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Black Miss Texas Says Cop Called Her ‘Black B***h’ Before Wrongful Arrest

May 26, 2017 bcic_admin 0

Miss Black Texas 2016 recently posted on Twitter that a cop referred to her as a “Black b***h” before wrongfully arresting her in North Texas, reports The Huffington Post.

Police brutality and Abuse of Power from a Police Chief. Let me talk to my lawyer and I’ll fill y’all in #blacklivesmatter

— Carmen Sensei (@CarmenSierraaa) May 22, 2017

From The Huffington Post:

Carmen Ponder, an intern at the Hunt County district attorney’s office and a recent graduate of Texas A&M University, tweeted Tuesday that she experienced “road rage” from Kerry Crews, the police chief in Commerce, Texas…

“Whatever, you black b***h,” Crews allegedly told Ponder after she reminded him that it’s “illegal” for a 14-year-old to drive.Ponder — who also she was handcuffed and charged with evading arrest after Crews called her the curse word and she exited a North Texas Walmart — is pushing for charges against Crews, reports The New York Post.

SOURCE: The Huffington Post, New York Post

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Wrongfully Convicted Philadelphia Man Exonerated After 24 Years

May 26, 2017 bcic_admin 0

A Philadelphia man was exonerated after serving 24 years of a life sentence for a murder he did not commit, CBS News reports.

Shaurn Thomas walked out of prison on Tuesday after a court threw out his 1993 conviction. A single witness, who later recanted, testified that Thomas, 16 years old at the time, was involved in the slaying of a businessman.

Thomas, who always maintained his innocence, received legal assistance toward his exoneration from the Innocence Project.

#shaurnthomas is a free man @innocence #ProBono @dechertllp hugs his mother pic.twitter.com/9UI4nhfQwH

— Beth Huffman (@bethhuff59) May 23, 2017

“This is a man who has not only been proclaiming his innocence, but has been doing everything he can to prove it,” Marissa Bluestine, who is executive director of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, told CBS News Philadelphia. “This is one of those cases that should not have gone to trial, but unfortunately it did.”

Now 43 years old, Thomas said he always believed he would be cleared, and like many other exonerated prisoners, he does not hold a grudge.

SOURCE: CBS News

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11th Grader Told Her Afro Needed To Be ‘Fixed’ And Couldn’t Be Worn In School

May 26, 2017 bcic_admin 0

https://t.co/LWkzpdveCz Stop punishing our kids & start embracing the hair naturally growing from our heads #JenesisJohnson #naturalhair

— Clinton Johnson (@ClintonGJohnson) May 21, 2017

A 17-year-old Florida student is lashing out at her school for telling her that her natural hair was a problem.

According to WCTV, Jenesis Johnson was told by her teacher at North Florida Christian School in Tallahasee that the afro she’d been wearing for the past seven months needed to be done and that it was a was a distraction to classmates.

Her response? “My hair is fixed.”

She also says that she was asked in front of other students “how long did she plan on wearing that way?”

Two days later she called down the assistant principal’s office who then allegedly said to her, “Your hair is extreme and faddish and out of control. It’s all over the place.”

WCTV reported that the school’s handbook stresses that students shouldn’t wear “faddish or extreme hairstyles, and hair should be neat and clean at all times.” If they do “the administration will make the decision on any questionable styles.”

And while Johnson’s mother says that she understands the handbook’s rules, she also believes that it sends a culturally incompetent message to students of color to like her daughter.

“You might say that it didn’t fit the handbook,” Lisa Johnson said. “But what she heard is a woman telling her is that she’s not pretty; her hair does not fit society.”

In addition, Johnson was told that while she can finish the semester with her hair as is, but if she returns when school starts back up in the fall with this same doo she will receive a refund for the semester and no be allowed to come back.

This report comes weeks after …read more

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Karen Chen

May 26, 2017 bcic_admin 0

Karen Chen, former co-director of the Chinese Progressive Association, now takes up the role of executive director, with the transition official in July. Lydia Lowe, CPA’s other co-director, steps down after 30 years in CPA in order to direct the Chinatown Community Land Trust. …read more

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Black Women Call Out DNC For Excluding Them From Leadership

May 26, 2017 bcic_admin 0

Tuesday morning, a slew of Black women, including activists, community leaders, elected officials and others released an open letter to Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez calling for a meeting to discuss the state of Black women and the Party.

