Author Topic: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch  (Read 35582 times)

Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #180 on: May 12, 2020, 07:27:18 am »
Tuesday, 12th May 2o2o
Kentucky police killed 26-year-old EMT in police raid

by Jason Riley






(LOUISVILLE, Kentucky) – The union representing Louisville Metro Police officers lashed out at a local judge Friday for releasing from jail an inmate who allegedly shot a police officer earlier this month, calling the action “a slap in the face to everyone wearing a badge.”

But an attorney for Kenneth Walker claims police conducted an improper raid, which led to officers shooting an innocent woman eight times, killing her.

The woman, 26-year-old Breonna Taylor, was a certified EMT working at two local hospitals.

Defense attorney Rob Eggert said police burst in Taylor's home without announcing their presence and fired at least 22 times, with bullets going into neighboring apartments, and “it was incredible that Mrs. Taylor was the only one killed.”


“Had Breonna Taylor been killed by anyone except police, the person or persons responsible for her death would have been charged with a homicide,” Eggert said in a court document, also alleging Walker is a “victim of police misconduct.”

Taylor’s family says neither Walker nor Taylor was involved in drugs and believe police were looking for someone else.

“These are two good kids,” said Bianca Austin, Taylor’s aunt. 

“This is incompetent police work. My niece lost her life over this.”

Austin said LMPD has not given the family any answers as to what happened.

An attorney representing the family, Sam Aguiar, said police were actually looking for someone else and other officers had picked the suspect up at his home in a separate raid shortly before the shooting.

“Something went terribly wrong,” he said. “This was clearly a botched execution of a warrant.”

In an email, Chief Steve Conrad said he could not talk about the "incident that resulted in Ms. Taylor's death" because there is a pending Public Integrity investigation.

But he also criticized the release of Walker:

“I certainly understand the need to make sure we are releasing those people who don’t pose a risk to our community from the jail, especially as we face the outbreak of COVID-19. However, it’s hard for me to see how a man accused of shooting a police officer falls into that low-risk category and I am very frustrated by Mr. Walker’s release to home incarceration.

Prosecutors argued to the judge that Eggert's "version" of events are "irrelevant."

"One person is dead, and one person was almost killed due to Mr. Walker's actions," Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Ebert Haegele argued in a court motion.

Walker, 27, was charged with attempted murder of a police officer after he shot Sgt. John Mattingly in the leg as police were serving a search warrant during a narcotics investigation at an apartment on Springfield Drive at 1 a.m. on March 13, police have said.

A female suspect was shot and killed after three LMPD officers returned fire, Chief Steve Conrad has said. 

On Thursday, Jefferson Circuit Court Judge Olu Stevens lowered Walker’s bond from $250,000 cash to home incarceration.

Courts have been mostly closed and there is no document in online court records explaining Stevens' rationale for changing the bond.

The move prompted outrage from the police union.

“Not only is he a threat to the men and women of law enforcement, but he also poses a significant danger to the community we protect!” River City FOP president Ryan Nichols wrote in a fakebook Post Friday.

“Home incarceration was not designed for the most violent offenders!”

“I call on the public to condemn the actions of Judge Olu Stevens.”

The FOP for Metro Corrections also condemned Stevens' actions in a post, noting that the inmate population is as low as it has been since the 1990s.

"So an overcrowded jail did not figure into Judge Steven's decision to release an alleged, attempted cop killer back into the community without even so much as requiring bail," according to the post.

"Our community, which is full of voters, needs to carefully examine decisions such as these made by our public officials".

But Walker’s attorney, Eggert, claims police did not announce themselves as they exploded through the door of the apartment around 1 a.m., while the couple was sleeping.

Eggert acknowledges that Walker fired a shot, hitting Sgt. Mattingly in the leg, but claims Walker did not know he was shooting at police, according to a motion filed in court.

Police then returned fire, killing Taylor, Eggert wrote.

There were no drugs found in the home, Eggert said.

And Walker was not the target of the search warrant and if he had known police were outside, he would have let them in, Eggert said in the motion.
 
