Protests 2020

Dr. Seuss Enterprises will cease publishing six of the author's books — including And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street and If I Ran the Zoo — saying they "portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong." The books have been criticized for how they depict Asian and Black people.

Back when school was in person, Josh Secrett was always tired.

"I used to come home and just lay down and go to sleep for like hours," the eighth-grader says. "Wake up for dinner, go to bed."

Josh's mom, Sharnissa Secrett, says teachers at his Portland, Ore., school would sometimes discipline Josh for small things, like talking when he wasn't supposed to. Those interactions would hang over him the rest of the day.

"You look in my baby's eyes, when he used to come home, he was tired...mentally tired," she says.

The WNBA franchise the Atlanta Dream, which had been co-owned by former U.S. Sen. Kelley Loeffler of Georgia, has been sold, the league announced Friday afternoon.

The three-member investor group which purchased the team includes former Dream player Renee Montgomery, making her the first retired player to become both an owner and a WNBA executive.

The other owners are Larry Gottesdiener and Suzanne Abair, two executives from the Massachusetts-based real estate firm Northland Investment Corp.

The Cherokee Nation's Supreme Court ruled this week to remove the words "by blood" from its constitution and other legal doctrines.

The words, added to the constitution in 2007, have been used to exclude Black people whose ancestors were enslaved by the tribe from obtaining full Cherokee Nation citizenship rights.

Seeking to correct an injustice from more than a century ago, the Los Angeles Police Commission voted to posthumously reinstate and honor one of LAPD's first Black police officers.

Robert Stewart spent 11 years on the force before he was unjustly fired, the commission said.

The five-member police commission voted unanimously to reinstate Stewart, Richard Tefank, the executive director of the commission, told NPR.

Updated at 6:45 p.m. ET

New York Attorney General Letitia James says a grand jury voted that no charges will be filed against Rochester police officers in connection with the March 2020 death of Daniel Prude, a Black man who was in the midst of a mental health free fall during his encounter with the police.

A report released Tuesday found that 168 Confederate symbols were removed across the United States in 2020, virtually all of them following the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers. Only one of the symbols was removed prior to Floyd's death, when Virginia renamed Lee-Jackson Day in April as Election Day.

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

The mother of Ahmaud Arbery, the 25-year-old Black man who was chased and gunned down by a group of white men in Glynn County, Ga., while jogging, has filed a multimillion-dollar civil lawsuit against several people involved in the killing or the subsequent investigation.

They were hailed as the first Black students to integrate public schools in Tennessee, in 1955. But until recently, the brave acts of the students, known as the Oak Ridge 85, were relatively forgotten. That started to change last year – and now the local school board is moving to add the history of the Oak Ridge 85 to its classrooms' curriculum.

Updated at 9:35 p.m. ET

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a bill Monday that makes Illinois the first state in the country to abolish cash bail payments for jail release for people who have been arrested and are waiting for their case to be heard.

Chicago police showed "confusion and lack of coordination" in their response to last summer's protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, according to a new watchdog report, which said officers frequently did not understand who was in charge or how to handle sometimes violent demonstrators.

Amy Cooper, a white dog owner who was at the center of a controversial encounter with a Black man bird-watching in New York's Central Park last year, had her misdemeanor charge stemming from that incident dropped on Tuesday.

The woman had been facing a charge of falsely reporting an incident to police after she told them Christian Cooper, who is not related to her, threatened her and her dog. He did not.

Editor's note: This story contains descriptions that may be offensive.

Objects from the past fill every corner of the Farmers Co-op Antiques Mall in central Oregon: decoy ducks nested among the rusty typewriters, musky clothes and toys made for children who grew old long ago.

The floorboards creak as customers wander this maze of booths. A couple of months ago, one glass display case looked a lot like dozens of others full of knickknacks. But something inside the well-lit case made 15-year-old Lily Gallentine do a double take.

Erie County, N.Y., district attorney John Flynn said Thursday that a grand jury proceeding has cleared two police officers accused of assaulting a 75-year-old protester last summer.

The incident occurred in Buffalo on June 4 during a Black Lives Matter demonstration.

A Wisconsin judge has refused to issue a new arrest warrant for Kyle Rittenhouse, the 18-year-old charged with killing two people in Kenosha, Wis., during protests last summer.

Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder also refused to increase Rittenhouse's bail.

Stacey Plaskett made history on the Senate floor Wednesday when she became the first nonvoting delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives to serve as an impeachment manager.

