City Of St. Louis Feeling Effects Of Ongoing Protests

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By Panda Monium for Rebz.TV – After 19 days of protesting, it seems that finally the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is starting to see the light. It’s really expensive to pay these geared up cops… to the tune of 2.9 million dollars in overtime so far. Officers are beginning to reconsider their career choice. They are tired and frustrated, and the angry protesters insulting them is indeed making some of the cops feel bad about themselves, by being frankly told exactly what people think of their profession. There are a few cops that have a shred of humanity left, and are ashamed of how peaceful protesters are being treated. And I know for certain that there are officers who continue to retain their professionalism, and are appalled at the embarrassment their coworkers are creating for the police department as a whole. Of course, we’ll never see those kinds of admissions publicly, because that would be a sign of weakness and division, and these could be taken advantage of! But we see them.

Mass Arrests In St. Louis As Police Brutality Protests Continue For Third Week

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By Rafi Schwartz for Splinter – Police in St. Louis conducted mass arrests on Tuesday night after a group of activists blocked traffic on a city highway in the latest protest against former police officer Jason Stockley’s acquittal for the 2011 shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith, an unarmed black man. Faced with a heavily armored police line as they marched up the Interstate, the protesters reportedly chanted, “We don’t see a riot here. Why are you in riot gear?” They were then maneuvered off the road by law enforcement officers, who proceeded to arrest them one by one. While police did not immediately release a full count of those arrested, local alderman John Collins-Muhammad told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch 126 people were detained—among them State Representative Bruce Franks (D–St. Louis) and civil rights activist Rev. Starsky Wilson. Alarmingly, police also arrested journalist Jordan Chariton and his cameraman Ty Bayliss, both of The Young Turks, during the protests. According to at least one observer, law enforcement officers targeted members of the press during the opening minutes of their arrests.

'No Justice, No Profits' Protests Target Concerts, Businesses

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By Staff of St. Louis Post-Dispatch – The concert got underway as scheduled and once the first song, “My Life,” drowned out the protesters’ chants, many of them headed back toward Kiener Plaza. Several again blocked Broadway and Market. The chants also included “Out of the county and into the streets.” Alexandria Lane-Detwiler of Chesterfield was among the protesters. “I can’t sit at home in my privilege and not come out,” she said. Onstage, Joel made reference to the unrest. “Good evening, St Louie,” he said early on. “Glad you made it. I know things have been a little tense around here.” At one point, a couple of protesters appeared to be attempting to block a police SUV in the street, but they were pulled away by organizers of the protest. Danielle Williams, 19, joined the protest along with a friend. The St. Louis resident said she was happy to see that it had drawn a largely white crowd. She said she has felt a lack of empathy for the concerns of black urban residents like herself from others who don’t share her skin color and don’t live in the city. “They’re not trying to understand,” she said. “They don’t get it because they don’t live where we live.” Candy Voyd, 64, says she lives in The Ville, a historically African-American neighborhood in north St. Louis. As the protest wound down, she noted that police had kept their distance from the marchers. She said she believed it was because most of them, like her, were white.

Why A Team Of 8-Year-Old Football Players Decided To Kneel For National Anthem

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By Tyler Tynes for SB Nation – A group of youth football players in Cahokia, Ill., decided as a team to kneel to protest racial injustice in America, mirroring Colin Kaepernick’s original stand that got him exiled from football. Members of the Junior Comanches football team demonstrated Sunday after kids asked team coaches about the protests in St. Louis over a not-guilty verdict of an officer killing a black man in 2011. Protests in the city over the unjust killing, sparked by a new verdict, have continued for days. Jason Stockley, a white officer, killed Anthony Lamar Smith in December 2011. Dashcam recordings showed Stockley saying he was going to “kill that motherfucker” while he and another officer pursued Smith assuming he was a part of an earlier drug deal. Stockley ended up shooting Smith five times. Following a discussion by the youth players who saw protests on televisions at home, Orlando Gooden, a Junior Comanches coach, told the Belleville News-Democrat that the idea came up during practice and that parents supported it.

