Monthly Archives: January 2017

Man Convicted Of Killing 2 At Texas Sandwich Shop Executed

By MICHAEL GRACZYK, Associated Press


HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A man convicted of a fatal robbery at a Dallas-area Subway shop just weeks after he was fired from his job there was executed Thursday night.

Terry Edwards, 43, received lethal injection for the $3,000 holdup at a Subway restaurant where two employees were shot to death in 2002.

Asked by a warden if he had a final statement, Edwards replied: “I’m at peace with God. I hope y’all find peace in this.” As the lethal dose of pentobarbital was administered, he began snoring quickly. Within about 30 seconds, all movement stopped.

He was pronounced dead at 10:17 p.m. CST, 23 minutes after the sedative began flowing into his arms. Edwards never looked at five relatives of the two murder victims who stood a few feet from him, looking through a window.

Edwards’ execution, the second this year in Texas and the third nationally, was delayed about four hours until the U.S. Supreme Court rejected multiple last-day appeals that sought to halt his punishment.

Lawyers for Edwards wanted to reopen his case to investigate claims that a court-appointed lawyer earlier in the appeals process provided deficient help by abandoning him. Attorneys also contended Dallas County prosecutors at his trial incorrectly portrayed …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Attorneys Release Bodycam Footage Of Fort Worth Arrest

By CLAUDIA LAUER, Associated Press


DALLAS (AP) — Bodycam footage from a white Fort Worth police officer who was suspended for wrestling a black woman and her daughter to the ground appears to show the officer using his foot to push the 15-year-old girl into a police car.

The footage was provided to The Associated Press on Thursday from attorneys representing Jacqueline Craig, who had called police last month to report that a neighbor choked her 7-year-old son for allegedly littering in his yard. One of her daughters videoed the interactions between Craig and Officer William Martin, and posted it online. The neighbor was not charged in the incident.

The Fort Worth Police Department has denied media requests to release Martin’s bodycam footage, and a department spokesman didn’t immediately return a message seeking comment Thursday morning. But the audio of the bodycam video, reviewed by The Associated Press, matches the audio of the Facebook video posted by Craig’s family.

Craig and two of her daughters, 19-year-old Brea Hymond and 15-year-old Jacques Craig, were arrested. The daughters were charged with resisting arrest and interfering with public duties. Craig was charged with resisting arrest, failure to identify herself as a fugitive and three outstanding traffic warrants out of Irving, Texas.

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Source:: Black America Web

Florida Woman Accused Of Throwing Tampon At Police Officer



ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — A Florida woman has been charged after police say she hit an officer with a tampon.

Local news outlets report that 28-year-old Tacora Fields was arrested and charged with aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer.

A police report says Fields was involved in a fight when a St. Petersburg police officer responded.

Police say Fields threatened to hit the officer with her tampon. Authorities say Fields then removed the feminine hygiene product and threw it at the officer, hitting him in the shoulder.

Police say Fields tried to flee the scene, but the officer used a stun gun on her and she was taken into custody. It’s unclear if she has an attorney.

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Source:: Black America Web

School District Considers Removing Racial Slur From Musical

By Associated Press

Stack of school books and apple on desk in empty classroom

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CHERRY HILL, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey high school is weighing whether it should allow students to utter racial slurs during performances of the musical “Ragtime.”

Cherry Hill school district officials had planned to remove the N-word from the show that’s due to debut March 10 at High School East.

But that has been met with resistance by many students and community members of all races who say it would be wrong to “sanitize” the show. They argue it’s an accurate portrayal of the racist attitudes that many people held in the early 20th century, when the Tony Award-winning musical is set.

The issue was the focus of a lengthy public meeting Tuesday attended by about 100 people.

No decision has been made on how to proceed.

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Source:: Black America Web

No Charges In LAPD Shooting Of Mentally Ill Man

By MICHAEL BALSAMO, Associated Press

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two Los Angeles police officers acted in self-defense and will not face criminal charges after fatally shooting a mentally ill black man during a struggle over an officer’s gun in 2014, prosecutors said Tuesday.

The finding from the Los Angeles district attorney’s office comes more than a year after a police oversight board found the officers had no legal reason to stop 25-year-old Ezell Ford, violating department policy.

But prosecutors said Los Angeles Police Department officers Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas were in fear for their lives and acted lawfully when they shot Ford on Aug. 11, 2014 as Ford struggled with Wampler over the officer’s holstered gun. The shooting happened days after that of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and led to a series of Black Lives Matter protests in Los Angeles.

