Terrance Kellom, 19 when he was gunned to death in his own father’s home by multi-jurisdictional task force April 27, 2015. Prosecutor Kym Worthy claimed he threatened cops with a hammer, but his fingerprints are NOT on the hammer.
Over? This ain’t over by a damned sight!
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy did a great job acting as defense attorney for ICE agent Mitchell Quinn by dehumanizing the victim Terrance Kellom and slandering his family. Unfortunately, that’s not her job. As prosecutor, Kym Worthy’s job is to protect us from killers. Sometimes those killers happen to be cops.
You can’t convict killers by taking everything they say at face value and looking for evidence to support their claims. Worthy has held all the cards for 4 months.
Now we’ll have some time to look at her hand and point out discrepancies in the police account the way she was able to find fault with the account of a traumatized man who’d just seen his son die before his eyes.
AIYANA JONES, 7, gunned down by Detroit police May 16, 2010. Portrait by Gyasi Jones.
If only this were an isolated case. Sadly, it is not.
As with the cases of RIP Aiyana Mo’Nay Stanley-Jones. and RIP Adaisha Miller, Worthy did everything in her power to shield the police from accountability for the death of Terrance.
Stand with us Friday as we assemble in the plaza outside the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice at 4pm.
We’ll begin to delve into the evidence against Mitchell Quinn with a critical eye and let Kym Worthy know what we think of her performance.
A Black 18-year-old killed by police in St Louis earlier this week was shot in the back, authorities said on Friday, adding weight to protests that have challenged the official account of his death.
Mansur Ball-Bey, 18, dead after being shot in back as police served a search warrant.
A preliminary autopsy by the city medical examiner determined that Mansur Ball-Bey “sustained a single fatal gunshot wound to his back”, according to a statement released by the St Louis metropolitan police department.
Police chief Sam Dotson acknowledged to the St Louis Post-Dispatch, which first reported the autopsy finding earlier on Friday, that it may mean Ball-Bey was shot while running away. He said, however, “I just don’t know yet.” The shooting is being investigated by the department itself.
Renewed protests broke out in St Louis on Wednesday evening after Ball-Bey was killed as officers executed a search warrant at his aunt’s home that morning. Police deployed teargas and smoke canisters to sweep demonstrators from the streets and nine people were arrested, as some threw rocks and bottles at police lines.
Chris Ball-Bey, the brother of Mansur Ball-Bey, sits by his brother’s memorial after a candlelight vigil on Walton Ave in St Louis on Thursday. Photograph: Lawrence Bryant/Reuters
Police swiftly said Ball-Bey “turned and pointed a gun” at officers after fleeing the home raid through the back door with another teenager. “Fearing for their safety, two officers fired their weapons,” they said on Wednesday. Some witnesses have insisted, however, that the 18-year-old was not carrying a weapon and was shot as he ran away.
Two white male police officers shot at Ball-Bey, police said. The pair, 33 and 29, have both worked at the department for seven years. Their names have not been released and it is not clear which officer’s shot struck Ball-Bey. The officers have been placed on leave.
At a press conference on Friday afternoon, Dotson insisted the medical examiner’s findings “do not change the scope of the investigation” and pledged the inquiry would provide a “complete picture” of what happened.
Dotson said police had spoken to a witness who supported the officers’ allegations against Ball-Bey. He said the witness had, however, also reported the 18-year-old “tossed” the gun at some point, but did not elaborate further.
Dotson said that in preparation for possible further unrest, St Louis city officers were working 12-hour shifts. He appealed for calm from protesters and urged a 14-year-old boy he said escaped after Ball-Bey’s shooting to come forward.
“We will continue to share as much information as we can as quickly as we can,” said Dotson.
The shooting took place about nine miles south-west from where Michael Brown, an unarmed black 18-year-old, was shot dead in August last year by a white police officer in the St Louis suburb of Ferguson. Ball-Bey’s death also fell on the anniversary of the fatal police shooting of Kajieme Powell, a black 25-year-old who had a knife, nine miles to the east.
Brown’s shooting unleashed months of protests in the region and elsewhere, thrusting issues of race and criminal justice on to the national political stage.
Mansur Ball-Bey was a member of the nation of Moors.
Police alleged Ball-Bey was carrying a stolen gun equipped with an extended magazine of ammunition. They said four guns and some crack cocaine were recovered from the scene.
Friday’s statement said the metropolitan police department’s “force investigative unit” would complete a full inquiry into the shooting. Its report will be given to local and federal prosecutors – Jennifer Joyce, the St Louis circuit attorney, and Richard Callahan, the US attorney for the eastern district of Missouri – for review, the statement said.
VOD: Mansur Bell-Bey’s killing brings the total number of people killed by law enforcement in the U.S. in 2015 to date to 667, according to http://killedbypolice.net/. In 2014, 1106 human beings died at the hands of police. People are being killed at the rate of at least one every three days.
Terrance Kellom and his babies Terrance Desmond and Terranae Destiny Kellom, and other family members. Photo: Facebook Janay Williams
Autopsy report released after Worthy press conference, shows Kellom WAS shot in back; attorney to file civil suit
3 other entrance gunshot wounds noted by ME; no second autopsy done
No fingerprints on hammer Kellom allegedly used to pound hole in upstairs crawl space, threaten cops
Police gun(s) that fired 7 bullets not identified; invading task force included I.C.E., Wayne, Oakland County sheriffs; Livonia, Detroit PD’s
BLMDetroit calls protest for Friday, Aug. 28 @ 4 p.m., Frank Murphy Hall
“I want her to resign by Sept. 21, 2016, the 20th anniversary of my brother Lamar’s death”—Arnetta Grable, Jr.
By Diane Bukowski
August 20, 2015, updated August 21, 2015
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy points to autopsy diagram of body of Terrance Kellom, 19, during press conference Aug. 19, declaring no charges will be brought In his death.
DETROIT – ““I knew she wasn’t going to prosecute this dude,” Arnetta Grable Jr. told VOD after Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy’s announcement on Aug. 19 that no charges would be brought against I.C.E. agent Mitchell Quinn in the death of Terrance Kellom, 19, on April 27.
“I knew the media was going to prosecute Terrance Kellom at the same time, like they did with my brother Lamar,” she said.
“I was at the hair salon when Kym Worthy announced her decision on the Channel 2 News,” Grable explained. “People in the shop were saying Terrance Kellom was just a bad seed, that he had warrants out. Nobody ever considered that he was not convicted, and never will be convicted because he’s dead now. Nobody ever considered that his family said he was turning his life around. She [Worthy] got up there and justified the shooting. No one considered how the hell did he get shot in the back if he was coming at the cops with a hammer.”
Grable has been active in the protest movement against Kellom’s killing by a “Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Team.
Arnetta Grable, Jr. (r) with others at vigil for Terrance Kellom May 2, 2015.
Three-time killer cop Eugene Brown shot Grable’s brother Lamar, 20, to death in 1996. Worthy also refused to prosecute Brown, despite a multi-million jury judgment in the family’s favor, and exposure of an internal police report recommending that charges be filed against Brown for killing Grable and others. The family’s battle to clear Lamar’s name took ten years, overlapping Worthy’s tenure in office.
Kellom was shot multiple times and killed after a seven-member multi-jurisdictional Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Task Force (D-FAT) invaded his father Kevin Kellom’s home with an armed robbery arrest warrant, but no search warrant. Police identified the shooter as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (I.C.E.) agent Mitchell Quinn, a former Detroit police officer. They said he fired because Kellom threatened him with a hammer.
