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WATCH: Bernie Sanders calls for mandatory investigations of any deaths in police custody

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This article was originally published by The Influence, a news site that covers the full spectrum of human relationships with drugs. Follow The Influence on Facebook or Twitter.

In a testament to the lack of accountability for America’s police, law enforcement agencies aren’t even required to maintain records of lethal encounters or report them to the federal government. So there aren’t official nationwide statistics on the number of Americans who die at the hands of police.

At a press conference Wednesday, Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders said he would back legislation that would force police departments to report civilian killings.

“When individuals die under police apprehension or police custody, should that be mandatory? Yes,” Sanders told The Guardian. Shockingly, not all public officials agree; Attorney General Loretta Lynch has said she opposes forcing local departments to report killings to the federal government.

While no comprehensive data exists on the number of fatalities directly linked to drugs, the Drug War Chronicle compiles a count of drug war deaths based on media reports (including officer deaths). They counted 54 in 2011, 63 in 2012, 41 in 2013, and 39 in 2014.

These numbers aren’t surprising given the wide array of aggressive police tactics spawned by the drug war, from no-knock SWAT raids to sting operations that escalate into fatal encounters.

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Watch footage of Sanders’ remarks, as posted online, below.

This article was originally published by The Influence, a news site that covers the full spectrum of human relationships with drugs. Follow The Influence on Facebook or Twitter.

Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
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Elections 2016

Conservative Ben Shapiro tweeted something many found offensive — so now he’s calling his critics ‘garbage’

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Right wing "thought leader" Ben Shapiro appeared today to say not using the "N" word is nearly impossible as he defended conservative, pro-gun teen Kyle Kashuv, one of the Parkland survivors who just had his acceptance to Harvard rescinded over his racist remarks, which included repeated use of the "N" word.

To be clear, Shapiro denies that's what he meant.

Here is Shapiro on Twitter, in what many took as him appearing to call not using the "N" word – in Kashuv's case, repeatedly, over and over and over again, "an insane, cruel standard no one can possibly meet."

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2020 Election

Obsessed Trump: ‘Only fake polls show us behind’ Democrats. Fox News: 5 Dems would beat him

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President Donald Trump is obsessed with polls – but not facts – and increasingly so. He just fired his internal pollsters after leaked internal poll numbers show devastating lossesfor Trump in key battleground states.

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CNN

If Trump really believed he was falsely accused ‘that is not a corrupt motive’ for removing the special counsel: Bill Barr

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Attorney General William Barr told Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) that if President Donald Trump really and truly thought he was being falsely accused of collaborating with Russia to steal the 2016 presidential election, that it was "not a corrupt motive" for firing Robert Mueller, a stunning statement from the nation's highest law enforcement officer.

"As a matter of law, I think the department's position would be that the president can direct the termination or the replacement of a special counsel," said Barr. "And as a matter of law, the obstruction statute does not reach that conduct."

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