“The question is did they honestly believe that Mr. Ford was about to take out the gun and shoot them and there is a lot of facts that indicate that they did,” District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in an interview Tuesday.

Authorities said the officers had approached Ford, whose family has said he struggled with an array of mental illnesses, after seeing him in a …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Black Waitress Gets Inspiring Note From Trump Supporters

By Clarissa Hamlin

An African-American waitress received a $450 tip and an inspiring note from three White customers in Washington, D.C., reports The Washington Post.

From The Washington Post:

When the men finished their meals they left Rosalynd Harris, a 25-year-old African-American woman, a personal message on the receipt that noted their differences. They also left her a $450 tip on their $72.60 bill — a 625 percent tip.

“We may come from different cultures and may disagree on certain issues, but if everyone would share their smile and kindness like your beautiful smile, our country will come together as one people,” the note reads. “Not race. Not gender. Just American.” Then he added, “God Bless!”

The men were gone before Harris saw the receipt. She saw the words before she saw the tip, and the words alone were enough to overwhelm her. “You automatically assume if someone supports Trump that they have ideas about you,” she said, “but [the customer is] more embracing than even some of my more liberal friends, and there was a real authenticity in our exchange.”

Harris received the positive note during Inauguration weekend, which included a Peace Ball with Black celebrities rallying together for hope, reports <a class="colorbox" …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Flint Water Has Fallen Below Federal Lead Limit

By DAVID EGGERT, Associated Press


LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan environmental officials say Flint’s water system no longer has levels of lead exceeding the federal limit.

The finding by the Department of Environmental Quality is good news for a city whose 100,000 residents have grappled with the man-made water crisis since 2014.

Officials told The Associated Press ahead of an official announcement Tuesday that the 90th percentile of lead concentrations in Flint was 12 parts per billion from July through December — below the “action level” of 15 ppb. It was 20 ppb in the prior six-month period.

State officials say Flint’s lead levels are now comparable to other U.S. cities, but that residents must still use filters because the ongoing replacement of pipes could spike lead levels in some homes.

Flint’s emergency began when officials failed to properly treat lead lines for corrosion.

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Source:: Black America Web

Jerome Easter Jr.’s Case Highlights Challenges Of Finding Missing With Mental Illness

By Jeff Mays

Although African-Americans make up just 13 percent of the U.S. population, we account for 33 percent of the missing in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s database. Cases involving African-Americans also tend to receive less media coverage than missing Whites, with missing men of color getting even less attention.

NewsOne has partnered with the Black and Missing Foundation to focus on the crisis of missing African-Americans.

To be a part of the solution, NewsOne will profile missing persons and provide tips about how to keep your loved ones safe and what to do if someone goes missing.

Jerome Easter Jr.

Case Type: Endangered
Date of Birth: March 5, 1995
Missing Date: Jan. 2, 2017
Age Now: 21
Missing City: Milwaukee
Missing State: Wisconsin
Gender: Male
Race: Black
Complexion: Medium
Height: 5-11
Weight: 175
Hair Color: Black
Hair Length: Short
Eye Color: Brown
Wear Glasses or Contacts: No

Location Last Seen: Easter was arrested in Wyoming on Friday for allegedly being in a stolen vehicle, according to his family. But this Black and Missing focuses on the difficulties families can face when dealing with a loved one with mental illness who goes missing.

Circumstances of Disappearance: Easter’s mother, Kiaundra Murphy, 36, a supervisor at a large retail chain in Fresno, California, said mental illness, especially schizophrenia, runs …read more

Source:: News One

2 Convicted In Shooting That Paralyzed “Hoop Dreams” Player



CHICAGO (AP) — Two men have been convicted of attempted murder and aggravated battery for a shooting that paralyzed a Chicago high school basketball coach who played on one of the teams featured in the 1994 documentary “Hoop Dreams.”

Shawn Harrington was shot twice while shielding his daughter after gunmen opened fire on their car at a traffic stop in the city’s Humboldt Park neighborhood in 2014. Authorities say the attackers mistook the car for another that had been involved in an earlier shooting.

A spokeswoman for prosecutors, Tandra Simonton, says a jury on Friday convicted Cedryk Davis and Deandre Thompson in the attack, which left Harrington paralyzed from the waist down. Their sentencing is set for Feb. 28.

Harrington is an assistant basketball coach at Marshall. He played for the team when “Hoop Dreams” was being filmed.

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Source:: Black America Web