Police have said they repeatedly knocked on the door and announced their presence but were eventually forced to bust through a door, where they were met with gunfire.

Mattingly was shot in the leg and taken to University of Louisville Hospital, where he underwent surgery.

A woman who lives next door said she woke up to the sound of gunshots and Walker yelling for help, according to an affidavit filed in court records. The woman said she never heard police announce themselves.

“All she heard was a ram (breaking through the door) and gunfire,” the unidentified neighbor said.

In asking for a lower bond, Eggert said Walker played football at Valley High School, attended Western Kentucky University and has only a driving while intoxicated conviction on his criminal record.

Bianca Austin, Taylor’s aunt, said Walker had just accepted a job to work at UPS.

“These two were not drug dealers,” she said.

“It just don’t make sense to us at all.”

Haegele, the prosecutor, wrote in a motion to Stevens that the judge shouldn't take the affidavits and other arguments about a bad raid into consideration.

"Disputed facts will be for the jury to decide," he wrote.

Eggert wrote that Walker “wishes to exonerate himself. His girlfriend was killed in a hail of police bullets while naked and he himself simply acted to try to protect himself.”

Police have said there is no body camera footage of the shooting because the officers involved were members of the department’s Criminal Interdiction division, who do not wear body cameras.

The officers involved in the shooting, including Det. Myles Cosgrove and Det. Brent Hankison, have been placed on administrative reassignment.







Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.wdrb.com/in-depth/attorneys-claim-lmpd-officers-killed-26-year-old-emt-in-botched-police-raid/article_4bb33de6-704e-11ea-bb3c-4785530c8830.html

Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #181 on: May 19, 2020, 11:12:49 am »
Tuesday, 19th May 2o2o
White Police Sued For Beating Black Woman & Her Son At A Sam's Club
by Ben Kesslen





A 68-year-old black woman in Missouri is suing four white police officers claiming that she and her son were injured when officers threw them to the floor of a big-box store on the false accusation that they had stolen a television.


Marvia Gray, 68, said the incident began when she and her son, Derek, went to a Sam’s Club in the St. Louis suburb of Des Peres on March 23rd to buy a television, according to the complaint filed in St. Louis County Circuit Court on Monday against the city of Des Peres and four of its police officers.

The TV they bought did not fit into their SUV, so the Grays told the store they would come back to pick it up, the complaint says.



When Derek returned to the store with his receipt, the TV was “withheld from him on suspicion that he was attempting to steal it,” the complaint alleges.


Eventually, the television was released to him after a "store employee interceded with management and confirmed that Derek had in fact made the purchase."

When Derek went to load the television into his car, an officer followed him.

The complaint alleges that a store employee informed the officer that Derek had purchased the television, but the officer nonetheless made an “emergency phone call” saying he “witnessed Gray steal a TV and place it in the parked vehicle.”

When Derek returned home with the TV and told his mother he was accused of stealing, the two decided to return the TV and went back to the store.

While at the store attempting to get a refund, the lawsuit alleges that four Des Peres police officers "without cause or adequate provocation and in the presence of countless witnesses, violently and physically seized Marvia Gray and Derek Gray, throwing them to the floor, beating them, handcuffing them, then arresting them."

The incident was captured on a store surveillance camera.

Marvia and Derek Gray were both arrested, and their TV and other purchases they had made at the store were seized and their car towed, the lawsuit says. Their purchases were returned to them by police the following day.

The mother and son both suffered multiple injuries and extreme emotional distress from the incident, the complaint says.

Andrew M. Stroth, of Action Injury Law Group, a national civil rights law firm representing Marvia Gray, said his client “thought her son was about to be another black man unjustifiably shot and killed by the police,” according to The Associated Press.


“You can see in the video that she is terrified with respect to what they’re doing to her son,” Stroth said.

In a press release, the Des Peres Public Safety Department said its officers “were dispatched to the Sam’s Club for a reported Larceny” and upon arrival learned “it was the previous subjects from the earlier incident,” referring to when the officer followed Derek Gray to his car.

