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Freddie Gray death: murder charge announced against police officer

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Freddie Gray death: murder charge announced against police officer | 01 May 2015 | A criminal prosecution for murder will be brought over the death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore, the city's top prosecutor announced on Friday morning. State's attorney Marilyn Mosby said Gray's death was a homicide. Officer Caesar Goodson was charged with second-degree murder, while charges including manslaughter, assault and misconduct in public office were brought against five other officers. All six officers involved were charged. Warrants have been issued for their arrest.

Man who filmed arrest of Freddie Gray 'taken into custody at gunpoint' after claiming he has been harassed by cops ever since footage was released

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Man who filmed arrest of Freddie Gray 'taken into custody at gunpoint' after claiming he has been harassed by cops ever since footage was released --It is not clear why Moore was arrested or whether he faces any charges. | 01 May 2015 | The man who filmed Freddie Gray's arrest has been arrested at gunpoint, according to reports. Kevin Moore claims to have been the subject of police harassment and intimidation since filming the moment Gray, 25, was hauled into a police wagon on April 12, Counter Current News reported. And on Thursday, Moore, 30, was reportedly taken into custody with two members of Cop Watch, a group that documents police work in communities across America.

Former Christie Ally David Wildstein Set to Plead Guilty

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Former Christie Ally David Wildstein Set to Plead Guilty | 29 April 2015 | David Wildstein, a former ally of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, is set to plead guilty, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, suggesting he may be cooperating with prosecutors probing traffic jams he ordered near the George Washington Bridge. Wildstein is scheduled to appear as early as Friday in federal court in Newark, where grand jurors heard testimony in secret for months about gridlock over four mornings in Fort Lee, New Jersey, according to the person, who requested anonymity because the matter isn't public. The specific charges were unclear.

Christie not concerned over Bridgegate probe or report former ally Wildstein may plead guilty

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Christie not concerned over Bridgegate probe or report former ally Wildstein may plead guilty | 30 April 2015 | Gov. Chris Christie on Wednesday said he's "not the least bit concerned" about the federal probe into the George Washington Bridge lane closure controversy that's rocked his administration. The governor, speaking to reporters in New Jersey for the first time in months, also refused to speculate on the outcome of the probe just as Bloomberg news reported that a former Christie ally is planning to plead guilty this week in federal court. The Bloomberg report, citing an anonymous source, said former a Port Authority top executive, David Wildstein, could soon plead guilty to undisclosed charges related to the lane closures.

WikiLeaks to release new docs on trade agreements, intelligence agencies

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

WikiLeaks to release new docs on trade agreements, intelligence agencies | 01 May 2015 | WikiLeaks is planning new releases of secret documents on controversial negotiations and intelligence agency operations, according to the anti-secrecy organisation's Australian founder, Julian Assange. In an interview with Fairfax Media, Mr Assange said that while he does not expect to leave Ecuador's London embassy any time soon, WikiLeaks very much remains in the business of publishing the secrets of diplomats and spies. "There'll be more publications -- about large international so-called free trade deals, and about an intelligence agency," Mr Assange said.

Tension rises in Philadelphia as protesters clash with police during fourth night of demonstrations over death of Freddie Gray

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Tension rises in Philadelphia as protesters clash with police during fourth night of demonstrations over death of Freddie Gray --Four people were arrested while one protester claimed he had been hit over the head by a police club | 01 May 2015 | Tensions between police and protesters caused clashes in Philadelphia during the fourth night of demonstrations over the death of Freddie Gray. Officers pushed back members of a march who surged on a police line outside City Hall on Thursday, with police saying four arrests had been made. One protester told the Philadelphia Inquirer, while a senior police officer was said to have suffered a blow to the lip.

Smoke from Chernobyl fire could spread radiation far and wide - experts

May 1, 2015 by legitgov

Smoke from Chernobyl fire could spread radiation far and wide - experts | 29 April 2015 | Smoke from burning forests in the Chernobyl exclusion zone is capable of spreading contaminants [radiation] across great distances, even after the fire has been stopped, ecology experts told RT. The forest fire near the crippled Chernobyl nuclear power plant started on Tuesday and triggered an emergency alert, with police and National Guard mobilized to bring the flames under control. The fire occurred within 30 kilometers of the Chernobyl power plant, inside the exclusion zone which was abandoned and cordoned off almost 30 years ago.

