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- 10/19/16--21:14: _Trump Refuses to Sa...
- 10/20/16--08:22: _Sotomayor on Scalia...
- 10/20/16--09:27: _Fact Check: Trump a...
- 10/20/16--06:05: _Caught On Cam: Troo...
- 10/20/16--09:17: _Bao Bao to Move to ...
- 10/20/16--10:34: _Trump Will Honor El...
- 10/20/16--12:34: _Target Recalls Hall...
- 10/20/16--11:33: _Therapy Dogs Provid...
- 10/20/16--19:31: _5th Body Turns Up i...
- 10/20/16--12:21: _Woman With Cancer: ...
- 10/20/16--21:56: _'Day of Action' Mar...
- 10/20/16--11:50: _Singer to Be Reunit...
- 10/20/16--16:26: _Driver Writes Thank...
- 10/20/16--20:57: _AG Won't Probe Dead...
- 10/20/16--11:10: _New Accuser Says Tr...
- 10/20/16--15:19: _Officer Honored for...
- 10/20/16--15:09: _Chicago, Post-Laqua...
- 10/20/16--19:42: _Could an Undiscover...
- 10/21/16--01:52: _Dem Group Against T...
- 10/21/16--05:39: _Trump's Media Attac...
- 10/19/16--21:14: Trump Refuses to Say He'll Accept Result of Election
- 10/20/16--08:22: Sotomayor on Scalia: I Wanted to Hit Him With Baseball Bat
- 10/20/16--09:27: Fact Check: Trump and Clinton's Debate Claims
- 10/20/16--06:05: Caught On Cam: Trooper Rescues Bald Eagle
- 10/20/16--09:17: Bao Bao to Move to China in Early 2017
- 10/20/16--10:34: Trump Will Honor Election Results 'If I Win'
- 10/20/16--12:34: Target Recalls Halloween Light-Up Gel Clings
- 10/20/16--11:33: Therapy Dogs Provide Comfort in Court
- 10/20/16--19:31: 5th Body Turns Up in Small NY Town in 5 Weeks; No Arrests
- 10/20/16--12:21: Woman With Cancer: '#JuJuOnThatChemo'
- 10/20/16--21:56: 'Day of Action' Marks Anniversary of Laquan McDonald Killing
- 10/20/16--11:50: Singer to Be Reunited With Camera Card Found on NYC Street
- 10/20/16--16:26: Driver Writes Thank-You Note to NJ Trooper Who Ticketed Him
- 10/20/16--20:57: AG Won't Probe Deadly NYPD Shooting of Mentally Ill Woman
- 10/20/16--11:10: New Accuser Says Trump Groped Her at 1998 US Open
- 10/20/16--15:19: Officer Honored for Saving Boy, 3
- 10/20/16--15:09: Chicago, Post-Laquan McDonald
- 10/20/16--19:42: Could an Undiscovered Planet Be Why Our Sun Is Tilted?
- 10/21/16--01:52: Dem Group Against Third-Party Voting
- 10/21/16--05:39: Trump's Media Attacks: 'Biting the Hands That Fed Him'?
Donald Trump is no longer saying he will accept the result of the presidential election in November, which would be a break from one of the oldest and most fundamental American political traditions.
One of Trump's main talking points at rallies in recent days has been his allegation that the election is being rigged — he has offered no evidence — and debate moderator Chris Wallace asked at Wednesday's debate if he would accept the result on Nov. 8.
"I will look at it at the time," Trump said, suggesting that the media's reporting on the current state of the election is distorted and that Clinton should be disqaulified for office.
Wallace explained the political tradition that the losers of elections in the United States concede to the winner, keeping the peace, then asked again if Trump would accept the result. Trump said, "I will tell you at the time. I'll keep you in suspense."
Hillary Clinton quickly replied to Trump's remark, saying "that's horrifying."
Clinton said that not accepting losses is common for Trump, saying he was even bothered by losing an Emmy — Trump interjected, "Should have gotten it."
"This is how Donald thinks," Clinton said, as some in the audience at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas laughed. "It's funny but it's also really troubling."
Both Trump's daughter, Ivanka, and vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence said earlier Wednesday they believed Trump would accept the result.
"We'll certainly accept the outcome of this election," Pence said on CNN before the debate.
"I believe he'll accept the outcome either way," Ivanka Trump said at a summit on women in Southern California.