The statement said Derek Gray “did not comply and began to struggle with officers” and that Marvia Gray was arrested after she “began to grab and pull at the officers” during the interaction.


Derek Gray was charged with aggravated assault of a police officer and “stealing in the near future” and Marvia Gray was charged with interfering and resisting arrest.

The city said it is investigating the incident, and Des Peres Police Capt. Sean Quinn told NBC News in an email,

"There is a lawsuit that has been filed and because of this I cannot comment any further."

Sam’s Club could not be immediately reached for comment by NBC News on Tuesday.

The St. Louis County chapter of the NAACP told KSDK that it is standing with the Grays to seek accountability for the officers.

"Unfortunately, I get these complaints way too often," the chapter's president, John Bowman, said.

"It appears in more and more police interaction between people of color and white police officers, there seems to be this feeling that they treat black people as a weapon because of their color.”

















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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #182 on: May 26, 2020, 01:42:09 pm »
Tuesday, 26th May 2o2o
4 Cops Involved In Death Of George Floyd Incident Fired
by KSTP (an ABC News Affiliate)





The four responding officers involved in the incident in south Minneapolis that led to the death of George Floyd have been terminated, according to Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey.

"This is the right call," Frey said in a statement on Twitter.

Frey and Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo addressed the community Tuesday afternoon regarding the firing of the officers.

"When Mayor Frey appointed me as chief of the Minneapolis police department, I was very steadfast and strong on what our department vision, values and culture change would be moving forward. One of those pillars is sanctity of life," Arradondo said.

"We know there are inherent dangers in the profession of policing but the vast majority of the work we do never require the use of force."

A nationally-recognized civil rights attorney stated he will be representing the family of George Floyd.

Attorney Benjamin Crump is known for his work with high-profile cases and has represented the families of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown and Tamir Rice.

Crump issued a statement mid-morning Tuesday that he has been retained to represent Floyd's family.

Crump also identified both Minneapolis Police officers as Derek Chauvin and Tou Thao.


Minnesota's Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are investigating the man's death from what police are calling "medical distress" after Minneapolis police placed him in handcuffs.

The incident happened just after 8 p.m. Monday in the area of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue South.

Police said a call to 911 was placed for a man who attempted to forge a check.


The 911 caller also reportedly mentioned the suspect was still in a nearby parking lot and seemed to be under the influence.

"He was ordered to step from the car … after he got out he physically resisted officers … officers were able to get the suspect into handcuffs and the officers noticed the male was going into medical distress," Minneapolis police spokesman John Elder said.

At that point, officers said an ambulance was called.

The man, who police say is in his 40s, was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center where he later died.


The Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office is expected to release additional information once an autopsy is complete and family has been notified.

Police said no weapons were used and body cameras were activated.

The names of the officers involved will be released once interviews with incident participants and witnesses have taken place, the BCA stated.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has spoken with a woman who said she witnessed the incident.


Darnella Frazier told us she recorded the incident from the moment the man was placed in handcuffs.

A clip of that video can be seen via the video player above.

The video, which she posted on Fakebook, has now received tens of thousands of views.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS is working to independently confirm the video appearing to show the incident.

In the video, a police officer can be seen with his knee on the man's neck.


The man can be heard saying he can't breathe.

Frazier told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the man was not given aid until medics arrived on scene.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has reached out to the Minneapolis Police Department to talk about the video.

A police spokesman said the department does not comment on investigations that the BCA handles.

The BCA is asking anyone who captured video of, or witnessed, the incident to contact the department at 651-793-7000.









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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #183 on: May 27, 2020, 06:26:49 am »
Wednesday, 27th May 2o2o

A statement by Legal Defense Fund



This morning, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) issued the following statements from Janai Nelson, LDF’s Associate Director-Counsel, and Monique Dixon, the Director of LDF’s Policing Reform Campaign, on the police-involved killing of George Floyd and the ensuing protests in Minneapolis.





