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Feb 17, 2022
In CREATIVE JUSTICE
If you're interested in a justice-related art experience, you should definitely check out The Movement Series! "In spring 2022, The Movement Series brings to Greater Boston audiences three programs that center social justice, including performances by Colombia’s Sankofa Danzafro, Marc Bamuthi Joseph’s multimedia project The Just and the Blind, and theAlvin Ailey American Dance Theater. This powerful three-part experience is enhanced by community programming. Join us for these performances, anchored in dance and multimedia, that take audiences on provocative, spiritual and exhilarating journeys." Here's a sneak peek!
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Reyets Curated Content
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Feb 08, 2022
In NEWS
A Black doctor is suing JPMorgan Chase and two employees at the bank's Sugar Land, Texas, branch for racial discrimination after she says she was refused service to open a bank account. Dr. Malika Mitchell-Stewart, 34, completed her residency at the end of last year and planned to open a bank account with a $16,780.16 check at the Chase bank in Sugar Land, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit claims that when Mitchell-Stewart presented her check to one of the bank's employees, they began to ask questions challenging the validity of the check as well as Mitchell-Stewart's employment as a doctor. The employee then allegedly told Mitchell-Stewart that they had to verify the check with the bank manager, the second employee named in the case, who is not actually a bank manager but an associate banker and lead teller-operations specialist, according to the lawsuit. The second employee allegedly told Mitchell-Stewart that the check was fraudulent without providing justification before turning her away. Mitchell-Stewart then left the bank to avoid being arrested and "had an adverse emotional reaction over this humiliation," according to the lawsuit. "What Dr. Mitchell-Stewart was reminded of on this day was that she is a black woman attempting to deposit $16,000 in a predominantly white affluent suburb - Sugarland, Texas in Ft. Bend County," the lawsuit said. "Solely because of her race, Dr. Mitchell-Stewart was discriminated against by members of Chase’s banking staff and denied services provided to non-African American customers of Chase." #texas #huston #banking #chase #economicjustice #bankingwhileblakc #racisim
Black doctor sues JPMorgan Chase for racial discrimination after being denied service at Texas branch content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 29, 2022
In NEWS
The Virginia Senate voted Thursday to require police officers to tell drivers why they are being pulled over before requiring them to present their driver’s license and registration. Democrats, who unanimously backed the measure over opposition from Republicans, framed the change as a limited step that could hopefully deescalate traffic stops. “When people are stopped, they generally want to know why,” Sen. Scott Surovell, D-Fairfax, who proposed the measure, told his colleagues. Surovell described the bill as a minor change to state code. He said that if an officer did not follow the new rule, the only legal ramifications would be that the officer would be unable to write a ticket for failure to provide identification, which he said carries a $10 fine and is seldom used. Republican lawmakers unanimously opposed the measure, arguing that it could make police work more dangerous. “I don’t think it’s a terrible imposition on motorists or anybody else to have to provide their driver’s license and registration when a police officer asks for it,” said Sen. John Cosgrove, R-Chesapeake. “To me, this is just a way for lawyers to get somebody off the hook.” The bill now heads to the House of Delegates, where Republicans hold a majority and are unlikely to advance the measure. #virginia #police #stops #laws
Va. Senate votes to require police to tell drivers why they were pulled over content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 27, 2022
In FILMING THE POLICE
An Arizona House bill would limit when the public could record video of police officers at work. State Rep. John Kavanaugh, a Republican from Fountain Hills, is the sponsor of the bill. HB 2319 would make it illegal to video record police activity without the officer's permission unless the camera is at least 15 feet away. There are exceptions if someone is inside an enclosed structure on private property. "I was contacted by police officers in Tucson," Kavanagh said. Kavanagh said the concern is that cop-watching groups are getting too close, and he is concerned about safety. "The officer doesn't know if this is just a bystander taking a picture or if this is an accomplice or a friend of the person they are arresting and might attack them," Kavanagh said. A first violation would be a petty offense. If the videotaping continued after an officer's verbal warning or it was a repeat offense, the violator could be charged with a misdemeanor. Stacey Champion was issued a criminal citation for crossing a police line after she tried to intervene for a man who was homeless earlier this month. Phoenix police reversed course and declined to pursue charges after Champion's video of the incident was posted on Twitter. Champion said if she had not been recording, "I would probably be in jail or would have gone to jail, most certainly." Kavanagh told ABC15 investigator Melissa Blasius that he may make changes to the bill's wording. "That was certainly not the intent of the bill to stop someone from doing it themselves, and I can easily take care of that," he said. The American Civil Liberties Union opposes the bill, saying people have a First Amendment right to record police activity as long as they are not interfering with law enforcement officers.
