PORT ORCHARD — A judge in Kitsap County on Monday found probable cause to detain a 17-year-old boy under investigation in the death and sexual assault of a 6-year-old Washington girl.Prosecutors in Kitsap County filed court documents Monday saying they had sufficient evidence to hold Gabriel Gaeta on first-degree murder with aggravating circumstances, felony murder and first-degree rape of a child.Judge Kevin Hull set bail at $1 million. Hull also granted prosecutors’ request for a mental-health evaluation for Gaeta.Prosecutors said they want that competency evaluation before filing charges against the teen. They are pursuing the case in Kitsap County Superior Court, where Gaeta is expected to be tried as an adult.The teen arrived in court with a black jacket over his head. He spoke softly as he answered the judge’s question. His next court date was set for Aug. 28.A message left with Gaeta’s lawyer Monday afternoon was not immediately returned.The parents of Jenise Wright sat in the second row in the courtroom.James Wright, Jenise’s father, told The Seattle Times the suspect was a close friend of the family and had visited their home many times.
Happy New Year!Earlier this week, I read an interesting article exploring whether 2016 will finally see the end of the office email.The idea of banning email for work has been floating around for a few years now, but several organisations have now begun to bite the bullet and move to alternative forms of communication.I have to admit the idea is certainly appealing (not least when I returned from holiday at the end of last year to find close to 2,000 emails waiting for me in my inbox!)As technology means employees are increasingly always switched on, the temptation to check for email or read messages as soon as they ping into their inbox can adversely impact productivity. We all know the theory about only checking email at designated times during the day, but, in practice, how many of us actually achieve this?But what would the demise of email as we know it mean for workplace communications strategies? There is no denying that email is a quick and easy way of sending messages to a mass audience with the minimum of effort.But in this era of information overload and ‘death by email’, how many truly engage with email messages as intended by the sender? Are there more effective ways of ensuring employees sit up and take notice? Is it time for employers to consider other communication methods, such as Whatsapp or other messenger apps or online channels?Or should employers be considering quirkier methods altogether as a means of grabbing employees’ attention, even if it’s only in the first instance before returning to more traditional methods to communicate the details?On days when my inbox runs away from me, the idea of not having to deal with email is certainly tempting. Yet given how entrenched it has become, not only in the business world but also in everyday life, for alternatives to become the norm, a significant shift in culture and mindset may be needed.Debbie Lovewell-Tuck Editor Tweet: @DebbieLovewell
Autumn Statement 2016: The tax advantages awarded under employee shareholder status (ESS) will be abolished from December 2016.The tax advantages that are linked to ESS-provided shares will be abolished for arrangements entered into on, or after, 1 December 2016, with the status itself being closed to new arrangements at the next legislative opportunity.The change was announced by Chancellor Philip Hammond today (Wednesday 23 November 2016) in his Autumn Statement speech.The change reflects evidence that suggests the employee shareholder status, also known as shares for rights, was primarily being used as a tax planning vehicle for high-earners, rather than as a way of supporting a more flexible workforce.The ESS was introduced in September 2013 and enables an employee to give up certain employment rights in exchange for shares worth at least £2,000 from their employer or employer’s parent organisation.Under the current arrangement, no tax or national insurance contributions are paid on the first £2,000 of the shares awarded, and no capital gains tax is paid on the first £100,000 of gain in value as long as the shares were worth no more than £50,000 at the time the award was made.Colin Kendon, partner at law firm Bird and Bird, said: “The abolition will leave many [organisations] that do not satisfy the enterprise management incentive (EMI) plan conditions with no government-backed qualifying share plan.“Many of these [organisations] used shares for rights to reward management for genuine commercial growth; [organisations] in this position are likely to use ‘growth share’ arrangements in the future as the next best alternative.”Mark Quinn, head UK talent business at Mercer, added: “It is regrettable that the Chancellor will be removing the tax advantages of ESS. ESS is well regarded and, particularly in young [organisations], viewed as a mechanism for increasing employee engagement by making them shareholders while improving the flexibility of the employment proposition.“Removing the tax advantage will undoubtedly reduce the take-up of such schemes. This runs counter to the government’s stated intention to improve employee representation or engagement as a means of improving corporate governance and with evidence of employee-owned businesses performing more strongly.”Phil Hall, head of public affairs and policy at the Association of Accounting Technicians, said: “The decision to scrap the tax advantages of the employee owner status is long overdue. There are a wide range of successful employee share schemes that do not require the sacrifice of employee rights and these have always been a more appropriate choice. Having highlighted the potential for abuse before they were introduced and continued to do so ever since, it is obviously pleasing that the government have finally listened and taken action.”
