Manhattan DA expected to charge Trumps company and CFO Thursday: Sources

The charges are believed to involve fringe benefits for employees, sources said.

The Trump Organization and its longtime chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, are expected to face charges of tax fraud, the sources said. The charges would be the first brought by prosecutors following their two-year investigation of the former president and his company.

A Trump Organization spokesperson declined to comment, as did a spokesperson for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

The expected charges, which have not been publicly disclosed, are believed to involve fringe benefits given to employees, including Weisselberg, the sources said. Investigators, who fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court for access to the former president’s personal and business tax returns, have been examining whether the company and Weisselberg properly accounted for those forms of compensation, said sources.

ABC News has previously reported that prosecutors zeroed in on the perks after Weisselberg’s daughter-in-law Jennifer revealed the existence of a rent-free apartment used by her estranged husband, Weisselberg’s son Barry.

Attorneys for the former president’s company were told to expect charges last week by Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance’s staff, the sources said.

“In my more than 50 years of practice, never before have I seen the District Attorney’s Office target a company over employee compensation or fringe benefits,” Ronald Fishchetti, an attorney for former President Trump, told ABC News in a statement last week, adding the case in his view is “completely outrageous.”

Trump himself is not expected to be part of these criminal charges. He has denied all wrongdoing and has dismissed the investigation as being politically motivated, calling it “a continuation of the greatest Witch Hunt in American history.”

GOP donor funds South Dakota National Guard deployment to Texas border

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem announced Tuesday that she was deploying 50 members of the National Guard to Texas to help with what she called a “national security crisis” on the southern border.

Noem is one of a number of Republican governors who recently pledged to send troops to the border, but a line in her announcement raised eyebrows: “The deployment will be paid for by a private donation.”

This method of funding is, at the very least, extremely rare. A spokesperson for the National Guard Bureau told Yahoo News they were not aware of any states that have ever claimed to have used private donations to fund a National Guard deployment, but that it was possible it had happened previously.

The money for the deployment is coming from Willis Johnson, a Tennessee billionaire and major GOP donor. It’s unknown how much Johnson, who founded the vehicle auctioning company Copart, gave to South Dakota, but he said he did so to help protect America.

“God gave America to us and God can take it away,” Johnson told Talking Points Memo in an interview. “If our people don’t protect it, then I don’t know what’s gonna happen.”

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks to attendees at the North Carolina GOP convention on June 5, 2021 in Greenville, North Carolina. (Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images)South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks to attendees at the North Carolina GOP convention on June 5, 2021 in Greenville, North Carolina. (Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images)

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem at the North Carolina GOP convention on June 5. (Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images)

A spokesperson for Noem said she had the authority to accept Johnson’s money under state law “if she determines doing so is in the best interest of the State.”

When asked when the troops would deploy and what they would be doing at the border, a spokesperson for the South Dakota National Guard said they were not able to provide details due to “operational security.”

State Sen. Reynold Nesiba, the Democratic whip, told Yahoo News Wednesday afternoon that his staff informed him it was a $1 million donation from the Willis and Reba Johnson’s Foundation to cover the troops. Nesiba said it was unclear whether the donation was solicited, if any other promises were made between Noem and Johnson or what would happen if the funding ran out before the deployment was complete. Nesiba said there was “no question” Noem had the ability to deploy the Guard but that the state had enough funds to pay for the deployment without the Johnson donation.

“Whether it was intended to be this way or not, it looks like we’re allowing a donor in Tennessee to hire our Guard to go and really pursue a partisan, political endeavor,” Nesiba said, adding that he would be proposing legislation to close the loophole that would make it clear the state’s troops were “not for sale or rent.”

Noem, first elected in 2018 after serving in the U.S. House, has previously clashed with the Biden administration over immigration. When the federal government was looking into foster care programs and shelters to house migrant children, Noem said they wouldn’t be welcome in her state, tweeting, “South Dakota won’t be taking any illegal immigrants that the Biden Administration wants to relocate. My message to illegal immigrants … Call me when you’re an American.”

The border has become a political flashpoint as Republicans blame President Biden for the surge in migrants. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott welcomed former President Donald Trump to the border for a visit on Wednesday. Earlier this month, Abbott announced he would be continuing the construction of a wall along the border, using state funds to start the project but soliciting private donations.