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 02, 2022
In NEWS
Minimum wage increases, animal protections, police accountability, cutting and increasing taxes are all part of a series of new laws taking effect across the country on Saturday, the first day of 2022. Some of the laws such as abortion restrictions in New Hampshire or police reform measures passed in Illinois, Oregon and North Carolina address some of the most contentious issues of our time. Others, such as a Maine law passed in the aftermath of a September 2019 explosion that killed a firefighter and injured a number of others, are more narrowly focused and were passed to remedy specific situations. The Connecticut Parentage Act allows unmarried, same-sex or nonbiological parents to establish parenting rights through a simple form that gives parents legal capabilities immediately after a child is born. In Kansas, people will be allowed to buy specialized license plates featuring the “Don’t Tread on Me” and coiled snake symbol featured on what’s known as the Gadsden flag. Critics suggested that the Gadsden flag has become a racist symbol that has been adopted by some far-right groups. #laws #abortion #police #reforms #pay Read More
New laws take effect across US on abortion, policing, taxes content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 02, 2022
Cops BEGGING To Stop Recording Them content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 01, 2022
In NEWS
On Dec. 29, Pennsylvania's highest court confirmed a decision by a trial court that said the smell of cannabis cannot be the sole basis of a warrantless search by police officers. The State Supreme Court said law enforcement can use the smell of marijuana as part of the justification for a search, but it can’t be the only reason. The decision stemmed from an incident in 2018 in which a driver in Allentown was pulled over after Pennsylvania state troopers who say they observed them failing to stop at a solid white line before an overpass. Then a trooper smelled the odor of burnt marijuana through the open window of the vehicle, wrote Chief Justice Max Baer in the majority opinion. Police then searched the vehicle and found a plastic bag with less than one gram of cannabis next to the front center console, with no markings that would have indicated it was purchased from amedical cannabis dispensary. Medical cannabis is legal in Pennsylvania, but not recreational. This search by police was deemed unconstitutional by a trial court based it was solely on the smell of cannabis. The evidence the police procured could not be used in the trial and the small amount of cannabis charge was dismissed. That ruling was upheld by the state Supreme Court in a 5-2 decision. “We reiterate that the record supports the trial court’s conclusion that the troopers searched the car in question based solely on the odor of marijuana coming from it,” wrote Baer in the majority opinion. “We further hold that the odor of marijuana alone does not amount to probable cause to conduct a warrantless search of a vehicle but, rather, may be considered as a factor in examining the totality of the circumstances.” #weed #pennsylvanian #searches
Pa. Supreme Court says warrantless searches not justified by cannabis smell alone content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Jan 01, 2022
In NEWS
Virginia’s attorney general filed a lawsuit Thursday against the town of Windsor, seeking changes in policing and saying that his office’s monthslong investigation uncovered evidence of discriminatory, unconstitutional policing. The Windsor Police came under scrutiny after an incident in December 2020, when police officers threatened and pepper-sprayed Caron Nazario, a Black and Latino military officer, at a traffic stop, an encounter that was caught on camera. Virginia’s attorney general, Mark Herring, said in a statement that “while our investigation was spurred by the egregious treatment against Lt. Nazario that we all saw in bodycam footage, we discovered that this incident was indicative of much larger problems within the department.” Read More
Virginia Sues Town of Windsor, Accusing It of Discriminatory Policing content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 13, 2021
How did this man only get probation for PLANTING BOMBS at a BLM March? content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 12, 2021
In NEWS
The investigation was initiated after two former officers, Cody Weldin and Christopher Tomsic, responded to a Jan. 2020 call that ended with a car being towed from the scene, and the officers allegedly spray-painted a swastika and "happy face" inside the car. At least 85 criminal cases have been thrown out, with potentially hundreds more in jeopardy amidst an investigation into racist, anti-semitic and homophobic text messages sent by at least 12 current and former police officers of the Torrance, California police department. Read More:
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 12, 2021
In COMMUNITY FEED
