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Rob Parker on RGIII’s blackness
Dec-13-2012 1166 0


Robert Griffin III has been asked about his race repeatedly this season. He has not, to my knowledge, ever brought the subject up himself. Every time he’s been asked about it, he has managed to appear thoughtful and considerate without possibly offending anyone.

I’m not sure he’s ever handled the race question better than on last week’s Comcast SportsNet special, when Chick Hernandez talked about being a black quarterback in D.C.

“Whenever you can relate to the population of the team that you play for, I think it makes it that much more special,” Griffin said. “I don’t play too much into the color game, because I don’t want to be the best African American quarterback, I want to be the best quarterback.

“But to the fans, and to the fans who think that way and look at me as an African American, it’s important that I succeed, not only for this team, but for them,” he continued. “Because it gives them that motivation, that hey, you know, an African American went out and played quarterback for my Washington Redskins. So I appreciate that; I don’t ever downplay anything like that. Whoever I can go out every week and motivate to do better and to try to go after their dreams, I’m up for that.”

Again, I don’t know how he could possibly have handled that issue — which he did not raise himself — any better.

But people keep asking. The rookie was asked about race yet again on Wednesday, this time by an ESPN reporter. He delivered a similar answer. It was an answer that showed he’s actually thought about the issue, but it was steadfastly non-controversial.

“I am [aware] of how race is relevant to [some fans]. I don’t ignore it,” Griffin said Wednesday. “I try not to be defined by it, but I understand different perspectives and how people view different things. So I understand they’re excited their quarterback is an African American. I play with a lot of pride, a lot of character, a lot of heart. So I understand that, and I appreciate them for being fans.”

Well. This led to a Thursday discussion on First Take, ESPN’s abysmal debate program. Panelist Rob Parker was asked, ‘What does this say about RGIII?”

“This is an interesting topic,” Parker said. “For me, personally, just me, this throws up a red flag, what I keep hearing. And I don’t know who’s asking the questions, but we’ve heard a couple of times now of a black guy kind of distancing himself away from black people.

“I understand the whole story of I just want to be the best,” Parker continued. “Nobody’s out on the field saying to themselves, I want to be the best black quarterback. You’re just playing football, right? You want to be the best, you want to throw the most touchdowns and have the most yards and win the most games. Nobody is [thinking] that.

“But time and time we keep hearing this, so it just makes me wonder deeper about him,” Parker went on. “And I’ve talked to some people down in Washington D.C., friends of mine, who are around and at some of the press conferences, people I’ve known for a long time. But my question, which is just a straight honest question. Is he a brother, or is he a cornball brother?”

What does that mean, Parker was asked.

“Well, [that] he’s black, he kind of does his thing, but he’s not really down with the cause, he’s not one of us,” Parker explained. “He’s kind of black, but he’s not really the guy you’d really want to hang out with, because he’s off to do something else.”

Why is that your question, Parker was asked.

“Well, because I want to find out about him,” Parker said. “I don’t know, because I keep hearing these things. We all know he has a white fiancée. There was all this talk about he’s a Republican, which, there’s no information [about that] at all. I’m just trying to dig deeper as to why he has an issue. Because we did find out with Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods was like I’ve got black skin but don’t call me black. So people got to wondering about Tiger Woods early on.”

Then Skip Bayless asked Parker about RGIII’s braids.

“Now that’s different,” Parker said. “To me, that’s very urban and makes you feel like…wearing braids, you’re a brother. You’re a brother if you’ve got braids on.”

Then Stephen A. Smith was asked for his take. He exhaled deeply.

“Well first of all let me say this: I’m uncomfortable with where we just went,” Smith said. “RGIII, the ethnicity, the color of his fiancée is none of our business. It’s irrelevant. He can live his life any way he chooses. The braids that he has in his hair, that’s his business, that’s his life. I don’t judge someone’s blackness based on those kind of things. I just don’t do that. I’m not that kind of guy.

“What I would say to you is that the comments he made are fairly predictable,” Smith went on. “I think it’s something that he may feel, but it’s also a concerted effort to appease the masses to some degree, which I’m finding relatively irritating, because I don’t believe that the black athlete has any responsibility whatsoever to have to do such things.

“Let me say this clearly. I don’t know of anybody who goes into something trying to be the best black anything. We understand that. That’s a given,” Smith said. “But I do think it’s important to acknowledge a level of pride and a feeling of a level of accomplishment for being somebody who happens to be of African American descent, who competes and achieves and accomplishes things on the highest level while also bringing attention – to some degree anyhow – to the pride that they feel being black. Because they’re allowing themselves to be a reminder to those who preceded them, who worked so hard, accomplished and achieved so much, but were denied the accolades that that individual is receiving.”

