Bronx, New York Apartment Fire: Photos & Videos From the Scene

At least 12 people are dead and 15 others were injured following an apartment fire Thursday night (Dec. 28) in the Bronx borough of New York City.

NY Mayor Bill de Blasio confirmed in a press conference that four of the 15 injured are in critical condition and fighting for their lives at a local hospital. “This is the worst fire tragedy we have seen in this city in at least a quarter-century,” de Blasio said, adding that the fire will rank as one of the “worst losses of life to a fire’ in many years for the city.”

More than 100 FDNY firefighters worked in bone-chilling cold weather, just 15 degrees, to contain the fire and rescue people from the building. It was so cold that the water from the hoses froze into ice on the street.

According to City Department of Building records, the building is a walk-up apartment house with 25 individual units. City records also showed that the building—which is located on Prospect Avenue near East 187th Street, near the Bronx Zoo—had no elevator.

FDNY Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro said that crews were alerted to the fire at 6:51 p.m. EST and the department responded within three minutes. Nigro confirmed that the fire started on the first floor of the building and quickly spread to the fifth floor. “In a department that is certainly no stranger to tragedy, we are shocked by this loss,” he said.

“People died on various floors” of the apartment building, Nigro said, adding that the ages of the victims ranged from one-year-old to over 50. Due to the number of lives lost, Nigro called the fire “historic in its magnitude.”

Luz Hernandez, a resident of the building, said she realized something was wrong when she smelled burning rubber in her fourth-floor apartment. She said the smell was quickly followed by smoke so thick that it made her apartment pitch-black. She was able to get to her husband and two sons, 11 and 16, and the four of them climbed out of a window and down the fire escape.

Maria Bonilla, who lives a block away from the building, said she was waiting outside to hear word on a friend’s 8-month-old child. “There was a lot of people coming out in stretchers, burned,” she told reporters at the scene. “There was fire, really bad fire,” Bonilla said. “It was crazy,” she said.

Robert Gonzalez, another neighborhood resident who has a friend who lives in the building, told the Associated that his friend got out on a fire escape as another resident fled with five children. “When I got here, she was crying,” Gonzalez said.

Photos and video footage of the scene showed firefighters wheeling out victims on stretchers. The firefighters were able to rescue a number of people by climbing up ladders to reach them in their apartments and bring them back down to safety.

“Thank you to the @FDNY and first responders for their bravery and quick action,” Mayor de Blasio said in a statement on Twitter. “And thank you to the medical staff at @SBHBronx and Jacobi Medical Center for working hard to save lives right now.”

He added, “I want to offer my prayers to all the families who have lost their loved ones this evening or who are struggling. I ask all New Yorkers to keep them in your prayers, too.”

Officials said more information about the fire, including what caused it, would be released as soon as it became available.

Bronx, New York Apartment Fire: Photos & Videos From the Scene is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Azealia Banks Offers Apology to Beyoncé for Criticizing Her Artistry, Says She Felt Left Out

Azealia Banks must have really been feeling the Christmas spirt this year (or had too much eggnog). The rapper who is known to start random one-sided beefs with celebs who barely know her offered a mea culpa to the one and only Beyoncé.

Earlier this week, Banks apologized to Beyoncé on Instagram for being critical of her masterpiece visual album, Lemonade, and overall artistry. Banks admitted that her hateration stemmed from “feeling left out.”

“Beyoncé, I apologize for throwing tantrums in the past. They totally came from a place of feeling left out. you’ve inspired so much of the way I think about/value you myself as a performer and I ADORE you. Your presence in the art world and on earth is supernatural and am so so so inspired by you

…Thank you for always making the little black girl in me smile. You’ve truly always been a beacon of light for me and I’m so so humbled by this.”

I’m not sure if the “apology” was sincere or just Banks up to her usual tricks because if you blinked, you may have missed the post. She deleted it from her account and hasn’t mentioned Beyoncé since.

Banks attempted to come for Queen Bey back in 2016 following the release of Lemonade. In a series of tweets, she slammed the singer for perpetuating the “heartbroken black female narrative” and that she was the antithesis of black feminism.