The murder of George Floyd and the protests that followed fueled hope that the U.S. might finally reckon with systemic racism. Instead, a backlash has even some once strong allies backtracking. Why it matters: A wave of proposed reforms rose up and crashed into the status quo bulkhead. Defund the police plans fizzled.Federal voting rights and police reform bills are stalled. But U.S. history shows the walls of inequality seldom collapse all at once. Instead, cracks emerge and with time turn into larger openings. Though sweeping plans to revamp law enforcement appear dead, for the first time some officers were convicted for use ofexcessive force, including the former officer who killed Floyd. Black, Latino, Asian American and Native American voters cast ballots in record numbers. Activists toppled some statues once honoring former slaveholding Confederates and murderers of Indigenous people. Details: The summer of 2020 saw millions across the U.S. take to the streets to demand that cities and the federal government radically change policing. Multiracial, multiethnic demonstrators called for changes to laws protecting officers from prosecution over allegations of fatal excessive force. Often, those cases involved Black, Native American and Latinomale victims. Demonstrations also called for eradicating racist symbols, from sports mascots to street names of known white supremacists. At first, unlikely allies like Sen. Mitt Romney(R-Utah) and white residents in small towns joined Black Lives Matter marches and calls to end systemic racism. Navajo activists in Gallup, New Mexico, and Mexican Americans in Laredo, Texas, organized demonstrations in support of Black Lives Matter. Yes, but: The ongoing pandemic and violent rhetoric from President Donald Trump, who falsely alleged BLM protesters were linked to Antifa, helped dampen support for racial justice demonstrations. Street violence also erupted in Kenosha, Wisconsin, after a video went viral showing Rusten Sheskey, a white police officer, shooting Jacob Blake, a Black man, multiple times in the back. Police unions fought back and began publicly supporting Republicans like Trump who vowed to fight policing reforms. That starkly divided support for Black Lives Matter along party lines. Rising murder and violent crime rates in some major cities allowed police unions and conservatives to argue BLM demonstrations contributed to crime — despite lack of evidence to support that position. Don't forget: Following the 2020 election, a group led by Russell Vought, a White House budget director under Trump, began a campaign to rid discussions about racism and diversity from public schools under the pretext of attacking critical race theory — a graduate school concept that examines racial inequality baked into the U.S. legal system. Flashback: After the U.S. fought an exhausting civil war over slavery and then emancipated enslaved people, the nation allowed Southern states to roll back civil rights and adopt Jim Crow laws that legalized segregation. Following the Civil Rights Movement and President Lyndon Johnson's Great Society programs to tackle poverty, the nation turned to President Richard Nixon to elevate"law and order" over civil rights. But, but, but: Some states, like Illinois and New Mexico, have passed sweeping police reform bills that banned chokeholds and required officers to wear body cameras. And activists were quick to denounce and draw attention to a rise of anti-Asian American violence that resulted from the COVID pandemic. The intrigue: Voters in cities like New York supported moderates like Eric Adams, a Black former police captain and now mayor-elect, allowing them to emerge as new leaders over more progressive candidates who supported BLM proposals. Some prosecutors stopped pursuing minor crimes amid a court backlog. What to watch: Whether the U.S. will again retreat from addressing systemic racism and ensuring equality for all Americans, regardless of race or ethnicity, in the name of "returning to normal." Read More:
THE SLOW WHEELS OF JUSTICE content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 12, 2021
In LEGAL TALK
The proposed law would let California citizens sue gun manufacturers, similar to how Texas has made it easier for its residents to sue abortion providers. After the U.S. Supreme Court declined to block a Texas state law that bans most abortions there, Gov. Gavin Newsom said he'll push for a new California law that deters the manufacture and sale of assault rifles in the state. In a statement Saturday night, the governor said he was outraged by the court’s failure in a decision Friday to enforce longstanding constitutional protections in favor of abortion rights. But by not striking down the Texas anti-abortion law, which relies on private citizens for enforcement, Newsom argued that the court has endorsed states’ ability to create similar legal mechanisms to safeguard laws from federal court review. In his statement Saturday, Newsom referred to a recent federal court decision that overturned the state’s ban on assault rifles in which the judge compared the weapons to a Swiss Army knife. “If states can now shield their laws from review by the federal courts that compare assault weapons to Swiss Army knives, then California will use that authority to protect people’s lives, where Texas used it to put women in harm’s way,” Newsom said. #abortion #2A #texas #california Read More:
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 09, 2021
In NEWS
