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Justice Department drops investigation of black man’s hanging in Mississippi

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The U.S. Justice Department said on Friday it was closing its investigation into the death of a black man found hanging from a tree in Mississippi in March after finding no evidence to prove it was a homicide.

Federal investigators joined the probe into the circumstances of Otis James Byrd’s death after the 54-year-old man went missing for more than two weeks before being found in a wooded area about half a mile (0.8 km) from his home in a rural part of western Mississippi.

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The Mississippi chapter of the NAACP had called for a federal investigation into Byrd’s death amid fears it may have been a racially motivated hate crime.

But the Justice Department said it would not pursue federal criminal civil rights charges.

“After a careful and thorough review, a team of experienced federal prosecutors and FBI agents determined that there was no evidence to prove that Byrd’s death was a homicide,” the department said in a statement.


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Teenage boy’s family objects to ProPublica publication of video detailing his death

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The family of a teenage boy whose death ProPublica investigated has objected to the publication of a surveillance video that documented his last hours.

Yesterday, ProPublica published a detailed account of failings and missteps by the U.S. Border Patrol, in whose custody 16-year-old Carlos Gregorio Hernandez Vasquez died. As part of the story, ProPublica published several moments from a lengthy surveillance video in which Carlos struggles on the floor of his cell and then stops moving. The video, which had not been shared with Congress or the public, contradicts the government’s claim that Carlos was discovered as a result of a “welfare check.’’ It shows that his cellmate awoke, saw his motionless body, and summoned Border Patrol agents.

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Mass rally marks six-month anniversary of Hong Kong protest movement

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Hong Kong democracy protesters are hoping for huge crowds later Sunday at a rally they have billed as a "last chance" for the city's pro-Beijing leaders in a major test for the six-month-old movement.

The march comes two weeks after pro-establishment parties got a drubbing in local elections, shattering government claims that a "silent majority" opposed the protests.

But activists say public anger is building once more after chief executive Carrie Lam and Beijing ruled out any further concessions despite the landslide election defeat.

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Pensacola gunman showed mass shooting videos at party: report

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The Saudi military student who carried out a deadly shooting spree at a US naval base showed videos of mass shootings at a dinner party the night before the attack, The New York Times reported Saturday.

The shooting Friday in a classroom building at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida left three dead and eight wounded, including two responding sheriff's deputies.

The revelation about the dinner party came as authorities probed whether the shooter had any accomplices.

"We're finding out what took place, whether it's one person or a number of people," President Donald Trump told reporters. "We'll get to the bottom of it very quickly.

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