Banks said that she had never seen Beyoncé fight for social justice like she claimed with “Formation” and went on to accuse the singer of stealing artistic ideas and that she sold her soul to sell more records.

“She’s not a ‘sister,’ she’s a poacher. She’s a thief,” Banks wrote on Twitter. “Sisters don’t’ steal, sisters share.”

The one-sided beef was sparked in 2013 when Banks was invited to submit a verse for Beyoncé’s then-untitled fifth album, Beyoncé. However, Banks did not make the final cut of the album and Beyoncé was added to her growing list of enemies.

We’ll see if Azealia Banks’ newfound adoration for Beyoncé continues into 2018.

Azealia Banks Offers Apology to Beyoncé for Criticizing Her Artistry, Says She Felt Left Out is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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So Sad: Rihanna’s 21-Year-Old Cousin Shot Dead One Day After Spending Christmas Together in Barbados

Rihanna and her family are ending the holiday season and 2017 in mourning. The singer’s young cousin was tragically shot and killed in Barbados one day after Christmas.

According to local Barbados news source, The Nation, Tavon Alleyne was shot multiple times by an unidentified man while walking near his home in the Lakes Close, Eden Lodge region of the island around 7 p.m. on December 26. The shooter fled the scene.

Alleyne, 21, was rushed to a nearby hospital by a private car, but died from his injuries.

Rihanna paid tribute to her cousin and made a plea to end gun violence on Instagram. She had just spent Christmas with Alleyne the day before the fatal shooting and other reports say the cousins were close. She wrote:

“RIP cousin… can’t believe it was just last night that I held you in my arms! never thought that would be the last time I felt the warmth in your body!!! Love you always man! #endgunviolence”

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Rihanna also shared a video of Alleyne saying “It’s nice to wake up.” Captioning the video, she reminded her 59 million followers to “Be grateful for life man.”

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A woman by the name of Tanella, who referred to Alleyne as her brother, also shared a heart-wrenching hospital photo of her grief over the untimely loss. “I never thought the day would come that I would have to bury you my love,” she wrote.

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Police are still investigating Alleyne’s murder and looking for the shooter. Authorities are requesting anyone with information or tips to contact Crime Stoppers 1-800-TIPS (8447).

Our thoughts are with Rihanna, Tanella, and their family during this difficult time.

So Sad: Rihanna’s 21-Year-Old Cousin Shot Dead One Day After Spending Christmas Together in Barbados is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Serena Williams Announces Return to Tennis Since Giving Birth

She gave y’all nearly a full year to have “your moment,” get to her level, and prepare for her return. Now, the wait is almost over. Serena Williams has announced her return to competitive tennis since giving birth.

The 23-time Grand Slam champion will play an exhibition against defending French Open winner Jelena Ostapenko at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi on December 30th.

“I am delighted to be returning to the court in Abu Dhabi for the first time since the birth of my daughter in September,” Williams told ESPN.

“The Mubadala World Tennis Championship has long marked the beginning of the men’s global tennis season and I am excited and honored to be making my comeback as part of the first women to participate in the event. I look forward to seeing the fans in Abu Dhabi at the 10th edition of the Championship very soon.”

Williams gave birth to her first child, Alexis Olympia, just under four months ago. She only played in two tournaments in 2017 due to her pregnancy, her last one being the Australian Open back in January. She was eight weeks pregnant during the tournament (but had not publicly shared the news) and went on to win her record-breaking 23rd Grand Slam title.

Though it has not been confirmed, Williams is expected to defend her Australian Open title in January 2018. Tournament director Craig Tiley said that it is “very likely” we’ll see the great Serena Williams competing Down Under.

“She’s got her visa, she’s entered, she’s practicing and she’s probably just got to find a bit more space for a bigger entourage. There’s no question that she’ll be ready in our view and she wants to break a record that is Margaret Court’s. It would be a pretty significant accomplishment for her to be able to do that.”

