06-24-2018  11:13 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Teen uses sign language to help blind and deaf man on flight

BOSTON (AP) — A teenager is being credited with coming to the aid of a blind and deaf man during a flight from Boston to Portland, Oregon.Clara Daly, of Calabasas, California, says she and her mother were traveling last week when the flight attendants asked if anyone knew American Sign...

18-year-old driver dies after colliding with log truck

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon State Police say an 18-year-old girl has died after colliding with a log truck on Highway 101 near Beaver.Law enforcement officials say Mikayla Michelle Howard was driving a 2003 Saab when it crossed into the other lane for an unknown reason on Friday morning....

New Mexico residents to testify on atomic bomb fallout

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Residents of a New Mexico Hispanic village near the site of the world's first atomic bomb test say they were long ignored about the lingering health effects and were expected to share their stories with Congress.The Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium plans to...

Small plane hits car after missing runway near Snohomish

SNOHOMISH, Wash. (AP) — A small plane hit a car after overshooting the runway at an airfield near Snohomish.The Seattle Times reports that three people, including a child, were in a single-engine plane when it was approaching the Harvey Air Field on Saturday.Lt. Rick Hawkins of the Snohomish...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

The Latest: Meek Mill debuts 'Stay Woke' song at BET Awards

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on the 2018 BET Awards, which are being presented Sunday at the Microsoft Theater (all times local):7:45 p.m.Rapper Meek Mill has performed a new song, "Stay Woke," on the BET Awards with a striking performance that touched on police violence against black youth...

Anita Baker, H.E.R., Meek Mill shine at BET Awards

The 2018 BET Awards barely handed out any trophies with big stars like Cardi B, Drake and Kendrick Lamar absent, but the show included superior performances by rising singer H.E.R, rapper Meek Mill and gospel artist Yolanda Adams, who paid tribute to Anita Baker and nearly brought her to...

Complete list of winners at Sunday night's 2018 BET Awards

The complete list of winners of the 2018 BET Awards, presented Sunday at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles:— Video of the year: Drake— Best male R&B/pop artist: Bruno Mars— Best female R&B/pop Artist: Beyonce— Best male hip hop artist: Kendrick Lamar—...

ENTERTAINMENT

The Latest: Prosecutors cancel Stormy Daniels meeting

The Latest on the investigation into the business interests of Trump's longtime personal attorney, Michael Cohen (all times local):8:30 p.m.Stormy Daniels' lawyer says the porn actress' meeting with federal prosecutors in New York who are investigating President Donald Trump's longtime lawyer has...

Complete list of winners at Sunday night's 2018 BET Awards

The complete list of winners of the 2018 BET Awards, presented Sunday at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles:— Video of the year: Drake— Best male R&B/pop artist: Bruno Mars— Best female R&B/pop Artist: Beyonce— Best male hip hop artist: Kendrick Lamar—...

US prosecutors cancel Stormy Daniels meeting in Cohen probe

Porn actress Stormy Daniels was scheduled to meet with federal prosecutors in New York on Monday as part of their investigation into President Donald Trump's longtime personal attorney, but the meeting was abruptly cancelled late Sunday after it was reported by news organizations, her attorney...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Anita Baker, H.E.R., Meek Mill shine at BET Awards

The 2018 BET Awards barely handed out any trophies with big stars like Cardi B, Drake and Kendrick Lamar absent,...

US prosecutors cancel Stormy Daniels meeting in Cohen probe

Porn actress Stormy Daniels was scheduled to meet with federal prosecutors in New York on Monday as part of their...

Thousands flee as flames race across dry rural California

CLEARLAKE OAKS, Calif. (AP) — Wind-driven wildfires destroyed buildings and threatened hundreds of others...

Saudi women in driver's seat as longstanding ban is lifted

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Saudi women steered their way through busy city streets on Sunday, driving to...

Australia and Vanuatu to negotiate security treaty

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia said on Monday it would negotiate a security treaty with Vanuatu,...

Indonesia identifies likely location of ferry in crater lake

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesia has identified the suspected location of an overcrowded ferry that sank...

By Josh Rubin. Matt Smith and Chelsea J. Carter CNN



The court-martial of admitted Fort Hood gunman Nidal Hasan came to a screeching halt Wednesday as the lawyers assigned to back up his defense asked to withdraw from the case.
The court-martial of admitted Fort Hood gunman Maj. Nidal Hasan came to a screeching halt Wednesday as the lawyers assigned to back up his defense asked to withdraw from active participation in the case.
Hasan is representing himself on charges that he shot and killed 13 people and wounded 32 in the November 2009 rampage at the installation, near Killeen, Texas. But the presiding judge, Col. Tara Osborn, ruled before the court-martial began that defense lawyers could act as stand-by counsel during the proceedings.
Osborn was holding a closed-door hearing with defense lawyers and Hasan late Wednesday morning, and recessed the court-martial until Thursday.
The lawyers' roles had been limited to helping Hasan file motions and coaching him on procedural matters. But before testimony could resume Wednesday morning, Lt. Col. Kris Poppe told Osborn that Hasan was "working in concert with the prosecution to achieve a death sentence."
"It becomes clear that his goal is to remove impediments and obstacles and is working towards a death penalty," Poppe said. He and the two other lawyers said they were still willing to defend Hasan if needed but couldn't ethically stand by to help him at this point.
Hasan objected to Poppe's characterization, calling it "a twist of the facts." But he refused to submit his objection in writing, a move that Osborn requested to avoid revealing privileged information, and insisted on being heard in open court.

