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WJF Press Release: WSB Robbery Foiled.

Official Press Release
Withmore Justice Force

Bank Robbery Frustrated by Judges
10th October, 2102

On the ninth of October at approximately 23:00, bystanders reported disturbances at Withmore Savings Bank central branch on Soma Street in Gold Sector. A solitary Judge unit responded, only to be stunned by a sonic grenade which did no harm to the Law Enforcement Officer, despite knocking out the innocent bystanders.

Response crimes in Gold Sector vary from ten to eighty seconds, in average. The response time for the Judge units called for the altercation in Gold fell within this margin, and soon the gunslinging criminals were surrounded by a small squad of the elite lawmen. Read More

Deadly gunfire broke the hubbub of the streets as the Judges unwielded their firearms and, outnumbered two to one, subdued the criminals, rendering them dead. No civilian casualties were reported.

The Medical Response Team successfully resuscitated the five perpetrators, to be brought into interrogation at the Hall of Justice. Shortly thereafter the identities of the criminals were confirmed, mostly all residents from Red Sector: Jak Din, Epoch Hendricks, Wilco Robbins, and Jason Stettem. An additional perpetrator named Zhang Jei, a former Corporate Security worker, was also caught as he attempted to escape the scene of the crime.

Further forensic investigation concluded that the criminals were working on an underground tunnel that would break into the vault of the bank. However, little did they know that the vault at the time was empty due to protocol procedure in the bank operations. This poses new challenges for the safety of our city, such as the trustworthiness of corporate citizens who could pose a threat of espionage or infiltration, and the infrastucture which connects Red Sector with Gold Sector, issues which are being addressed today. With this in mind, it makes sense that the City is so keen on reporting fellow coworkers who might be consorting with "unsavory individuals".

A total of three high-caliber firearms were confiscated, along with three blades or other melee weapons. Promptly the Citizens were executed and sent to iso-cubes for an indefinite amount of time. This is the first attempted bank robbery in three years for the main branch of Withmore Savings Bank.

The Justice Force commends the labour of Judges Steele, Hart, and Janz for their bravery in the field, as well as the crucial cooperation of our Medical Response Team, the WSB staff, and the citizens who had to endure this tragical experience.

And as always, we remind you to obey the Law at all times, and report all crimes to the Hall of Justice.

What PRI really means for you.

An in-depth look at the merger and its lasting effects.

by Hellcat, Withmore Globe Editor

These past few weeks have seen shifts of titanic proportions in the business world that will have lasting impacts still felt long after you, I, or anyone else under this dome finally punches out. The eleventh hour acquisition of the sinking manufacturing and robotics megacorp Shinohara Heavy Industries, by Skywatch Orbital Research will officially make the newly formed Planetary Resources Incorporated capable of utilizing its own manufacturing and distribution networks to actualize the projects the original research and development megacorp--Skywatch--was stuck farming out to other corporations. Read More

This lack of external reliance slingshots PRI right up into the biggest of the big leagues, allowing them to undertake any number of projects one hundred percent in-house.

What's that mean to the everyday citizen? Mia Tanoko, one of the newly appointed public relations representatives for PRI stationed here in WIthmore, had some things to say on the subject when I called her up.

M.T.: "We're looking at a brighter future, if you'll pardon me trotting out the tired sayings. All of the research potential of Skywatch coupled with Shinohara's resources to build it? Humanity as a whole should be expecting some big changes in the coming decades, that's for sure."

H.: "You mean aside from the fact that we'll have space rocks playing musical chairs as our second moon?"

M.T.: "*laughter* The SAFE fleet - yes, it was intentionally called SAFE, you can all stop asking - is definitely the crown jewel in PRI's brand new portfolio, but if you look at the kinds of things Skywatch and SHI have done independently before today, you'll realize there's some very big potential now that we've joined forces."

H.: "Things that you're not prepared to talk about yet, I understand. Now, many people have pointed out that mergers of this scale usually take months, if not a couple of years, to come together. What prompted the shotgun wedding?"

M.T.: "Our partners on the project were sinking fast, is what. At the time, we at Skywatch didn't want the corporation to be susceptible to an internal takeover or be forced to start selling assets, anything that could have jeopardized the success of the mission or resulted in our people being stranded in deep space. When you see something like this, and you have the means to do something about it, well� Skywatch did the right thing. We kept them alive."

H.: "And what about the leadership? With mergers like this, surely some people won't be seeing it as 'the right thing' when they're being sent home with a pink slip."