Dixon:

“We are outraged by the callous killing of Mr. Floyd, a Black man, by a white Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) officer – and similarly appalled by the inaction of three other officers who stood by watching as Mr. Floyd endured unspeakable suffering.

Tragically, Mr. Floyd took his last breath while an officer pinned him to the ground by driving his knee onto Mr. Floyd’s neck for seven minutes, despite Mr. Floyd pleading, ‘I can’t breathe.’

“Though Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey announced that all officers involved in this incident have been fired, more action is required.

LDF will closely monitor the state and federal investigations of Mr. Floyd’s killing to determine whether criminal charges will be brought against these officers.

We expect the officers to be held accountable for their actions to the fullest extent of the law.

“We extend our deepest condolences to Mr. Floyd’s family, friends, and the larger Minneapolis community.”





Nelson:

“Despite the fact that MPD has received $6.4 million in taxpayer dollars from the Justice Department’s Community Oriented Policing Services program, Black people are killed by MPD officers at 13.2 times the rate of white people.

We call on city and federal officials to conduct a simultaneous independent investigation into this seemingly pervasive issue — one on which Mr. Floyd’s killing has unfortunately shed renewed light.

The Justice Department must ensure that that all police departments, including MPD, comply with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which forbids the use of federal funds for state and local programs engaged in discrimination.

Additionally, LDF stands in solidarity with Minneapolis residents demanding accountability from the MPD.

All residents must be afforded their right to protest without fear of violence or repercussions.

We demand that all protesters are protected – and that any law enforcement engagement with protestors is focused on ensuring the safety of protesters and guarding their constitutional rights. 

The militarized response of the Minneapolis Police Department that we are already seeing on the ground is deeply disturbing and we demand that any response to isolated incidents of unrest is measured and within the bounds of the law.”













Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.naacpldf.org/press-release/ldf-statements-on-the-police-involved-killing-of-george-floyd-and-ensuing-protests/

https://www.naacpldf.org/wp-content/uploads/LDF-Statement-George-Floyd-FINAL.pdf

Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #184 on: May 27, 2020, 11:29:42 am »
Wednesday, 27th May 2o2o
LMPD officer charged with sexual assault AND misconduct while on-duty

by Taylor Weiter/WHAS-11 (an ABC News affiliate)







A Louisville Metro Police officer has been served summons for several offenses that happened while he was on-duty.

LMPD said Robert Neff is charged with three counts of official misconduct, two counts of third-degree sexual assault and one count of harassment with physical contact after a Public Integrity Unit investigation.

Neff allegedly inappropriately touched a woman working at a Louisville Thornton's while he was on-duty and in uniform March 10th.


According to court documents, he tied her hands behind her back with plastic and then untied them with a knife when she began to pull away.



That same morning he followed her into the back room where he gave her a hug and kiss on the cheek, both unwanted.

The officer was in the store for just under two hours while on-duty.

He returned when he was off-duty, and the woman told him she was not interested in a relationship.

The next day, he returned for around two hours while on-duty.


The victim once again told Neff she was not interested.

Later that morning, he followed her into the back room to perform a "search," where he touched her chest.

The report says she tried to avoid him, but he followed her into the back room again for a "search," putting his hands in her shirt and on the inside of both legs.


Neff told the victim to take her socks and shoes off.

When she refused to take her socks off, he held her shoes away from her.

He left shortly after the incident.

Police said someone from inside the department brought concerns to a supervisor.

The case will go to LMPD's Professional Standards Unit for review.

Neff has been on administrative leave since March 23rd.

Two LMPD officers were previously served with summons May 22nd after an investigation found they did not write a report for a woman later murdered by her boyfriend.


Their case is also with the Professional Standards Unit for review.

Chief Steve Conrad announced his decision to retire at the end of June this month.

His decision comes as the FBI opened investigation into the death of Breonna Taylor, who was shot and killed during the execution of a no-knock search warrant.













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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #185 on: May 28, 2020, 11:35:28 am »
Thursday, 28th May 2o2o


In Minneapolis, this is the murderer's house

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #186 on: May 28, 2020, 10:00:25 pm »
Friday, 29th May 2o2o

Last night in Minneapolis...


