‘Go back’ spray-painted on Alberta family’s garage door; trucks lit on fire

A man who’s lived near Kitscoty, Alta. for nearly six years awoke Wednesday morning to find something horrible written on his garage door: “Go back.”

Abdul Mian said he was very shocked to see the disturbing graffiti scrawled outside his home.

“We’re lost. We’re still in shock. We still think it didn’t happen.”

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    Calgary police treat graffiti as possible hate crime

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  • Cold Lake mosque hit by vandals

    Going by his nickname Shahzad, he posted photos of the incident on his Facebook page. In addition to the hateful message, he opened up about another frightening incident on Sunday.

    “We were sleeping and all of a sudden we were woken up,” Mian told Global News. “Somebody was at the door and my daughter woke me up saying, ‘somebody’s at the door ringing the doorbell.’ So we went outside and our Fire Chief Kevin from Kitscoty was there telling me, ‘your trucks are on fire and they’re gone.’”

    RCMP confirmed at least one semi truck was burned to the ground. The trucks – used in the oil field – were the family’s livelihood.

    WATCH: RAW VIDEO: Truck fire near Kitscoty, Alta. leaves family startled

    Mian, who moved from Pakistan to Canada in 1997, has lived in the community for five-and-a-half years and doesn’t know why someone would do this.

    He said he hasn’t slept in days and that his children are afraid.

    “Very sad to see that and very much disturbed to see this,” Mian wrote.

    “Worked really hard for [the] past five-and-a-half years and still working with 100 per cent honesty and ethics.”

    Mian says he loves his community but doesn’t know if he’ll stay there now.

    “Every Canadian has always loved us and we don’t think whoever did this is a real true Canadian.”

    Mian said he’s already painted over the graffiti and has put up a Canadian flag.

    Abdul (Shahzad) Mian posted this photo of fire crews outside his home.

    Credit: Facebook/Shahzad Mian

    Abdul (Shahzad) Mian posted this photo of his vandalized garage door on Facebook.

    Credit: Facebook/Shahzad Mian

    Mian has painted over the words ‘go back’ on his garage door.

    Shallima Maharaj, Global News

    His Facebook post has already garnered a lot of support.

    A profile associated with PC MLA Ric McIver posted this comment: “People need to think before they act. This does not represent our province. It only represents one or a few jerks. Thank you for contributing. You deserve a lot better and the people that did these things deserve jail.”

    The Alberta Muslim Public Affairs Council (AMPAC) said it “condemns recent Islamophobic incidents in Kitscoty and Calgary.”

    The group said vandals set fire to two trucks belonging to Mian just a few days after someone sprayed the words “go back” on his garage.

    Two of Abdul Mian’s trucks are seen with visible signs of fire damage. In the background, Mian’s garage is seen with a Canadian flag where the graffiti was.

    Shallima Maharaj/ Global News

    One of Abdul Mian’s trucks is seen with visible signs of fire damage.

    Shallima Maharaj/ Global News

    It also said two fathers in Calgary are frightened for their kids after the men – both Syrian refugees – say they were assaulted over the weekend in the Forest Lawn neighbourhood.

    “AMPAC calls on local police units to investigate these attacks as potential hate crimes,” a statement from the group read. “AMPAC condemns these acts as they only serve to victimize community members.

    “Such attitudes impact on Canada’s multicultural fabric. Canadians should stand firmly against hatred of any kind.”

    The RCMP has not officially deemed this a hate crime, but the investigation is still active.

    “We haven’t ruled out that it may be a hate crime or not,” RCMP Sgt. Juan Huss said. “It’s just something that we’ve got to investigate without any bias, so we’ll go where the evidence leads us to and based on that, we’ll be able to determine whether this was part of a hate crime as well.”

    “For them (vandalism incidents) to happen in such a short time – back to back – I do feel that they were connected,” Mian said.

    READ MORE: Hate Crimes Unit investigating after ‘Leave Canada’ spray-painted on Edmonton Sikh temple

    Last January, a Sikh temple in south Edmonton was vandalized with the words “Leave Canada.” The hate crimes unit was called in to investigate.

    READ MORE: ‘We’re proud of Cold Lakers and proud of Canada’: Mayor on community support following vandalism at local mosque

    In October 2014, a mosque in Cold Lake was targeted, and the words ‘go home’ were spray painted on it. The community gathered together to scrub off the vandalism.

