06-06-2020  7:34 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NORTHWEST NEWS

Thousands March Peacefully for 7th Night in Portland

NBA Portland Trail Blazer star Damian Lillard walked at the front of the crowd arm-in-arm with young demonstrators

Districts Jettison School Police Officers Amid Protests

Mayor Ted Wheeler: “Leaders must listen and respond to community. We must disrupt the patterns of racism and injustice.”

Two De La Salle North Grads Forge Thrilling Paths

A med student and a Fulbright scholar reflect on their time at the school.

OHSU Resident Uses TikTok, Student Outreach, to Show Representation in Medicine

A group of high school students weighing careers in health care were recently greeted on Google Meet by a physician whose social media star is on the rise.

NEWS BRIEFS

Resources for Supporting Racial Justice in Oregon

Learn about how to get involved with local organizations that have been fighting for decades for racial justice. ...

Business Donates Profits

On Sunday, June 7, the owners of Pine State Biscuits are donating all of their profits to the NAACP and ACLU from all five of their...

NAMC-Oregon Statement on Racism, Inequity & Violence Against Black People

All of us at NAMC-Oregon are angered and deeply saddened by the police murder of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and the...

Civil Rights and Social Justice Organizations Call for a National Day of Mourning Today

At 12:45 p.m. PT today, the NAACP is asking for everyone to take a moment of silence for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. ...

ACLU Files Class Action Lawsuit Against Minneapolis Police for Attacking Journalists at Protests

The lawsuit’s lead plaintiff, Jared Goyette, a journalist covering the demonstrations, was shot in the face with a rubber bullet ...

Misconduct case against sheriff’s deputy reopened

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Washington County jail deputy, who was placed on leave after a racist email surfaced, has been indicted on charges of first-degree official misconduct tied to a separate case.The Washington County Sheriff’s Office began an investigation into Rian Alden after...

Thousands continue marching, protesting in Portland

PORTLAND, Ore (AP) — Thousands of protesters marched for the seventh consecutive night Thursday in Portland, Oregon to decry the death of George Floyd. NBA Portland Trail Blazer star Damian Lillard walked at the front of the crowd arm-in-arm with young demonstrators as they crossed the...

Kansas, Missouri renew Border War with 4-game football set

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas and Missouri are resuming their bitter Border War in football after the former Big 12 rivals agreed to a four-game series in which each school will play two home games beginning in September 2025.The fourth-longest rivalry in college football dates to 1891, but...

OPINION

Responding to Challenging Questions in a Nation Still in Upheaval

Nate McCoy attempts to answer tough questions in a letter to his sons ...

Mayor Ted Wheeler: Portland and the Path Forward

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler invites Portlanders, as public servants, to join him "in insisting that we never return to business as usual." ...

Local Business Leaders Share Messages of Hope

President, CEO of SAIF says each of us must move forward in "our understanding of the problem, in holding ourselves accountable for our own attitudes and biases, and in coming together, not apart." ...

Time to Stop Messing Around and Strike at the Root of Police Violence

Thomas Knapp says the root of police violence is the creation of "police forces" as state institutions separate from the populace and dedicated to suppressing that populace on command ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

The Latest: Italy protests peaceful in solidarity with Floyd

TOP OF THE HOUR:— Thousands in London protest police violence, racial injustice.— DC officials expect city's largest protest against police brutality since Floyd's death— DC rally for Aug. 28 anniversary of MLK's “I Have A Dream” speech.— Minneapolis-St....

Protesters support Floyd, Black Lives Matter on 3 continents

BERLIN (AP) — Thousands of people rallied in Australia and Europe to honor George Floyd and to voice support Saturday for what is becoming an international Black Lives Matter movement, as a worldwide wave of solidarity with protests over the death of a black man in Minneapolis highlights...

No 'silver lining': Trump faces voter backlash amid crises

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — At the end of one of his most turbulent weeks in office, President Donald Trump was eager on Friday to boast of a better than expected jobs report to argue the country is poised for a booming recovery. Benjamin Lund was not moved.The 45-year-old Milwaukee man is a...

