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For four hours, she was a miracle — a tiny girl born prematurely after her pregnant

mom was fatally shot in the chest. But that miracle was short-lived, spiraling into

unimaginable tragedy when the baby also died.

Now cops want to talk to the 27-year-old dead woman’s uncle, who may have had a

beef with the victim because she had possible knowledge of criminal activity involving

him, a police source said.

Brandee Anastasia Massey, who was just over six months pregnant, was walking in the

15th-floor hallway to her apartment in LeFrak City after dropping three of her children

off at school around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. A gunman crept up on the mother of four

and started blasting away.

Massey was hit in the right side of her chest and right elbow, according to police sources.

She was rushed to Elmhurst Hospital, where she died an hour later. Doctors managed to

deliver her baby girl, but the newborn died around 1:30 p.m.

“This is a tragedy on top of a tragedy,” a police source said.

The shooter was still being sought late Wednesday, officials said.

The morning gun blasts woke up the sleepy building on Horace Harding Expressway near

99th St., neighbors said.

“It was like a big, loud boom,” a neighbor who wished not to be named said of the gunfire.

“I thought something happened to the building. I was upset thinking that the building was

falling down.”

The shots were quickly followed by blood-curdling screams, the neighbor said.

The victim’s husband, Joseph Massey, also heard the shots. He told cops he was sleeping in

their apartment when the crack of gunfire woke him .

When he opened the door to see what was happening, he found his wife sprawled on the

hallway floor, police sources said.

A friend of the victim’s told the Daily News that Massey’s husband was devastated by the

unspeakable act.

“Everyone is just trying to wake up from this nightmare,” said the woman, who asked that

her name not be used.

“(Brandee Massey) was a wonderful mother, loving and caring, (and) extended her heart

out to people,” she sobbed. She said she and Massey had discussed names for her unborn

child. If it was a girl, Massey planned to call her Tru Melody, the woman said.

Massey was taking night classes at a cosmetology school, but everyone who knew her said

her family came first.

“She was a great mother to her children — she was very generous,” the woman said through

tears. “It’s not fair! It’s wrong and heartless whoever did that.”

A LeFrak City security guard said Massey was breathing but not talking when paramedics

wheeled her out of the building on a gurney.

“She was out,” the guard said.

Another neighbor who claimed to hear pounding just before and after the blast feared it

was the doomed woman frantically banging on her door to escape the killer.“(Brandee Massey)

was a wonderful mother, loving and caring, (and) extended her heart out to people,” she

sobbed. She said she and Massey had discussed names for her unborn child. If it was a girl,

Massey planned to call her Tru Melody, the woman said.

Massey was taking night classes at a cosmetology school, but everyone who knew her said

her family came first.

Detectives are investigating a number of motives — including that Massey’s uncle may have

been the triggerman. She had filed a complaint against him involving a domestic incident,

a police source said.

An ex-con who did two stints in prison — one for weapons possession, the other for narcotics

— the uncle had been in an ongoing battle with Massey, neighbors said.

The uncle, whose name is being withheld by The News because he has not been charged with

a crime, had also been arrested for marijuana possession, impersonating a public servant

and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, police sources said.

When downstairs neighbor Bill Algarin, 65, heard the shots, he “thought it was construction,”

he said.

Then he heard that Massey, a longtime resident of LeFrak City, had been killed — and a dark

cloud fell over his Thanksgiving weekend, he said.

“She was very nice and intelligent,” Algarin said somberly.

Longtime tenants Trevor Paul, 56, and Norma Cooksey, 77, said they had known Massey since

she was a little girl.

Massey used to share the apartment with her mother and grandmother, but both moved

South about two years ago, they said.

“She was a nice person,” Paul said.

Cooksey said Massey’s kids — the youngest is 4 and the oldest 9 — “look exactly like Brandee

when she was a kid.”

“Her mother used to bring her here when she was a little girl,” Cooksey said about Massey’s


Massey also had a falling out with her mother before she moved South, and lived mostly

with her grandmother and her uncle.

Her grandmother soon followed Massey’s mother down South, neighbors said.

A short time later, she had a falling-out with her uncle, whom she filed a restraining order

against, neighbors recalled.

Police could not confirm Wednesday night that Massey had gotten an order of protection.

It was not revealed if the gunman followed the mom-to-be from Public School 206, the

Horace Harding School, which is across the street from the apartment building, but se-

parated by the Long Island Expressway. He may have been lying in wait as she came out

of the elevator.

If he’s caught, the killer will likely face a double murder charge since Massey’s baby was

born alive, according to a spokesman for Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.

“If the person is born alive, it is considered a baby and a homicide charge is possible,”

the spokesman said.

The Thanksgiving tragedy got worse for Joseph Massey and the four now-motherless

children Wednesday night.

After being grilled by the police for hours, he was told that he can’t get back into his apart-


The home, which was secured by police all day, was deemed too dangerous to go back to

in case the gunman returns, sources close to the case said.

State Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Queens) was trying to find lodging for the father and children,

who were in the custody of the Administration for Children’s Services for the afternoon,

according to Peralta spokesman Frank Sobrino.

“The cops are not letting them back into the apartment, so we’re doing what we can to

find them a place to stay,” Sobrino said.

Joseph Massey’s relatives were devastated Wednesday night.

“What happened today destroyed a lot of lives,” said Cedric Lebron Harris, Joseph

Massey’s brother-in-law.

Harris said his wife, Joseph’s sister, was so broken up over what happened that she

took a long drive, leaving her cell phone behind.

“She’s not answering any questions,” he said. “We’re respecting my brother-in-law’s


Some LeFrak City neighbors weren’t sold on the angle that a relative was responsible

for the shocking murder, claiming that their building has become a haven for criminals.

“What has happened is there’s a lot of people now lingering in the basement and the

first floor,” said resident Wendy Bruno, 46. “The police come. They can see them com-

ing and run to another floor. And there are no cameras on the floors.”

Constantin Petescu, who moved into Massey’s apartment building with his pregnant

wife and 2-year-old girl in March, now wants to move.

“Every week, you see cops here,” he said.


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Pittsburgh authorities said a pregnant woman sitting outside a drugstore died when an

elderly driver trying to park jumped the curb and pinned her against the wall.

Doctors delivered her nearly full-term baby, who remained in critical condition

Wednesday night. A hospital spokeswoman said no information would be released


Police said 30-year-old Jodie Guthrie was outside a North Side drugstore Wednesday

afternoon when an 88-year-old motorist pulled into a parking space.

Police said the driver might have hit the gas instead of the brake. It’s not clear if charges

will be filed. A spokesperson couldn’t be reached Thursday.

Guthrie’s death comes the same day a 27-year-old pregnant woman in New York was

fatally shot after dropping off her children at school. Her daughter was born alive but

later died.

Last Thursday in Cleveland, Ohio, 37-year-old Tanesha Anderson was killed by police officers after

they gruesomely “slammed” her head against concrete. This horrific killing was witnessed by family

members as it happened right outside their home. Anderson was pronounced dead at the Cleveland

Clinic shortly after the assault by Ohio police. “They killed my sister,” Joell Anderson, Tanesha’s

40-year-old brother said as he fought back tears. “I watched it.”

Tanesha experienced a long-going battle with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. On the night she

was killed, Anderson began to act uncontrollably hyper following an argument. A family member

made a call to the police to come and help calm down Anderson. It’s being reported that everyone

agreed Tanesha should undergo an evaluation at St. Vincent Charity Medical Center. The officers

that showed up were given the impression the call was for “disturbing the peace” and based on first

witness accounts, there’s indication that the police operated with hostility as soon as they arrived.

“As the officers escorted Anderson to the police vehicle, she began actively resisting the officers,”

police spokesman Sgt. Ali Pillow claimed to the local Cleveland publication, The Plain Dealer.

Tanesha changed her mind about the evaluation after police slapped cuffs on her. She believed she

was within her rights to decide whether she went for a voluntary evaluation. But police, at this point,

argued that it was up to them. And then it’s being reported that Tanesha kicked at the officers and

a short time after that, she stopped moving.

Joell recalls that she was placed in a “smothering” manner in the backseat of the police car. When

she called for family, trying to escape the police’s violent grip, Joell claims he saw a sudden “Judo”

behavior from the police. When she was taken out of the car, still hysterical, a cop “placed his knee

on her back” and she was unconscious from then on. What’s worse is that Anderson was left

unclothed from the waist down without explanation.

The Cleveland Police Department has announced that the Division of Police Use of Deadly Force

Investigation Team is investigatin, but no arrests or expulsions have been made. As observers,

we’ve been down this road before, with too many Black people in this country being handled with

an uncalled for force, resulting in untimely deaths at the hands of the police. Remember when

Eric Garner was placed in a chokehold by the police that ultimately killed him right on the street

because he was also accused of resisting arrest? How are we supposed to trust the police when

they continue to kill us right on the street?

RIP Tanesha Anderson and here’s hoping that your tragic death will keep more instances like

this from happening.

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STOCKTON, CA (KTRK) — A California high school teacher is facing a misdemeanor injury

to a child charge after students filmed him dragging a 14-year-old girl into a swimming pool

during class, ABC affiliate KXTV reports.

In the 95-second long video, the teenage girl kicks the air and screams that her swimsuit top

is falling off as Danny Paterson forces her into the water. The teen had refused to get into the

pool because she had special plans that night and didn’t want to ruin her hair.

The physical education teacher wouldn’t take no for answer.

The girl’s family is being represented by Stockton attorney Gilbert Somera. She says Peterson

should have punished the girl academically instead of resorting to physical force.

“This isn’t a situation where she’s attacking a teacher and he’s defending himself. When a

woman or a 14-year-old girl says no, it means no,” Somera said.

Paterson, who has worked in the Stockton school district for more than 10 years, was immed-

iately placed on paid leave for one month. When word came around he was facing a misdemeanor,

the school was forced to put Paterson on paid leave again.

