Wichita, KS — A deputy has been suspended after he was captured on video, in a sickening display of authoritarianism. Deputy Vance Williams is now apologizing to the community after this video was posted to YouTube.
According to KSN news, the deputy was called out to the town of Harper to investigate a dispute over property, between several people.
Jeff Jacobs, who recorded the video, simply tried to ask Williams a question, when Williams completely blew a fuse. Upon being asked a question the deputy begins a full on assault.
“I don’t need anything from you. This is not my f**king jurisdiction. You understand that,” said Williams.
Jacobs responds, “No, I don’t. I don’t have a clue. I don’t know what is going on.”
At this point, the public servant begins flexing his “authoritie” and demands Jacobs give him his ID. He then tells him to take off his sunglasses, his hat, and demands he sit down.
“Say something else to me, and we will see where this goes. Open your f**king mouth and say something else. This is not my, take your f**king sunglasses off now. Hat off. Give me your identification,” said Williams.
“You want to spend your night in the f**king poke (jail) because you can’t shut your f**king mouth. Walk! Enjoy your walk,” barks this tyrant cop.
Both Jacobs and Williams say that this video does not show the entire picture, however, Williams admits that Jacobs never antagonized him.
“All I did was ask him a simple question. I expected an answer, or a ‘hey man, it’s really none of your business,’” said Jacobs.
The department is standing by their officer in regards to his mistreatment of Jacobs, but they are upset about Williams’ choice of words.
“I believe the whole story wasn’t aired for everybody to see,” said Sheriff Tracy Chance. “As far as the language goes, yeah I don’t agree with it and I’ve dealt with that.”
Williams also issued the following canned apology for his actions.
“I unfortunately used language that I should never have used,” said Deputy Williams. “I apologize to our community, to our county, commissioners, and to our sheriff. He would never condone that behavior.”
Had this incident not been captured on video, you can rest assured that the apology and the suspension, would have never existed. This is why people are not happy with police in America today.
WASHINGTON — The US armed forces are using a growing number of mercenaries or contractors to operate lethal drone attacks as regular troops are increasingly unwilling to do so, experts told Sputnik.
“‘Private contractors’, mercenaries, have been involved in US drone surveillance and attack for some time, certainly with the CIA, and most probably not only in intelligence analysis, but also in the roles of pilots and sensor operators,” KnowDrones.com Coordinator Nick Mottern told Sputnik on Friday.
The sensor operators are the people who pull the trigger to launch Hellfire missiles and bombs, he said.
Mottern noted the need to hire mercenaries indicates that the US military is not able, for whatever reason, to find enough people within its ranks to do such work.
“This is… because it is involving an increasing amount of killing, and, I suspect, an increasing amount of PTSD [Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder].”
The situation, Mottern continued, presents a major legal problem for the contracting companies and the military alike, because of the question who should be held accountable for the killing going on conducted by drones.
“[T]he critical decisions of identifying ‘the enemy’ are being made by civilians who are under no official chain of command,” he added.
All drone killing remains clearly in violation of international law and US domestic law against assassination, Mottern pointed out.
Yet, “here we have the US paying civilians to do illegal killing without even the legal accountability applied to the US military,” he said. “[T]he mercenaries are accountable only to their employers who most assuredly are encouraging high kill totals to ensure continued contracts. “
This lack of accountability and of any clear chain of command “obviously means dramatically increased jeopardy for the people under surveillance and drone attack; that is a dramatic increase in the number of people being killed and terrorized,” Mottern explained.
The unwillingness of the US military to comment on this situation is evidence of its illegality, the activist argued.
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism (BIJ), Mottern said, has documented up to nearly 6,000 people killed by US drone attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, not including those killed in Afghanistan before 2015, or those killed by drone attacks in Iraq, Libya or possibly Syria.
“The extent of drone surveillance, killing and terrorism going on is very likely far beyond what is documented by [the BIJ figures],” Mottern warned.
Upstate Drone Acton activist Ed Kinane told Sputnik on Friday that the scale of drone operations and the amount of carnage they will inflict looks likely to increase in coming months.
“The problem isn’t ‘lack of personnel’; the problem is an overabundance of opportunities for surveillance and killing — thanks to the US military’s drive for assassination, intervention and invasion,” Kinane said.
The continued and increasing cycles of war generate further profit for major defense contractors in the United States and its close allies, Kinane claimed.
“More war equals more profit, [therefore] perpetual war equals perpetual profit [and] more regional instability equals more opportunities to secure control over resources of fractured nations,” Kinane argued.
