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Federal prosecutors announced they will bring no civil rights charges against two Minneapolis officers in last year's death of a 24-year-old black man, who died following a confrontation with police.

U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger largely hung the decision on a claim by protesters and witnesses that Officers Dustin Schwarze and Mark Ringgenberg handcuffed Jamar Clark before he was shot. Luger told reporters evidence "did not support that conclusion."

Even with Cliven Bundy and many of his militia supporters in jail, anger toward the federal government is still running high in some parts of the West.

Clashes between ranchers and federal land managers over grazing rights are continuing. In southern Utah, things have gotten so bad lately that some local sheriffs have threatened to arrest federal rangers who try to close forest roads and cut off access to ranchers and other users.

Sometimes it's hard to tell whether Garfield County Sheriff James "Danny" Perkins is serious or pulling your leg.

Louisiana's hate-crime protections now cover law enforcement and first responders. Gov. John Bel Edwards signed the legislation on Thursday after it had passed easily in the Republican-controlled Legislature, NPR's Debbie Elliott reports.

Flinga / Wikimedia Commons

Georgia has joined 10 other states in a lawsuit challenging whether the Obama administration can provide guidance to school districts on transgender bathroom policy. But a Georgia case shows courts have said sex discrimination laws do apply to transgender individuals.

Sam Whitehead / GPB

Some travelers headed through the south security checkpoint at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport will now get to use a new automated screening system that’s the first of its kind in the country.

The Transportation Security Administration launched the new system Tuesday and will re-open the entire checkpoint Wednesday.

Wiki Commons

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer made a big announcement recently. The company will no longer allow its products to be used for executions. Pfizer was the last FDA approved supplier of lethal injection drugs so now many states including Georgia will have to get their drugs from pharmacies that are loosely regulated. These facilities are called compounding pharmacies. 

We speak with Mercer University College of Pharmacy's Grady Strom about what compounding pharmacies are, how they're regulated, and the ethical debate among pharmacists about providing drugs for lethal injection. 

VA

Cathedral Henderson was responsible for the scheduling of nearly 2,700 patients at the Charlie Norwood VA Hospital in Augusta, Georgia. 

The 50-count indictment against Henderson alleges he canceled patients’ medical appointments, falsely stated that services had been completed or that patients refused services.

This trial is the next development in a series of issues at Charlie Norwood. In 2011, scheduling problems at the Augusta VA led to three deaths. Norwood became one of more than 100 Veterans Affairs hospitals nationwide to be investigated in 2014.

New York Times

A Georgia district attorney says his office is still investigating a November incident involving Coweta County sheriff's deputies using their stun guns 15 times on a handcuffed man in the back of an SUV.

Footage of the incident, which ended with the death of 32-year-old Chase Sherman, was made public Friday.

Law enforcement officials in Southwest Georgia say five people found dead in a burning house were shot before the fire began. A 25-year-old man is charged in the case.  

Chathamcounty.org

 

Chatham County primary elections are just around the corner. Tuesday, May 24 marks the day several local politicians will face off before general races in November.

Running for Chairman of the Chatham County Commission are incumbent Al Scott and 3rd District Commissioner Tony Center. 

Embattled Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he will disband the city's police oversight agency. It is charged with investigating police shootings and misconduct — but it has long been criticized for slow investigations that rarely result in disciplinary action.

NPR's Martin Kaste tells our Newscast unit that scrapping the Independent Police Review Authority is a response to a crisis of confidence in Chicago's police. Here's more from Martin:

In Rome's vast Piazza del Popolo, two uniformed men try to help a German tourist with directions. And, as is all too common in Rome, instructions get lost in translation.

But it's the men's uniforms that leave the woman more perplexed. The cops assisting her are not Italian. They're Chinese.

They're part of an unprecedented experiment in which Italian and Chinese police are working together this month on joint patrols on the streets of Rome and Milan.

Police say a Department of Homeland Security police officer suspected of killing his wife Thursday, is also a suspect in two shootings in suburban Maryland on Friday.

At least two people were killed and two others injured Friday in separate incidents outside two shopping centers, according to the Montgomery County Police Department.

The Montgomery County Police Department said Eulalio Tordil, 62, has been taken into custody.

In the case of the infamous serial killer dubbed the "Grim Sleeper," a Los Angeles jury has found Lonnie Franklin Jr. guilty of killing nine women and one teenage girl over the course of more than 20 years, from the 1980s to the early 2000s.

