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Someone is burning black churches again — this time in St. Louis

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Federal and local law enfrocement are investigating a string of five fires at churches in predominantly black St. Louis neighborhoods, Fox2Now reports.

The most recent fire was Saturday morning at New Life Missionary Baptist Church. All five fires happened within the last 10 days and are within three miles of each other. They all have been set at the front doors of the buildings. No one has been hurt and damage to the inside of the structures has been minimal, NBC News reports.

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Investigators from the St. Louis Fire, Regional Bomb and Arson and the federal bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms are looking for links between the fires.

Other churches set ablaze have included Bethel Non-Denominational Church, New Northside Missionary Baptist Church, St. Augustine Catholic Church and the New Testament Church of Christ, according to NBC.

“It is arson,’ said St. Louis Fire Captain Garon Mosby told Fox2. ‘These are being intentionally set. This is not spontaneous combustion, so they are not occurring on their own.”

Pastor David Briggs told Fox2 he got a phone call at 5 a.m. this morning that the church was ablaze.

“I started praising God that no one was in the building,” he told the station.

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It’s not the first time black churches have been set afire under suspicious circumstances.

In June, seven black churches burned overnight in the South, all within about a week of each other. The church fires seemed to follow the shooting deaths of nine African-American churchgoers in Charleston by a white supremacist.

Investigators later determined those fires were not linked, and some were started accidentally, TIME reports. Questions were raised about the timing, since the Ku Klux Klan became active after the Charleston church shooting at Emanuel AME.

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Church burning was a terror tactic commonly used by the Klan and white supremacists against black people in the pre-Civil Rights era South.

In St. Louis the similarity of the fires and their proximity seem to point to the fires being connected.

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“We’ve got similarities in how the fires are set, which is what we’re looking at,”  St. Louis Fire Chief Dennis Jenkerson told NBC.

Rev. Rodrick Burton called the attacks “troubling,” but added, “We’re resolved all the more to be there for this community.”

Watch a report by NBC News here:

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Eric Trump bragged about the stock market as the US crossed 100,000 dead — and it didn’t go well

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On Wednesday, the number of reported coronavirus deaths in the United States officially hit the 100,000 mark — a milestone experts have been anticipating for days.

But at the same time, President Donald Trump's second son chose to take the moment to brag about how the stock market was doing.

GREAT DAY for the DOW!! https://t.co/t0cK3wOKUu

— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) May 27, 2020

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Navajo Nation got masks from a former Trump official — that ‘are not approved by the FDA’: report

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The Indian Health Service acknowledged on Wednesday that 1 million respirator masks it purchased from a former Trump White House official do not meet Food and Drug Administration standards for “use in healthcare settings by health care providers.”

The IHS statement calls into question why the agency purchased expensive medical gear that it now cannot use as intended. The masks were purchased as part of a frantic agency push to supply Navajo hospitals with desperately needed protective equipment in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

ProPublica revealed last week that Zach Fuentes, President Donald Trump’s former deputy chief of staff, formed a company in early April and 11 days later won a $3 million contract with IHS to provide specialized respirator masks to the agency for use in Navajo hospitals. The contract was granted with limited competitive bidding.

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‘There needs to be a prosecution’ of cop who killed George Floyd: CNN guest says ‘call it what it is’

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On CNN Wednesday, criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson walked through why the Minneapolis police officer responsible for George Floyd's suffocation death must be prosecuted.

"Bottom line, question here from looking at this, should the officer face charges?" asked host Erin Burnett.

"Erin, I don't think there is any question about that, and I think if you look at it, under any reasonable measure there needs to be a prosecution," said Jackson. "You know, when you look at issues of excessive force — and I know this comes with a lot of emotion, and it should because of the blatant nature of what occurred. But if you even look at it legally and forget about the emotion, you look and you see, was there an imminent fear that the officer was facing when he had his knee in the neck of Mr. Floyd? And the answer is resoundingly no. You look at the force he used, that is the officer, and you say is it proportionate to whatever threat was posed? The answer is no, you don't see any threat. You see a person detained and really not resisting at all."

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