The intelligence analysts now employed by the Pentagon will likely eventually be involved in domestic police and intelligence work as well, Kinane predicted.
“Recognizing that, in all countries in the world, there are children living in exceptionally difficult conditions, and that such children need special consideration…” – from the Preamble of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
In the past two weeks, CPT has witnessed a significant increase in the targeting of Palestinian children by Israeli occupying forces. From soldiers confiscating their bicycles to chasing them down in the street, the Israeli occupying forces are stripping children of their fundamental right to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities.
These are the stories that CPT has documented in Hebron’s Old City, but many more stories of boys and girls remain invisible.
Sunday 19 July – A six-year-old boy was swarmed by the heavily armed Israeli military, forced to empty his pockets, and aggressively interrogated.
Monday 20 July – Israeli soldiers detained and allegedly assaulted 14-year-old Anan, then took him to the police station. The Israeli military then continued to raid the streets of Hebron, detaining young people outside an Internet cafe at 9:30 pm.
Thursday 23 July – Israeli soldiers invaded a Palestinian house in the Old City of Hebron while chasing a Palestinian boy. The soldiers claimed that the boy ran away from them, which made him “suspicious”.
Friday 24 July – Four boys were playing in the street when six Israeli soldiers began charging towards them and yelling. The boys ran home, and the Israeli soldiers followed them into their house. After five minutes of questioning the boys, the soldiers left.
Saturday 25 July – Wasim, 10 years old, was riding his bike with his friends behind a patrol of soldiers. The soldiers told him to go ahead and pass them on his bike, but then blocked CPTers from following. Wasim told CPT that the soldiers slapped his face as they took him towards the gate. Palestinians in the community and CPTers advocated for the release of the boy, but the Israeli soldiers pushed back and took him. Another witness saw the soldiers kicking Wasim as they took him away. They released him ten minutes later.
Tuesday 28 July – Israeli Border Police stopped a Palestinian child who was trying to pass through the military turnstile near the Ibrahimi Mosque. The Border Police opened the gate for him, helped him move his bike, and then looked him in the eye and said, “I confiscated your bike, now leave.” The Border Police then told the child, “You know only walking is allowed here. Next time you will bring a car trying to pass.” After five minutes, another Border Police officer gave the child his bike back and asked him to leave.
The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) also reported that a teenage boy was stopped and detained by a group of Israeli soldiers near the Souq in Hebron’s Old City. The reason for his detention was that he had a small box of children’s “pop pop fireworks.” Soldiers detained the boy for thirty minutes and then released him.
Wednesday 30 July – Moath, 16-years-old, was picked off the streets in Hebron by Israeli soldiers who body searched him, zip-tied his hands behind his back, and blindfolded him. CPT asked about the nature of his detention, but received no reason. Soldiers took Moath into custody for identification and released after an hour. Watch the video here.
“States Parties recognize the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities…. States Parties shall ensure that no child be subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.” – from Articles 31 and 37 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
It is not only the fact that the Israeli military oppresses children and violates their human rights that is the outrage, but that it does so with impunity. These incidents did not happen in a corner or a dark alleyway, but in public spaces. CPT is sometimes able to advocate for the rights of children, but despite the presence of human rights observers, there is still a lack of accountability for Israeli occupying forces. It is up to all of us to share these stories, and shift the prevailing narrative towards one of truth and justice.
A federal judge has rejected a legal challenge from a Guantanamo Bay inmate who said his continued imprisonment was unlawful since President Barack Obama had declared an end to the war in Afghanistan. The detainee has been held for 13 years.
The challenge brought by lawyers for detainee Muktar Yahya Najee al-Warafi said the Obama administration’s statement that the war in Afghanistan had come to an end made their client’s detention unlawful under the Authorization for the Use of Military Force of 2001. The authorization provides legal justification for imprisoning foreign fighters captured overseas.
The plaintiff’s argument also pointed to President Obama’s January 2015 speech declaring that “our combat mission in Afghanistan is over.”
The Washington, DC federal judge, Royce Lambert, wrote in his 14-page opinion that the president’s statement notwithstanding, the government had offered “convincing evidence the US involvement in the fighting in Afghanistan, against Al-Qaeda and Taliban forces alike, has not stopped,” and that al-Warafi’s detention remains legal.
“A court cannot look to political speeches alone to determine factual and legal realities merely because doing so would be easier than looking at all the relevant evidence,” Lambeth wrote, according to a report by the Associated Press. “The government may not always mean what it says or say what it means.”
