10-15-2019  2:45 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Hank Willis Thomas Exhibit Opens at Portland Art Museum

One of the most important conceptual artists of our time, his works examine the representation of race and the politics of visual culture

Grocery Workers Union Ratifies Contract with Stores

The United Food and Commercial Workers Union has agreed a three-year contract for stores in Oregon and Southwest Washington

PCC Weighing Community Input on Workforce Training Center, Affordable Housing in Cully

Portland Community College is compiling the results of door-to-door and online surveys

Lawsuit Filed Against Hilton Hotels in “Calling His Mother While Black” Discrimination Case

Jermaine Massey was ousted from the DoubleTree Hotel in Portland where he was a guest and forced to find lodging at around midnight

NEWS BRIEFS

Protesters Rally in Ashland to Demand 'Impeach Trump Now'

Activists are rallying in Ashland Sunday Oct, 13 to demand impeachment proceedings ...

Black Women Help Kick off Sustainable Building Week

The event will be held at Portland’s first and only “green building” owned and operated by African-American women ...

Voter Registration Deadline for the November Special Election is Oct. 15 

The Special Election in Multnomah County will be held on Nov. 5, 2019 ...

Franklin High School’s Mercedes Muñoz Named Oregon Teacher of the Year

In a letter of recommendation, Muñoz was referred to as “a force of nurture.” ...

Founder of Black Panther Challenge Creates Brand To Support Mental Health

The launch comes during Mental Health Awareness Week. The creators say they want people around the world to know that they aren’t...

Authorities identify 63-year-old man in hunting accident

LONGVIEW, Wash. (AP) — Oregon county authorities have identified the man killed in a suspected accidental shooting while hunting near Washington state lines.The Longview Daily News reports that Columbia County Sheriff's Office identified 63-year-old Martin Fox of Portland.County deputies,...

Name of man released in Portland suspicious death Monday

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Portland police have released the name of a man who died of a gunshot wound Monday in North Portland.The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Ricky Malone Sr.'s death is being investigated as a homicide.Police say the man was found hurt during a welfare check Monday morning in...

Bryant bounces back to lead Missouri over Mississippi

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Last week, when he heard a pop in his left knee after being hit low, Missouri quarterback Kelly Bryant briefly saw his college football career pass before his eyes. The injury wasn't as bad as it looked, and Bryant played like his old self in a 38-27 victory over...

Missouri out to stop Ole Miss ground game in SEC matchup

Ole Miss coach Matt Luke has watched every game Missouri has played this season, and he was no doubt excited by the way Wyoming ran wild against the Tigers in their season opener.It should have portended good things for the Rebels' own vaunted rushing attack.But the more Luke looked at the video,...

OPINION

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

Rep. Janelle Bynum Issues Response to the Latest Statement from Clackamas Town Center

State legislator questions official response after daughter questioned for ‘loitering’ in parking lot ...

Why Would HUD Gut Its Own Disparate Impact Rule?

"You can’t expand housing rights by limiting civil protections. The ’D’ in HUD doesn’t stand for ‘Discrimination’" ...

Despite U.S. Open Loss, Serena Williams Is Still the Greatest of All Time

Serena Williams lost her bid for what would have been her sixth U.S. Open Singles title ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Chief: Officer's Proud Boys membership didn't break policy

A Connecticut police officer's membership in the Proud Boys, a far-right group known for engaging in violent clashes at political rallies, didn't violate department policies, the town's police chief has concluded in response to a civil rights group's concerns.The East Hampton officer, Kevin P....

President of Bulgarian soccer resigns after fan racism, loss

SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Criticized around Europe for the racist behavior of Bulgarian fans and under pressure from the country's prime minister following a run of poor results, the president of the country's soccer federation resigned on Tuesday.A few hours later, Bulgarian special police...

Money, hatred for the Kurds drives Turkey's Syrian fighters

BEIRUT (AP) — The Syrian fighters vowed to kill "pigs" and "infidels," paraded their Kurdish captives in front of cameras and, in one graphic video, fired several rounds into a man lying on the side of a highway with his hands bound behind his back.They are part of the self-styled Syrian...

ENTERTAINMENT

Only 3 returning big network shows see rise in live viewers

NEW YORK (AP) — ABC's sophomore drama "A Million Little Things," reality show "Shark Tank" and the Fox first-responders drama "9-1-1" have something in common that they can take pride in.Over the first three weeks of the television season, they are the only three of 49 prime-time shows...

AP Exclusive: Julie Andrews reflects on her Hollywood years

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Everyone is on their best behavior when Julie Andrews is around.It's early June in Los Angeles and Andrews is coming to film segments for a night of guest programming on Turner Classic Movies and speak about her new book, "Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years," which...

Gina Rodriguez apologizes for singing N-word lyric

NEW YORK (AP) — Gina Rodriguez has apologized for singing along on her Instagram story to a Fugees verse that includes the N-word.The "Jane the Virgin" actress deleted the short video she posted Tuesday and replaced it with her apology, but not before memes and other backlash ensued....

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Mexico: Families of slain police angry, AMLO defends policy

MORELIA, Mexico (AP) — Grieving family members of the 13 police officers killed in an apparent cartel...

LeBron James no longer King James for Hong Kong protesters

HONG KONG (AP) — When the ball smashed into a photo of LeBron James' face stuck above the hoop and dropped...