Kevin Kellom holds his newborn granddaughter Terranae Destiny Kellom at rally June 18; his grandson Terrance Desmond Kellom is behind him.
“The police knocked on the door, I opened the door, they came in,” Terrance’s father Kevin Kellom said in part April 28. “There was no need to come in the way they did. They brought my son downstairs, they executed my son in my face. My son died with clutched fists, no hammer. My son reached for me, he got shot twice in his chest. After that, eight more shots ring out. Every time you come in contact with a young Black man, does it have to result in death?”
Worthy acted as judge and jury post-execution during the press conference Aug. 19. She declared Kellom guilty of the armed robbery cited in the warrant and other crimes without a trial. Her declaration was put into black and white in a timeline slide which said for Mar. 31, 2015, “T. Kellom robs pizza del.”
Part of timeline slide Worthy showed at press conference.
That was the arrest warrant police were executing when they also executed Kellom. They entered the home without a search warrant, which was not signed until hours after Kellom was killed.
Worthy also claimed Kevin Kellom, who said he had witnessed the first two shots before police shoved him into the dining room, lied repeatedly in his accounts. She said Kellom and five other witnesses, out of a total of 17, were subjected to interrogations through court-ordered investigative subpoenas. At these events, individuals are not allowed legal representation and are forced to give their statements under oath in a hostile atmosphere.
“As always, we let the facts in evidence and absolutely nothing else guide us,” she said. “No one person, not the news media, not letters, not protests, not petitions, not emails threatening or otherwise, not phone calls, not any member of the public, not any organization, and no threats will dictate any perceived ideas of justice.”
Numerous police cars surrounded the Kellom home at Evergreen and W. Chicago on Detroit’s west side during the press conference, according to a report from a Kellom family member. Evidently, Detroit Police Chief James Craig feared a popular uprising in reaction to the decision.
Hundreds marched down W. Chicago in Detroit from Terrance Kellom’s home April 28. Photo: Kenny Snodgrass
Hundreds had marched outside the Kellom home, taking the streets, the day after Terrance Kellom was killed, as a fiery rebellion raged on in Baltimore against the police custody death of Freddie Gray, Jr. A vigil and three other protests of Kellom’s death occurred afterwards, with one still planned for August 28.
Quinn, a U.S. Marshal, two sheriffs from Oakland and Wayne Counties, one Livonia police officer, and two Detroit police officers comprised the D-FAT team involved, Worthy said.
Terrance Kellom smiles for a friend who grieved his death on Facebook.
“Terrance Kellom was shot four times,” Worthy said, as she laughed during an aside with a Michigan State Trooper, because she at first said seven times.
“Once in the neck with a downward trajectory and no exit wound, once in the shoulder with a downward trajectory and no exit wound; once in the posterior flank with a slightly upward trajectory near an exit wound on the abdomen, and once through and through in the thigh and groin with a downward trajectory that exited out of the groin area.”
Referring to the “posterior flank” wound, she said, “The wound at the far right of his back is consistent with his body twisting slightly to the right.”
No such explanation is given in the complete Medical Examiner’s report, finally released Aug. 20, and Worthy cited no ballistics evidence to that effect. The ME’s report says simply regarding the gunshot wound to Kellom’s back:
Family attorney Karri Mitchell has contended all along that Kellom was shot at least once in the back, shedding doubt on the police contention that only ThQuinn shot Kellom as he ran towards him holding a hammer.
The downward trajectories of the wounds also do not appear to support the prosecution’s claim that Kellom was standing up as he advanced on D-FAT members. Kellom’s father said at one point that he fell to his knees after the first two shots.
Terrance Kellom autopsy diagram shows he was shot in the back as family and attorney claimed.
Worthy showed a body diagram of Kellom’s gunshot wounds from the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s (WCME) autopsy report, but did not release the entire report to the media at the time, or to his family afterwards, choosing instead to give her own interpretation of the chart.
The report was finally released the next day. In a highly unusual move, Worthy earlier ordered the autopsy report and all other evidence in the case sealed pending her decision on charging Quinn.
Worthy’s Communications Officer Maria Miller said regarding the sealed autopsy report, “We have the ability to request that the Medical Examiner not distribute the report if it will interfere with an investigation. A number of witnesses had to be questioned about the fatal shooting. In this instance it was granted [by the ME] because we were able to show that the release of the information would interfere with the investigation.”
She said she could not cite a legal explanation for this and referred that question to attorneys for the ME. In its original May 8 Freedom of Information Act request for the report, VOD cited Swickard v. Wayne County Medical Examiner, 438 Mich. 536, 475 N.W.2d 304, 19 Media L. Rep. 1833 (1991), affirming 184 Mich. App. 662, 459 N.W.2d 92, 17 Media L. Rep. (1990) (summary disposition affirmed for newspaper in FOIA action holding autopsy reports to be public records).
Kevin Kellom’s wife Yvette Johnson at protest June 8, 2015.
Worthy said occupants of the house at the time of the shooting were Terrance Kellom and his unidentified “new girlfriend,” his father Kevin Kellom with his “girlfriend” Yvette Johnson (to whom he is married), Terrance’s sister Teria and her boyfriend, and Terrance’s unidentified “new girlfriend.”
“Kevin Kellom’s girlfriend was in the upstairs bedroom partially clothed, so a female officer was called upstairs,” Worthy said.
“Two DFAT officers went upstairs, and found Terrance Kellom hiding in an attic crawl space,” she continued. “The Oakland County Sheriff looked into the crawl space, and observed him hiding by a heating duct. Terrance Kellom was ordered out, but he yelled at the officer, ‘I have a gun, shoot me bitch, kill me.’ He was observed with a hammer in his hands. He disconnected the heating duct and began to hit floor with the hammer, then crawled through the hole he made in the floor. The DFAT officer watching him radioed that he was going through the floor. The officer ran back downstairs to the southwest bedroom, where he believed he would drop down.”
Worthy said no fingerprints were identified on hammer, which she alleged Kellom used to smash a hole in a crawl space floor, then threaten police. Circled areas show drops of blood id’d as Kellom’s.
Despite Worthy’s description of Kellom’s repeated, forceful use of the hammer, she said Kellom’s fingerprints were NOT found on the hammer, only spots of his blood. She showed a photo of the hammer and a map describing its alleged location on the hallway floor near where Kellom fell.
This reporter earlier went to the upstairs bedroom involved with a family member. The “crawl space” is actually part of that bedroom, not an “attic.” There is no third level in the house.
A very small hole in the crawl space floor was observed, which did not appear large enough for a human being to get through. Worthy claimed it was large enough for Kellom, who was 5’9” and 145 lbs., measuring it at 20 by 11.5 inches. There was additionally no heating duct apparatus in the crawl space, although photos Worthy displayed of it showed large pieces of metal hanging out. The photos were hard to interpret and are not shown here, but in the link at bottom of story. They contain several confusing overlays.
She did not explain why the three police officers said to be in the room stood by idly while Kellom took time hammering a hole in a solid floor, instead of restraining and cuffing him.
Hole in the southwest bedroom closet ceiling can be seen above and to the right of the video arrow. Worthy alleged Kellom jumped through it from a crawl space upstairs. It is small and is directly above a very small space over a closet shelf. Kevin Kellom told Fox2, “You can see nobody could get through that hole.”
“Quinn heard him dropping to the floor [in the southwest bedroom],” Worthy continued.