ENTERTAINMENT

CMT special focuses on good news work of everyday heroes

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Country stars highlighted the heroic work of citizens and communities around the country who were coming together to help each other in the middle of the coronavirus epidemic during the "CMT Celebrates Our Heroes" TV special.But Wednesday's show largely didn't address...

Ill-considered posts lead to lost jobs amid protests, crisis

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A writer from a “Law & Order" spin-off and the play-by-play broadcaster for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings found themselves out of jobs after making social media posts this week that their bosses found too incendiary or insensitive, highlighting an apparent...

Luminaries Lost: A look at some of the artists lost to virus

A fashion designer who made it to the runways of Paris and New York but never left her Dominican home. An Oklahoma boy who became the toast of 1990s Nashville. A comedian whose off-the-wall trio helped create a golden age in British comedy. In the fourth installment in a series, The Associated...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP Exclusive: MLB plan saves big-spending teams 0M each

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Yankees, Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers would each save more than 0...

One man lays wreaths in Normandy on this unusual D-Day

BENOUVILLE, France (AP) — The essence of war remembrance is to make sure the fallen are never forgotten....

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's alternate reality in time of anguish

WASHINGTON (AP) — "Vicious dogs.” “Ominous weapons.” Injured police. Gagging...

Japan advocate for daughter, others abducted to NKorea dies

TOKYO (AP) — Shigeru Yokota, a Japanese campaigner for the return of his daughter and more than a dozen...

One man lays wreaths in Normandy on this unusual D-Day

BENOUVILLE, France (AP) — The essence of war remembrance is to make sure the fallen are never forgotten....

China urges citizens to shun Australia as dispute simmers

BEIJING (AP) — China is advising its citizens not to visit Australia, citing racial discrimination and...

McMenamins
Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman the Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Working with the CIA, the New York Police Department maintained a list of "ancestries of interest" and dispatched undercover officers to monitor Muslim businesses and social groups, according to new documents that offer a rare glimpse inside an intelligence program the NYPD insists doesn't exist.

The documents add new details to an Associated Press investigation that explained how undercover NYPD officers singled out Muslim communities for surveillance and infiltration.

The Demographics Unit, a squad of 16 officers fluent in a total of at least five languages, was told to map ethnic communities in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and identify where people socialize, shop and pray.

Once that analysis was complete, according to documents obtained by the AP, the NYPD would "deploy officers in civilian clothes throughout the ethnic communities."

The architect of this and other programs was a veteran CIA officer who oversaw the program while working with the NYPD on the CIA payroll. It was an unusual arrangement for the CIA, which is prohibited from spying inside the U.S.

After the AP report, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the NYPD has kept the city safe and does not take religion into account in its policing. The NYPD denied the Demographics Unit exists.

"There is no such unit," police spokesman Paul Browne said before the first AP story ran. "There is nothing called the Demographics Unit."

Internal police documents show otherwise. An NYPD presentation, delivered inside the department, described the mission and makeup of the Demographics Unit. Undercover officers were told to look not only for evidence of terrorism and crimes but also to determine the ethnicity of business owners and eavesdrop on conversations inside cafes.

A police memorandum from 2006 described an NYPD supervisor rebuking an undercover detective for not doing a good enough job reporting on community events and "rhetoric heard in cafes and hotspot locations."

How law enforcement agencies, both local and federal, can stay ahead of Islamic terrorists without using racial profiling techniques has been hotly debated since 9/11. Singling out minorities for extra scrutiny without evidence of wrongdoing has been criticized as discriminatory. Not focusing on Muslim neighborhoods has been equally criticized as political correctness run amok. The documents describe how the nation's largest police force has come down on that issue.

Working out of the police department's offices at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, the Demographics Unit maintained a list of 28 countries that, along with "American Black Muslim," it considered "ancestries of interest." Nearly all are Muslim countries.

Police used census data and government databases to map areas it considered "hot spots" as well as the ethnic neighborhoods of New York's tri-state area, the documents show.

Undercover officers known as "rakers" - a term the NYPD also denied existed - were then told to participate in social activities such as cricket matches and visit cafes and clubs, the documents show.