Trump has also said he'll accept the result of the election, but his new response — the culmination of days of complaints about the election being rigged — marked a major and possibly unprecedented change in American politics.
Immediately after the debate, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus told NBC's Hallie Jackson that Trump will accept the results of the election. He later released a statement that did not mention the controversy, but called Trump "the only candidate ready to shake up Washington and give a voice back to the American people."
Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway reacted to the remark on MSNBC by saying Trump would accept the results because he will win. When Chris Matthews pressed her on what would happen if he lost, she pointed to Al Gore challenging the 2000 election results in Florida — though Gore sought a recount only when the vote totals showed a margin of less than 2,000 votes, and he never called the result into question beforehand.
The reaction online was swift, with many people, even Trump supporters, repudiating the comment.
"Based on that answer alone, I hope Mr Trump loses all 50 states. He deserves to. He is attacking democracy itself," tweeted a scholar at the conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute.
Already not a fan of Trump, Jerry Springer, the former talk show host and mayor of Cincinnati, tweeted that he is "an outrage" for not saying he would accept the election. "Is he planning a coup?"
Photo Credit: John Locher/AP
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Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump answers a question during the third presidential debate at Las Vegas on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016.
Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor recalled working with her late colleague Antonin Scalia, including how she sometimes had the urge to hit him with a baseball bat, NBC News reported.
“I've told people there are things he said on the bench when if I had a baseball bat, I might have used it," Sotomayor said a the University of Minnesota on Monday. "But when you work so intimately with people, you get to know the really personal good side of them."
Sotomayor also spoke to how the court has been handicapped by Congress’ refusal to confirm Barack Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland to replace Scalia.
"It's much more difficult for us to do our job if we are not what we are intended to be, a court of nine,” she said.
Photo Credit: Leigh Vogel/Getty Images
File photo: Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor receives the Leadership Award during the 29th Hispanic Heritage Awards at the Warner Theatre on Sept. 22, 2016, in Washington, D.C.
Donald Trump painted an inaccurately dark portrait of manufacturing in America while Hillary Clinton stretched credulity in boasting that her spending plans won't add to the country's debt. Associated Press writer Chris Rugaber breaks down those claims and more.
A Florida Highway Patrol trooper and a bald eagle are both recovering after a daring rescue. Trooper Julio Velez had his dash cam rolling when he came upon a bald eagle that had been hit by a Jeep. The bird was standing on the shoulder of the highway, too stunned to fly away. Velez scooped up the bird, and after a brief struggle was able to put it in the backseat of his patrol car. Amazingly, the bird didn't suffer any broken bones and will likely fly again. Velez, meanwhile, suffered several puncture wounds to his arm from the eagle's razor-sharp talons.
You have just a few more months to visit Bao Bao at the National Zoo.
The 3-year-old giant panda is moving to China within the first few months of 2017 to enter the its panda breeding program, the National Zoo said Thursday.
All panda cubs born at the zoo move to China by the time they turn 4. Bao Bao will turn 4 Aug. 23, 2017.
"We are sad to see her go, but excited for the contributions she is going to continue to make to the global giant panda population,” said Brandie Smith, associate director of animal care sciences at the zoo in Washington, D.C.
Bao Bao's keepers are already preparing her for the trip by getting her acclimated to a travel crate. While an exact date for her departure was not given, the zoo says Bao Bao will move in late winter.
The zoo says it's better for pandas to travel in the winter months when its cool. A team will travel with Bao Bao to ensure she's comfortable throughout the trip.
The zoo is planning a farewell party for Bao Bao, but details about the public celebration have not been released.
Bao Bao is the second of three surviving cubs born to Mei Xiang during her time at the zoo. She now weighs 180 pounds and is classified as a "sub-adult.'' Pandas can begin breeding between the ages of 4 and 6.
Speaking at a rally in Ohio on Oct. 20, 2016, Donald Trump said that he would accept the presidential election results if they were in his favor. "I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters and to all the people of the United Staes that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election -- if I win,” Donald Trump said, emphasizing the last three words by pointing into the crowd. The rally was held the day following the final debate, during which the issue of whether he would accept the election results came up. At the debate, he said he would have to wait and see what the results were.
A set of Halloween-themed light-up gel clings sold at Target is being recalled because they pose a hazard to children.
About 127,000 of the gel clings, which are used on windows, are being recalled from stores nationwide, where they were sold in August and September, according to a U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recall alert posted Thursday. No injuries have yet been reported, but the devices pose a risk for choking and swallowing battery hazards.
