Ellison: No appeal to defend Minnesota abortion restrictions
Attorney General Keith Ellison said Thursday that he won't appeal a ruling that struck down most of Minnesota's restrictions on abortion as unconstitutional, saying the state has already spent enough time and money on the case and is unlikely to win an appeal anyway. Ellison, a Democrat who supports abortion rights, called his decision “in the public interest and ... the right legal decision.” Ramsey County Judge Thomas Gilligan on July 11 overturned a series of restrictions on abortion over the years, including a mandatory 24-hour waiting period and a requirement that both parents be notified before a minor can get an abortion.news.yahoo.com
Ex-cop pleads guilty to manslaughter in George Floyd killing
A former Minneapolis police officer pleaded guilty Wednesday to a state charge of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter in the killing of George Floyd. As part of the plea deal, Thomas Lane will have a count of aiding and abetting second-degree unintentional murder dismissed. Lane, along with J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao, has already been convicted on federal counts of willfully violating Floyd's rights during the May 2020 restraint that led to the Black man's death.news.yahoo.com
Police won’t be charged in shooting of Amir Locke during no-knock raid
MINNEAPOLIS – The Minneapolis police officer who fatally shot Amir Locke during a predawn, no-knock raid in February will not face charges in the killing, prosecutors announced Wednesday. They said they could not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Officer Mark Hanneman, who fatally shot Locke, had violated the state’s use-of-deadly force statute that authorizes officers to use such force. Locke was hit twice in the chest and once in the wrist and was pronounced dead at a hospital. Asked why the police had initially described Locke as a “suspect,” interim Minneapolis Police chief Amelia Huffman blamed a lack of information in the immediate aftermath of the shooting. On Tuesday, Frey implemented a new policy that he said prohibits the Minneapolis police from applying for or executing no-knock search warrants.washingtonpost.com
‘Not For Your Personal Gain’: Minnesota Professor Raised $200K In Philando Castile’s Name for Student Lunch Debt, Now She’s Ordered to Pay Back Funds She Misappropriated
A white woman who raised $200,000 in the name of Philando Castile to pay off or supplement student lunch debt in the St. Paul school […]news.yahoo.com
Democrats see political peril in replacing Minneapolis PD
As activists mobilized this summer to ask Minneapolis voters to replace their police department, one of the first prominent Democrats to slam the plan was a moderate congresswoman who doesn’t even live in the city. Angie Craig declared it “shortsighted, misguided and likely to harm the very communities that it seeks to protect." Craig's district covers a suburban-to-rural and politically divided region south of the city, but her willingness to jump into the fight next door highlights the political threat that Democrats like Craig see in the proposal.news.yahoo.com
Judge won't change 'trauma' wording in Chauvin memo
The Minnesota judge who oversaw the trial of Derek Chauvin is denying prosecutors' request to rewrite his sentencing order as it relates to the four girls who saw George Floyd’s death, saying Tuesday that they may have been emotionally traumatized but that the state failed to prove it. Attorney General Keith Ellison wrote last week that he wasn't seeking to change Chauvin's 22 1/2-year sentence, but he asked Judge Peter Cahill to modify his sentencing order to remove suggestions that the teens and young girl were not traumatized. Cahill denied that request Tuesday, saying Ellison's mischaracterization of his sentencing order and the “tone and substance” of Ellison's request necessitated a response.news.yahoo.com
Judge is asked to change 'trauma' wording in Chauvin memo
Prosecutors have asked the judge who handled former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin’s murder trial in George Floyd’s death to rewrite his sentencing order to delete suggestions that child witnesses did not suffer trauma. Attorney General Keith Ellison, in a filing released Thursday, stressed that he’s not seeking any change to Chauvin’s 22 1/2-year sentence. But he asked Judge Peter Cahill to revisit the document to remove suggestions that four girls who witnessed Floyd's death and testified at Chauvin's trial weren't traumatized by what they saw. “Discounting the trauma of the children who testified at trial — in an authoritative judicial opinion, no less — will only exacerbate the trauma they have suffered," Ellison wrote.news.yahoo.com
Ellison files request for Chauvin judge to acknowledge trauma of Black teen witnesses in memo
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison has reportedly e-filed a request in Hennepin County Court for Judge Peter A. Cahill, who presided over the Derek Chauvin trial, to add the word ‘trauma’ in his 22-page sentencing memo. A portion of the sentencing memorandum for Chauvin, the first officer charged, and now convicted, in the murder of George Floyd, is in question and centers on two pages.news.yahoo.com