    Kitscoty is about 24 kilometres west of Lloydminister, which is on the Alberta-Saskatchewan border.

    Follow @Emily_Mertz

Astro Corner: What’s up in the May sky

May 6–7: Eta Aquarids

This month we get treated to Eta Aquarid meteor shower.

Though the best spot for this shower is in the southern tropics (as the radiant, or area in the sky from which they seem to appear will be higher in the sky), we can still expect to see about 10 to 30 meteors per hour.

The Eta Aquarid meteor shower is active from April 19 to May 26.

NASA

If you want to catch them for yourself,  you can just grab a blanket, dress warmly, and lie on the grass. However, the best time is just before dawn, so don’t be too disappointed if you don’t see very many during the night.

The peak occurs on the night of May 6 to 7. The good news is that the moon will only just be coming out of its new phase, so the sky will be dark to catch even faint meteors.

May 9: Transit of Mercury

When a planet passes in front of the sun (or a moon passes in front of a planet), astronomers call it a transit. On May 9, Mercury, the first planet out from the sun, will transit the sun.

READ MORE: Transit of Mercury: How to see the May 9 event across Canada

From our perspective here on Earth, only two planets can ever pass in front of the sun: Mercury and Venus. The last time we had a transit of Venus was in 2012. The next transit will be in 2117.

WATCH: The Mercury transit

While transits of Venus are rare (they occur once every eight years and then don’t occur for another 105), that’s not the case for Mercury.

The last time Mercury dotted the sun was in 2006 and the next one will occur in 2019.

May 14: Waxing gibbous moon near Jupiter

Jupiter, the mighty king of the solar system, has been gracing our sky for the past few months. You can easily spot it as the brightest object in the night sky.

The moon and Jupiter will only be separated by about 3 degrees.

Courtesy Stellarium

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    On this night, you’ll be able to spot the moon, a waxing gibbous (a moon is waxing when it’s headed towards its full phase; it’s waning when it’s headed towards its new phase), together with Jupiter.

    The pair actually rise in the daylight hours, around 2 p.m. So when the sun sets, they will be high in the southern sky.

    May 21: The full moon, Mars, Saturn and Antares

    This month’s full moon has a lot of company.

    On this night,  you can spot the moon, Saturn, Mars and the bright red star Antares.

    You can find them in the southeastern sky around 11 p.m. Saturn will lie southwest of the moon, while Mars will lie to the southeast. The red supergiant star, Antares, part of the summer constellation of Scorpius, will lie south of the moon.

    The full moon, Mars, Saturn and the red supergiant star Antares as they appear in the sky on May 21.

    Courtesy Stellarium

    May 30: Mars closest to Earth

    No, it won’t appear as big as the full moon (nor will it ever).

    On May 30, Mars will be about 75.3 million kilometres from Earth. This happens because both planets don’t have perfectly circular orbits. Instead, they are elliptical, bringing the pair close together and farther apart at times.

    This shows the apparent size of Mars in 2016 as compared to the moon.The red planet will appear brightest from May 18-June 3.

    NASA/JPL-Caltech

    You may even notice a rise in the planet’s brightness from May 18 to June 3. By the middle of June Mars will become a bit fainter as our two planets move away from each other.

    Mars makes its closest approach once every 26 months. The next one will be on July 31, 2018.

    In 2003, Mars made the closest approach to Earth in 60,000 years. The next time that happens will be 2287.

    Check back next month for what’s up in the June sky.

    Follow @NebulousNikki

Your Saskatchewan – Regina: April 2016

Every day on Global Regina at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m., we feature a viewer submitted photo for Your Saskatchewan.

Submit your photo with a description and location via Facebook, 老域名怎么购买 or by email to [email protected]老域名出售.

Photos should be added to the email as an attachment, in jpeg format and at least 920 pixels wide.

April 1: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Notanee Bourassa of the Stony Beach grain elevator.

April 4: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Lori McNaughton near Caron, SK.

April 5: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Loral Antonenko near Biggar, SK. This friendly cow moose wanted to join in on breakfast!

April 6: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Kayla Brennan of mini horses near Balgonie, Sk.

April 7: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Bill Allen.

April 8: This Your Saskatchewan photo of a flock of geese was taken by Lisa Rachul.

April 11: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Jerry Stevens.