Later, Parker was given an opportunity to clarify whether he was judging Griffin’s blackness.

“I didn’t mean it like that,” he said. “We could sit here and be honest, or we can be dishonest. And you can’t tell me that people in the barbershops or people that talk, they look at who your spouse is. They do. And they look at how you present yourself. People will say all the time, you’re not gonna get a job in corporate America wearing those braids. It happens all the time. Let’s not act like it doesn’t, because it does.”

The only conclusion I’m willing to make about all of this is that the show would have been much more thoughtful had Griffin been on the panel. Or had he replaced the panel.


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Sara Sidner Oct-23-2014 118 0
There is never a day where at least one person isn't outside the Ferguson, Missouri, Police Department sitting or standing near an anemic tree, the only place for a bit of shade.

At night, the crowd tends to swell, and the protest grows more intense.

There are almost always two or three people streaming events live. You can hear them loudly sharing thoughts or giving a play-by-play of what's happening.

While their cameras capture lives images, they call out what they think are injustices surrounding the August shooting of Michael Brown and the subsequent police crackdown on protesters in the 10 weeks or so since Brown was killed by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson.
The police are geared up with cameras as well. They wear body cameras, and any time officers approach protesters there is usually at least one officer with a handheld camera, too.

It's a careful dance in which protesters and police are trying to make sure they have proof if a law is broken or someone's civil rights are violated.

Both outside the police department, and roughly 2 miles east -- along the main protest route, where most of the imagery of the sometimes-violent protests has originated -- tension can go from zero to 100 in seconds on any given night.

Police can tally dozens of arrests a night since the city erupted. Among those placed in cuffs were journalists, clergy, a local rapper, a state senator, a St. Louis alderman and activist/intellectual Cornel West.

It's tough to predict the mood each night. On Tuesday, a small group of about 50 protesters caused no disturbances, and there were no arrests, police said. The next night, five police officers were assaulted with rocks, water bottles and a metal rod as demonstrators blocked traffic and knocked down barricades outside the police department.

Protesters, many of them increasingly suspicious of a recent spate of leaks surrounding the Brown investigation, say there will be more nights like Wednesday than Tuesday should a grand jury not indict Wilson.

On West Florissant, where thousands of protesters have marched for months chanting things like "Hands up, don't shoot," buildings still bear the scars of the community's frustration.

At businesses such as the Ferguson Market & Liquor and Red's BBQ, plywood slats sit where windows once stood before violent elements among the protesters looted and vandalized businesses along the corridor. The QuikTrip that was one of the first businesses attacked still lies in shambles, a chain link fence protecting it from further damage.

Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou, a Boston-based author and pastor who grew up in St. Louis, has been participating in the protests. He has been arrested twice.

As he walks by the burnt-out convenience store just a few blocks from where Brown died, he says, "Democracy is on fire, and we're called to be firemen."

Asked to elaborate -- is he all right with the looting and burning? -- he says he'd prefer that the protests unfold without the violence and destruction.

"I mean, it is not my preference, no," he said. "I'm more concerned about the conditions that produced this -- the simmering poverty, the simmering oppression, the simmering alienation, the existential crises that black youth feel in America. I am far more concerned about the condition that produced the burning of buildings."

"It appears Ferguson will not imminently simmer down, and a group called Ferguson October hoped to grow the demonstrations with a "national day of action against police brutality" on Wednesday.

Many protesters are preparing for the possibility that the grand jury may decline to indict Wilson. If that's the case, one protester told CNN this week, "Excuse my French, all hell is going to break loose."

That has been a pervasive sentiment since the protests began: Many in Ferguson don't care about reports that a scuffle preceded the shooting and that Brown may have reached for Wilson's gun.

The only facts that matter, they say, is that Wilson shot perhaps as many as 11 times, hitting Brown six times above the waist. The fatal shots came as he stood roughly 30 feet away from Wilson's police cruiser, and, according to some witnesses, with his hands up in surrender.

It's an unnecessary use of force, say many residents who feel Wilson aimed to kill, not arrest, Brown.

Marquita Rogers, a 27-year-old mother of two who lives a few blocks from the Canfield Green subdivision where Brown died, said in August, when the protests were at their ugliest, that she didn't care what Brown did before encountering Wilson.