EXCLUSIVE: Insurance organisation Admiral has seen more than 200 employees receive eyecare e-vouchers following the introduction of a new eyecare benefit for its 6,300 UK-based employees.The new eyecare benefit, provided by Specsavers Corporate Eyecare, was introduced in April 2017. In order to inform staff about the new benefit, Admiral held a series of wellbeing events, together with the provider, in May 2017. These events were designed to promote the eyecare scheme, inform employees about how they could access the benefit, and what they were entitled to under Admiral’s eyecare policy.The eyecare scheme, which is available to all employees, helps Admiral fulfil its statutory requirements by providing staff with a free eye test as well as glasses if they are needed solely for display screen equipment (DSE) use. The scheme also includes an additional £20 contribution on glasses from specified ranges. Employees can put this towards glasses or sunglasses of their choosing, which do not have to be for DSE use. Employees can also share up to three e-vouchers a year with their friends and family.During the wellbeing events, staff were able to book optician appointments online and e-vouchers were electronically issued to employees requiring eyecare. Staff from local Specsavers stores also attended the wellbeing events held at Admiral’s sites to answer any technical eyecare questions.The eyecare benefit is also promoted on the staff intranet, and new joiners to the organisation will be told about the scheme during the induction process.Heather John, HR administrator at Admiral, said: “We are aware of how important it is to communicate regarding the benefits we provide. The wellbeing events Specsavers has held for us have been very useful in providing a personal touch and [it] has also contributed to our internal magazine to ensure that the information reaches far and wide.”
Employee Benefits Live 2017: Employers should ensure they invest in their people as much as in new technologies in order to create an empowering organisational culture and a strong business environment.In the closing keynote address at Employee Benefits Live 2017 in a session titled ‘How can HR lead the workplace and digital transformations?’, Yuval Dvir (pictured), head of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) online partnerships at Google, said: “Technology can only be as good as people. People are still as important, if not more important, than technology and I think in the past decades we’ve been focusing too much on technology and less on people.”During the session, Dvir explained the influential impact that senior leaders and managers have on shaping organisational culture, and how this culture is vital in enabling employees to feel secure and autonomous enough to be innovative and creative to deliver business goals. “People also have a constraint or a restraint in a way; they can only be as good as the culture,” he said. “If it’s open enough, if it’s providing the physical, psychological safety, if [employees] are free to speak up, empowerment and all those things are crucial for the culture. Culture is derived from the leadership.”However, modern workplace practices, such as flexible-working arrangements, can dislodge how managers feel about their own chain of command, because these arrangements can remove the level of control that some managers are used to. Instead, managers should be the ones to initiate flexibility. Dvir said: “[Employers] have to lead by example, and not just the person at the top. That bit really needs to trickle down to managers and that’s a difficult thing to do because, nowadays with the demands and the requirements of employers, it takes a lot of the control that managers used to have.”What people expect and want from their jobs has also transformed, with many employees swapping a work=to-live mentality for an ethos based on having purpose and meaning within the workplace. This leads to questions around the validity of the traditional nine-to-five working day and whether employees should instead be compensated for work that they perform outside of these hours.Employers should, therefore, avoid categorising their people. Being able to create a well-balanced team with a positive culture is more important than the individual employees who comprise the team, said Dvir. “When we talk about performance review, we talk about individuals, not teams,” he said. “How the team operates and the culture of the team is way more important than who is on the team because as humans, we like to pigeon-hole everybody. We like to categorise everyone. The key thing that’s missing over here is context.”For example, certain employees may be categorised as one personality type in some situations, but have different characteristics when dealing with another situation, which should be taken into consideration when forming teams.“Nothing is done in isolation,” said Dvir. “Everything is really well connected and that’s an important thing because context in the workplace, context when we talk about employee benefits or anything else, needs to be taken into consideration because if [employers] can forget one variable or another, then [they] miss out on everything.”