St. Louis Police Declare “We’re In Control” As Crackdown On Protests Enters Fifth Day

Protesters marched in silence down Market Street in St. Louis on Monday, marking the fourth day of demonstrations since a former police officer was acquitted in the 2011 shooting death of a black man. Credit Cristina Fletes/St. Louis Post-Dispatch, via Associated Press

By Genevieve Leigh for WSWS – “We’re in control,” announced the head of the St. Louis, Missouri Police Department, Lawrence O’Toole, at a press conference Monday after a weekend of unrest in the city over the acquittal of a white cop who shot a black man to death in 2011. “This is our city and we’re going to protect it,” O’Toole declared. The escalation of the brutal police crackdown in St. Louis came as the demonstrations entered their fifth day Tuesday. In sharp contrast to the largely peaceful character of the protests, police have displayed alarming levels of belligerence and arrogance in their repression of protesters. Groups of police officers in riot gear were heard early Monday morning marching through areas forcibly cleared of demonstrators chanting, “Whose streets? Our streets!” mocking protesters with a slogan commonly used at rallies. The authoritarian declarations of the police chief and his officers came on the heels of the arrest of 123 protesters in a massive roundup on Sunday night. The arrests were carried out using a highly criticized police technique called “kettling,” in which police surround and trap protesters so they cannot escape. They are then arrested en masse for alleged refusal to disperse. Nearly a day after the mass roundup, police were refusing to release information on how many of the arrested remained in custody.

Police Chant: ‘Whose Streets Our Streets’ After Mass Arrests In St Louis

Police officers watch demonstrators on Sunday night after Jason Stockley, a former St Louis police officer, was found not guilty of the murder of Anthony Lamar Smith in 2011. Photograph: Joshua Lott/Reuters

Police officers watch demonstrators as they continue to protest in St Louis Police officers watch demonstrators on Sunday night after Jason Stockley, a former St Louis police officer, was found not guilty of the murder of Anthony Lamar Smith in 2011. Photograph: Joshua Lott/Reuters View more sharing options Shares By Jamiles Lartey for The Guardian – Police officers in riot gear gathered alongside a St Louis boulevard late on Sunday night, chanting “whose street, our street”, a common refrain used by those protesting against the acquittal of a white former officer over the death of a black man, after successfully clearing the street of demonstrators and onlookers. At a news conference early on Monday, interim police chief Lawrence O’Toole said police had seized at least five weapons and said he was “proud to tell you the city of St Louis is safe and the police owned tonight”. “We’re in control,” he said. “This is our city and we’re going to protect it.” The chant drew criticism, however, from protesters, activists and some police officers. In a statement, Sgt Heather King, president of the Ethical Order of Police, a group founded by African American officers, said: “That chant goes against the very code of ethics we swore to abide by. “Whether we agree with demonstrations, protests or acts of violence, it is our job to do our job free of personal bias.” On Twitter on Monday, the group said: “We are human and we will make mistakes. We are also people who have the last word, which can be – arrest, freedom, or death. No need 2 chant.” Hundreds of officers had mobilized after another day of peaceful protests over the acquittal of Jason Stockley in connection with the death of Anthony Lamar Smith. The protest began at the police headquarters downtown. Hundreds of people marched through downtown streets, the posh Central West End and the trendy Delmar Loop area of nearby University City.

Police Tactics Kettling, Mass Arrests Questioned In St. Louis

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By Doug Moore for St. Louis Post-Dispatch – ST. LOUIS • Police used a technique called kettling on Sunday night to box in about 100 people at a busy downtown intersection and arrest them for failing to disperse. It’s a tactic used to corral a group of people who fail to follow police orders. St. Louis police took the action after several windows were broken and concrete planters and trash cans overturned. But some of those caught in the box made by rows of officers said police overstepped their bounds, using excessive force and chemical spray on people who were not protesting, including residents trying to get home and members of the media. As police closed in from all sides, they struck their batons in unison on the pavement, in a cadence march. Tony Rice, an activist who goes by Search4Swag on Twitter, said he was shocked by the police behavior. “It was the most brutal arrest I’ve ever experienced in my life,” Rice said. “I thought I was going to die.” He said he could not lie prone on the ground, as ordered, because he had his bike with him. Rice said his neck was being pressed against part of his bike, and he told the officers: “I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.” Those bused to the jail seemed confused by what was happening, Rice said. Pedestrians were arrested along with legal observers, protesters, a freelance photographer and a doctor, he said.