A previously unreported FBI document obtained by Rolling Stone reveals that “private” messaging apps WhatsApp and iMessage are deeply vulnerable to law-enforcement searches. WASHINGTON — As Apple and WhatsApp have built themselves into multibillion-dollar behemoths, they’ve done it while preaching the importance of privacy, especially when it comes to secure messaging. But in a previously unreported FBI documentobtained by Rolling Stone, the bureau claims that it’s particularly easy to harvest data from Facebook’s WhatsApp and Apple’s iMessage services, as long as the FBI has a warrant or subpoena. Judging by this document, “the most popular encrypted messaging apps iMessage and WhatsApp are also the most permissive,” according to Mallory Knodel, the chief technology officer at the Center for Democracy and Technology. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has articulated a “​​privacy-focused vision” built around WhatsApp, the most popular messaging service in the world. Apple CEO Tim Cook says privacy is a “basic human right” and that Apple believes in “giving the user transparency and control,” a philosophy that extends to the company’s wildly popular iMessage app. For journalists, activists, and government critics who worry about government mass surveillance and political retribution, secure messaging tools can mean the difference between doing their work safely or facing imminent danger. #privacy #surveillance #fbi #facebook #whatsapp
FBI Document Says the Feds Can Get Your WhatsApp Data — in Real Time content media
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Reyets Curated Content
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Dec 07, 2021
In NEWS
Tense moments unfolded Tuesday evening outside the Hennepin County Government Center in downtown Minneapolis after a car drove past some barricades into the area where protesters were calling for justice for Daunte Wright. Video shows protesters trying to get the driver to stop, with some on the roof pounding the vehicle. The car continued south down Seventh Street. Officer Garrett Parten, spokesman for the Minneapolis Police Department, said no one was injured and no one called 911 to report the incident. Police are not working to track down the driver because the protesters did not have a permit to block off the street and thus the driver was not committing a crime by entering the area, Parten said. Earlier in the day, the space outside the courthouse was filled with people who had gathered to support Wright's family on the first day of the trial for former Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter, who is charged with manslaughter in his death. Chants of 'Say his name: Daunte Wright' echoed outside the government center as jury selection began. Four of the needed 14 jurors and alternates were seated during Tuesday's proceedings. 'They are on the 18th floor, and we're down here,' Sharolyn Hagen said. 'I hope they can feel a little bit of our presence.' Hagen and Jeanelle Austin came with paper, markers and pens to create a space strung between two trees for protesters to 'write it forward' and express their thoughts about this moment for Wright's family. 'Your family is going to be put on the stand, your life is going to be exposed, they are going tease apart every good, every bad thing about Daunte,' Austin said. 'That's going to be extremely painful.' Their plan is to compile all the notes, pictures and letters in a binder and give them to the Wright family. They hope the messages will help the Wright family feel supported during trial. 'Standing with them in spirit and love and truth and hope, and they just need to know we've got their back. We've got their back,' Austin said. https://amp.kstp.com/articles/car-drives-through-crowd-of-daunte-wright-supporters-in-downtown-minneapolis-no-injuries-reported-6317597.html #protest #DaunteWright #Minneapolis
Police are not working to track down  driver who drove through crowd of Daunte Wright supporters because protesters did not have a permit.  content media
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Dec 07, 2021
In NEWS
Redistricting proposals violate section 2 by denying rights to Latino and Black voters, attorney general Merrick Garland says lThe US Department of Justice is suing Texas over its new electoral maps, saying the plans violate the Voting Rights Act by making it more difficult for Black and Latino voters to elect their preferred candidates. Minority voters accounted for 95% of population growth in Texas over the last decade but there are no new majority-minority districts in the new plans. Texas gained two new seats in Congress because of its high population growth over the last decade. #voting #texas #redistricting
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Dec 07, 2021
In NEWS
HOW PRISON WRITERS STRUGGLE TO BE HEARD Sky-high email and phone costs, fear of retaliation by prison staff, and isolation create roadblocks for incarcerated people to share their experience and join a growing national conversation on reforming the criminal legal system. Most people in prison pay for virtually every form of communication they have access to. For those lucky enough to have email, there is a cost connected to each correspondence. Where we are, in Washington state, people in prison can use the technology service JPay to send monitored emails and transfer money. Qualifying prisoners can purchase a personal JPay tablet at about $139, and prisoners must purchase “e-stamps” to send messages. Stamps cost 17 to 33 cents each, though the price can be higher in other states. This may not sound like much, but if you consider the fact that most prisoners in Washington state make only 42 cents per hour at prison jobs, sending a message home through JPay can represent nearly 40 percent of an hour’s labor. For a person on the streets making $20 an hour, that