Pumps at Fukushima plant halted, radioactive water leaking into ocean - TEPCO

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Pumps at Fukushima plant halted, radioactive water leaking into ocean - TEPCO | 21 April 2015 | All the eight water transfer pumps at the Fukushima 1 nuclear power station have been shut down due to a power outage, leading to a leak of radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean, the plant's operator said. Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) reported a power outage on Tuesday, according to Kyodo news agency. It follows the line of the toxic leaks that were reported in February, when at one point around 100 tons of highly radioactive water leaked from one the plant's tanks.

Study accuses the APA of complicity in CIA torture program

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Study accuses the APA of complicity in CIA torture program | 30 April 2015 | The American Psychological Association, the largest professional scientific organization of its kind, was secretly complicit in the adoption of torturous interrogation tactics used by the United States against detainees, a new report suggests. A study released this week by notable anti-torture critics reveals that an analysis of emails from the inbox of a deceased US government contractor demonstrates compliance on behalf of the APA with regards to the drafting of so-called enhanced interrogation techniques, or EITs, developed under President [sic] George W. Bush. Nearly 700 emails from the late Scott Gerwehr -- a researcher for RAND Corporation and an "apparent CIA contractor," the study says -- show the APA had numerous contacts with Drs. James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen, the alleged architects of the torture program, beginning in at least 2003.

Food served to inmates at Rikers Island laced with rat poison, lab tests show

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Food served to inmates at Rikers Island laced with rat poison, lab tests show | 29 April 2015 | Meatloaf served to inmates on Rikers Island tested positive for highly lethal rat poison, according to lab testing. An attorney for 22 inmates suing the city Department of Correction ordered the testing on a sample of meatloaf preserved by her client Reginald Dupree. The substance analyzed by EMSL Analytical in New Jersey contained Brodifacoum, a rodenticide. Joanne Squillace, an attorney for the inmates, filed a lawsuit in Brooklyn Federal Court alleging inmates suffered nausea, bleeding and vomiting after eating the meatloaf served in March during lockdown in at the Anna M. Kross jail.

Freddie Gray Severed His Own Spine Just Like Steve Biko Died of a 'Hunger Strike'

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Freddie Gray Severed His Own Spine Just Like Steve Biko Died of a 'Hunger Strike' By Lori Price, www.legitgov.org | 30 April 2015 | On Wednesday we read: A prisoner sharing a police transport van with Freddie Gray told investigators that he could hear Gray "banging against the walls" of the vehicle and believed that he "was intentionally trying to injure himself," according to a police document obtained by The Washington Post. (See: Prisoner in van said Freddie Gray was 'banging against the walls' during ride 29 April 2015.) Are we to actually believe that while in police custody, 25-year-old African American Freddie Gray severed his own spinal cord -- and crushed his own larynx, too?

Recall a death decades earlier of South African anti-apartheid activist, Stephen Bantu Biko. The founder of the Black Consciousness Movement also died in police custody -- and the cause of his death was similarly reported as 'self-inflicted' -- due to an alleged hunger strike. "On 18 August 1977, Biko was arrested at a police roadblock under the Terrorism Act No 83 of 1967 and interrogated by officers of the Port Elizabeth security police...This interrogation took place in the Police Room 619 of the Sanlam Building in Port Elizabeth. The interrogation lasted twenty-two hours and included torture and beatings resulting in a coma. He suffered a major head injury while in police custody at the Walmer Police Station, in a suburb of Port Elizabeth, and was chained to a window grille for a day." (Wikipedia) Yet, The New York Times (Young Black Leader Dies in Detention in South Africa, Raising Fears of New Unrest,' 13 Sept. 1977) stated: "Steven Biko, probably the most influential young black leader in South Africa, died while in police detention last night, allegedly after a hunger striker [sic], and there were fears that his death could increase racial tension. Justice Minister James T. Kruger said in a statement that Mr. Biko, who was 30 years old, had died in a hospital in Pretoria, the administrative capital, after refusing food and water since Sept. 5." Regarding Steve Biko, the BBC reported: "It is understood Mr Biko died in hospital in Pretoria. The government minister of Justice and Police, James Kruger, stated that Mr Biko had been transferred 740 miles (1,191 km) from Port Elizabeth to Pretoria for medical attention following a seven-day hunger strike."

