MCCASKILL BACKS CONTROVERSIAL PROSECUTOR IN FERGUSON CASE

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Gov. Jay Nixon decides not to replace him with a special prosecutor

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Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) is expressing support for the prosecutor handling the Michael Brown case in Ferguson, Mo., despite some calls for him to be removed.

Critics have accused St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch of bias because his father, a police officer, was killed by a black man. McCulloch also publicly criticized the decision to bring in Highway Patrol officers to relieve county police.

McCaskill, though, defended McCulloch and said she supported Gov. Jay Nixon’s (D) decision not to replace him with a special prosecutor.

“I have a unique look at this prosecutor, because I have prosecuted alongside of him,” McCaskill said on MSNBC. “I have known him for 30 years. I know he’s fair.”
The shooting of Brown, an unarmed black teenager, by a white police officer has sparked days of protests in Ferguson.

Evidence could be presented to the grand jury, which currently meets once a week, as early as Wednesday. McCaskill defended the pace of the probe and said that empanelling a new jury would delay the case even more.

“It is not unusual for a grand jury to meet once a week,” she said. “It’s good they’re continuing this grand jury, because seating a new grand jury would be even more delayed.”

“I know this grand jury is diverse,” she added. “That’s very important. I know that the two assistant prosecutors in charge of presenting this evidence are seasoned veteran prosecutors, and one of them is a highly respected African-American prosecutor.

“They will be making the evidence presentation, not Bob McCulloch, and all of the evidence will come in. So, it will take a long time,” said McCaskill.

She added that there was a danger to releasing physical evidence too soon, because witnesses could then conform their testimony to the evidence and investigators would not be able to assess their credibility independently.

McCaskill, who said she also supports the protestors and their right to protest, said increased political participation should be part of the long-term solution.

“The mayor ran unopposed in Ferguson. Most of the councilmen ran unopposed in Ferguson,” she said. “We had a 5 percent turnout from the African-American community to the municipal elections in April.

“We have got to get more involvement of young people in our political system, especially in Ferguson,” she added.

Three University of Massachusetts political scientists, writing in The Washington Post, estimated that turnout was 54 percent among black people in Ferguson in the 2012 presidential election, but was only 6 percent in the 2013 municipal election. It was higher, at 17 percent, among white people that year.

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VIDEO: WITNESSES UNWITTINGLY GAVE UNTAINTED ACCOUNT OF MICHAEL BROWN INCIDENT

Truth about Michael Brown incident revealed in candid conversation?

by INFOWARS.COM | AUGUST 20, 2014

An eyewitness overheard in a video shot in the moments immediately following the controversial police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, appears to claim that the unarmed teen bum-rushed the officer, a detail which would possibly justify the officer’s use of lethal force.

The man can be heard in the background of a video giving an unfiltered account of the incident to another person, as Brown’s body lays in the street. Again, the notable conversation takes place in the background.

As it is difficult to make out, various Internet sleuths have collaborated to create transcripts of what the man is saying. Here’s one version:

1 How’d he get from there to there?

#2 Because he ran, the police was still in the truck – cause he was like over the truck

{crosstalk}

#2 But him and the police was both in the truck, then he ran – the police got out and ran after him

{crosstalk}

#2 Then the next thing I know he coming back toward him cus – the police had his gun drawn already on him –

#1. Oh, the police got his gun

#2 The police kept dumpin on him, and I’m thinking the police kept missing – he like – be like – but he kept coming toward him
The video of the conversation is important because it captures the man speaking in an unguarded manner, with the events still fresh in his mind, and no political or racial agenda to influence his perspective.

The man’s account is probably the closest to the truth we will ever get because he was not prompted to give an interview, but instead spoke candidly among neighbors, thus giving a clearer picture of how the shooting went down.

If the man is referring to Brown rushing toward the officer, it would corroborate the story as told by an alleged friend of Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson’s, who claimed Brown reacted aggressively when approached by the officer.

The original video upload of the footage was allegedly scrubbed from Youtube, “probably at the behest of the surrounding black community who are under pressure to maintain a very specific narrative,” speculates The Conservative Treehouse.

Since the video surfaced, it has been reported that at least 12 other eyewitnesses corroborate Officer Wilson’s version of events.

Missouri cop was badly beaten before shooting Michael Brown, says source

Watch the latest video at video.foxnews.com

By Hollie McKayPublished August 20, 2014

Darren Wilson, the Ferguson, Mo., police officer whose fatal shooting of Michael Brown touched off more than a week of demonstrations, suffered severe facial injuries, including an orbital (eye socket) fracture, and was nearly beaten unconscious by Brown moments before firing his gun, a source close to the department’s top brass told FoxNews.com.

