNTY HAS PRETTY DEEP LEGAL POCKETS, IT WOULD APPEAR. ALSO, THAT WAS A FAILED ATTEMPT AT APPEASEMENT, MR. BRUMMER: “A federal judge ruled against Orange County government lawyers today and allowed a lawsuit to proceed that alleges elected officials diluted Latino voting strength in its latest redistricting effort. ‘We're going to trial,’ said Juan Cartagena, president and general counsel of LatinoJustice PRLDEF, the civil rights group behind the lawsuit. ‘They can't stop us now. They tried, and it didn't work.’ A county spokeswoman said Orange officials do not comment on pending litigation. Instead of a jury, Chief Judge Anne C. Conway will preside over the voting rights trial set for May 12. The lawsuit alleges that while about a quarter of Orange's voting-age population is Hispanic, none of the county government's six districts are drawn as a majority-Latino seat. No Hispanics now sit on the elected board. Instead, a majority of commissioners, including Mayor Teresa Jacobs, adopted new district borders in the last redistricting effort that lowered the percent of Hispanics in District 3, where Latinos had won seats before. The lawsuit says that Orange leaders "cracked" that Latino population between District 3 and nearby District 4. (via Orlando Sentinel)


YOU GUYS, IT’S COOL TO PARTY AGAIN! ALSO, TO CHOP UP YOUR DRUG DEALER AND PUT HIM IN A BOX! WINNING: “Two hundred and forty miles west of Manhattan, in a stately red brick building perched atop a hill, the party monster waits. For 17 years, he’s been on a never-ending tour of New York state penitentiaries that’s taken him to the Elmira Correctional Facility where he waits, not so patiently, for that call from the parole board, the one that will give him his life back. The club kid fantasy was never meant to end this way: alone, in prison, a middle-aged murderer. ‘I feel sort of like Rip Van Winkle,’ Michael Alig tells me, likening himself to the fictional character who sleeps through the American Revolution. ‘I heard people don’t even go to parties to go to parties anymore. They go to parties to tweet. It’s kind of disgusting.’ Forty-seven-year-old Alig hasn’t actually been to a party in nearly two decades, but he isn’t that oblivious to what’s going on in the world. He watches Downton Abbey and reads New York Magazine, voraciously consuming whatever pop culture he can get his hands on, as if preparing for the moment he might be dropped back into society. He may have been locked up since the days of dial-up Internet and brick-sized cell phones, but thanks to the help of modern day acolytes and a few old friends still willing to do his bidding, Alig lives on blogs and Facebook. He tweets, too. But we’ll get to that.” (via The Daily Beast)


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