“He [Kellom] came out of the bedroom with the hammer in hand. He was ordered to drop it several times. He did not, and continued to advance. Quinn fired once, and paused briefly, but Kellom continued to advance. Agent Quinn fired several rounds while backing up, and Kellom fell forward. Two DPD officers present witnessed the weapon [hammer] in his hand. The male DPD officer drew his own weapon, but did not fire any rounds.”
Worthy said a joint Detroit and Michigan State police task force investigated Kellom’s death, and her office followed up with its own investigation during the 98 days following the issuance of a warrant for Quinn. Quinn is a former Detroit police officer who compiled his own record of brutality lawsuits and a felony charge of assaulting his former wife, which was later dismissed, during his time on that force.
Map showing where fired bullets were found.
Map showing location of shell casings from fired bullets.
Worthy said the investigation also considered “dozens” of pieces of evidence, including bullet trajectory, blood spatter patterns, paint analysis, fingerprints, trace evidence of insulation fibers and drywall, serology including DNA, and blood analysis, in addition to witness interviews and the autopsy report.
Photo of hall after Kellom’s killing. It is not time stamped. It is unknown whether hammer at lower left was there when Kellom was killed, or was placed there by police afterwards, like a “throw-away” gun.
She displayed a map of shell casings and bullets found. She said there were seven fired jacketed .40 caliber bullets, one in the southwest bedroom, one in the northwest bedroom, one in the hall way at the base of the steps, and one lodged in the doorjamb of the stairwell behind its molding.
Seven spent .40 caliber casings were also found, four in the north half of the living room, one in the hallway at the base of the stairs, one along the north wall of the bathroom, and one in the top shelf of the closet at the end of the hallway.
The three other bullets were found in Kellom’s body by the Medical Examiner, she said. She did not identify from whose gun(s) the bullets came.
Both maps show an extremely scattered range of found bullets and casings. A recent study showed that spent shell casings land to the right and rear of the shooter 75 percent of the time, so exactly where were the shooter(s) located? (See ShellCasingStudy.)
Worthy said fibers and drywall particles shown in the photos had adhered to Kellom’s clothes as he allegedly jumped through the hole, but that the MSP lab could not match paint chips found on Kellom’s clothing to the paint in the ceiling of the southwest downstairs bedroom.
Cornell Squires, of the Original Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, was present during the April 28 rally at the Kellom home.
Members of the Original Detroit Coalition against Police Brutality at the April 28 protest against Terrance Kellom’s killing. They are (l to r), Arnetta Grable, Jr., Butch Carrington, Arnetta Grable, Sr., Herman Vallery (father of Lamar Grable), and Cornell Squires.
“This is usual with Kym Worthy’s office—stall the case, interfere with it, block evidence, and then dismiss any charges,” he said. “Kym Worthy cannot be trusted. You have to do your own independent investigation. We tried to encourage the family to get a second autopsy report, because we knew this was going to go down. Kym Worthy is for sale when it comes to police officers. A second autopsy would have been credible evidence to prove any foul play.”
Rev. Curtis Williams of Trinity Chapel Funeral Home refused to allow second autopsy of Terrance Kellom unless family paid additional fees for funeral.
Arnetta Grable, Sr. said she had already lined up Macomb County Medical Examiner Mark Spitz to do a second autopsy at the funeral home, with repairs to the body completed in time for the funeral.
But Roosevelt “Butch” Carrington, Jr. whose own brother Rodrick Carrington was killed by Eugene Brown in 1995, said he went to the funeral home with his cousin Kevin Kellom. He said funeral home director Rev. Curtis Williams told them the funeral would cost more money if a second autopsy was done.
Worthy said during the press conference that she has prosecuted numerous cops, including one recently for lying during an investigation.
However, during her tenure, she has prosecuted only two police officers out of dozens who killed Detroiters, in cases covered by this reporter. They were Detroit cop Joseph Weekley, who killed Aiyana Jones, 7, in 2010, and Michigan State Trooper Jay Morningstar, for killing a homeless man in Greektown. The prosecution clearly threw the case against Weekley during three trials covered extensively by VOD, and a jury acquitted Morningstar.
Arnetta Grable, Jr. said new leadership is needed, reflecting the sentiments of many young people across the U.S. as they watch their counterparts slaughtered by law enforcement, up to 746 so far this year alone, according to statistics compiled by http://killedbypolice.net.
Members of Lamar Grable’s family and other victims of police officer Eugene Brown outside Frank Murphy Hall, where they met with Kym Worthy’s staff to demand charges against Brown. She refused to charge him.
“I think it starts in community, with leaders who are supposed to have our back and don’t have our back,” Grable Jr. said. “I’m tired of it. I feel that we as a people, Black and white and whatever, need to stand up and make a decision about who’s going to lead us, or decide to lead ourselves. We are running ourselves into the ground more and more, listening to ministers, civil rights leaders, and others in the community that don’t have our back. We need somebody willing to fight for us. It’s not going to be the feds, the city, the state, or any government. How did they let them run up in Terrance Kellom’s house and treat him like that? How did they let them kill a little bitty boy half their size like that? We need to rise up. We can’t sit around and do nothing.”
So-called community leaders in Detroit have repeatedly stopped or sabotaged militant protests like that in Baltimore which forced murder charges to be brought against four cops involved in the police custody death of Freddie Gray, Jr.
Hundreds who attended a vigil for Aiyana Jones the night of May 16, 2010, after Detroit police killed her that morning, began to march on the police station afterwards, but were stopped by Ron Scott, according to three individuals present at the vigil, including Kenny Snodgrass, who took the video below.
A march and rebellion at that time may have changed the tenor of events afterwards, during which the entire Jones family has faced unrelenting media attacks and watched as killer cop Weekley walked.
Two weeks later, Rev. Horace Sheffield, Sam Riddle, and several others forestalled a mini-rebellion in an east-side neighborhood near Aiyana’s after Grosse Pointe and State Police shot and wounded an unarmed young man in the neck as he exited his car after a chase.
Kym Worthy takes the oath of office as Prosecutor Jan. 6, 2004, as her adopted daughter Anastasia looks on. Worthy has refused to support state legislation barring juvenile life without parole.
Grable, Jr. called Prosecutor Worthy an “evil” person.
“She’s never really been a mother, she never cared about the lives of us in this city or this state or she would have tried to do better,” Grable, who has two children, including a son named Lamar after her brother, said. “Instead, she is doing the devil’s work. Next year will be the 20th anniversary of Lamar’s death, on Sept. 21, 2016. By that date, I want her to resign. We’re going to find everything we can find on her, so that she won’t show her face in Detroit again.”
FACEBOOK EVENT TO PROTEST EXONERATION OF POLICE IN TERRANCE KELLOM’S DEATH
WE’VE HEARD FROM KYM WORTHY; NOW KYM WORTHY HEARS FROM US!
FRIDAY, AUGUST 28, 2015 @ 4 pm
Protest at Frank Murphy Hall of Justice, Gratiot at St. Antoine
Over? This ain’t over by a damned sight! Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy did a great job acting as defense attorney for ICE agent, Mitchell Quinn by dehumanizing the victim, Terrance Kellom and slandering his family. Unfortunately, that’s not her job. As prosecutor, Kym Worthy’s job is to protect us from killers. Sometimes those killers happen to be cops.
Marchers protesting Terrance Kellom’s death on April 28 also remembered Aiyana Stanley Jones.