The gel clings came in six colors and shapes, and can be identified by model number 234-25-0904. Customers can get a full refund for any of the gel clings they purchased.
Photo Credit: Via CPSC
Various LED gel clings sold at Target stores nationwide that were recalled Thursday, October 20, 2016.
Specially trained dogs are being used to help children and other victims of crimes feel comfortable while taking the witness stand in one California court.
Photo Credit: KSL
Utah teen faces felony drug charges after synthetic drug "pink" takes the lives of two 13-year-olds.
Authorities have recovered another set of remains in a small Long Island town plagued by gang violence that has now seen five bodies turn up in a little more than a month.
The body found in the woods behind a state-run psychiatric hospital in Brentwood Sunday has been identified as Jose Pena-Hernandez, an 18-year-old man who hadn't been seen since June, police said.
Pena-Hernandez's remains were discovered as police scoured the grounds of the facility near Crooked Hill Road and the Long Island Expressway as part of the ongoing investigation into the series of murders.
The discovery follows the unearthing of four bodies of Brentwood High School students over the last six weeks. Oscar Acosta, 19, and Miguel Garcia-Moran, 15, were missing for several months before their bodies were found near Long Island Railroad tracks Sept. 26.
Authorities said that the two were victims of gang violence.
Two young girls, best friends with a passion for basketball, were found dead two weeks before Acosta and Garcia-Moran. On Sept. 13, the day before her 16th birthday, Nisa Mickens' brutally beaten body was found on a tree-lined street in Brentwood. A day later, the beaten body of her lifelong friend, 16-year-old Kayla Cuevas, was discovered in the wooded backyard of a nearby home. Investigators suspect they too were victims of gang violence.
Police said Thursday that Pena-Hernandez was a known MS-13 gang member. An autopsy will be conducted to determine how he died, but police say they are investigating the case as a homicide.
Suffolk Police said Thursday Pena-Hernandez's remains were not found by accident. They said they've been putting pressure on the more than 25 known MS-13 gang members previously in custody on various charges -- some felonies, some misdemeanors -- as part of a larger gang takedown. None of the dozens of gang members arrested were charged in the murders but they're facing state or federal RICO charges -- meaning they need to cooperate or face lengthy prison sentences.
Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy Sini told residents, "You're going to hear helicopters more often. That doesn't mean we're actively searching for anyone. We are engaging in proactive patrols and that includes by our schools, certain hot spots and in the air."
Anyone with information on the killings of Pena-Hernandez, Garcia-Moran, Acosta, Mickens or Cuevas is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. A $50,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest in the deaths of Mickens and Cuevas.
Brentwood had a population of 60,664 as of 2010, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
A Texas woman is not letting cancer and chemo get her down. Ana-Alecia Ayala, who’s battling a rare form of uterine sarcoma, has joined the viral dance craze — and has a heartwarming message to share.
In a social media post shared Tuesday, Ayala, in her hospital gown and medical tubes attached to her, dances to "JuJu On That Beat" with her friend Danielle Andrus during a chemotherapy session at Baylor T. Boone Pickens Cancer Hospital in Dallas.
"We want to show the world that dancing and laughter is the best medicine," wrote Ayala, who's from Dallas. "#JustForFun #ChemoSucks #CancerAwareness #JuJuOnThatBeat #JuJuOnThatChemo."
Ayala, who has rhabdomyosarcoma, has had two surgeries for tumor removal and port placement since she was diagnosed in December 2015. She has been in chemo since January, according to her GoFundMe.
Photo Credit: Ana-Alecia Ayala
Ana-Alecia Ayala, left, and Danielle Andrus dance to "JuJu On That Beat" during Ayala's chemo session at a Texas hospital.
The two-year anniversary of the shooting death of Laquan McDonald was met with protests and calls for change from hundreds of demonstrators.
With some declaring Oct. 20 Laquan Day, protesters are expected to gather for a “day of action” to “commemorate his life.”
An event is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Chicago Police Headquarters, where demonstrators are set to speak out at a Chicago Police Board Hearing, demanding the “termination of all police officers involved with falsifying police reports in efforts of covering up [McDonald’s] death.”
Seventeen-year-old McDonald was shot 16 times on Oct. 20, 2014, by a Chicago officer. Police claimed at the time McDonald has lunged at them, but dashcam video released last year showed McDonald apparently walking away when he was shot.