Abbott was joined by fellow Republican Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona in a June 10 letter calling for support from the other 48 states to address the crisis. “Securing our border with Mexico is the federal government’s responsibility,” read the letter. “But the Biden Administration has proven unwilling or unable to do the job.”

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott addresses former President Donald Trump during a border security briefing to discuss further plans in securing the southern border wall on June 30, 2021 in Weslaco, Texas. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)Texas Gov. Greg Abbott addresses former President Donald Trump during a border security briefing to discuss further plans in securing the southern border wall on June 30, 2021 in Weslaco, Texas. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and former President Donald Trump during a briefing in Weslaco, Texas, on Wednesday to discuss the southern border wall. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

The National Guard Bureau told Yahoo News that while a number of service members have been deployed along the southwest border under control of the Department of Defense, the South Dakota troops that Noem is planning to send will work with the Texas National Guard.

“The South Dakota National Guard is mobilizing a contingency of service members as a force multiplier in support of Operation Lone Star,” the Texas Military Department told Yahoo News, referring to an initiative Abbott launched in March.

In the month of May, Border Patrol agents “encountered 180,034 people attempting entry along the Southwest Border,” U.S. Customs and Border Protection said on its website. During the Trump administration, border encounters hit a high of 132,856 in May 2019, according to CBP data. BuzzFeed News reported this week that the number of migrants detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement has grown during Biden’s time in office.

The overwhelming majority of migrants who attempted to enter the U.S. this spring were turned away under Title 42 — a health care provision, utilized under Trump and continued during the Biden administration, that justifies the expulsion of migrants seeking asylum on the grounds that they represent a threat to public health.

While Republican officials have blamed immigrants for crime, multiple studies have found that not to be the case, including findings from the University of Wisconsin published in December that found “crime rates among undocumented immigrants are just a fraction of those of their U.S.-born neighbors.” That’s in line with previous research, such as a 2018 Cato Institute report that found “the criminal conviction rate for legal immigrants was about 85 percent below the native-born rate.”

A member of the National Guard stand watch while immigrants wait to be processed after crossing the Rio Grande into the U.S. on June 16, 2021 in Roma, Texas. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)A member of the National Guard stand watch while immigrants wait to be processed after crossing the Rio Grande into the U.S. on June 16, 2021 in Roma, Texas. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

A member of the National Guard stands watch while immigrants wait to be processed in Roma, Texas, on June 16 after crossing the Rio Grande into the U.S. (Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

Noem was not the only governor to answer the request of Abbott and Ducey. Last week, Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said he’d be sending 50 state law enforcement members to the border but did not say how the operation would be funded.

“That is still a point of discussion,” DeSantis said at a press conference in Pensacola. “Typically, if someone would help us, you know, we would pick up some of their funding, and so that is how we would hope that it goes. But we do not anticipate getting any federal funds.” 


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After Contentious Debate, UNC Grants Tenure To Nikole Hannah-Jones

Nikole Hannah-Jones accepting a Peabody Award in May 2016.

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Nikole Hannah-Jones accepting a Peabody Award in May 2016.

Mike Coppola/Getty Images

Trustees for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill voted Wednesday afternoon at a closed session to give tenure to star New York Times writer Nikole Hannah-Jones, several months after refusing to consider her proposed tenure.

The case inspired a bruising debate over race, journalism and academic freedom. It led both to national headlines and anger and distress among many Black faculty members and students at UNC. Some professors there have publicly said they were reconsidering their willingness to remain at the university over the journalist’s treatment by the university..

“We welcome Nikole Hannah-Jones back to campus,” the UNC’s board chairman, Richard Stevens, said at the close of statements after the three-hour special session of the trustees. “Our university is not a place to cancel people. Our university is better than that. Our nation is better than that.

“We embrace and endorse academic freedom and vigorous debate and constructive disagreement,” Stevens said. He also said the campus was not a place for calling people “woke” or “racist.” The trustees, he said, had to endure terrible insults but could not respond for privacy reasons involving the decision.

The dean of the UNC School of Journalism and Media, Susan King, said in a statement that she was heartened by the outcome.

“It has taken longer than I imagined, but I am deeply appreciative that the board has voted in favor of our school’s recommendation,” she wrote. “I knew that when the board reviewed her tenure dossier and realized the strength of her teaching, service and professional vision they would be moved to grant tenure.”

