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Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Protests in Charlotte Continue, One Protester Shot

Posted by on Thu, Sep 22, 2016 at 8:30 AM

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Top of the morning to y'all. If you haven't been up all night watching the news pour in, here's a primer for what has been happening over the past twenty-four hours. 

1) The death of Keith Lamont Scott, after being shot by police in Charlotte, sparked new protests and demonstrations in Charlotte and in Durham. One man was shot during protests in Charlotte and was in critical condition. Gov. Pat McCrory also declared a State of Emergency. 

From The Charlotte Observer

The shooting was “civilian on civilian,” the city tweeted. “@CMPD did not fire shot.”

Moments earlier, police fired tear gas at protesters at the entrance to the Omni Hotel in uptown Charlotte. Loud booms sounded, and police said explosives had been used.

“Your life is in danger, you need to move!” police in riot gear yelled.

At 9:45 p.m., police fired rubber bullets at the crowd.

At the request of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney, the State Highway Patrol is sending in troopers to assist CMPD, Gov. Pat McCrory said late Wednesday.

“The state has many additional assets nearby to assist,” McCrory said. “Any violence directed toward our citizens or police officers or destruction of property should not be tolerated.”


While the city of Charlotte said the shooting was "civilian-on-civilian" that claim was countered on social media. However, a report from The Daily Beast draws a pretty definitive conclusion
Around 8:30 p.m., a civilian fired a pistol indiscriminately into a crowd of dozens outside the hotel, turned and ran, leaving a man laying on the ground in a pool of blood on the sidewalk. There was a loud pop, then panic and confusion. Standing about 10 yards away, I looked down the barrel of a pistol. 
But tweets and Facebook posts continue to counter that point. 

The protests went well into the night, with live coverage on the cable news networks. Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts told reporters on Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Justice was sending in a team—the same team that was dispatched in Ferguson, Missouri to assess the situation. Roberts is also set to review the video of the shooting today. 

Rep. Alma Adams, who represents Charlotte, told MSNBC when asked if the video should be released that she thinks it's "the only thing that's gonna help." 

The rally in Durham remained peaceful, and we'll have a roundup from that later today. 

2) The lawsuit filed in federal court against the state's law allowing magistrates to refuse to marry same-sex couple because religious beliefs was dismissed .... because "the couples lacked legal standing as taxpayers to sue." Wait, there's more—U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn also found that the lawsuit filed by three couples "lacked evidence showing they were harmed directly" by the law that took effect in June 2015. Here's more from the News & Observer

The judge, though, did not rule out the potential for other challenges of the law by people who could show harm.

Attorneys for the couples filed notice on Wednesday of their plans to appeal the Cogburn ruling that was entered Tuesday in Asheville.

Roughly 5 percent of North Carolina’s magistrates are refusing to marry same-sex couples for religious reasons, including every magistrate in McDowell County. In such cases, a magistrate is brought in from another county for gay marriages.

In a hearing on the case in August, Cogburn said he was bothered that when magistrates who claim a religious exception fill out a form saying so, court administrators appear to require that it be kept secret.

And unsurprisingly Senate leader Phil Berger, who helped author the law, was happy to see the ruling. 

3) Two incidents at bus stops this week have parents of school-aged children in Durham on edge. 

Here's the release from the Durham Police Department: 
The first incident was reported at 6:25 a.m. Monday at a school bus stop near the intersection of Eastway Avenue and McNeil Street. Two females – ages 11 and 13 – were at the bus stop when they saw an occupied brown or champagne-colored SUV with its lights off parked in an undeveloped area of a cul-de-sac. As they started to walk away from the vehicle, the driver got out of the SUV and chased them. The females screamed and ran home. They were only able to describe the suspect as a person dressed in white clothing.

The second incident happened around 6:45 a.m. today near the intersection of Grant Street and Linwood Avenue. A 13-year-old female was by herself at the bus stop when two males, one armed with a knife, walked out of the woods and grabbed her. The teen was able to fight them off and the suspects fled when a neighbor came outside and yelled at them.The suspects were described as black males in their mid-20s to mid-30s. Both were described as 5 feet 11 inches to 6 feet 2 inches tall and muscular. Both men were wearing hoodies. One man had a chipped tooth and a tattoo on one of his fingers.

Parents and families are encouraged not to leave students alone at bus stops, and to call 911 at the sight of anything suspicious.

Anyone with information is asked to call CrimeStoppers at (919) 683-1200. CrimeStoppers pays cash rewards for information in felony cases and callers never have to identify themselves.
Stay safe out there, seriously. 

4) A total of thirteen people signed up to be considered for the vacant Durham Public Schools Board of Education seat left open when Sendolo Diaminah resigned. 
 
The Herald-Sun has a rundown of the candidates: 

The additional eight candidates for appointment reported by DPS on Wednesday included Florida DeVaul Dudley, Christine Folch, Ann Hartman, Jenna Hyland, Elizabeth Lindquist, Nadia Porter, Bettina Umstead and Shonda Wilson.

School officials said copies of all submitted application materials will be available on the DPS website by the close of business Friday. No other information on the applicants was provided on Wednesday.

The applicants confirmed Tuesday included two former District 2 representatives — Fredrick Davis and Regina George-Bowden — as well as DeWarren Langley, a failed District 2 candidate in 2014, Cecilia Polanco and Marshall Edward.


5) Rumor has it gas is on it's way to North Carolina. We can only remain hopeful. 
Thanks to television news stations we had almost minute-by-minute updates about the "gas crisis." And soon all things could be back to normal. 

Per WTVD
Colonial Pipeline has restarted the gasoline pipeline in Alabama that was shut down.

Company officials said in a statement that the pipeline reopened Wednesday evening. The pipeline leak was discovered Sept. 9 near Helena, Alabama, when state workers noticed a strong gasoline odor and sheen on a man-made retention pond.
I'll fondly remember the day that local TV news broke into regular coverage to follow a gas truck on a freeway all the way to its destination. 

And happy first day of fall, folks! Enjoy all the pumpkin spice lattes and other fall treats you want, it's now officially in season. 

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