NORTH CAROLINA-DEPUTY SHOOTING
Family to see more recordings of N. Carolina deputy shooting
ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (AP) — The family of a Black man who was fatally shot by sheriff’s deputies in North Carolina is expected to view more than 18 minutes of body camera video of the incident. County officials said the recordings will be shown to relatives of Andrew Brown Jr. at 3 p.m. Tuesday. Brown was behind the wheel of his car in Elizabeth City when he was shot on April 21. Deputies were serving a drug-related search warrant. A prosecutor said Brown’s car made “contact” with officers before the shooting began. But Brown’s family says he was driving away and called it an unjustified “execution.”
RACIAL INJUSTICE-NORTH CAROLINA
NC bill demands family access to bodycam footage in 5 days
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina senators are interested in altering parts of the state’s 2016 police body camera law in light of what’s happened recently following the fatal police shooting of Andrew Brown Jr. in Elizabeth City. A measure approved by a Senate committee on Monday would direct law enforcement to let family members of a person who died watch unedited officer body camera footage within five business days of any request. A sheriff or police department could ask a judge to redact video. Family members of Brown have spent the past few weeks in a legal battle to see the videos of the fatal encounter.
Amazon announces new distribution center for North Carolina
SMITHFIELD, N.C. (AP) — Johnston County officials say Amazon is planning a $100 million distribution and fulfillment center. The News & Observer of Raleigh reports the county made the announcement on Monday. Amazon plans to build a 620,000-square-foot warehouse in Smithfield by 2022 that will create 500 jobs paying at least $15 an hour. The announcement by Amazon comes less than two weeks after Apple announced that it was building its first East Coast campus in North Carolina, investing $1 billion for a site in Research Triangle Park.
Bipartisan bloc in NC House OKs tougher rioting punishments
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina House has approved more severe punishments for rioting. The chamber voted on Monday for the measure, which stemmed in part following mayhem in North Carolina cities last summer when largely peaceful demonstrations following the murder of George Floyd turned violent. House Speaker Tim Moore cited those demonstrations and the violence at the U.S. Capitol in January while pushing for the bill. The measure also would allow property owners to go to court and seek three times the monetary damage caused by a rioter. There are also new bond and pretrial release rules on rioting and looting charges. The bill now heads to the Senate.
House passes bill to bar Cooper from mandating COVID shot
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina House members on Monday approved a plan to curb the governor’s ability to mandate COVID-19 vaccines through executive action. Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper has shown no desire to exercise that power. The measure put forward by GOP Rep. Keith Kidwell would also bar state public health authorities and licensing agencies from requiring North Carolinians to get vaccinated in order to obtain a license. It’s perhaps the most mild of a string of anti-vaccination proposals brought forward by Republican state lawmakers. Ten House Democrats supported the plan that now heads to the Senate.
NC bill exempts lawmakers, others from concealed gun limits
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Legislation approved by a North Carolina House committee would allow elected leaders who hold concealed weapons permits to carry their handguns in areas prohibited to the rest of the public. Local prosecutors and judges already receive special exemptions to rules preventing concealed permit holders from bringing guns inside government buildings. The measure that advanced on Monday would add more people to the list as long as they’re performing official duties. It would apply to lawmakers inside the Legislative Building. The legislative complex has undergone security upgrades in recent years.
NC House OK’s bill to prohibit shackling of pregnant inmates
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina House lawmakers on Monday unanimously approved a bill that would prohibit physical restraints being used on incarcerated pregnant women before, during and after they give birth. The proposal also requires women to be provided sufficient food and dietary supplements during their pregnancy. Rep. Kristin Baker wrote the bill in response to a concern she heard from a physician who delivered a baby a couple years ago from a woman who was shackled and unable to hold her infant. The proposal will now go to the state Senate for further consideration.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-BELATED COMMENCEMENTS
‘Last hurrah’: 2020 college grads finally get ceremonies
WESTERVILLE, Ohio (AP) — Scores of college campuses around the U.S. are offering their 2020 graduates a chance to experience the in-person commencements they missed out on because of the pandemic. Some of the students participating say it means a lot to them to get the traditional pomp and circumstance, even a year late and amid health precautions. Organizers say it’s important to honor those students and their experience. Some campuses are inviting 2020 graduates to join commencements for the Class of 2021. Others are hosting separate events for them this spring or later this year. Many are limiting guests and requiring masks and social distancing.
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