June 15 Black Lives Matter protests

By Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes, Helen Regan and Steve George, CNN

Updated 12:41 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020
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4:14 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

NYPD will reassign roughly 600 anti-crime unit plainclothes officers

From CNN's Julian Cummings


The New York City Police Department will reassign roughly 600 anti-crime unit plainclothes officers into new roles effective immediately, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea announced at a news conference. 

The officers will now work in “a variety of assignments including detective bureaus, neighborhood policing, and other assignments,” he said.

“This is a seismic shift in the culture in how the NYPD polices this great city. It will be felt immediately among the five district attorney’s offices. It will be felt immediately in the communities we protect,” Shea added.

The NYPD will still have plainclothes officers among the ranks, he said.

“What we always struggle with, I believe, as police executives, is not keeping crime down, it’s keeping crime down and keeping the community with us and I think those two things, at times, have been at odds," Shea said.

“This is no reflection whatsoever on the men and women of the police department who are out there doing the work. This is a policy shift coming from me, personally," he added.

3:38 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Senate Democrats ask for investigation into Barr's role in clearing Lafayette Square protest

From CNN's Manu Raju and Jeremy Herb 

Alex Brandon/AP/FILE
Alex Brandon/AP/FILE

Senate Democrats want the Department of Justice inspector general to investigate Attorney General William Barr's role in the clearing of peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square.

A group of Democrats, led by Sen. Mazie Hirono, a Democrat from Hawaii, sent a letter to Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz today asking him to open an investigation into the forceful removal of the protesters. 

Some background: President Trump's walk from the White House across Lafayette Square to St. John's Episcopal Church that took place after authorities forcibly pushed out peaceful protesters has drawn criticism from lawmakers and public figures, including former Defense Secretary James Mattis.

The episode sparked a national outcry, including within the district where Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser denounced what she described as an attack against protesters.

Barr defends use of force at peaceful protests:

3:19 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Rayshard Brooks' widow to officers: "Do they feel sorry for what they took away?"

From CNN’s Natasha Chen and Maria Cartaya

Tomika Miller, the widow of Rayshard Brooks, holds their daughter Memory during a press conference in Atlanta on Monday, June 15.
Tomika Miller, the widow of Rayshard Brooks, holds their daughter Memory during a press conference in Atlanta on Monday, June 15. Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/AP

In a one-on-one interview with CNN, Tomika Miller, the widow of Rayshard Brooks, said she wants to know whether the officers involved in Friday’s shooting feel sympathy for her family.

Through tears, Miller said, “Do they feel sorry for what they took away? If they had the chance to do it again, would they do it the same way or would they do it totally different?” 

Still, Miller said she’s not angry about how officers treated her husband, including how long it took to attend to him after he was shot, because “God will deal with that.”

She told CNN the family had been together earlier that day, enjoying time with their children. Miller said she was tired and went home to rest.

"I wish I could apologize for not being with him. I feel so guilty. And I just keep saying, 'I’m so sorry, I’m sorry.' I feel so much guilt. I know he wanted me to stay with him. I was just so tired that day,” she said.

Miller called for protests to remain peaceful, saying destroying things is not going to help.

She said there needs to be more community dialogue between people and the police officers sworn to protect them. She said she wants change through communication, not aggression.

Rayshard Brooks' niece and widow speak out: 

2:25 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

NYPD officer suspended without pay after discharging mace at bystanders

From CNN's Elizabeth Joseph

An New York City Police Department officer has been suspended without pay after discharging "mace at a group of bystanders” during a demonstration on June 1, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said in a statement Monday afternoon. 

The commissioner said he’s publicly sharing the information as part of the NYPD’s “efforts at greater transparency.”

The police department’s Internal Affairs Bureau conducted an investigation, the statement said, and suspended the probationary officer without pay. The case is now with the Department Advocate for disciplinary action.

“There are other matters that we are actively investigating and we will continue to be transparent as the process continues,” Shea said in the statement.

“Trust is critical to effective policing. Trust takes a long time to earn and it is very easy to lose. We will continue to work relentlessly to earn and keep that trust because without community partnership, we cannot effectively do our jobs," he said.


2:14 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

FIFA responds to Trump's criticism on allowing players to kneel: "We must all say no to racism"

From CNN's Jabari Jackson

Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images
Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

FIFA, the international governing body of soccer, released a statement on Monday calling for “tolerance” and “mutual respect” after President Trump criticized the annulment of a policy that required players to stand during the national anthem. 

The organization doubled down on the decision made by United States Soccer Federation last week to repeal the “stand-for-anthem” policy after leaders acknowledged a public change in sentiment following the death of George Floyd.

“FIFA strongly advocates for tolerance, mutual respect and common sense when such important matters are debated,” the statement said. “FIFA has a zero-tolerance approach to incidents of all forms of discrimination in football, as outlined in the FIFA Statutes. We must all say no to racism and no to violence.”

What is this about: Trump tweeted on Saturday, “I won’t be watching much anymore!” in response to a report from CNN affiliate WEAR in which Rep. Matt Gaetz, a Republican from Florida, voiced strong disagreement with US Soccer's reversal. 

1:52 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Trump expected to sign modest police reforms on Tuesday

From CNN's Jeremy Diamond and Kaitlan Collins

President Trump walks across the south lawn of the White House on June 14.
President Trump walks across the south lawn of the White House on June 14. Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

President Trump is expected to sign an executive order on Tuesday to establish a national certification system for law enforcement agencies and a database to better track excessive uses of force by police officers nationwide, a source familiar with the matter told CNN.