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A Center City attorney turned himself in Tuesday, accused of having sex with a 14-year-old girl,

repeatedly, in his office.

Brian Meehan’s arrest came as part of a Philadelphia grand jury investigation which reveals the

sex trafficking story of a Germantown teen. She was lured by a couple in her own neighborhood

and sold for sex to more than 20 men a week, including Meehan, according to District Attorney

Seth Williams..

“I believe there’s a special place in hell for men like Brian Meehan,” said Williams.

In March of 2012, the victim was recruited by the couple, a man and woman who admitted to investigators

they were running a prostitution ring out of their home on W. Harvey Street with five girls. During the first

week, the teen was given some money by the couple but the relationship quickly turned violent and threaten-

ing. According to the teen’s grand jury testimony, the couple sexually assaulted, beat and threatened to kill

her if she tried to leave.

The victim testified she was taken on “out-calls” to Meehan’s office in One Penn Center at 16th and JFK

Boulevard on numerous occasions. She said they had sex in a conference room with a couch and that Meehan

often offered her alcohol, which he drank but she didn’t.

According to the grand jury documents, during her visits, “Meehan often talked about his wife and three

daughters and the trips they’d taken, even suggesting that she might accompany him for travel.”

When investigators searched Meehan’s office in October, they cut out portions of the couch and a chair

where investigators said they used ultraviolent light to detect bodily fluids. He was fired from Bishop,

Dorfman, Lazaroff & Meehan last month. The firm issued a statement Tuesday saying they were shocked,

appalled and moved swiftly in terminating Meehan. “Our thoughts are with the victim. We will continue to

do everything we can to cooperate with the investigation.”

Court documents show hundreds of pornographic websites were found in the history on Meehan’s cellphone.

Close to three dozen included pornographic videos with “teen” in the title.

According to the victim, Meehan, 56, told her “he liked young girls and the youngest girl he had sex with for

money was 12-years-old.”

“Nothing is as devastating to a family or as destructive to a life in development of a child as being a victim of

sex abuse,” Williams said.
Detectives began investigating the victim’s case in 2012 after the Germantown couple sold her to a Camden

couple for $300. When she arrived at a Camden hospital complaining of severe vaginal pain and discomfort,

she told a nurse she was being forced into prostitution. Before police arrived to question her, she left the hos-

pital. When they tried to track her down, they realized hospital staff had been given a fake name.

After that, the 14-year-old was sent back to the Germantown couple, recruited by another pimp and taken

to Georgia. She was there for approximately a year before Federal authorities identified her as a victim of

sex trafficking and eventually contacted police in Philadelphia.

Meehan was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday afternoon on charges of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse,

unlawful contact with a minor, indecent assault, promoting prostitution of a minor and related offenses.

The Germantown couple has also been arrested and charged with human trafficking, involuntary deviate

sexual intercourse, statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, corrupting the morals of a minor,

indecent assault and promoting prostitution of a minor. Their names are not being released until the grand

jury completes its investigation.

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After a hotly contested finale in which only a few votes separated the final three contenders, actor Alfonso

Ribeiro emerged the winner of season 19 of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” tonight at the conclusion of

the two-part finale.

Ribeiro and his partner Witney Carson beat out “Duck Dynasty” star Sadie Robertson and her partner,

Mark Ballas, and “Pretty Little Liars” actress Janel Parrish and her partner, Val Chmerkovskiy, to claim

the coveted mirror ball trophy.

Ribeiro appeared elated as he hugged Carson, and he was in tears as he talked with the show’s co-host,

Tom Bergeron.

“I cannot believe this,” he said. “I’ve wanted it forever … I don’t even know what to say. These are happy


Carson was beaming.


“He’s one of the most hardworking people I’ve ever met,” she said of her partner, telling him directly:

“You deserve it.”

Robertson, who earned second place, thanked God for carrying her through to the finale of the competition

and said Ribeiro deserved to win.

Parrish, who took third place, appeared emotional but smiled through tears at her partner.

“I honestly am just so lucky to be here standing next to him. You were my trophy the entire season so I’m

happy,” Parrish told Chmerkovskiy.

After their two performances yesterday on the first night of the finale, Ribeiro led the pack with a perfect

score of 80, followed by Robertson with 78 points and Parrish with 77 points. YouTube star Bethany Mota,

who had made it to the final four competitors, was sent home yesterday during the first night of the finale.

With less than a day to prepare, the top three couples were assigned a fusion challenge in which they had

to create a new dance routine that combined two contrasting dance styles. They performed the routines

tonight for points from judges Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba, Julianne Hough and Bruno Tonioli.

The three finalists all earned perfect scores of 40 each for their fusion dances – Ribeiro for his cha-cha/

Argentine tango, Parrish for her foxtrot/paso doble and Robertson her samba/quickstep.

The points were added to the judges’ scores from last night for a two-night total of 120 for Ribeiro, 118 for

Robertson and 117 for Parrish. Those scores were combined with viewer votes from last night for a final

grand total.

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