Monthly Archives: June 2015

Federal Report Faults Police Actions During Ferguson Unrest

By Associated Press

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Police antagonized crowds gathered to protest in Ferguson, violated free-speech rights and made it difficult to hold officers accountable, according to a U.S. Department of Justice report summary obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The summary cited “vague and arbitrary” orders to keep protesters moving that violated their rights of assembly and free speech. It is part of a longer “after-action” report to be delivered this week to top police officials in Ferguson, St. Louis city and county and the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

The summary suggests that unrest that followed the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown was aggravated by the community’s hostility toward Ferguson police and worsened when authorities didn’t quickly divulge details of his death, the newspaper ( ) reported Tuesday.

“Had law enforcement released information on the officer-involved shooting in a timely manner and continued the information flow as it became available, community distrust and media skepticism would most likely have been lessened,” according to the document.

Brown, who was black and unarmed, was fatally shot Aug. 9 by officer Darren Wilson, who is white. A grand jury and the Justice Department both declined to prosecute Wilson, who later resigned, but another Justice Department report released …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Bank Of America, Wells Fargo Donate To Charleston Victims Fund


According to the Charlotte Observer, Bank of America has given $100,000 to the victims of the June 17 Charleston shooting and to a Charleston African American history museum which is set to open in 2017.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and we hope this support will help those impacted as we mourn this tragedy,” said Kim Wilkerson, South Carolina president, Bank of America, which did not issue a press release about it.

The Observer report says half of BOA’s donation will go to the Low Country Ministries – Reverend Pinckney Fund, which provides support to the families of the shooting victims at the Mother Emanuel AME Church. The massacre left nine dead, including the late Rev. Clementa Pinckney, whose namesake fund also supports his ministries.

The other half of the bank’s donation will go to the new International African American Museum, which will tell the history of African Americans of Charleston and the rest of the U.S. and “serve as a new place of healing for the community.” It will open in 2017.

Additionally, this week, San Francisco-based Wells Fargo Bank, which operates its largest employment hub in Charlotte, also said it has committed $100,000 to the Pinckney …read more

Source:: Black America Web

How The Latest Congressional Inaction May Hurt Small Businesses & Main Street

By Congressman Gregory W. Meeks

Export-Import Bank of the United States, money, small business, Supreme Court, politics

Source: (Photo by Alex Wong) / Getty

On June 30th, the Export-Import Bank’s charter will expire if Congress refuses to act. House Republicans are in full swing to diminish Ex-Im bank’s ability to fulfill its mission — supporting American jobs through American exports. Without reauthorization, the Bank can’t provide new loans, which will only bolster foreign companies that are competing with U.S. companies in global markets.

The 80-year old bank plays a vital role in stimulating American exports, especially from small businesses facing significant challenges raising financing and guarantees needed to compete in the global marketplace. When private sector lenders are unable or unwilling to provide financing, Ex-Im fills in the gap by helping American businesses secure the financing tools they need to be competitive with foreign clients. In doing so, the Bank levels the playing field for American goods and services, and thereby helps American companies create more good-paying jobs here in the United States.

In fiscal year 2014, the total value of exports supported by Ex-Im Bank amounted to almost $27.5 billion. These transactions supported 164,000 U.S. jobs at no cost to taxpayers, and the bank generated approximately $675 million in deficit-reducing receipts transferred to the U.S. Treasury. Of the 3,746 …read more

Source:: News One

Barack Obama’s Brother Sells Letter That Reveals Race Motivated Obama’s Political Career


A revealing handwritten letter from President Barack Obama to his half-brother, Malik Abongo “Roy” Obama has been sold.

According to Page Six, the letter — written in July 1995, before Obama’s political career began, and sold by Malik — details the commander-in-chief’s reason for stepping into the world of politics. Among those reasons is the desire to “deal with some serious issues blacks face here.”

“Some colleagues of mine here have talked me into running for the Illinois State Senate (like being an MP for a province),” Obama wrote. “I have agreed, since I have an interest in politics to deal with some serious ­issues blacks face here.”

Although he is interested in entering the political arena, in the letter, Obama admitted he didn’t like meetings as well as an intent to be a part-time politician.

“Of course, it involves a lot of campaigning, going to meetings and so on, which I don’t find so attractive,” he said. “Anyway, if I win it will only be a part-time post, and I will ­continue my work as a lawyer.”

Prior to a collector buying the letter for an undisclosed amount, it was offered to various parties, including the Los Angeles-based memorabilia dealer Moments in …read more

Source:: Black America Web

NC Prison Worker Had Sex with Convicted Murderer, Aided in Escape

By The Associated Press

LEXINGTON, N.C. (AP) — An inmate who authorities say escaped from a North Carolina lockup with the help of a prison employee has been recaptured, according to a state prisons spokeswoman.

Kristopher McNeil, 29, was in custody in the Davidson County Jail, Department of Public Safety Communications Director Pamela Walker said early Monday morning.

Authorities have said McNeil, who was serving a sentence for second-degree murder, escaped Saturday. A day later, a 33-year-old prison kitchen worker was charged with helping him escape.