The executive order is still being finalized, but the key provisions in the current draft of the order include modest directives with broad-based support intended to encourage higher standards among police departments while leaving the prospect of more significant police reform in the hands of Congress.

A source briefed on the text of the executive order said it is relatively muted when it comes to sweeping police reforms that have been discussed by members of both parties recently. The order mainly leans on lawmakers to do the heavy lifting, as the President has privately expressed caution about alienating police officers by going too far.

Trump has yet to comprehensively address issues of police reform or even acknowledge systemic racism in America. He has not been heavily involved in drafting the executive order. Instead, the President has directed his energy on delivering a tough-talking law-and-order message and falsely portraying peaceful protesters as mostly violent.

The executive order is also expected to direct the secretary of health and human services to encourage police departments to embed mental health professionals in their response to calls related to mental health, homelessness and addiction as well as to find resources to help police departments hire mental health co-responders, the source said.

Ja'Ron Smith, a deputy assistant to the President, confirmed Monday morning that the executive order will look to incentivize police departments to include mental health professionals as co-responders.

"Co-responders would allow for police to do their job but bring in social workers and experts that deal with mental health and deal with issues such as drug addiction or alcohol addiction or even other issues like homelessness," Smith said on Fox News Channel.

The executive order is also expected to include language acknowledging that some law enforcement officials have misused their authority and will urge Congress to pass legislation on police reform.

What is Congress doing: Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill are working to advance two competing bills, with the Democratic legislation going further in several respects by banning chokeholds and no-knock warrants. White House officials have been coordinating with South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, the sole black Republican senator, who is spearheading the GOP's legislative effort.

While Trump has been hesitant to wade into the issue of police reform, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner and Smith have been leading an effort inside the White House to seek out police reform proposals from criminal justice reform advocates and law enforcement groups in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.

While Trump signaled last week that he may support outlawing chokeholds, the executive order is not expected to direct an outright ban.

"I don't like chokeholds," Trump said in a Fox News interview last week, before quickly suggesting that some situations might make the use of a chokehold appropriate.

"I think the concept of chokehold sounds so innocent, so perfect, and then you realize if it's a one on one — now if it's a two on one, that's a little bit of a different story, depending — depending on the toughness and strength. You know, we're talking about toughness and strength. We are talking -- there's a physical thing here also. But if a police officer is in a bad scuffle, and he's got somebody in a chokehold ... " Trump said. "With that being said, it would be, I think, a very good thing that, generally speaking, it should be ended."

1:29 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Black Lives Matter activist found dead

From CNN's Tina Burnside

Tallahassee Police are investigating the death of a Black Lives Matter protester whose body was found just days after she was reported missing, according to a police news release.

Oluwatoyin Salau, 19, along with a 75-year-old woman were found dead on Saturday night. Authorities have not released details as to what the relationship was between the two women or how they were killed. Both deaths are being investigated as homicides, police said. 

A suspect has been taken into custody. He is identified as 49-year-old Aaron Glee Jr. 

Salau had not been heard from since June 6, the same day she shared a series of tweets claiming that she had been sexually assaulted earlier that morning. 

1:27 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Protests continue in Atlanta following Rayshard Brooks' death

From CNN's Christina Maxouris and Holly Yan

Protesters take part in a march organized by NAACP on June 15 in Atlanta.
Protesters take part in a march organized by NAACP on June 15 in Atlanta. Dustin Chambers/Getty Images

Protesters flooded the streets of downtown Atlanta on Monday to demand an end to systemic racism and decry the death of Rayshard Brooks who was shot and killed by police.

Brooks, 27, was shot twice in the back, the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office said.

Hours after the killing, Atlanta police chief Erika Shields stepped down. The officer who shot Brooks, Garrett Rolfe, was fired. Another officer at the scene, Devin Brosnan, was put on administrative duty.

Protesters also called for an end to Georgia's citizen's arrest law, which made national headlines after the death of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed black man killed in southeast Georgia while jogging.

Nationwide rallies denouncing police brutality have taken place every day for 20 days since the death of George Floyd, who died after a Minneapolis officer pressed his knee against his neck for almost 9 minutes.

Wes Bruer/AFP/Getty Images
Wes Bruer/AFP/Getty Images

Dustin Chambers/Getty Images
Dustin Chambers/Getty Images

12:28 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Law enforcement agencies in New Jersey will be required to publish annual list of disciplined officers

From CNN's Elizabeth Joseph

Every state, county, and local law enforcement agency across New Jersey will be required to publish a list of officers “who were fired, demoted, or suspended for more than five days due to a disciplinary violation,” state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced in a statement Monday.

Law enforcement agencies will be required to publish the list annually, with the first list to be published no later than December 31.

“Today, we end the practice of protecting the few to the detriment of the many. Today, we recommit ourselves to building a culture of transparency and accountability in law enforcement,” Grewal said in the statement.

Prior to this order, unless they have faced criminal charges, the disciplinary records of officers have generally not been revealed to the public, according to the Attorney General’s office.

“We cannot build trust with the public unless we’re candid about the shortcomings of our own officers,” said Col. Patrick J. Callahan, New Jersey State Police superintendent. 

“By releasing the names of State Troopers who committed serious disciplinary violations, we are continuing the long, hard work of earning and maintaining the trust of the communities we serve.”