AG: Woman misused funds raised in Philando Castile's name
A St. Paul professor who led a viral crowdfunding campaign to pay off student lunch debts in Philando Castile’s name spent less than half of the $200,000 she raised on the intended purpose, Minnesota’s attorney general said Thursday. The Star Tribune reported that Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison’s office filed a civil enforcement action in Ramsey County District Court against Pamela Fergus, alleging a breach of charitable trust, deceptive solicitation of charitable contributions, failure to maintain proper records and unregistered solicitation of contributions. “Philando Castile cared deeply about the children he served and the children loved Mr. Phil right back,” said Ellison, calling Castile a “hero” in his lunchroom.news.yahoo.com
Prosecutor on Wright's death case resigns, citing 'vitriol'
A prosecutor who was handling the case against a former suburban Minneapolis police officer charged in the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright resigned Monday, saying “vitriol” and “partisan politics” have made it hard to pursue justice. Imran Ali, the assistant criminal division chief at the Washington County Attorney's Office and director of the office's major crime unit, had been working on the prosecution of Kim Potter. The former Brooklyn Center officer fatally shot Wright, a 20-year-old Black motorist, on April 11. Ali and Washington County Attorney Pete Orput charged Potter with second-degree manslaughter — then faced intense pressure from activists who protested outside Orput's home and called for murder charges to be filed.news.yahoo.com
Minnesota AG's office to prosecute case in Wright's death
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced Friday that his office will lead the prosecution of a former suburban police officer who is charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of Daunte Wright. Former Brooklyn Center Officer Kim Potter, who is white, fatally shot Wright, a 20-year-old Black motorist, on April 11. Ellison said he took the case at the request of Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman, after another prosecutor — Washington County Attorney Pete Orput — gave the case back to Freeman's office.news.yahoo.com
Ex-cops in Floyd death claim witness coercion, harm of leak
Attorneys for three former Minneapolis officers awaiting trial in George Floyd's death will be in court Thursday to argue pretrial motions, including a request that prosecutors be sanctioned after media reports that Derek Chauvin had planned to plead guilty a year ago, and allegations that they haven't disclosed information about the alleged coercion of a witness. Attorneys for Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao have said they want the court to require prosecuting attorneys to submit affidavits under oath that they aren't responsible for the leak to the media. In a filing late Wednesday, Thao's attorney also alleged that the Hennepin County medical examiner was coerced to include “neck compression” in his findings — and that prosecutors knew of it.news.yahoo.com
Trial of other cops charged in Floyd's death to be broadcast
Derek Chauvin's murder trial was the first Minnesota criminal trial to be broadcast live on television. A spokesperson for the Hennepin County court system said an order from Judge Peter Cahill to allow the live broadcast will still apply to the August trial of the other three former Minneapolis officers charged in Floyd's death, Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao.news.yahoo.com
Key events since George Floyd's arrest and death
As the trial approaches for Chauvin, who is charged with murder in Floyd's death, prosecutors are putting the time Chauvin's knee was on Floyd's neck at about nine minutes. Officer Derek Chauvin uses his knee to pin Floyd's neck for about nine minutes while bystanders shout at him to stop. AdMay 31 — Walz says Attorney General Keith Ellison will lead prosecutions in Floyd's death. AdFeb. 12 — City leaders say George Floyd Square, the intersection blocked by barricades since Floyd's death, will reopen to traffic after Chauvin's trial. ___Find AP’s full coverage of the death of George Floyd: https://apnews.com/hub/death-of-george-floyd
Defense in ex-cop's trial fears impact of $27M settlement
Defense attorney Eric Nelson also raised the possibility of renewing his previously unsuccessful motion to move Derek Chauvin's trial to another city. AdMayor Jacob Frey deferred questions about the timing of the settlement to City Attorney Jim Rowader, who declined to comment. Potential jurors questioned later didn't mention hearing of the settlement, and neither attorneys nor the judge directly asked if they were aware of it. At least four potential jurors dismissed Monday said they couldn’t be impartial. Three other former officers face an August trial on charges of aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter.