Investment banking organisation Morgan Stanley has introduced a near-site workplace nursery benefit for 5,000 employees based at Canary Wharf, London and 1,000 staff in Glasgow.The new family-friendly benefit, provided by Bright Horizons, was launched in August 2018 as part of a broader wellness strategy that aims to support Morgan Stanley’s 56,000 global employees and their families, both in and out of the workplace. This includes helping to support working parents when they return after having a child.The new benefit enables parents to apply for nursery places at childcare facilities at Canada Square and Columbus Courtyard in London, near to Morgan Stanley’s Canary Wharf office, and at Spectrum Early Learning and Childcare in Glasgow, located close to its operating site there.Available for all Morgan Stanley employees via the firm’s salary sacrifice scheme, the workplace nursery benefit is for children aged between three months and five years. The nurseries are typically open between 7.30am and 6.30pm each working day.Parents are able to visit their child at any point during the day to take them out for a walk or spend time with them in dedicated breastfeeding rooms and soft play zones. The near-site workplace nurseries have facilities such as indoor playgrounds and climbing frames and toddler-sized cookery stations. Meals and snacks are cooked on-site, with menus checked by external nutritionists to ensure they fulfil the Voluntary Food and Drink Guidelines set in England and Scotland.The workplace nurseries benefit was launched to employees using an email campaign. This included communications that reminded staff about the firm’s existing family-friendly benefits.Tamsin Rowe, head of human resources, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at Morgan Stanley, said: “Morgan Stanley is a leading advocate for family-friendly workplaces and is strongly committed to supporting working parents through a variety of programmes. We are delighted to offer another resource to enable our employees to better balance work and family.”
Larry was charged with count of strong armed robbery, impersonating a police officer, indecent exposure and battery.“I want to thank the community for giving us this tip that ultimately led to the apprehension of this person. This shows how a community can make a difference when they partner with police,” Coral Gables Police Chief Edward Hudak said. Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. PINECREST, FLA. (WSVN) – A Miami man is behind bars after being accused of pretending to be a police officer.Police arrested 32-year-old Gil Larry in Pinecrest, Thursday, after an anonymous tip was made to Coral Gables Police.Officers said he’s the man who was caught on surveillance video back on July 3rd. Police said he told a woman to lean against a parked car so he could forcefully pat her down. Then, he robbed her and exposed himself to her.According to Coral Gables Police, the victim was walking along the 4000 block of Aurora Street, just off Bird Road and two blocks from the upscale Shops at Merrick Park when the subject approached just before 5:15 a.m.Investigators said the subject proceeded to take advantage of the situation by identifying himself as a police officer. “He patted down that female, and while doing so, he exposed his genitals and deprived her of her property,” said Coral Gables Police Officer Lauren Poole.Police said the subject, wearing mostly black and carrying a two-tone backpack, forcibly took the victim’s valuables. At first, the woman did not run because the man threatened her, warning her that he had a gun.Moments later, the woman made the brave decision to take off running southbound on Aurora Street. The man then fled the scene on the opposite direction on a longboard skateboard.
Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – A busy South Beach roadway was shutdown Friday morning as Memorial Day weekend arrives.According to Miami Beach Police, Ocean Drive will be shutdown as the Memorial Day festivities take place on the ground and in the air.On Friday morning, police blocked off traffic from Ocean Drive to Sixth and 15th streets. This shut down will last until Monday at 7 a.m., police said.The annual “Urban Beach Week” will take place in the area, which is expected to draw a young crowd. The event is also expected to attract some of the biggest names in hip-hop.Miami Beach is also hoping to attract families to join the fun during the other various events, including this year’s Air and Sea Show.Throughout the weekend, police announced additional changes to traffic in the area:Washington Avenue will only be open southbound from Fifth to 15th streetsCollins Avenue will only be open northbound from Fifth to 17th streets
NORTH MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Burglars broke into a North Miami Beach Costco, Tuesday morning, by drilling a hole into its back wall.7SkyForce HD flew over the scene, near Northeast 146th Street and Biscayne Boulevard, where workers were seen cleaning up the mess made by the burglars.The subjects reportedly gained entry to the Costco by drilling a hole in the back of the store, near a dumpster. Once inside, the burglars stole an unknown amount of items.Police have begun their investigation.If you have any information on this burglary, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.