JUDGE REFUSES TO TOSS CUBA GOODING JR. GROPING CASE
NEW YORK (AP) – A New York City judge has rejected actor Cuba Gooding Jr.’s request to have his groping case thrown out. Judge Phyllis Chu said in a written ruling this week that conflicting accounts of the accusations against Gooding should be resolved at a trial. The Oscar-winning “Jerry Maguire” star is accused of squeezing a woman’s breast without her consent at Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge near Times Square on June 9. The defense had filed papers saying the misdemeanor forcible touching case should be dismissed based on accounts of two witnesses who say it never happened. The papers also say video from the bar back up that claim. Gooding attorney Mark Heller says in a statement that he expects his client to be exonerated.
JURY TO DELIBERATE IN CASE WHERE ASHTON KUTCHER TESTIFIED
LOS ANGELES (AP) – A jury in Los Angeles has received the case of a man charged with fatally stabbing two women in their Southern California homes and attempting to kill a third. Jurors were given the case of 43-year-old Michael Gargiulo yesterday – and are to begin deliberating Monday. During the prosecution’s rebuttal to the defense’s closing argument, a deputy district attorney said the defendant had “the mind of a serial killer.” He also dismissed a defense argument that another man was responsible for the death of a friend of Ashton Kutcher. The actor testified at the trial in May, in the early stages of the proceedings.
VANESSA CARLTON TAKES ON ROLE OF CAROLE KING
NEW YORK (AP) – Over the years, the Broadway show about singer-songwriter Carole King has starred powerful singers in the title role. But until now it hasn’t had a singer-songwriter. Vanessa Carlton has stepped into the role of the legendary King without much musical theater experience. But she does have lots of experience as a young female songwriter trying to discover her own voice. Carlton, who has had ups and downs since her breakout 2002 single, “A Thousand Miles,” read the script for “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical” and cried. Then she thought of her own life. She says the role offered something to which she would be able to “bring some of my own essence” the project.
PRESIDENT TRUMP HINTS STRONGLY AT FORMER GOVERNOR, “APPRENTICE” CONTESTANT BLAGOJEVICH
CHICAGO (AP) – President Donald Trump has sent his clearest signal yet that he may be about to sign commutation papers freeing former Illinois governor and one-time “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant Rod Blagojevich from federal prison in Colorado. The 62-year-old Democrat is seven years into a lengthy sentence for extortion, bribery and other wide-ranging political corruption. Speaking with reporters on Air Force One this week, Trump said he thought Blagojevich was “treated unbelievably unfairly” and that he is “thinking about commuting his sentence very strongly.” Yesterday, Trump repeated those sentiments on Twitter.
“STAR WARS” THEME PARK BOOSTING EMPLOYMENT IN FLORIDA
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is creating 1,700 fulltime jobs at Walt Disney World. Disney officials say an additional 5,500 short-term jobs were created in construction, trade and artisan positions. The 14-acre land at Disney World opens at the end of the month. The land cost $1 billion and is the largest single-themed land created at a Disney park. An identical park opened earlier this summer at Disneyland in California.
MIAMI DOLPHINS RECEIVER SPEAKS ABOUT TEAM OWNER’S SUPPORT FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) – Miami Dolphins receiver Kenny Stills says he has no hard feelings toward Stephen Ross over the team owner’s support for Donald Trump. Stills says his objections to a fundraiser for the president aren’t political. Stills says that there is a contradiction in Ross showing support both for racial equality – and for Trump. Ross is holding a fundraiser for Trump tonight. Stills says he has trouble reconciling that with Ross’ being the founder of RISE, which is a nonprofit that strives to end racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations.