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Member since: Sat Jun 23, 2012, 06:03 PM
Number of posts: 3,183

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Protesters demand answers in police shooting of Darrien Hunt

Demonstrators demanded answers Saturday in the police shooting death of Darrien Hunt and called for citizen review boards in Utah and throughout the nation.

About 60 protesters, including members of Hunt’s family, rallied along Commerce Boulevard, then marched about a half block to the Saratoga Springs Police Department, chanting "Hey, ho, police brutality’s got to go" and "Shot in the back for being black."

Many of the demonstrators came from outside the city and had never met the 22-year-old man who police shot and killed Sept. 10 while he walked with what his family called a toy sword. A lawyer for the family said Friday that an independent autopsy shows Hunt was shot in the back as he ran from officers."

*The Utah County Attorney’s Office, which is investigating the incident, is awaiting the results of an autopsy by the state medical examiner to make a decision on whether the shooting was justified. Tim Taylor, deputy county attorney, has said Hunt did swing a sword at police, but he was not shot at that point and a pursuit followed."

Duane Domino, a friend of the family, thinks the protest will help pressure the police to provide answers on why Hunt was shot. Hunt’s mother, Susan Hunt, hopes it also leads to change.

Posted by damnedifIknow | Sat Oct 18, 2014, 07:30 PM (0 replies)

Omaha police focus on community relations pays off

OMAHA — When Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer took over the department's top post in 2012, the agency was struggling for ways to curb rampant gun violence that had long plagued the city. Two years later, homicides have dropped dramatically and tips from the public have helped solve some of Omaha's most violent crimes.

Much of the credit is going to Schmaderer and his push to improve the department's relationship with the city's poorest and most crime-ridden sections.

"Who knows the community, who knows the neighborhood, better than those that live there?" Schmaderer said recently. "We had way too many scenarios where we couldn't get anybody to come forward and talk to us — couldn't get any witnesses willing to put themselves out there in order to solve these cases."

The community policing effort has included weekly meetings with community organizations, churches and individuals, as well as hosting neighborhood events and community training sessions in which residents — especially young people — get to meet and ride with officers and learn about police operations.

Schmaderer, who has spent his nearly 20-year career in Omaha, also dissolved the department's "utility crew," a collection of about 20 uniformed officers sent into the city's highest-crime areas who often clashed with residents.

"That was one of the centers of harassment of alleged gang members in north Omaha, so getting rid of it was a positive step," said Sam Walker, a retired criminal justice professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and the author of 14 books on policing, criminal justice policy and civil liberties."

*Schmaderer and the department's efforts have received praise from other law enforcement agencies and community organizations, and even longtime critics of the department praised Schmaderer's quick action in firing four officers last year following the March 2013 arrests of three brothers — secretly recorded by a neighbor — that led to allegations of police brutality."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Sat Oct 18, 2014, 03:27 PM (2 replies)

Witness adds new perspective to Ferguson shooting

Witness saw encounter from start to finish:

CLAYTON • A stream of eyewitnesses has been testifying in secret before a grand jury considering whether to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown near the Canfield Green apartments in Ferguson."

*“He was 20 to 25 feet from officer, and after he started staggering, he (Wilson) let off four more rounds. As he was firing those last rounds, Michael was on his way down. We were thinking, ‘Oh my God, oh my God, brother, stop, stop.’ He was already on his way down when he fired those last shots.”

The witness said Wilson didn’t have to kill Brown. “It went from zero to 100 like that, in the blink of an eye. ... What transpired to us, in my eyesight, was murder. Down outright murder."

*Two men from outside the area who were working outside the apartment complex previously told the Post-Dispatch that Wilson chased Brown on foot away from the car after the initial gunshot, and fired at least one more shot in Brown’s direction as he fled. They said that Brown stopped, turned around and put his hands up, and that the officer killed him in a barrage of gunfire.

The men also said they never heard the officer say anything to Brown before opening fire, and that they heard Brown scream, “OK! OK! OK! OK! OK! OK!”


Posted by damnedifIknow | Fri Oct 17, 2014, 03:29 PM (4 replies)

Italian couple hospitalized after sex in the sea got them stuck together

Suction caused the amorous couple to become one and it was only after a doctor dilated the woman's uterus were the two after to safely detach."

An Italian couple having sex in the sea were hospitalized after they ended up getting "stuck" together due to suction.

The duo was reportedly taking an amorous dip near Porto San Giorgio, in the eastern Marche region of Italy, when the man found himself unable to disengage, The Local reports.

Red-faced, the entangled pair remained in the Adriatic Sea's water for several minutes before catching the attention of a woman walking along the shore.

She gave them a towel and the connected twosome struggled to walk back to the land.

A medic was called and they were soon rushed to hospital, where doctors helped to dilate the woman's uterus so the man could safely detach."


Posted by damnedifIknow | Fri Oct 17, 2014, 12:38 AM (27 replies)

Family Of Slain Stockton Bank Hostage Says Police Force Was ‘Excessive’

The 41-year-old mother of two was found dead at the end of the July 16 robbery and kidnapping, which included a wild, running gunbattle between police and the suspects on city streets.

Stockton police have said a preliminary investigation shows Holt-Singh was shot and killed by officers, likely during a final shootout where the lone surviving suspect used her as a human shield.

Bentley said the 600 bullets shot into the suspects’ vehicle were excessive and the ongoing gunbattle put the hostages and citizens in danger. He questioned whether police made mistakes or suffered a communication breakdown.

Police and city officials have been cooperative in the investigation, but not all public-records requests for 911 calls, photographs, video and any other evidence gave been granted, Bentley said.

No lawsuit has been filed, but the Singh family has not ruled out legal action, he said."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Thu Oct 16, 2014, 09:14 PM (1 replies)

Is Ebola the real ‘World War Z?’ (Spoiler alert: It’s not)

In 2006, I released a novel about a global zombie plague that drives humanity to the brink of extinction. While the zombies may have been fake, I tried to anchor the human response (political-military-economic-cultural) in reality. I studied the history of pandemics, natural disasters and industrialized warfare. I interviewed doctors, soldiers, journalists and someone who “has never gotten a check from the CIA” in an attempt to illustrate the fragile global systems that shield our species from the abyss. As a result, I’ve been repeatedly asked if the current outbreak of Ebola is the real-life incarnation of my novel. As much as any author would love to crow about how “I predicted this!”, this time, I’m happy to say, my fictional plague could not be more different from the truth."

*However, roughly one month ago, when the world reached its collective-conscious tipping point, the response deviated sharply from both World War Z’s plot and from responses to AIDS and SARS, which inspired the book. For starters, media coverage of the Ebola virus has been both loud and consistent. Try opening a newspaper, or your laptop, or flipping on either the television or radio without hearing something about Ebola. You can’t"

*Just to put Ebola in perspective, since the initial reported cases 10 months ago, more than 4,500 people have died of the disease. While those are genuine tragedies, so are the roughly 600,000 Africans who died of malaria last year and the 1,000,000-plus Africans who died of AIDS. As an American, and as a parent, I’m not nearly as worried about Ebola as I am about the polio-reminiscent threat of Enterovirus D68.

Yes, it will be a long hard fight and, yes, there will be more heartbreaking death and suffering, but if I was writing World War Z today and I had decided to base it on our planet’s response to Ebola, it would have been much shorter and with a much happier ending."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Thu Oct 16, 2014, 08:39 PM (1 replies)

US calls for swift probe into Hong Kong police brutality

The United States has called for a "swift, transparent and complete" investigation into the beating of a handcuffed Hong Kong democracy protester by plainclothes police, as fresh street clashes broke out early Thursday."

* The United States said it was "deeply concerned" by the police brutality reports."