Key events since George Floyd's arrest and death
As the trial approaches for Chauvin, who is charged with murder in Floyd's death, prosecutors are putting the time Chauvin's knee was on Floyd's neck at about nine minutes. Officer Derek Chauvin uses his knee to pin Floyd's neck for about nine minutes while bystanders shout at him to stop. AdMay 31 — Walz says Attorney General Keith Ellison will lead prosecutions in Floyd's death and the nationwide protests continue. Feb. 12 — City leaders say George Floyd Square, the intersection blocked by barricades since Floyd's death, will reopen to traffic after Chauvin's trial. ___Find AP’s full coverage of the death of George Floyd: https://apnews.com/hub/death-of-george-floyd
Key players in trial of ex-officer charged in Floyd's death
Jury selection begins Monday, March 8, 2021, for Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer charged with murder and manslaughter in George Floyd's death. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)MINNEAPOLIS – Jury selection begins Monday for a former Minneapolis police officer charged with murder and manslaughter in George Floyd's death. City, county and state officials are preparing for any sort of reaction that trial testimony or a verdict might elicit. AdTHE JUDGEHennepin County Judge Peter Cahill is respected and has a reputation as a no-nonsense, fair judge. AdPROSECUTIONDays after Floyd's death, Minnesota's governor announced that Attorney General Keith Ellison would take the lead on prosecuting the case.
Minnesota juvenile lifer walks free after 18 years in prison
Just hours after receiving the news, he walked out the front door of Stillwater prison into below-freezing temperatures. The AP investigation that followed sparked national outrage and gave Burrell’s family and community organizers the ammunition they needed to get Klobuchar’s attention. One had his 16-year prison sentence cut to three. He said the justice system failed his family, and media coverage and support for Burrell’s release overshadowed his sister’s death. Edwards III, Tyesha’s brother, said news of Burrell’s release is especially hard after the death of his mother last year.
The Latest: Biden: I've learned from Clinton campaign errors
WASHINGTON – The Latest on the presidential campaign (all times local):9:20 p.m.Joe Biden says he has learned from the mistakes that Hillary Clinton's campaign made four years ago in the Midwest. After her stunning loss to Donald Trump in 2016, many Democrats criticized her campaign as overconfident and too complacent. President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden are campaigning hard to win both states, where Trump scored narrow victories in 2016. The campaign announced in addition to his Monday trip to the state, Biden will campaign in Philadelphia on Sunday. The Minnesota Department of Health has linked 28 coronavirus cases to other recent Trump campaign events in the state.
Biden friend Sen. Coons to elevate faith on convention stage
FILE - In this Jan. 6, 2015, file photo, Vice President Joe Biden administers the Senate oath to Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., as Coons' wife, Annie Coons, watches during a ceremonial re-enactment swearing-in, in the Old Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington. The theme and timing of Coons speech on the pandemic-altered convention schedule underscore Democrats' interest in engaging with religious voters on the basis of shared values with Biden. For Joe, faith isnt a prop or a political tool, Coons is set to say, according to prepared remarks shared with The Associated Press ahead of time. Coons is also one of the more vocal Democrats when it comes to coaxing fellow party members to be more open about faith. When it comes to speaking for Biden about faith, though, Coons will have the most prominent forum.