Black women have clearly been an integral part of the election of the last few Democratic presidents, and are loyal to the Democratic party beyond any other demographic. In fact, the letter notes that, “Black women voters are the very foundation to a winning coalition,” yet the party does not reciprocate this loyalty in any meaningful way.

Boldface names like Tamika Mallory, Marcia Fudge and Star Jones signed their names to the letter which reads in part,

We have voted and organized our communities with little support or investment from the Democratic Party for voter mobilization efforts. We have shown how Black women lead, yet the Party’s leadership from Washington to the state parties have few or no Black women in leadership. More and more, Black women are running for office and winning elections — with scant support from Democratic Party infrastructure.

Investing in Black women’s political leadership is a solid return on investment, one that is rooted in facts and data. In recent years, Black women have proven to be the most active voting demographic in the nation. In 2008 and 2012, 70 percent of eligible Black women cast ballots, accounting for the highest voter turnout of any racial or gender group, proving that our voting power can and has determined elections. A closer look at the data shows that in 2012 Barack Obama won re-election by 4.9 million votes.

Black women cast a total of 11.4 million ballots, providing the margin he needed to win. This past November, even with a clear lack of voter mobilization investment and a decrease in overall …read more

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Black Mothers Sue Mississippi Over Education Inequality

May 25, 2017 bcic_admin 0

Four Black mothers filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against Mississippi’s elected leaders and state education officials, alleging that they oversee an education system that discriminates against Black students, CBS News reports.

Mississippi violates a 19th century federal law that allowed the state to rejoin the union after the Civil War, the suit alleges. The law prohibits Mississippi from depriving its citizens of the “school rights and privileges” guaranteed in the state’s constitution.

“From 1890 until the present day, Mississippi repeatedly has amended its education clause and has used those amendments to systematically and deliberately deprive African Americans of the education rights guaranteed to all Mississippi schoolchildren by the 1868 Constitution,” argues the lawsuit, filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center, on behalf of the mothers.

According to the SPLC, the law mandates a “uniform system of free public schools” for all children.

The mothers, who have children attending public school, say Mississippi deprives their children of an equal education because they are Black and stuck in failing schools.

Indeed, all 19 of Mississippi’s failing school districts are predominantly Black, while high-performing school districts across the state are predominantly White, notes the SPLC, which blames part of the problem on unequal school funding.

Failing Black schools “lack textbooks, literature, basic supplies, experienced teachers, sports and other extracurricular activities, tutoring programs, and even toilet paper,” according to the civil rights organization.

The list of defendants includes Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, House Speaker Philip Gunn, all Republican elected officials, state school Superintendent Carey Wright and the nine state Board of Education members, CBS News reported.

SOURCE: CBS News

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Cosby Trial Jury Includes Two African-Americans

May 25, 2017 bcic_admin 0

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The jury that will hear the sex assault case against Bill Cosby will include two blacks among its 12 members.

Prosecutors and the defense team on Wednesday also selected three of six alternates, and two of them are black.

Cosby’s lawyers had complained this week that prosecutors were trying to keep blacks off the jury with their seven strikes. The judge, though, found prosecutors had other valid reasons to strike two black women earlier this week. The jury makeup of 17 percent is higher than the 13 percent black population in Allegheny County.

Meanwhile, Judge Steven T. O’Neill removed a white male juror chosen Monday for undisclosed reasons. Lawyers then chose a white woman to replace him.

Cosby, the 79-year-old black actor-comedian once known as America’s Dad for his beloved portrayal of Dr. Cliff Huxtable on “The Cosby Show,” is charged with drugging and molesting a Temple University women’s basketball team manager at his home near Philadelphia in 2004. He has called the encounter consensual.

Dozens of other women have made similar accusations against Cosby, 79, but the judge is allowing only one of them to testify. The jury from Pittsburgh will be sequestered nearly 300 miles from home.

Half of the jury pool being questioned Wednesday said they’ve formed an opinion on his guilt or innocence, while one knows Cosby or his family. They aren’t necessarily disqualified if they can convince the judge they can put that aside and focus on the evidence.

One-third said they were more likely to believe police testimony, nearly one-fourth had been convicted of a crime and nearly one-fifth said someone close to them had been sexually assaulted.

