Hackers Run Wild as the Internet Struggles to Lock Them Out This Holiday Season

Categories: Cover Story

Andrew J. Nilsen
It hasn't been a very happy holiday season for Sony Pictures, which was hacked recently and had sensitive internal files compromised.

Five movies -- four of them unreleased -- were leaked along with 11 terabytes of personal data, including executive salaries, release schedules, employee criminal background checks, and passwords (kept securely in a directory titled "passwords"). The company's entire network had to be shut down and employees couldn't even use their computers or laptops for more than a week.

The irony of the Sony Pictures situation is that their leaky security was exposed three years ago by two Arizona men in concert with LulzSec leader-turned-stoolie Sabu, a.k.a. Hector Xavier Monsegur. The group released names, e-mails, and passwords of 75,000 people.

Raynaldo Rivera, 20, and Cody Kretsinger, 24, were convicted last year, sent to prison for 12 months, and ordered to pay $605,663.67 in restitution to cover Sony's associated costs, including a full security overhaul that doesn't appear worth the money spent.

The Sony Pictures mishap is only the latest in a disquieting trend of high-profile computer incursions from Home Depot and Target to J.P. Morgan Chase to Apple's iCloud. Nearly everywhere we turn, our personal information, photos, and credit card information are getting compromised. In September, Home Depot revealed that a cyber attack in April had exposed more than 50 million customer credit cards and e-mail addresses.

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Phoenix PD Identifies Officer Who Fatally Shot Rumain Brisbon

Categories: News

Dennis Gilman
The Phoenix Police Department has identified the police officer who fatally shot 34-year-old Rumain Brisbon at an apartment complex last week.

Phoenix PD identified the officer as Mark Rine, a 7-year veteran of the department.

"He has been reassigned to a non-enforcement duty pending the outcome of the investigation," Phoenix Police Sergeant Trent Crump says in a statement.

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Jan Brewer's Driver's License Ban Running on Fumes

Categories: News

André Karwath
Governor Jan Brewer's executive order that prevents certain immigrants from getting driver's licenses is running on fumes after a series of court losses.

A federal appellate court decision earlier this year called for a temporary end to Brewer's order, and after a series of appeals by the Brewer administration, immigrants granted deferred action by the Obama Administration could get Arizona driver's licenses as early as a week from now.

"They're doing whatever they can to delay the implementation," ACLU of Arizona executive director Alessandra Soler tells New Times.

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Native Americans Calling on Arizona Cardinals to Make Policy Against Headdresses, Redface

Categories: Cardinals, News

Arizona to Rally Against Native Mascots
As another NFL team with a Native American-inspired mascot came to town last weekend, some Native American groups banded together to protest the Kansas City Chiefs.

Although the groups have gotten a lot of attention for their protests of a certain Washington NFL team's name, they're also protesting what they perceive to be a mockery of Native American culture, like Chiefs fans showing up wearing red face paint or fake headdresses.

"I saw numerous people arriving at the stadium wearing fake headdresses," says Nicholet Deschine, a member of Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry. "Arizona is one of three states to have the largest share of American Indian population and it's appalling that this type of insensitive apparel is allowed into Arizona Cardinals games at the University of Phoenix Stadium."

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Maricopa County Animal Control's Former Spokesman Accused of Stalking Employees

Categories: News

A former spokesman for Maricopa County Animal Care and Control was arrested on charges including stalking for harassing his former co-workers, according to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

The Sheriff's Office says Audie Greybear posed as his former co-workers on Craigslist, leading to the employees receiving sexually explicit text messages and e-mails to their work phones and e-mail accounts.

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Viral Video of Alleged Police Brutality in Mesa Doesn't Show Entire Encounter

Luis Paul Puleo Santiago/Facebook
A viral video of alleged police brutality by a Mesa police officer doesn't show the entire encounter between the officer and a teenage girl.

The video, which has been shared on Facebook more than 120,000 times at the time of this post, appears to show the officer throwing a blow at the girl before taking her to the ground.

"Just watched mesa PD punch a 15 year old girl in the face 2 times she was a runaway is this rely how we treat emotionally unstable teens?" the owner of the video posted on Facebook. "The cops wanted to delete this off my phone share the fuck out of this shit."

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Phoenix PD's Killing of Rumain Brisbon Sparking More Protests

Categories: News

Dennis Gilman
A protester holding a sign during a demonstration against police brutality on Friday.
Protests are continuing to take place over the fatal shooting of 34-year-old Rumain Brisbon by a Phoenix police officer last week.