That's fine but what about here at home?
Posted by damnedifIknow | Thu Oct 16, 2014, 01:19 AM (19 replies)

Police Militarization Must Be Halted

Last month, Republicans and Democrats in the Senate and the House of Representatives finally took a stand against the growing militarization of our police forces and our main streets. Shortly after Congressmen Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) and Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) introduced the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act last month in the House of Representatives, a bill that has over 30 bipartisan co-sponsors, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) introduced a bill by the same name in the Senate. Congress is waking up to the rapidly changing face of American law enforcement, and it is ready to do something about it.

The Senate and House bills target the Pentagon’s transfer to police forces of free military-grade equipment coming back from U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere. This program has gifted over $5 billion-worth of recently used and unused war equipment – armored personnel carriers, tanks, Humvees, and Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected (MRAP) vehicles, grenade launchers, armed drones, and assault weapons – to U.S. police since the late 1990s when the program first started. The bicameral legislation would prohibit the transfer of these military weapons. Given that the Pentagon has 13,000 MRAPs to give away, this comes at a critical time."

*Stopping violent extremist groups or individuals, whether in America or overseas, doesn’t require a militarized approach. As Rand Corporation showed in studying nearly 300 terrorist groups between 1968 and 2006, over 83 percent of them were ended or dismantled by negotiations, integration into the political process, intelligence or policing. Only 7 percent were ended by military force.

The lesson for America law enforcement, then, is to ensure that police represent the community’s demographics (a political issue), live in and integrate with the community (a trust-building and intelligence gathering issue). Anything that increases the distance and distrust makes deterrent and de-escalation much more difficult. Former police chiefs – such as Seattle Police Chief Norm Stamper, who once used military tactics on protestors in Seattle’s infamous 1999 protests against the World Trade Organization – are saying the same thing. We should take note.

The time is now to change the way we police America before hundreds of thousands of more pieces of military gear go to main streets across America. The face of America is changing quickly. Let’s make sure it’s not for the worse."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Mon Oct 13, 2014, 03:52 PM (13 replies)

Chicagoans join protests against police brutality post-Ferguson

ST. LOUIS Paris Jackson shuffled onto the bus in Bronzeville before dawn Saturday, pulled her denim jacket tight around her and then slept most of the 300-mile trip to St. Louis.

As her fellow passengers chatted about the planned anti-police brutality rally at their destination, Jackson, 23, stayed quiet—until she began to share her own experiences with Chicago police.

They target her and her friends because they are black, she said, like the bouncers at Boystown clubs who won’t let them in. She and her friends tell story after story of police targeting them on sidewalks late at night while ignoring groups of white loiterers; police roughing them up for nothing but a dirty look, police slamming one girl so hard against the ground that, years later, she still has back problems. Among friends, they call police the “CPDK”—Chicago Police Department Killers.

“They expect you to fall at their feet,” said Lonzo Ward, 25. “You’re just an officer. You’re not God.”

And so, on the spur of the moment, Jackson got on the bus to St. Louis to send a message: “Y’all not going to kill me. I’m not going to be the next Michael Brown.”

*Perhaps it’s because incidences of police violence in Chicago are underreported, said Olivia Perlow, an assistant professor of sociology at Northeastern Illinois University who marched Saturday."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Mon Oct 13, 2014, 12:33 PM (11 replies)

A Jewish call to action against police brutality

ariq Abu Khdeir, 15 was beaten senselessly by two Israeli police officers in July. Now, he’s back in his Tampa home, safe after making his rounds in Washington DC. "

In the last six or seven decades, many of our families have risen from their humble origins to positions of privilege. This rise obscures our historical perspective and scrambles our moral GPS. While there will always be a world of crises competing for our energy, focusing on the rash of police brutality, present in Baltimore as it is elsewhere, by joining the fight against police brutality makes sense; we are most able to affect change where we live. As Jews, we must remember when police came for us and refuse to tolerate even one more killing by police. By acting on our Jewish historical memory, we can work with our neighbors to build real justice in the new year."

Posted by damnedifIknow | Sun Oct 12, 2014, 01:31 PM (2 replies)
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