09-22-2021  5:16 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Cascadia Names New Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Bukhosi Dube will lead innovative “integrative health” model

How to Tell DEQ to Step Up Its Emissions Caps – And Go Further

Two activists created a website to inform the most climate-vulnerable on how to take action.

Washington Governor Inslee Asks Feds for Medical Staffing Help

Washington Gov. Jay Inlsee has asked the federal government for assistance staffing hospitals and long-term care facilities in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Oregon Dems Void Power-Sharing Redistricting Deal With GOP

The Democratic speaker of the Oregon House on Monday rescinded a deal she made with Republicans to share power as lawmakers redraw political boundaries and add an additional U.S. House seat for the state.

NEWS BRIEFS

Seattle Mayor Extends COVID Eviction Moratoriums

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said Tuesday the city's eviction moratoriums will remain in place through Jan. 15, 2022, rather than...

Oregon House and Senate Democrats Condemn Newberg School Staff Member's Racist Conduct and Use of Blackface

A staff member at Mabel Rush Elementary School in the Newberg School District attended work on Friday in blackface ...

New Plaque Honors Black Pioneer Merchant A.H. Francis

Throughout the mid-1800s, Francis was an active abolitionist, using his position to fight for Black people from western New York to...

IPAC Announces September 21 Kickoff of the Portland Peace Initiative

A new coalition intends to show how peace is possible in Portland ...

OHSU Offers Free COVID-19 Testing by Appointment at Portland Expo Center

This newest drive through testing site is open Monday through Friday. ...

COVID case delays contentious redistricting in Oregon

A broken power-sharing deal, the lingering possibility of a Republican walkout and a COVID-19 case are adding greater uncertainty to whether Oregon legislators will successfully redraw the state’s political districts ahead of a tight deadline. Stakes are high as Oregon gained...

Grand Ronde tribe reclaims Willamette Falls in Oregon

After a private blessing and a prayer, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde invited gathered media to watch as an excavator tore into a wall of the old, abandoned paper mill that the tribe says has stood on its ancestral grounds for too long. The tribe held a symbolic...

College Football Picks: Neutral sites for 2 ranked matchups

Last week, college football gave fans one of its tastiest, and unfortunately rare, treats when Auburn visited Penn State. Good teams. Great setting. Entertaining game. What college football is all about. This week, not so much. The...

Bazelak, Missouri make quick work of SE Missouri, 59-28

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Connor Bazelak squeezed a full day of production into one half Saturday as he led Missouri to a 59-28 victory over Southeast Missouri. Bazelak completed 21 of 30 passes for 346 yards and three touchdowns for the Tigers (2-1). “You...

OPINION

Homelessness, Houselessness in the Richest Country in the World: An Uncommon Logic

When and why did the United States of America chose the wealth of a few over the health, wealth, and well-being of so many ...

American Business Leaders Step Up to Fight Inequities in the South

With COVID-19 still an omnipresent concern and the country’s recovery still very much in jeopardy, individuals, families, and communities are struggling to deal with issues that have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. ...

Waters Statement on 20th Anniversary of September 11 Attacks

Twenty years ago today, our nation suffered devastating terrorist attacks on our soil and against our people that wholly and completely changed the world as we knew it. ...

Letter to the Editor: Reform the Recall

Any completely unqualified attention seeker with ,000 for the candidate‘s filing fee can be the largest state in the Union’s next governor ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Melvin Van Peebles, godfather of Black cinema, dies at 89

NEW YORK (AP) — Melvin Van Peebles, the groundbreaking filmmaker, playwright and musician whose work ushered in the “blaxploitation” wave of the 1970s and influenced filmmakers long after, has died. He was 89. In statement, his family said that Van Peebles, father of the...

South Carolina's Confederate monument protection law upheld

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that a state law preventing anyone from moving a Confederate monument or changing the historical name of a street or building without the Legislature's permission is legal. But in the same ruling, the...

UN anti-racism event, rejected by some, recommits to goals

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. General Assembly pledged Wednesday to redouble efforts to combat racism around the world, commemorating a landmark but contentious 2001 anti-racism conference by holding an anniversary meeting once again riven with divisions. Looking back on the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Done with delays, Academy movie museum rolls out red carpet

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The projectors are rolling. The ruby slippers are on. Many an Oscar sits glistening. The shark has been hanging, and waiting, for nearly a year. Nine years after it was announced, four years after its first projected open date, and five months since its...

Review: Jake Gyllenhaal carries claustrophobic ‘The Guilty’

An emergency dispatch center doesn’t exactly sound like the most visually exciting place to set an entire film. But the technical limitation of being imprisoned in a soulless office while high stakes action takes place off screen can be an inspired storytelling gimmick in the right hands, as it...

R. Kelly's rules protected him, prosecutors in sex trial say

NEW YORK (AP) — R. Kelly got away with sexually abusing underage victims for more than two decades by ruling his inner circle enablers with an iron fist, a prosecutor told jurors on Wednesday at the R&B singer’s sex-trafficking trial. “The defendant set rules, lots of...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

‘My whole life in a van’: Islanders flee Spanish volcano

TODOQUE, Canary Islands (AP) — A wall of lava up to 12 meters (40 feet) high bore down on a Spanish village...

Florida makes quarantine optional for exposed students

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A day after assuming his job, Florida's newly appointed surgeon general on Wednesday signed...