M.T.: "*dry laugh* That's a great observation. It's never perfect, but I'd like to think we minimized the negative impact. Of course, former Skywatch leadership assumed controlling roles in top positions. Tabitha Swift is the CEO, just as she was at Skywatch. We of course had to do some internal housekeeping after that unfortunate business with the hostages, but I'd like to think we didn't have to shake things up too hard for it all to fall into place. I won't get into the nitty gritty, but it's safe to say that around ninety percent of the people who had a job with SHI found themselves with jobs when the ink on the merger dried."

Tanoko concluded the interview by stating that the effects of the merger will probably not be immediately noticeable, with changes slowly being rolled out as departments on both sides adjust to the new lay of the land. She stated while they do consider them important, things like rebranding old merchandise, refurnishing the local office and even deciding what to do with Shinohara's deathball team are currently taking a backseat to the completion of the SAFE fleet's second phase.

"I can't tell you when it'll be done," she said in parting. "But you'll know it when you see it, we'll have a second moon."

---

What kind of effects did the events of the SAFE fleet have on people already living in space? Check the Globe over the coming days for interviews with residents of FreeSky, members of the Peacekeeper forces and more.

---

Can you write worth a damn? Do you have an inquisitive mind? Are you not stupid? If the answer to all of these is yes, the Withmore Globe might have a place for you. Gridmail a resume and a sample article to NewsDesk for review.

BREAKING NEWS! Merger of Skywatch and SHI made official.

Planetary Resources Inc. is new cross-industry powerhouse.

As this reporter sits amidst top Skywatch and SHI executives, overseen by UN officials, the ink is drying on what some are calling the largest merger in history, and you�re reading it here first.

Planetary Resources Incorporated has made it�s debut as the newly formed company from these two monolithic titans of industry. Read More

The energy in the boardroom is immeasurable, as the announcement of the continued SAFE fleet project will serve as their spearhead campaign, reaffirming not only another monumental step in human history, but showcasing their prowess as the foremost leaders in innovation.

It is clear to all that this is just the first great step of many to come from the combined resources and unified vision of an idyllic future for mankind. Despite the setbacks of this last week, PRI has forged themselves even stronger than their predecessors, facing all adversity with tenacity and sheer business acumen.

Readers can be assured that the Globe will be your premiere source for coverage of all of PRI�s future accomplishments.

Skywatch makes bid to buy out Shinohara Heavy Industries.

Merger may be floundering megacorp's last hope for survival.

In a statement released by Skywatch officials this morning, the respective company has announced their offer to buy out what they referred to as the �shell of the once great corporation� Shinohara Heavy Industries. Mia Tanoto, Skywatch PR, stated that executives from the highest echelons convened in an emergency meeting to finalize an offer that they considered a charitable and generous proposal to Shinohara.

Their gracious tone was met with resounding applause, as Skywatch�s track record of altruistic action remains firmly crystallized, dating as far back as the construction of Miami Dome. Read More

NLM reporters were given an inside look on deliberations, as all signs indicate that Skywatch is not only more than prepared to follow through, but do not expect SHI to turn down their offer.

Surprisingly, Shinohara officials gave no comment at the time of this article, many of whom seemed entirely unaware of a buyout until approached.

New Light Media promises to keep extensive coverage on these ongoing matters.

Life Among The Stars

A brief look into the disciplined spacer society of FreeSky

by Hellcat, Withmore Globe Editor

With the PRI merger underway, the opportunity arose to visit FreeSky and the nearby Kashflo Kasino with associates at NLM to see how, if at all, the incidents leading up to the historic merger affected those who chose to make their fortune amidst the stars.

It's hard to place if the atmosphere around FreeSky is any different following the hostage situation last month involving the Skywatch Asteroid Fleet Endeavor. The people here all seem to move with purpose, carrying themselves with a duty-oriented mentality that seems to be present everywhere you look. It doesn't take a genius to understand why, of course. Read More

With repairs still well under way a year and some chyen after the explosions which tore through the upper sections of FreeSky, the remaining limited real estate is designed to maximize efficiency--a core tenet of the station's design, everything has purpose, nothing is wasted.

Things look a few steps short of pure chaos as I step off the ramp of the Abbondanza, the orbital runner responsible for ferrying high rollers to and from the Kashflo Kasino. Spacers and tourists alike are packed shoulder to shoulder as they are processed through the lines at the disembarkment atrium, harangued on all sides by vendors peddling knick-knacks and clothing of peculiar, off-world fashion. Peacekeepers, the FreeSky equivalent to our own Withmore Justice Force, oversee things under a stern visage. They're easy to spot in the crowd, sporting gleaming black armor and helmets with glowing red eyes. It's not a job I envy, despite the imposing look.