April 12: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken near Cypress Hills by Andy Goodson.

April 13: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Don Hoffman in Regina, SK.

April 14: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Marissa Alarcon near Marengo, SK.

April 15: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Brittany Hislop near Arcola, SK.

April 18: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Ryan Wunsch.

April 19: This Your Saskatchewan photo is of Wascana Park taken by Cheryl Dunning.

April 20: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Colleen Clavelle.

April 21: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Tina Lindsay.

April 22: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Stu Cram.

April 25: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken at Regina Beach by Shannon Waugh.

April 26: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken near Glentworth, SK by Michele Talia.

April 27: This Your Saskatchewan was taken by Lori Bote.

April 28: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken near Moose Jaw by Jenny Andrew.

April 29: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Chris Attrell.

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‘What that n****r deserved’: Man scheduled to be executed in Georgia had ‘racist, unfair’ trial

WARNING: The story below contains graphic language. Reader discretion is advised.

ATLANTA – The State Board of Pardons and Paroles on Monday declined to grant clemency for a Georgia death row inmate scheduled to die this week.

Kenneth Fults, 47, is set to be put to death at 7 p.m. Tuesday by injection of the barbiturate pentobarbital at the state prison in Jackson. Fults pleaded guilty in 1997 to killing 19-year-old Cathy Bounds in January 1996, and a jury sentenced him to die.

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The parole board on Monday held a clemency hearing for Fults that wasn’t open to the public or the media. As is its custom, the parole board did not give a reason for denying clemency, saying only that its members considered the facts and circumstances in the case. The parole board is the only entity that can commute a death sentence in Georgia.

In a clemency petition submitted to the parole board, Fults’ lawyers detailed a childhood characterized by neglect and abuse at the hands of heavy-drinking family members and his mother’s string of violent boyfriends.

READ MORE: Pope Francis appeals for global end to capital punishment

“Throughout his life, Kenneth Fults was abandoned and rejected by those who were supposed to care for him, ridiculed and dismissed by those who could have helped him, and beaten up and down by family members and strangers alike,” his lawyers wrote.

Fults has an intellectual disability that means he “functions in the lowest 1 per cent of the population,” meaning he has insufficient reasoning abilities, lacks impulse control and fails to learn from experience, the clemency petition says.

He is extremely remorseful, having told Bounds’ mother at trial that he would trade places with Bounds if he could, and took responsibility for his actions by entering a guilty plea, his lawyers wrote.

Fults’ trial lawyer failed to tell the jury during sentencing that Fults is intellectually disabled and didn’t go into the details of his rough childhood, his lawyers wrote. Jurors quoted in the clemency petition say the trial lawyer slept through parts of the sentencing and didn’t seem prepared or interested in protecting the best interests of his client.

Death Penalty Laws by State | InsideGov

His death sentence is unfair because one of the jurors who sentenced him to die was motivated by racial prejudice, Fults’ lawyers wrote.

During jury selection, Thomas Buffington told the judge and lawyers on both sides he felt no racial prejudice. He was selected for the jury that sentenced Fults to death.

An investigator who was part of Fults’ legal team reached out to Buffington eight years later to ask about his experience on the jury.

“Once he pled guilty, I knew I would vote for the death penalty because that’s what that (N-word) deserved,” Buffington said, according to an affidavit signed April 12, 2005.

Buffington died in 2014.

Though many of these arguments have already been rejected by various courts, Fults’ lawyers say the parole board isn’t bound by the same rigid rules and ask the board to commute his sentence to life without parole.

READ MORE: Alberta man on death row in Montana could benefit from Liberal policy

Fults’ lawyers also have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to halt his execution and to consider his claims that his death sentence is unconstitutional because of Buffington’s alleged racial prejudice.

Prosecutors have said Fults killed Bounds during a weeklong crime spree that started when he stole two guns during burglaries. After trying unsuccessfully to kill his former girlfriend’s new boyfriend with one of the stolen guns, Fults broke into the trailer next to his, where Bounds lived with her boyfriend.

Bounds, who was home alone, pleaded for her life, but Fults forced her into the bedroom, wrapped electrical tape around her head, put her face-down on the bed, put a pillow over her head and shot her five times in the back of the head, prosecutors said.

Fults would be the fourth man executed in Georgia this year. Another man, Daniel Lucas, is scheduled to die April 27.