More Than 80 Arrested As Riot Police Break Up St. Louis Protest Over Officer’s Acquittal

Men protest outside the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department after the not guilty verdict in the murder trial of Jason Stockley, a former St. Louis police officer, charged with the 2011 shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith, who was black, in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S., September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Whitney Curtis

By Valerie Volcovici and Kenny Bahr for Reuters – T. LOUIS (Reuters) – More than 80 people were arrested on Sunday night as protests in St Louis over the acquittal of a white policeman who had shot a black man turned violent for a third night running. Police in riot gear used pepper spray and arrested the demonstrators who had defied orders to disperse following a larger, peaceful protest. After nightfall, a small group remained and the scene turned to one of disorder, following the pattern of Friday and Saturday. Protesters smashed windows and attempted to block a ramp to an interstate highway, police and witnesses said. Officers tackled some protesters who defied police orders and used pepper spray before starting the mass arrests. At a late-night news conference, Mayor Lyda Krewson noted that “the vast majority of protesters are non-violent,” and blamed the trouble on “a group of agitators.” Acting police commissioner Lawrence O‘Toole struck a hard stance, saying: “We’re in control, this is our city and we’re going to protect it.” The protests in St Louis followed the acquittal on Friday of former police officer Jason Stockley, 36, of first-degree murder in the 2011 shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith, 24. The violence evoked memories of the riots following the 2014 shooting of a black teenager by a white officer in nearby Ferguson, Missouri.

Philly Cop Suspended After Shooting Unarmed Black Man In The Back

Top photo | Protesters march and demonstrate to decry recent shootings of black men by police and urge reforms in front of City Hall in Philadelphia, July 11, 2016. (AP/Matt Rourke)

By Jack Burns for Mint Press News – Video of the deadly shooting shows Jones running away from the officer, around a vehicle, before being killed by the officer’s bullet. But police do not dispute eye witness testimony that Jones pulled a gun on the officer first. In June, when the incident happened, Ross addressed reporters saying that eyewitnesses saw the officer approach Jones, and reach around his waist, where he felt the firearm. He ordered Jones not to “reach” for the weapon. Jones ignored that command and pulled the gun on the officer, who quickly drew his own weapon and attempted to fire. Ross said the first shot by the officer was entirely justified, but the subsequent two were not, and he was apparently fired for shooting an unarmed man in the back. The incident in Philadelphia is the latest in what seems to be a string of cop vs. biker incidents which have left several citizens dead. Just last week we brought you the story of Demond Grimes—a 15-year-old child—who was killed by a Michigan State Police Officer Mark Bessner after the officer tased Grimes from his vehicle as the teenager was riding his ATV.

NYPD, Prosecutor & NYC Conspired to Destroy Black and Brown Lives

Pedro Hernandez

By Shaun King for Medium. “Stop and frisk has been banned, but police in the 42nd precinct are actually doing something far worse. They are setting quotas and goals for the number of people each officer must arrest. If you don’t meet or exceed the quotas, you feel the wrath of your supervisors. Instead of rejecting the quotas, some officers are embracing them and rounding up people, particularly teenage children, for crimes they know good and well they didn’t commit — locking them away sometimes for days, weeks, months, or even years at a time — then simply dismissing the charges. This isn’t just a few rogue cops, but an entire precinct is doing this and they are partnering with the Bronx District Attorney’s Office to make it happen.

2017 Deadliest On Record For Killings By Police

BLM protesters outsideof the Minneapolis Police Department’s Third Precinct Nov. 25, 2014. (AP/Jim Mone)

By Rachel Blevins for Mint Press News – In 2017 alone, police have killed 746 people in the U.S., according to the Killed By Police database, which puts this year on pace to become the deadliest year on record. In contrast, in the first seven months of 2016, police killed 714 people; the number was slightly higher in 2015 with 725 killed, and it was noticeably lower in 2014 with 663 killed and in 2013 with 353 killed. One case from this year that received a host of media attention occurred on July 15 when Justine Damond, a 40-year-old Australian woman was shot and killed by police in Minneapolis, after she called 911 to report a disturbance in her neighborhood. As The Free Thought Project reported, while audio was released from the shooting, neither one of the two officers on the scene chose to turn on their body cameras, and the officer who shot and killed Damond had several complaints on his record. In addition to the increase in police shootings, the U.S. is also under a new administration, which has expressed overwhelming support for all of the characteristics that lead to an empowered police state. In an address to the National District Attorney’s Association conference on July 17, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions promised to increase the federal government’s civil asset forfeiture programs. “In addition, we hope to issue this week a new directive on asset forfeiture—especially for drug traffickers,” Sessions said. “With care and professionalism, we plan to develop policies to increase forfeitures. No criminal should be allowed to keep the proceeds of their crime.

On The 3-Year Anniversary Of Michael Brown’s Death, How Far Have We Come?