You can’t convict killers by taking everything they say at face value and looking for evidence to support their claims. Worthy has held all the cards for 4 months. Now we’ll have some time to look at her hand and point out discrepancies in the police account the way she was able to find fault with the account of a traumatized man who’d just seen his son die before his eyes.
If only this were an isolated case. Sadly, it is not. As with the cases of RIP Aiyana Mo’Nay Stanley-Jones. and RIP Adaisha Miller, Worthy did everything in her power to shield the police from accountability for the death of Terrance. Stand with us Friday as we assemble in the plaza outside the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice at 4pm. We’ll begin to delve into the evidence against Mitchell Quinn with a critical eye and let Kym Worthy know what we think of her performance.
Protesters at Flint city hall in January. Flint’s Emergency Manager ordered the city to disconnect from the Detroit Water & Sewerage Dept. and establish its own water treatment facilities. Residents have since complained of polluted water, higher rates.
Genesee County Judge Archie Hayman issues injunction lowering Flint water bills, stopping shut-offs immediately
Order results from lawsuit filed in 2014 by Flint residents
Genesee County Circuit Court Judge Archie Hayman/file photo Flint Journal
FLINT, MI — An order signed Monday, Aug. 17, would lower water and sewer rates by 35 percent in Flint and could require the city to drop a ready-to-service fee charged to customers.
City officials said they will appeal the decision and ask that the injunction be put on hold.
“We will immediately file an appeal of the court’s order and seek a stay pending higher review,” City Attorney Pete Bade said in a statement released by the city. “It is our position the court should not have issued the injunction. The court abused its discretion by granting the injunction and ignored well-established legal standards.”
Hayman’s decision, reached last week and formalized Monday, also orders the city to meet with an attorney representing Flint residents who filed the lawsuit in 2014 and negotiate repayment of $15.7 million to the city’s sewer fund.
The judge’s injunction orders the city to stop water disconnections and liens for past-due bills effective immediately.
Flint’s EM had city set up its own pipeline (red) from Lake Huron, duplicating DWSD pipeline (blue).
“I love this city. I am not trying to run the city into bankruptcy,” said Genesee Circuit Court Judge Archie Hayman. “I’m just making it follow the law.”
Unless the state Court of Appeals stays Hayman’s decision, it could result in lower water and sewer bills for Flint customers almost immediately, said attorney Val Washington, who represents Flint water customers Larry Shears and Margaret Fralick in the lawsuit.
Officials have said city water and sewer customers pay some of the highest rates in Michigan. Hayman’s decision says the price includes a 35 percent rate hike enacted in 2011 in violation of a city ordinance that required advance notice to customers and that higher prices be added over 12 months rather than all at once.
The judge also enjoined the city from collecting readiness-to-service fees until it complies with a city ordinance requiring officials to justify those charges in writing.
Water and sewer customers pay the fees, which amount to a $57.38 for a typical residential customer, as a part of their monthly water and sewer bill.
Attorney Val Washington argued for Flint residents. MLive photo
Hayman has also said the city wrongfully transferred $15.7 million in water and sewer funds in 2007 to help settle a lawsuit involving sewage overflows.
The city released a statement from City Administrator Natasha L. Henderson Monday that says officials “are carefully reviewing the judge’s order to ensure the city is compliant.”
“As always, the focus is on providing services to this community including safe and secure water that all of our families and businesses depend on,” Henderson’s statement says.
City officials have said the judge’s ruling could force Flint into bankruptcy, and Henderson issued a hiring freeze directive to department heads earlier this month in response to Hayman’s order.
VOD: why can’t U.S. District Court Judge Bernard Friedman issue the same order for Detroiters in current case before him? After U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Steven Rhodes denied Detroit plaintiffs in Lyda v. Detroit, case was appealed to District Court.
Video above: hundreds turned out for vigil for 15-year-old Andre Green
Green killed on anniversary of Michael Brown death, same day cops in Ferguson critically wounded Tyrone Harris, Jr.
Witness Allen Eaton, father say Green did nothing to threaten cops
Indy cops have few dashcam videos, no bodycams
Teen sixth person killed by Indianapolis police this year
729 dead at the hands of U.S. law enforcement in 2015
Andre Green, 15, dead at hands of Indy cops
From video in Indianapolis Star, eyewitness Allen Eaton, who was standing a short distance away:
“When the police came through here chasing the car, the car went on a dead end. The car tried to turn around. I guess he didn’t know he couldn’t get out. He turned, he bumped the police car after that. And after that the police told him get out and they just fired at him. He wasn’t trying to run down the police officers. He was trying to back up, and that’s when he bumped them back, he couldn’t go nowhere. He definitely wasn’t trying to run them down. [the other guys] jumped out and ran. They was trying to get away. Then the police just killed him. He didn’t do nothing that made them feel that he was threatening their life.”
Allen Eaton at site of Andre Green’s killing by Indianapolis police. Indianapolis Star
August 11, 2015
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The father of a 15-year-old boy fatally shot by Indianapolis police who had cornered the young carjacking suspect after a pursuit said Wednesday he believes his son posed no threat to the officers.
Andre Green’s father, Kenneth Green, said he questions the police account of his son’s fatal shooting, including the assertion that the teen was accelerating a stolen car in a possible attempt to strike officers who had cornered him near a cul-de-sac after two passengers bailed out.
Police said Monday that three officers fired on the teen Sunday night, Aug. 9, because they feared the accelerating vehicle might strike them after it had rammed a police car moments before.
Kenneth Green told The Associated Press he believes his son was just trying to get away from police, not threaten them, as he accelerated the car, which police said had been stolen Sunday at gunpoint.
Ikeila Watford, cousin of teenager Andre Green who was shot by IMPD Sunday night, sheds a tear as his aunt Chonda Watford and sister Terika Jackson mourn the loss of his life on Monument Circle during a vigil held Monday evening, August 11, 2015.(Photo: Matt Detrich/The Star)
“He wasn’t a threat. They said my son was armed, but I don’t know about that. All I want to know is the truth, what happened to my son — if he was right or wrong,” Green said while seated outside the home where his son’s mother lives on a shady, tree-lined street.
“I have a lot of pain in my heart right now. I’m just looking for answers to my questions.”
Police said Monday that the youth was holding a handgun when he exited the car after being shot and that the confrontation and shooting was not captured by any department cameras.
Green’s shooting happened the same weekend as events marking the anniversary of the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed, black 18-year-old who was fatally shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.
Assistant Police Chief Lloyd Crowe said Wednesday he believes the two white officers and a black officer acted appropriately when they opened fire on the Indianapolis youth because they feared the accelerating car could strike them.
Woman stops by memorial for Andre Green, 15, in Indianapolis alley where he was killed by police.
“I wasn’t there, obviously, but I have faith that these officers relied on their training in that instance to make a decision on the reasonable use of force, the level of force to use,” he said.
Crowe said it isn’t known yet how many shots the officers fired, how many times Andre Green was struck, or whether a handgun found near his body was the one used to fire four shots after the car was stolen from its owner about an hour before the deadly confrontation. No one was injured in that shooting.
The three officers, who are on administrative leave, will likely be interviewed later this week or early next week by members of the department’s internal affairs unit investigating the fatal shooting, Crowe said. The department’s policy is to give officers involved in fatal shootings a 72-hour cooling down period and access to counseling before such interviews occur, he said.
Crowe said it’s expected to take weeks for the internal affairs unit to complete its findings. That report would be forwarded to prosecutors to determine if the officers acted appropriately or if any of them could face charges, he said.