Officers at the scene said McDonald was told numerous times to drop his knife, but the dashcam video of the shooting had no audio.
Officer Jason Van Dyke has been charged with first-degree murder in McDonald's death; he had pleaded not guilty. Several other officers involved in the case face administrative charges, including making a false report.
Many have questioned the handling of the case over the last two years, with a grand jury set to consider whether or not police officers lied in connection with the shooting.
A woman who witnessed the fatal police shooting has filed a federal lawsuit claiming she was detained by police and pressured to change her story shortly after the shooting.
“Two years ago Laquan McDonald lost his life tragically and unnecessarily," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement. "His death was a wake-up call for our city on an issue that has challenged the city for decades, and brought a renewed commitment to a public conversation about policing and community relations. But more than just breaking from the past, we will continue working together across the city to build a brighter future by restoring trust between residents and our officers, and implementing the reforms necessary to prevent this from happening again.”
More than 600 people have said on Facebook they plan to attend the Thursday evening event.
Photo Credit: Getty Images
A German choir singer will be reunited with a camera memory card filled with priceless photos, a week after a New Jersey woman contacted NBC 4 New York after finding the chip on a street near World Trade Center.
A singer for the Berlin Radio Choir was able to identify the photos on the SD card that Tammy Tozer found in the Financial District on Oct. 14.
The singer emailed NBC 4 New York after a segment featuring the photos aired on News 4 New York Tuesday and was able to get in touch with Tozer, who lives in southern New Jersey.
The card was full of wedding and family vacation photos, but Tozer wasn't able to find anything on it identifying the owners.
Tozer is planning on overnighting the SD card to the singer's hotel so he can be reunited with the images before the choir finishes its performances at the Lincoln Center and heads back to Germany on Saturday.
A SIM card filled with wedding photos was found on a street near the World Trade Center last week
A New Jersey State trooper received a surprising letter from a driver he'd pulled over to ticket last week.
New Jersey State Police posted on its Facebook page Thursday a praise-filled note from Dave Coskey, general manager of Longport Media, a company that owns and operates radio stations in southern New Jersey.
In the letter, Coskey expressed how impressed he was with Trooper 7515’s dedication to encouraging drivers to slow down and save lives.
“He could have easily handed me the summons and walked away. But he didn’t,” Coskey wrote. “It was pretty obvious that this trooper was really interested in safe driving on the Parkway.”
Coskey was driving his wife’s car on Sunday when he was pulled over. He admitted that “her German car has a bit more pep than [his] Jeep” and he wasn’t paying as much attention to his speed as he usually did. It was the first time he had been pulled over in 15 years, Coskey wrote.
After the trooper handed Coskey his summons, he explained that there had been some recent fatal accidents on the Parkway and the NJSP was working to make the Parkway a safer place to drive. But the trooper’s concern didn’t stop there.
“He finished by asking me as I departed to please use the shoulder as an acceleration lane and that he would remain behind me to help make it safe to re-enter the highway – which he did,” Coskey wrote.
After reflecting on the interaction, Coskey wrote a letter to the NJSP to express his appreciation of how well the trooper had presented himself.
“I never expected to be blown away by an interaction with a trooper after being stopped,” Coskey wrote. “His demeanor and actions are a credit to the State Police.”
The trooper is “adamant about remaining anonymous,” the New Jersey State Police Facebook page reads. "He told us that he wants no recognition for just doing his job. Well, he's doing a phenomenal job!"
Photo Credit: NJSP / Facebook
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New York's attorney general will not investigate this week's deadly NYPD shooting of a mentally ill Bronx woman, saying a review of the evidence indicated the case falls outside the jurisdiction of his office.
Eric Schneiderman said Thursday "there is no question" the shooting of 66-year-old Deborah Danner should be investigated, but he said the probe does not fall under the purview of his office under a 2015 executive order allowing for a special prosecutor in police shootings "only under limited circumstances."
"It is vital to note that this jurisdictional determination has no legal impact whatsoever on the ultimate question of whether or not a crime was committed, or whether the officer involved should be prosecuted," Schneiderman said, adding it is up to the Bronx district attorney to decide whether to bring a case.
Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark said Thursday her office would "conduct a full, reasoned and independent investigation into this matter, with an open mind, and any decisions that I make will be based upon the evidence."
The development comes a day after top city officials, including the mayor and NYPD commissioner, condemned the fatal shooting as "unacceptable."