Photograph by Carlos Gonzalez

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #187 on: May 29, 2020, 06:51:36 am »
Friday, 29th May 2o2o

According to CNN news reporter Abby D. Phillip,  "Wow. Police in Minneapolis just arrested @OmarJimenez live on CNN. What is going on??  Our camera crew and Omar's producer also now being arrested."

« Last Edit: May 29, 2020, 07:29:49 am by Battle »

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #188 on: May 29, 2020, 07:29:30 am »
Friday, 29th May 2o2o

According to CNN news reporter Abby D. Phillip, "My other colleague @joshscampbell is also on the scene in Minneapolis. He just reported that police approached him, asked him who he was with, he said CNN. And they say “ok, you’re good.” This is minutes after Omar, who is black and Latino, was arrested nearby."

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #189 on: May 29, 2020, 10:39:40 am »
Friday, 29th May 2o2o
A statement by President Barack Obama regarding the murder of George Floyd



I want to share parts of the conversations I've had with friends over the past couple of days about the footage of George Floyd dying face down on the street under the knee of a police officer in Minnesota.

The first is an email from a middle-aged African American businessman.

"Dude I gotta tell you the George Floyd incident in Minnesota hurt. I cried when I saw that video. It broke me down. The 'knee on the neck' is a metaphor for how the system so cavalierly holds black folks down, ignoring cries for help. People don't care. Truly tragic."

Another friend of mine used the powerful song that went viral from 12-year-old Keedron Bryant to describe the frustrations he was feeling.

The circumstances of my friend and Keedron may be different, but their anguish is the same. 
It's shared by me and millions of others.

It's natural to wish for life "to get back to normal" as a pandemic and economic crisis upend everything around us. 

But we have to remember that for millions of Americans, being treated differently on account of race is tragically, painfully, maddeningly "normal" - whether it's while dealing with the health care system, or interacting with the criminal justice system, or jogging down the street, or just watching birds in a park.

This shouldn't be "normal" in 2020 America. 

It can't be "normal."  If we want our children to grow up in a nation that lives up to its highest ideals, we can and must be better.

It will fall main on the officials of Minnesota to ensure that the circumstances surrounding George Floyd's death are investigated thoroughly and that justice is ultimately done.

 But it falls on all of us, regardless of our race or station - including the majority of men and women in law enforcement who take pride in doing their tough job the right way, everyday - to work together to create a "new normal" in which the legacy of bigotry and unequal treatment no longer infects our institutions or our hearts.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2020, 11:23:58 am by Battle »

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #190 on: May 29, 2020, 11:56:05 am »
Friday, 29th May 2o2o
Former Minnesota Police Officer Derek Chauvin In Custody, Charged With Murder In George Floyd’s Death
by WCCO/ CBS Minnesota





(MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota) — Fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin has been arrested four days after George Floyd’s fatal arrest that sparked protests, rioting and outcry across the city and nation, and Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced he has been charged with murder and manslaughter, with the charges scheduled to be released shortly.

On Friday, John Harrington, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, announced that Chauvin was taken into custody by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, who said that Chauvin was taken into custody in Minneapolis.

There was some speculation that he had gone to a home in Florida.

“We have now been able to put together the evidence that we need. Even as late as yesterday afternoon, we did not have all that we needed,” Freeman said, before saying that he was unable to speak to specific pieces of evidence and which one specifically was needed to file charges.

“This is by far the fastest that we’ve ever charged a police officer,” Freeman said.

Freeman says the other officers involved are under investigation and he “anticipates charges.”

“But I’m not going to get into that,” he said.

“Today, we’re talking about former officer Chauvin.”

Chauvin is the former officer in the video seen around the world with his knee on Floyd’s neck for at least five minutes.

He’d been with Minneapolis police for 19 years.

On Monday at 8 p.m., Minneapolis police said officers were called to the intersection of Chicago Avenue and East 38th Street on a report of someone trying to use a forged document at Cup Foods.