Protesters had demonstrated at the Carolina Inn on Wednesday afternoon, where the meeting was held, and were confronted inside before its start by campus police. They relented, heading outside, after being informed that Hannah-Jones had asked for a private meeting.

Months earlier, board members asked for more information about her credentials when originally declining to take up her proposed tenure. However, it soon became clear that opposition had focused on her work on “the 1619 Project,” a New York Times initiative she conceived on the legacy of slavery on U.S. society today.

Opposition came from a donor

Some of that opposition came from Walter Hussman, a UNC donor and Arkansas newspaper publisher whose name adorns UNC’s journalism school. Hussman, who is also an alumnus, told NPR he was given pause by criticism of prominent scholars that Hannah-Jones distorted the historical record in arguing that the protection of slavery was one of the primary motivations of the Founding Fathers in seeking independence from the British. (Hannah-Jones has recently tweeted that she will be able to back up that contention in her forthcoming book.)

He spoke to a trustee and administrators about his concerns, while saying it is the university’s choice to make.

Predecessors got tenure

Hannah-Jones was up for a professorship endowed by the Knight Foundation; several predecessors in the professorship were granted tenure while, like Hannah-Jones, also lacking a doctorate. Tenure is the promise of near-certain lifetime employment as a professor, barring misdeeds or dereliction of professional obligations. It is intended to ensure academic freedom for scholars to explore ideas and inquiry independent of public or political pressure.

It is highly unusual for a distinguished university’s trustees to turn down a professor for tenure once it has been backed by the relevant department’s faculty, chairman, the dean, and the provost, or chief academic officer. It is seen as interfering in the academic operation of the campus. Dean King had offered a Hannah-Jones a five-year contract to teach and said she intended to continue to seek the trustees’ approval for tenure.

Hannah-Jones is recipient of MacArthur genius grant

Hannah-Jones has won some of the most prestigious awards in journalism, and more. She won a MacArthur “genius grant” for her reporting on the persistence of segregation in American life. She won a Pulitzer Prize for her essay accompanying “the 1619 Project.”

Hannah-Jones also won a Peabody award for a three-part project for This American Life on racially segregated schools in contemporary America. She also won a national magazine award. She earned a master’s degree from the school itself in 2003. A former reporter for the News and Observer in nearby Raleigh, Hannah-Jones was also a reporter for the Portland Oregonian and the investigative outlet ProPublica.

Earlier this month, Hannah-Jones announced she would not accept the offer and would consider suing the university if it failed to give her tenure.

Hussman argued against her credentials by saying she was helping to erode trust in the press by ignoring important journalistic principles of objectivity – the idea that reporters should not take sides.

“I worry that we’re moving away from those time-tested principles of journalism that we had in the 20th century that were so effective at engendering tremendous trust in the media,” Hussman told NPR. He reiterated, however, his pledge of $25 million to the journalism school was not contingent on UNC’s vote on Hannah-Jones’s tenure, and that it was the university’s decision to make.

In a separate interview with NPR, Hannah-Jones said the promise of objectivity is a subterfuge.

“Most mainstream newspapers reflect power,” she said. “They don’t actually reflect the experiences of large segments of these populations, and that’s why many of these populations don’t trust them. So when I hear that, I think he’s speaking to a different audience.”

King has argued that Hannah-Jones’ intensive interests in reporting on race and society spoke to the moment and would enhance student experience. “She is a journalist’s journalist, a teacher’s teacher and a woman of substance with a voice of consequence,” King said Wednesday. “Hannah-Jones will make our school better with her presence. She will deepen the University’s commitment to intellectual integrity and to access for all.”

At 6:36p.m., about a half-hour after the announcement, Hannah-Jones posted a photo of herself on Twitter holding what appeared to be a celebratory glass of whiskey or bourbon. It had been mostly consumed.

NSA denies Tucker Carlsons claim that its out to get him

Fox News host Tucker Carlson continued to insist Tuesday that the National Security Agency had spied on his email and text communications and planned to leak sensitive information in an effort to “take this show off the air.” 

Carlson, the host of the top-rated show on Fox News, first made that claim during Monday night’s broadcast. 

