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Former “Cop of the Year” Gets Life For Child Predation

“Blue Lives Matter”? How about children? I imagine this guy got away with a lot of crimes because he was a cop. Police are not immune to any of the foibles of the human condition – including the most evil and dastardly. Which is why there needs to be a fair and open system of accountability.

Michael Harding (l) receiving “Officer of the Year”.

Former Fla. “Officer of the Year” sentenced in child porn case

A former police officer who in 2011 was the “Officer of the Year” in his department was sentenced Monday to life in prison for producing and distributing child pornography, reports CBS Miami.

Michael Harding pleaded guilty in February to three counts of possession and distribution of material involving sexual exploitation of minors, attempting to coerce and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity and production of child pornography.

Harding, who won the “Officer of the Year” award for his work as a Port St. Lucie Police Department officer, posted pictures and videos to a chat room depicting children engaging in sexually explicit acts on multiple occasions in 2015, according to court documents.

On Sept. 22, homeland security agents executed a federal search warrant at Harding’s home and seized his computer, cell phone and a thumb drive. An analysis found they contained hundreds of pictures and videos of children engaged in sex acts with adults.

Harding, 28, also attempted to coerce and entice a minor to engage in sexual activity over the internet. Chat messages stored on his phone show a conversation he had with another person in which both people claimed to have custody of children who they would trade for sexual activity, documents say.

According to court records, Harding used his cellphone to shoot a video depicting his sexual contact with a child under the age of 12. Chat messages also located on the phone corroborated that the image on the phone depicted the abuse of the minor child.

 
 

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The Waco Horror, and Its Aftermath

Lynching in the South was a method not only t maintain white supremacy, but to intimidate and blackmail the local minority populations into staying in line. The result of lynchings in the early 1900’s for a lot of the South was the Great Black Migration, and the loss of a large part of their workforce. One of the most violent lynchings was that of Jesse Washington in Waco Texas.

Around sundown of May 8, 1916, Lucy Fryer, the wife of a well regarded cotton farmer, was found bludgeoned to death in the doorway of her seed house. Jesse Washington, who was illiterate and branded “feeble-minded”, confessed to the murder.

Soon after a jury found him guilty, a crowd of 2,000 men seized Washington, chained him, beat him and dragged him to the town square, where he was burned.

His fingers were amputated for souvenirs and his fingernails taken for keepsakes. Finally all that was left was a charred torso, but Washington’s body parts were put in a bag so they could be dragged through downtown.

About 15,000 people, half of Waco’s population, had gathered to watch the lynching.

 

A mob gathers around to watch the lynching of Jesse Washington.

The “Waco Horror” still reverberates, 100 years later

Mary Pearson doesn’t need to be reminded of Jesse Washington’s lynching.

The Robinson resident grew up hearing the stories from her grandmother, a relative of the 17-year-old farmhand who was tortured to death on Waco’s town square a century ago last Sunday. The moral was never precisely stated, but the horror has stuck with Pearson all her 67 years.

Just after the boy received a death sentence for murdering his white employer, a mob seized him and dragged him to City Hall, where they doused him with coal oil and hanged him over a pile of burning wooden crates. They carved his charred body into souvenirs and dragged it around town.

But even more troubling for Pearson was what didn’t happen: Law enforcement didn’t intervene in the lynching, nor did anyone in a crowd of 15,000 spectators.

“All the folks were standing around, most of them were white, and nobody said anything, nobody stood up to try to do anything,” Pearson said in an interview with the Waco Tribune-Herald after a recent proclamation by Waco’s mayor condemning the lynching. “It’s a hurt and frustration even to think about it. … It can cause me a heavy depression.

“Every time I think about it, I get really angry and I have to ask the Lord to help me.”

White Waco spent most of the 20th century trying to forget the atrocity, dubbed the “Waco Horror” by the national press. The incident stood as a turning point in national anti-lynching efforts and helped bring to prominence the NAACP, the nation’s oldest civil rights organization. But the atrocity received no mention in local history books until the late 1960s and was largely ignored or downplayed locally until 1998, when Councilman Lawrence Johnson publicly called for a memorial to “atone” for the lynching.

Meanwhile, the story survived on the frequency of a whisper in corners of the black community, in the form of legends and admonitions to sons and daughters.

Forgetting became impossible in the mid-2000s, when a series of books, exhibits and news articles brought the incident again to national attention. In 2006, the Waco City Council and McLennan County commissioners passed a general condemnation of the area’s lynching past.

The Community Race Relations Coalition and the NAACP have headed an effort to commemorate the centennial this spring with a lecture series, a march and a push to get a state historical marker for the lynching. The observances culminated with a “town hall” meeting at the Bledsoe-Miller Community Center.