On Tuesday in court, Staff Sgt. Alonzo Lunsford stared hard at the Army psychiatrist in a wheelchair who hours earlier admitted to carrying out the 2009 massacre at Fort Hood, appearing to brace for questions from the man now acting as his own attorney.

The man, Maj. Nidal Hasan, just stared back.

The drama of Hasan facing and possibly questioning those who survived his attack was expected to continue Wednesday, a day after Hasan left no room for question about who was behind the shooting rampage and why.

"The evidence will clearly show that I am the shooter," Hasan said Tuesday at the outset of his court-martial. "The evidence presented with this trial will show one side. The evidence will also show that I was on the wrong side. I then switched sides."

Hasan's blunt declaration came during his brief opening statement before a panel of 13 senior officers who will decide his fate. He is charged with killing 13 people and wounding 32 on November 5, 2009, at a processing center for soldiers heading to Afghanistan and Iraq. He faces a possible death sentence, if convicted.

Hasan is representing himself, and is expected to cross-examine witnesses as well as possibly testify on his own behalf.

The courtroom turned silent as Lunsford, who was shot seven times during the rampage, was called to testify. He was the first of several survivors scheduled to testify against Hasan.

Lunsford recounted how the gunman rose from a chair in the processing center, shouted "Allahu Akbar," pulled out a pistol and began shooting.

"It was a state of panic," Lunsford said.

Lunsford, a health care specialist, described how his friend and colleague, physician's assistant Michael Cahill, tried to hit Hasan with a chair to stop the shooting; Hasan shot him dead. Soldiers tried to flee or take cover inside the processing center as Hasan fired dozens of shots.

As Lunsford was checking behind him, "Major Hasan is turning the weapon on me," he said. "He has a laser on his weapon and it goes across my line of sight and I blink. In that time, he discharges his weapon. The first round, I'm hit in the head."

A second shot caught Lunsford in the back. He decided to play dead for a while before changing his mind and deciding to run for the door. He made it out of the building but was shot five more times outside, he testified.

Hasan continued shooting at Lunsford even as he was receiving first aid outside the processing center, before police arrived. Officers shot and wounded Hasan, ending the rampage and leaving him paralyzed from the chest down.

After the prosecution finished questioning Lunsford, the judge asked Hasan whether he had any questions for the witness.

"I have no questions," Hasan said.

Hasan also declined to question Michelle Harper, who worked at the deployment center and was inside when the shooting began. Prosecutors played a recording of her 911 call, where she pleaded for help.

A U.S.-born citizen of Palestinian descent, Hasan had been scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan before the killings. Prosecutors hope to show that the devout Muslim had undergone a "progressive radicalization," giving presentations in defense of suicide bombings and about soldiers conflicted between military service and their religion when such conflicts result in crime.

Hasan did not want to deploy to fight against other Muslims and believed "that he had a jihad duty to kill as many soldiers as possible," said Col. Michael Mulligan, the lead prosecutor in the case.

Investigators found 146 spent shell casings in the room where the attack began, Mulligan said. Hasan carried two laser-sighted pistols and 420 rounds of ammunition, his pockets lined with paper towels to muffle the sounds of the magazines banging together, he said.

Internet searches on Hasan's computer used keywords like "terrorist killing," "innocent," "Quran," "fatwas" and "suicide bombings," Mulligan said.

Hasan told the panel in his opening statement, "We mujahedeen are trying to establish the perfect religion." But, he added, "I apologize for the mistakes I made in this endeavor."

The mujahedeen consider themselves as warriors who defend the Islamic faith.

Hasan told his family he had been taunted after the al Qaeda attacks of September 11, 2001. Investigations that followed the killings found he had been communicating via e-mail with Anwar al-Awlaki, the Yemeni-American radical cleric killed by a U.S. drone attack in 2011.

The case was first set to begin in March 2012, but has been delayed repeatedly, notably over a previous judge's unsuccessful demand that the beard Hasan has grown while in custody be forcibly shaved.

Among others scheduled to testify include Chief Warrant Officer Christopher Royal, who survived the shootings with two bullet wounds to his back. The slugs left him with nerve damage that numbs his left arm and leg and sends streaking pains "shooting up and down my back."

It's also left invisible scars as well, post-traumatic stress that has hurt his ability to perform his duties as a computer specialist and left him unable to feel safe in his own country.

Royal escaped the gunfire only to go back into the processing center in an attempt to tackle Hasan.

"I had escaped without being wounded," Royal said. "I got ... in the parking lot, and then I said, 'I can't let him get away with this.' And I wasn't even thinking that I didn't have a weapon. I just knew that I couldn't let him get away."

Lunsford said Tuesday he encountered Royal outside the building.

"I ask him, 'Am I out of the building yet?'" Lunsford testified. "He says I am, and to play dead.

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