Police initially said Floyd was resisting arrest and had a medical incident.

However, video obtained by CBS News shows Floyd cooperating with officers, at least in the initial moments of the encounter.

A bystander’s video showed Floyd pleading that he could not breathe as a white officer — identified as Chauvin — knelt on his neck and kept his knee there for several minutes after Floyd stopped moving and became unresponsive.

The other officers involved were identified as Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J Alexander Kueng, both with the department for fewer than three years.

All four officers were fired a day after Floyd’s death.

As of yet, none of those three have been reported as having been taken into custody.

The incident drew comparisons to the case of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man who died in 2014 in New York after being placed in a police chokehold.

He also said the words “I can’t breathe” while being arrested.

The phrase has become a rallying cry for protests over police brutality.

The video of Floyd’s fatal arrest circulated widely on social media, sparking protests in Minneapolis and cities across the country.

On both Tuesday and Wednesday, protests began with peaceful demonstrations near where Floyd was pinned to the ground, but violence later broke out near the 3rd Precinct police station.

Wednesday evening’s protests involved more than 30 fires, destruction of businesses and looting.

Unrest was more widespread Thursday night, with destruction spreading to St. Paul, where more than 170 businesses were damaged.

In Minneapolis, rioters burned the 3rd Precinct police station.

Earlier Friday, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said the looting and arson must come to an end so that state can address the problems that led to Floyd’s death.

“We cannot have the looting and recklessness that went on,” he said.

“It’s time for us to clean our streets.”

At that same press conference, Harrington, the commissioner of public safety, called Floyd’s death a murder.

“That’s what it looked like to me,” he said.

“I’ll call it as I see it.”

Floyd’s death is being investigated by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, FBI in Minneapolis and the Department of Justice Civil Rights division.














Would You Like To Know More?
https://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2020/05/29/derek-chauvin-arrested-george-floyd-death-minneapolis-police-officer/
« Last Edit: May 30, 2020, 03:38:16 am by Battle »

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #191 on: June 01, 2020, 03:10:29 pm »
Monday, 1st May 2o2o
How to Make this Moment the Turning Point for Real Change
by Barack Obama







As millions of people across the country take to the streets and raise their voices in response to the killing of George Floyd and the ongoing problem of unequal justice, many people have reached out asking how we can sustain momentum to bring about real change.

Ultimately, it’s going to be up to a new generation of activists to shape strategies that best fit the times.

But I believe there are some basic lessons to draw from past efforts that are worth remembering.

First, the waves of protests across the country represent a genuine and legitimate frustration over a decades-long failure to reform police practices and the broader criminal justice system in the United States.

The overwhelming majority of participants have been peaceful, courageous, responsible, and inspiring.

They deserve our respect and support, not condemnation — something that police in cities like Camden and Flint have commendably understood.

On the other hand, the small minority of folks who’ve resorted to violence in various forms, whether out of genuine anger or mere opportunism, are putting innocent people at risk, compounding the destruction of neighborhoods that are often already short on services and investment and detracting from the larger cause.

I saw an elderly black woman being interviewed today in tears because the only grocery store in her neighborhood had been trashed.

If history is any guide, that store may take years to come back.

So let’s not excuse violence vandalism, or rationalize it, or participate in it.


If we want our criminal justice system, and American society at large, to operate on a higher ethical code, then we have to model that code ourselves.

Second, I’ve heard some suggest that the recurrent problem of racial bias in our criminal justice system proves that only protests and direct action can bring about change, and that voting and participation in electoral politics is a waste of time.

I couldn’t disagree more.

The point of protest is to raise public awareness, to put a spotlight on injustice, and to make the powers that be uncomfortable; in fact, throughout American history, it’s often only been in response to protests and civil disobedience that the political system has even paid attention to marginalized communities.

But eventually, aspirations have to be translated into specific laws and institutional practices — and in a democracy, that only happens when we elect government officials who are responsive to our demands.

