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Pennsylvania cop accused of homicide after shooting unarmed 59-year-old man dead

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A police officer in Hummelstown, Pennsylvania faces homicide charges for shooting and killing an unarmed man lying facedown on the ground during a traffic stop, the Associated Press reported.

Investigators said Officer Lisa J. Mearkle shot 59-year-old David Kassick in the back twice during the incident last month. The encounter began when Mearkle tried to pull Kassick over for expired emissions and inspection stickers, only for him to speed off.

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When the officer caught up to Kassick near his sister’s house, he left his car and tried to escape on foot. Mearkle then used her Taser on Kassick. Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico said footage recorded by the officer’s weapon appears to show Kassick trying to take the weapon’s probes out of his back before she shot him.

The arrest affadavit states, “At the time Officer Mearkle fires both rounds from her pistol, the video clearly depicts Kassick lying on the snow covered lawn with his face toward the ground. Furthermore, at the time the rounds are fired nothing can be seen in either of Kassick’s hands, nor does he point or direct anything toward Officer Mearkle.”

Mearkle, a 15-year veteran of her department, has argued that she thought Kassick was reaching into his jacket for a gun.

The Harrisburg Patriot-News reported that Mearkle was released from jail on Tuesday on $250,000 bail. Her next court appearance is set for April 20. She is currently charged with criminal homicide, but could face more specific charges as her case continues.

The suspect’s attorney, Brian Perry, said at a press conference that Kassick refused to comply with her instructions, and that she “did what she felt she had to do” because she had no way of knowing that he was not reaching for a weapon at the time of his death.

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No weapons were found at the scene, but a syringe was found under Kassick’s body. Attorneys for his family said in a statement that he battled addiction problems.

“Mr. Kassick is now dead as a result of a traffic stop, a routine traffic stop,” said one of the attorneys, Christopher Slusser. “He should not be dead. He should not have died as a result of that traffic stop. And the manner in which he was shot — you can infer from that what you will.”

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Matt Gaetz forgot which network he was on: Surprised CNN anchor said ‘I’ve never been called Sean Hannity’

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Rep. Matt Gaetz seemed to confuse cable news networks during a Thursday appearance

Gaetz was interviewed by CNN's Chris Cuomo, who aggressively challenged Gaetz on the facts as the Florida Republican attempted to defend President Donald Trump.

Despite the fact Cuomo's interview was nothing like the puff segments Gaetz is used to on Fox, the congressman seemed confused by the end.

"Congressman, you are always welcome, wherever I am, at nine or eleven, whenever," Cuomo said.

"Thanks Sean," Gaetz replied.

"Did you just call me Sean?" Cuomo asked. "Did you just call me Sean?"

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California lawmaker who chaired Republican Assembly caucus leaving GOP — to become an independent: report

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On Thursday, the Sacramento Bee reported that California Assemblyman Chad Mayes, the former Assembly Minority Leader, is leaving the Republican Party and registering as No Party Preference.

"Instead of focusing on solutions for the big problems that we've got, we focused on winning elections," said Mayes in his announcement. "For me, I'm at the point in my life where I'm done with gamesmanship."

Mayes, a controversial figure who was implicated in an affair with a fellow public official, represents Yucca Valley. He is the second Republican Assemblyman this year to leave the party, after Brian Maienschein of San Diego, who Maienschein of San Diego.

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‘Quantum physics generator’ incident in Ohio results in evacuation — hazmat found no radiation

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Authorities in Columbus, Ohio evacuated dozens of homes after a man called 911 to report being burned by a

"Firefighters say nothing threatening was found in a northwest Columbus garage," WCMH-TV reported. "According to firefighters, a man called and reported that he received ‘RF burns’ while building some sort of ‘quantum physics generator’ in a garage. The man used words like ‘particle accelerator,’ ‘alpha rays,’ and ‘radiation’ while describing how he was burned."

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