“A lot of us have questions we want answers to, but they’re just not available at this point,” he said. Crowe added that the three officers are emotional and shaken up by the shooting, which he called “a tragic, tragic event for everybody involved.”
Green said his son, who pleaded guilty in May to juvenile charges of auto theft and criminal mischief stemming from the March theft of a car from an Indianapolis church, had some run-ins with the law but was “a wonderful son.”
“Just because he had a court record doesn’t make him a bad person. Plenty of people make mistakes,” he said.
Protesters at Wayne County Treasurer June 8, 2015.
Alonzo Long, Jr.
PACK THE COURT!
SUPPORT ALONZO LONG, JR.
Friday, August 14, 2015 @9am
Frank Murphy Hall of Justice Rm. #604
(St. Antoine at Gratiot)
Long defended his family members from illegal armed eviction by tax foreclosure bidders in 2014
Young man’s first trial ended with hung jury
The first trial of Alonzo Long, Jr., 22, charged with two counts of felony murder as well as first-degree murder, ended in a hung jury. This is good news. A preliminary exam, a prelude to a second trial, is scheduled for Friday, August 14.
Long’s family and friends have asked for our support by attending the hearing. The hearing will take place on Friday, August 14, at 9 am, in room 604 of the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice. The Frank Murphy Hall of Justice is located at Saint Antoine St. and Gratiot Ave.
Rosedale Park home on Piedmont where shootings took place Nov. 28, 2014.
Last November 28, Alonzo Long, Jr., was helping his uncle move out of a home in Rosedale Park that the family lost in the fall 2014 tax foreclosure auction. The purchasers of the home, Howard L. Franklin and his daughter Catherine Franklin, arrived and accused Long and his relatives of stealing window blinds and a chandelier from the property.
The Franklins called the police. The police arrived and observed that the previous owners were vacating the property and ordered the Franklins to leave and allow the move-out to proceed with any more hinderance and harassment. But that evening, the Franklins arrived at the home again.
It was dark both inside and outside of the home. The electric and gas service to the home had already been terminated. The Franklins arrived armed. Long was also armed. All three people had permits to carry a concealed pistol. According to witnesses, the Franklins shot a young woman family member first. Relatives called Long to come into the house for defense. A shootout occurred and tragically ended with the deaths of the Franklins.
MASS PROTEST VS. ILLEGAL TAX FORECLOSURES AT WAYNE CO. TREASURER OFFICE JUNE 8, 2015.
According to the Voice of Detroit,
Howard Franklin did not follow the law by first going to 36th District Court’s landlord-tenant division and filing for eviction, a mandatory process with notice to occupants that, if successful, is carried out only by Wayne County bailiffs. The Franklins had no right even to enter the premises without permission of the occupants, according to the treasurer’s bidding requirements.
The tragic deaths of the Franklins are the direct consequence of the mass tax foreclosures initiated by Wayne County Treasurer Raymond Wojtowicz and supported by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan.
Racketeering partners Detroit un-Mayor Mike Duggan, billionaire Dan Gilbert. Gilbert heads Detroit Blight Removal Task Force despite USDOJ charges of predatory lending, illegal foreclosures brought against his company, Quicken Loans.
The Detroit tax foreclosures have actually been illegal for the last 20 years, during which the City of Detroit did not perform annual property evaluations as required by state law.
They also could have been resolved by using federal “Hardest Hit Funds” to keep homeowners in their homes. In November 2014, approximately $250 million was still available to assist homeowners keep their homes.
Instead, Mayor Mike Duggan, subprime lender Dan Gilbert, Governor Rick Snyder, and other elected misleaders, successfully lobbied the Federal government to allow the Hardest Hit Funds to be used to tear down blighted structures!
Had the funds been used to pay for property tax delinquencies and keep people in their homes, the City of Detroit, the Wayne County Treasury, the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, and the Detroit Public Schools would have also benefited.
Facebook: Pack the Court! Support Alonzo Long, Jr.
Video above: Ferguson shooting of man [Tyrone Harris, Jr.] and arrest of videographer recording crime scene –posted by Photography is not a Crime
Harris family denies he had a gun; why were plainclothes police tailing this friend of Mike Brown’s? Who shot into crowd at store first?
Ferguson 15-year-old says he would fire at police: “I wouldn’t want to do it but I would to save my life.”
By Richard B. Muhammad and J.A. Salaam –Final Call Staffers
Updated Aug 11, 2015 – 4:41:39 PM
(Photos, captions and videos inserted by Voice of Detroit.)
Tyrone Harris Jr. who is fighting for his life. His family denies he was armed; girlfriend who was with him said he was running toward her car, which was parked near plainclothes police car. Police said they had been tailing him all day. Was he targeted by police as friend of Michael Brown? Who started the barrage of shots outside the store–protesters or police? Why were plainclothes police involved in the first place?
FERGUSON, Mo. (FinalCall.com) – The image of a young Black male, bloodied, handcuffed facedown and surrounded by police officers was perhaps the ultimate illustration of how little has changed a year after 18-year-old Mike Brown, Jr., was shot to death here by a White police officer.
A state of emergency was imposed Aug. 10 as Tyrone Harris, Jr., fought for his life at Final Call press time. According to the St. Louis County Police Dept. the 18-year-old was involved in a gunfight with others on West Florissant Avenue, fled his enemies but turned his weapon on plainclothes officers responding to the gunplay.
The emergency declaration did little to keep people off of streets, it initiated a nightly cycle of confrontation well-established a year ago. Aggressive policing, tear gas and what demonstrators see as intimidation only breed a counter refusal to back down or kowtow to authorities.
Some 2,000 protestors showed up the night of Aug. 10 and appeared to outnumber police officers, who remained in full riot gear and quickly moved against anyone who tried to block traffic.
“It’s like the police have learned nothing. The state of emergency is the result of county government’s unwillingness to control the police and authorities, who used excessive force on a crowd that was retreating as instructed,” said Montague Simmons, executive director of the Organization for Black Struggle. “Once again, police disregarded the rules of engagement. (County executive Steve Stenger) has shown no interest in engaging in dialogue or changes.”
Gwen Drisdel, Tyrone Harris, Jr’s grandmother, shows his high school diploma to St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter. She told him, “I don’t believe he would disrespect police like that. There was a lot of confusion, and it was very dark. . . .I know his girlfriend said he was running from the shooting toward her car, and where the plainclothesmen were. He was running from the bullets; I’m not even sure he knew he was encountering police.”
“The Organization for Black Struggle supports the pursuit of justice through nonviolent civil disobedience as displayed by Moral Monday sit-in participants today. Based on St. Louis County Commissioner Stenger’s stated criteria for declaring a state of emergency, the St. Louis metro area should always be under a state of emergency because of the constant potential for harm to Black people and relentless attempts to silence those who work toward justice,” Mr. Simmons added.
“In light of last night’s violence and unrest in the City of Ferguson, and the potential for harm to persons and property, I am exercising my authority as county executive to issue a state of emergency, effective immediately,” Mr. Stenger announced referring to 50-60 gunshots that rang out the early morning of Aug. 10. St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said shots were fired at an unmarked police vehicle and with bullets piercing a window and the front of the SUV.
Mr. Harris, Jr., is accused of firing those shots.
He faces 10 felony charges, five counts of armed criminal action, four counts of first-degree assault on a law enforcement officer and a firearms charge. He was in critical condition after surgery and family members complained they were given no information and were not given a chance to see him.
