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News Roundup

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Just a week after the tragic school shooting in Charlotte at UNCC, a Colorado student was shot dead and eight others were injured in an attack at STEM School Highland Ranch, a high school near Denver.  Two STEM students, Alec McKinney and Devon Erickson, are accused of using handguns to attack their schoolmates in an English class on Tuesday afternoon.  An 18-year-old student, Kendrick Castillo, was killed when he tackled one of the shooters to protect his classmates.  Keep reading for more news.

Parlier & Howell.  North Carolina continues to grieve the loss of the two UNCC students who were killed in the campus shooting last week.  The New York Times has a lengthy story about Riley Howell and The State has one about Reed ParlierScholarship funds honoring each young man have been established at UNCC.

Suspect Charged.  As WSOC TV reports, the suspect in the UNCC shooting, Trystan Terrell, was indicted this week on charges of murder, attempted murder, and assault.  The WSOC report indicates that students who were in the classroom have said that Terrell targeted a specific table of students, though few other details of the incident were available at the time of writing.

New Trial.  This week the North Carolina Court of Appeals vacated Chad Copley’s conviction for first-degree murder and granted him a new trial because of a prosecutor’s comments during closing arguments suggesting that race may have been a factor in Copley’s decision to shoot Kouren-Rodney Bernard Thomas in 2016.  WRAL has a story about the COA’s decision here.

Jail Death Lawsuit.  The Winston-Salem Journal reports that a lawsuit filed last week alleges that staff at the Forsyth County Jail ignored Deshawn Lamont Coley’s request for medical treatment to address his deteriorating breathing due to asthma before he died at the jail in May of 2017.  The lawsuit names as defendants Correct Care Solutions and several people employed by that company, which contracted to provide medical services at the jail.  The Journal report says that this is the fourth lawsuit filed against the company related to deaths at the Forsyth jail.  Lawsuits related to the 2013 death of Dino Vann Nixon and the 2014 death of Jennifer Eileen McCormack Schuler each were settled, and a suit related to the death of Stephen Antwan Patterson in May 2017 still is being litigated.

Texas Execution.  Late last month Texas executed John William King as punishment for killing James Byrd Jr. in 1998 by dragging him behind a truck.  The Associated Press describes King as “an avowed racist” and Byrd’s murder appeared to be motivated simply by race-based hate.  When King was sentenced to death he “became the first white man in modern Texas history to be sentenced to death for killing a black person” according to the New York Times.  King’s accomplice, Lawrence Russell Brewer, subsequently was sentenced to death and was executed in 2011.  James Byrd’s family established the Byrd Foundation for Racial Healing.

Rosenstein Departs DOJ.  As ABC News reports, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was honored at a farewell ceremony at the Justice Department as he prepares to officially step down from his position on Saturday.  President Trump has nominated Jeffrey Rosen to replace Rosenstein.  Rosen is an attorney who has served as the Deputy Secretary of Transportation and the Senate is expected to vote on his confirmation next week.

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