(SL) – In 2013 Olympic and Paralympic standout Oscar Pistorius shot and killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp mistaking her for an intruder. Steenkamp was locked in the bathroom at his home in Pretoria when the shooting occurred. Pistorius fired four times through the door pretty much striking Steenkamp with every bullet.
He was initially given a five-year term for manslaughter in 2014, a sentence he was serving primarily on house arrest, but was found guilty of murder on appeal in 2015 and sentenced to six years.
Prosecutors had argued that the six-year term for murdering Reeva Steenkamp was “shockingly light”. While the lower court had justified the six-year sentence by citing mitigating circumstances such as rehabilitation and remorse. It said they outweighed aggravating factors such as his failure to fire a warning shot.
A South African court has now increased Pistorius’s jail sentence for killing his girlfriend to 13 years and five months.
Previously, the six-time Paralympic gold medalist had made history by becoming the first amputee sprinter to compete at the Olympics, in 2012 in London, running on prosthetic “blades”.
He had his legs amputated below the knee as a baby.
(SL) –Several celebs including ‘Girls Trip’ producer Will Packer, actor Michael Jai White and TV and Radio host Gary ‘With The Tea’ Hayes were on hand to watch Jada Pinkette Smith be honored at the HBCU Power Awards. The actress, singer-songwriter, director and philanthropist received the “Icon Award” at Morehouse College Friday night.
Smith began her acting career as the feisty “Lena” from the 80s sitcom “A Different World,” a show that brought HBCU life to tv screens across the country 30 years ago. Since then, Smith has curated a successful career in film and music while giving back to the community through the Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation.
Additionally, actor/choreographer Derek “Fonzworth Bentley” Watkins (Morehouse c/o ’96) supermodel Jessica White and actor/comedian Deon Cole co-hosted the show and kept the audience laughing.
Coltrane Curtis gave an emotional tribute to his late father and Jada Pinkett Smith’s words on the dynamics of power and the responsibility we all have to manage it wisely were moving.
Co-founded by Watkins along with event producer Jash’d Kambui Belcher (Morehouse c/o ’99) and Wall Street executive Roderick Hardamon (Morehouse c/o ’98), the HBCU Power Awards honors the achievements and accomplishments of HBCU alumni and supporters who are making innovative and leading-edge achievements in business, sports, philanthropy, media, music, technology, TV, film, politics, civil service and fashion.
“We created the HBCU Power Awards to serve as a platform to celebrate black excellence and to highlight the importance of HBCUs in our communities,” says Belcher. “Our honorees embody the spirit of success and commitment to community that HBCUs have instilled in students for decades.”
Adds Watkins: “In a time when the existence of our HBCUs is being threatened, the Power Awards is a shining reminder of the genius and innovation that black colleges generate every year.”
Smith joined an impressive list of honorees, including: Coltrane Curtis (founder, Team Epiphany), Kyle Hagler (president, Next Management), Nzinga Shaw (Chief Diversity Officer, Atlanta Hawks), Keinon Johnson (VP, Urban Promotions, Interscope Records), Phylicia Fant(SVP, Publicity, Warner Bros Records), Beverly Anderson (EVP, Cards & Retail Services, Wells Fargo) and Rob Rumley (Chair, Atlanta Housing Authority).
Sponsors of the 2017 HBCU Power Awards include Morehouse College, the Atlanta Hawks, Radio One, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley, Experience Grands Rapids and the Lowman Group/ dba the Athletes Foot.
(SL)– Last night, the 50 Shades of Pink Foundation, founded by award-winning OBGYN and TV personality Dr. Jackie Walters, presented its 5th Annual Fashion Show Fundraiser in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Atlanta City Hall was immaculately transformed into a pink wonderland of chic decor, as over 200 guests – dressed in 1920s flapper-style attire – filled the Atrium to celebrate the breast cancer survivors and supporters featured on the runway.