After taking some time to adjust to the recycled air and artificial gravity of the station, I manage to find one of the off-duty Peacekeepers getting what looked like some much-needed R&R at the promenade's most recognizable hangout spot, the Cafe Au Revoir. Though initially skeptical, he agreed to talk shop over scotch as we took in the view of the station's exterior through the massive wall-sized window. Peacekeeper Reynolds, as he prefers to be called, settles into a corner table with a wide view of the bar, and I don't need to see his face to know he's only half-paying attention as he keeps tabs on the comings and goings of the patrons. At his request, we dispense with the pleasantries and get down to brass tacks.

Reynolds is quick to tell me that he's not at liberty to discuss the finer details of the investigation into the events leading up to the SAFE fleet incident, but that there wasn't much in the way of progress to report on even if he could. He is pretty open in admitting that the Peacekeepers lack the investigative resources of Withmore's Justice Force, stating quite plainly that "keeping the peace is as good as we get." I ask him how residents of the station--the career spacers, not tourists like myself--took the news of the fleet hijacking. If some of them had reconsidered their way of life considering the situation. He gives a subtle shake of his head, then motions around the room with a broad sweep of his hand. "You choose to live up here, you accept the risk. Lost a brother last year. Still here. I know he'd be here if it had been me. Can't accept the risks, got no business being up here in the first place."

He excuses himself from the table with a weary sigh, as a fight appears to be seconds from breaking out across the bar between what I later learn are the crews of rival salvage vessels. Though tempers appear to be running hot, Reynold's very real threat of confiscating and stripping their ships for parts to help the station seems to put an end to whatever dispute. The crews retreat to their respective seats to glower angrily at each other.

The trip back to the casino leaves me plenty of time to ruminate. It's a curious creature that opts to live out their life in space, and if anything, this conversation has made it clear to me that it is not a life for the faint of heart. FreeSky is a tougher place than most give it credit for, and the people who keep it running move and act with purpose, a trait I wish I saw more of amongst my peers. It's a hard life for hard people, but the view's worth it.

---

Can you write worth a damn? Do you have an inquisitive mind? Are you not stupid? If the answer to all of these is yes, the Withmore Globe might have a place for you. Gridmail a resume and a sample article to NewsDesk for review.

SHI buckling under recent stress?

Manufacturing megacorp struggling after recent events.

It's been a tumultuous week for SHI. Their stock, previously on the uptick from speculator interest in the on-going contract to deliver mining tugs to the Skywatch Corporation, has begun a downward spiral as investors lose confidence in the brand.

Skywatch has been none too kind to SHI, blaming them fully for leaking the access codes to the vessels being used to slingshot an asteroid into N.E.O. SHI's CEO buckled under pressure from Skywatch to pay the ransom demanded, and the ships were eventually returned to Skywatch control. Read More

However, this had led many shareholders to call for the embattled CEO to resign.

Skywatch representatives have made it known that they are looking for alternative suppliers for future ship building, though it remains to be seen if they will really pull the contract from SHI or if SHI will be able to convince them that they can still execute the remainder of the contract with fewer hitches in the future.

The once bright future of SHI has darkened slightly, but many investors still believe the strong earnings and brand recognition mean this is merely a setback and not the start of a full on decline in the company's bottom line.

Hostage situation on SAFE fleet resolved, mission continues.

SHI caves to rising external pressure, pays ransom.

Just shy of the 1 week deadline presented by the organization calling itself 'The Black Tide', the CEO of SHI crumbled under mounting pressure from shareholders and the Skywatch Corporation and transferred ten billion chyen in ransom.

Shortly after, Skywatch reported it had regained control of its ships and was in the process of changing all the remote access codes. Workers on the ships, previously unable to use communications equipment due to it being locked down, were able to contact their families and let them know they were safe.

No further information is available on the motivations or location of 'The Black Tide' operatives that executed the attack. Read More

A representative from the Withmore Justice force stated they have been cooperating with Peacekeepers on the FreeSky station as they launch a comprehensive investigation.

Skywatch has reported that its workers were given the choice of aborting their mission and returning home, but all elected to continue on, citing that they would not let "shoddy information security on the part of SHI stop them from making history".