In preparation for her comeback, Williams has posted a few not-so-subtle photos on Instagram recently. “Be excited. Be very excited,” she wrote as she stepped onto a tennis court.

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There’s no question that fans are ready to see Serena Williams back in action. But the real question is: Are you competitors ready? Probably not!

Serena Williams Announces Return to Tennis Since Giving Birth is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Oh Lordt, Not Again! Mariah Carey to Headline “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” Following Last Year’s Lip Sync Fail

All Mariah Carey wants for Christmas this year is a do over. And Santa granted her wish! Following last year’s disastrous performance, the diva is returning to Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve for a shot at redemption.

Carey will headline the 46th annual telecast and perform just minutes before the ball drops and more than one million people ring in 2018 in Times Square. Dick Clark Productions and Carey made the announcement in a joint statement:

“We can all agree that last year didn’t go exactly as planned and we are thrilled to move forward together to provide America with an incredible night of music and celebration on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2018. See you in Times Square!”

Everything that could have gone wrong did exactly just that during her 2016 performance. Carey apparently couldn’t hear anything in her in-ear monitors and the prompter that displayed the lyrics wasn’t working (Ed. Note: Why do you need to see the lyrics to your own songs, sis?)

The diva responded to the technical difficulties by basically giving up on the performance. She wandered around the stage while pre-recorded vocals played, complained about the mishap, and occasionally interacted with the audience.

The aftermath of the embarrassing moment turned into a blame game. Carey’s team accused Dick Clark Productions of intentionally trying to sabotage her performance for drama and headlines. DCP called the accusations “defamatory” and claimed that an investigation into the matter showed DCP had “no involvement in the challenges associated with [Carey’s performance].” Carey even fired her reportedly fired her longtime choreographer Anthony Burrell over the incident.

A year later, and it seems both parties have come to an understanding. Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest begins its live telecast Sunday, Dec. 31 at 8:00 pm EST on ABC.

Oh Lordt, Not Again! Mariah Carey to Headline “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” Following Last Year’s Lip Sync Fail is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Cynthia Bailey Accused of Faking Relationship With Her “New Bae” Will Jones for RHOA Storyline

Since her RHOA debut, the now-married Kenya Moore has been accused of personally paying men to portray her boyfriend. Now, another Real Housewives of Atlanta star is facing rumors she has concocted a “phony” relationship for the sake of a storyline.

Radar Online is reporting Cynthia Bailey’s new relationship with Will Jones is only for the show. “No one signed an appearance release faster than Will,” a source exclusively told the entertainment news site. “His motive was so clear.”

Will, a businessman and motivational speaker, has popped up on other TV shows, including an appearance on The Steve Harvey Show for a special dating segment. “Will dates a lot of women,” the source added. “That’s the problem throughout the season.”

Due to his prior TV gigs, even Kandi Burruss had her suspicions of Cynthia’s new bae. In a recent episode, she flat out asked him if he was an opportunist, which he (obviously) denied.

The newly-divorced model has been dating Will for most the current season, but Radar’s source is adamant the relationship was faked for the show. “There is no chemistry at all between Cynthia and Will,” said the insider. “Anyone can see that. It is plain as day.”

Cynthia and Will went “Instagram official” back in August and the two have posted several photos with each other since, including a Halloween pic, which Radar’s source says was specifically for the show.

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Filming for season 10 of RHOA has reportedly wrapped and the source says the couple has already parted ways. “They are totally not together anymore,” the insider revealed. “Not even a little bit.”

The source compared Cynthia and Will to Kenya’s alleged arrangement with RHOA boyfriend Walter Jackson and was unsure if Will would even be invited to the reunion taping.

“Kenya Moore paid Walter a few seasons ago to be her boyfriend. She paid him herself. But Bravo isn’t paying Will. If he tapes the reunion show, then he’ll get compensated for a new haircut and a suit. Cynthia could pay him herself if she wanted to.”

While Cynthia has not commented on rumors that her new relationship is fake, she did share her thoughts on accusations that Will is an opportunist to BravoTV.com.