Brain Foster, a lawyer for al-Warafi, said the judge’s opinion amounted to “a rubber stamp for endless detention” and would review the opinion to decide whether to appeal.
Foster also took to Twitter to say al-Warafi had worked in medical clinics in Afghanistan, a position that would provide him with protection under The Geneva Conventions.
Al-Warafi, a Yemeni, was captured in Afghanistan by the Northern Alliance in 2001 before being detained by the US at Guantanamo in 2002.
More than 700 inmates have been held at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, at a cost of more than $5 billion, since it opened in 2002 in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. The facility has been mired in scandal throughout its history, with allegations of torture, force feeding and sexual abuse.
There are still 116 detainees at the prison. Speaking at national security conference in Aspen, Colorado on July 24, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said it “doesn’t make fiscal sense” to keep Guantanamo open.
Johnson said that it costs nearly $900,000 per year to house each prisoner at Guantanamo, amounting to a total cost of more than $100 million per year. In comparison, he said the cost of housing an inmate in a high-security federal prison was $80,000.
Like a stopped clock, even rabid neoconservatives can be right once in a while. A good case in point is a recent open letter to Secretary of State John Kerry, signed by such neocon luminaries as Robert Kagan, Elliott Abrams, Reuel Gerecht and Ellen Bork, calling on the Obama administration to “press the Government of Egypt to end its campaign of indiscriminate repression in order to advance a more effective strategy for countering violent extremism.”
The Obama administration, which helped blow up Libya and Syria in the name of human rights, has resumed arms shipments to the military regime of Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, which seized power from a democratically elected government in 2013. Washington’s double standard not only undercuts U.S. credibility internationally, it also jeopardizes important security interests in the region.
As the letter from the “Bipartisan Working Group on Egypt” rightly warns, “State violence — several thousand killed during street demonstrations, tens of thousands of political prisoners, hundreds of documented cases of torture or forced disappearance, sexual assault of detainees or family members, reported collective punishment of Sinai communities possibly with weapons provided through U.S. military aid — is creating more incentives for Egyptians to join militant groups.”
The letter adds, “By carrying out a campaign of repression and human rights abuses that is unprecedented in the country’s modern history, and by closing off all avenues of peaceful expression of dissent through politics, civil society, or media, Al-Sisi is stoking the very fires he says he wants to extinguish.”
Just three days before the group sent its letter to Kerry, Human Rights Watch reported that Egyptian security forces, operating with “nearly absolute impunity,” have killed hundreds of dissidents in recent months, detained more than 40,000 suspects, and “forcibly disappeared” dozens of people. University students in particular have been targeted for mystery disappearances and killings.
The government has also jailed some 18 journalists for publishing reports that conflict with government-approved messages. Its massacre of roughly 1,000 protesters in Cairo in August 2013 ranks as one of the worst single-day atrocities in the region.
Government repression is growing more, not less, severe with time. President al-Sisi recently issued an executive decree giving himself the power to fire officials at independent state institutions. The government is also fast-tracking legislation to further crack down on press freedoms, including, for example, heavy fines for contradicting official statements on terrorist attacks. Human rights organizations have termed it “a blatant violation of the constitution.” The executive director of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information said the proposed law “turns journalists into mere conveyors of the state’s official data.”
Yet the tepid response of Kerry’s State Department is to endorse Egypt’s “fight against terrorism,” while expressing the “hope” that the final version of Egypt’s new counterterrorism law will respect “individual rights.” The New York Times rightly called the statement “laughable.”
It is, however, fully in keeping with the Obama administration’s “see-no-evil” policy toward Egypt of late. During a visit to Cairo last year, Kerry praised al-Sisi for expressing “‘a very strong sense of his commitment to human rights.” Then, in December, the United States delivered 10 Apache helicopters to support Egypt’s counterterrorism efforts. Finally, this March, the Obama administration lifted its partial freeze on military aid to Egypt, enacted in October 2013 to encourage movement toward free and fair elections in the country.
When Egypt started buying arms from France and negotiating with Russia, the administration suddenly decided that resuming its full $1.3 billion in annual military aid was “in U.S. national security interests.” That finding came despite the administration’s admission this June that “the overall trajectory for rights and democracy has been negative,” including “arbitrary and unlawful killings” and repressive new laws and executive initiatives that “undermine prospects for democratic governance.”
