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Four guards at NYC’s Rikers jail convicted in beating, coverup

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Four guards at New York City’s troubled Rikers Island jail complex were convicted at trial in connection with the beating of an inmate and a subsequent cover-up effort, authorities said on Thursday.

Christopher Huggins, 34, and Michael Dorsainvil, 36, were convicted of assault and filing false records, while Ronald Donnelley, 63, and Mark Anglin, 38, were found guilty of filing false records following a two-week trial.

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The convictions are the latest in a string of prosecutions by local authorities of Rikers employees, part of a wide-ranging effort to combat pervasive violence and abuse at the jail complex.

With approximately 8,000 inmates at 10 separate facilities, Rikers is one of the world’s largest correctional complexes.

The city’s Department of Investigation (DOI), which looks into corrupt employees, and Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark have made prosecuting crimes at Rikers a priority.

“These verdicts send a strong message to the city’s correction officers: engage in brutal behavior, lie to cover it up, and you will be punished,” said Mark Peters, the DOI commissioner.

Huggins and Donnelley were found guilty on Thursday by Bronx state Supreme Court Justice Michael Gross, while Dorsainvil and Anglin were found guilty by a jury on Wednesday.

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City officials, meanwhile, have announced a series of reforms, prompted in part by a settlement between the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan and the city over Rikers violence.

(Reporting by Joseph Ax; Editing by Chris Reese)

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GOP leader McCarthy swats aside Fiona Hill’s national security testimony debunking his Ukraine conspiracy theory

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On Thursday, during one of the final scheduled impeachment hearings this week, National Security Council official Fiona Hill demolished President Donald Trump's conspiracy theory that Ukraine, rather than Russia, meddled in the 2016 election, calling it a "fictional narrative" and noting that it originated with the Kremlin itself.

But in conversation with reporters, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) flatly disbelieved Hill's testimony, and insisted he still held onto the theory.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told me that he was not going to lose any GOP votes during impeachment.

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Environmental justice advocates blast Trump EPA for ‘dangerous’ rollback of chemical disaster rule

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"Safety requirements at these facilities should be stepped up, not rolled back. But this is what we've come to expect from the Trump EPA."

Environmental justice groups condemned the Trump administration Thursday for catering to the chemical industry after the Environmental Protection Agency finalized a rollback of Obama-era disaster prevention measures that were implemented to protect workers at and residents of communities with chemical plants.

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Trump’s personal interests have directly undermined national security and election integrity: CNN correspondent

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On Thursday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," correspondent Jim Sciutto broke down a key takeaway from the impeachment hearings.

"We are one year away — less than a year away from the next election, three years after Russia, with consequence, interfered, meddled in the 2016 election," said Sciutto. "One thing is clear from everybody who testified, the president of the United States never expressed any interest in defending the U.S. against that kind of interference. What he did, he was interested in a whole lot of other stuff that undermines that goal of defending U.S. elections from Russian interference, one of which Fiona Hill highlighted there, presenting an alternate explanation, a false one it was Ukraine that somehow hacked the DNC server, not Russia."

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