Brisbon was fatally shot Tuesday night at an apartment complex after a scuffle with a Phoenix police officer who was investigating a drug-dealing complaint. Police say the officer thought Brisbon was reaching for a gun in his pocket, although he turned out to be unarmed.

The third protest of the shooting is being organized for tonight, as activists and Brisbon's family attempt to call on the police department for information about the yet-unnamed officer.

"We're really going to demand justice for Rumain Brisbon," Reverend Jarrett Maupin tells New Times. "I spoke two days ago to his 9 year-old daughter, and she said, 'Reverend Maupin, I want to know who killed my daddy.'"

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Video: Police Killings Protested in Phoenix

Categories: News

Police killings across the country sparked a large protest at First Friday in Phoenix this weekend.

With police in riot gear at the ready, the demonstrators protested against the killing of Michael Brown in Missouri, the killing of Eric Garner in New York, and last week's killing of Rumain Brisbon by Phoenix police.

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10 Most Stereotypical Christmas Decorations in Phoenix

Categories: List This

Thanksgiving has passed, which means the Christmas decorations have started to go up.

In Phoenix, Christmas decorations are a little different than the rest of the country, so we present the 10 most stereotypical pieces of Phoenix Christmas decor:

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Joe Arpaio's "Mickey Cam" Spits in Face of Mauled Little Boy

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Like you needed additional evidence that we live in a sick society, we now have "Mickey cam," a 24-7 camera fixed on a vicious pit bull that mauled the face of a little boy, leaving him with permanent, painful injuries.

Who's responsible for this obscenity? Who else? Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who this week, came one step closer to being held in criminal contempt by federal Judge G. Murray Snow in the racial-profiling case Melendres v. Arpaio.

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Russell Pearce and the AZ GOP's Jerry Springer-Style Family Feud

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What would I do without Republicans in this state? Their Jerry Springer-esque antics are a hoot, and would make for an excellent reality show, which I propose calling, with a hat tip to Snoop Dogg, "Deez Nutz."

Thursday night, the Maricopa County Republicans' Executive Guidance Committee -- under the leadership of Chief Grand Inquisitor and outgoing county party chair A.J. LaFaro -- met to vote on a censure of eight Republican precinct committee persons, because they allegedly supported Democrats in one way or another during the general election.

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Arizona's the Most Corrupt State in America, According to Survey

Categories: News

Matthew Hendley
Arizona's home to the most political corruption in America.

That's according to a survey of reporters nationwide, done by researchers at Harvard University's Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics.

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Raw Story Helps Anti-Semite's AIDS/Gay Slurs Go "Viral"

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I'm concerned about hate-filled attacks on all minority populations, regardless of what group is on the receiving end.

Yet I'm puzzled at the disparate reactions to two targets of wacko Tempe Pastor Steven Anderson's hate-filled sermons: Jews and gays.

Recently, the Anti-Defamation League of Arizona alerted folks that Anderson had added Jews to the long list of people he hates on.

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Maricopa County Mugshots of the Week: Confusing Tattoos

At the end of the week, we bring you a roundup of visitors to the desert's own Fourth Avenue Jail. To be considered for our Maricopa County mugshots of the week, get arrested, strike a pose, and we'll take care of the rest.

This week, most of our inmates have confusing tattoos. Enjoy.

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Looks Like Arpaio Will Need That Lawyer: Sheriff May Face Civil and Criminal Contempt Charges

Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons

Updated 6 p.m.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio may face civil and even criminal contempt charges stemming from his office's failure to comply with a court order issued in the Melendres civil rights case. In that case, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office was found to have illegally racially profiled Latinos in its attempts to enforce immigration law.

The case, which was scheduled for an evidentiary hearing today, was temporarily put on hold as Judge G. Murray Snow considers possible contempt violations on the part of Arpaio and the MCSO.

In front of the crowded courtroom, Snow addressed the sheriff and the issues at hand immediately. "I do acknowledge here the presence of the Sheriff," he said. "I appreciate him being here. I have some deep concerns and I'm glad he's here to hear them. I believe there have been some serious violations that require this court to take action."

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Owner of Motorcycle Maker Sucker Punch Sallys Accused of Fraud

Gerie Leigh Clayton, the owner of Scottsdale-based custom motorcycle maker Sucker Punch Sallys, has been arrested on felony theft charges.