The controversial North Carolina law that prevents transgender people from using public bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity, and limits protection for LGBT people, violates federal civil rights law and can't be enforced, the U.S. Justice Department said Wednesday.

Georgia's First Black Police Officer

May 3, 2016
Linda Chen/GPB News

The first African-American police officer in Georgia was sworn in 69 years ago. A total of nine black police officers joined the Savannah Police Department on May 3, 1947. They became known, collectively, as the “Original Nine.” Retired Lieutenant John White was the first to take the oath and is the only surviving member. Producer Linda Chen spent an afternoon with White as he looked back on that landmark moment of his storied career in law enforcement. 

Three people linked to San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook — including his brother — have been arrested on charges involving an alleged "sham marriage," according to the Justice Department.

Syed Raheel Farook, 31, was taken into custody Thursday morning by the FBI along with his 31-year-old wife, Tatiana Farook, and her 26-year-old sister Mariya Chernykh. They face charges of marriage fraud conspiracy and making false statements under oath.

Baltimore police said a police detective shot and injured a boy after mistaking a replica pistol in his hand for a real gun.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis told reporters that two plainclothes detectives were driving in East Baltimore on Wednesday afternoon and saw the boy with "what looked like a firearm." Here's what Davis said happened next:

The lines were stark outside the courthouse.

A bustling street in downtown Brooklyn, N.Y., separated two groups. Each was fenced in by stone-faced police officers and steel barricades: an Asian-American community divided by Tuesday's sentencing of 28-year-old Peter Liang, the son of Chinese immigrants.

Thousands of people live in roughly 50 square blocks of Los Angeles known as Skid Row. Many are homeless and live on the street, while others live in shelters or short-term hotels.

Two Tennessee lawmakers are calling for a federal investigation into the arrest of at least five elementary school children.

According to the Daily News Journal in Murfreesboro, the children, who ranged in age from 6 to 10, were handcuffed and taken to a juvenile detention center because they failed to stop a fight that happened away from school property.

The trials of six Baltimore police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray were supposed to have been over by now. It was a year ago Tuesday that the 25-year-old black man died of a severe neck injury sustained in custody.

His death touched off violent protests, and — in a stunning announcement just days later — criminal charges.

State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby said she had heard protesters' calls for "no justice, no peace."

But so far, there's been one hung jury, lots of legal maneuvering and delays.

Gabrielle Ware / GPB

For the first time in 16 years the Savannah Chatham Metropolitan Police Dept. is now at full staff. Police Chief Joseph Lumpkin made the announcement Wednesday standing beside the  department's newest members.

The fully realized force comes as Savannah faces a murder rate nearly three times what it was last year, its worst year for homicides since 1991.

Georgia Department of Corrections

The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles has denied death row inmate Kenneth Fults’ plea for clemency. The board announced its decision Monday evening.

The 48-year-old is scheduled to die by lethal injection Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson.

Fults was convicted of the 1996 murder of his neighbor, Cathy Bounds, during a robbery attempt at her Spalding County home. He pleaded guilty, and a jury sentenced him to death. 

Savannah has close to three times as many homicides so far this year compared to this same time in 2015.

The Savannah Metro Police department says cutting down on gun related crimes is a priority but the local court system is making it hard for them to do their jobs.

Police Chief Joseph Lumpkin said if convicted felons with guns aren’t kept behind bars, they will offend again.

When the FBI tried to force Apple to unlock an iPhone last month, it was a battle of titans. There were high-powered lawyers and dueling public relations strategies. But when police encounter a privacy technology run by volunteers, things can be a little different.

For a brief span Sunday, the "C" in CHP stood for Chihuahua. That's because a black dog led what police describe as a high-speed pursuit over the Bay Bridge between San Francisco and Oakland, before being placed in official custody.

The dog's only identifying tag — black, with a silver human skull — served to cement his status as a hardcore animal who's not wowed by authority. His flight from the law was captured on a dashboard camera and posted to social media in what quickly became a well-liked video.

A Bibb County judge's tough-talk to at-risk children has gone viral. As of Friday evening, roughly 150,000 people have viewed the 10-minute discussion by Superior Court Judge Verda Colvin to about 20 kids in a Bibb County courtroom. GPB Macon's Michael Caputo spoke with Judge Colvin about her motivation to give the difficult speech to these children.

Michael Caputo: So what program brought you in these 20 or so kids together in that courtroom a couple of days ago. 

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