Officer Darren Wilson of the Ferguson, Mo., police department says he was in fear for his life in August when he shot and killed unarmed teen Michael Brown, the New York Times reports. The shooting sparked continuing protests over police violence against minorities, especially unarmed black men.
Wilson’s testimony to federal investigators, shared by officials familiar with his statements, is the first public account of events that led to the fatal shooting. He told investigators that he was pinned in his vehicle and was in fear for his life as he struggled with Brown over his gun during a scuffle, the Times says.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court said Saturday that Texas can use its controversial new voter identification law for the November election.
A majority of the justices rejected an emergency request from the Justice Department and civil rights groups to prohibit the state from requiring voters to produce certain forms of photo identification in order to cast ballots. Three justices dissented.
The law was struck down by a federal judge last week, but a federal appeals court had put that ruling on hold. The judge found that roughly 600,000 voters, many of them black or Latino, could be turned away at the polls because they lack acceptable identification. Early voting in Texas begins Monday.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – “Stand your ground” statutes benefit whites more than blacks, are unnecessary and cause minority men to live in fear, several experts said Friday to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission as it evaluates racial disparities in the laws.
But one dissenter, an African-American lawmaker from South Carolina, said the law benefits black defendants by putting in place an extra hurdle in the way of arrest by police officers who may have hidden racial biases.
Violent crimes up in Memphis area this year
(AP) — The Memphis Shelby Crime Commission says major violent crimes have increased through the first nine months of the year compared with the same time period in 2013.
The commission says the year-to-date violent crime numbers are still 6.6 percent higher in Shelby County and 6 percent higher in Memphis than last year at this time. Major violent crimes include murder, forcible rapes, aggravated assaults and robberies.
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