St. Louis Alderman Antonio French. He disparaged looters as opportunists. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said rebellions are “the voice of the unheard.” There have been looters in every major rebellion in the U.S. They are poor people re-distributing the wealth that is not available to them, unlike Alderman French, who evidently has no need to do so–VOD
The shots rang out in the wee hours of Aug. 10 as protestors confronted a line of officers dressed in riot gear across Ferguson Avenue and West Florissant Avenue as officers essentially had protestors surrounded.
“Opportunists,” in the words of Alderman Antonio French of St. Louis, tried to break into some businesses. Shots rang out as he and others tried to prevent any looting.
Malik Shabazz of Black Lawyers for Justice, who was back in town to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the rebellion and killing of Mike Brown, Jr., saw a confrontation between two groups and then heard gunshots. It looked like a dispute as a teenager broke into a store and others tried to take the stolen items, he said.
As Mr. Shabazz ducked for cover, he couldn’t tell who was doing the shooting, but heard something striking the street.
Panic set in as shots were fired. People ran, snatching up baby strollers and children. Others ducked behind cars or any available barrier. Police said shots were also fired on a lot in front of a market. They ordered people away from their lines.
Protesters face off against police on West Florissant, where Michael Brown died. FC photo
A short time after people cleared out, social media exploded with tweets and photos saying someone had been shot, possibly killed. People returned to the area, angry, frustrated and fed up. There was shouting, some items thrown at police, then smoke bombs and what protestors called tear gas.
The county executive declared enough is enough: “The recent acts of violence will not be tolerated in a community that has worked so tirelessly over the last year to rebuild and become stronger.” He turned law enforcement authority and police emergency management for Ferguson and surrounding areas into the hands of Chief Belmar.
An active and peaceful weekend gave way to angst, protest and civil disobedience as protestors shutdown several highways, were arrested sitting-in at the St. Louis federal building and took to the streets. “Justice Department do your job!” they chanted outside of the federal court building.
Cornel West (third from l) and others engage in civil disobedience outside federal courthouse in St. Louis. West and others were later arrested. FC photo
Pastor Cori Bush questioned whether the state of emergency was to protect people or property. None of the three people shot last night were mentioned by the county executive, she said. She also saw the declaration as an excuse for officers to escalate conflict.
Things were peaceful when police didn’t come out, then it progressed from talking with officers, to reinforcements quickly filing in, to two tanks, and riot gear wearing officers in an L-shaped formation moving forward, pushing people for no reason, said Pastor Bush. She came out to West Florissant Avenue after hearing someone had been shot.
“All we wanted to know was what was going on,” Pastor Bush said. Some people were maced in the face, mace hit the back of her head and then people went crazy, she said. There had to be 300 officers on the scene, said Pastor Bush.
No peace until police shootings stop
Pastor Cori Bush (l) during protests. From Twitter.
Police and politicians aren’t the only ones who are fed up, said Pastor Bush. “Ferguson will take more of this until they stop shooting us. What do they expect? What day on the calendar can they pinpoint and say ‘we are not going to shoot you?’ We came out here for justice and if we wanted to turn back we would have done it months ago,” said the woman who described herself as “Miss Ferguson Frontline.”
“After a year of protests and conversation around police accountability, having plainclothes officers without cameras or proper identification in the protest setting leaves us with only the officer’s account of the incident, which is problematic,” observed Kayla Reed of the Organization for Black Struggle.
Family members of the accused shooter insisted he did not have a weapon and was trying to get away from shooters when officers fired on him.
Anthony Shahid. Twitter photo Richard Muhammad
“The people are more fed up than the police and the politicians because the politicians have put things in place that is business as usual,” said activist Anthony Shahid, who has been engaged in protests and supporting the father of Mike Brown, Jr. over the past year.
The police are disconnected from Blacks and with “this Darren Wilson mindset are shooting us straight down and our people are tired of it. Young people just are not going to take it,” he said.
He called for four and half days of civil disobedience and shutting down anything and everything—highways, bus stations, convention centers, federal banks, tourist attractions. “I am saying close them down because White folk don’t understand nothing but money,” said Mr. Shahid.
“It’s not going to get better,” he said. They are shooting Black folk like animals but even the animals have more rights than Blacks do, added the activist. Animal rights groups will defend the well-being of animals but no one cares about Black suffering, said Mr. Shahid.
“I don’t see Black police shooting White boys like that,” he continued. So long as cops, politicians, prosecutors and police unions collude to protect all officers, the unrest is not going to die down, Mr. Shahid predicted.
“I see the volcano getting ready to erupt,” he said.
Tyrone Harris, Jr., 18, who his father says was “very close” to Michael Brown, 18, lies critically wounded by cops on ground one year to the day after Brown’s death, Aug. 9, 2015. The photo is eerily similar to that of Michael Brown as he lay dead on ground after being shot 8 times by cop Darren Wilson.
Police claim Tyrone Harris, Jr., 18, in critical condition, shot at them
Harris charged with attack on law enforcement, bond $250,000, remains in hospital
Cops in riot gear, military formation launch attack on marchers
New round of rallies planned for Mon. Aug. 10, after Harris shooting
State of emergency declared in Ferguson
Mainstream media, police chief call violence the work of “criminals.” ignore ongoing war by U.S. law enforcement that has taken lives of at least 706 in 2015 to date, 8 in Ferguson itself, and continuing unemployment, mass incarceration of Black, Latin and poor youth
August 10, 2015
Michael Brown, 18, lies unarmed and dead in street Aug. 9, 2014, killed by cop Darren Wilson.
The person shot in Ferguson by a police officer after a day of commemorating the first anniversary of Michael Brown’s death has been identified by his father as 18-year-old Tyrone Harris Jr., of St. Louis, who was “real close” to Brown, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
“We think there’s a lot more to this than what’s being said,” Harris Sr. said, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, adding that his son had graduated from Normandy High School. Harris Sr. also added that his son had just come out of surgery early on Monday.
Jon Belmar, the head of St. Louis County police, said that a man opened fire on plainclothes detectives on Sunday evening. He was then pursued and shot by officers. The police chief did not identify the suspect, but said he was in a “critical” and “unstable” condition in hospital and undergoing surgery.
Belmar added that the suspect had been tracked throughout the protest as police believed he was armed. Officers allege the suspect approached the detectives who were sitting in a van and opened fire with a 9mm gun that had been stolen last year.
Michael Brown, Sr. heads off protest Aug. 9, 2015.
The officers have all been placed on administrative leave, in keeping with standard practice after police-involved shootings. Belmar said none of the officers, who have between six and 12 years’ experience, was seriously injured.
Andre Anderson, the acting head of Ferguson’s Police Department, added that several people were detained during the protests, but did not specify how many had been arrested.
The gunfire occurred as Anderson was speaking to CNN about how the police, “just wanted to be as patient as possible.” As he talked, some 20 shots could clearly be heard in the background. The clip of the incident showed the police chief was shocked, as he looked away in awe when the shooting began.
The head of St. Louis County police also told a news conference on Monday morning that a second shooting had occurred in Ferguson. The incident reportedly involved two groups of people on the west side of West Florissant Avenue. It happened just before police shot Harris Jr.
Crowds mass in streets of Ferguson to remember Michael Brown and all victims of police, 706 so far in 2015 alone.
Belmar added that 40 and 50 shots were fired in an exchange between the two groups, and the incident he described as “remarkable” lasted around 45 seconds. “They were criminals. They weren’t protesters,” Belmar said of those involved in the shootings. He did not say if there were any casualties from the shooting on West Florissant Avenue.