would be the equivalent of $8 each time they sent an email or text. The tablet is the equivalent of over 330 hours of prison labor. Phone calls are even worse. A local 20-minute phone call from a prison in Washington state costs around $2.50 or nearly six hours of prison labor, though excessive call costs are a national issue. Last year, a federal judge in New Jersey approved a $25 million settlement after prisoners in the state sued GTL, a phone service provider, for inflated costs. For prisoners who are dependent on communicating using paper or a typewriter, costs can get outrageously high. Those confined in Washington are only allowed to purchase from one vendor, Union Supply, when ordering supplies, meaning they have no choice over what they pay. A typewriter from Union Supply costs over $300 and requires a $15 deposit. Supporting supplies such as correctable ribbons are $12.95 each; correction tape is $17.55 for a six-pack, and a packet of 100 sheets of typing paper is $1.71. Getting set up with a typewriter and supplies to write requires a prisoner to spend around $350 or 833 hours of prison labor. If a person in prison used a ribbon, one correction tape, and a packet of paper each month, they would need $17.58 every month. That is a third of a prisoner’s monthly paycheck in Washington state. The outrageous cost of being heard has a chilling effect. People simply can’t afford to speak. They are silenced through overpriced, unobtainable, outdated technology. #prison #communication
Sky High Email and Phone Rates, Keep Prisoners From Sharing Their Story content media
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Dec 06, 2021
In NEWS
This article was produced for ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network in partnership with WRFK and WWNO. Sign up for Dispatches to get stories like this one as soon as they are published. Join reporters from both newsrooms on Thursday, Dec. 2 for “Shielded,” a live virtual event about how law enforcement agencies shield themselves from accountability. When sheriff’s deputies in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, pulled over Octavio Lopez for an expired inspection tag in 2018, they wrote on his traffic ticket that he is white. Lopez, who is from Nicaragua, is Hispanic and speaks only Spanish, said his wife. In fact, of the 167 tickets issued by deputies to drivers with the last name Lopez over a nearly six-year span, not one of the motorists was labeled as Hispanic, according to records provided by the Jefferson Parish clerk of court. The same was true of the 252 tickets issued to people with the last name of Rodriguez, 234 named Martinez, 223 with the last name Hernandez and 189 with the surname Garcia. “If everybody’s white, there can’t be any racial bias,” Frank Baumgartner, a political science professor at the University of North Carolina of Chapel Hill, told WWNO/WRKF and ProPublica This kind of misidentification is widespread — and not without harm. Across America, law enforcement agencies have been accused of targeting Hispanic drivers, failing to collect data on those traffic stops, and covering up potential officer misconduct and aggressive immigration enforcement by identifying people as white on tickets. Read More: #data #bias #policemisconduct
Law enforcement agencies have been accused of targeting Hispanic drivers in traffic stops and identifying them as white on tickect.  content media
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Dec 06, 2021
In NEWS
Millions of crime predictions left on an unsecured server show PredPol mostly avoided Whiter neighborhoods, targeted Black and Latino neighborhoods Between 2018 and 2021, more than one in 33 U.S. residents were potentially subject to police patrol decisions directed by crime prediction software called PredPol. The company that makes it sent more than 5.9 million of these crime predictions to law enforcement agencies across the country—from California to Florida, Texas to New Jersey—and we found those reports on an unsecured server. The Markup and Gizmodo analyzed them and found persistent patterns. Residents of neighborhoods where PredPol suggested few patrols tended to be Whiter and more middle- to upper-income. Many of these areas went years without a single crime prediction. These communities weren’t just targeted more—in some cases they were targeted relentlessly. Crimes were predicted every day, sometimes multiple times a day, sometimes in multiple locations in the same neighborhood: thousands upon thousands of crime predictions over years. A few neighborhoods in our data were the subject of more than 11,000 predictions. The software often recommended daily patrols in and around public and subsidized housing, targeting the poorest of the poor. “Communities with troubled relationships with police—this is not what they need,” said Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst at the ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project. “They need resources to fill basic social needs.” Yet the pattern repeated nearly everywhere we looked... Read More #data #fightthealgorithim #bais #crime #prediction
Crime Prediction Software Promised to Be Free of Biases. New Data Shows It Perpetuates Them content media
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Dec 06, 2021
Police mistake homeowner for burglar, arrest him even after identifying himself. content media
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Nov 28, 2021