“Yesterday we heard from a whistleblower within the U.S. government who reached out to warn us that the NSA, the National Security Agency, is monitoring our electronic communications and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air,” he told his viewers. 

In response to Carlson’s claim, which he made without providing evidence, the NSA took the unusual step of issuing a public denial. 

Shortly after the NSA posted the statement, Carlson opened his Tuesday night program by calling it “an entire paragraph of lies,” and pressing his claim that a whistleblower had alerted him that the NSA “was reading out electronic communications, our emails and texts, and was planning to leak them selectively in an effort to hurt us.” 

“This person had details from my emails that no one outside the recipient could have known, so it was not a delusion, it was entirely real. In fact, it was confirmed,” he said, again without providing any hard evidence to back up his story. 

Carlson has previously made explosive claims on his show that later fizzled. In October, during the final stretch of the 2020 presidential campaign, he told viewers he had been sent documents about then-candidate Joe Biden and his family that were “directly relevant to the presidential campaign.” But then the documents disappeared, Carlson said, pinning the blame on UPS. When the documents were located, Carlson never circled back to report on their contents. 

Fox News host Tucker Carlson speaks during the National Review Institute's Ideas Summit on March 29, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)Fox News host Tucker Carlson speaks during the National Review Institute's Ideas Summit on March 29, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Fox News host Tucker Carlson. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

CNN reported Tuesday that even Carlson’s colleagues at Fox News appeared hesitant to amplify his latest claims.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked aboard Air Force One on Tuesday whether the Biden administration was aware of any efforts by the NSA to monitor the conversations of U.S. citizens, including Carlson. 

“The NSA, as I think you’re well aware, everyone on this plane is well aware, I should say, is an entity that focuses on foreign threats and individuals who are trying, attempting to do us harm on foreign soil,” Psaki said. “So that is their purview.” 

The NSA’s legal mandate is to monitor threats posed by foreign actors. Those targets, however, can have communications with U.S. citizens, leading the NSA to sometimes collect information on Americans. In order to surveil American citizens directly, the agency is legally required to obtain a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

But the NSA has been found to challenge its legal boundaries. In 2013, intelligence contractor Edward Snowden leaked a massive trove of classified information revealing the extent of NSA surveillance on Americans’ communications. 

On Wednesday, two GOP House members, Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Matt Gaetz of Florida, made sure to highlight Carlson’s accusations during a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee. 

“Tucker Carlson stated on his show the other night his belief that the NSA was monitoring his communications,” Jordan said. “While the NSA said in a carefully worded statement — I encourage all of you to read that — that Mr. Carlson was not the target, not a target, they didn’t deny that they had reviewed his communications.”

Gaetz went even further, calling for “an inspector general investigation into any monitoring that the NSA or any other element of the intelligence community has engaged in, relative to Tucker Carlson.” 

The Florida lawmaker also took aim at the NSA statement. 

“What’s interesting is there is no denial that they were monitoring Tucker Carlson, even if he wasn’t the target,” he said. “There’s probably somebody in Tucker Carlson’s orbit that the NSA was monitoring.”

Gaetz is the subject of a Justice Department investigation into allegations concerning a variety of sex crimes. He last appeared on Carlson’s program on March 30, where he discussed the investigation. At the conclusion of the interview, Carlson told viewers it was one of the “weirdest” he had ever conducted. 


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Donald Rumsfeld, The Controversial Architect Of The Iraq War, Has Died

Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, pictured in February 2011, has died, his family announced on Wednesday.

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Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, pictured in February 2011, has died, his family announced on Wednesday.

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Donald Rumsfeld, the longtime military thinker and Washington powerbroker who served twice as secretary of defense, has died. He was 88 years old.

Rumsfeld’s family confirmed his death in a Twitter post.

“It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the passing of Donald Rumsfeld, an American statesman and devoted husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. At 88, he was surrounded by family in his beloved Taos, New Mexico,” the statement read.

“History may remember him for his extraordinary accomplishments over six decades of public service, but for those who knew him best and whose lives were forever changed as a result, we will remember his unwavering love for his wife Joyce, his family and friends and the integrity he brought to a life dedicated to country.”

Rumsfeld holds the distinction of being both the youngest and oldest person to serve at helm of the Defense Department.

