5 things to know for July 26: Death penalty, Jeffrey Epstein, Equifax

Posted at 4:17 AM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 06:17:31-04

Hitting up Starbucks this morning? The company’s sales just reached an all-time high, thanks to a slew of growth strategies like new recipes and cafe concepts. Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Death penalty

After 16 years without an execution, the federal death penalty is being reinstated in the US. Yesterday, Attorney General William Barr directed the Bureau of Prisons to schedule the execution of five inmates after adopting an updated execution protocol. The move represents a dramatic reversal in the recent federal use of capital punishment. President Donald Trump has taken on the issue in the past and repeatedly promised to “bring back the death penalty.” The executions are supposed to begin later this year, but they’ll probably be delayed by legal challenges. There are currently 62 inmates on federal death row, and about 2,600 on death row in the 29 states where capital punishment is legal.

2. Jeffrey Epstein

Newly-incarcerated financier and accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was found injured in his jail cell, authorities revealed Thursday. Epstein had marks on his neck, according to law enforcement officials, who also said it wasn’t clear if the wounds were self-inflicted or the result of an assault. Epstein told authorities he was beaten up Tuesday and was called a child predator, but he has been placed on suicide watch. The 66-year-old is awaiting trial on one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking. He has pleaded not guilty. Epstein’s arrest sent shockwaves through the political sphere, since the financier had hobnobbed with the political elite, including Trump and Bill Clinton, for years. Trump’s former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta, who had arranged for a plea deal for Epstein under similar charges in 2007, resigned after Epstein’s arrest earlier this month.

3. Equifax

Credit reporting agency Equifax is preparing to shell out $700 million in compensation following a massive data breach in 2017 that exposed the personal information of 150 million people. It’s the largest settlement ever paid in a data breach, and if you were one of the people affected, you may be entitled to a cut. In addition to reimbursing people who purchased credit monitoring services after the breach, and paying civil penalties, the Federal Trade Commission has ordered Equifax to change the way it handles private user data.  For example, the company will have to adjust its information security protocols, including annual assessments of security risks. The 2017 data breach prompted the resignation of Equifax CEO Richard Smith and spurred investigations by federal regulators and multiple states attorneys general. The company is also facing a number of civil lawsuits.

4. Migrant shipwreck

Up to 150 migrants are feared dead after a shipwreck off the Libyan coast yesterday. Officials say there were about 300 people aboard the vessel, which was making its way from the Libyan port of Al-Khums across the Mediterranean to Europe. Such a sea journey is short but treacherous. The UN Refugee Agency says more than 600 migrants have lost their lives on the Mediterranean this year, and if the number climbs, 2019 could be the sixth year in a row in which more than 1,000 migrants perished in those waters. Thousands pour across Libya’s borders each year, fleeing violence in the North African nation. Recently, increased violence in the capital city of Tripoli has made the situation more desperate.

5. Boxers

In a tragic coincidence, two professional boxers have died this week. Yesterday, Argentine boxer Hugo Santillan died after being injured in a Saturday fight. Santillan passed out after the fight and was admitted to a Buenos Aires hospital, where he was diagnosed with successive kidney failure. He never regained consciousness. The 23-year-old’s death comes just days after the death of Russian boxer Maxim Dadashev. The 28-year-old Dadashev died Tuesday in Maryland after a Friday night fight. Dadashev’s trainer stopped the fight after the 11th round, but Dadashev had to be helped out of the ring and started to lose consciousness before he reached the dressing room. He underwent emergency brain surgery for a subdural hematoma, but passed away days later. The Russian Boxing Federation has announced it is opening an investigation into Dadashev’s death, while the World Boxing Federation offered its “deepest condolences” following Santillan’s death.


President Trump appeared in front of a doctored seal with Russian and golf imagery 

Yeah… someone definitely got fired for this.

Petition to move date of Halloween to the weekend gains steam

There goes your excuse for skipping the neighborhood costume party.

How vulnerable are the undersea cables that power the internet?

This feels like something you’d think about when you’re relaxing in the shower and your brain suddenly decides to give you anxiety.

An 11-year-old lost his livestock title after his lamb failed a drug test 

Mary had a little lamb who was swole on PEDs. 

Man surprises wife with cake shaped like an Amazon delivery box 

Did he pack it in an Amazon delivery box too? It’s Amazon boxes all the way down!



The number of cyclists who have died in New York City this year. After the city’s 17th death, Mayor Bill de Blasio called the situation an “emergency” and announced a $58.4 million plan to enhance bike safety.



“It may not come as a shock that he appears loyal to Islam. The question is: can he be both loyal to Islam and loyal to the United States?”

Monica Crowley, who was appointed by Trump last week as the top spokeswoman at the Treasury Department. Crowley’s appointment is drawing criticism because she has a history of supporting conspiracy theories about former President Barack Obama. Crowley, a former radio host, columnist and Fox News personality, claimed in a 2010 blog post that President Obama was a Muslim who supported “the enemy.”


Wake up, hooman

We’ve made it to Friday, so here’s a video of cats being the alarm clocks we never asked for. (Click here to view)