“The Assistant (Police) Chief took him to the hospital, his face all swollen on one side,” said the insider. “He was beaten very severely.”

According to the well-placed source, Wilson was coming off another case in the neighborhood on Aug. 9 when he ordered Michael Brown and his friend Dorain Johnson to stop walking in the middle of the road because they were obstructing traffic. However, the confrontation quickly escalated into physical violence, the source said..

“They ignored him and the officer started to get out of the car to tell them to move,” the source said. “They shoved him right back in, that’s when Michael Brown leans in and starts beating Officer Wilson in the head and the face.

The source claims that there is “solid proof” that there was a struggle between Brown and Wilson for the policeman’s firearm, resulting in the gun going off – although it still remains unclear at this stage who pulled the trigger. Brown started to walk away according to the account, prompting Wilson to draw his gun and order him to freeze. Brown, the source said, raised his hands in the air, and turned around saying, “What, you’re going to shoot me?”

At that point, the source told FoxNews.com, the 6 foot, 4 inch, 292-pound Brown charged Wilson, prompting the officer to fire at least six shots at him, including the fatal bullet that penetrated the top of Brown’s skull, according to an independent autopsy conducted at the request of Brown’s family.

Wilson suffered a fractured eye socket in the fracas, and was left dazed by the initial confrontation, the source said. He is now “traumatized, scared for his life and his family, injured and terrified” that a grand jury, which began hearing evidence on Wednesday, will “make some kind of example out of him,” the source said.

The source also said the dashboard and body cameras, which might have recorded crucial evidence, had been ordered by Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson, but had only recently arrived and had not yet been deployed.

St. Louis County police, who have taken over the investigation, did not return requests for comment about possible injuries suffered by Wilson.

Edward Magee, spokesman for St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCullough, said the office will not disclose the nature of the evidence it will reveal to a grand jury.

“We’ll present every piece of evidence we have, witness statements, et cetera, to the grand jury, and we do not release any evidence or talk about evidence on the case.”

Nabil Khattar, CEO of 7Star Industries – which specializes in firearms training for law enforcement and special operations personnel – confirmed that police are typically instructed to use deadly force if in imminent danger of being killed or suffering great bodily injury.

“You may engage a threat with enough force that is reasonably necessary to defend against that danger,” he said.

Wilson is a six-year veteran of the Ferguson police force department, and has no prior disciplinary infringements.

Massive protests have since taken over the St. Louis community, prompting Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon last Thursday to place Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson at the helm of security operations in an effort to calm ongoing tensions. The federal government is also investigating the death, and Attorney General Eric Holder has taken the lead – calling “the selective release of sensitive information” in the case “troubling.”

On Friday, Ferguson police released surveillance video showing Brown stealing cigars from a convenience store just before his death. Jackson came under intense criticism for disclosing the tape and a related police report as he also insisted that the alleged robbery and the encounter with Wilson were unrelated matters. Brown’s family, through their attorney, suggested the tape’s release was a strategic form of “character assassination.”

However, FoxNews.com’s source insisted that there was absolutely no spin agenda behind the tape’s release and that there were a number of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) media requests filed by media outlets seeking it. Tom Jackson is said to have waited on publicly releasing it, and did not want it shown until Brown’s grieving mother first had the chance to see it.

“He defied the FOIAs as long as he could,” noted the insider. “A powerful, ugly spin has completely ruined public discourse on this whole situation.”

Ferguson’s Other Race Problem: Riots Damaged Asian-Owned Stores

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Tim Mak

Ferguson’s Other Race Problem: Riots Damaged Asian-Owned Stores
Asian-American-owned businesses in the St. Louis suburb are a mess after days of looting in the wake of Michael Brown’s killing. And one lawyer says the authorities let it happen.
It happened during the L.A. riots, when anger over the police beating of Rodney King spilled into Koreatown. It happened fictionally in Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing, when an Asian-American business owner was forced to defend his store from rioters.

And it’s happening again in Ferguson: Looted Asian-American businesses have become collateral damage.

Asian-Americans own a number of the stores lining West Florissant Avenue, where more than 20 businesses have suffered damage in the wake of Michael Brown’s killing. At least five of these stores are Asian-American-owned, according to local sources and business records. Just 0.5 percent of Ferguson is of Asian descent, according to 2010 U.S. Census data.

