| NEWS of the Day - September 5, 2012
|on some issues of interest to the community policing and neighborhood activist across the country
EDITOR'S NOTE: The following group of articles from local newspapers and other sources constitutes but a small percentage of the information available to the community policing and neighborhood activist public. It is by no means meant to cover every possible issue of interest, nor is it meant to convey any particular point of view ...
We present this simply as a convenience to our readership ...
From the L.A. Daily News
Report: 17M Americans short of food last year
by Charles Abbott
WASHINGTON - The number of poor Americans who repeatedly ran short of food shot up by 800,000 in 2011 to nearly 17 million compared with 2010, the U.S. government said on Wednesday.
The Department of Agriculture said in a report that about 5.5 percent of Americans, or nearly 17 million, suffered "very low food security" last year, meaning they had to skip meals or not eat for a day because of a lack of money to buy food. That is a rise of 800,000 over the prior year, it said.
The food-security report was released one day after the government said that a record 46.7 million Americans were enrolled for food stamps in June, up by 173,000 in May.
High unemployment and slow growth since the deep 2008-2009 recession has driven enrollment in food stamps, the major U.S. anti-hunger program, to record levels.
This year is likely to be even more problematic for hunger prevention because jobless benefits are running out for tens of thousands of long-term unemployed workers, said Jim Weil, head of the anti-hunger group Food Research and Action Center.
Food-security issues were greatest in the South, in inner cities across the nation, in families with a single parent, in black and Latino households and in households with children.
Mississippi and Arkansas were the states with the highest rate at 19.2 percent, and North Dakota was lowest at 7.8 percent.
`Show me your papers' law upheld in Arizona
by Jacques Billeaud and Walter Berry
PHOENIX - A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Arizona authorities can enforce the most contentious section of the state's immigration law, which critics have dubbed the "show me your papers" provision.
The ruling by U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton clears the way for police to carry out the 2010 law's requirement that officers, while enforcing other laws, question the immigration status of those they suspect are in the country illegally.
The requirement has been at the center of a two-year legal battle that culminated in a U.S. Supreme Court decision in June upholding the requirement.
Opponents then asked Bolton to block the requirement, arguing that it would lead to systematic racial profiling and unreasonably long detentions of Latinos if it's enforced.
Lawyers for Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer urged the judge to let the requirement go into effect, saying the law's opponents were merely speculating in their racial profiling claims, that police have received training to avoid discriminatory practices and that officers must have "reasonable suspicion" that a person is in the country illegally to trigger the requirement.
Less controversial sections of the law have been in effect since late July 2010, but rarely been used.
Arizona's law was passed in 2010 amid voter frustration with the state's role as the busiest illegal entry point into the country. Five states - Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina and Utah - have adopted variations on Arizona's law.
Brewer's office says the law is expected to go into effect shortly.
From Google News
More Cleveland bomb plotters plead guilty
One defendant remains, and he's undergoing psychological evaluations
by M.L. SCHULTZE
Three more people accused of trying to blow up a bridge over the Cuyahoga Valley National Park pleaded guilty this afternoon in federal court. WKSU's M.L. Schultze has more on the abandonment of a defense that was expected to be built around claims of government entrapment.
Two 20-year-olds – Brandon Baxter of Lakewood and Connor Stevens of Berea – along with 26-year-old Douglas Wright of Indianapolis – each pleaded guilty to three charges: conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, attempted use of weapons of mass destruction and malicious use of an explosive device to destroy property used in interstate commerce
Those were the same charges 35-year-old Anthony Hayne of Cleveland pleaded guilty to in July.
U.S. Attorney Steven Dettlebach says all four of them were self-proclaimed – if poorly organized – anarchists who considered a number of targets in Northeast Ohio before settling on planting remote-controlled explosives at the base of the Route 82 bridge over the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
The bomb turned out to be fake, supplied by a paid-FBI informant.
Dettlebach says they made a conscious decision to “commit acts of terrorism” and to plead guilty.
The lone defendant remaining in the case – Joshua Stafford – is undergoing a psychological evaluation. He reportedly joined the crew just two days before they tried to detonate the bomb and were arrested on April 30 th . He also has a long history of minor arrests in Cuyahoga and Lorain counties.
Despite Crime Wave, 50 Chicago Police Sent to Dem Convention
Only days after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel asked for federal agents and U.S. Marshals to help combat the city's wave of violence, about 50 Chicago police officers have arrived in Charlotte to work perimeter security details for a week at the Democratic National Convention.
The Chicago officers, in their distinctive uniforms and checkerboard-brimmed hats, said they had been instructed not to talk with reporters about their out-of-town assignment.
A Charlotte police department spokesperson confirmed that "roughly 50 officers from Chicago" were on duty at the convention.
"These are officers on their days off and were specially trained as mobile field force officers for the recent NATO summit in Chicago," said a spokesperson for the Chicago police department, Melissa Stratton.
Monday morning some of the Chicago officers were stationed near security screening posts where delegates enter the Charlotte Convention Center.
"I would love to know the logic behind that decision to send them there given all that is happening here in Chicago," the Rev. Ira Acree of the Greater St. John Bible Church in Chicago told ABC News Monday.
"It's a state of emergency here in Chicago," Rev. Acree told the Wall Street Journal last week.
Chicago police union officials also questioned the use of officers in Charlotte.
"We had two homicides and dozens of shootings this weekend, and we're sending offices out of the city?" said Pat Camden, a spokesperson for the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police. "I think the average person would shake his head over that."
Last Friday, Mayor Emanuel and Chicago police superintendent Garry McCarthy publicly asked for federal help in targeting neighborhoods that have been hit hardest by the city's wave of violence.
"The help comes in the form of additional agents to target guns, gangs and drugs," Superintendent McCarthy said at a news conference.
Chicago's homicide rate is about 31 percent higher than last year, with 346 reported killings as of August 19, according to figures provided by the Chicago police.
Officials said the Chicago officers were sent to Charlotte to reciprocate for police sent by Charlotte to help during the recent NATO summit held in Chicago.
"They are there on their days off and were not pulled off the street," said Stratton.
She said the officers sent to Charlotte will be paid through a special federal grant of $50 million for convention security. "No funds from the city of Chicago are involved," Stratton said.
"We had a very successful outcome at the NATO convention in Chicago," said Stratton, praising the training of the officers to handle large gatherings.
There was no request for the Chicago officers to assist in security at the GOP convention last week in Tampa, she added.
The police union has been critical of Mayor Emanuel, a prominent figure in the Democratic party and former White House chief of staff, for substantial reductions in the police budget.
"We've had about a thousand officers retire over the last two years and only about 200 have been hired to replace them," said Camden, the Fraternal Order of Police spokesperson.
"We've had a collective failure of all institutions to address the violence and I don't give the President a pass either," said the Chicago pastor, Rev. Acree.
A spokesperson for Charlotte police chief Rodney Monroe said, "Chief Monroe is grateful to have the assistance of these officers for this monumental event."