The Marriott hotel’s groundbreaking was postponed when community members disputed what they saw as too-low wages for workers. Now with minimum pay at $18/hour, the hotel could break ground this year, and some look forward to further economic energy. …read more
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Angry Charlotte residents verbally lashed City Council members for hours, complaining about what they called unaccountable police officers and civilian leaders who have failed to force change as the city marked a week of protests since a police officer fatally shot a black man.
At its Monday night meeting, the council opened the floor to dozens of residents who voiced their opinions about the Sept. 20 shooting of Keith Lamont Scott by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police. Many called on Mayor Jennifer Roberts, Police Chief Kerr Putney and other council members to resign on the seventh day of protests since the shooting.
“It’s going to be rough in these streets until you give justice to our people,” said the Rev. Milton Williams, the final speaker in a three-hour string. “Our city’s in an uproar, and you did not respond.”
Many of the speakers carried signs expressing their anger. One man’s sign called for the repeal of legislation taking effect on Saturday blocking the release of police video without a court order. Many speakers demanded that police release all video footage of the confrontation.
Scott’s family and advocacy groups complain that the department divulged only about three minutes of footage from two cameras. They have urged the police department to release all other video footage it has, as well as audio recordings of communications that could clarify how the situation unfolded. A media coalition is also requesting more footage.
“We have no reason to trust you, and you’re giving us even less,” Khasha Harris told City Council members.
Some speakers brought their children, not only to share in the moment, but in several instances, to address the council. Many in the crowd were brought to tears by the comments of Zianna Oliphant, a child who needed a stool to be seen over the lectern.
“It’s a shame …read more
At the UMass Boston convocation Thursday, Massachusetts Education Secretary James Peyser elicited boos from faculty and student activists when he called for the state’s public colleges and universities to operate on a “new business model” and quoted industrialist Henry Ford. …read more
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Dominique Heaggan attended grade school in Milwaukee and joined the city’s police force as a teenage aide through a program that aims to recruit young people into law enforcement, including minorities.
Heaggan, identified by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel as the black officer at the center of a fatal shooting that sparked two nights of violence, has lived near the shooting scene since at least 2012 and was assigned to patrol that area after becoming a sworn officer.
Sylville Smith, 23, was shot Saturday after police said he fled from a traffic stop. Authorities have said Smith turned toward the officer with a gun in his hand. A few hours later, violence erupted on the city’s largely black north side, with protesters hurling rocks at police and burning six businesses.
An alumni invitation shows Heaggan attended grade school about 10 minutes away from the scene. It’s unclear whether he spent his entire childhood in the area.
Now 24, he joined the Milwaukee Police Department in July 2010 as an aide — essentially an apprentice. As an aide, his responsibilities would have included mostly administrative and clerical duties. Aides are required to complete a college curriculum and a physical fitness program before becoming officers.
Police agencies across the country offer similar programs as a way to recruit future officers and expose minorities to police work in hopes of increasing diversity.
“They may not come into the occupation in the same way people in the majority do,” said Mike Scott, an Arizona State University criminology professor who helped develop the New York City Police Department’s cadet program in the mid-1980s.
MaryNell Regan, executive director of the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission, said the program does not specifically seek minorities but has a goal of “diversity in recruitment.” An online recruiting video linked to …read more
Members of the Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus drafted a letter outlining the urgency of passing criminal justice reforms at the state and local level, many of which were prompted by the nationwide movement to counter police abuse of blacks. …read more
ST. JOSEPH, Mich. (AP) — A jail inmate trying to escape from a western Michigan courthouse wrested a gun from an officer Monday, killing two bailiffs and injuring two more people before he was fatally shot by other officers, a sheriff said.
People scrambled for cover inside the Berrien County Courthouse in St. Joseph in the southwestern corner of Michigan, about 100 miles northeast of Chicago.
“Our hearts are torn apart. … I have known them for over 30 years. It’s a sad day,” Sheriff Paul Bailey said of the bailiffs.
