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Police abuse

DHL Strikers Pepper Sprayed, Arrested On Picket Line In Rhode Island

Pawtucket, Rhode Island - Police arrested DHL strikers on the picket line in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, on September 9, as the strike by local delivery drivers entered its 12th week. About 70 delivery drivers struck on June 22 against Northeast Transportation Services, a contracted provider of international logistics giant DHL. The workers are demanding wages to keep up with the cost of living, affordable health care, retirement benefits and safety issues. Northeast has hired scabs, who are reportedly being paid $55 an hour, with DHL drivers earning only $18 an hour on average. Pawtucket police and Teamsters Local 251 confirmed the arrest of five people outside the DHL Express ServicePoint. The arrests took place as 50 to 60 protesters approached a gate which opens onto Concord Street, Teamsters business agent Thomas Salvatore told The Providence Journal.

Columbus Police Execute Donovan Lewis

In the midwestern city of Columbus, Ohio, 20-year-old Donovan Lewis was shot to death while lying in his bed during the early morning hours of August 30. Police claimed they were serving an arrest warrant on multiple charges although there was no threat from Lewis who was unarmed. The police in Columbus say that Lewis raised his arms and therefore this justified the bullet fired into his body causing him to die at a hospital shortly afterwards. The officer involved in the killing of Lewis, Ricky Anderson, a 30-year veteran of law-enforcement, has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal and judicial investigation. This act of blatant police violence represents a continuation of the legacy of law-enforcement brutality and killings across the United States.

Police Lied To Get The Warrant To Search Breonna Taylor’s Home

The March 2020 killing of Breonna Taylor, which caused widespread protest around the country, was the result of police lies to obtain a warrant and racist police violence after officers forced their way into her apartment. On August 4, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the federal grand jury indictments of four Louisville Metro Police officers involved in the raid that resulted in Taylor’s death. Three of the officers were accused of violating Taylor’s Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable search and seizure by lying to secure a no-knock warrant. The officers who sought the warrant “knew that the affidavit used to obtain the warrant to search Taylor’s home contained information that was false, misleading, and out-of-date; that the affidavit omitted material information; and that the officers lacked probable cause for the search,” the indictment reads.

Akron: Arrests Target Demonstrators Demanding Justice For Jayland Walker

After public outrage over the death of Walker, who was shot 46 times by a group of eight law-enforcement officers, Mayor Daniel Horrigan declared a state of emergency while numerous people have been arrested and charged with serious crimes for merely exercising their democratic rights. Tensions remain extremely high in Akron due to the continuing anger and disgust of the shooting death of Walker. During the July 4 holiday weekend, people poured into the streets prompting police reactions which led to arrests and minor incidents of property destruction. Nonetheless, over the last month there are lingering fears of further social unrest and violence in Akron. A National Night Out event which was scheduled in several districts of the city for August 4 had been cancelled in at least four areas.

Chicago: Movement Forces The Release Of Chicago Police Torture Survivors

A series of victories was won in the past month by the movement to free survivors of torture and wrongful conviction at the hands of Chicago Police Department. Clayborn Smith, Marcellous Pittman, Juan Hernandez, Rosendo Hernandez, Arthur Almendarez, John Galvan, Eruby Abrego, Jeremiah Cain, David Gecht and David Colon have all had historic judgments in their cases. In the case of Clayborn Smith, a decision by the Illinois Appellate Court authored by Justice Cynthia Cobbs reversed the decision of Circuit Court Judge Alfredo Maldonado, finding that Detectives Kenneth Boudreau, John Halloran and James O’Brien had tortured Clayborn Smith into his confession. They granted him a new trial. In turn, Judge Maldonado found, in the case of Marcellous Pittman, that his tortured confession at the hands of Halloran and O’Brien was inadmissible. Marcellous Pittman also had the charges against him dropped by the state's attorney's office. Within the written decisions by each of these judges, it was laid out plainly that these detectives with a history of torture are not credible and should not be called as witnesses.

Akron Declares State Of Emergency After Police Execute Jayland Walker

Protests have continued in Akron, Ohio after the June 27 police killing of Jayland Walker, 25, who had 90 bullets fired at him by officers, 60 of those rounds struck the victim. After the release of a police video of the shooting of Walker, who was unarmed, people poured into the streets to demand justice for the African American motorist. Police claimed that Walker had fired at them during a chase, however, he was not carrying any firearm when he was struck down in the hail of bullets fired by Akron police. The police later claimed they discovered a handgun in Walker’s vehicle after he had already been executed. This incident represents a continuation of police violence directed towards African Americans across the United States. More than two years since the brutal police killings of Breonna Taylor in Louisville and George Floyd in Minneapolis along with the lynching of Ahmaud Arbery by vigilantes in Brunswick, Georgia, the various law-enforcement agencies have been given even more resources by the federal government to carry out their brutal treatment of Black and People of Color Communities.

Justice Department Investigates NYPD’s Special Victims Division

The U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday that it has opened an investigation into the New York City Police Department’s sex crimes unit. “Over the last several months, we have learned concerning information from a variety of sources of historical issues about the way the Special Victims Division has conducted its investigations for many years,” said U.S. Attorney Breon Peace for the Eastern District of New York in a Justice Department statement announcing the probe. The investigation will assess whether the Special Victims Division (SVD) engages in a “pattern or practice of gender-biased policing.”