Officers were called to Danner's seventh-floor apartment on Pugsley Avenue Tuesday after a neighbor called 911 to report a disturbance. NYPD Sgt. Hugh Barry, an eight-year department veteran, encountered the schizophrenic woman in her bedroom; she was naked and armed with scissors. He persuaded her to put down the scissors but as he was coaxing her out of the room, she picked up the baseball bat and charged him. Barry fired two shots, killing her.
Both NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill and Mayor de Blasio have pledged a thorough investigation into the shooting. In the meantime, Barry has been placed on modified duty, stripped of his gun and his badge.
O'Neill said Wednesday it was evident some NYPD protocols around mentally ill suspects were not followed in Danner's case. The investigation will focus on a number of factors, including why Barry did not deploy his stun gun.
"What is clear in this one instance, we failed. I want to know why it happened," O'Neill said.
De Blasio said Wednesday the sergeant who shot Danner was among the thousands of cops who received proper training as it relates to the mentally ill.
"Something went horribly wrong here," the mayor said. "It's quite clear our officers are supposed to use deadly force only when faced with a dire situation and it's very hard for any of us to see that that standard was met here."
"Deborah Danner should be alive right now, period," de Blasio added. "If the protocols had been followed, she would be alive. It's as simple as that."
Dozens of people called for justice for Danner in a march Wednesday night through the streets of Castle Hill. On Thursday, dozens of mourners gathered outside Danner's Bronx home to grieve and call for change.
Ed Mullins, president of the NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association, said Barry was patient in trying to deescalate the situation. He said Barry was trying to convince Danner to leave the bedroom in a peaceful manner when she grabbed the bat, ignored his demands to drop it, and aimed the weapon at his head.
"Fearing for his own life, as well as the lives of others, Sgt. Barry fired two shots from his service weapon and mortally wounded Ms. Danner," Mullins said in a statement. "Sgt. Hugh Barry, an eight-year department veteran with an exemplary record, took immediate charge of the situation. As a frontline supervisor, it is his responsibility to do so."
Barry has been the subject of two lawsuits in 2010 and 2011 alleging brutality, according to court records. The first was settled for $25,000 and the second for $10,000.
Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York
A New York yoga instructor came forward Thursday as Donald Trump's 10th accuser of sexual misconduct and said the Republican presidential nominee groped her in 1998, leaving her feeling "intimidated" and "powerless."
Karena Virginia said Trump touched her breast while she was waiting for a car after attending the US Open tennis tournament in Queens in 1998.
Nine women have previously come forward to accuse Trump of sexual misconduct. Trump has denied those allegations.
A Trump campaign representative also rejected Virginia's account as "fictional" and alleged a "coordinated" attack between her lawyer and the Clinton campaign.
"Discredited political operative Gloria Allred, in another coordinated, publicity seeking attack with the Clinton campaign, will stop at nothing to smear Mr. Trump," said Jessica Ditto, the campaign's deputy communications director. "Give me a break. Voters are tired of these circus-like antics and reject these fictional stories and the clear efforts to benefit Hillary Clinton."
Allred, who is supporting Hillary Clinton for president, said earlier Thursday that she had not been in touch with Clinton's campaign about Virginia.
Virginia said she never met Trump before the incident occurred. She said she was waiting for her car when she saw Trump talking to other men and overheard Trump tell the men: “'Hey look at this one. We haven’t seen her before. Look at those legs.' As though I was an object, rather than a person.”
She said Trump approached her, grabbed her by the arm and touched her right breast.
"I was in shock, I flinched," Virginia said. "'Don’t you know who I am?' That's what he said to me."
Virginia said she told her husband and others about the incident, which she said made her feel "intimidated" and "powerless."
She said Trump's actions made her ashamed that she wore a short dress and high heels and that for years afterward she struggled with what to wear so as not to attract unwanted attention from men.
Virginia said she saw Trump about five years ago in a business setting with other people present and that he "looked her up and down" several times at that event.
"I had come to the realization that I was the victim," she said. He had violated me when he groped me years earlier."
Trump has said that he's never met some of his accusers and claimed that Hillary Clinton campaign was involved in fabricating allegations against him.
Virginia said no one has asked her to come forward and that many people advised her not to speak publicly fearing Trump would attack her for speaking out.