In fact, Steve Biko was beaten and tortured by police, and died as a result of the injuries, en route to a Pretoria hospital. Only after banned South African journalist Donald James Woods smuggled out Biko's autopsy photos did the world learn of the truth about the death of Steve Biko.

Protests return in Ferguson for second night

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Protests return in Ferguson for second night | 29 April 2015 | Protesters returned to Ferguson on Wednesday night, a day after looting, fires and gunfire broke out there during demonstrations over the death of a black man who died of spinal injuries after his arrest by Baltimore police. Several dozen people marched down West Florissant Avenue in the St. Louis suburb on Wednesday night, protesting the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray and calling for police reforms, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. They chanted "No justice; no peace. No racist police," and also referenced the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, who was black and unarmed, by a white Ferguson police officer in August.

At least 60 arrested in NYC Freddie Gray protests

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

At least 60 arrested in NYC Freddie Gray protests | 29 April 2015 | Several hundred people gathered in New York on Wednesday to protest the death of Freddie Gray, a Baltimore man who was critically injured in police custody, and at least 60 people were arrested. Protesters first rallied in Manhattan's Union Square, where they chanted "no justice, no peace" and "hands up, don't shoot," a reference to the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, last year...A police helicopter hovered overhead, and a police loudspeaker warned the protesters that they would be arrested if they marched in the street.

Cops and Freddie Gray protesters clash in New York as thousands take to the streets of six American cities on a third night of anger

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

More than 100 arrested in clashes between cops and Freddie Gray protesters in New York as thousands take to the streets of six American cities on a third night of anger --Protests in the name of Freddie Gray were held in Baltimore, New York, Washington DC, Boston, Houston and Indianapolis Wednesday night | 29 April 2015 | Outrage over the unexplained death of a black man in Baltimore, Maryland prompted nationwide protests against police brutality on Wednesday from Houston to Boston. Baltimore has been the scene of near-nightly protests ever since the April 19 death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who is believed to have been fatally injured while in police custody. However, the most dramatic protests Wednesday night happened in New York City, where a group of activists started an illegal march resulting in the arrests of several protesters in scuffles with police officers trying to maintain order on the streets. More than 100 people were arrested by the New York Police Department, according to reports as up to 1,000 marchers blocked streets - including the entrance to the Holland Tunnel - a main passage under the Hudson River - and the West Side Highway.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders: 'I am running for president'

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders: 'I am running for president' | 29 April 2015 | Promising to fight what he deems "obscene levels" of income disparity and a campaign finance system that is a "real disgrace," independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders said Wednesday he will run for president as a Democrat. In an interview with The Associated Press, Sanders confirmed his plans to formally join the race Thursday. The self-described "democratic socialist" enters the race as a robust liberal alternative to Hillary Rodham Clinton, and he pledged to do more than simply raise progressive issues or nudge the former secretary of state to the left in a campaign in which she is heavily favored.

Washington Post: Freddie Gray Severed His Own Spinal Cord

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Washington Post: Freddie Gray Severed His Own Spinal Cord --Prisoner in van said Freddie Gray was 'banging against the walls' during ride | 29 April 2105 | A prisoner sharing a police transport van with Freddie Gray told investigators that he could hear Gray "banging against the walls" of the vehicle and believed that he "was intentionally trying to injure himself," according to a police document obtained by The Washington Post. The prisoner, who is currently in jail, was separated from Gray by a metal partition and could not see him...The Post was given the document under the condition that the prisoner not be named because the person who provided it feared for the inmate's safety. The document, written by a Baltimore police investigator [sic], offers the first glimpse of what might have happened inside the van. It is not clear whether any additional evidence backs up the prisoner's version, which is just one piece of a much larger probe. [See also: Freddie Gray Severed His Own Spine Just Like Steve Biko Died of a 'Hunger Strike' By Lori Price 30 April 2015.]