The event began with a heartfelt poem by Hank Stewart followed by welcome remarks from Atlanta Municipal Court Judge and honorary event chair Terrinee Gundy and 50 Shades of Pink Foundation executive director Gary Andrews.
Andrews then introduced the evening’s host — actor/author/philanthropist Hill Harper, who shared his story of being diagnosed with cancer several years ago.
The fashion show opener was a lively tap dance routine by Chloe Arnold’s Syncopated Ladies, after which, dozens of beautiful models strutted the runway in designs by Linda Bezuidenhout and Bramer Leon.
The sight of the models – many of whom were recent cancer “warriors” – was inspiring and illustrated the foundation’s mission of catering to the emotional well-being of breast cancer patients and their families.
Photo Credit: Sytonnia Moore
Photo Credit: Sytonnia Moore
Photo Credit: Sytonnia Moore
Photo Credit: Sytonnia Moore
After the fashion presentation, Hill Harper and Dr. Jackie led an auction to find individual donors to sponsor the 50 Shades of Pink Gift Baskets that the foundation provides to breast cancer patients.
Then, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed closed the program with a surprise check for $20,000 to the foundation to further their efforts to bring comfort and care to breast cancer survivors.
Special guests in attendance were Atlanta City Councilwoman Keisha Lance Bottoms, “Married to Medicine” stars Dr. Heavenly Kimes, Mariah Huq,Curtis Berry and many more.
Sponsors of the 50 Shades of Pink Fundraiser were Ford Motor Company, The Cochran Firm, Jack Daniels, and All N One Security Services. Special thanks to event producer Eboni Cummings,S.T.E.P.S. Events and the City of Atlanta.
(ATLANTA – October 6th, 2017) – Dust off your bikes and bones—there’s a new race in town; one that has a social good cause at its core. The Martin Luther King Jr. Drive Merchants Association (MLKJDMA) announces today that it will hold its inaugural MLK Race for the Dream on Sunday, January 14, 2018.The events will include a marathon, half-marathon, bike tour, a weekend Mixer as well as a health and fitness expo.
The events will begin and end on MLK Jr. Drive and Whitehouse Drive, at Booker T. Washington High School, which was attended by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Atlanta, GA.The Health & Fitness Expo will feature the latest athletic gear and equipment as well as health and fitness experts.Registration will be open as of August 1, 2017.
“The races and bike tour are just one of many initiatives that we are launching in the community to benefit the MLK Dr. Corridor,” says Terry Collier, President of the MLKJDMA.“Our mission is to improve and increase economic impact in the district.Over time we have lost historic businesses.We are working in conjunction with the Mayor’s office as well as city and state officials to launch initiatives that will preserve established businesses as well as attract new businesses to the district for the next generation.We have a three-phased plan to upgrade the corridor and bringing a weekend of events to our community will highlight not only the advances that have been made, but also strategies for the future.”
Nationally, there is a movement to improve conditions along MLK corridors in US cities.The MLKJDMA plans to pilot this program in Atlanta and then expand it nationally, with the next targeted city being St. Louis.Several major metropolitan cities with MLK districts have expressed interest in bringing the competitions to their areas, not only for the economic impact, but also to educate their communities around health and fitness.
(SL) – An arrest has been made after a 32-year old woman was killed when a man drove his car into a crowd during the Charlottesville protest.
That man has been identified as James Alex Fields Jr. A 20-year registered member of the Republican Party.
Fields is reportedly being held in Albermarle Charlottesville Regional Jail and is being charged with 1 count of 2nd degree murder, 3 counts of malicious wounding and 1 count of failure to stop in an accident resulting in death.
(SL) – On this Episode of SytonniaLIVE the TV Series Bianca Haly joined me at the desk to talk about Dylann Roof’s trial, Donald Trump’s approaching presidency and more in our top headlines. We also talked about the latest Hollywood gossip and the royal romance that’s heating up between Meghan Markel and Prince Harry. But did you know that the Queen of England was once black? Check it out!