"Jaywalking? Smarting off? Stealing cigars? Running? You're not supposed to die for that," she said.

Her neighbors, Arvid Wilkerson, 22, and Patricia Pendelton, also predicted during August interviews -- days after a grand jury started hearing evidence in the case and the Justice Department announced an independent investigation -- that the turmoil in Ferguson would only worsen if Wilson wasn't indicted.

"If this police officer don't get no kind of charge," said Pendelton, 41, a nurse, shaking her head, "they think it's chaos now?"

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Oct-23-2014 128 0
New Jersey man was busted for allegedly selling heroin under a variety of brand names — such as "Ebola."

Barnabas Davis, 47, of Toms River, was arrested Monday after officers found him with 633 wax folds of heroin and about 40 grams of crack cocaine, the Toms River Police Department announced Wednesday.

The individual doses of heroin were packaged separately with stamps for a variety of brand names, according to Officer Ralph Stocco.

These names, often offensive, make it easier for customers to ask for a particular type of the highly addictive drug.

"Different dealers have different potencies and products. Many times they are labeled with catchy phrases," Stocco told the Daily News. "In the past we have had Bin Laden, Hello Kitty, D.O.A., Twin Towers, 911, gumball, pow, etc."

The department's special enforcement team had obtained a search warrant during an investigation into the distribution of heroin from the rear suites of a Ramada Inn located at 2373 Route 9 in Toms River.

Stocco said hotel staff had no knowledge of the drug operation and have cooperated fully with law enforcement.

"For perspective, the main hotel sits on the site and where this occurred is at a separate other building on the property as an 'extended stay suite.' It is 100 to 200 yards from the main hotel," he told The News.

The suspect's last known address is the Briar Knolls Condominium Complex in Toms River.

Davis, also known as Hammer, was charged with possession of heroin, possession of heroin with intent to distribute, possession of crack cocaine and possession of crack cocaine with intent to distribute.

He is being held at the Ocean County Jail in lieu of $300,000 bail.

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Oct-23-2014 164 0
WHO:
National Bar Association

WHAT:
DAY OF ACTION IN HOUSTON
Know Your Rights Because It Could Save Your Life Town Hall

WHEN:
Friday, October 24, 2014 at 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

WHERE:
Thurgood Marshall School of Law
Room 105-107
3100 Cleburne St.
Houston, TX 77004

WASHINGTON, DC – In light of the recent incidents involving police officers’ use of excessive and deadly force which has caused the deaths of Jordan Baker, Kenneth Brian Releford and Mark Vincent Ames, (Houston, Texas) and the injuries to Robert R. Tolan (Bellaire, Texas), Marquise Jones (San Antonio, TX), Clinton Allen (Dallas, Texas), Jermaine Darden (Ft. Worth, Texas), Michael Brown (Ferguson, MO), Ezell Ford and Omar Abrego (Los Angeles, CA), Rodney Mitchell (Sarasota, FL), Eric Garner (Staten Island, NY), John Crawford (Beavercreek, OH), and a number of other unnamed, and unarmed, individuals, the National Bar Association (NBA) is hosting a “Know Your Rights, Because It Could Save Your Life Town Hall” meeting in Houston, Texas, to educate the community and call for justice in the killings of Jordan Baker, Marquise Jones, Kenneth Brian Releford, Mark Vincent Ames and the injuries to Robert Tolan.

“During the Town Hall, attendees will learn how the Fourth Amendment (Search & Seizure) of the United States Constitution applies to them, whether it is legal to record the police activity and how citizens should behave/respond if, and when, they interface with police officers. In addition, panelists will address issues of inequality and racial bias in policing, the justice system, and violence against members of minority communities,” stated Pamela J. Meanes, President of the National Bar Association.

The National Bar Association joins The Greater Houston Coalition for Justice in saying, “Houston, We Have a Problem.” From 2000-2011 there were over 2,100 use of force complaints filed against Houston Police Officers. From 2008-2012, Houston Police Department (HPD) officers shot 121 people, 52 fatally, 10 of whom were unarmed. HPD officers have been cleared by Harris County grand juries 288 consecutive times for shootings of civilians. The Greater Houston Coalition for Justice filed 48 excessive and deadly force complaints against Houston Police Officers with the Department of Justice (DOJ) in Washington from 2007-2012. No action has been taken by the DOJ!