Possible corruption discovered in Shinohara Withmore branch

Regional executive in hot water following investigation

by Hellcat, Withmore Globe Editor

In the recent turmoil following the ransoming of the Skywatch Asteroid Fleet Endeavor in deep space, accusations from various sources have been levied at high ranking individuals in the Withmore branch of Shinohara Heavy Industries. Read More

Sources from the Hall of Justice have confirmed that an internal investigation is currently underway, targeting regional executive Alexa Cherry for her possible role in the events that resulted in members of the Black Tide gaining access to system override codes for the SHI deep space transport vessels provided to Skywatch.

Recent events here at home have not gone unnoticed, either, as the labor management for the SHI factory in Central Red Sector have been reported absent in recent weeks. A targeted ethicol bombing against the factory came only a few days ago, with fire consuming much of the factory and spreading across the densely packed buildings of Red Sector before finally getting under control. Though the attackers claimed to be members of the decimated Red Liberation Front, there is rampant speculation across the corporate sector that this was a ploy to draw attention away from the problems facing the corporation that now seems to be struggling with consumer confidence.

Mia Tanoko, local spokesperson for Skywatch, Inc., has recently released statements over Withmore's public SIC, condemning SHI for their part in allowing the capture of the SAFE fleet. Though she could not be reached for comment at this time, she spoke over the public SIC late last night, expressing gratitude on behalf of Skywatch and its personnel for SHI's accepting the burden of their mistake and paying the ten billion chyen ransom. Skywatch also announced completion of phase one of the SAFE fleet's mission, with the heavy transports having successfully latched onto the target asteroid.

The Globe will be continuing to report coverage of the SAFE fleet's mission, as phase two will reportedly be underway shortly.

At this time, neither Alexa Cherry or any representative of Shinohara Heavy Industries were willing to comment on the company's internal affairs.

---

Can you write worth a damn? Do you have an inquisitive mind? Are you not stupid? If the answer to all of these is yes, the Withmore Globe might have a place for you. Gridmail a resume and a sample article to NewsDesk for review.

(Edited by NewsDesk at 5:05 pm on Aug. 25, 2102)

SAFE fleet held hostage in deep space!

Terror organization Black Tide seizes fleet, makes demands.

An organization known as 'The Black Tide' has claimed responsibility for the incident with the SAFE fleet. Earlier today they released the following statement directed at SHI.

"The SHI Corporation has long since abandoned any care for their workers, their shareholders and the planet. This was why it was so easy to infiltrate and obtain the remote access codes for the SAFE fleet, and why they will have to pay a steep price if they wish for us to turn control back over to Skywatch. If ten billion chyen are not transferred to the following numbered account within 1 week, we will crash the ships into the asteroid they were attempting to divert into N.E.O. Read More

both destroying the ships and killing all the Skywatch workers on board."

Insiders at Skywatch have told the Globe that they are putting extreme pressure on SHI to pay the ransom, stressing that the safety of their workers in paramount.

No representatives of SHI were available for comment.

Violent engagements break out on Gold

Attack on Eternalist chapel turns into sector-wide skirmish

by Hellcat, Withmore Globe Editor

Chaos erupted in the streets of Gold in the late hours of Wednesday evening as what was supposed to be a simple Eternalist prayer meeting at the Clone Angels chapel on New Light Avenue was interrupted by a sudden attack. Eyewitness reports paint a picture of a gathered congregation on the evening of the August 16th suddenly ducking for cover as fragmentation grenades were thrown into the Eternalist chapel by an unknown assailant. Read More

First responders caught the attacker as he was fleeing for the express tubes, and the first of many engagements broke out over the sector as Street Judges arrived on the scene.

As the engagement progressed across the sector, it became clear it was not a solo venture by the latest in a line of katana-wielding terrorists, with unfortunately familiar faces revealing themselves. Reliable sources were able to identify the pickaxe-wielding assailant as a man once involved with the now-defunct Red Liberation Front that was eradicated by the Withmore Justice Force last July. Also spotted was a highly-skilled marksman who was involved in the aforementioned group's terrorist attack against ViriiSoma near the end of last May.

As the attackers were put on the defensive by the escalating response of combined WJF and various corporate security teams, a number of bombs went off across the sector, likely a distraction to allow the attackers to make good on their escape attempts. Despite the damage done to Gold sector businesses and numerous casualties, no organization has stepped up to claim responsibility for the attack. Speculation on the reason for the attack is abundant, with leading theories being opportunistic mercenaries taking advantage of the upswing of anti-corporate sentiment brought on by vocal criminals, or a sudden resurgence of anti-Eternalist elements from the Mix.

