More than a year after the murder of George Floyd sparked global racial justice demonstrations, larger-than-life statues of Floyd, Breonna Taylor and John Lewis were erected in Manhattan's Union Square this week, ABC 7 News reported.
What they're saying: "This is the first time there's been a sculpture like this in NYC, usually it's a mural on a wall, so change is here, change is here," George Floyd's brother, Terrence Floyd, said of the sculpture, per ABC 7 News.
The pandemic slowed the criminal justice system to a crawl in much of the U.S., and now an increase in violent crime is straining the system even further.
Why it matters: COVID-19 has caused backlogs in criminal cases across the U.S. to swell, forcing district attorneys to focus on the most violent offenses — and decline, delay or deal down a slew of other cases.
A former Louisiana State Police trooper was charged Thursday with a civil rights violation for beating a Black motorist 18 times with a flashlight, according to the Associated Press.
Why it matters: Former state trooper Jacob Brown's indictment is the first criminal case to come out of federal investigations into attacks in which state troopers and their bosses concealed incidents of misconduct, according to the AP.
Minneapolis voters will be able to weigh in on the city's police department on the local ballot, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled Thursday.
Why it matters: The proposed charter amendment was spurred by mass protests against police brutality after George Floyd's death last year. It would replace the city's police department with a new Department of Public Safety that "could include" police officers "if necessary."
Why it matters: The Angelo Quinto Act, named after the Filipino American Navy vet who died in Antioch last December after police allegedly knelt on his neck for five minutes, expands upon the chokeholds ban instituted in the state following George Floyd’s murder.
The Justice Department has agreed to review the practices of the Columbus, Ohio, police department following several fatal shootings of Black people in the city, Mayor Andrew Ginther announced Thursday.
Why it matters: The nature of the review differs from that of the "pattern or practice" probes the department has undertaken in Phoenix and Minneapolis. Those typically end with a civil lawsuit by the DOJ to compel departments to change their practices.
A Georgia grand jury on Thursday indicted a former prosecutor on charges of misconduct related to the investigation into the death of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr announced in a press release.
Why it matters: Arbery's death was one of the catalysts for nationwide Black Lives Matter protests last summer.
A Colorado grand jury returned a 32-count indictment against police officers and paramedics in the 2019 death of Elijah McClain, a 23-year-old Black man.
Driving the news: The grand jury charged each of the three officers and two paramedics with manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide, the state’s attorney general announced Wednesday.
The peaceful nature of protests and acts of law enforcement against protesters might be banned from discussion in an upcoming Tampa trial for last year's Fourth of July Black Lives Matter protesters.
Why it matters: Creative Loafing's reporting tells a starkly different story of the day than what prosecutors may be trying to portray at trial.
The number of U.S. Latinos identifying as multiracial soared during the last decade, while those identifying as solely white dropped significantly, according to the latest census.
Why it matters: The dramatic shift in racial identity among Latinos came after the census offered more options in 2020, giving Latinos the opportunity to officially embrace Indigenous and Black backgrounds.