Citizens recognized McNeil from media reports and called law enforcement late Sunday, Walker said. He was picked up walking along a road near the Davidson/Forsyth County line in central North Carolina, more than 80 miles north of Polkton, where he’d been incarcerated in the Brown Creek Correctional Institution, according to Walker.

“We appreciate the many law enforcement agencies working closely by the department’s side working to get McNeil back in custody,” Director of Prisons George Solomon said in a statement. “We are especially grateful to the citizens who called in tips and anyone who aided in his capture without anyone getting hurt.”

McNeil, who had been scheduled for release in 2018, will be taken to Central Prison in Raleigh, Walker said. He will …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Detroit Police Chase Causes Deaths Of 2 Children, Critically Injures Others

By NewsOne Staff

Michaelangelo Jackson, 6, and his younger sister, Makiah Jackson, 3, were struck and killed by a vehicle being chased through a residential neighborhood by Detroit police, USA Today reports.

Lorenzo Harris, 29, was allegedly on the run on Wednesday, June 24, due to a parole violation. As he was being chased through Detroit’s East Side, the Chevy Camaro he was driving was allegedly clipped by police, causing it to fly into the air.

A family friend who was on the scene described the horrific incident to the Voice of Detroit:

“I’m the last one they talked to. They looked at me, they were here, I saw their faces. L’il Mama (Makiah) thought I was going to take them to the park, so she came with me to the sidewalk. I told her I promise I’ll take you to the park tomorrow.”

“[The police] were right on their rear, the police car bumped their tail a little bit, and the car flew up in the air,” the friend said. “There was no need for the police to be that close. I yelled ‘WATCH OUT’ but it was too late. When the car hit them, both of them just looked at me. …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Funeral to be Held for Woman Whose Husband Forgave Suspect

By JOHN MORITZ, Associated Press

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — The funeral for the victim whose husband offered forgiveness to the suspect in the deadly shootings at a South Carolina church will be held Monday at the church where the attack took place.

Myra Thompson, 59, was one of nine people gunned down during Bible study at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston on June 17.

During a court appearance last week, Thompson’s widower, Anthony Thompson, told the 21-year-old suspect, Dylann Storm Roof, that his family offered their forgiveness.

“We would like you to take this opportunity to repent,” Anthony Thompson said by video stream. “Do that and you’ll be better off than you are right now.”

All nine of the victims in the shooting were black and police contend the attack was racially motivated.

Thompson’s funeral Monday will follow services for four other victims held at Emanuel AME this weekend that brought political and religious leaders in addition to friends and family.

Those who spoke at the services echoed the similar theme that the lives lost would bring about positive social change.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and the Rev. Jesse Jackson attended the funerals on Saturday and Sunday, delivering similar remarks while adding personal touches for the different victims.

During …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Gay Pride Parades Celebrate Historic Ruling On Gay Marriage


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A parade that at times resembled a rainbow-colored dance party snaked Sunday through downtown San Francisco, the centerpiece of a celebration of a freshly endorsed right to marry even as advocates look ahead to new frontiers in the struggle for equality.

Cheerleaders, dancers and proud families of lesbians and gays swooped up Market Street as spectators flocked 10 to 15 people deep along both sides. There were “Hooray for Gay” and “Love Won” signs. There were rainbow flags and knee socks, umbrellas and tutus.

SF Pride Board President Gary Virginia said the exuberance was amplified given last week’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling that same-sex couples can wed in all 50 states. Still, he said more needs to be done in housing and job discrimination in the United States and for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people around the world.

“Today, we celebrate,” Virginia said. “Tomorrow, we get back to work.”

Hundreds of thousands of people packed gay pride events from Chicago to New York City, Seattle to San Francisco, with overall attendance for events expected in the millions. In New York City, organizers expected about 22,000 people to march while in San Francisco, organizers put the number at 26,000.

New York …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Activist Bree Newsome Takes Down Confederate Flag In South Carolina, Applauded On Social Media [VIDEO]

By The Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The two people arrested for removing the Confederate flag from the front of the South Carolina Statehouse have been released from jail in the state capital.

Officer L. Tucker of the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center said 30-year-old Bree Newsome and 30-year-old James Ian Tyson were released from jail Saturday after posting bond.

Both Newsome and Tyson are from Charlotte.

Newsome was about halfway up the more than 30-foot steel flagpole just after dawn Saturday when officers of the South Carolina Bureau of Protective Services ran to the flagpole and told her to get down. Instead, she continued up the pole and removed the flag.

She and Tyson, who had both climbed over a wrought-iron fence to get to the flag, were arrested.

She and a man who had climbed over a four-foot wrought-iron fence to get to the flag were arrested.

The flag, which is protected by state law, was raised about 45 minutes later, well ahead of a rally later Saturday by supporters of keeping the flag where it is.

Sherri Iacobelli, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Public Safety, said Newsome and James Ian Tyson, 30, also of Charlotte, have been charged with defacing monuments on state Capitol grounds. …read more

Source:: Black America Web