Small-time criminals also made an appearance, clearly trying to ride the coattails of the unfortunately capable attackers. Symian Lorenz, the former Skyfox pilot turned loud-mouth murder-idiot, happened across a gravely injured Judge in the streets and reportedly snapped his neck. Street Judges were quick to respond, catching him red-handed with WJF equipment at the Hab-X. According to an announcement from Judge Steele on the public SIC, Lorenz was fitted with a behavior modification chip, an implant meant to help citizens with problematic tendencies in behavior and action to live an honest, productive life. This, more than anything, serves as an example of the Withmore Justice Force's mercy towards those who are simply misguided and require a slight course-correction to better their lives.

Despite everything, it's back to business as usual for the hard-working citizens of Withmore. Fire crews and WCS workers worked through the late hours of the night to clear rubble and repair damages, and as expected, the corporate sector continues undeterred by acts of cowardly violence. Withmore cannot and will not be stopped.

(Edited by NewsDesk at 12:02 pm on Aug. 17, 2102)

Curbing Alcohol Abuse, Curving Productivity

=== Original Article === �

With alcohol abuse on an unparalleled rise, related crimes have been at an all time high according to the latest metrics provided by the Hall of Justice, while new research shows that home alcohol consumption has been correlated with a marked drop in workplace productivity. Citizens have been found struggling to control their drinking tendencies when in the privacy of their apartment, while also robbing them of the advantages and networking opportunities afforded by social drinking with their colleagues and peers.

The City Council has come to a unified conclusion to ban the sale of alcohol through private vendors and instead are opting to keep the sales exclusively through licensed establishments. Read More

This should temper and cut the stem of the problem at its root and ensure a safer, more conscientious society for all of Withmore's Citizens to flourish in.

In the meantime, if you find yourself working from home and wanting a chemical edge on the job, consider supplements such as mRc or EverUp. �

Have a productive day, Citizens.

=== Updated 08/16/02 ===

New information coming out of the corporate council and the HOJ is reshaping the conversation around the private vendor alcohol ban. Information originally coming out about the ban had the reasoning being topsider productivity at work, leading some to believe that high level corporate influences played a large part in pushing the decision through.

The new information tells a much different and more concerning story.The real source of the ban? Mixers. Not the kind you put in your alcohol to make it taste better either. The denizens of Red consume a high percentage of the alcohol sold privately in the city. They do this on the street. They do this on the mag-lev. They do this in their homes, at their jobs--for those that have one--and it spills over to the streets of Gold.

Since introducing private alcohol sales in the city a little over 5 years ago, the percentage of alcohol related incidents has risen no less than 82%.

When presented with this information the corporate council originally planned to ban the sale of alcohol only on Red--however that met the counter argument that Mixers would be pushrf to come up to Gold and Green, invading the peace and tranquility of Topside to get their disgusting hands on a bottle of alcohol they probably wouldn't be able to afford--and thus would steal. The fear of an increase in violent crimes made by violent alcohol abusing trash, pushed the vote through, with a city-wide ban.

So the next time you're sitting at home, wishing you could sip a bottle of wine with your dinner, remember who's fault it really is that you no longer can.

Garbage in, Garbage Out.

(Edited by NewsDesk at 7:12 am on Aug. 16, 2102)

(Edited by NewsDesk at 7:15 am on Aug. 16, 2102)

Gun License Crackdown!

WJF vows to crackdown on licences

Read More

In a statement released earlier this evening by the Hall of Justice, the Withmore Justice Force has vowed to crackdown on what some citizens have been calling 'an epidemic of gun violence' by tightening the rules governing who is allowed to get a gun license and why.

In years prior, the licenses were hard to come by, being approved only for corporate security agents, private military contractors, bodyguards, and protection company employees.

In recent years the rules have gotten laxer and any corpie claiming to 'need to protect themselves' that didn't have a criminal record would typically be able to acquire a permit.

The new crackdown doesn't seek to audit existing licenses so much as lay the groundwork for restricting new permits to the uses outlined above, that were more typical in years past.

Corporate Security agents will still be able to get a license for a weapon, but this license will only remain valid during the time they are employed and becomes invalid if they lose their job, quit, or transition to a non security position.

Some have suggested that this new policy will lead to corruption within the WJF, as well to do corporate citizens offer bribes to Judges to push through their licenses where they might otherwise be denied. Only time will tell.

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