The centennial is not meant to reopen old racial wounds or cast blame on anyone now living, said Peaches Henry, a McLennan Community College assistant English professor and president of the Waco NAACP. Rather, it’s an opportunity to bring whites and blacks together to reflect on a difficult shared history.

“Here’s the importance of history: It allows us to remind ourselves of both the good and the bad, and then to correct our course,” she said.

Henry said the city and county resolution against lynching a decade ago was a good start. The question of Washington’s innocence or guilt aside, Henry said city and county leaders failed to uphold the rule of law and were complicit in a heinous crime of torture.

The recent proclamation by Mayor Malcolm Duncan Jr. went further and specifically referred to the “heinous lynching of Jesse Washington.”

“It’s important to call the names of those who were wronged,” Henry said. “The same was true of the woman (Lucy Fryer) who was murdered. She was someone’s mother, sister and cousin. She was also important. For the council to offer a proclamation naming Jesse Washington is very significant. It means that in the public record he is no longer invisible.”

Those involved in the commemorations say burying the past doesn’t keep it from haunting the present.

Scheherazade Perkins, 64, a member of the race relations board, grew up in Waco and graduated from the black A.J. Moore High School in 1969. She never heard of the lynching until she was an adult, but it helped explain anxieties she heard when she was growing up.

“Obviously there is much that has been done, much progress that has been made,” Perkins said. “But there are processes that still go on, an unspoken terror that still exists, that makes people want to stay under the radar. It makes them hesitant to come forward with concerns for fear that they will be not only labeled but mistreated.

“Some of that lingers, not only with the older people who were right on the fringes of the atrocity, but with those who pass the same sentiment down: ‘Boy, you need to watch your mouth, because you never know.’ ”

The centennial comes at a time of national debate and unrest over police killings of unarmed black males, such as Freddie Gray in Baltimore; Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; and 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland. A Washington Post investigation found that 40 percent of unarmed men shot and killed by police in 2015 were black, even though black men make up only 6 percent of the population.

Henry, the local NAACP president, said she has high regard for Waco police leadership, but she still has anxieties for her own son, an Eagle Scout and college junior, wherever he goes.

“There’s the talk that every young African-American man receives: When you get pulled over, keep your hands on the steering wheel,” she said. “You never make a move without letting the officer know.

“There’s nothing about my son when he is walking or driving down the street that can protect him.”

It’s a more subtle version of the same fear that African-Americans had a century ago, Henry said…Read the Rest Here

 

 
 

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Black Deaths Matter

Police overreach, brutality, and killings are just one part of black American frustration with their Police Departments. The other is the massive ineffectiveness in solving or stopping violent crime.

 

Black Deaths Matter

On the morning of March 11, 2008, shortly after the bus picked up his twin brothers for preschool, Emill Smith stopped by the house of his mother, Valerie Maxwell, in Chester, Pennsylvania. At 22, he was stocky and athletic, with dark eyes, faint facial hair, and a cursive tattoo on his right hand: “R.I.P. James,” in memory of his father, who died in his sleep when Emill was 12. They talked for a while, and he asked if he could pick the twins up from school that afternoon so they could spend time together.

That afternoon, Emill took the four-year-olds to McDonald’s and his place before dropping them off at Valerie’s: “They almost set the apartment on fire,” he joked. “Here, you can have them.” As he walked out, he stopped.

“Mom.”

“Yes?”

“I love you.”

“I love you more.”

At 7:15 p.m. that night, Valerie dialed Emill’s number to make sure he was home in time for his 7:30 curfew, part of his probation for disorderly conduct in a domestic dispute. No answer. A few minutes later, one of Emill’s friends rushed in and collapsed.

Emill had been to a neighborhood bar, where a security camera recorded him dancing, hanging out by the pool table, and kissing an old friend on the forehead before leaving. As he got into his car, someone walked up and shot him several times. No one was ever arrested in connection with the crime, and odds are no one will be. That’s because, while Chester has one of the nation’s highest homicide rates, it has a far lower than average “clearance rate.” Not even one-third of last year’s 30 homicides have been solved, a rate less than half the national average. Since 2005, 144 killings have gone unsolved.

FOR GENERATIONS, BLACK frustration with policing has been best described in a two-part statement: Cops don’t care enough to solve crimes in our neighborhoods—they just come and harass our kids. NovelistWalter Mosley even built a best-selling detective series around a tough private investigator who does all the serving and protecting that cops won’t do on the black side of town.