Plaskett represents the U.S. Virgin Islands, which as a territory does not have a vote in Congress. She is in the unique position of arguing the case to convict former President Donald Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol but having been barred from voting to impeach him in the chamber she serves.

Three former Aurora, Colo., police officers have lost a bid to get their jobs back after being fired in connection to posed photos reenacting a chokehold near the site where Elijah McClain was pinned down by police.

The city's Civil Service Commission upheld the firings of Officers Erica Marrero, Kyle Dittrich and Jason Rosenblatt. A fourth officer resigned before the others were kicked out of the department.

A judge has barred Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón from implementing a significant piece of his criminal justice reforms, ruling the progressive's policy to end sentencing enhancements in criminal cases is unlawful.

Fired Columbus Police officer Adam Coy has pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges in the December killing of Andre Hill. His bond was set at $3 million.

Coy was arrested and indicted by a grand jury Wednesday on two counts of dereliction of duty, which are second-degree misdemeanors, and one count each of felonious assault and murder. If convicted, the charges carry a maximum sentence of life in prison.

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Citizen panels in Wauwatosa have taken the first steps toward hiring a new police chief in the city. Controversial longtime Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber announced this week that he'll retire in June.

Thursday night, the Wauwatosa Police and Fire Commission voted to hire a consultant to help them with the hiring process to replace Weber.

The consultant is the Washington D.C.-based Center for Public Safety Management. Center Director Leonard Matarese said finding candidates will be harder than it used to be.

The mother of the 9-year-old girl who was handcuffed and pepper sprayed by police in Rochester, N.Y., last week said she was never informed by law enforcement that a chemical irritant was used on her daughter.

In addition, she allegedly told officers she feared her daughter may be experiencing a mental health crisis and requested trained personnel to assist. But that request was denied.

Courtesy of Amaud Jamaul Johnson

George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police set off a firestorm of protest around the country and world. But it certainly wasn’t the first instance of police brutality met with outcry.

Amaud Jamaul Johnson is a poet and professor at UW-Madison and director of the MFA program in creative writing. He has been reflecting on the racial justice uprising of his youth, sparked by the acquittal of police in the brutal beating of Rodney King in Los Angeles.

New York state lawmakers have introduced legislation that bans law enforcement officers from using chemical irritants on minors.

It was a quick response to Rochester Police pepper-spraying a handcuffed 9-year-old girl as officers were responding to a call of a family disturbance last week. Video of the girl's encounter with police was released by city officials, sparking protests in the city Monday evening.

Updated at 5:23 p.m. ET

Rochester, N.Y., police officers involved in restraining and pepper-spraying a 9-year-old girl last Friday were suspended Monday by order of Mayor Lovely Warren "at a minimum" until the conclusion of an internal police investigation.

"Unfortunately, state law and union contract prevents me from taking more immediate and serious action," Warren said in a statement.

The suspensions came after city officials released police body-camera footage showing the encounter between officers and the girl.

In one of her first moves as the newly elected Fulton County district attorney, Fani Willis is asking for another prosecutor to take over a controversial felony murder case.

Willis sent a letter on Wednesday to Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr asking that he transfer the felony murder case against former Atlanta Police Officer Garrett Rolfe, who shot and killed Rayshard Brooks in June. Rolfe is white and Brooks was Black.

Joseph Mensah, who quit his job as a police officer in Wauwatosa, Wis., after shooting and killing three people in the line of duty over a five-year period, has a new job as a sheriff's deputy. Sheriff Eric Severson of neighboring Waukesha County says multiple authorities concluded Mensah's controversial use of force was both legal and in line with his training.

In announcing the hire, Severson acknowledged that "some have expressed concerns about Mr. Mensah's past uses of force." But he said Mensah had gone through "an extensive, thorough and exhaustive hiring process."

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, President Biden's nominee for U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, pledged to take a tougher line against China and its push to exert influence over the multinational organization during her Senate confirmation hearing Wednesday.

"We know that China is working across the U.N. system to drive an authoritarian agenda that stands in opposition to the values of the institution," Thomas-Greenfield told lawmakers on the Senate Foreign Relations committee.

The Biden administration says the federal government needs to do a better job of acknowledging the ways that communities of color are blocked from fair and equal access to housing.

"Today the average Black family has just one-tenth the wealth of the average white family, while the gap between white and Black in home ownership is now larger than it was in 1960," Susan Rice, head of the White House Domestic Policy Council, said in a news briefing Tuesday.

The vast majority of mayors in American cities do not support sweeping changes to the funding of their police departments, and most say last year's racial justice protests were a force for good in their cities, according to a new survey of more than 100 mayors from across the U.S.

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