Scottsdale police say Clayton, 64, defrauded at least two people by taking money for custom bikes that were never made.

"They had placed orders from out of state or out of the country and made significant deposits to have the work done, and these custom motorcycles weren't put together and weren't shipped out," Scottsdale Police Officer Kevin Watts tells New Times.

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Latino Voters Want a President Who Will Renew Obama's Immigration Order, Poll Shows

Categories: Poll of the Day

Pete Souza/White House
If a 2016 presidential candidate wants the Latino vote, he or she will have to support President Obama's executive order on immigration.

That's according to a nationwide poll released by several Latino voter-outreach groups, which asked Latino voters whether they would support Hillary Clinton if she pledged to continue Obama's executive action on immigration and whether they would support her if she pledged not to continue it.

That single issue led to a nearly 50-point swing -- 85 percent said they likely would pick Clinton if she pledged to continue the immigration actions, and 37 percent said they probably would not pick Clinton if she pledged not to continue it.

"This is something that is directly in the lap of the president, because it is a presidential executive action, and so we know that each of the candidates who wants to court the Latino vote in 21016 will have to give an answer to whether or not they will let this policy be renewed," says Matt Barretto, a co-founder of Latino Decisions.

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Joe Arpaio's Deputy Misled Grand Jury in Green Acre Dog Deaths, Says Flake Lawyer

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Dennis Wilenchik, attorney for the son and daughter-in-law of U.S. Senator Jeff Flake, has a message for the lynch mob in the Green Acre Dog Boarding case: cut down the ropes.

Late Tuesday, Wilenchik, aided by his son and fellow lawyer Jack, hit the court with three motions rebutting the animal cruelty charges against his clients Austin and Logan Flake in the June deaths of 21 dogs at the Gilbert facility: one to remand the case back to the grand jury, one to sever the Flakes' case from the owners of the business, and a third to dismiss some of the charges outright.

The most serious allegations are in the motion to remand, which charges that MCSO Detective Marie Trombi and the prosecution may have "intentionally misdirected the jury and committed perjury" concerning a report from SRP showing a severe dip in electrical usage the night most of the dogs died.

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Phoenix Police Officer Fatally Shoots Unarmed Man During Scuffle at Apartment Complex

Categories: News

Yumi Kimura
An unarmed 34-year-old Phoenix resident was fatally shot by a Phoenix police officer Tuesday night after a scuffle between the two men at an apartment complex.

The officer, whose name hasn't been released, attempted to detain Rumain Brisbon as part of a drug-dealing investigation at the apartment complex, near Interstate 17 and Greenway Road, according to Phoenix Police Sergeant Trent Crump. Brisbon tried to run from the officer, and when the officer caught up, the two got into a physical struggle.

At one point, Brisbon reached into a pants pocket with his hand, and the officer grabbed on to Brisbon's hand, to prevent him from pulling out what the officer thought was a gun, Crump says.

"When our officer lost his grip on the suspect's hand -- in close quarters with the suspect -- our officer fired two rounds, striking the suspect in the torso with both rounds, ending the confrontation with the individual," Crump says.

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Failing Charter Schools: Victims of Unfair Regulation or Blights on Public Education?

Twenty years ago, Arizona became the second state in the nation to allow charter schools to operate in the public education system. In honor of the anniversary, New Times is taking a hard look at charters in Arizona. Earlier stories in this series examined how charter schools often fail kids with special needs and serve a disproportionate number of kids from wealthy white families. Today: how to handle failing charter schools.

Pablo Iglesias
Jeffrey Blay Jr. isn't a typical child. He is socially awkward, obsessive-compulsive, and academically brilliant.

Jeffrey attended elementary school in a California suburb. He couldn't stay in his seat. He would walk around, straighten out books, and sharpen pencils as his teachers explained the day's lesson. Not all teachers understood how Jeffrey's mind worked, and sometimes he was punished for not following classroom rules.

At just under 5 feet tall, the 12-year-old has blond hair and blue eyes -- and a diagnosis of autism.

At the end of fifth grade, his parents, Jeffrey Sr. and Jana Blay, opted out of sending their son to a junior high school in California. Instead, they moved to Arizona, where they home-schooled Jeffrey for a year.

And then they stumbled upon a school that seemed as if it might finally meet their son's needs: Jefferson Academy of Advanced Learning in Show Low, a small community about a three-hour drive northeast of Phoenix.

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