A September 2013 report on CNN titled “Who’s Policing the Houston Police Department” states that 2/3 of HPD Officers, fired or suspended, get their jobs back or their suspensions overturned. This is the highest rate in the country! Houston City Councilman and former Police Chief C.O. "Brad" Bradford has publicly stated that the citizens of Houston have lost faith in the city's oversight of the use of force by police officers. “We rely on the police to keep us safe and treat us all fairly, regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin or religion. But sometimes the police go too far; using excessive force, engaging in racial profiling or illegally restricting an individuals rights. The above statistics demonstrate that the Houston Police Department has simply gone too far,” said President Meanes. “More importantly, these statistics demonstrate that police brutality is a national epidemic.”

Accordingly, the National Bar Association is headed to Houston, Texas to call for a full and independent federal investigation into the Baker, Releford and Ames cases. “These families deserve a full and fair investigation and we plan to stand behind them until a proper investigation is conducted,” President Meanes stated.

The National Bar Association renews its call for the U.S. Department of Justice to conduct a fair and impartial investigation into deaths involving police in Staten Island, New York; Dallas, Texas; San Antonio, Texas; and Beavercreek, Ohio.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL BAR ASSOCIATION
The National Bar Association was founded in 1925 and is the nation's oldest and largest national network of predominantly African-American attorneys and judges. It represents the interests of approximately 60,000 lawyers, judges, law professors and law students.The NBA is organized around 23 substantive law sections, 9 divisions, 12 regions and 80 affiliate chapters throughout the United States and around the world. For more information, visit: www.nationalbar.org

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Matt Pearce Oct-23-2014 132 0
With a grand jury decision looming on whether a white police officer should face charges in the killing of an unarmed black 18-year-old in Ferguson, Mo., the investigation has sprung a few leaks.

New details from the inquiry into Michael Brown's Aug. 9 death — all provided by unidentified sources and which seem to support Officer Darren Wilson's story of what happened that day — have emerged in St. Louis and national news outlets in recent days.

The details and reports say that Brown struggled with Wilson in his patrol car and that Wilson's gun went off in the car before a brief foot chase ensued.

Wilson ultimately shot Brown several times, and Brown's body lay in the street for more than four hours, kindling a rage on the streets of Ferguson and St. Louis that has yet to wholly subside.

The leaks seemed to create a fresh rupture in trust with black St. Louis-area officials and protesters, who said Wednesday that they were upset with what they saw as another breakdown in the justice system because information from the supposedly secret grand jury continued to appear in the media. The grand jury's decision is expected in November.

"There is no way there should be reports from all these anonymous sources and these 'leaks' ....This is supposed to play out in the courts and the justice system, and not the media," said Patricia Bynes, a Ferguson resident and prominent voice in the protest movement. Quoting a popular chant, she added, "The whole damn system is guilty as hell."

The New York Times reported that investigators found Brown's blood on Wilson's gun, on the interior door panel of Wilson's car and on Wilson's uniform.

The Washington Post reported that several black witnesses had provided details in secret grand jury testimony that supported Wilson's account.

And the official autopsy report, obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, showed a gunshot wound to Brown's hand that appeared to be from close range. That seemed to support the officer's account that there was a struggle for his gun inside his patrol car.

According to the preliminary police account, which was included in the autopsy report, the confrontation began when Wilson spotted Brown and a friend walking in the street:

Wilson "observed the two individuals, he requested that they get out of the roadway. The deceased became belligerent towards Officer Wilson," the police account said.

"As Officer Wilson attempted to exit out of his patrol vehicle the deceased pushed his door shut and began to struggle with Officer Wilson, during the struggle the Officers weapon was un-holstered. The weapon discharged during the struggle.

"The deceased then ran down the roadway. Officer Wilson then began to chase the deceased. As he was giving chase to the deceased, the deceased turned around and ran towards officer Wilson.

"Officer Wilson had his service weapon drawn, as the deceased began to run towards him, he discharged his service weapon several times," the police account said.

Benjamin Crump, the attorney for Brown's family, said he was not surprised by the autopsy report's details.

"Several independent witnesses indicated there was a brief altercation between Michael Brown and Officer Wilson at the patrol car," Crump said in a statement. "What we want to know is why Officer Wilson shot Michael Brown multiple times and killed him even though he was more than 20 feet away from his patrol car; this is the crux of the matter!"

But other activists and St. Louis-area officials saw the leaks as the crux of the matter, deriding news outlets for reporting the leaked information and investigative officials for leaking it.