Moreover, it’s important for us to understand which levels of government have the biggest impact on our criminal justice system and police practices.

When we think about politics, a lot of us focus only on the presidency and the federal government.

And yes, we should be fighting to make sure that we have a president, a Congress, a U.S. Justice Department, and a federal judiciary that actually recognize the ongoing, corrosive role that racism plays in our society and want to do something about it.

But the elected officials who matter most in reforming police departments and the criminal justice system work at the state and local levels.

It’s mayors and county executives that appoint most police chiefs and negotiate collective bargaining agreements with police unions.

It’s district attorneys and state’s attorneys that decide whether or not to investigate and ultimately charge those involved in police misconduct.

Those are all elected positions.

In some places, police review boards with the power to monitor police conduct are elected as well.

Unfortunately, voter turnout in these local races is usually pitifully low, especially among young people — which makes no sense given the direct impact these offices have on social justice issues, not to mention the fact that who wins and who loses those seats is often determined by just a few thousand, or even a few hundred, votes.

So the bottom line is this: if we want to bring about real change, then the choice isn’t between protest and politics.

We have to do both.

We have to mobilize to raise awareness, and we have to organize and cast our ballots to make sure that we elect candidates who will act on reform.

Finally, the more specific we can make demands for criminal justice and police reform, the harder it will be for elected officials to just offer lip service to the cause and then fall back into business as usual once protests have gone away.

The content of that reform agenda will be different for various communities.

A big city may need one set of reforms; a rural community may need another.

Some agencies will require wholesale rehabilitation; others should make minor improvements.
Every law enforcement agency should have clear policies, including an independent body that conducts investigations of alleged misconduct.

Tailoring reforms for each community will require local activists and organizations to do their research and educate fellow citizens in their community on what strategies work best.

But as a starting point, here’s a report and toolkit developed by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and based on the work of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing that I formed when I was in the Executive Mansion.

And if you’re interested in taking concrete action, we’ve also created a dedicated site at the Obama Foundation to aggregate and direct you to useful resources and organizations who’ve been fighting the good fight at the local and national levels for years.

I recognize that these past few months have been hard and dispiriting — that the fear, sorrow, uncertainty, and hardship of a pandemic have been compounded by tragic reminders that prejudice and inequality still shape so much of American life.

But watching the heightened activism of young people in recent weeks, of every race and every station, makes me hopeful.

If, going forward, we can channel our justifiable anger into peaceful, sustained, and effective action, then this moment can be a real turning point in our nation’s long journey to live up to our highest ideals.

Let’s get to work.

















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Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #192 on: June 01, 2020, 11:41:07 pm »
Tuesday, 2nd June 2o2o

According to Navyvetbolt81 on Twitter, "I came home, threw my riot gear off in the middle of my living room aftet the last night id be ordered to kill democracy. I resigned this morning. Im too stunned and ashamed to touch it. I just witnessed another murder on tv. The murder of democracy"

Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #193 on: June 02, 2020, 01:34:09 pm »
Tuesday, 2nd June 2o2o
6 Atlanta officers charged after students pulled from car

by The Associated Press






(ATLANTA, Georgia) — Six Atlanta police officers have been charged after dramatic footage showed authorities pulling two young people from a car during protests over the death of George Floyd, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard announced the charges during a news conference.

The Saturday night incident first gained attention from video online and on local news.

Five of the officers are charged with aggravated assault, in addition to other charges.

Two of the officers, Investigator Ivory Streeter and Investigator Mark Gardner, were fired earlier this week.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said the woman, Taniyah Pilgrim, was released without charges.

She said the man, Messiah Young, was released, too, and she’s ordering the charges against him dropped.

She didn’t specify what charges he faced.

A police report says Young was charged with attempting to elude police and driving with a suspended license.

Dramatic body camera video that police released Sunday night shows police taking another young man into custody in a downtown street alongside a line of stopped cars.

The man is pleading with police to let him go, saying he didn’t do anything.


Young, sitting in the driver’s seat of a car stopped in the street holds up his phone, appearing to shoot video as an officer approaches and pulls the driver’s side door open.