The bitter irony is that it was this same complaint that helped spawn the aggressive policing tactics now under attack from Ferguson to New York City. In the 1980s, when crack and heroin syndicates swept through black neighborhoods, black parents and pastors were some of the first and loudest voices to demand a war on drugs. What they got was “broken windows” policing—an emphasis on curbing petty offenses to prevent more serious crime.

What they also got were mandatory minimum sentences for shoplifters, indiscriminate stop-and-frisk sweeps, and deadly choke holds on men selling loose cigarettes. There’s little evidence that these tactics contributed much to the national decline in crime. But they did erode trust in law enforcement across many communities—leaving places like Chester increasingly bereft of the protection they badly need. With residents both fearful of police and worried about being targeted for talking to them, detectives can’t find the witnesses they need to solve crimes, breeding further distrust and a vicious cycle of frustration. A 2014 New York Daily News investigation found that in 2013, police solved about 86 percent of homicides in which the victim was white. For black victims, the number was just 45 percent. And in high-minority communities like Chester, says David Kennedy, a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, clearance rates for murder—and even more so for nonfatal shootings—can get “pathetically low. They can easily fall down to single digits.”…Read the Rest Here

 
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Posted by on May 20, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

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Angry Protesters of Police Killing Chase Mayor From City Council Meeting in Texas

People are getting pissed at this shidt. Another example of an off-duty Police Officer shooting an unarmed suspect.

Protesters in a small Texas town outside Dallas who are upset over the police killing of an unarmed Latino teenager took over a City Council meeting and ended up chasing the mayor away in a police car, WFAA reports.

The protests started in Farmers Branch on Tuesday night with just a single girl holding a sign, but protesters then started rolling in via buses. The meeting ended with about 200 people chanting the name of the slain teen, Jose Cruz, and forcing Mayor Bob Phelps to adjourn the meeting.

Farmers Branch police officer Ken Johnson was arrested and charged with murder for shooting and killing Cruz, who was 16, in March. Johnson was off-duty and not in uniform. Cruz was with a friend, Edgar Rodriguez, and Johnson had accused them of breaking into his car outside his home.

Rodriguez, who was injured in the shooting, said Johnson never identified himself.

 
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Posted by on May 18, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

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Police Killed by Murder Drops Again in 2015

Last year, there were 41 Cops intentionally murdered.

Last Year, Cops killed over 1,186 Civilians – over half of which were minorities.

Yet conservatwits would have you believe there “is a war on Cops”.

FBI Confirms 2015 Was One Of The Safest Years Ever For Cops

“Any felonious death of a police officer is a tragedy, but the data show that the police officers’ job is not becoming more deadly.”

Data released by the FBI on Monday shows that 2015 was one of the safest years for U.S. law enforcement in recorded history, following a sustained trend of low numbers of on-duty deaths in recent decades.

The FBI’s preliminary statistics, part of a larger Uniform Crime Reporting release coming in the fall, indicate that 41 police officers were intentionally killed in the U.S. while in the line of duty in 2015. Every officer death is tragic, of course, but this number marks a decrease of nearly 20 percent compared to the 51 law enforcement officers killed in 2014.

Of the officers intentionally killed in the line of duty last year, all but three were shot by a suspect, according to the FBI data. The rest were deliberately struck by a vehicle.

The data contrasts with the claims from some conservative media outlets andpolice union bosses who have continued to peddle the narrative that officers areunder siege. The past two years have seen a surge in police reform activism in the wake of Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Missouri, and other high-profile instances of police killing civilians. But critics of this movement allege that groups like Black Lives Matter promote violence against officers, and have helped wage a “war on cops.”

That misinformation may have contributed to a skewed public perception of the issue. In a 2015 Rasmussen poll, 58 percent of voters said they believed there was a “war on police” in the United States.

But the FBI’s data has repeatedly contradicted these claims…

Widening the historical scope, though, it becomes clearer that policing is most likely not as dangerous now as it used to be. Compare current numbers to the 1970s, when gun-related police deaths were about six times higher than they are today. Or consider the Prohibition era, which saw police deaths involving firearms at rates 14 to 17 times higher than the present day.

 
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Posted by on May 18, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter, Domestic terrorism

 

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Former St Louis Officer Arrested for Murder of Lamar Smith

Why is it this cop wound up in Harris County? Applying for a job as a guard? Harris County jail has a bit of a reputation for prisoners dying in custody, both from “natural”, and decidedly un-natural causes.

Shooting and crash in north St. Louis

Former St. Louis cop arrested, charged with first-degree murder for 2011 police shooting

A former St. Louis police officer has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder for the on-duty shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith — an incident that led to one of the largest wrongful-death settlements stemming from a police shooting in the city’s history, the Post-Dispatch has learned.

Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce’s office on Monday charged Jason Stockley, 35, of Houston. St. Louis police and U.S. marshals arrested Stockley on Monday at his home in the 6300 block of Chevy Chase Drive in Houston.

St. Louis Circuit Judge Michael Mullen ordered Stockley held without bail. He is in custody in Harris County, Texas.

“I’m disappointed because I know what fine public servants the vast majority of police officers are, and this kind of conduct on the part of this former officer doesn’t reflect the excellent work I see from them every day,” Joyce said. “So it’s disappointing in that regard, but it’s important that people understand that if you commit a crime, and we have the evidence to prove it, it doesn’t matter to us what you do for a living. Our job is to hold people accountable if we have the evidence. And in this case, we do.”

Dotson said Joyce’s decision to charge Stockley was the “culmination of years of investigative work,” in a prepared statement he issued Tuesday.

“The department spent countless hours on this case, all in an effort to ascertain the true facts of what occurred on December 20, 2011,” he said. “I hold my officers to the highest standards. Stockley’s actions were in no way representative of the dedicated service of the men and women who serve on this department.”

Stockley shot Smith, 24, in December 2011 after a suspected drug transaction and high-speed chase. State and federal prosecutors had filed no charges.

After shooting at Smith’s car, Stockley and his partner, Officer Brian Bianchi, chased the victim at speeds over 80 mph. While in pursuit, the police SUV crashed, backed up and continued following Smith’s vehicle.

During the chase, Stockley says, “going to kill this (expletive deleted), don’t you know it,” according to court documents filed Monday. As Smith’s car was slowing to a stop, Stockley tells Bianchi to “hit him right now,” at which point the driver slams the police SUV into Smith’s car. Court documents did not disclose the source of the quotes.

Stockley then approached Smith’s car on the driver’s side and shot five times into the car, striking Smith with each shot. A gun was recovered from the victim’s car, but lab analysis revealed the presence of only Stockley’s DNA, according to the documents….More Here

 

 
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Posted by on May 17, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

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Dartmouth BLM Reacts to Racist Republican “Blue Lives Matter”

Things between the College Republicans and College BLM are heating up…

The Dartmouth pro-police display, after it was torn down and replaced with Black Lives Matter material. (Courtesy of Dartmouth student, DCF)

The article name here is a misnomer. The so called “Memorial” had nothing to do with honoring fallen Police Officers… And a lot to do with Republican racism.

Dartmouth Black Lives Matter protesters tear down memorial to slain police

A controversy has erupted at Dartmouth College after a pro-police display was torn down by Black Lives Matter activists, who denounced it for memorializing the “perpetrators” of “state violence.”

In honor of National Police Week (which falls May 15-21), Dartmouth’s College Republicans reserved a bulletin board at the Collis Center and used it to create a display honoring police officers and firemen who have fallen in the line of duty. One part of the display noted that 60 police and 343 firemen were killed in the 9/11 attacks, while another declared over 20,000 police officers have been killed while on-duty in the history of the United States.

 At the bottom, the display said in big letters, “BLUE LIVES MATTER.”

This last part of the display appears to have outraged Black Lives Matter supporters at Dartmouth, several of whom vocally complained on Twitter and Facebook that the display was offensive and even “white supremacist.”

But Black Lives Matter did more than just complain, they also took action. The original display was torn down Friday morning, at about 11 a.m, and in its place almost three dozen sheets of paper were used to cover the bulletin board, all of them carrying an identical message: “YOU CANNOT CO-OPT THE MOVEMENT AGAINST STATE VIOLENCE TO MEMORIALIZE THE PERPETRATORS.” At the bottom, each sheet also had the hashtag “#blacklivesmatter” printed on it.

The Black Lives Matter activists declared that the original display had been “censored on behalf of the students,” according to an eyewitness who spoke with The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Dartmouth’s College Republicans quickly released a statement via Facebook denouncing the stunt.

“As an organization, we took the time and effort to obtain proper approval for the display while putting significant thought into its content,” the statement says. “We are dismayed that a group of students would attempt to censor our message while coopting the space for their own purposes.”

Mikala Williams, one of the students involved in tearing down the original display, told The Dartmouth that her action was justified because the original display promoted violence against black people.

“It was taken down by students and replaced because it actively co-opted a movement that is supposed to comment on police brutality against black individuals in this country,” she said. “It took that and by framing that as ‘Blue Lives Matter,’ it normalizes and naturalizes violence against people of color in this country. And that is not okay.”

 

 
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Posted by on May 15, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

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