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Family disputes police account in shooting of unarmed California black man

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The family of an unarmed black man shot to death by police officers in the backyard of his grandparent’s house in Sacramento, California, disputes the police account that he had earlier been breaking windows, the family’s attorney said on Friday.

Two officers, responding to a report of someone breaking car windows, fatally shot Stephon Clark, 22, on Sunday night. The encounter was captured on video.

Police on Wednesday released body camera and helicopter video of the shooting in the California state capital, and that sparked street protests the next day.

 “This family completely rejects anything that the Sacramento Police Department tried to claim to justify this execution of their loved one,” said Benjamin Crump, the family’s attorney.
Crump previously represented the family of Michael Brown, a black man whose 2014 shooting death by police in Ferguson, Missouri, near St. Louis, sparked nationwide protests.

Since Brown’s death, a series of killings of unarmed black men by police across the United Stated has fueled a nationwide debate about racial bias and the use of lethal force.

Sacramento police said Clark was holding an object officers feared was a firearm and they shot him 20 times, Sacramento police said in a statement. It was later discovered he only had a cell phone, police said.

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Before the shooting, Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department deputies in a helicopter saw Clark break the sliding glass door at a neighboring house. then hop a fence into the backyard where the two officers confronted him, police said.

Investigators also found three damaged cars in the neighborhood, police said.

Protests against the shooting resumed in Sacramento on Friday, with a few dozen protesters marching to the state Capitol.

Activists expect hundreds of people on Friday night to attend a candlelight vigil for Clark several blocks from where he died.

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On Thursday, protesters in Sacramento blocked Interstate 5 and later converged outside a downtown arena, preventing many fans from entering for a National Basketball Association game. The tip-off between the Sacramento Kings and Atlanta Hawks was delayed.

The Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office is investigating the shooting. The two officers who fired their weapons were placed on administrative leave.

Sacramento police and the president of the Sacramento Police Officers Association could not be reached on Friday.

“Any loss of life is tragic and affects all members of our community, including our Sacramento police officers,” Timothy Davis, president of the Sacramento Police Officers Association, said in a statement on Thursday.

Additional reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by David Gregorio

Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
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‘Expect the worst’ as Trump doubles down on racist rhetoric to rile up his base: columnist

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In a column for the Daily Beast, commentator and Sirius radio host Dean Obeidallah claims that all signs point to Donald Trump doubling down on racist rhetoric in an effort to rally his base as his internal polling shows him losing the key states that propelled him to the White House.

As Trump officially launches his re-election bid in Orlando on Tuesday night, Obeidallah notes Trump is falling back on what helped him appeal to disgruntled white workers in the Midwest and that he will likely ramp up attacks on undocumented immigrants -- including official actions.

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‘Crimes against humanity’: Trump’s plan to deport ‘millions of illegal aliens’ – and separate parents from kids – draws outrage

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President Donald Trump Monday night, less than 24 hours before he officially kicks off his re-election campaign, leaked details of a secret U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement operation that has been in the planning stages for months.

"Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States. They will be removed as fast as they come in," Trump tweeted at 9:20 PM ET.The Washington Post, three minutes before midnight, published its report based on the President's surprise tweet, revealing details of ICE's plan.

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Here’s why ‘electability’ is a sucker’s bet in the 2020 primaries

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Primary candidates fight hard to be seen as the person best positioned to beat an incumbent, but electability is only clear in hindsight.  It isn’t quantifiable. Voters may work backwards, concluding that the candidate they personally prefer is also the most likely to win.

It’s a perception often grounded in lazy conventional wisdom. CBS reports that in key 2020 battleground states, “the belief that [Joe Biden]] could fare best against President Trump is currently propelling [him] in the early Democratic nomination race.” That belief is common despite the fact that the former Vice President is well known for being overly handsy and putting his foot in his mouth, has previously run two notably bad presidential campaigns and has been dogged by accusations of plagiarism dating back to law school.

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