June 15 Black Lives Matter protests

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4:27 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Atlanta mayor orders police reforms following Rayshard Brooks killing

WGCL
WGCL

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said she will executive orders on police reform following the death of Rayshard Brooks.

"In an effort for us to develop a succinct appeal for human rights, I am signing an administrative order that will convene a body to begin to succinctly articulate our grievances and what we see as our solutions," she said at a news conference.

She said she hopes this "will be a framework in Atlanta and possibly the nation."

Bottoms said that on Friday, after Brooks was killed, it "became abundantly clear very quickly that there is a need for us to take an immediate look at our training policies."

Watch her announcement:

4:10 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Brooks' family attorney to protesters: "Keep your foot on the gas"

From CNN’s Natasha Chen and Maria Cartaya

Justin Miller, an attorney for Tomika Miller, the widow of Rayshard Brooks, told CNN Brooks’ case is "very personal" to him because "we've all been in that situation."

"Every single black man I know has dealt with this situation," Miller said. "What they'll tell you is 'do what the officer says and you go home,' but George Floyd shows you that's not true.” 

Miller told CNN he is not claiming that Brooks was perfect and said Brooks could have handled the situation differently. But he said the professionals on scene could have handled the situation differently, too.

"If you don't want to put him back in the car, because nobody wants that, call his wife. 'Listen, is there somebody that we can call to come get you? We'll give you 20 minutes. If they come, you can go home. If they don't come, we have to take you to jail.' Simple. Easy," Miller said.

He referred to surveillance video, in which he said the officer had his hand on his weapon before a Taser was pointed. Miller said that shows the officer’s intention was ready to shoot.

Miller also addressed the protests saying, "This is the first time in my lifetime that I feel like real systemic change may occur."

He had a message to protesters: "I want them to keep their foot on the gas. Keep going. Keep pushing. Keep letting people know that this is not something we will not tolerate." 

Miller suggested that police reform could include 100 hours of community service for officers before they are assigned to patrol a neighborhood, which he said would give police and community members time to know each other.

3:59 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Atlanta activist on Rayshard Brooks death: "It could've been me"

From CNN's Maureen Chowdhury

Devin Barrington-Ward, a community activist protesting in Atlanta, said that the shooting of Rayshard Brooks hit home because it happened in his neighborhood.

"I go to that Wendy's all the time. That could've been me," Barrington-Ward told CNN's Ryan Young.

"George Floyd was close to home because he’s a black man and I’m a black man. But this was a black man in my neighborhood. This was a black man at a drive-through I go to all the time. And the idea that people were in the streets for two weeks before saying ‘No justice. No peace.’ Saying that the police are out of control. And the response from the police department would be to gun down an unarmed man," Barrington-Ward said.

He also said that the continuing protests are an attempt to shift culture in states and cities across the country where police "brutalize black people" and "uphold white supremacy."

Barrington-Ward added that government officials need to start supporting policies that reflect the needs of black communities. "We need our government officials, particularly in a city like Atlanta that prides itself on black leadership, to side with black people," he said.

Watch:

4:14 p.m. ET, June 15, 2020

NYPD will reassign roughly 600 anti-crime unit plainclothes officers

From CNN's Julian Cummings

CNN
CNN

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."