Some Californians are looking to limit when law enforcement can employ 'deadly force.' Others ensured their taking of lives stays a semantic game.
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The legislation emerged from a push for new rules in response to police killings of unarmed black men such as Stephon Clark, who was shot last year after a police chase that ended in his grandmother's backyard. The officers in that shooting said they believed Clark had a gun; he was found to have been holding a cellphone, and prosecutors said in March that the officers would not face criminal charges.
The new law reflects a compromise between civil rights advocates who say it will save lives and law enforcement groups that want more clarity on the use of force — but do not want to undermine legal protections for officers.
"The whole debate boils down to two words: 'necessary' and 'reasonable,' " Ben Adler of Capital Public Radio reports. "Right now, deadly force is justified if a reasonable officer would have acted similarly in that situation. So in other words, what a typical officer would have done based on his or her training. When the law takes effect in January, that standard will change to when the officer reasonably believes deadly force is necessary."
But Adler also notes that the law mostly avoids offering a specific definition of "necessary" — a move that is widely seen as leaving the interpretation up to the courts, where judges will weigh what is "necessary" in the context of officers' use of force.
Daniel Pantaleo used fatal chokehold during the 2014 arrest of Eric Garner
“Overkill is an understatement,” the family’s lawyer said.
Jemel Roberson was working as an armed security guard at Manny's Blue Room Bar in the Chicago suburb of Robbins early Sunday morning when he asked a group of intoxicated men to leave the bar. The men came back to the bar and one with a gun began shooting. The 26-year-old security guard fired back and caught one of the men outside of the bar. He had the suspect down on the ground at gunpoint when two Midlothian police officers responding to 911 calls arrived on the scene. One of the officers shot and killed Roberson. Read the rest
A Chicago jury has found white police officer Jason Van Dyke guilty of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery with a firearm in the shooting death of black teenager Laquan McDonald. Read the rest
This jerk at an NFL game doesn't feel folks should protest civil injustice against black Americans by kneeling, but thinks the flag is there to keep his ass dry. Read the rest
United States' top toady spent over $200K of taxpayer money flying to a football game he never intended to watch. Just another demonstration that the Trump administration continues to actively try and divide the country over race.
I do not know much about football, but the two things I've come to understand will happen at a San Francisco 49ers game is that a) some players will take a knee and b) the San Francisco 49ers will lose. I've never seen a game. If you go, you expect to see players take a knee. Pence knows this.
What I know is that the players who kneel rather than participate in the National Anthem are doing so to protest the incredible injustice suffered by black Americans on a daily basis. The US method of policing appears focused on killing them out of hand. The President and Vice-President of the United States seem bent on turning this protest into something about disrespecting our nation's veterans and service people. These things are not connected. The National Anthem and US Flag symbolize us all, and our freedom to do things like protest police abuse. This entire line of reasoning is smoke and mirrors.
The cost of carting Mr. Pence and his entourage to Indianapolis, so the VP could not attend the game, is estimated by CNN at over $200k. Apparently Pence had the press wait in the bus, because he didn't intend to stay at the game very long and had already planned a fundraiser in California that taxpayers had to pay to fly them all back to. Read the rest
The Huffington Post’s Black Voices breaks down a disturbing new report from Georgetown Law’s Center on Poverty, which found that adults believe black girls seem older and less innocent than white girls of the same age and that this disparity starts as early as five years old. To conduct the study, researchers surveyed 325 adults from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds, many of whom had a high school diploma or higher. As HuffPost explains:
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“Girlhood Interrupted: The Erasure of Black Girls’ Childhood,” released on Tuesday by Georgetown Law’s Center on Poverty and Inequality, shows that society’s perception of black girls leads to their “adultification.” The report shows that adults believe that black girls seem older than white girls of the same age, and think that black girls need less nurturing, protection, support and comfort than white girls. It also found that people assume black girls are more independent, know more about adult topics and know more about sex than young white girls.
Rebecca Epstein, lead author and executive director for the center, and Jamilia J. Blake, co-author and an associate professor at Texas A&M University, broke down the relationship adultification has on the ways black girls are disciplined during a press conference call Tuesday.
“One reason this might be occurring is because black girls are being held to the same stereotypes we have of black women,” Blake said. “Black women have historically and currently been seen as being aggressive, loud, defiant and oversexualized. And I believe, along with many other researchers, that the stereotypes of black women are being mapped on to black girls.”
The report stated that “potential implications” for the findings could be research exploring how these perceptions of black girls affect how they are disciplined at school and beyond.
Alfred Okwera Olango, who was black, was fatally shot by police in El Cajon, California on Tuesday. Police in the San Diego suburb city say the 38 year old Ugandan immigrant pointed a vape pen or e-cigarette device at them, before police shot the man to death.
Officers were responding to a call of a man behaving erratically, and walking in traffic. Olango's friends and supporters say court records show that he suffered from mental illness, and may have been experiencing a seizure before his death. An El Cajon police officer is believed to have shot Olango within as little as one or two minutes after arriving at the scene. Read the rest
The world's greatest living tennis player wrote something on Facebook today about police killings of unarmed black Americans. Read the rest
This powerful statement from the New York Times editorial board captures the cries of many people on the streets of Charlotte, North Carolina tonight. Read the rest
The governor of North Carolina has declared a State of Emergency after violence erupted on the second night of protests in Charlotte, over the police killing of a black man. The governor called for support from the U.S. National Guard, and Highway Patrol officers.
The protest tonight escalated into chaos, and what was at first reported as a death of a man in the crowds. Read the rest
WARNING: The video in this post is graphic and documents a violent death.
In Tulsa, Oklahoma, police have released video that shows a white police officer shooting and killing an unarmed black man. In the video, Terence Crutcher can be seen raising his hands above his head. Read the rest
A report out this week from Bloomberg says that since January, 2016, people in the city of Baltimore, Maryland have secretly and periodically been spied on by police using cameras in the sky. Authorities today effectively admitted that the report is accurate. Read the rest
“When ordering at Starbucks, people have changed their name to “Black Lives Matter” so that, when their order is up, the baristas have to yell out their new moniker,” reports Taryn Finley at Huffington Post Black Voices.
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WWNO New Orleans Public Radio's Ryan Kailath, above, a reporter assigned to cover protests in Baton Rouge, was arrested there (with several other journalists) and charged with obstructing a highway. One of the officers looked at Kailath (who is of south Indian ancestry but booked as black) and said: "I’m tired of y’all saying you’re journalists."
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The Republican National Convention kicks off this Sunday in Cleveland, Ohio. Most of the highest-profile activists associated with the Black Lives Matter movement are not planning to attend, but that didn't stop FBI agents from contacting them by phone, and showing up at their homes to interrogate them and their grandmothers. Read the rest