Former commander of US nuclear force urges taking missiles off high alert, citing cyberthreats

April 30, 2015 by legitgov

Former commander of US nuclear force urges taking missiles off high alert, citing cyberthreats | 29 April 2015 | Taking U.S. and Russian missiles off high alert could keep a possible cyberattack from starting a nuclear war, a former commander of U.S. nuclear forces says, but neither country appears willing to increase the lead-time to prepare the weapons for launch. Retired Gen. James Cartwright said in an interview that "de-alerting" nuclear arsenals could foil hackers by reducing the chance of firing a weapon in response to a false warning of attack. Essentially adding a longer fuse can be done without eroding the weapons' deterrent value, said Cartwright, who headed Strategic Command from 2004 to 2007 and was vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff before retiring in 2011.

Locked Out: Orioles Fans Booted From Ballgame Amid Unrest

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Locked Out: Orioles Fans Booted From Ballgame Amid Unrest | 29 April 2105 | Baseball in Baltimore was closed to the public for one day. The only shutout in the final score Wednesday at Camden Yards came in the attendance total: Orioles 8, White Sox 2, Fans 0. MLB decided to play the game behind closed doors because of looting and rioting around Camden Yards that broke out amid tensions between residents and police. The turmoil prompting a citywide curfew came hours after the funeral of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who sustained a fatal spinal cord injury while in police custody. The sounds of the game had been silenced.

Explosion, gunshots, chemical exposure part of mock emergency in Barrie

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Explosion, gunshots, chemical exposure part of mock emergency in Barrie | 29 April 2015 | (Central Ontario, Canada) Barrie Police, firefighters and Simcoe County paramedics worked together this morning during a mock emergency. Set inside an abandoned house on Georgian Drive, emergency crews were told a story about a hostage situation, which turned into a volatile chemical threat, followed by an explosion and gunshots. A dozen volunteers spent the morning acting as victims, with some ending up as mock fatalities.

28 Months Later, Review of State Police Response to Sandy Hook Shooting Lags

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

28 Months Later, Review of State Police Response to Sandy Hook Shooting Lags | 28 April 2015 | 28 months since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings [aka drill gone live], Connecticut state police have yet to issue an after-action report analyzing law enforcement response...Sources have said many state police radios did not work inside the school, making it difficult for officers to communicate, a potentially deadly situation with so many officers searching from different areas looking for the shooter. At one point, an officer had to go outside the school and use a cellphone to call headquarters and relay the gravity of the situation. There also were questions about the 911 calls going to the regional dispatch center in Litchfield rather than to the closest state police barracks in Southbury, and whether that affected the response times of troopers who were unfamiliar with the Newtown area.

Sen. Bernie Sanders to launch presidential bid on Thursday

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Sen. Bernie Sanders to launch presidential bid on Thursday | 28 April 2015 | Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a blunt self-described socialist who has become a favorite of progressive activists for his denunciations of big banks and the financial elite, will jump into the 2016 presidential campaign on Thursday, according to two people familiar with his plans. One ally -- who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss Sanders's timetable -- said the 73-year-old senator is expected to make his intentions known this week and hold a rally in Vermont next month. He plans to run as a Democrat, according to his associates.

Baltimore enforces night-time curfew, 'essentially 24 hours per day' for youth

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Martial law is the plan: Baltimore enforces night-time curfew, 'essentially 24 hours per day' for youth | 29 April 2015 | Pepper spray has been deployed to enforce a citywide curfew in Baltimore, Maryland. While scheduled to be lifted at 5:00am, it will recur nightly for a week. Minors' movements will be restricted even further. Violating the restrictions is a misdemeanor. After the curfew kicked in in Baltimore at 10:00pm ET on Tuesday, few patches of protesters remained on the street with authorities warning that violators could face arrest.

2,000 National Guard troops fan out across Baltimore

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

2,000 National Guard troops fan out across Baltimore | 28 April 2015 | A force of 2,000 soldiers from the Maryland National Guard has activated to assist efforts by the Maryland State Police to prevent a repeat of last night's violence in Baltimore. Guard troops are posted at City Hall and throughout the city and various neighborhoods. The Maryland Guard's Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 175 Infantry Regiment, had set up in an area of operations including City Hall, Johns Hopkins Medial Center, and other parts of downtown under the leadership of 1st Lt. Sean Gramm and 1st Lt. Henry Hensley.