Notoriously hawkish and a child of the neoconservative movement that found considerable momentum in the George W. Bush White House, Rumsfeld is perhaps best remembered as one of the key architects of the decades-long wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

His post-9/11 strategy has become one of the hallmarks of U.S. foreign policy, and the bloody trail left in the wake of the 2000s invasions have left some to remember him as a skilled statesmen, while others have blamed these interventions as responsible for destabilizing the region and roping American soldiers into seemingly endless war.

As the Iraq War raged, U.S. troops became embroiled in a scandal involving the harsh treatment of Iraqi prisoners in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison. Rumsfeld subsequently said he offered to quit twice during that period, but that Bush “made that decision and said he did want me to stay on.”

His position on the treatment of terrorism suspects at Guantanamo Bay also drew scrutiny — and criticism. A memo that detailed how interrogators at the prison camp forced prisoners to stand for 4 hours at a time, bore this handwritten note from Rumsfeld: “I stand for 8–10 hours a day. Why is standing [by prisoners] limited to 4 hours? D.R.”

Bush, under whom Rumsfeld served his second defense term, eulogized his longtime ally on Wednesday.

“On the morning of September 11, 2001, Donald Rumsfeld ran to the fire at the Pentagon to assist the wounded and ensure the safety of survivors. For the next five years, he was in steady service as a wartime secretary of defense — a duty he carried out with strength, skill, and honor,” Bush said in a statement.

Then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld watches as President Bush talks about the devastation at the Pentagon in Washington on Sept. 12, 2001.

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Then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld watches as President Bush talks about the devastation at the Pentagon in Washington on Sept. 12, 2001.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

“In a busy and purposeful life, Don Rumsfeld was a Naval officer, a member of Congress, a distinguished cabinet official in several administrations, a respected business leader — and, with his beloved wife, the co-founder of a charitable foundation. Later in life, he even became an app developer. All his life, he was good-humored and big-hearted, and he treasured his family above all else. Laura and I are very sorry to learn of Don’s passing, and we send our deepest sympathy to Joyce and their children. We mourn an exemplary public servant and a very good man.”

Rumsfeld resigned as defense secretary in 2006 as Americans expressed outrage over the Iraq War, which was fast becoming a foreign policy liability for the Bush administration.

Rumsfeld largely stood by his actions, though, in his 2011 memoir and in his farewell remarks to the Pentagon in 2006.

“A conclusion by our enemies that the United States lacks the will or the resolve to carry out our missions that demand sacrifice and demand patience is every bit as dangerous as an imbalance of conventional military power,” he said. “It may well be comforting to some to consider graceful exits from the agonies and, indeed, the ugliness of combat. But the enemy thinks differently.”

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Safe Mode allows you to start your device using minimal functionality, limiting the number of apps and processes running. This can be handy as there could be times when your device has malicious files or processes running that’s hindering its performance or blocking you from using it. Safe Mode can stop these nuisances from opening and allow you to remove them by running antivirus scans after your computer starts. When installing the AMD display diver my screen becomes black. My computer does do anything and I have to manually turn it off and turn it on again. When this happens and my computer boots up again the driver is not installed. I ran DDU before I tried installing the driver.

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The mechanism that the component uses to update its sub-components is implementation specific between the sub-component and the primary component and is beyond the scope of the CFU specification. Evaluation of the appropriateness of the update lies with the component receiving it, not in the driver.

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WDDM 2.9 in Windows 10 Insider Preview “Iron” will bring support for GPU hardware acceleration to the Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 and support for feature level 12_2 and HLSL Shader Model 6.6. Driver Hot Update, reducing server downtime and allowing driver security hot patch to the kernel mode driver. Render Pass, introducing render pass concept in Direct3D 12, adding new APIs to be run on existing drivers and allow user mode drivers to choose optimal rendering path without heavy CPU penalty. Shared graphics power components, allowing non-graphics drivers to participate in the power management of a graphics device.

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This is entirely personal preference , so choose what you like and click Next. Set the max video resolution to the same resolution you selected previously and click Next. Installation is a bit involved, but not too complicated. Please see the above System Optimization for tips on freeing up enough memory i fnecessary. You’ll also want to use a mouse for this, so be sure to follow the mouse driver instructions above to get that setup. If you don’t need this, comment out the line to free up that memory.

Mom gunned down during trip to drop off son at Naval Academy: Police

“Somebody has lost their mom on the proudest day, probably, of her life.”

