06-23-2018  6:29 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 ...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Wildfire near Maupin more than doubles in size

MAUPIN, Ore. (AP) — A wildfire burning brush and grass near Maupin in north-central Oregon has more than doubled in size to 36 square miles (93 square kilometers).Fire officials say Saturday's efforts will include the use of helicopters to protect Maupin.The wind-driven wildfire is mostly...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local):1:40 p.m.Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquake ever recorded have been honored...

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

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Give up after scandals? Television history shows otherwise

NEW YORK (AP) — Say this about TV creators in 2018 — they don't give up easily.Three current shows — "Roseanne," ''Transparent" and "House of Cards" — have been crippled by scandal, but each plans to continue without their disgraced stars."The bottom line is...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Sanders says she was told to leave Virginia restaurant

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was booted from a Virginia restaurant...

Stars flock to the Dior debut of Kim Jones at Paris menswear

PARIS (AP) — In a week marked by big debuts, it was designer Kim Jones' turn at Dior Men on Saturday.The...

US moves 100 coffins to inter-Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Daniel Holtzclaw being escorted to courtroom in Oklahoma City
NOMAAN MERCHANT and SEAN MURPHY, Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A teenager's mother clapped her hands and screamed with joy, and a former police officer hung his head and sobbed, as a jury convicted him of raping her daughter and sexually assaulting seven other women.

The mother of Daniel Holtzclaw's youngest accuser said she hopes his guilty verdict will show everyone that sexual misconduct by police officers has to be taken seriously.

"It's a problem for the nation," she told The Associated Press.

Holtzclaw was convicted Thursday night of preying on the teenager and other women he met while working his beat in a minority, low-income neighborhood. He could spend the rest of his life in prison; the jury recommended 263 years, including 30-year sentences for each of four first-degree rape convictions.

The jury found Holtzclaw guilty of 18 counts connected to eight of the 13 women, and acquitted him of 18 others.

Sexual misconduct committed by law enforcement officers is a problem that has concerned police chiefs for years.

Holtzclaw's case was among those examined in a yearlong Associated Press investigation that revealed about 1,000 officers nationwide had lost their licenses for sex crimes or other sexual misconduct over a six-year period.

The AP's finding is undoubtedly an undercount, since not every state has a process for banning problem officers from re-entering law enforcement, and states that do vary greatly in how they report and prosecute wrongdoers.

One factor stands out, however — victims tend to be among society's most vulnerable: juveniles, drug addicts, and women in custody or with a criminal history.

That's exactly who authorities accused Holtzclaw of targeting.

After Oklahoma City Police received a complaint from a grandmother who said Holtzclaw forced her to perform oral sex during a traffic stop, investigators identified a dozen other women who said he had victimized them as well.

The youngest, a 17-year-old girl, was the last to testify at his trial.

The girl recalled Holtzclaw pulling up in his police car as she walked home one night in June 2014. Holtzclaw drove her to her family's home and walked her to the porch, where he told her he had to search her. She said he grabbed her breasts, then pulled down her pink shorts and raped her.

He asked if it was the first time she had ever had sex with a cop, she testified. Her DNA was found on his uniform trousers.

Holtzclaw's attorney, Scott Adams, asked the girl about perceived inconsistencies in her testimony as well as her use of drugs. She pushed back, telling the lawyer: "I'm really getting upset by the way you're coming after me."

The jury convicted Holtzclaw of first-degree rape, second-degree rape and sexual battery in the girl's case.

Her mother said her daughter doesn't want to talk about it anymore, and is relieved that her "long journey to justice" is over.

The AP does not identify victims of sex crimes without their consent and is not using the mother's name, to avoid identifying her daughter.

Several of Holtzclaw's accusers had been arrested or convicted of crimes, and his attorney made this a cornerstone of his defense. Adams questioned several women at length about whether they were high at the time, and noted that most didn't come forward until investigators identified them as possible victims.

Ultimately, the strategy failed.

Holtzclaw was convicted of one of two charges related to a woman who testified he gave her a ride home, then followed her into her bedroom and raped her, telling her, "This is better than county jail."

That woman testified in orange scrubs and handcuffs, because she had been jailed on drug charges hours before appearing in court, but the jury still convicted Holtzclaw of forcible oral sodomy in her case.

The defense attorney declined to comment after the verdict.

Holtzclaw, who turned 29 on Thursday, was a former college football star who joined law enforcement after a brief attempt at pursuing an NFL career. He was fired before the trial began, and as the verdict was read, he rocked back and forth, sobbing in his chair.

His mother, sister and father — a police officer in Enid, about 100 miles northwest of Oklahoma City — were in the courtroom, along with at least one of his accusers and several black community leaders.

Questions of race also surrounded the trial. Holtzclaw is half-white, half-Japanese. All his accusers are black. The case was heard by an all-white jury, and after the verdict, Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater said Holtzclaw's attorneys were squarely responsible for that.

Some supporters of the women had questioned whether the jury would fairly judge their allegations, and Prater said he had wanted a jury that was a "good cross-section of our community," but defense attorneys eliminated every potential black juror during the selection process.

Prater said he hopes people will see that his office and local law enforcement will stand up for any one, no matter their race or background.

"I don't care what they look like, where they go to church, what god they worship, or how much money they make," he said. "We stand up for people in this community."

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Merchant reported from Dallas. Associated Press National Writer Matt Sedensky in West Palm Beach, Florida, and AP reporter Tim Talley in Oklahoma City contributed to this report.

 

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