The Ferguson Market, where the teenage Brown allegedly grabbed a handful of cigars before his deadly encounter with police, is owned by the Patels, an Asian-American family. Looters have targeted the store twice. On the same block, Northland Chop Suey, a Chinese restaurant, has been looted at least two times. A second market, a beauty shop, and a cellphone store within walking distance also have been damaged; all are owned by Asian-Americans.

Jay Kanzler, the Patels’ lawyer, told The Daily Beast he believed that law enforcement authorities allowed the looting of Ferguson Market on Friday in part because it is a minority-owned small business.

“One could [ask] that if this had been a Walmart, a Starbucks…would they have done more to make sure this didn’t happen?…I believe that absolutely factored into the equation,” said Kanzler, who said 80 percent of his clients are first-generation small-business owners. “Their rights may have been placed on a lower priority for the people in charge of protecting them.”

Local Asian-American business owners, however, say they don’t think looters targeted them because of their race. Even as the protests continue, many of the owners are already back in their stores, rebuilding and serving Ferguson residents.

“[Looters] came in here two times, Sunday night and Friday night,” Chinese restaurant owner Boon Jang told The Daily Beast, before adding: “I’ve got to go, I have a customer here.”

In times of racial tension, Asian-Americans have tended to be left out of the conversation between white and black America, reflecting the prevailing sense during more peaceful times that they don’t quite belong in either camp.

That’s the result of “the role of Asians when it comes to race tensions between white and black,” said Johnny Wang, president of the Asian American Chamber of Commerce of St. Louis. “The common complaint is that we just stay on the sidelines and don’t say anything.”

A precursor to the 1992 L.A. riots was the 1991 killing of teenager Latasha Harlins, an African-American teenager shot by a Korean-American storekeeper who thought she was trying to steal juice. The incident left lingering bitterness among some in the local African-American community that contributed in part to the Koreatown violence a year later.

“Hopefully it doesn’t devolve into what happened in the L.A. riots,” Wang said. “Because if that happens, we’re all getting out of Dodge.”
There is no similar tension in Ferguson, locals say—in fact, some 40 residents of the suburb formed a picket line at Ferguson Market last Friday in an unsuccessful attempt to protect it from looting, and many have offered to help clean up in the aftermath of the violence.

“We support this community and this community supports us,” said Priyanka Patel, daughter of the Ferguson Market owners. “We love Ferguson and are proud to be business members of this community.”

On Wednesday morning, local Asian-American civic and business leaders released a statement urging unity in the aftermath of Brown’s death and calm after nights of violence.

“It is so sad and disheartening to see this level of violence expressed toward the business owners, who have always supported this community in good times and bad,” said Anil Gopal, president of the St. Louis Indian Business Association. “Many minority businesses located here and helped revitalize this community. We hope and pray that the violent actions of a few outsiders do not erode any progress Ferguson and its people have been experiencing.”

Among Asian-American business owners in Ferguson, and other business owners in the St. Louis suburb, there is a deep concern over whether insurance will cover the damages from the looting. Many insurance contracts expressly consider civil unrest a reason not to pay out policies.

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“It’s a fear over whether the insurance cover the damage, and repeated damage,” said Kathleen Osborn, executive director of the St. Louis Regional Business Council, referring to the small businesses in Ferguson her group is trying to assist. “Some of them are so small they don’t have the expertise to fill out the insurance forms.”

Added Kanzler, who represents the Patels and another minority-owned small business that was looted, “Oftentimes, small-business policies contain that clause…it should be a concern.”

For the time being, Asian-American business owners are determined to get back on their feet, to continue providing services in Ferguson—unless the unrest worsens and they feel targeted.

“Hopefully it doesn’t devolve into what happened in the L.A. riots,” Wang said. “Because if that happens, we’re all getting out of Dodge.”

The 35.4 Percent: 109,631,000 on Welfare

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By Terence P. Jeffrey

109,631,000 Americans lived in households that received benefits from one or more federally funded “means-tested programs” — also known as welfare — as of the fourth quarter of 2012, according to data released Tuesday by the Census Bureau.

The Census Bureau has not yet reported how many were on welfare in 2013 or the first two quarters of 2014.

But the 109,631,000 living in households taking federal welfare benefits as of the end of 2012, according to the Census Bureau, equaled 35.4 percent of all 309,467,000 people living in the United States at that time.

When those receiving benefits from non-means-tested federal programs — such as Social Security, Medicare, unemployment and veterans benefits — were added to those taking welfare benefits, it turned out that 153,323,000 people were getting federal benefits of some type at the end of 2012.

Subtract the 3,297,000 who were receiving veterans’ benefits from the total, and that leaves 150,026,000 people receiving non-veterans’ benefits.

