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Trooper who arrested Sandra Bland placed on desk duty for 'violations'

Sandra BlandThe Texas state trooper who arrested a woman who died three days later in her jail cell was placed on administrative duty for allegedly violating policy, the Texas Department of Public Safety said Friday.

The trooper, whose name was not reported, arrested Sandra Bland, 28, July 10 after a traffic stop. She was charged with assault on a public servant after allegedly becoming combatant with the officer, Waller County Sheriff Glenn Smith said.


Sailor injured in Tennessee attack dies, bringing death toll to five

Fifth sailr dies in ChatanoogaThe U.S. Navy says that the sailor who was shot earlier this week at a military support center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, has died.

The death occurred Saturday, two days after a deadly shooting killed four Marines and injured three others, including the sailor, in Chattanooga.

Authorities say Kuwait-born Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, 24, of Hixson, Tennessee, unleashed a barrage of fire at a recruiting center in Chattanooga, then drove several miles away to a Navy and Marine reserve center, where he shot and killed the Marines, and wounded the sailor.


California Wildfire Sweeps Across I-15 Freeway, Burns Cars

Wildfire LA freewayA rapid-moving vegetation fire broke out Friday afternoon in the Cajon Pass, burning several vehicles stopped on the I-15 Freeway and forcing mandatory evacuations in the area.

Early reports indicated there were multiple injuries.

The blaze, which has been dubbed "North Fire" on social media, was reported at about 2:30 p.m. and had spread to about 3,500 acres by 5:30 p.m., San Bernardino County officials said. and is about 5 percent contained.


No action on rape kits despite new laws, federal money

rape kits not acted onOver the past decade alone, Congress has approved enough money to reduce the nation's backlog of DNA evidence testing to have tested more than 1 million sexual assault evidence kits.

So far, however, despite evidence that the number of untested rape kits could number into the hundreds of thousands coast to coast, the vast majority of the money is not reaching local and state police authorities where the abandoned rape evidence could be tested and the problem reduced.


Missouri had no right to withhold death penalty drug information, judge rules

Judge: execution drugs cannot be withheldA judge in Missouri struck a blow for public transparency in the practice of the death penalty by ruling that the state’s department of corrections had no right to withhold information from the media about the source of its lethal injection drugs.

Judge Jon Beetem, sitting in the Missouri circuit court of Cole County, ruled the state had “knowingly failed, at least in part” to comply with its obligation to act with transparency. He ordered the state to release key details about its supply of deadly chemicals, pending a further hearing on what information should be redacted.


Police: 4 people shot in Maine; armed ex-con in custody

Maine shootingsA former convict sought in the overnight shootings of four people in three northern Maine communities was taken into custody on Friday, state police said.

Anthony Lord, 35, was arrested in Houlton, and a woman being held with him was safe, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

Dozens of law enforcement officers had been searching for Lord, who is believed to have stolen a logging truck before the shootings in the towns of Lee, Benedicta and Silver Ridge.


Sexual Orientation Discrimination Is Barred By Existing Law, Federal Commission Rules

Existing law protects LGBT employeesThe Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has ruled that existing civil rights law bars sexual orientation-based employment discrimination — a groundbreaking decision to advance legal protections for gay, lesbian, and bisexual workers.

“[A]llegations of discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation necessarily state a claim of discrimination on the basis of sex,” the commission concluded in a decision dated July 15.


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