06-24-2018  3:46 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 ...

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....

Marion County deputies investigating suspicious death

LYONS, Ore. (AP) — Law enforcement officials are investigating after a man was found dead in a pond near his home in Lyons.The Marion County Sheriff's Office says deputies were called to the scene Saturday afternoon after the body was found. Detectives also responded to the scene because the...

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

Authorities investigating fatal Minneapolis police shooting

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota state authorities are investigating after Minneapolis police shot and killed a black man they say was firing a handgun as he walked outside.People gathered for a Sunday afternoon protest at a police station and a vigil near the north Minneapolis shooting scene...

Jews, Muslims in Berlin team up on bike rides against hatred

BERLIN (AP) — Some 25 Jews and Muslims rode tandem bicycles through the German capital on Sunday in a protest against growing anti-Semitism and attacks on Muslims in the country.Some were rabbis and imams, others included women in headscarves and Jewish community members donning skullcaps...

Association removes Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from award

CHICAGO (AP) — A division of the American Library Association has voted to remove Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from a major children's book award over concerns with how the early-to-mid 20th century author portrayed blacks and Native Americans.The Association for Library Service to Children's...

ENTERTAINMENT

Brigitte Nielsen, 54, has given birth to her fifth child

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Brigitte Nielsen says she has given birth at age 54.The model, actress and reality star and her 39-year-old husband Mattia Dessi released a statement to People magazine Saturday saying their daughter Frida was born Friday in Los Angeles and weighed 5 pounds, 9 ounces (2.3...

Association removes Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from award

CHICAGO (AP) — A division of the American Library Association has voted to remove Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from a major children's book award over concerns with how the early-to-mid 20th century author portrayed blacks and Native Americans.The Association for Library Service to Children's...

'Jurassic World' sequel stomps its way to 0 million debut

NEW YORK (AP) — The dinosaurs still rule the box office."Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom" surpassed expectations to open with 0 million in ticket sales in U.S. and Canada theaters over the weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday. While that total didn't approach the record-breaking...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

US restaurants host refugee chefs who offer a taste of home

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — At San Francisco's Tawla restaurant, Muna Anaee powdered her hands with flour and...

UK euroskeptics urge PM May to prepare for 'no deal' Brexit

LONDON (AP) — Pro-Brexit politicians and business figures have urged British Prime Minister Theresa May to...

Roseanne Barr in interview: 'I made myself a hate magnet'

NEW YORK (AP) — In an emotional interview, Roseanne Barr said she definitely feels remorse for the racist...

Switzerland awaits FIFA judgment on 'provocative' gestures

MOSCOW (AP) — Despite goal celebrations seen as inflaming political tensions with Serbia, the head of...

Sweden player condemns racist abuse after World Cup loss

KRASNODAR, Russia (AP) — Sweden midfielder Jimmy Durmaz says the racist abuse aimed at him over social...

DJ Calvin Harris stoked by Harry Kane nod to 'One Kiss'

NIZHNY NOVGOROD, Russia (AP) — Harry Kane led England into the round of 16 at the World Cup then gave a nod...

Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha
Michael Biesecker, Associated Press

Craig Stephen Hicks, 46, was charged with three counts of first-degree murder in Tuesday's shooting of Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, of Chapel Hill; Yusor Mohammad, 21, of Chapel Hill; and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19, of Raleigh. Photo via Twitter

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — A long-running parking dispute between neighbors motivated a man to kill a woman, her newlywed husband and her sister at a quiet condominium complex near the University of North Carolina campus, police said Wednesday.

Beyond the parking arguments, police didn't comment further on the motivation or details of the crime, but a Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization asked authorities to address speculation — much of it on social media — about possible religious bias.

Craig Stephen Hicks, 46, was charged with three counts of first-degree murder in Tuesday's shooting of Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, of Chapel Hill; Yusor Mohammad, 21, of Chapel Hill; and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19, of Raleigh.

Barakat and Mohammad were married, and Abu-Salha was Mohammad's sister.

Hicks appeared briefly in court Wednesday. He spoke only to answer that he understood the charges and to confirm an indigency affidavit. District Judge Marcia Morey said he would be appointed a public defender and held without bond. She scheduled a probable cause hearing for March 4.

Police said Hicks was cooperating and that their preliminary investigation showed that the parking dispute was the motive.

But outrage spread among American Muslims who viewed the homicides as an outgrowth of anti-Muslim opinions in the U.S. Many posted social media updates with the Twitter hashtags #MuslimLivesMatter and #CallItTerrorism.

"Based on the brutal nature of this crime ... the religious attire of two of the victims, and the rising anti-Muslim rhetoric in American society, we urge state and federal law enforcement authorities to quickly address speculation of a possible bias motive in this case," Nihad Awad, of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said in a statement.

In an email, Chapel Hill police Chief Chris Blue said, "We understand the concerns about the possibility that this was hate-motivated, and we will exhaust every lead to determine if that is the case."

Durham district attorney Roger Echols said he couldn't discuss a motive. Asked whether Hicks could be charged with a hate crime, he said the facts of the case were still under investigation.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office in North Carolina that encompasses Chapel Hill didn't immediately return messages seeking comment about whether federal prosecutors were involved or looking into a possible hate crime.

Abdullah Antepli, director of Muslim affairs at nearby Duke University, issued a statement calling for people not to jump to conclusions over the motive for the killings.

At UNC, Barakat was a second-year dental student, and Yusor was scheduled to begin dental studies in the fall.

Both had graduated from North Carolina State University, school spokesman Mick Kulikowski said. Barakat graduated with a business administration degree in the spring of 2013. Mohammad graduated in December with a biological sciences degree.

Abu-Salha was a sophomore design major who had started classes last fall, Kulikowski said.

Muneeb Mustafa, 23, of Cary, attended the same Raleigh mosque as Barakat.

"He was a completely genuine guy. Loving, caring, friendly, smart," Mustafa said. "He was an ideal human being. He was a role model."

Mustafa said they last saw each other about a month ago, playing in a basketball tournament staged by the Muslim Student Association at UNC, Mustafa said. Barakat, his wife of less than two months and his sister were all Muslim, Mustafa said.

Barakat's family was from Syria, and he was raising money to help refugees of the country's civil war, Mustafa said. Mohammad traveled to Turkey last summer to help treat dental problems in Syrian refugees in that country, Mustafa said.

The neighborhood where the victims were found — about three miles east of campus — consists mostly of apartments and condominiums rented by students. Residents said they'd never before seen police or had crime problems there.

"It's a very quiet community," resident Bethany Boring told WRAL-TV. "It's a lot of graduate and professional students. You know, professional families."

Police tape hung near the apartment where the victims were found, but otherwise there was no indication of a crime scene. Outside the victims' apartment, a woman's bicycle with a helmet was parked by the stairs.

Shadi Wehbe, a UNC graduate who has lived in the complex since 1999, said that two weeks ago, a woman came to his door about 10 p.m. to ask him to move his car. Some of the parking spots are assigned, and others are open. Wehbe said parking had never been a problem and no one had asked him to move his car before, but he realized he was in the wrong spot and moved his car one place over.

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Associated Press writers Jonathan Drew in Durham, Emery Dalesio in Raleigh and Eric Tucker in Washington contributed to this report.

 

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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