police abuse

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The numerous videos of police abuse have led to police reform efforts at both the national and state level. Delmarva Public Media's Don  Rush talked with Haneef Salaam, American Civil Liberties Union of Delaware manager of the Campaign for Smart Justice, about those efforts beginning with his own recent encounter with the police. (Part 1)  

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The verdict in the Derick Chauvin has put a spotlight on police abuse in the African American community. Delmarva Public Media's Don Rush talked with James Nolan, a former Wilmington Police Officer who now teaches socialology at West Virginia University. Nolan says much of the problem lies in the strictly law enforcement approach to the community by officers.

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This week saw the conviction of former police officer Derek Chauvin on murder and manslaughter charges in the death of George Floyd. Delmarva Public Media Essayist George Merrill sees the verdict as a step in the healing of the nation's soul.

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While the nation has been focused on the election and the coronavirus pandemic, there were efforts on Capitol Hill to address police abuse after the death of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer. Delmarva Public Media's Don Rush talked with Diane Randall, General Secretary for the Friends Committee on National Legislation, about the failure of congress to approve legislation addressing the issue. (Part 2)

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It seems that we live in a maelstrom of events that keep unfolding before our very eyes. Delmarma Public Media's essayist Steve Plotkin writes there doesn't seem to be a moment to rest against the overwhelming tide.


This week there are so many problems on so many fronts, my
pen experienced sensory overload and simply shut down,
leaving me speechless.

Don Rush

The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis has sparked protests across country that has led the nation to focus on racism in America. Delmarva Public Radio Essay George Merrill writes we may be seeing a turning point for the country.

Don Rush

Several hundred protesters marched in Salisbury this week as part of the nationwide demonstrations that have taken place over the death of George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush talked with protesters about issues ranging from their reaction to the cell phone video to what they believe must be done to curb police abuse.

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The large demonstrations that have gone on for more than two weeks now over the death of George Floyd who died after a white officer placed a knee on his neck. And, many political figures have joined those protest. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot who has announced his intention to run for governor talked with Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush about his reaction to Floyd's death and movement that it has created.

Sports and Race (Part 2)

Jun 10, 2020
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National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell has now apologized for how it handled the player's protest over police abuse against African Americans. Mike Lurie is an east coast sports writer and a commentator of Delmarva Public Radio. He reflects on the issue of race and the world of sports. (Part 2)

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The photo op of President Trump with a bible in his hand has sparked outrage among religious leaders in the country. Delmarva Public Radio Essayist George Merrill was taken by that act and what it symbolized about the president.

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Salisbury Mayor Jake Day has departed for a ten month mission with his National Guard unit. Before leaving Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush talked with the mayor about the death of George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer and the subsequent protests.

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Protests continued across the country in the wake of the death of George Floyd, an African American man, at the hands of a white police officer. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush talks with Charlotte King Chair of the Southern Delaware Alliance for Racial Justice about her initial reaction to the video of Floyd's death. (Part 1)


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Protests have spread across the country to demonstrate against the death of an African American man, George Floyd, at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis. Kirkland Hall, a local activist and a member of the Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconcilation Commission, tells Delmarva Publc Radio's Don Rush about his angish but also his strong objection to the violence that has occurred during the protests.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The monitor observing reforms to the Baltimore Police Department has told a legislative committee that dysfunction in the department is so deep and widespread that it will take longer to fix than anticipated.

The Baltimore Sun reports attorney Kenneth Thompson spoke Thursday to the House of Delegates' Judiciary Committee in Annapolis and called the department "a highly dysfunctional organization." He said he believed it would take longer to reform the department than acting Police Commissioner Gary Tuggle's prediction of five to seven years.

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Former Baltimore Police Officer Arthur Williams has been charged with first and second-degree assault and misconduct in office for the beating of Dashawn McGrier.

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby made the announcement yesterday saying that a warrant has been issued for his arrest.

Williams, a newly sworn probationary officer, resigned on Sunday after community reaction to the incident.

The second officer seen on a video of the incident will not be charged.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - A Maryland police force is reviewing civilian and body camera footage after a confrontation between a police officer and a teenager in which the officer was heard threatening to send the teen to the hospital.

Baltimore police spokesman T.J. Smith told news outlets the department's Office of Professional Standards is looking into the incident, which stemmed from a burglary call.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - An independent panel that investigates police misconduct in a Maryland city is refusing to sign a new confidentiality agreement.

The Baltimore Sun reports the Baltimore Police Civilian Review Board said Thursday that it won't sign the agreement being imposed by the city solicitor's office. Board members said they're concerned that a restructure has landed it under the city solicitor's office, which represents the police department, its officers and the city in lawsuits.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The judge overseeing Baltimore police reform is questioning whether the police department has the resources or leadership to comply with its agreement with federal officials.