The defense raised concerns about the racial makeup of the jury Tuesday when only one black was seated among the first 11 jurors. The initial jury pool had 16 blacks among …read more

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Ramad Chatman Is Spending Seven Years In Prison For A Crime He Did Not Commit

May 25, 2017 bcic_admin 0

Ramad Chatman was found not guilty of armed robbery by a jury; however, will still serve up to seven years in prison after a judge ruled he breached his probation sentence for another crime. He delivered himself to police in November 2015, when he discovered he was a suspect for an armed robbery at a convenience store in July 2014.

“He turned himself in because he knew he was not guilty.” – Janice Chatman, Ramad Chatman’s grandmother

The 24-year-old was already serving a five year probation term for breaking and entering in 2012. Ramad had stolen a television worth $120 and it was his first offense. When Ramad was on trial for the store robbery, the judge decided it was likely he committed the robbery and re-sentenced Ramad for the original crime of stealing a TV and ordered him to serve 10-years in prison, back dated to the day of the original crime.

Even though court documents have showed he has done everything asked of him of the law during his probation, including checking in, paying restitution, performing (and finishing) community service and keeping his job, justice is still not served.

The jury ruled he was innocent of the crime; however, Judge John Niedrach disagreed with the verdict and charged him for the original crime.

So to break it down: police never recovered the weapon from the convenience store robbery, couldn’t track the stolen money, and even couldn’t connect him to the robbery (other than being identified by the shop assistant), nevertheless, Ramad Chatman will remain in prison for violating the terms of his first probation order.

This is AmeriKKKa.

PHOTO: 11 Alive News

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Bill Cosby’s Lawyers Say Prosecution Wants To Limit Black Jurors

May 24, 2017 bcic_admin 0

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Bill Cosby’s lawyers accused Pennsylvania prosecutors of trying to “systematically” keep blacks off the jury after prosecutors used their strikes to keep two black women off the panel.

Judge Steven O’Neill for now rejected the argument after prosecutors said the second woman was a former detective who had sued Pittsburgh and may have an anti-government bias.

The 11 people chosen so far include one black juror. Lawyers return Wednesday to seek the final juror and six alternates.

O’Neill said he would revisit the issue if defense lawyer Brian McMonagle offered statistical evidence to back his discrimination complaint.

The 100 people summoned to the Allegheny County courthouse so far included 16 people of color. A new jury pool will be summoned Wednesday..

A black woman who said she knows only “basic information” about the case and a white man who initially expressed a tendency to believe police are now on the panel.

The male juror said he can put that aside if instructed to do so, and defense lawyers accepted him on the panel.

The jury so far consists of six men and five women. Only one of them is black. Cosby has said he believes the case may have racial overtones.

Lawyers need 12 jurors and six alternates total for the trial starting June 5 near Philadelphia.

Cosby is accused of drugging and molesting a woman at his home in 2004.

PHOTO: AP

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Plan To Overhaul Baltimore’s Police Goes Before The Public

April 6, 2017 bcic_admin 0

BALTIMORE (AP) — A proposed plan to overhaul Baltimore’s troubled police force faces public scrutiny Thursday despite the Department of Justice’s efforts to delay the hearing.

A judge on Wednesday denied an attempt to delay the public airing, calling the request by President Donald Trump’s administration a “burden and inconvenience.”

The Justice Department asked for the delay earlier this week, saying it needed time to review the plan and determine whether the proposal would hinder efforts to fight violent crime. U.S. District Judge James Bredar said the hearing would go on as scheduled Thursday.

Pushing back the hearing at the last minute would be a “burden and inconvenience to the court, other parties, and most importantly, the public,” the judge said.

Bredar noted that it was “highly unusual” that both the city and the Justice Department had requested the hearing to allow Baltimore residents to publicly comment on the proposed consent decree. To accommodate the throngs of people, other judges cleared their dockets for the day, and the hearing was widely advertised, the judge said.

“The primary purpose of this hearing is to hear from the public,” he wrote. “It would be especially inappropriate to grant this late request for a delay when it would be the public who were most adversely affected by a postponement.”

Justice Department spokesman Ian Prior declined comment.

Last month, a dozen organizations and about 50 people submitted 195 pages of written comments on the proposed agreement, which the city reached with the Justice Department during the last days of the Obama Administration. Newly minted Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo this week announcing his intention to reconsider all existing consent decrees.

Wednesday’s order, while tailored specifically to the hearing in Baltimore, could signal complications for Sessions as he seeks to review agreements already entered into federal courts with earlier Justice Department …read more

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