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Bouquets & Brickbats 

They get what they deserve

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Troy Simon,

a sophomore at Greater Gentilly High School, has been named one of the top 10 finalists in the "I Am What I Learn" video contest sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education. Simon narrated and created the short film, which tells the story of how he resurrected himself from being an illiterate drug user to a successful high school student who now dreams of becoming a pediatrician. Simon's video was chosen as a finalist from a field of more than 600 entries.



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Capital One

has donated $405,000 in grants to the New Beginnings Schools Foundation and the Capital One University of New Orleans Charter School Networks. The money will fund a variety of childhood educational programs — including the hiring of creative arts instructors, teaching early literacy skills, paying for ACT testing and college application fees, and providing supplemental math instruction — as well as create an adult literacy center in greater New Orleans.



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Constance and Christopher Breithoff,

mother-and-son frauds, pleaded guilty in federal court to buying "bulk" paintings from China and then reselling them as original work of Louisiana artists to customers of their art galleries in Mandeville and the French Quarter. After Christopher made the wholesale purchases, Constance concocted fictional identities and advertised them as paintings from "handpicked local and regional artists." They were fined almost a $1 million, with Christopher receiving a 21-month prison sentence and Constance 18 months.



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NOPD Chief Warren Riley

reduced officer Brian Pollard's suspension from a recommended 80 days to 30 days after a NOPD internal investigation revealed that Pollard and fellow officer Herman Franklin had committed payroll fraud by claiming to have been on duty while they were actually moonlighting off duty. According to The Times-Picayune, Pollard was promoted following the investigation. Apparently Riley has two standards when it comes to discipline: one for favored officers and friends, and one for everybody else.

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