The inmate, locked up on several charges, was being moved from a cell for a courtroom appearance when a fight occurred and he was able to disarm an officer, Bailey said. The sheriff did not say what charges the inmate was facing.
He shot a sheriff’s deputy, killed the bailiffs and then shot a civilian in the arm in a public area, the sheriff said.
The inmate then was fatally shot “by two other bailiffs who came to render aid, along with several other officers,” Bailey said.
“He was trying to escape,” the sheriff said.
The injuries suffered by the deputy and the civilian weren’t considered life-threatening.
The names of the three dead won’t be released until relatives have been notified. Bailey also told reporters that he didn’t yet have certain details on the shooting, including whether the inmate was handcuffed at the time.
Gov. Rick Snyder cut short a visit to Midland and traveled across the state to St. Joseph to meet with investigators and victims’ families.
Snyder called it a “terrible day in a wonderful community.”
White reported from Detroit.
Like BlackAmericaWeb.com on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.
In the latest of four letters to MassDOT, crafted and signed by over twenty Chinatown organizations and individuals and submitted on June 17, the community called for affordable housing units that are truly affordable for Chinatown residents. The average household earns less than $20,000, less than 30% of area median income (AMI) in the greater Boston area. The community also called for expansion of the Reggie Wong Park to accommodate more basketball/volleyball courts, greater protections for community access on the to-be-privately-owned site, and a temporary replacement during construction. …read more
MBTA officials seek to trim costs by providing financial incentives for a number of experienced employees to leave. Some transit and labor activists raise concerns that the workforce already is too small and that if the initiative leads to more privatization, workers and riders could suffer. …read more
An independent investigation has turned up zero evidence of unethical behavior by Flint, MI Mayor Karen Weaver, who had been accused of misusing money designated to help with the water crisis.
“I know the allegations were just that, allegations and they weren’t true,” Weaver told local news station WNEM.
Attorney Brendon Basiga suggested Weaver did nothing illegal when it came to accepting donations during a fundraiser.
“I was provided bank statements with regards to the Friends of Karen Weaver Fund as well as the Karen for Flint Fund. Neither bank statements indicate any questionable deposits and the donation checks that were made [were] supported by copies of the checks themselves,” Basiga said.
It was an email by former city administrator Natasha Henderson that led to the speculation that Weaver was attempting to funnel contributions for the Flint water crisis into a private account.
However, with the validation of her innocence, Weaver said she is moving on.
“I’m glad the investigation has happened and I’m glad it’s over,” she said.
A missing Columbia University student has been reunited with her mother after she was missing for several weeks.
CBS 2 New York reports:
According to Columbia University Public Safety, Nayla Kidd was safe on Monday night.
A source told CBS2 that she had ran away and was renting an apartment in Williamsburg.
Kidd’s family had been searching desperately for her since the 19-year-old went missing earlier this month.
Before being found on Monday, Kidd had last been seen leaving a gathering at a dorm on May 5, it was believed that she had taken the 1 train back towards her Broadway apartment.
Kidd missed all of her final exams after disappearing, something that raised red flags for concerned family members.
“This is not Nayla. She prides herself on doing her very best in school,” Kidd’s mother LaCreis said last week.
Following her disappearance police sources said that all signs of Nayla had halted. Her Facebook was deactivated, credit cards cancelled, and her cell phone was shut off.
A source told CBS2 that she reopened those credit cards with address of her new apartment. She has been reunited with her mother.
(PLEASE RETWEET) Search underway for missing Columbia University student Nayla Kidd https://t.co/M2bPruovvg pic.twitter.com/rrEgIotb5I
— Eyewitness News (@ABC7NY) May 13, 2016
According to the NY Daily News, missing 19-year-old Nayla Kidd may have “fallen off the grid.”
The newspaper reported that Kidd deleted her Facebook page and changed her cellphone and bank account numbers before she disappeared. The police believe that by doing so, it will be very difficult to track her down.
Her family told the press that this behavior is out of character. “This is not Nayla,” her mother La Creis Kidd told Channel 2 news.
It’s unknown if Kidd …read more