- Created on 16 May 2013
A violinist was recently released from the Atlanta City Jail after an impromptu violin concert inside the Five Points station in downtown Atlanta.
Juan Pablo Chavez a violinist who has performed in cities across the country without any previous problems was jailed for five days and charged with misdemeanor panhandling and vending without a permit for selling CDs.
During Chavez's performance, he tried to explain to an officer that he was from out of town, and was unaware he breaking any laws.
"Cop picked me up, grabbed me, slammed me against the wall, messed up my right shoulder," Chavez told WXIA.
According to MARTA officials, Chavez was not only violating MARTA policy but was breaking Georgia state law.
"We love music. We love musicians," MARTA spokesman Lyle Harris said. "But the one thing we can't tolerate is people who are going on the system and breaking the law."
The arresting officer was responding to a passenger complaint about the violinist. Chavez was then placed under arrest after not leaving the MARTA station when order to do so.
- Created on 16 May 2013
(CNN) -- New Orleans police said they arrested a suspect in the Mother's Day shooting that left 19 people wounded this week.
In a post on its Facebook page, the police department identified the man taken into custody as Akein Scott, 19. It did not provide any more details on the arrest.
A SWAT team was used during the arrest Wednesday night in east New Orleans, CNN affiliate WDSU reported .
The shooting, during a festive Mother's Day parade, renewed concerns about crime in the city.
It was the third holiday this year when guns have been fired into crowds, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said.
A January 21 shooting near a Martin Luther King Day parade left five wounded. Four people were hurt in a February Mardi Gras attack, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.
Police identified the teen as a suspect Monday after footage of the shooting was released.
Images of the parade, released by police Monday, show a man standing at the outskirts of a packed parade route. A moment later, he charges toward the crowd.
The surveillance camera images show the panicked crowd scrambling for cover. The man runs away, leaving people and bicycles scattered on the ground behind him.
A $10,000 reward had been offered in the case.
CNN's Chandler Friedman contributed to this report.
- Created on 15 May 2013
(CNN) -- The 911 call is accusatory. The woman flatly tells the dispatcher she just witnessed several police officers in East Bakersfield, California, beat a man to death.
The woman -- identified by the local newspaper as Salina Quair, 34 -- happened upon the scene as she left Kern Medical Center, where the father of four would later die.
"There's a man laying on the floor, and your police officers beat the sh-t out of him and killed him," said Quair, according to a tape of the 911 call obtained by CNN affiliate KERO-TV.
"I'm right here on the corner of Flower and Palm right now and you have one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight sheriffs. The guy was laying on the floor, and eight sheriffs ran up and started beating him up with sticks. The man is dead laying right here, right now," she continues.
The sheriff's office has named the seven deputies involved in the incident, including a sergeant, while the California Highway Patrol has yet to name its two officers who responded to the scene.
The area is largely residential, packed with one-story homes and small apartment complexes. In addition to the hospital, East Bakersfield High School and the county coroner's office are within two blocks of the intersection where David Sal Silva died.
The Kern County Sheriff's Office has said it will not comment until the investigation is complete, but a news release says the incident began May 7 just before midnight.
A deputy responded to a call that a man, later identified as Silva, 33, was lying on the ground, possibly intoxicated.
Silva was "uncooperative," according to the sheriff's office, even after a canine was deployed.
"The suspect continued to actively resist the deputy and the K-9. Additional deputies arrived on scene, along with two CHP officers who responded to assist. The suspect continued to resist and received baton strikes from the deputies attempting to take him into custody," according to the sheriff's news release.
After Silva was restrained, police requested medical assistance for his injuries, the release said. He was having trouble breathing and was taken across the street to the hospital.
"While being treated at KMC, the suspect was pronounced dead at about 12:44 a.m.," the news release said.
Several witnesses have painted a more brutal picture, saying that Silva was crying for help and officers continued to beat him until he fell silent. Others have said they captured the incident on their cell phones. Two of those witnesses hired attorneys after police confiscated their phones, KERO reported.
The only video released thus far is from a security camera, and the quality is poor. It appears to show two men scuffling for about two minutes before another man arrives. The two men appear to repeatedly hit the third man as he's on his knees and later lying on the ground.
Police cars arrive and officers gather around the man on the ground, but their actions aren't clear. The video is grainy, and the blur of light and shadows makes it difficult to determine what is happening.
Witnesses told CNN they were awakened by the incident. One witness, who asked not to be identified, described a chaotic scene.
"He was asking for help. He was screaming with pain. He only got to ask for help like three times," he said. "Those hits were brutal."
Sheriff Donnie Youngblood promised a fair investigation into the incident.
"I'm waiting till this investigation is done so I can look at it objectively and decide whether we did something wrong, and If we did, I'll stand up and tell you that we did. If we didn't, I'll stand up and tell you that we didn't," he told KERO.
In a news release Tuesday, the Kern County Sheriff's Office said that Youngblood has requested the FBI's help in analyzing "two cell phones pursuant to a search warrant related to the ... death of David Silva." It was not immediately clear which phones these are or what "forensic analysis" is being done, though the office did say that Bakersfield police saw one of the phones on video from the incident, but not the other one.
Youngblood also asked the FBI to conduct a "parallel" investigation into the incident.
"I think it's the right thing for the public and I think it's the right thing for this organization," the sheriff told reporters Tuesday.
In November, the family of Jose Lucero, 33, won a $4.5 million civil judgment against the Kern County Sheriff's Office, according to The Bakersfield Californian. After the mentally ill Lucero had made delusional 911 calls, four deputies beat, pepper-sprayed and Tasered him, killing him in front of his parents, according to the newspaper's report about the 2010 incident.