Baltimore police use flash bangs, pepper pellets to clear protesters after curfew

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Baltimore police use flash bangs, pepper pellets to clear protesters after curfew | 28 April 2015 | Law enforcement officers in Baltimore used flash bangs and shot pepper pellets to disperse protesters who remained after a 10 p.m. curfew. Hundreds of officers created walls with shields to slowly push the remaining protesters from where they were gathered. Some plastic and glass bottles were thrown at police and at least one of the smoke bombs was thrown back toward officers. It's unclear how many protesters remained after curfew.

Hundreds gather in Chicago to protest police violence

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Hundreds gather in Chicago to protest police violence | 28 April 2015 | In the aftermath of riots in Baltimore, hundreds of protesters gathered Tuesday evening outside Chicago Police Headquarters on the South Side to voice displeasure with a number of shootings by police across the country. The peaceful protest became confrontational shortly after more than 200 people began marching east on 35th Street and King Drive. The crowd pushed back against a line of bicycle police as the protesters chanted "Whose streets? Our streets!"

Gunfire wounds one amid protest near Brown shooting scene in Ferguson

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Gunfire wounds one amid protest near Brown shooting scene in Ferguson | 28 April 2015 | A man was shot as a group of about 50 protesters took to West Florissant Avenue near Canfield Drive Tuesday night. The man was carried to the safety of a chop suey restaurant by bystanders and a Post-Dispatch photographer at the scene. Police who were at the scene to monitor the protest quickly took a person into custody in the shooting and recovered a gun. It was unclear if the shooting was related to the protest.

Aid reaches quake-hit Nepal villagers as death toll passes 5,000

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Aid reaches quake-hit Nepal villagers as death toll passes 5,000 | 28 April 2015 | Hungry and desperate villagers rushed towards relief helicopters in remote areas of Nepal Tuesday, begging to be airlifted to safety, four days after a monster earthquake killed more than 5,000 people. In a televised address late Tuesday, Koirala declared three days of national mourning for the 5,057 people known to have perished in Nepal alone. Around 8,000 people had been injured while the United Nations estimated that eight million people had been affected.

United Express flight with engine fire forced to land in Philadelphia

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

United Express flight with engine fire forced to land in Philadelphia | 28 April 2015 | A plane with an engine on fire was forced to make an emergency landing on Tuesday at Philadelphia International Airport, where it landed safely, according to the airport and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. The fire broke out in the No. 2 engine of United Airlines Express Flight No. 4882, bound for Newark, New Jersey, with 75 people on board, Philadelphia International Airport said on its Twitter feed.

Unarmed Teen Shot, Killed by Police, Cried for His Mother: 'Mommy, Mommy, Please Come'

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Unarmed Teen Shot, Killed by Police, Cried for His Mother: 'Mommy, Mommy, Please Come' | 28 April 2105 | Lucia Morejon cannot escape the haunting memory she has of the final desperate words spoken to her by her teenage son after he was shot by police: "Mommy, Mommy, please come, please come." Hector Morejon, the youngest of five children, made that plea for help after he was shot by a Long Beach, California, police officer, who allegedly thought the 19-year-old was in possession of a firearm Thursday afternoon. The teen, who Lucia Morejon's attorney says was unarmed, directed the cries for help toward his mother when she saw him in an ambulance directly after the shooting. His final words to his mother came, the attorney alleges, after police denied Lucia Morejon access to her son before the ambulance drove away.

Ukrainian Forces Open Fire on Russian Humanitarian Aid Convoy

April 29, 2015 by legitgov

Ukrainian Forces Open Fire on Russian Humanitarian Aid Convoy | 27 April 2015 | The Ukrainian Armed Forces [aka US-backed Nazis, terrorists, and sociopaths] have opened fire on a Russian humanitarian convoy. According to Gleb Kornilov, head of the Relief Fund and the New Russia Donbass, Ukrainian soldiers opened fire on a convoy carrying humanitarian aid to Donbas, killing one person. All the people from the humanitarian convoy were taken prisoner; one of them was injured in the shooting.

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