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Three Big Things

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  • Moody police officer killed in the line of duty

    MOODY, Ala. (WIAT) — A Moody police officer has been shot and killed Tuesday night, Moody Police Chief Thomas Hunt reports.

    Sgt. Stephen Williams is the officer identified in this shooting. It happened around 9 p.m. at the Super 8 Motel, Chief Hunt reports. At this time, authorities are not releasing details as far as the motive or what the initial call was for when Sgt. Williams reported to the motel.

    Authorities have two suspects in custody, one man and one woman.

    During the investigation, CBS 42 reporter Malique Rankin at the scene heard loud bangs. Chief Hunt reports the sound was most likely tear gas being thrown inside the motel room to make sure all possible suspects were out.

    The fallen police officer, Williams, was a 23-year veteran and worked three years with the Moody Police Department, Hunt reports. He was the night-side sergeant. When describing Williams, Chief Hunt said, “oh, he was awesome.” Hunt said he was a good man, a funny man to be around and not long ago he won officer of the year among their department. Many of the police officers in their department looked up to him as a teacher and mentor.

    Calhoun County 911 made a Facebook post that said, “Our prayers for the Moody Police Officer shot tonight.” And Gardendale Police made a Facebook post that said, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Moody Police Department.”

    U.S. Attorney Jay Town released a statement following the death of Sgt. Williams. "Moody Police Sergeant Stephen Williams’ end of watch has come much too soon.  Our condolences and prayers are with his family, friends, and fellow officers.  His loss is a loss for all of Alabama.  This serves as yet another heartbreaking and stark reminder of the perils encountered by law enforcement each day.” - U.S. ATTORNEY JAY E. TOWN

    https://www.wkrg.com/news/breaking-1-officer-shot-taken-to-hospital-chief-confirms/

  • Peaceful protest in Mobile, demonstrators gather at corner of Airport and Azalea

    MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — A small – but passionate – demonstration was carried out peacefully in Mobile Tuesday night. The protest was in response to not only the death of George Floyd, but ongoing systematic injustice.

    Organizer Dantjuan Miller said the original plan was to march from the corner of Airport Boulevard and Azalea Road all the way to the Shoppes at Bel Air, but after speaking to Chief Lawrence Battiste about public safety, he changed things up.

    “Due to circumstances of traffic, of course and public safety – and we don’t want any harm or anyone to get hurt. Or cause a big disturbance for God’s sake for that matter so I decided – and agreed with the chief as well – we’re just gonna stay right here along Airport,” said Miller.

    “So I told them they can protest from this lot, but we will not support them in a march from this location,” said Battiste.

    The group held signs, chanted, and held a moment of silence for Floyd. Passing cars honked and held their fists up in solidarity.

    https://www.wkrg.com/mobile-county/peaceful-protest-in-mobile-demonstrators-gather-at-corner-of-aiport-and-azalea/

  • Nation’s streets calmest in days, protests largely peaceful

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Protests were largely peaceful and the nation’s streets were calmer than they have been in days since the killing of George Floyd set off demonstrations that at times brought violence and destruction along with pleas to stop police brutality and injustice against African Americans.

    There were scattered reports of looting in New York City overnight, and as of Wednesday morning there had been over 9,000 arrests nationwide since the unrest began following Floyd’s death May 25 in Minneapolis. But there was a marked quiet compared with the unrest of the past few nights, which included fires and shootings in some cities.

    The calmer night came as many cities intensified their curfews, with authorities in New York and Washington ordering people off streets while it was still daylight.

    A block away from the White House, thousands of demonstrators massed following a crackdown a day earlier when officers on foot and horseback aggressively drove peaceful protesters away from Lafayette Park, clearing the way for President Donald Trump to do a photo op at nearby St. John’s Church. Tuesday’s protesters faced law enforcement personnel who stood behind a black chain-link fence that was put up overnight to block access to the park.

    “Last night pushed me way over the edge,” said Jessica DeMaio, 40, of Washington, who attended a Floyd protest Tuesday for the first time. “Being here is better than being at home feeling helpless.”

    Pastors at the church prayed with demonstrators and handed out water bottles. The crowd remained in place after the city’s 7 p.m. curfew passed, defying warnings that the response from law enforcement could be even more forceful. But the crowd Tuesday was peaceful, even polite. At one point, the crowd booed when a protester climbed a light post and took down a street sign. A chant went up: “Peaceful protest!”

    Pope Francis on Wednesday called for national reconciliation and peace.

    Francis said that he has ’’witnessed with great concern the disturbing social unrest” in the United States in recent days.

    “My friends, we cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life,” the pope said during his weekly Wednesday audience, held in the presence of bishops due to coronavirus restrictions on gatherings.

    Trump, meanwhile, amplified his hard-line calls from Monday, when he threatened to send in the military to restore order if governors didn’t do it.

    “NYC, CALL UP THE NATIONAL GUARD,” he tweeted. “The lowlifes and losers are ripping you apart. Act fast!”

    Thousands of people remained in the streets of New York City Tuesday night, undeterred by an 8 p.m. curfew, though most streets were clear by early Wednesday other than police who were patrolling some areas. Midtown Manhattan was pocked with battered storefronts after Monday’s protests.

    Protests also passed across the U.S., including in Los Angeles, Miami, St. Paul, Minnesota, Columbia, South Carolina and Houston, where the police chief talked to peaceful demonstrators, vowing reforms.

    https://apnews.com/b33f9d6420d570ab3f3f7afece67b6bb

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