"A non-transparent grand jury process and a leaky investigation is not the way the outcome of this important case should be determined," tweeted St. Louis Alderman Antonio French, who participated in many Ferguson demonstrations. "These leaks do not help restore people's faith in the justice system. Quite the opposite."

St. Louis County prosecutor's office spokesman Ed Magee said his office probably wouldn't investigate the leaks because prosecutors could not force journalists to divulge their sources and because the information could be coming from federal officials in Washington.

"There's really nothing to investigate," Magee said Wednesday. "We don't have control over anybody leaking anything. All we can control is people in our office and the grand jury, and it's not coming from us or the grand jury."

He said that "you can tell by the information they have" that the leaks are not coming from the grand jury or the prosecutor's office, citing reports using sourcing language such as "officials briefed on the investigation."

"We've got a joint investigation going on (with federal officials), so we're sharing information and we've been sharing information the whole time," Magee said.

A representative for the Justice Department, which is also investigating Brown's death and the Ferguson Police Department, did not immediately comment.

Chris King, managing editor of the St. Louis American, a newspaper for black audiences, said law enforcement officials had offered him the leaks, saying "they had been briefed on the evidence and it didn't look good for Michael Brown supporters," but he declined and decried "third-party hearsay" in an editorial for the paper.

"Tensions are so high that preparations for riots, if Wilson walks free, are discussed in sober terms in local and national media and on street corners," the American said in its editorial. "The editors of these powerful publications have shown a lapse in judgment and ethics that is not only shameful, but actually dangerous. We declare a mistrial in the court of public opinion."

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Oct-22-2014 168 0
As of Tuesday night, Dallas nurse Amber Vinson no longer has the Ebola virus in her body, according to a statement from her family.

She is steadily regaining her strength and her spirits are high.

"Amber and our family are ecstatic to receive this latest report on her condition," said Vinson's mom, Debra Berry. "We all know that further treatment will be necessary as Amber continues to regain strength, but these latest developments have truly answered prayers and bring our family one step closer to reuniting with her at home."

Her family and friends were stung by suggestions that Vinson, who volunteered to care for Thomas Eric Duncan – the first patient diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S. – had been reckless in flying to Cleveland over the Columbus Day holiday for a weekend of wedding planning.

Vinson had checked with the CDC before flying, according to NBC News.

"She's infected for doing something so selfless. We should be applauding her courage," Vinson's friend Emilia Sykes tells PEOPLE.

Vinson's colleague Nina Pham was just four years out of nursing school and knew little about Ebola beyond what she had studied in class and read about in the 1994 bestseller The Hot Zone when patient Duncan was brought to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital where she worked.

But, with her reputation for compassionate caring, she was tapped to care for Duncan, 42, a Liberian national who had unwittingly brought the virus to the U.S. when he arrived in Dallas on Sept. 20.

"It wasn't just her job," Pham's former classmate at Texas Christian University, Lacey Mabry, tells PEOPLE. "It was her calling to help this person." Duncan died Oct. 8.

Now, Pham is fighting for her life in a special isolation unit at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, after contracting the virus herself. In news that is sure to cheer her family, the NIH said Oct. 21 that her condition had been upgraded to good from fair.

Meanwhile, Pham's church, Our Lady of Fatima in Fort Worth, Texas, is planning a fundraiser to help the family. Nina's mom, Diana, "asks that we continue to pray."

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Oct-22-2014 198 0
A 33-year-old Georgia man thought he’d found love online and moved to Kentucky to be with her, according to police.

But it wasn’t exactly true love for the Walton County man. Cornelius Jefferson’s new girlfriend wasn’t who she claimed to be online, police said. Jefferson allegedly assaulted the woman around 4:20 Tuesday morning, according to the Laurel County Sheriff’s Department in Kentucky.

“The argument was allegedly because the male subject didn’t think she was like she was on the Internet,” the sheriff’s department posted on its Facebook page. “He allegedly choked her with both hands around the neck and threw food on her and left the scene on foot with two suitcases.”

Deputies located Jefferson walking nearby and he was arrested, according to police. He was charged with fourth-degree assault.

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Oct-22-2014 179 0
Ferguson Police Officer Darren WIlson's account of the confrontation in which Michael Brown was fatally shot has reportedly been leaked, with an independent medical examiner's report backing up his version of events.

Brown had marijuana in his system and was shot at close range in the hand, backing up claims by a police officer that that there was a violent struggle between the Ferguson, Mo. teen and the cop, an independent medical examiner told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The report supports Wilson's account, given after he shot and killed the 18-year-old on Aug. 9. Witnesses claimed the teen was surrendering when the cop fired. Police maintained Wilson only used his gun after Brown tried to take it – a life-and-death fight inside a police SUV.