A Houston mom was shot and killed while visiting Maryland to drop off her son at the U.S. Naval Academy, police said.

Michelle Cummings, 57, was sitting on a hotel patio, enjoying the breeze, when she was shot multiple times just after midnight on Tuesday, Annapolis Police Chief Edward Jackson said.

Cummings was with her husband and another couple at the time, police said.

“It is believed that the shots were fired on Pleasant Street and traveled a short distance shooting the victim,” Jackson said at a news conference Tuesday.

Cummings didn’t appear to be the intended target, police said.

Cummings and her husband were in Annapolis to bring their son, a football prospect, to the U.S. Naval Academy, Jackson said.

Her son, Midshipman Candidate Leonard Cummings III, graduated this year from the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Rhode Island, and is an incoming freshman for the Naval Academy Class of 2025, the Academy said.

Last year, when he committed to the Naval Academy, Michelle Cummings told ABC Houston station KTRK-TV, “I love this kid dearly … We could not ask for a better son.”

Superintendent Vice Adm. Sean Buck said in a statement, “We will do all that we can to support Leonard, his father and the entire Cummings family during this unfathomable time. My wife, Joanne, and I, on behalf of all of us here in Annapolis, offer our deepest sympathies.”

Leonard “Trey” Cummings graduated last year from Westfield High School in Texas, the Spring Independent School District said.

“Ms. Cummings was a very engaged parent,” the district said in a statement. “She served in 2019-20 as the president of the Westfield High School Football Booster Club and was always ready to support our student athletes. Our hearts and prayers go out to the Cummings family during this time of sorrow.

Jackson said at a Wednesday news conference, “I’m a bit emotional with this case … this is a true victim.”

Rachel Byrd of the FBI said Wednesday, “I know the pride she must have felt bringing her son to start his new life … only to have her life cut senselessly short.”

Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley told reporters Tuesday, “This city’s heart is broken.”

“Somebody has lost their mom on the proudest day, probably, of her life,” he said.

“There are no circumstances where this can be tolerated. My sympathies go out to the family,” Buckley said. “We are focused on getting guns off the street, but it only takes one criminal with a gun for the results to be tragic.”

A reward of $22,000 has been offered for information leading to the gunman’s arrest and conviction, Jackson announced Wednesday.

Jackson said police have leads, though he declined to go into detail.

The mayor vowed, “The perpetrators will be found and they will be held to account.”

To the gunman, the chief said, “Turn yourself in — we’re coming after you.”

Police ask anyone with information to contact the department at 410-260-3439.

ABC News’ Sarah Shales and Luis Martinez contributed to this report.

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The House Will Vote On A Select Committee To Investigate The Jan. 6 Riot

Supporters of Donald Trump try to break through a police barrier Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol. The House of Representatives is set to take up legislation Wednesday to create a select committee to investigate the insurrection.

Julio Cortez/AP

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Julio Cortez/AP

Supporters of Donald Trump try to break through a police barrier Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol. The House of Representatives is set to take up legislation Wednesday to create a select committee to investigate the insurrection.

Julio Cortez/AP

The House of Representatives is expected to take up legislation Wednesday to create a select committee to launch a new inquiry into the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, marking the latest turn in a partisan fight to investigate the riot.

Senate Republicans blocked a move last month to vote on an outside commission, leaving Democratic leaders with plans to move forward with a House select committee instead. But some Republicans who supported the independent commission now say they’ll oppose the select committee.

Already, several congressional committees have launched their own inquiries into the riot, which have run parallel to criminal investigations by the FBI that have led to more than 500 arrests connected to the breach of the Capitol.

“We hope to get to the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth with respect to the events of Jan. 6,” said Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York, who chairs the House Democratic Caucus. The committee would look into “what happened that fateful day, why it happened and how do we prevent that type of violent assault on the Capitol, the Congress, and the Constitution from ever happening again.”

How the panel would work

The panel will face challenges confronted by other previous select committees, including the one formed by Republicans to look into the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has not yet named the chair of the panel or the Democratic lawmakers she plans to tap to be on it.

The panel will have subpoena power and a total of 13 members, with eight selected by Pelosi and the remaining five by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. But Pelosi has not ruled out a veto of McCarthy’s selections since the panel’s resolution directs those appointments to be made with her consultation.