July 4th Events Canceled, Protests Over Police Murder Of Jayland Walker

Friday marks the third day of protests over the Akron police shooting death of 25-year-old Jayland Walker, an Akron DoorDash driver who was killed by multiple shots following a police chase on Monday. Previous protests were small, a couple dozen people. But as news of Walker's death spread across the city and national organizations like Black Lives Matter took note, today's protest downtown is expected to grow. Reporters and photographers from The Akron Beacon Journal will be reporting live from today's protest. Follow their reporting as it unfolds below.

New Documents: US-Trained Special Forces Involved In Drug Trafficking

Tegucigalpa, Honduras - Members of the former Honduran elite police unit, the COBRAS, worked with the ‘Los Grillos’ criminal gang to steal drug money and shipments, according to newly released U.S. court documents. Los Grillos, together with the special forces police unit are involved in selling and stealing drugs “through police operations” and according to Honduran press reports, act as contract hitman. The U.S. DEA document (see below) dated July 13, 2016, was recently filed in the case against Ludwig Criss Zelaya Romero, a convicted drug trafficker and former Honduran police officer. Zelaya Romero is appealing his sentence after pleading guilty in April 2018 to conspiracy to import cocaine and use and carry firearms in connection with a drug trafficking conspiracy.

Leaked Records Of Baltimore Cop Exemplify Limits Of Police Reform

Back in April 2016, a Baltimore news report about “police recruiting perils after Freddie Gray”  focused on a new police hire with an ideal origin story. Luke Shelley, a National Guardsman deployed here during the Baltimore Uprising in April 2015, had recently joined the Baltimore Police Department (BPD). As a guardsman, he had been stationed at Mondawmin Mall, ground zero for the rioting that took place on April 27, 2015, “an experience that convinced [Shelley] he wanted to serve the city,” local ABC affiliate WMAR reported. “I want to be where the challenge is and where the need is for good police,” Shelley told WMAR in 2016. “To have that impact on countless lives—a hundred or a thousand or whoever you meet on a daily basis—I think is a pretty noble and high responsibility.”

Penetrating The Blue Wall

Like many Americans, especially those on the political left, I have a distrust of the police.  I’ve had several negative experiences that have left me jaded, including one in which I am the plaintiff in a federal lawsuit. My brain defaults to thinking the worst of the men and women in blue.  That’s often unfair, and it’s something that I’m trying to overcome. One thing I realized very recently was that, as in any other vocation, there are some police officers who are born whistleblowers.  Like any others, they revealed the truth when they were witness to waste, fraud, abuse, illegality, or threats to the public health or public safety.  That’s something to be celebrated. It’s hard to be (or to have been) a whistleblower in the intelligence community. 

Report: Latinos Believe In Better Ways To Improve Safety Than Funding Police

Almost all Latinos believe there are better ways to make their communities safer than simply funding police departments, according to a first-of-its-kind study conducted by Mijente and other groups. In “Futuro y Esperanza: Latinx Perspectives on Policing and Safety,” 93 percent of the Latinos surveyed believe that making their communities safer requires “investing money in things that prevent crime from happening in the first place, such as good schools, access to good-paying jobs, and affordable housing, instead of just funding police to respond to it.” Most Latinos (62 percent) also say they or a loved one have had negative or even “unsafe” experiences with police, though the prevalence of such experiences varies across race, class, and gender.

The Core Of Copaganda Is The Symbiotic Relationship Between Press And Police

When the news got out that someone had shot people in New York City’s subway system, many of us knew just what would come next, and we were not surprised. Immediate, urgent calls for more police and more policing, for tougher treatment of homeless and/or mentally ill people. Forget tolerance or empathy or social services, because look where that gets us. It’s an argument that we’ve heard for decades, but it’s not an abstract debate. Just because patterns and practices are old doesn’t mean their harms are not fresh. So, yes, it matters very much whether the news convinces people that they’ve just been saved from lethal threat by, as the New York Times explained, “hundreds of officers from a multitude of agencies,” using methods “as modern as scrutinizing video from surveillance cameras and parsing electronic records, and as old-fashioned as a wanted poster.”

Brownsville Cops Arrest Activist For Anti-SpaceX Graffiti

Bekah Hinojosa was still in her pajamas Wednesday morning when she heard a knock on the door. Probably just FedEx, she thought, though the knock did seem a bit loud. When she peeked through her peephole, she saw a swarm of men. “Who is it?” she inquired. They were Brownsville police officers, she soon realized, there to initiate what would become a traumatic 24 hours for Hinojosa that would end in her border city’s mayor posting her mugshot and employment status on social media—all for the alleged crime of a little protest graffiti. Hinojosa, a local environmental activist with the Sierra Club and Another Gulf Is Possible, says she cracked the door open and “they just pushed themselves into my apartment … grabbed me and handcuffed me.”

5000 Protest Police Murder Of Black Man In No-Knock Warrant

Minneapolis, MN - Around 5000 people marched in protest here February 5, to demand justice for Amir Locke, a 22-year-old Black man murdered by police on February 2. Police were carrying out a no-knock search warrant on the apartment where Locke was sleeping and shot him three times, nine seconds after they snuck open the door. Protesters demand jail, prosecution and murder charges for the officer who shot Amir and those who planned the raid; an end to no-knock warrants; and the resignation of the Minneapolis Police Chief Huffington and Mayor Frey. There have been multiple protests since the murder of Amir Locke, including a 100-plus vehicle car caravan through downtown, organized by CAIR-MN the night before Saturday’s protest.
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