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Ex-Colorado policeman gets 16 years for fatal on-duty shooting

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A former Colorado police officer convicted of murder for fatally shooting a man in the back while on duty two years ago was sentenced on Thursday to 16 years in prison, authorities said.

James Adam Ashby, 33, was found guilty in June of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Jack Jacquez, 27, who was skateboarding when first confronted by the officer in the rural farming town of Rocky Ford, about 130 miles (210 km) southeast of Denver.

Otero County District Court Judge Mark MacDonnell sentenced Ashby to prison and fined him $10,000, court spokesman Rob McCallum said on Twitter.

Ashby, who was fired from the Rocky Ford police department after his arrest in the shooting, had faced a potential prison term of up to 48 years for his conviction.

It is relatively rare for U.S. law enforcement officers to be criminally prosecuted and convicted of murder stemming from the use of lethal force in the line of duty.

Prosecutors accused Ashby of lying about the circumstances surrounding the October 2014 shooting, which grew out of an encounter in which the policeman confronted Jacquez on patrol while the younger man was riding a skateboard along a highway.

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After asking Jacquez what he was doing, Ashby said the younger man responded with a profanity and took off, according to a state police arrest warrant in the case.

But a civilian who was in Ashby’s cruiser on a “ride-along” told investigators that Jacquez had merely said he was going home, court documents said.

Ashby also told investigators he feared for his life when he followed Jacquez into the man’s darkened house, believing Jacquez was armed with a baseball bat, and opened fire when he thought he was about to be assaulted.

Jacquez died from a single gunshot that struck his spinal cord and pierced his heart and a lung, an autopsy concluded.

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Jacquez’s family has filed a federal lawsuit against Ashby, the city of Rocky Ford and its police chief, alleging Ashby was hired by the department despite a history of excessive-force complaints lodged against him in another town where he previously worked.

(Editing by Steve Gorman and Peter Cooney)

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Progressive reformer claims victory in fiercely-contested Queens DA race

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Progressive reformer Tiffany Cabán has declared victory in her campaign versus Melinda Katz in the Queens District Attorney race.

With 99% of precincts reporting, Cabán held a lead of 1,090 votes, The New York Times reports.

Cabán was backed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

Katz was backed by Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), who chairs the Queens Democratic Party, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY)

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721257353076737

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721448168710151

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2020 Election

New 2020 poll shows Trump trailing all Democrats — some by double-digits

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President Donald Trump trails all of his Democratic rivals in hypothetical matchups of the 2020 presidential race, according to the result of a new poll released Tuesday.

This article originally appeared on Salon.

The survey, conducted by Emerson Polling, found that the president lags behind former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., by 10 points nationally — 45 percent to 55 percent. He also trails Sen. Elizabeth Warren by six points — 47 percent to 53 percent —and Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg by four points — 48 percent to 52 percent.

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Beto O’Rourke’s ‘war tax’ policy proposal is straight out of ‘Starship Troopers’

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Amid an overcrowded Democratic presidential candidate field, it's hard to distinguish yourself from the pack if you don't slot easily into the scale that runs from "pro-corporate centrist" to "left-populist." If you're former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke —  who falls somewhere in the middle, politically, and somewhere towards the top, looks-wise — you pull a militaristic policy proposal out of your hat that recalls some of the most campy pseudo-fascist sci-fi ever written.

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 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH 

Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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