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Baltimore police wrongfully kept nearly 40 minors in jail during Freddie Gray protests

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During three days following Freddie Gray’s funeral, almost 50 children were held despite 39 of them meeting standards for release, public defender office says

At least 49 children were arrested during three days of civil unrest and protest that engulfed Baltimore last week, nearly half of whom were never charged with an offence, the city’s Office of the Public Defender (OPD) has said.

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The public defender office stated that all 49, arrested between 27-29 April, were detained for up to 48 hours by the Maryland department of juvenile services (DJS), despite 39 of them meeting standards for release.

Baltimore is part of the Annie E Casey Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative (JDAI), which aims to reduce juvenile detention by measuring an arrested child’s risk level and producing an objective recommendation on whether they should remain detained. The OPD has accused the DJS, tasked with making release recommendations to the juvenile court, of ignoring the JDAI procedures and keeping all 49 children detained.

In one stark example, an elementary school fifth grader was arrested in an incident described by the public defender’s office as “protest related”. He received a low JDAI score and was recommended for release, but instead, was kept in juvenile jail for a night. In a statement the OPD continued: “The young boy was then brought to court in chains — hands and feet shackled — before finally being released to his parents.”

A spokesman for the DJS told the Guardian that the delay in releasing many of the children detained resulted from court closures and pointed out that four of the 37 children arrested during Monday’s rioting were sent to sheltered accommodation rather than jail.

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“The Department of Juvenile Services looks out for the best interests of community safety and the best interests of the youths themselves,” said the spokesman. “At the time [of the arrests] Baltimore was under a state of emergency and in a very unstable state so DIJ chose to hold onto the youth until a judge was able to see them.”

The spokesman pointed out that a JDAI score did not mandate for a release, but an assessment tool for use of the court.

The DJS could not comment on the 49 arrests, but a spokesman for the Baltimore police told the Guardian that between 25 April and 3 May, 60 juveniles were arrested.

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“We know that the consequences of putting a young child in jail, even for a short period of time, are dire,” said Melanie Shapiro, chief attorney for the juvenile division of the OPD.

“Many of these kids are already experiencing post-traumatic stress – from witnessing violence, experiencing hunger and being subjected to police harassment at very young ages. Now these kids have a juvenile record that can impact college admittance, employment and their ability to enroll in the military.”

During the unrest, Maryland governor Larry Hogan extended the legal period of detention without charge from 24 to 48 hours, prompting criticism from both the public defender office and civil rights groups who argued the executive action effectively suspended habeas corpus rights.

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Around 100 adults arrested during the riots were subsequently released without charge after police failed to produce paperwork to bring them before a court.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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5.0 earthquake strikes Ridgecrest, California — two months after 7.1

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Two months after the 7.1 earthquakes that hit outside of Los Angeles, another more modest quake was detected, ABC-7 reported.

While the location of the quake was about 20 miles north of Ridgecrest, California, at the Naval Air Warfare Center China Lake. People as far away as Clark County, Nevada also felt the rumble Thursday afternoon.

https://twitter.com/ClarkCountyNV/status/1164643506494689280

It left several people asking if it was considered a foreshock or a really late aftershock from two months ago.

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New poll shows Republicans may get wiped out — in Mitch McConnell’s home state of Kentucky

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This year, Republicans may be heading for a rough election in an unlikely state: Kentucky.

New internal Democratic polls reveal that the GOP is struggling in three critical Kentucky races taking place in November. In the gubernatorial race, incumbent GOP Gov. Matt Bevin is trailing Democratic Attorney General Steve Beshear 48 to 39.

Further down the ballot, the GOP is also vulnerable. In the attorney general race to replace Beshear, former Democratic state House Speaker Greg Stumbo is ahead 46 to 39 against Republican Daniel Cameron, the former legal counsel to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. And in the secretary of state race, where incumbent Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is retiring, Democratic former Second Lady of Kentucky and Miss America 2000 pageant winner Heather French Henry leads GOP former Justice Department lawyer Michael Adams 52 to 37.

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El Paso hospital forced to call out Trump’s lie that surgeons left the operating room to see him

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President Donald Trump bragged that he got an overwhelming welcome from Ohio and Texas when he went to visit survivors of the mass shootings before his latest vacation. Now, however, El Paso's University Medical Center is being forced to dispute the president's account of events.

"Not only did they meet with me, they were pouring out of the room. The doctors were coming out of the operating rooms. There were hundreds and hundreds of people all over the floor. You couldn’t even walk on it. So, you know, there’s a lot to happen," Trump told reporters on the White House lawn Wednesday.

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