12 Democrats meet for first debate since impeachment inquiry

WESTERVILLE, Ohio (AP) — Joe Biden is facing baseless but persistent allegations of wrongdoing overseas...

Haiti president breaks silence, says will not resign

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — President Jovenel Moïse broke his silence Tuesday and said it would be...

The Latest: Putin and Erdogan discuss situation in Syria

CEYLANPINAR, Turkey (AP) — The latest on Turkey's offensive in northern Syria (all times local):11:55...

Trump's sanctions won't bite a vulnerable Turkish economy

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The sanctions the U.S. announced against Turkey this week over its offensive in...

McMenamins
By Rhetta Peoples Special to the NNPA from the Florida Sun

ORLANDO - The American justice system has often been scrutinized for being one-sided or biased when it comes to justice.

According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, an agency of the U.S. Department of Justice, African Americans make-up more than 38 percent  of national prison inmates, who are also predominantly male.  However, the U.S. Census Bureau reports Black people are only approximately 14 percent of the U.S. population.

 A Chief Judge in Central Florida is proof that even national statistics have exceptions.

Often referred to as the "Judge's Judge", Chief Judge Belvin Perry, Jr., of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court, is the highly respected African American judge with a lead role in one of the most highly publicized court cases in history. Judge Perry received his Juris Doctor from Thurgood Marshall School of Law and received both his Bachelor of Science degree in History and Masters of Education from Tuskegee University.

 Judge Perry has served as Chief Judge of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court since 2001 and is a member of the Florida Bar, Orange County Bar Association, Texas Bar Association, and Trial Court Budget Commission.  Perry said, "I'm humbled and grateful for the confidence of my fellow judges in re-electing me to this position."

 The irony of his position is significant in the overall view of criminal justice in America because African American men highly populate U.S. prisons and jails.  Specific to the Casey Anthony case, it is rare to see White women being a part of statistics that have been dominated by African American men in what is sure to be one of America's most historical and watched cases.  

 Judge Perry is not only an icon in the African American community but also an inspiration to African American men.  His direct manner and voice has been the subject of commentaries and radio mocks because of his southern accent or lack of what broadcasters may call a "General American Speech", like that of President Barack Obama or General Colin Powell and is typically what mainstream Americans expect to hear from a person of a higher position. 

 However, journalists and talk show hosts neglect the real issues when they focus on the accent.  Dr. Cornel West, Attorney Willie Gary and the late Attorney Johnny Cochran, among others, also spoke with a certain flare of their culture yet, each left footprints in their areas of expertise.

 Judge Perry is set to preside over the trial in which Anthony is charged with first-degree murder charge of her 2-year old daughter Caylee Anthony, who had not been seen for more than a month before she was reported missing by her grandmother, Cindy Anthony, after she admitted to smelling an odor similar to that of a "dead body" in her Casey Anthony's car. 

 Months later, Caylee was found dead only a short distance from the Anthony family home.  The child's death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner, even though the cause of death remains undetermined.

 Anthony became a suspect after she neglected to report her daughter missing, exhibited strange behavior, searched numerous times online for chloroform, an ingredient in children's medicine that is potentially hazardous, law enforcement found a mysterious stain in the back of her car that resembles a toddler in the fetal position and she gave authorities a vivid description of "zanny the nanny", a female baby-sitter who she claimed mysteriously disappeared with her daughter.  To date, none of her allegations have turned out to be credible.

 Anthony still maintains her innocence, claiming she was protecting her daughter from people who she claimed threatened to hurt her and her family if she were to report the child missing.

 Defense attorney Jose Baez has filed several motions requesting to dismiss key evidence from the trial, including the infamous stain that appears to resemble a child in the fetal position found in the back of Anthony's car.  Judge Perry ruled the evidence could be admitted into evidence.  Also, Judge Perry denied the request of the defense to exclude the expert opinion testimony of Dr. David Hall, a Botanist who testified that he analyzed fragments of roots from the area in which the victim's body was recovered.  

Recently, Judge Perry denied the defense motion to exclude alleged identification of the chemical composition of human decomposition odor, or testimony relating to air, carpet samples or paper towels tested by Oakridge Laboratories.

 Judge Perry is not only known as a well-respected judge, but also for his days as a prosecutor. His reputation as a sound prosecutor was solidified in what came to be known as the Black Widow trial, in which Judy Buenoano was sentenced to death by electric chair for the 1971 murder of her husband. She was also convicted for the murder of her son and attempted murder of her fiancé in 1983.  She was also believed to be responsible for the 1978 death of her boyfriend in Colorado. 

The Court, under the direction of Judge Perry, kept the location of the selection of the jury unknown until the actual day of jury selection. Currently, the jury is being chosen in Pinellas County, an area located on the outskirts of Tampa, Florida.  Reportedly, there are four African Americans currently in the jury pool. Once the jurors are selected, they will be transported to the Orlando area where they are expected to stay in area hotels for the duration of the trial, which is expected to take up to eight weeks. To date, Judge Perry has dismissed dozens of jurors based on conflicts with the case.  He said, "I do not want to have to do this again," respectfully referring to not having the taxpayers or the court spend time, energy, and money to retry this case. Perry said, "I am not naïve enough to think we'll encounter no one who has heard this case, but the goal is to find people who have not been oversaturated with the media." 

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