Cops manned large variety of military vehicles during protest.
Eighteen-year-old Michael Brown was killed by Police Officer Darren Wilson on August 9, 2014. He was walking through a St. Louis suburb when he became involved in an altercation with the officer. Wilson fired approximately 12 shots from his department-issued handgun. At least eight of them struck the teen’s body and two were fired at his head, despite the fact that Brown was unarmed.
A grand jury and the US Department of Justice refused to prosecute Wilson, which led to riots in Ferguson and across the US, with protesters angered in their belief that justice had not been served.
COPS SHOOT ‘SUSPECT’ DURING FERGUSON PROTEST
By Jim Salter and Jim Suhr
August 10, 2015
Ferguson, Mo. — A suspect who authorities say opened fire on officers in Ferguson, Missouri, on the anniversary of Michael Brown’s death was critically wounded when the officers shot back, St. Louis County’s police chief said early Monday.
Woman collapses after hearing of shooting of Tyrone Harris, Jr.
It wasn’t immediately clear if the latest police-involved shooting would spur renewed unrest in Ferguson, the site of many protests — some violent — in the aftermath of Brown’s death on Aug. 9, 2014. Protest groups were quick to criticize the police response to protesters who gathered along West Florissant Avenue on Sunday night.
St. Louis County Chief Jon Belmar said at a news conference that officers had been tracking the suspect, who they believed was armed, during a protest marking the death of Brown, the black, unarmed 18-year-old whose killing by a white Ferguson police officer touched off a national “Black Lives Matter” movement.
At the height of what was already a rowdy protest in which rocks and bottles were thrown at officers, gunshots rang out from the area near a strip of stores, including some that had been looted. Belmar believes the shots came from about six different shooters. What prompted the shooting wasn’t clear, but Belmar said the groups had been feuding.
At one point, the suspect crossed the street and apparently spotted the plainclothes officers arriving in an unmarked van with distinctive red and blue police lights, Belmar said. He said the suspect shot into the hood and windshield.
The officers fired back at him from inside the vehicle then pursued him on foot when he ran.
Cops in riot gear, military formation, a repeat of their actions during protests after Michael Brown’s death in 2014.
The suspect again fired on the officers when he became trapped in a fenced-in area, the chief said, and all four officers fired back. He was struck and fell.
The suspect was taken to a hospital, where Belmar said he was in “critical, unstable” condition. Authorities didn’t immediately release the identities of anyone involved, but Tyrone Harris told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the injured suspect was his son, 18-year-old Tyrone Harris Jr.
The elder Harris told the newspaper shortly after 3 a.m. that his son had just gotten out of surgery.
None of the officers was seriously injured. All four have been put on standard administrative leave. They were not wearing body cameras, Belmar said.
Below: Protesters in Ferguson Aug. 7, 2015 explain their rage.
The shooting happened shortly after a separate incident that the chief called “an exchange of gunfire between two groups” rang out around 11:15 p.m. Sunday while protesters were gathered on West Florissant Avenue, a business zone that saw rioting and looting last year after Brown’s killing. The shots sent protesters and reporters running for cover.
The chief said an estimated six shooters unleashed a “remarkable” amount of gunfire over about 45 seconds.
Woman after being tear-gassed by police during Ferguson anniversary protest.
Belmar waved off any notion that the people with the weapons were part of the protest.
“They were criminals. They weren’t protesters,” he said.
The suspect who fired on officers had a semi-automatic 9 mm gun that was stolen last year from Cape Girardeau, Missouri, according to the chief.
“There is a small group of people out there that are intent on making sure that peace doesn’t prevail,” he said. “There are a lot of emotions. I get it. But we can’t sustain this as we move forward.”
Some protest groups were critical of police.
Kayla Reed, of the Organization for Black Struggle
“It was a poor decision to use plainclothes officers in a protest setting because it made it difficult for people to identify police officers, which is essential to the safety of community members,” Kayla Reed, a field organizer with the Organization of Black Struggle, said in a statement.
“After a year of protest and conversation around police accountability, having plainclothes officers without body cameras and proper identification in the protest setting leaves us with only the officer’s account of the incident, which is clearly problematic.”
Early Monday, another reported shooting drew officers to an apartment building in the area. Two males told police they were targeted in a drive-by shooting near the memorial to Brown outside Canfield Apartments. A 17-year-old was shot in the chest and shoulder while a 19-year-old was shot in the chest, but their injuries were not life-threatening, the St. Louis County Police said in a news release.
St. Louis County police, taking cover, were part of large contingent called to Ferguson.
Separately, police said a 17-year-old suspect has been charged with unlawful use of a weapon and one count of resisting arrest after he fired shots near the protesters late Sunday. He is being held on $100,000 bond.
The anniversary of Brown’s killing, which cast greater scrutiny on how police interact with black communities, has sparked days of renewed protests, though until Sunday they had been peaceful and without any arrests.
Before the gunfire, protesters were blocking traffic and confronting police. One person threw a glass bottle at officers but missed.
For the first time in three consecutive nights of demonstrations, some officers were dressed in riot gear, including bullet-proof vests and helmets with shields. Police at one point early Monday shot smoke to disperse the crowd that lingered on West Florissant, Belmar said.
One officer was treated for cuts after a rock was thrown at his face, and two officers were pepper-sprayed by protesters, county police spokesman Officer Shawn McGuire said in an email. Five people were arrested, according to records McGuire released.
Several other peaceful events earlier Sunday were held to mark the anniversary.
Brown’s father, Michael Brown Sr., led a march through town. It started at the site where Brown was fatally shot by officer Darren Wilson. A grand jury and the U.S. Department of Justice declined to prosecute Wilson, who resigned in November.
Later, a few hundred people turned out at Greater St. Mark Family Church for a service to remember Brown, with his father joining other relatives sitting behind the pulpit.
Organizers of some of the weekend activities pledged a day of civil disobedience on Monday, but have not offered specific details.
Above: Detroit teachers and students rally in Lansing June 6, 2015
By Steve Conn, Pres. Detroit Federation of Teachers
August 9, 2015
Steve Conn (2nd from r) and other DFT board members take oath of office Jan. 20, 2015.
I joined the other leaders of the Coalition of Unions in a meeting [Thurs. August 6] with DPS officials about the Emergency Manager’s plans for devastating health care cuts. It would be impossible to overstate the importance of this issue, and as with all union negotiations, I am duty bound to report to the membership.
DPS began the meeting by introducing a modification of their health care cuts plan that would allow employees the option of avoiding most of the huge deductibles, although only by paying a much larger share of the premium costs in our paychecks.
The Coalition reiterated its position that “all proposed health care cuts must be rescinded,” as stated in a July 31 op-ed column in the Detroit News. (See below.)
Certainly, we have a long way to go before we can say we have won this fight. But it cannot be denied that this DPS modified plan is some improvement. What caused the EM’s modification? The only explanation is that Mr. Darnell Earley is reacting to the new fighting activism of the DFT in the past several months: pickets, rallies, grievances, unfair labor practice charges at MERC, and our visits to Lansing.
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder announces appointment of Darnell Earley as new DPS Emergency Manager.
The EM is also continually reminded that the DFT does not fight alone. BAMN, the Operating Engineers Union, and other groups and individuals are always there with us. Our public activism has exposed how the health care cuts and other attacks by the governor are driving teachers out of the district, thus further crippling education in Detroit. Our protests have made it ever clearer how the people of Detroit stand with the DFT, and how isolated Mr. Earley, the governor’s handpicked agent, really is.