Pelosi has also signaled that she could use one of her eight picks to select a Republican. Quickly, Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, who was recently ousted from her House leadership role by McCarthy and others, became a potential contender. Cheney hasn’t ruled out the possibility, saying the final decision is Pelosi’s.

For now, House Republicans, like Democrats, aren’t saying who could be on the committee, but they are quick to slam the plan.

“If you look at the last vote (on the commission), it was overwhelmingly opposed by Republicans and what we’ve said is, look there are a lot of standing committees that have jurisdiction,” House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., said. “Speaker Pelosi should be exercising that same ability — not going down a partisan route.”

But this time, Scalise and others could have more company to oppose the panel. Among them, Rep. John Katko of New York, the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, who helped broker the deal on the bipartisan commission with the committee’s top Democrat, Chairman Bennie Thompson of Mississippi.

On Tuesday, Katko called the panel a “turbo-charged partisan exercise,” arguing it would be skewed with Democratic picks, with all 13 members ultimately selected by Pelosi. As a result, Katko said he’ll vote no on the select committee and can’t envision a scenario where he would serve on it.

“I led the charge to create a Jan. 6 commission that would be external, independent, bipartisan and equitable in membership and subpoena power,” Katko said. “The select committee proposed by Speaker Pelosi is literally the exact opposite of that.”

How a bipartisan commission failed

Pelosi announced the plans to move forward with the committee last week. It marked nearly a month after the Senate fell a few votes short to move forward with floor debate to take up bipartisan legislation to establish the independent commission to investigate the insurrection.

Six Republicans joined Democrats to move to debate, with a final Senate tally of 54 to 35, that fell short of the 60 votes needed to proceed. Earlier in May, the House approved the commission plan by a 252-175 vote, with 35 Republicans joining Democrats.

The legislation was modeled after the commission established in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, with a panel of commissioners divvied evenly between the parties and with bipartisan subpoena power.

Ahead of the votes, former President Donald Trump blasted the plan and asked GOP leaders to reject it. Both McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., followed suit, along with a majority of their party in both chambers.

Pelosi and other Democrats have blasted Republicans for blocking the move.

“They had an opportunity, and I don’t think it should be lost on any of us that Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans turned this opportunity away to have a bipartisan, even-split commission,” said Rep. Pete Aguilar of California, the chief deputy whip for House Democrats.

Death Toll Climbs To 16 In The Surfside Condo Collapse, With 147 Missing

Search and rescue personnel work alongside heavy machinery Wednesday to sift through the rubble at the Champlain Towers South condo building, where scores of people remain missing almost a week after it partially collapsed.

Lynne Sladky/AP

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Search and rescue personnel work alongside heavy machinery Wednesday to sift through the rubble at the Champlain Towers South condo building, where scores of people remain missing almost a week after it partially collapsed.

Lynne Sladky/AP

The bodies of four more victims have been recovered from the rubble of the Champlain Towers South in Surfside, Fla., bringing the death toll from last week’s partial collapse to 16.

Authorities leading the rescue and recovery operation said Wednesday that 147 victims remain missing or unaccounted for.

Ray Jadallah, the assistant fire chief of Miami-Dade County, told family members at a morning briefing that the four bodies were discovered on Tuesday night, officials said.

Rescue crews are now in their seventh day of around-the-clock searching of the massive pile of rubble left behind by last Thursday’s partial collapse of the 12-story-tall building. Thursday was also the last day crews pulled anyone from rubble alive.

Authorities in Florida said that rescuers would continue the search for victims.

“Rest assured those folks are going to be working on that pile, and it’s not going to stop, and they’re going to get answers one way or another,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis told reporters on Wednesday.

Officials have not yet released names for all 16 people who have been confirmed dead, but earlier in the day they issued one more: 92-year-old Hilda Noriega. Miami-Dade Police said her body had been recovered on Tuesday.

“The Noriega’s have lost the ‘heart and soul’ and ‘matriarch’ of their family, but will get through this time by embracing the unconditional love Hilda was known for,” read a statement from the family shared by the city of North Bay Village in Florida.

Search teams say they have so far removed more than 3 million pounds of wreckage and debris from the site of the collapse.

The president and first lady are scheduled to visit the site on Thursday.