CNN's Eliott C. McLaughlin and Stephanie Elam contributed to this report.
- Created on 16 May 2013
(NNPA) – For Malcolm Shabazz, grandson of Malcolm X, trouble seemed to come easy.
His troubles began in 1997, when at age 12 he pleaded guilty to setting fire to the apartment of his grandmother, Betty Shabazz, that resulted in her death in New York. As a result, young Malcolm spent four years in juvenile detention centers.
In 2003, he was back behind bars—this time as a result of an attempted robbery. And in 2006, it was for punching a hole in a donut shop wall in Yonkers, N.Y..
His troubles ended for good in Mexico City last Wednesday, when the 28-year-old was killed after being beaten outside of a bar, according to sources close to Shabazz.
Well-known publicist and family friend, Terrie Williams of New York, confirmed Malcolm’s death via Twitter and Facebook.
“I’m confirming, per US Embassy, on behlf of family, the tragic death of Malcolm Shabazz, grandson of Malcom X,” Williams tweeted.
Shabazz was reportedly traveling to Mexico City with RUMEC, a Mexican labor organization based in California, when he was beaten to death in an attempted robbery, according to Juan Ruiz, a member of RUMEC.
Ruiz, who spoke to the political news website Talking Points Memo was one of the first to get in contact with RUMEC leader Miguel Suarez, who was with Shabazz at the time of his death. Suarez had been deported to Mexico from the U.S. last month and Shabazz reportedly traveled to Mexico to support the labor rights activist.
Reporters from the Associated Press spoke to Suarez who said Shabazz was beaten outside of a bar in downtown Mexico City after the owner asked to two to pay a $1,200 bar tab for drinks, music and dances with women inside the establishment.
The owners of the club hassled the two, demanding the cash, according to Suarez and the two were separated. A man with a gun then took Suarez into a room and Shabazz was left in the hall. Suarez reportedly managed to get away and left the bar in a cab. When he came back, he told reporters he found Shabazz outside of the bar.
“He was in shock. His face was messed up,” Suarez told the AP. “He was alive.”
Suarez later called the police and took Shabazz to the hospital, but Shabazz died soon after as a result of blunt-force trauma.
Two waiters have since been arrested in connection with Shabazz’s death.
In a statement, the family of Shabazz expressed grief, but added that the slain 28-year-old can now rest “in peace in the arms of his grandparents and the safety of God.”
The stated released through Williams said, “We are deeply saddened by the passing of our beloved El Hajj Malcolm El Shabazz. To all who knew him, he offered kindness, encouragement and hope for a better tomorrow.”
In February, as he traveled to Iran, it was widely reported that Shabazz had been arrested by the FBI. Though the Shabazz family later deemed the news report untruthful, it didn’t come as a surprise given the record of Malcolm X’s namesake.
Like his grandfather Malcolm X, whose own young life was littered with troubles, Malcolm Shabazz was no stranger to the legal system.
When Malcolm was young his mother Qubilah, the second of Malcolm X’s six daughters, was charged with planning to murder Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan with her boyfriend. She believed Farrakhan played a role in the assassination of her father, a charge the Nation of Islam leader has consistently denied.
Though her charges were dropped and she was sent to a rehabilitation center in Texas instead of prison, Malcolm was sent to live with his grandmother in Yonkers, N.Y., at age 10.
Two years later, after an attempt at living with his mother in San Antonio failed, young Malcolm set fire to the apartment he and his grandmother shared. The fire that killed of Betty Shabazz, 61, the widow of Malcolm X.
Her grandson was considered schizophrenic and paranoid. He said he heard voices telling him to set things on fire. He was sentenced to 18 months in a juvenile detention center. The initial sentence led to Malcolm spending the next four years of his youth in and out of detention centers.
According to a 2003 New York Times profile, he joined a gang, sold drugs and built a rapport among the street thugs of Manhattan. In 2002, he skipped bail after an arrest for an attempted robbery in Middletown, N.Y., and spent another three and a half years in the penal system, this time in Great Meadow Correctional Facility, a prison in Washington County New York, Malcolm was 18.
Malcolm told the Times of his plans for the future, as he studied Islam behind bars, again, like his grandfather before him. He is quoted as saying, “My name will bring attention. People know Malcolm Shabazz, whether you like me or not.”
He found inspiration in his grandfather’s life, as the two both got off to similarly rocky starts. “He didn’t know he was going to be Malcolm X. He didn’t know that,” Shabazz said in the 2003 New York Times interview. “But with me, I know what I want to do. I know what I want to be.”
According to the New York Amsterdam News, Shabazz was in the process of writing two books and was attending Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. He is survived by two daughters, his mother, and several aunts.
- Created on 15 May 2013
The Atlanta Beltline, a comprehensive revitalization effort by the City of Atlanta, received a $600,000 federal grant to assist in the sustainability project of a 22-mile corridor of parks, multi-use trails and transit.
The grant, funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, was awarded this week to go towards cleaning initiatives on the northeastern section of the Beltline (Monroe Drive to Buford Highway).
"We are thrilled to showcase the project to a national audience," chief operating officer and interim leader of Atlanta BeltLine Inc. Lisa Gordon said. "We are looking forward to sharing and learning best practices with projects from around the country."
The Beltline will be a feature of the biannual National Brownfields Conference, which opens May 15 at the Georgia World Congress Center. Ryan Gravel, considered a visionary of the Beltline project, will be the featured speaker at the conference's opening session.
The Atlanta Beltline will be a network of public parks and trails re-using historic railroad corridors circling downtown and connecting 45 neighborhoods to one another.