Young pulls the door shut and says repeatedly,

“I’m not dying today.”

He urges the officers to release the other man and let him get in the car as the dark sedan advances a bit.

The car gets stuck in traffic and officers run up to both sides of the car shouting orders.

An officer uses a stun gun on Pilgrim as she’s trying to get out of the car and then officers pull her from the vehicle.

Another officer yells at Young to put the car in park and open the window.


An officer repeatedly hits the driver’s side window with a baton, and another officer finally manages to break it.

As the glass shatters, an officer uses a stun gun on Young and officers pull him from the car as officers shout,

“Get your hand out of your pockets,”

and,


“He got a gun. He got a gun. He got a gun.”

Once he’s out of the car and on the ground, officers zip tie Young’s hands behind his back and lead him away.

Police reports do not list a gun as having been recovered.






















« Last Edit: June 02, 2020, 01:38:30 pm by Battle »

Offline Battle

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Re: Disappearing Excellence: The Senate & Loretta Lynch
« Reply #194 on: June 02, 2020, 01:36:40 pm »
Tuesday, 2nd May 2o2o
Minnesota Files Civil Rights Charge Against Police In George Floyd's Murder
by STEVE KARNOWSKI and AMY FORLITI





(MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota) — The state of Minnesota filed a human rights complaint Tuesday against the Minneapolis Police Department in the death of George Floyd by an officer who pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for minutes, even after he stopped moving.

Governor Tim Walz and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights announced the filing at a news conference Tuesday afternoon.

Widely seen bystander video showing Floyd’s death has sparked sometimes violent protests around the world.

The officer, Derek Chauvin, has been fired and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Three other officers involved were fired but have not been charged.

“We know that deeply seated issues exist," the governor said.

"I know it because we saw the casual nature of the erasing of George Floyd’s life and humanity. We also saw the reaction of the community. They expected nothing to happen, because nothing happened so many times before.”

Walz said the investigation into the police department's policies, procedures and practices over the past 10 years will determine if the force has engaged in systemic discrimination toward people of color, and work out how to stop it.

State Human Rights Commissioner Rebecca Lucero will lead the investigation.

Lucero's department will seek an agreement from Minneapolis city leaders and the police department to immediately implement interim measures, followed by long-term measures to address systemic discrimination.

The FBI is also investigating whether police willfully deprived Floyd of his civil rights.

Spokesmen for the police department and the mayor’s office didn’t immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

The Minneapolis City Council planned to issue a statement on the investigation later Tuesday.

The department enforces the state’s human rights act, particularly as it applies to discrimination in employment, housing, education, public accommodations and public services.

Mediation is one of its first-choice tools, but the cases it files can lead to fuller investigations and sometimes end up in litigation.

The Minneapolis Police Department has faced decades of allegations brutality and other discrimination against African Americans and other minorities, even within the department itself.

Critics say its culture resists change, despite the elevation of Medaria Arradondo as its first black police chief in 2017.

Arradondo himself was among five black officers who sued the police department in 2007 over alleged discrimination in promotions, pay, and discipline.

They said in their lawsuit that the department had a history of tolerating racism and discrimination.

The city eventually settled the lawsuit for $740,000.

Earlier Tuesday, an attorney for Floyd's family again decried the official autopsy that found his death was caused by cardiac arrest as police restrained him and compressed his neck.

The medical examiner also listed fentanyl intoxication and recent methamphetamine use, but not as the cause of death.

A separate autopsy commissioned for Floyd’s family concluded that that he died of asphyxiation due to neck and back compression.

“The cause of death was that he was starving for air. It was lack of oxygen. And so everything else is a red herring to try to throw us off,” family attorney Ben Crump said Tuesday.

He said the Hennepin County medical examiner went to great lengths to try to convince the public that what was shown on bystander video didn’t cause Floyd to die.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison told ABC's “Good Morning America” that prosecutors are working as fast as they can to determine whether more charges will be filed.














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