"Perhaps you do not remember me or what you did to me so many years ago but I can assure you I remember you and what you did to me as though it was yesterday," Virginia said. "Your random moment of sexual pleasure came at my expense and affected me greatly."
Allred, Virginia's lawyer, said she was not considering a lawsuit against Trump. Allred said the celebrity businessman's statement at the debate Wednesday night that "nobody has more respect for women than I do" is "ludicrous."
Allred held a press conference with another one of Trump's accusers last week, who said he forcibly kissed her and thrusted his genitals at her. Summer Zervos, a former contestant on "The Apprentice" reality show, alleged Trump made the inappropriate sexual contact at a Beverly Hills hotel in 2007.
"Today’s victim is also noteworthy in that her allegations demonstrate how Mr. Trump selects his victims at random,” Allred said Thursday.
Karena Virginia is one of 10 women accusing Donald Trump of sexual misconduct.
When seconds mattered, a North Texas police officer made an impact that will last a lifetime. And on Wednesday, the family of the 3-year-old boy whose life he saved got to thank its hero.
"Go give him a hug," Bethany Hoover told her 3-year-old son, Brayden Geis, sending him over to Granbury Police Officer Chase Miller.
There was a lot of meaning in that hug, a thank you too big for words for what Miller did last week.
"I thought my life was over when it happened. I mean, he is my life," Hoover said of her son.
Brayden was visiting his mother at work when he spiked a fever, had a seizure and stopped breathing.
"His eyes were rolling further and further in the back of his head, and it was just something you never want to see your son do," said Brayden's father, John Geis.
Miller was close by and heard the call on his radio. Even though he wasn't directly dispatched, Miller came straight over, making it to the scene long before an ambulance. He calmly took Brayden from his frantic mother and immediately started CPR.
"Just trying to get him breathing," Miller said. "Everything else that's going on around you doesn't matter at that point."
Miller got out a breathing mask and had Brayden's dad continue chest compressions until he started breathing again.
"He was crying and it was just relief immediately," Hoover said.
Granbury's City Council honored Miller for his quick thinking Tuesday night. But a hug from Brayden's little arms is all he needs.
"It feels good to know that he's all right," Miller said. "I'm very thankful."
Thankful doesn't begin to cover it for Brayden's mom and dad. Their little fireball is back at it like nothing happened, though his parents will make sure he knows the story.
"He's going to know who saved his life," John Geis said.
Miller and his wife are expecting their first child, and Brayden's mom gave him some advice: never let go.
The two families plan to stay in touch for a long time.
Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
Granbury Police Officer Chase Miller hugs 3-year-old son Brayden Geis, whom he saved with CPR after Brayden had a seizure and stopped breathing.
The shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald two years ago, on Oct. 20, 2014, has become the defining moment of a mayor, his police force, the criminal justice system and a city that for decades resisted with all its might the notion that a code of silence dictated who got justice and who did not.
Even Jamie Kalven, the independent Chicago journalist who first broke the story of the 2014 killing of the teenager, shot 16 times by Officer Jason Van Dyke, admits being stunned at it's impact.
"It is extraordinary," he said this week. "I’ve never seen anything like it. I couldn’t have imagined it."
Alderman Pat O'Connor, Rahm Emanuel's City Council floor leader, does not disagree.
"I think it has changed, definitely changed the way the city operates going forward," O'Connor said in an interview in his City Hall office.
It hardly started out that way.
A police involved shooting.
A kid with a knife — according to the now discredited official version — who was out of control.
"He lunged at police," asserted Fraternal Order of Police spokesman Pat Camden on the scene that night.
Ultimately, police dash cam video would prove that not to be true.
It was something City Hall and CPD knew within hours of Laquan McDonald's death. But the general public did not. Not until a year later, November of 2015, when a Cook County judge ordered the release of the video.
"Everybody saw in a very incredible way this young man being shot," O'Connor said.
"It has affected not just questions of police accountability and police-community relations but really every dimension of our public life in Chicago," Kalven said.
The ramifications were immense. Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy was fired. State's Attorney Anita Alvarez voted out of office. Officer Jason Van Dyke was charged with murder and entered a plea of not guilty. Police reports showed a cavalier attitude by higher ups signing off on police reports that proved untrue. Federal prosecutors began to probe. The Justice Department opened a pattern and practice investigation. And the mayor was humbled as his popularity plunged.
"I know that the city’s efforts have been an honest attempt to make sure that we are making changes," Pat O’Connor argues. And there have been structural changes.