Under Taliban, thriving Afghan music scene heads to silence

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A month after the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan, the music is starting to go...

The Latest: Kenya's president outlines his UN priorities

The Latest on the UN General Assembly: ___ UNITED NATIONS — With Kenya...

Fendi, Del Core lead Milan fashion's runway return

MILAN (AP) — Italy’s fashion capital is again alive with the sound of shoppers swarming boutiques and editors...

UK coroner asks for public inquiry into Novichok poisonings

LONDON (AP) — A coroner presiding over an inquest into the death of British woman who was poisoned by a...

Attorney Ben Crump
James Harper Special to the NNPA from the Florida Courier

DAYTONA  BEACH, Fla. – The ex-wife of a DeLand, Fla., man who was run over and killed by a local police car in May wants the Volusia County medical examiner removed or suspended for her conclusion that "there was no evidence that he was struck by the vehicle.''

In an interview, Attorney Ben Crump and his client, Krystal Brown, accused Dr. Marie Herrmann, the medical examiner, of "professional negligence, at worst intentional deceit."

Marlon Brown was run over and killed by Police Officer James Harris during a pursuit on May 8. DeLand is about 15 miles from Sanford, the city that gained global attention in the Trayvon Martin case. Crump is the attorney for Martin's parents. With advice from Crump, Krystal Brown filed a complaint against Herrmann with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Medical Examiner's Commission.

The Florida Courier also has learned that the Florida State Conference of the NAACP reached out to Tom Battles with the Department of Justice about the DeLand case.

"He is aware of the situation and his office is prepared to investigate the death of Marlon," Cynthia Slater said.

As first vice president of the Florida NAACP, Slater said she is responsible for providing oversight to the DeLand NAACP, "so I have been working with the West Volusia Branch on this issue since the beginning."

In a letter to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Medical Examiner's Commission obtained by the Courier, Krystal Brown wrote: "I am requesting that the Medical Examiner's Commission perform an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding Marlon Brown's death and whether Dr. Herrmann violated any professional or ethical regulations or worse engaged in criminal conduct to conceal the truth about what caused Marlon Brown's death."

Brown ex-wife is appalled that a high-speed car chase over a possible seat belt violation led to the death of Marlon Brown, the father of her three children.

According to a police report, Volusia County Sheriff's Deputy John Szabo noticed that Brown was driving on May 8 without using a seat belt. Szabo turned on his emergency lights, Brown took off and a chase began  around 12:36 a.m.DeLand Police Officers Harris and Justin Ferrari joined the pursuit of Brown.  Along the way, Ferrari abandoned the chase.

Harris drove to the left of Ferrari's patrol car and continued the pursuit until Brown abandoned his vehicle and took off running through a vegetable garden.

Mrs. Brown and Attorney Crump believe Brown's death was caused by Harris' car running him over.

The dash cam of the patrol car caught the incident on video, which Mrs. Brown and Crump believe clearly proves their conclusions. A grand jury chose not to file vehicular homicide charges against Harris.

Crump said he didn't know if the grand jury had viewed the video. He said he does know the medical examiner's report was read to the grand jury.

Her ex-husband's death will not go in vain said Mrs. Brown, who already has settled at $550,000 civil lawsuit with the city of DeLand. Harris was fired May 31.

In the termination letter to Harris, DeLand police Chief Bill Ridgway Harris wrote: "I have determined that you have failed to meet probationary standards. Effective immediately, your employment with the City of DeLand has been terminated. This decision was made in the best interests of the department, the city and the community."

Mrs. Brown was married to Marlon for 10 years before they divorced in 2006.

Though the marriage ended, Mrs. Brown said they remained friends. "I still loved him. We talked a couple a times a week," she said.

Mrs. Brown said she had spoken to him the day before the accident.

She said she was home the night of the accident and was contacted shortly after it occurred.

"I went down there right after it happened," she noted.

Brown, who is a licensed nurse, has two degrees, but considers her full-time job raising the couple's three children — Marlon Brown Jr., 12; Armani Brown, 13; and DeAndre Williamson, 23.

No matter what happens, Brown says she vows to speak up to fight against laws governing high-speed chases to prevent what happened to her ex-husband from happening to anyone else.

She noted she has started her crusade working with the DeLand Police Department on their pursuit policy.

"I would like to be the spokesman to end illegal high-speed chase pursuits," she said.

If Brown was not wearing a seat belt, the police did have the right to pull him over.

On June 30, 2009, a law in Florida went into effect that allows officers to cite an individual for driving without a seatbelt on, even if no other violations are involved.

Prior to this law, officers could issue a civil citation for failure to wear a seat belt but could not use this violation as reason to stop a motorist.

Harris not being charged came as no surprise to Crump.

"If the matter was reversed, (and) Marlon was the driver of car, he would have been charged (for running someone over)," Crump noted.

Even though Brown's family has settled a civil suit with the city, Crump said they have the right to continue pursuing criminal charges.

"Neither one should affect the other," Crump said, referring to the criminal and civil cases.

Judging from the video and other evidence, Crump said he is convinced Harris drove in a reckless manner, which led to Brown's death.

"We don't know what the grand jury saw," he said. "All we know is they presented the medical examiner's report. We believe it was inaccurate – evidence shows this."

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