One factor in the administration’s calculus is its concern over rising numbers of Islamist terrorist attacks within Egypt. They include numerous guerrilla operations by the Egyptian affiliate of the Islamic State (Wilayat Sinai) and, more worrisome, the devastating car bombing of the Italian consulate in downtown Cairo this month. A campaign of urban terrorism could devastate the country’s economy and turn Egypt into a much greater crisis than Syria.
But as numerous human rights activists warn, Egyptian repression has become the most effective recruiting tool for anti-government extremists. The Muslim Brotherhood’s longstanding doctrine of peaceful political change has lost credibility with young activists, who refuse to submit passively to arrest and torture at the hands of state security forces.
Reflecting pressure from within its ranks, the powerful Islamic movement declared in late January, “We are at the beginning of a new phase where we summon our strength and evoke the meaning of jihad. . . [We] prepare ourselves, our wives, our sons and daughters, and whoever follows our path for relentless jihad where we ask for martyrdom.”
As one student of Egypt’s Islamists notes, “the matter has yet to be settled. Given the Brotherhood’s long history of non-violence, many members don’t find it easy to accept it now even in response to the Sisi regime’s clampdown. But the fear of losing ground is occupying the minds of Brotherhood leaders. The way many Brotherhood leaders are framing this is that if there is a war between society and the state, and if the society has taken a stance, the Muslim Brotherhood should not hinder society’s fight for freedom.”
Last year, Robert Kagan became one of the first neoconservatives to break with conservatives in Congress, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the Netanyahu regime to warn about prospects for “a new Egyptian jihadist movement brought into existence by the military’s crackdown.”
“To Israel, which has never supported democracy anywhere in the Middle East except Israel, the presence of a brutal military dictatorship bent on the extermination of Islamism is not only tolerable but desirable,” Kagan wrote. But “In Egypt, U.S. interests and Israel’s perceptions of its own interests sharply diverge. If one believes that any hope for moderation in the Arab world requires finding moderate voices not only among secularists but also among Islamists, America’s current strategy in Egypt is producing the opposite result.”
Kagan’s pithy observations remain as true today as they were then. The advice that he and others in the Working Group on Egypt sent to Kerry last week—urging him to stop whitewashing Egypt’s regime and instead to pressure it to meet international human rights commitments and promote national reconciliation —is not simply humane but the wisest possible strategic counsel.
The Ohio police officer accused of killing an unarmed black man during a traffic stop has been indicted by a grand jury and charged with murder, the county prosecutor said. A warrant has been issued for the arrest University of Cincinnati Police Officer Ray Tensing.
Tensing, who is a white member of the University of Cincinnati Police Department (UCPD), pulled over Samuel Dubose, a 43-year-old African-American man, on Sunday night because the officer said the driver was missing the front license plate on his car. After a brief struggle between the two men, Dubose’s car rolled forward, knocking Tensing to the ground. Tensing then shot Dubose in the head.
“I have been doing this for 30 years, and this is the most asinine act by a police officer I have ever seen,” Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said during a press conference announcing the murder charge against Tensing. “This is without question a murder.”
Deters said that his office has reviewed hundreds of police shootings, and that Tensing “should never have been a police officer.”
“It is our belief that he was not dragged. If you slow down this tape you see what happens, it is a very slow period of time from when the car starts rolling to when a gun is out and he’s shot in the head,” Deters said.
“[Dubose] was simply, slowly rolling away,” he added.
The prosecutor said that the reason for the traffic stop was “a pretty chicken crap stop,” and that Tensing “purposely killed” Dubose.
“He wasn’t dealing with someone who was wanted for murder. He was dealing for someone who was wanted for not having a front license plate,” Deter said.
“I’m treating him like a murderer,” he added.
The dozen members of the grand jury also indicted Tensing on a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter. If he is convicted of murder, he faces 15 years to life in prison.
Police officers are out to arrest Tensing, who is expected to be booked later Wednesday.
Deters initially held back the body camera footage to show the video to Dubose’s family first, but released the footage during the press conference.
“I do think that body cameras should be mandatory for law enforcement,” family attorney Mark O’Mara said.
An attorney for Dubose’s family told reporters that there would not have been an indictment without the video.
Tensing’s lawyer, Stuart Matthews, told the Cincinnati Enquirer on Tuesday that his client was in fear for his life before shooting Dubose and that he thought he would be run over by the car. Tensing has been a police officer for just over four years, and joined the UCPD in April 2014.
“He’s not doing well. He feels terrible about it. He didn’t become a police officer to go out and shoot anyone,” Mathews told WCPO earlier.