Police had a list of "key indicators" of problems. It included obvious signs of trouble such as criminal activity and extremist rhetoric by imams. But it also included things commonly seen in neighborhoods, such as community centers, religious schools and "community bulletin boards (located in houses of worship)."

Rakers were also used to monitor neighborhood sentiment. After CIA drone attacks in Pakistan for instance, current and former officials said, undercover officers would move through Pakistani neighborhoods to listen for angry rhetoric or anti-American comments.

At least one lawyer inside the police department has raised concerns about the Demographics Unit, current and former officials told the AP. Because of those concerns, the officials said, the information gathered from the unit is kept on a computer at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, not in the department's normal intelligence database. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the intelligence programs.

The AP independently authenticated the NYPD presentation through an interview with one official who saw it and by reviewing electronic data embedded in the file. A former official who had not seen the presentation said the content of the presentation was correct. For the internal memo, the AP verified the names and locations mentioned in the document, and the content is consistent with a program described by numerous current and former officials.

In an email Tuesday night, Browne disputed the AP's original story, saying the NYPD only follows leads and does not simply trawl communities.

"We do not employ undercovers or confidential informants unless there is information indicating the possibility of unlawful activity," Browne wrote.

That issue has legal significance. The NYPD says it follows the same guidelines as the FBI, which cannot use undercover agents to monitor communities without first receiving an allegation or indication of criminal activity.

After the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the CIA sent a respected veteran officer, Lawrence Sanchez, to New York, where he worked closely with the NYPD. Officials said he was instrumental in creating programs such as the Demographics Unit and met regularly with unit supervisors to guide the effort. After a two-year rotation in New York, Sanchez took a leave of absence, came off the agency's payroll and became the NYPD's second-ranking intelligence official. He formally left the agency in 2007 and stayed with the NYPD until last year.

The CIA recently dispatched another officer to work in the Intelligence Division for what officials described as a management sabbatical. A U.S. official familiar with the NYPD-CIA partnership said Sanchez's time in New York was a unique assignment created in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. But the official said the current officer's job was much different and was an opportunity for him to learn from an organization outside the CIA.

Both the CIA said and the NYPD have said the agency is not involved in domestic spying and said the partnership is the kind of counterterrorism collaboration Americans expect.

The NYPD Intelligence Division has unquestionably been essential to the city's best counterterrorism successes, including the thwarted plot to bomb the subway system in 2004. Undercover officers also helped lead to the guilty plea of two men arrested on their way to receive terrorism training in Somalia.

"We throw 1,200 police officers into the fight every day to make sure the same people or similarly inspired people who killed 3,000 New Yorkers a decade ago don't come back and do it again," Browne said earlier this month when asked about the NYPD's intelligence tactics.

The Demographics Unit had officers who spoke Arabic, Bengali, Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu, according to the police presentation. The undercover officers were divided into teams based on ethnicity. Arab officers could blend into Arab neighborhoods and Southwest Asian officers, those from Pakistan and Afghanistan, could more easily blend into those neighborhoods.

Rep. Yvette Clarke, a Democrat who represents much of Brooklyn and sits on the House Homeland Security Committee, said the NYPD can protect the city without singling out specific ethnic and religious groups. She joined Muslim organizations in calling for a Justice Department investigation into the NYPD Intelligence Division. The department said it would review the request for an investigation.

Clarke acknowledged that the 2001 terrorist attacks made Americans more willing to accept aggressive tactics, particularly involving Muslims. But she said Americans would be outraged if police infiltrated Baptist churches looking for evangelical Christian extremists.

"There were those who, during World War II, said, `Good, I'm glad they're interning all the Japanese-Americans who are living here,'" Clarke said. "But we look back on that period with disdain."

---

Online:

View the NYPD documents: http://bit.ly/q5iIXL and http://bit.ly/mVNdD8

---

Goldman contributed from Islamabad, Pakistan. Apuzzo and Goldman can be reached at dcinvestigations(at)ap.org or at http://twitter.com/mattapuzzo and http://twitter.com/goldmandc

© 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

image of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Calendar

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

The Skanner Photo Archives