F.B.I. Begins Civil Rights Investigation into Police Beating of Suspect in California
On Friday, ten San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies were placed on paid leave after a news camera taped them attacking a fleeing suspect. The suspect, Francis Pusok, attempted to flee pursuing authorities on horseback following a high-speed chase and, later, a foot chase. Pusok was, subsequently, apprehended, treated at a hospital for injuries and charged with a number of criminal offenses. After watching the video, San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon stated he believed the officers’ use of force to detain Pusok was “excessive.” Subsequently, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has begun an investigation to determine if Pusok’s civil rights were violated during his apprehension.
New Mexico Passes New Law Limiting Civil Forfeiture
On Friday, in New Mexico, Gov. Susana Martinez signed a bill essentially ending the practice of civil forfeiture. Civil forfeiture allows law enforcement agencies to possess property tied to crime without filing charges or securing a conviction for a crime. It has been criticized for creating a financial incentive for law enforcement agencies to pursue certain investigations and for violating individuals’ property and due process rights. The new law prevents law enforcement agencies, some who asked Governor Martinez to veto the bill, from seizing property or money from an individual without first securing a conviction.
Hundreds Attend Funeral for Walter L. Scott
On Saturday, a funeral for Walter L. Scott was held. Hundreds of mourners attended Scott’s funeral, a black man, who’s killing by a white police officer was caught on camera in South Carolina. Upon being stopped in his vehicle by Michael T. Slagger for a broken taillight, Scott began running from his vehicle. Video revealed that Slagger shot a fleeing Scott in the back eight times. Consequently, the killing has reignited the national debate on racially discriminatory policing and use of force by police. At the funeral, the pastor, Rev. George D. Hamilton, called for political action so that African-Americans “don’t have to be scared every time they get pulled over.”
Hillary Clinton’s Presidential Campaign and her Economic Policies
On Sunday, Hillary Clinton formally announced her candidacy for the presidency in 2016. Throughout her career, Clinton has cultivated a relationship with Wall Street and the financial industry. This has included working with Wall Street as a New York senator, developing relationships with the financial industry during her 2008 presidential campaign and being First Lady during the financially prosperous 1990s. However, Clinton’s relationship with Wall Street is problematic for the liberal segment of the Democratic Party who are interested in more progressive economic goals than those preferred by the financial industry. Recently, however, Clinton has taken up economic issues relevant to the Democratic Party’s liberal wing, such as income inequality, equal pay and minimum wage. How Clinton balances her relationship with Wall Street while also embracing progressive economic ideals will be something to watch during her campaign.