Dubose had a lengthy criminal record, including over 75 traffic and drug charges in Hamilton County, the Guardian reported. However, his family said he was not a violent man, but rather the father of 13 children who was engaged to be married.
“He got stopped a lot, but he never tried to fight,” Audrey Dubose, his mother, told the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Turkey has arrested more than 1,000 people across the country in “anti-terrorist” operations launched after a recent deadly bombing in the border town of Suruc.
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s Office of Public Diplomacy said in a Monday statement that 1,050 people had been arrested during the operations in 34 provinces, adding that most of the detainees have been accused of being members of ISIL, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) or the Marxist Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C).
The country has launched a far-and-wide arrest campaign since at least 32 people were killed in a massive explosion in the Turkish town of Suruc, near the southern border with Syria, on July 20. The attack was attributed to the Takfiri ISIL terrorist group, which has swathes of territory in neighboring Syria and Iraq under its control.
Ever since the blast in Suruc, the country has also started conducting aerial attacks against PKK bases in northern Iraq as well as what it claims to be ISIL positions in Syria.
Turkey has been the scene of several protests since the bomb attack in Suruc, with police forces using water cannon, rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse crowds. Demonstrators condemn Turkish military campaigns in Iraq and Syria.
The Turkish government is believed to be one of the main supporters of the terrorist groups fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad since 2011, with reports showing that Ankara actively trains and arms the militants operating in Syria, and also facilitates the safe passage of would-be foreign terrorists into crisis-hit areas.
In a report published last Sunday, The Guardian quoted an unnamed senior Western official as saying that evidence on direct dealings between Turkish officials and ranking ISIL members was “undeniable.”
New York City police say they held a young man down and beat him in a Target store because he “refused to identify himself” Saturday evening in an incident caught on video.
The beating could have been much worse if it was not for the growing crowd of witnesses either recording or yelling at the cops to stop beating him.
In fact, more cops came out of nowhere to control the restless crowd, which appeared ready to start pulling officers off the man they were beating.
The young man, whose name has not been released, was charged resisting arrest, obstruction of governmental administration, trespassing and disorderly conduct, according to Patch, who reached out to the NYPD for comment.
However, those are typical contempt-of-cop charges police use when they can’t determine if an actual crime was committed. Like shoplifting, for example, which is what a person would normally be arrested for inside a retail store. Or at least outside it once they walk out with the merchandise.
Nevertheless, those are all misdemeanor charges that generally don’t require a beat down.
Patch also reached out to Target who said their employees were the ones who called police:
And Target’s press office says in a statement that Target employees were the ones to call police: “At Target, we take the safety and security of our guests, team members and property very seriously. Following concerning behavior by one of our guests, the team contacted law enforcement.”
The video, recorded by a man named Michael Rolland, lasts almost 15 minutes, but it’s within the first minute that shows the beating. It currently has just more than 2,000 views but it is quickly going viral.
Rolland posted the following on Facebook:
The response was totally disproportionate and put his life at risk. From what I can tell they were beating him on the back because he refused to let go of the Bible (or other large gilded book) he was holding onto.
The book is ripped out of the man’s hands around the :49 mark in the video and tossed aside and nobody else seems to pay it any mind.
The incident took place in Flatbush, Brooklyn and involved officers from NYPD’s 70th Precinct. Police told Patch that the incident is “under internal review.”
Police brutality in the United States is directly linked to the training some American officers receive in Israel, says a political commentator in Kentucky.
John Miranda made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Tuesday when asked about the death of an African American woman while in police custody.
Sandra Bland was found dead in a prison cell at the Waller County jail in Texas on July 13.
Miranda pointed to the circumstances surrounding Bland’s arrest on July 10 by a Texas state trooper for failing to signal while changing lanes with her vehicle.
“That these people are being taken out of their cars is 100 percent illegal. The only reason a person should be taken out of their car is if the officer thinks some other crime or something illegal has happened, but obviously as we can all see from dashboard camera from Sandra Bland that this is not what happened,” he said.
Police said that an autopsy has confirmed an initial finding by a medical examiner that Bland’s death was a suicide.
However, Miranda said “the story that police gave to the press conference just does not add up.”
“As for the increase in police brutality within the United States,” Miranda said, “I think this definitely can be pointed towards the Israeli training that the Department of Homeland Security is giving all of American police officers.”
“This is not a myth, this is actually happening. I know this first-hand from friends of mine that are police officers,” he continued.
“Some police officers are actually being flown to Israel for the training, not all of them but some, and then those that are flown to Israel, they come back home and they train the head officers in the training that they’ve gotten in Israel,” he explained.