“There’s this whole thing about Will being an opportunist. He went on all these dating shows—he went on ONE dating show and was considering doing another, I don’t really care who’s before me. He can go on like 100 dating shows.

“I don’t know why they think he’s an opportunist. Opportunist, what does that even mean? I am not that open to the whole opportunist thing because I feel like okay, whatever. I’m trying to be the opportunist. I’m trying to get somebody to help me.”

Though I’m still trying to feel him out, I actually like Cynthia and Will together. I’m also not getting any sneaky Kenya/Walter/Matt Jordan vibes like Radar’s source suggests.

The Real Housewives of Atlanta airs Sundays on Bravo.

Cynthia Bailey Accused of Faking Relationship With Her “New Bae” Will Jones for RHOA Storyline is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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RHOA Season 10 Salaries Revealed: NeNe Leakes Making Bank, Porsha Williams Only Housewife Under $1 Million

It pays to be a housewife. The season 10 salaries for each cast member of The Real Housewives of Atlanta were recently revealed and some of the ladies are making serious bank to stir up a little drama in the ATL.

Radar Online exclusively revealed the salaries earlier this week thanks to a production insider. Despite being an ensemble cast, not every peach is the same size. In fact, one housewife’s check is 32% less than Queen NeNe Leakes’ multi-million-dollar payday.

Cynthia Bailey – The RHOA model negotiated the largest raise from season 9. Cynthia will pocket $1.6 million, a $400,000 boost from last year.

Kandi Burruss – The songwriter continues to grow her fortune by scoring a $200K raise. She will make an even $2 million for season 10.

Sheree Whitfield – Even though she’s an RHOA OG, Sheree is only making $1 million this season. But it’s a slight raise from the $800,000 she made for her season 9 return. Being the show’s “bone carrier” (a role she plays very well), Sheree could probably command a little more for all the tea she stirs and spills.

Kenya Moore – Kenya is bringing in $1.5 million for season 10. Unfortunately, she cost herself several coins. The new Mrs. Daly was fined $25,000 for refusing to film a scene with her father discussing why she didn’t invite him to her surprise wedding. She only agreed to a phone conversation.

She also lost $100K after producers reportedly barred her from going on the cast trip to Barcelona because they were displeased with her refusal to film scenes with her new husband, Marc Daly.

Porsha Williams – Poor Porsha! While every other housewife is making at least a cool million, Porsha will only earn $800K for season 10. To make matters worse, that’s a $100,000 raise from last season.

NeNe Leakes – Bravo had to shove out a hefty bag of cash for OG NeNe Leakes to return for the show’s milestone 10th season. The Queen of RHOA is holding the juiciest peach, earning $2.5 million this season.

The Real Housewives of Atlanta airs Sundays on Bravo.

RHOA Season 10 Salaries Revealed: NeNe Leakes Making Bank, Porsha Williams Only Housewife Under $1 Million is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Monalisa Perez & Pedro Ruiz: Woman Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter After Shooting & Killing Boyfriend In YouTube Stunt Gone Wrong

The woman who accidentally fatally shot Pedro Ruiz III, the father of her children, while filming a YouTube stunt last June has pleaded guilty to manslaughter and will serve only 180 days in jail.

Monalisa Perez entered a guilty plea to second-degree manslaughter last week in Norman County District Court. The Minnesota woman took a plea deal that reduced a maximum (but unlikely) 10-year sentence to just six months behind bars. She will be sentenced in February 2018.

According to The Minneapolis Star Tribune, the deal allows the 20-year-old mother of two to serve 30 days per year in jail for the next three years. She then may be able to serve the rest of her sentence on electronic home monitoring.

In addition to prison, Perez was given 10 years of supervised probation and she’s been banned from owning firearms for life. She also may not profit in any way from the video recordings of Ruiz’s shooting.

Gossip On This first reported the tragic shooting in June. Seeking internet fame, a planned stunt for YouTube involved Perez shooting Ruiz in the chest while he held a thick encyclopedia, hoping the book would stop the bullet.