The Independent Police Review Authority, tasked with probing police shootings, was cast aside in favor of the Civilian Office of Police Accountability.
But perhaps most significantly, police video evidence is to be released publicly within 60 days. In McDonald’s case it took 13 months for the city to be forced by a Cook County judge to release the damning pictures.
But it is how the system works — and worked the night of October 20, 2014 — that most concerns the journalist Jamie Kalven. What took place, he argues, went far beyond a cover-up.
"A cover-up would be a matter of a relatively small number of people conspiratorially suppressing something,” he said, adding he thinks this “is the way our institutions work. And I think we are all reckoning with that."
As is the family of Laquan McDonald, who released a statement on this second anniversary of his death reading:
Laquan’s death at the hands of Jason Van Dyke was a brutal and senseless act of violence.
Time has not dulled the pain of this tragic loss to his mother, his sister and the rest of his extended family.
We thank all of the people who have honored Laquan’s memory and continue to advocate for police reform.
We look forward to the day when Jason Van Dyke will be held responsible for Laquan’s senseless murder and everyone involved in trying to cover up this criminal act is held accountable.
Only then will justice truly be served.
Today, two special prosecutors and the U.S. Department of Justice continue to investigate.
As defining moments go, the case of Laquan McDonald still grips Chicago.
Photo Credit: Getty Images, File
Demonstrators confront police during a protest on November 24, 2015, in Chicago, after the release of video showing the shooting death of Laquan McDonald.
A theoretical, distant and undiscovered planet in the solar system may be why the sun is tilted, according to a new study released this week by Caltech scientists.
It's called Planet Nine, NBC News reported, and it is said to be lurking deep in the Milky Way, tilting the planets in our solar system by as much as six degrees — or so the calculations say.
"Because Planet Nine is so massive and has an orbit tilted compared to the other planets, the solar system has no choice but to slowly twist out of alignment," said Elizabeth Bailey, lead author of the study announcing the discovery.
Planet Nine remains a mystery. It was proposed through computer and mathematical modeling, but one has actually seen it yet, far beyond Pluto, which used to be thought of as the ninth planet.
Photo Credit: Caltech/R. Hurt (IPAC)
An artistic rendering shows the view from a proposed Planet Nine, with the sun in the background back towards the sun. Caltech scientists, who first found evidence of the undiscovered planet, said in a study published in October 2016 it could be responsible for the tilt of the sun.
A deep-pocketed environmental group aligned with Hillary Clinton will blanket 1.1 million households in battleground states with mailers warning millennials that a vote for a third-party candidate only helps Donald Trump, the group told NBC News.
The League of Conservation Voters plans to spend $2.6 million before Election Day, most of which will go towards their efforts to prevent Libertarian Nominee Gary Johnson and Green Party nominee Jill Stein — polling at about 7 percent and 3 percent, respectively — from siphoning votes away from Clinton.
"There are high stakes for young voters in this election, including the opportunity to meet the climate crisis head-on, and they overwhelmingly dislike Trump. But some may still be leaning towards a third-party candidate instead of Hillary," said LCV National Campaigns Director Clay Schroers. "This is a group of young people who don't want to risk a Trump presidency, and it's important that they know that a vote for anyone but Hillary is a vote for Trump."
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(L-R) Gary Johnson and Jill Stein. A conservation group closely aligned to Hillary Clinton will be sending out letters to voters with their argument that voting for a third party candidate will only strengthen Donald Trump.
Donald Trump's increased hostility towards the media is not only a dangerous approach because it erodes voters' faith in the integrity of the electrical system, but the strategy is also somewhat ironic for the former reality TV star. After all, without it, he would never have become the nominee of the Republican Party.
"He's biting the hands that fed him for all those months," said Temple University journalism professor Larry Atkins, author of "Skewed: A Critical Thinker's Guide to Media Bias."
Trump earned close to $2 billion worth of free media attention — dwarfing that of his Republican competitors in the primaries, according to the New York Times, NBC News reported.
Kurt Bardella, Breitbart's former spokesman, said that by setting up a narrative that the media are corrupt, he's building the foundation for another business venture.
"Everything he says and does — and this has been the case for weeks — has been laying down the case for the rationale for a Trump TV," Bardella said.
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File, in this file photo, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump looks on after the third U.S. presidential debate at the Thomas & Mack Center on October 19, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Tonight is the final debate ahead of Election Day on November 8.