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By Benjamin L. Crump for The Huffington Post – Three years later, on the anniversary of Michael Brown’s inexcusable death at the hands of police in Ferguson, Missouri, it is challenging to contemplate the United States of 2017. So much has changed since that terrible day, yet so much has remained the same. Michael Brown’s death sparked genuine conversations about race relations throughout the country, yet America still has such a long way to go. Three minutes. One hundred and eighty seconds. That’s how long it took – from the moment Officer Darren Wilson arrived at the scene until the fatal bullet was discharged – for Michael Brown’s life to be taken. In the flash of a gun muzzle, Michael joined the list of too many black men senselessly killed by law enforcement, simply because of the color of their skin. Clearly, the relationship between law enforcement and African-Americans is broken, with the system built to oppress the black citizens of our nation. We have seen time and again that our nation’s fundamental promise has a caveat: liberty and justice for all — as long as you are white. Michael Brown’s death sparked genuine conversations about race, yet America still has such a long way to go. From start to finish, the law enforcement system is predisposed against African-Americans. Blacks are more likely to be stopped, searched and targeted for unprovoked force than their white counterparts.

US Court Of Appeals Throws Out Blackwater Murder Conviction

Seattle police officers wearing riot gear guard a Starbucks coffee shop during May Day demonstrations in Seattle

By Matthew MacEgan for WSWS – On Friday, a US appeals court threw out the first-degree murder conviction of Nicholas A. Slatten, one of the four former Blackwater security guards who massacred 14 unarmed Iraqis in September 2007 while working for the US State Department. Slatten had been sentenced to life in prison in 2015, and the other three former guards each received sentences of 30 years. The court also ruled that the three other men be resentenced. In a statement, the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit panel ruled that the trial court which sentenced the four guards “abused its discretion” by not allowing Slatten to be tried separately from his three co-defendants. He was the only one who faced a murder charge since he was found to have fired the first shots as well as shooting dead the driver of a white Kia car that had stopped at a traffic circle. The other three defendants, Paul Slough, Evan Liberty, and Dustin Heard, were found to have violated the constitutional prohibition against “cruel and unusual punishment” for their part in the massacre. Thirty-year sentences were issued based on their use of military firearms while committing a felony, a charge that was used for the first time against security contractors who were provided weapons by the US government.

Tennessee Cops Sued For Three Hour Torture Of Suspect

The taser shocks by deputies were recorded by an overhead surveillance video camera and by a camera on the taser itself. (Photo: Surveillance footage photo)

By Amy K Nixon for The Tennessean – Three Cheatham County Sheriff’s deputies have been placed on administrative leave after a Pegram teen filed suit in federal court accusing them of using excessive force while he was being held at Cheatham County Jail. Jordan Elias Norris, 19, has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court accusing the deputies of deprivation of civil rights, citing the use of excessive force and failure to protect after he was repeatedly stunned with Tasers in the jail in November 2016. He suffered more than 40 pairs of Taser burns, many of which are unaccounted for by authorities, the lawsuit states. Norris was arrested Nov. 3, 2016 and charged with felony manufacturing/possession of marijuana for resale, possession of drug paraphernalia, theft under $500 and five counts of possession of a prohibited weapon. He was later charged with felony vandalism of over $1,000 and simple assault Nov. 7 while still incarcerated. Norris was originally suspected of stealing a semi-automatic rifle, and Sheriff’s deputies received information he was going to use the weapon on any law enforcement who tried to arrest him, according to Cheatham County Sheriff Mike Breedlove.

Police Kill Innocent Man While Serving Warrant At Wrong Address

From nationofchange.org

By Andrew Emett for Nation of Change – Despite having the correct address printed on the arrest warrant, Mississippi police officers recently arrived at the wrong house and fatally shot the suspect’s neighbor through his front door. Although officers claim the man had been armed and refused commands to drop the gun, witnesses assert that he was unarmed and had been shot without warning. Shortly before 11:30 p.m. on Sunday, Southaven police arrived at 5878 Surrey Lane to serve an arrest warrant for a domestic abuse suspect named Samuel Pearlman. Earlier in the evening, Pearlman had been accused of choking his girlfriend at a Citgo gas station. Instead of approaching 5878 Surrey Lane, the officers mistakenly went across the street to serve the warrant at the wrong address: 5881 Surrey Lane. According to police reports, Ismael Lopez, 41, prepared to ambush the officers by cracking open his front door while aiming a gun at them. During a press conference on Monday, District Attorney John Champion declared that two officers arrived at the wrong address to serve the arrest warrant when Lopez’s dog, Coco, ran through the open front door in an aggressive manner. Reportedly noticing Lopez standing in the open doorway with a rifle aimed at them, the officers opened fire at his pit bull and immediately ordered Lopez to drop the weapon before they shot him to death.