The Baltimore Sun reports that in an order granting an extension for submitting draft policies last week, U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar said the department's "good faith" isn't in question, but there are concerns about its "ability to deliver on its promises."

Salisbury Police Website

SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - A judge on Maryland's Eastern Shore has rejected a city's request to dismiss a lawsuit seeking records about a legal settlement over excessive force accusations against a police officer.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland and the Baltimore-based Real News Network filed the lawsuit against the city of Salisbury under the state's Public Information Act.

In 2016 the city settled a lawsuit filed by four Salisbury University students against an officer in the city's police department. Details of the settlement were never released.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - A federal judge has told Baltimore's political and police leaders Friday that compliance with a federal consent decree is not optional.

U.S. District Judge James Bredar on Friday held the first public court hearing in Baltimore to review how initial progress is going with a federal oversight program requiring expansive reform of the city's police department. He signed the order a year ago over objections from President Donald Trump's Justice Department.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Six teams are vying to become an independent monitor over police reforms in Baltimore.

The Baltimore Sun reports that the six teams were chosen as finalists from a list of more than two dozen applicants for the job. The team selected will oversee the implementation of reforms mandated under the agreement between the city and U.S. Department of Justice.

The six teams under consideration are CNA Consulting, DLA Piper, Exiger, Powers Consulting Group, Susan Burke and Venable.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - A Baltimore police officer who was acquitted in the high-profile death of a 25-year-old black man recently told his supervisors that he witnessed officers from a neighboring county kicking and punching a suspect.

Edward Nero was the first of six officers charged in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray to be tried and acquitted. The Baltimore Sun reports that Nero notified supervisors in January that he saw two Baltimore County officers abusing a suspect.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - An attorney for the U.S. Justice Department says the agency has "grave concerns" about a proposed agreement to overhaul the Baltimore Police Department.

Justice Department attorney John Gore told a judge Thursday at a public hearing that newly minted Attorney General Jeff Sessions is concerned about the agreement and "whether it will achieve the goals of public safety and law enforcement while at the same time protecting civil rights."

Baltimore residents overwhelmingly voiced support for a proposed overhaul.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - An attorney for the city of Baltimore says it is ready and willing to enter into a court-enforceable agreement to implement sweeping reforms to the city's troubled police department.

Baltimore's solicitor David Ralph said at a public hearing on Thursday that when the city, police department and federal government negotiated the plan, it was designed to fight crime and protect civil rights.

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BALTIMORE, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers say they have written to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and asked him to rescind a request the Justice Department made to delay police reforms.

The letter was signed by U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, and congressmen Elijah Cummings, Dutch Ruppersberger and John Sarbanes, who said they object to the Justice Department's request.

The agency asked a Baltimore judge to postpone a hearing on a proposed agreement to overhaul the Baltimore Police Department.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Civil rights advocates will be speaking in favor of a measure in Maryland designed to increase transparency in police misconduct investigations.

The American Civil Liberties of Maryland will gather Wednesday in Annapolis, along with several other groups.

They will be joined by Del. Erek Barron and Sen. Joan Carter Conway, who are sponsoring the legislation.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - A judge has granted the Justice Department's request to postpone a hearing on a proposed consent decree involving Baltimore's police department to give officials time to brief the new administration of President Donald Trump.

U.S. District Judge James Bredar noted Friday that the city didn't object to the delay. He put off the hearing from Tuesday to Feb. 1.


BALTIMORE (AP) - The federal judge presiding over a settlement between the Baltimore Police Department and the U.S. Justice Department has asked the city's mayor to appear in court to discuss the costs of the agreement.

In a letter sent Wednesday, U.S. District Judge James Bredar said he wants Mayor Catherine Pugh to appear at a hearing next week to address whether he can accept the terms of the proposed agreement without an estimate of how much it would cost to execute.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Nearly two years after the death of Freddie Gray while in Baltimore police custody exposed systemic failures within the department that included excessive force, racial discrimination and illegal arrests, city officials are expected to agree with federal officials on court-enforceable reforms.

A consent decree, which will be announced at a joint news conference with Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh and U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch, will be filed in U.S. District Court after it's approved by the city's spending panel Thursday.


BALTIMORE (AP) - Baltimore's new mayor says the city is aiming to reach an agreement with the federal government to overhaul police practices before President-elect Donald Trump takes office.

Mayor Catherine Pugh, who took office two weeks ago, told news reporters Tuesday she thinks they can do it. Last week Attorney General Loretta Lynch put pressure on Baltimore saying "the ball is in the city's court" to conclude negotiations soon.