“All these incidents, it is not just happening to African Americans,” Miranda said. “Police are literally being brutal with all Americans.”
The deaths of Bland, as well as two others – Rexdale W. Henry and Kindra Chapman – who were both found dead in their prison cells a few days after they were arrested, are the latest in a series of suspicious police-involved incidents that have sparked protests in many cities across the US.
Listen to full interview: http://presstv.ir/Default/embed/422190
A black woman has been found dead in her prison cell near Cleveland, Ohio, police said, adding that the autopsy “revealed no suspicious injuries.” Her family, however, claims she was “perfectly fine” a day before she died.
The sister of Ralkina Jones, 37, told the Cleveland.com news website that she talked to her sister on the eve of her death.
“She was perfectly fine. She didn’t complain of nothing, saying she was hurting or anything,” Renee Ashford said.
“[My sister] would want us to find out why. You can’t just tell me one minute I seen my sister, then the next day she dead. That don’t even make sense. And it’s just, ‘I can’t help you. I can’t tell you.’ Like, no. That’s un-human.”
The oldest of seven children, Jones had an 11-year-old daughter. “She was a go-getter… She was the person who held us together,” Ashford said.
Police have released a report where they explained the details about Jones’s death and her arrest. They said that the victim’s body was found in Cleveland Heights Jail Facility “during a routine jail check of prisoners.”
“Squad personnel were unable to locate any vital signs and it was determined by CHFD paramedics that Ms Jones was deceased.”
The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner is now investigating the cause of woman’s death, said police, adding that the “autopsy was completed” Monday and “revealed no suspicious injuries.”
“The exact cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner pending further studies.”
Jones was arrested Friday after a confrontation with her ex-husband. She was taken into custody “on charges on felonious assault, domestic violence and child endangerment,” police said.
According to Cleveland police, Jones “was being treated for several medical conditions that were documented during her intake process and she administered her prescribed medication as directed.”
On Saturday, the jail’s administrator “observed Ms Jones to be lethargic” and called emergency services. She was transported to hospital but then sent back to jail a few hours later.
On Sunday, paramedics recorded Jones’ vitals normal and she was observed “overnight through routine checks,” police said.
“She was later found unresponsive in the bed of the holding cell.”
The scandal comes shortly after another black woman was discovered dead in her cell. A 28-year-old African-American activist, Sandra Bland, was found hanged in jail cell in Waller County, Texas, on July 13. Three days prior to her death, she was detained for allegedly assaulting a state trooper during a traffic stop.
Bland’s autopsy report showed that she committed suicide by hanging. None of the injuries on her body were found to be consistent with a violent homicide.
A police dashboard video showed Bland’s confrontation with the trooper. Brian T. Encinia is seen pointing a stun gun at Bland and threatening to drag her out of the car.
A video from the arrest taken by a bystander showed the officer forcing Bland to the ground as they argued. The black woman was on the way to Texas to begin her job at Prairie View A&M University.
While Bland’s family acknowledged the possibility of Sandra struggling with depression, they continue to dispute the suicide ruling. Bland’s death caused an explosion of outrage on Twitter, where her case has been placed alongside other police brutality victims, such as Michael Brown, the 18-year-old black man killed last year in Ferguson, and Freddie Gray, a black man who died after an arrest by the Baltimore police.
RT |January 20, 2015
Nearly 350 inmates in Florida prisons died in 2014, shattering the record for most number of prisoner deaths in a single year. Many of the cases involve suspicious circumstances and involve allegations of harsh abuse by guards, which has prompted the firings of dozens of security officers and a large-scale Department of Justice investigation into the state’s correction system. RT’s Nicholas Sanchez O’Donovan is in Miami with more details.
RAMALLAH – The number of Palestinian administrative detainees held in Israeli jails without charge or trial has doubled within a year, Haaretz (Hebrew) newspaper reported Monday.
Since the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli soldiers in al-Khalil last summer, Israeli authorities notably intensified the use of administrative detention policy against Palestinians “due to the Military Advocate General’s decision to lower the requirements in such cases for holding people involved in terrorism.”
Israeli administrative detention order, based on a secret file which neither the detainee nor his lawyer are allowed to see, can be renewed more than once.
More than 1,000 administrative detainees were documented in 2003. The number had fallen significantly to 134 in August 2013, only to rise again to reach 473 in 2014 after the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli soldiers.
There are currently 391 administrative detainees in Israeli jails … twice as many as were being held before the kidnapping process.