The 153,323,000 total benefit-takers at the end of 2012, said the Census Bureau, equaled 49.5 percent of the population. The 150,026,000 taking benefits other than veterans’ benefits equaled about 48.5 percent of the population.

When America re-elected President Barack Obama in 2012, we had not quite reached the point where more than half the country was taking benefits from the federal government.

It is a reasonable bet, however, that with the implementation of Obamacare — with its provisions expanding Medicaid and providing health-insurance subsidies to people earning up to 400 percent of poverty — that if we have not already surpassed that point (not counting those getting veterans benefits) we soon will.

What did taxpayers give to the 109,631,000 — the 35.4 percent of the nation — getting welfare benefits at the end of 2012?

82,679,000 of the welfare-takers lived in households where people were on Medicaid, said the Census Bureau. 51,471,000 were in households on food stamps. 22,526,000 were in the Women, Infants and Children program. 20,355,000 were in household on Supplemental Security Income. 13,267,000 lived in public housing or got housing subsidies. 5,442,000 got Temporary Assistance to Needy Families. 4,517,000 received other forms of federal cash assistance.

How do you put in perspective the 109,631,000 people taking welfare, or the 150,026,000 getting some type of federal benefit other than veterans’ benefits?

Well, the CIA World Factbook says there are 142,470,272 people in Russia. So, the 150,026,000 people getting non-veterans federal benefits in the United States at the end of 2012 outnumbered all the people in Russia.

63,742,977 people live in the United Kingdom and 44,291,413 live in the Ukraine, says the CIA. So, the combined 108,034,390 people in these two nations was about 1,596,610 less than 109,631,000 collecting welfare in the United States.

It may be more telling, however, to compare the 109,631,000 Americans taking federal welfare benefits at the end of 2012 to Americans categorized by other characteristics.

In 2012, according to the Census Bureau, there were 103,087,000 full-time year-round workers in the United States (including 16,606,000 full-time year-round government workers). Thus, the welfare-takers outnumbered full-time year-round workers by 6,544,000.

California, the nation’s most-populated state, contained an estimated 38,332,521 people in 2013, says the Census Bureau. Texas had 26,448,193 people, New York had 19,651,127, and Florida had 19,552,860. But the combined 103,984,701 people in these four massive states still fell about 5,646,299 short of the 109,631,000 people on welfare.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, when President Obama was elected, there were 96,197,000 people living in households taking benefits from one or more federal welfare programs. After four years, by the fourth quarter of 2012, that had grown by 13,434,000.

Those 13,434,000 additional people on welfare outnumbered the 12,882,135 people the Census Bureau estimated lived in Obama’s home state of Illinois in 2013.

Sacramento Kaiser Treating Patient Possibly Exposed to Ebola Virus

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Wednesday, Aug 20, 2014 • Updated at 9:51 AM PDT
A patient admitted to a South Sacramento hospital may have been exposed to the Ebola virus, health officials said Tuesday.
The Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center is working with the Sacramento County Division of Public Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to test blood samples from the patient.
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“In order to protect our patients, staff and physicians, even though infection with the virus is unconfirmed, we are taking the actions recommended by the CDC as a precaution, just as we do for other patients with a suspected infectious disease,” Dr. Stephen Parodi, director of hospital operations for Kaiser Permanente Northern California, said in a statement. “This includes isolation of the patient in a specially equipped negative pressure room and the use of personal protective equipment by trained staff, coordinated with infectious disease specialists. This enables the medical center to provide care in a setting that safeguards other patients and medical teams.”
Philly Mom Mourns 2 Kids Killed by Ebola Virus
The Ebola virus got worldwide attention earlier this month when two United States aid workers were infected in Liberia. The aid workers were move to an Atlanta hospital for treatment in a specially equipped plane. Both patients are recovering, officials said.
Almond, Peanut Butter Sold at Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s Recalled
The Ebola outbreak started in December of last year in West Africa. Since the outbreak, some 2,200 people have been diagnosed with the virus and nearly half o those people died.
Even though the Ebola virus can be deadly, doctors said, survival rates are improving because people are getting checked if they feel they have come in contact with the virus.

Clashes erupt in sealed-off Ebola area of Liberia capital

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Monrovia (AFP) – Four residents of a quarantined Ebola-hit slum in the Liberian capital were injured on Wednesday in clashes with police and soldiers sent in to seal off the area, an AFP correspondent and witnesses said.

The violence flared when the security forces went in to evacuate a government official and his family from the West Point neighbourhood of Monrovia, which is being contained as part of new security measures over the deadly virus.