“We were doing a YouTube video, and it went wrong. Please hurry up. … My God, hurry up, please!” Perez exclaimed during the 911 call. “It’s all on recording.”

Ruiz convinced Perez to do the stunt after he practiced shooting similar thick books that successfully stopped bullets. Perez teased the stunt on Twitter hours before Ruiz was fatally shot.

The shooting was captured on multiple video cameras, however, the footage has not been released. Ruiz was only 22 at the time of his death.

The couple’s three-year-old daughter also witnessed the shooting. Perez was also pregnant at the time; she has since given birth their second child.

Ruiz and Perez’s began regularly posting YouTube videos in May and gained a loyal following. Their channel is still live and their videos have garnered millions of views since news of the horrific accident went viral over the summer.

Monalisa Perez & Pedro Ruiz: Woman Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter After Shooting & Killing Boyfriend In YouTube Stunt Gone Wrong is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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Mystikal Pleads Not Guilty to Rape & Kidnapping Charges, Still Being Held On $3 Million Bond

Mystikal has pleaded not guilty to rape and kidnapping charges.

According to KSLA, the rapper, born Michael Lawrence Tyler, pleaded not guilty on Monday (Dec. 18) to the alleged assault that took place at a Shreveport casino in October 2016. He faces one count each of first-degree rape and second-degree kidnapping.

The 46-year-old has been held in the Caddo Correctional Center since he turned himself in to authorities in August. His bond is currently set at $3 million. However, he hopes to get it reduced at his next court date, scheduled for January 18th.

Not many details regarding the case have been released to the public. What we do know is the Shreveport Police Sex Crimes Unit issued a warrant for Mystikal in August based on DNA evidence and the victims’ and witnesses’ statements.

The date and location of the alleged assault coincide with a concert the Louisiana native performed during his Legends of Southern Hip Hop tour in 2016.

Two other people have also been arrested and charged in connection to the case. Averweone Holman, 26, faces the same charges as Mystikal and Tenichia Wafford, 42, is charged with one count of obstruction of justice. They are also being held at Caddo Correctional Center.

Mystikal pleaded guilty to sexual battery 2003 after forcing a woman to perform oral sex on him. After serving six years in prison, he was released in 2010 and registered as a sex offender.

Mystikal Pleads Not Guilty to Rape & Kidnapping Charges, Still Being Held On $3 Million Bond is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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New Couple Alert: Karrueche Tran & Victor Cruz Spotted Holding Hands in Los Angeles

Rumored couple Karrueche Tran and Victor Cruz have finally been spotted out together. The two were caught holding hands while on their way to a lunch date in Los Angeles on Saturday (Dec. 16).

For about a month, it’s been speculated that the two were dating. But this is the first time the actress and NFL star have been photographed together (with PDA). A source tells Us Weekly the two aren’t exclusive, but they do want to see where their relationship goes.

“They are dating and have been for about a month now. They really like each other and are trying to make it work and see where it goes. They were and have been friends for a while and she was at his private birthday dinner in November. They aren’t exclusive yet, but it’s definitely in the works.”

A separate source tells the magazine that Tran and Cruz have been hooking up “for a long time.” Unfortunately, their busy schedules have never allowed a relationship to grow. Now, Victor is not playing on a team this season and Tran has some free time.

“Victor and Karrueche have been hooking up for a long time. The timing was just never right and they were never in the same place at the same time. Now she has a lot more free time and for the time being so does he, so they are doing their best to make things work. She’s super into him and he’s head over heels for her. It’s adorable and she’s loving it.”

Tran was last linked to Quavo from Migos back in April. However, the fling didn’t last long. And of course, she had a tumultuous relationship with Chris Brown, who she attempted to file a permanent restraining order against earlier this year.

One of Us Weekly’s sources say Tran and Cruz will be spending New Year’s together. Let’s hope this new relationship is much healthier for the 29-year-old actress.

New Couple Alert: Karrueche Tran & Victor Cruz Spotted Holding Hands in Los Angeles is a post from: Gossip On This – Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

 

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