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Woman killed in Los Angeles store hostage standoff shot by police officer

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A woman who died in a weekend hostage standoff at a Trader Joe’s store in Los Angeles was killed by a bullet fired by a police officer, the city’s police chief said on Tuesday.

The woman, who was identified as Melyda Corado, a manager at the store, by relatives, was one of several people who had run out of the market when a shooting suspect, Gene Atkins, 28, crashed his car outside the store on Saturday while being chased by police, Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore told reporters.

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“I’m sorry to report that we’ve now determined through our forensic investigation that one of the officers’ rounds struck Ms. Corado as she was exiting the market and was in close proximity to Atkins,” Moore said.
After being struck, Corado ran back into the store and collapsed behind the manager’s desk.

Atkins is being held on a bail of $9 million and is scheduled to appear in court on Monday, Moore said. He had initially been held on $2 million bail.

Atkins is suspected of repeatedly shooting his grandmother in a separate part of the city before taking a girl hostage in a car, being chased by police and crashing outside the Trader Joe’s. He exchanged gunfire with police, threatened to kill hostages and suffered an arm wound before surrendering.

Atkins’ grandmother and the girl, who media identified as his girlfriend and who Atkins allegedly shot in the head, remained in critical condition, Moore said.

People inside the market carried Corado out of the building and she was treated by members of the Los Angeles Fire Department but died of the gunshot wounds.

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The first two officers on the scene, who have not been identified, had been members of the Los Angeles police department for two and six years respectively, Moore said.

The incident began when Atkins got into an argument with his grandmother and the 17-year-old girl. He allegedly shot his grandmother multiple times before fleeing with the 17-year-old and ending up at the Trader Joe’s, where 30 people were inside, Moore said.

Reporting by Makini Brice; Editing by Bill Trott

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Bill Barr denies giving the order to gas protesters for Trump photo-op

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America's top law enforcement office on Friday denied giving the highly-controversial order to gas protesters prior to a photo-op with President Donald Trump holding a Bible.

"Attorney General William Barr says law enforcement officers were already moving to push back protesters from a park in front of the White House when he arrived there Monday evening, and he says he did not give a command to disperse the crowd, though he supported the decision," The Associated Press reports.

"Barr’s comments in an interview with The Associated Press on Friday were his most detailed explanation yet of what unfolded outside the White House earlier this week. They come after the White House and others said repeatedly that the attorney general ordered officers to clear the park," the AP reported. "Shortly after officers aggressively pushed back demonstrators, President Donald Trump — accompanied by Barr, Pentagon leaders and other top advisers — walked through Lafayette Park to pose for a photo at a nearby church that had been damaged during the protests."

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Steve Schmidt breaks down why Joe Biden should be an ‘easy’ choice for moderate Republicans

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On MSNBC Friday, former GOP strategist Steve Schmidt criticized Sen. Lisa Murkowski's (R-AK) claim that she was struggling over whether to support the president — and laid out why she should unequivocally decide she doesn't.

"We saw the president direct violence against peaceful protesters this week, and seen the president lie to the country nearly 20,000 times," said Schmidt. "We've seen the president divide the country and incite violence. And we've seen a level of ineptitude in this historic pandemic that defied description, but included standing in front of the nation when tens of thousands are dead, talking about his ratings or telling the American people that it is a good idea to ingest or household disinfectants. We've seen a president preside over the shattering of an economy. We have seen a president race-bait, demean, disgrace his office, to desecrate the bonds of affection that exist between us as Americans."

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Jeb Bush wonders why Republicans are not ‘stepping up’ to condemn racism

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Former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-FL) wondered on Friday why more Republicans were not standing publicly against racism.

"I have said it before and I will say it again now: the GOP must not tolerate racism. Of any kind. At any time," his son, George P. Bush, the Texas Land Commissioner posted on Twitter.

He urged local GOP officials in Texas to resign for sharing racist posts on Facebook.

Jeb Bush praised the post.

"Proud of my son," he posted on Twitter.

"Are other Republican elected officials stepping up?" he wondered.

https://twitter.com/JebBush/status/1269057568015605761

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