Brianna Smith

Brianna Smith is a freelance writer and editor in Southwest Michigan. A graduate of Grand Valley State University, Brianna has a passion for politics, social issues, education, science, and more. When she’s not writing, she enjoys the simple life with her husband, daughter, and son.


Bill Cosby Sexual Assault Trial Begins

The trial between Commonwealth v. Bill Cosby is in its third day, having started on Monday in Norristown, Pennsylvania. For those who don’t know, the proceedings involve “Cosby’s alleged sexual assault of a woman named Andrea Constand, in 2004.” According to USA today, “Cosby is being tried on three counts of aggravated indecent assault stemming from an encounter with Constand at his nearby home in 2004. She says he drugged her to the point of near-paralysis and then assaulted her as she lay helpless on a couch.”


Is ABC News Liable for Defamation Over ‘Pink Slime’ Report?

Have you heard of pink slime? Well it turns out that a “defamation trial over an ABC News report about so-called pink slime, a once-common ingredient in ground beef,” began on Monday after a South Dakota meat processing company claimed the news report “wreaked havoc on its business after it aired in 2012.” But what is pink slime?


Settlement Reached Between Beaufort Inn and Bride Who Was Attacked On Eve of Her Wedding

According to police, Gretchen Rhyan Mazur-Williamson was “badly beaten in a rented cottage at the Beaufort Inn in April 2009” after her assailant “entered her room through a broken rear window and waited for her to return.” As a result of the attack, the woman sued the inn back in 2012, accusing the owner, Associated Luxury Inns of Beaufort, of gross negligence for “failing to adopt and utilize adequate and proper security and emergency procedures for guests.” Now, years later, the Beaufort Inn has agreed to “an undisclosed settlement.”


Family of Student Hit By NYPD Cop Car Agrees To $500K Settlement

On Feb. 21, 2013, Ryo Oyamada, a student at the time, was “struck and killed by a police car while crossing 40th Ave. between 10th and 11th streets in Long Island City.” Now, after all this time, his family and the city have agreed to “settle their federal lawsuit” for $500,000.


Hepatitis A Contamination Prompts Frozen Tuna Recall

Fans of tuna beware, many restaurants and hotels throughout Southern California have been hit by a “frozen tuna recall involving steaks and cubes that tested positive for hepatitis A.” While the tuna hasn’t been linked to any illnesses so far, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are urging anyone who has consumed the fish and hasn’t been vaccinated yet to promptly seek medical attention.


Lakewood Sheriff’s Shooting Lawsuit Settled for $3.3M

As a result of the tragic fatal shooting of a 31-year-old man in front of his Lakewood home back in 2015, the Board of Supervisors voted to pay $3.3 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the man’s family. At the moment, few details about the incident have been released to the public, though according to documents, “the deputies claim their actions were reasonable under the circumstances.” Additionally, according to documents, the settlement was agreed to “based on the risks and uncertainties of litigation.”


Rosebud Restaurants Agrees To Pay $1.9M Settlement In Discrimination Case

Discrimination has been in the news a lot lately, and restaurants aren’t immune. Just recently Rosebud Restaurants agreed to pay $1.9 million “and establish a program to hire African-Americans” as part of a settlement agreement. The settlement itself is the result of a 4-year federal lawsuit “that charged the Chicago-based restaurant chain with discriminating against some black job applicants.”


Mentally Ill Woman Awarded $30K Settlement After Being Dragged Down Courthouse Hallway

A case involving a mentally ill woman and the Broward Sheriff’s Office was recently settled for $30,000. The case itself began when the mentally ill woman, Dasyl Rios, was “dragged across a courthouse hallway by a Broward sheriff’s detention deputy” back in early 2015. The horrible incident sparked national headlines at the time, and was made more horrible when cellphone footage was released showing Rios being “dragged by the shackles around her ankles by Christopher Johnson, a detention deputy.” On the video, she was heard screaming, “You’re hurting me!”


Kroger Co. Recalls Dessert Cups Sold In 17 States

In addition to its recent Simple Truth dry roasted macadamia nut recall amid listeria concerns, Kroger Co. has now issued a widespread recall of “a certain food item because it could pose a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction in some consumers.”


CPSC Recalls Douglas Plush Toys

Yet another recall notice has been issued due to a potential choking hazard, this time involving Douglas Plush Toys, a popular children’s toy. So far the recall notice includes about 25,000 of the toys, according to the U.S. Consumer Safety Commission. More specifically, the recall includes three different versions of the plush toy, including Chewie the English Bulldog, Oliver the Bear and Charlotte the Fox “sold at specialty toy and gift stores nationwide from July 2014 to April 2017.” The toys have also been distributed “by United Healthcare Children’s Foundation to individuals and organizations.”