News Roundup

ABC News reports that approximately 50 police officers resigned en masse from the Portland Police Bureau’s Rapid Response Team this week after a member of the team was indicted by a grand jury for excessive use of force during an August 2020 protest in the city.  Officer Corey Budsworth was indicted Tuesday on an assault charge for allegedly striking a woman in the head with a baton during the protest.  The resignations represent the entire membership of the Rapid Response Team, which is a voluntary assignment that mostly involves crowd control duties.  The team has been on duty frequently in recent months because of the extensive demonstrations in Portland following the murder of George Floyd.  Keep reading for more news.

Raleigh PD.  ABC 11 reports that Raleigh has selected Estella Patterson as the newest Police Chief of the Raleigh Police Department following a nationwide search.  Patterson is a Deputy Chief with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and is responsible for the Patrol Services Group.  She has been with the CMPD since 1996.  Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown is retiring from the department after more than 30 years, eight of which as Chief.

Harnett.  WLOS reports that the insurer for the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office has agreed to settle federal claims brought against the office by six families who had alleged a pattern of use of excessive force by officers.  The WLOS story says that the suit’s allegations focused on the conduct of four deputies and also asserted that former Sheriff Larry Rollins and current Sheriff Wayne Coats did not properly train, supervise, or take disciplinary action against the deputies.  In a statement, Sheriff Coats said that the settlement was not an admission of the alleged conduct and expressed his support for the deputies.

DWI Court.  The Charlotte Observer reports that a backlog of DWI cases in the wake of the pandemic has prompted Mecklenburg courts to implement an experimental dedicated DWI court setting intended to handle cases more efficiently.  For the next 10 weeks, an entire courtroom in the county courthouse will be devoted to DWI proceedings.  According to the report, defendants will be informed of the specific time of day that their case will be heard and will not be required to be present in court until that time.

St. Louis.  The Associated Press reports that Patricia and Mark McCloskey pleaded guilty to misdemeanors this week, resolving charges that arose from an incident last year where the couple pointed guns at racial justice protesters who were marching past their home in St. Louis.  The McCloskey’s interaction with protesters was national news last year and the couple, who are attorneys, appeared at the 2020 Republican National Convention to express support for gun rights.

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