Some of our most active DFT members are continuing the work this summer by getting hundreds of Detroiters to sign petitions against health care cuts and school reconstitution, and for teacher placement. That petition is still available below. We also have several more court cases and court hearings scheduled before school begins that members can sit in on. In the fall, we must especially concentrate on building the size of our marches and rallies by increasing the membership participation from every school. Only when the fighting spirit spreads throughout the entire union membership will we be able to achieve our objective of stopping all the cuts, and beginning to win new gains, such as a pay raise.
Students, parents and teachers commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday in 2011, marching from MLK High School.
As Dr. King put it so well in his Letter from Birmingham City Jail, “So the purpose of direct action is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation.” We certainly have a long way to go. But we should celebrate the fact that we have started down the right road. If we continue in this way, I am completely confident of victory in this and every other fight our union enters into in the struggle to defend public education in Detroit.
By RubyNewbold, Pres. Detroit Assn. of Educational Employees, AFT 4168, Chair of Coalition of DPS Unions
July 31, 2015
Ruby Newbold, Pres. Coalition of DPS Unions
Detroit Public Schools Employee A has two children. One has asthma and the other has extreme migraine headaches. The child with headaches has to see a neurologist twice a month. Mom also sees a neurologist for headaches. With the new health care plan proposed by the Emergency Manager (EM) the employee would have to pay $60 for each time she and her child see the neurologist. All costs for tests must be paid by the employee until she meets the proposed deductible of $6,000. This employee makes $24,000 a year.
Employee B was diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this month. She started her treatments two weeks ago. Under the health care plan proposed by the EM, her deductible is $3,000 and her cost to visit her doctor increases to $60 a visit. This employee makes $22,000 a year.
Before you respond that everyone has to sacrifice when times are tough, please remember: These employees have sacrificed for over a decade. They haven’t had a wage increase since 2002, they took a 10 percent wage cut in 2011 and have forgone step increases. They have been burdened with increasing health care costs with decreasing benefits, currently pay over 20 percent of premium cost, have lost assault pay when they’re victims of assault at school and more.
DFT teachers walked out en masse for one day in 2001, under leadership of then Pres. Janna Garrison, rallied in Lansing, and succeeded in blocking pro-charter schools bill. Fourteen years later, the district is a shell of its former self, with hundreds of schools closed, thousands of teachers and other DPS workers laid off.
DFT Executive Vice President Ivy Bailey has stressed, on top of all of these concessions, teachers have larger classes, no oversize-class pay, and have lost three hours a week of preparation time, as well as their national board certification bonus and tuition reimbursement. Moreover, in 2010 and 2011 they helped DPS with cash flow problems by lending them approximately $54 million by delaying receiving a portion of wages until they leave the district.
So I ask, how do we retain the best and the brightest to educate and serve our children?
The DPS minimum pay for a teacher with a bachelors degree is $35,683. The maximum for a teacher with a masters is $65,265. Now consider the Chippewa Valley, Plymouth-Canton and Waterford school districts, all receiving a lower foundation allowance per student than DPS. Chippewa Valley’s range is $38,064 to $85,873. Plymouth-Canton’s is $39,954 to $79,473 and Waterford’s is $37,200 to $75,302.
Hundreds marched in downtown Detroit May 9, 2012, demanding cancellation of Detroit and DPS debt to the banks.
Why would a teacher work in Detroit if she can make more money with better benefits in virtually every other school district in Metro Detroit? DPS teachers and staff care deeply about their students, but they also care deeply about their families and their well-being.
It’s no wonder DPS already has a teacher shortage, one that will undoubtedly grow this coming school year, especially if the proposed health care cuts are implemented. There are $3 million in proposed cuts this coming year and $6 million the next. What is the cost of these cuts, the cost of a teacher shortage to our children, the cost of losing teachers and staff to other districts or careers?
These proposed cuts come just as our community has come together in support of a plan to save and enhance DPS. Just when the state is giving serious consideration to paying the DPS operating debt developed under state appointed school boards and EMs.
The EM has responded to our request for health care and financial information for us to analyze. We are all for saving DPS money, but not on the backs of the employees who educate our children or support those who do, and not in a manner that will do harm to DPS. The examples at the beginning of this piece are just two stories of many detailing what these proposed health care cuts would mean not only for teachers and staff, but for the district.
We call for all proposed health care cuts to be rescinded. We call on heath care providers to do their part in rebuilding DPS by allowing the district to save a portion of their desired $6 million without reducing benefits and increasing employee costs yet again.
If we value our children, we should value the women and men who educate them.
Ruby Newbold is chair of the Coalition of DPS Unions and President of the Detroit Association of Educational Employees, AFT 4168.
Christian Taylor, 19, from @ChristianTaylor, college student, football player, dead at hands of Texas police
“He was a good kid. I don’t see him stealing no car or nothing like that.” -Great-uncle Clyde Fuller
“Heart is hurting”–Will Wagner @coachwillwagner
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Christian Taylor. Your presence will be missed but not forgotten.”–#Ramfam, ASU Ram Football @ASURamFootball (Angelo State University)
Killed by Arlington police trainee Brad Smith
By Stephen A. Crockett Jr.
August 8, 2015
Arlington, Texas — Police fatally shot a 19-year-old Angelo State University college student and football player, that they claim broke into a car dealership early Friday morning. But some members of the dead man’s family find the police version of the story hard to believe.
According to the Star-Telegram, around 1 a.m. police were notified of a burglary in progress at a GMC Classic Buick dealership. Police claim that a security company dialed in emergency help after they witnessed the suspect using his car to crash through the dealership’s showroom window.
Arlington, TX police officer trainee Brad Miller
“The officers went and confronted him. There was an altercation. An officer discharged his weapon and struck the suspect,” Rodriguez told the Star-Telegram.
The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office identified him Friday afternoon as 19-year-old Christian Taylor. Taylor was a sophomore at Angelo State University and a member of the football team. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Rodriguez added that Taylor was unarmed when he was shot.
Police identified the officer involved in the shooting as 49-year-old Brad Miller, a recent graduate of the academy, who was working under the supervision of a training officer at the time of the shooting. Miller has been placed on administrative leave.
“We’re having two independent investigations — a criminal and administrative,” Rodriguez said. “As an agency, we take the loss of any human life as serious, but we owe it to our community to conduct a clear and transparent investigation to determine what exactly took place.”
Christian Taylor (in blue jersey) playing football in 2013. The same year, he tweeted, “I don’t wanna die too youngggg” @he_got_sneaks
Clyde Fuller, Taylor’s great uncle, told the Star-Telegram that the story that is being described doesn’t add up. He said his great nephew was set to return to college and that he excelled at football.
“He was a good kid. I don’t see him stealing no car or nothing like that,” Fuller said.
“I think something is going on that somebody is lying about,” Fuller told the Star-Telegram. “…They say he’s burglarizing the place by running up in there? Nuh-uh. Something doesn’t sound right.”
Rodriguez told the newspaper that the officers are in the process of receiving body cameras but they don’t have them yet and as such, officer Miller was not wearing one during the shooting.
He added that there are several security cameras in the dealership but they haven’t found footage that shows the incident clearly.
“We are looking at all available video from outside and inside the location to obtain as much information as possible,” Rodriguez said.
One of thousands of protests against police murders of Black, Latin and poor youth across the U.S. According to the website, killedbypolice.net, law enforcement in the U.S. has killed 704 people this year alone.