06-24-2018  11:20 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...

Nigeria: 'Deeply unfortunate killings' as 86 reported dead

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Nigeria's presidency late Sunday announced a "deeply unfortunate killings across a...

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,...

Eric Garner memorial
Colleen Long, Tom Hayes, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — It was nearly a year ago when Eric Garner, standing outside a convenience store on July 17, had the encounter with New York City police that led to his death.

The 43-year-old father of six, accused of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes — sick of being hassled by cops — told police to leave him alone. When he refused to be handcuffed, the 6-foot-2, 395-pound man was taken to the ground.

In cellphone videos viewed more than 2.5 million times, Garner is heard yelling "I can't breathe!" 11 times before he loses consciousness. An autopsy concluded he died in part from neck compressions from the chokehold restraint by police.

Since then, the officer involved avoided criminal prosecution but a federal probe is ongoing. The family has become national advocates for police reform, and the department is reworking how it relates to the public it serves. Here's a look at a year of anger, sadness and change:

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THE FAMILY

Garner's children and grandchildren are doing their best to heal, but it's challenging — and they miss him every day, said his mother, Gwen Carr. She said she's been using her sadness and anger as fuel for reform, and it's helping.

But she's still sad. And angry. And she wants justice for her son.

"I want to see all of those officers stand trial and stand accountable for their gross misconduct," she said.

Carr said the family is planning a memorial in Brooklyn to commemorate Garner's life on the anniversary of his death. She said she can picture her son's response — he'd tell her not to worry too much and not to make a fuss. She said she can picture his face, smiling.

"I want people to be aware of what's happened. I want to make sure they never forget the name of EricGarner," she said. "I'm going to keep that name alive."

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THE COP

Officer Daniel Pantaleo remains assigned to desk duty, doing crime analysis.

Supporters say he's been the target of at least one death threat. As a precaution, the police department has posted patrol cars outside his home and that of his parents on Staten Island around-the-clock. Pantaleo's attorney, Stuart London, said his client still denies intending to harm Garner or even using a chokehold. The officer, despite being demonized by some protesters, also wants get back to full duty.

"He was a dedicated, hard-working cop and, all of a sudden, because of one street encounter, his life has been put on hold," London said. "He understands why, but he's frustrated. It's something he hopes can be cleared up so he can get back to helping the people of this city."

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THE QUEST FOR ANSWERS

After a grand jury in December refused to indict Pantaleo, a groundswell of requests grew from the public and city officials seeking access to the secret testimony and exhibits shown to the jury by the Staten Island District Attorney's Office.

Public Advocate Letitia James argued the secrecy of the proceedings breeds mistrust in prosecutors and contempt for the justice system. But a judge disagreed and refused to release the proceedings, which are kept secret by law. The New York Civil Liberties Union and other agencies have appealed the decision.

The Civilian Complaint Review Board, the police watchdog agency investigating the misconduct claim against Pantaleo and others, is also seeking the minutes — not for public use but for private investigative reasons. And Garner's family has said it intends to sue the city.

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THE FEDERAL INVESTIGATION

Once the state case fizzled late last year, the U.S. Attorney's office in Brooklyn — then led by current U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch — and the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division launched in inquiry into Garner's death to determine whether there's enough evidence to bring a federal case.

In recent weeks, federal investigators have re-interviewed witnesses, including police officers who were at the scene. Despite the video, there's enough ambiguity to the case that a prosecution accusing the officer of deliberately violating Garner's civil rights looks like a long shot. Such cases following grand jury inaction or acquittal at state level are rare, as evidenced by the Justice Department's decision not to file charges against the white policeman who shot to death an unarmed young black man last summer in Ferguson, Missouri.

Even if there's no federal case against Pantaleo, he could still face departmental charges and dismissal.

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THE DEPARTMENT

The New York City Police Department has undergone a series of reforms after the case, including the installation of three-day training for all officers on how to better communicate with the public. More than 20,000 officers were trained on how to de-escalate confrontations in order to avoid physical contact unless necessary.

Police officials said the training was in the works before Garner's death, but was sped up.

Commissioner William Bratton unveiled a new policing plan that puts cops back on the beat, walking their precincts to get better acquainted with shopkeepers and residents. And Bratton has retooled how rookies enter into the academy, eliminating the practice of funneling new cops to the most crime-ridden neighborhoods in favor of spreading them out around the city so they can learn from other officers.

Low-level arrests, like the charge for selling untaxed cigarettes, and summonses have plummeted.

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THE MOVEMENT

Garner's death, along with the deaths of other black men at the hands of white police officers, has helped catalyze a national movement urging police reform. "Black Lives Matter" and "I Can't Breathe" have become rally cries around the country.

Nationwide, departments are scrutinized like never before when an officer kills a civilian — and some have undergone federal probes. Garner's mother and other mothers of men killed by police pressured Gov. Andrew Cuomo to agree to a special prosecutor to investigate deaths by law enforcement and got results: Cuomo signed an order this week putting the state attorney general's office in charge of such probes.

Carr sees more people of all races protesting the treatment of minorities by police than ever before.

"Before when something happened, it was basically people of color because that's who they were targeting, but now everybody, people of color, different races, they all stand up. Because they see this as wrong," she said. "It's not about black or white, it's wrong or right. They see the things are happening wrong."

"Maybe my son's death brought a certain awareness to them."

 

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

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