More US churches sue to challenge COVID-19 restrictions
Tim Walzs executive orders requiring 6-foot social distancing and the wearing of face masks at worship services. The Thomas More Society, which specializes in litigation on religious issues, filed a lawsuit Wednesday in California Superior Court against Gov. A few churches have been openly defiant, including one in California's Ventura County which held indoor worship services Sunday despite a judges temporary restraining order. Earlier this year the U.S. Supreme Court upheld state COVID-19 restrictions on religious gatherings in a suit filed by South Bay United Pentecostal Church in Chula Vista, California. In June a federal judge blocked New York state from enforcing restrictions on indoor religious gatherings to 25% capacity when other types of gatherings were limited to 50%.
Biden snags support from prominent Muslim American officials
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)Several prominent Muslim American elected officials endorsed Joe Biden for president in a letter organized by Emgage Action ahead of an online summit that starts Monday and features the presumptive Democratic nominee. A Biden administration will move the nation forward on many of the issues we care about, it said, citing racial justice, affordable health care, climate change and immigration. The Muslim American officials also praised Bidens agenda for their communities. Other state- and local-level Muslim American officials signing onto the pro-Biden letter hail from 10 states, including Michigan a state where Alzayat said he believes there are more than 150,000 registered Muslim voters. Farooq Mitha, senior adviser for Muslim engagement with Bidens campaign, said reaching out to Muslim American voters is a priority for Biden, pointing to his own appointment as an example.
Judge rejects cameras for ex-cops' hearings in Floyd death
MINNEAPOLIS – A Minnesota judge on Friday rejected allowing cameras in the court for pretrial proceedings of four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of George Floyd. Minnesota rules allow the judge, prosecutors or defense attorneys to veto camera coverage during criminal court proceedings before a conviction. The judge will rule later on whether cameras will be allowed at trial. A defense attorney filed a motion Thursday on behalf of the ex-officers to allow recording of all pretrial and trial proceedings. Doing otherwise allows these public officials to geld the Constitution,” wrote attorney Thomas Plunkett, representing J. Kueng, one of four fired officers charged in Floyd's death.
Minnesota pardons black man in century-old lynching case
(Alex Kormann/Star Tribune via AP)A black man imprisoned in Minnesota a century ago in a case that included the infamous lynchings of three other black man for the alleged rape of a white woman received a posthumous pardon Friday, with Gov. Minnesota's pardons board voted 3-0 to pardon Max Mason, one of several traveling circus workers accused in the 1920 case. Attorney General Keith Ellison and state Supreme Court Chief Justice Lori Skjerven Gildea also voted to grant the pardon. Jackson said the posthumous pardon was justice long overdue, but that such gestures can be an initial step toward healing. “There’s a lot of forgiveness on the side of African American people, people with black and brown skin, to white contemporaries,” Jackson said.
For Ellison, Floyd case brings pressure -- and opportunity
Doing so is giving Ellison a national platform to talk about race in America. Ellison, the first African American elected to his job, is now tasked with nothing less than making that system work. “What we need is accountability from a top lawyer like Keith Ellison to put these cops in jail. If Ellison’s national reputation was as a progressive purist, his work as attorney general has been more tempered. The Floyd case could bring some tensions with progressives who have long viewed Ellison as an uncompromising ally.
The Latest: California closes all downtown state buildings
Protests continued following the death of George Floyd, who died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on Memorial Day. ___PORTLAND, Ore. Police in Portland deployed tear gas to disperse a large crowd downtown late Sunday night after authorities said projectiles were thrown at officers. Thousands of people marched throughout Oregons largest city on Sunday, the third day of George Floyd protests in Portland. Unlike Dallas, where police made dozens of arrests to enforce a downtown curfew, Austin doesnt have a curfew and demonstrators have been roaming downtown from the police station to the state Capitol several blocks away for nearly 10 hours. The demonstration over the death of George Floyd came after turbulent protests that led to the arrest of 83 people Saturday night.