A source familiar with Wilson’s version of events, as told to investigators, said the 'incredibly strong' teen punched Wilson and then pressed the barrel of the cop’s gun against the officer’s hip and fought for control of the trigger, the Post-Dispatch said.

Once Wilson finally had the gun, he fired. But Brown’s hand blocked the mechanism, according to the St. Louis newspaper.

Wilson eventually got two shots off, striking Brown in the hand. He ran off, then regrouped and charged the officer; setting up the final fatal confrontation, according to Wilson’s leaked statement.

Separately, St. Louis medical examiner Dr. Michael Graham – not part of the official investigation – reviewed the autopsy report on Tuesday and told the Post-Dispatch its finding “does support that there was a significant altercation at the car.”

A forensic pathologist in San Francisco, Dr. Judy Melinek, said the autopsy “supports the fact that this guy is reaching for the gun, if he has gunpowder particulate material in the wound.”

Brown’s blood was found on Wilson’s gun, according to the Post-Dispatch.

Melinek also said Brown was facing the officer, not running away, when he was shot twice in the head, twice more in the chest and once in the upper right arm, according to the Post-Dispatch.

A St. Louis County grand jury will decide if Wilson will be charged in the shooting.

The shooting stirred three months of unrest in the St. Louis area and gave rise to a popular chant among protesters: “Hands up, don’t shoot.”

Turns out, that may not be true at all.

The report supports the account given by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, who shot and killed Brown.

Wilson’s account of the messy shooting was revealed for the first time Tuesday by the Post-Dispatch, which alleges the officer stopped the teen on a Ferguson street after realizing he matched a radio alert of a robbery suspect.

That runs counter to Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson’s assertion in August that the stop had nothing to do with the heist.

Video showed Brown stealing a $48.99 box of cigars from a convenience store in a strong arm robbery.

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AP Oct-21-2014 202 0
The Django Unchained actress who claimed racial profiling by police last month has been charged with lewd conduct, according to TMZ, which broke the story initially.

Daniele Watts and her boyfriend Brian James Lucas were each reportedly charged with lewd conduct, a misdemeanor conduct charge that could result in six months in county jail and a $1,000 fine.

The couple were stopped after eyewitnesses called the Los Angeles Police Department complaining of a couple having sex in public during daylight. They claimed they were apprehended because Watts is black and Lucas is white, garnering national news attention until a recording of the incident was leaked to TMZ.

The City Attorney's office could not immediately be reached for comment.

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Oct-21-2014 249 0
The National Black Pre-Law Conference and Law Fair will host its 10th annual celebration in honor of empowering aspiring black lawyers.

The free event will be held Friday and Saturday in the Houston Marriott Westchase. Late registration begins today and ends Wednesday.

The conference brings together aspiring lawyers, parents, supporters, friends, law students, judges, and law school representatives to help students begin their law school career with “insider” information and encouragement on their journey to become successful attorneys.

The conference provides participants with access to over 100 law schools that participate in the law fair. Other events include workshops and panel discussions pertaining to law school, networking and mentorship opportunities, professional business image and etiquette training, town hall meetings, law school admissions test (LSAT) preparation clinics, and diagnostic LSAT administrations.

State Bar of Texas Immediate Past President Lisa Tatum will speak as a panelist during a Saturday workshop on legal careers. The panel discussion will focus on what law firm partners do, how they got to where they are, and their advice for meeting upcoming challenges.

Tatum will be joined by moderator Erica Edwards-O’Neal, director of diversity and inclusion and senior director of career services of the Touro Law Center (Central Islip, New York); Tiffany Bingham Briscoe, partner in Vorys (Houston); Jonathan Cox, partner in The Cox Pradia Law Firm P.L.L.C. (Houston); Daniella Landers, partner in Sutherland (Houston); Demetra Liggins, partner in Thompson & Knight LLP (Houston); Patricia Rosier, managing partner in the Law Office of Rosier & Associates (Upper Marlboro, Maryland); Daryl K. Washington, partner in the Law Offices of Daryl K. Washington, P.C., Attorneys and Counselors at Law (Dallas); and Marlene C. Williams, partner in Jackson Walker L.L.P. (Houston).

General admission is free and everyone is welcome. For more information on how to register or a complete schedule of events, visit blackprelawconference.org.

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