The four police officers at the scene of the controversial death of a black man in Minneapolis on May 25 saw their legal troubles deepen on Wednesday.
Prosecutors upgraded the charges against Derek Chauvin, the officer who knelt on the neck of George Floyd. He is now being charged with second-degree murder. That’s along with the third-degree murder and manslaughter charges previously leveled against him.
The other three officers who were present at the incident but who failed to intervene now are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, according to the Associated Press.
They are Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao. All four have been arrested and are in custody.
Former SecDef slams president’s leadership
Jim Mattis, the former Secretary of Defense under President Donald Trump, his one-time boss on the issue of leadership on Wednesday.
“Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people,” he said, according to the New York Times.
“Does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership.”
Mattis served as defense secretary until December 2018 when he resigned his office in protest. He is a former four-star Marine Corps general.
Trump responded in a tweet that called Mattis “the world’s most overrated general” and added “Glad he is gone!”
Coronavirus cases and deaths still rise
The number of global deaths from the coronavirus continues to rise, with Johns Hopkins University’s Wednesday count at 385,947. The United States has the highest number at 107,175, followed by the United Kingdom (Great Britain) at 39,811 and Italy with 33,601.
In the category of total confirmed cases, the figure is 6,430,705 cases worldwide. The U.S. has 1,851,520, followed by Brazil with 534,016 and Russia with 431,715.
Stocks boom on hopes for an upturn
Wall Street put in a strong performance on Wednesday, as the value of stocks rose on the hope that the worst of the recent economic downturn was over.
The Dow Jones Average rose to 527.24 points to a near-record high of 26,269.89. The S&P 500 climbed by 43.05 points to 3,122.87 and the Nasdaq went up 74.54 to 9,682.91.
Some rain on the horizon … maybe
If you are one of those people whose lawn needs a little refresh, you can look forward – maybe – to a little rain in Orange County on Friday. Thursday should be the now-typical pattern of patchy fog in the morning and clouds in the afternoon, with temperatures hitting 80 degrees. Friday should be breezy with a high near 73, with a 30 percent chance of rain after 11 p.m., all according to the National Weather Service.
Categories: The Wider World