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A former Pittsburgh-area white police officer on trial for fatally shooting a black teenager fleeing from a traffic stop was acquitted Friday of murder and manslaughter charges.

An Alleghany County Court jury found former East Pittsburgh officer Michael Rosfeld was justified when he killed 17-year-old Antwon Rose last June following less than four hours of deliberation in a four-day trial.

Hours after the verdict, two shots were fired into the office of Rosfeld’s attorney Pat Thomassey in Monroeville, Penn., WTAE-TV reported. Police showed up Saturday morning to investigate the incident which occurred around 12:30 a.m., according to Thomassey.

Earlier, Rose’s mother, Michelle Kenney, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "I hope that man [Rosfeld] never sleeps at night. I hope he gets as much sleep as I do, which is none."

EX-COP SAYS HE THOUGHT HE SAW A GUN WHEN HE SHOT BLACK TEEN

Kenney said she was upset but unsurprised by the verdict, given other cases in which police officers have either avoided charges or won acquittals in similar shootings.

"It isn’t what I hoped for, but it’s what I expected," she said, adding she feels her son ended up dead because he was black.

Supporters of Antwon Rose II, stand on the steps of Allegheny County Courthouse after hearing the verdict of not guilty on all charges for Michael Rosfeld, a former police officer in East Pittsburgh, Pa., Friday, March 22, 2019. 

Supporters of Antwon Rose II, stand on the steps of Allegheny County Courthouse after hearing the verdict of not guilty on all charges for Michael Rosfeld, a former police officer in East Pittsburgh, Pa., Friday, March 22, 2019.  (AP)

The high-profile killings of black men and teens by white police officers across the U.S. in recent years has become a flashpoint in fueling racial tensions.

The verdict sparked small demonstrations in downtown Pittsburgh where the case was tried. Pittsburgh police tweeted the “peaceful demonstration” resulted in rolling, temporary road closures.

Rose had been riding in the front seat of the cab when another occupant, Zaijuan Hester, in the back, rolled down a window and shot at two men on the street, hitting one in the abdomen. A few minutes later, Rosfeld spotted their car, which had its rear windshield shot out, and pulled it over. Rosfeld ordered the driver to the ground, but Rose and another passenger jumped out and began running away. Rosfeld, sworn in just hours before the fatal shooting after only a few weeks on the job, fired three times in quick succession.

WITNESS SAYS OFFICER QUESTIONED TEEN’S ACTIONS IN SHOOTING

Rose was struck three times in the back, arm and side, the jury was told.

Hester, 18, pleaded guilty last week to aggravated assault and firearms violations and admitted being the shooter.

The former officer told jurors that he thought Rose or another suspect had a gun pointed at him, insisting he fired his weapon to protect himself and the community. Neither was armed.

Former East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld earlier this month. 

Former East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld earlier this month.  (AP)

Two guns were found in the car.

A defense expert told the jury, which included three black jurors, that Rosfeld was justified in using deadly force to stop suspects he thought had been involved in a shooting.

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Rose’s mother has filed a federal lawsuit that accuses Rosfeld and the small town of East Pittsburgh of violating the teen’s civil rights.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News National

Florida police dog with the name Trump became a viral Facebook meme this week and now the agency where the dog works may impose a ban on naming K-9s after real people.

The meme features an image of a patrol car belonging to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office with a decal featuring K-9 Trump’s name and picture.

“Atta boy, Trump! Making a difference,” says accompanying text with the image posted Wednesday on the Facebook page of Cop Humor, a self-described pro-law enforcement conservative group, the Orlando Sentinel reported Friday.

NYPD OFFERS FINAL SALUTE TO K-9 OFFICER BEFORE CANCER DEATH

Trump joined the sheriff’s office in March 2018, a spokesman told the paper.

He began patrol duty three months later.

TERMINALLY ILL WISCONSIN GIRL WHO LOVES DOGS VISITED BY K-9 OFFICERS, NEARLY 40 POLICE DEPARTMENTS

The agency said in a statement that K-9 names are left to the discretion of their human partners, according to the paper.

Currently, there is no policy dictating how the dogs should be named, the statement said.

But that could change.

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"We are aware that this is being shared on social media," the statement said. “In the future, the Sheriff’s Office may consider directing deputies to avoid naming their K-9 partners after real people."

Source: Fox News National

The widow of a police officer who was killed in the line of duty — who served as volunteer treasurer for a charity meant to benefit the families of other slain New York City police officers — stole $410,000 that she spent on dental work, tuition, her son’s legal bills and Barbra Streisand tickets, federal prosecutors allege.

During the seven years that Lorraine Shanley, 68, of Staten Island, volunteered for Survivors of the Shield, the group received $1.9 million in donations — mostly from employees of the New York Police Department. An average of 5,500 NYPD employees donated each year, a Department of Justice statement read.

NYPD DELETES ‘COP KILLER’ TWEET AFTER OFFICER IS REVEALED TO BE ALIVE

“As alleged in the complaint, Lorraine Shanley violated her position of trust at a charity and victimized families who have already sacrificed so much,” said Jonathan D. Larsen, acting head of the IRS criminal investigation division. “IRS-CI is committed to following the money and investigating those individuals who steal from charities for their own personal gain.”

“IRS-CI is committed to following the money and investigating those individuals who steal from charities for their own personal gain.”

— Jonathan D. Larsen, acting head of the IRS criminal investigation division

Shanley surrendered Thursday to federal prosecutors. She faces bank fraud and aggravated identity theft charges.

Prosecutors allege Shanley spent $29,000 for her grandchild’s private school tuition, $63,000 for legal services related to criminal charges against her son, $32,000 for dental services and more than $1,400 to see Barbra Streisand in concert.

She also allegedly wrote $45,000 in checks to family members and others, according to a criminal complaint.

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“She betrayed the trust of the organization,” Kathleen Vigiano, whose husband was a detective who died rescuing people from the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, told the New York Times. “We have widows who have been on a pension since the Sixties and it’s not that high. And that money could have gone to the kids’ educations, the special needs kids, the college kids.”

If convicted, Shanley faces up to 30 years in prison.

Source: Fox News National

Emotions ran high at a San Jose, Calif. community meeting this week where residents questioned local officials about the brutal stabbing death of Bambi Larson, who was allegedly killed by an undocumented immigrant wanted by federal immigration officials for deportation.

Authorities said Carlos Eduardo Arevalo Carranza – a native of El Salvador with a long criminal history and admitted gang ties — stalked Larson, 59, before the February attack in her home.

“He had a crime record,” San Jose resident Connie Schneider told the Bay Area’s FOX 2. “He shouldn’t have been able to do this to anybody.”

LOESCH ON CA WOMAN’S MURDER: ‘INNOCENT PEOPLE ARE PAYING’ FOR DEMS’ SANCTUARY POLICIES

Several communities have been shocked in recent weeks by slayings that authorities have attributed to suspects described as illegal immigrants, drawing attention to President Trump’s call for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and the nationwide debate over sanctuary policies adopted by some states and cities that critics say have allowed some violent criminals living in the U.S. illegally to evade deportation.

Carranza, 24, had been deported back to El Salvador in 2013 but re-entered the United States illegally. The case has put a spotlight on California’s sanctuary laws, which allowed him to go free even though federal immigration officials had requested local authorities detain him in an effort to begin deportation proceedings. Those requests went unanswered.

San Jose and Santa Clara County officials have come under scrutiny for not handing Carranza over to federal officials.

“I think everybody believes something needs to be done,” Larson’s friend, George Bisceglia, told FOX 2. “There’s obviously a disconnect somewhere.”

“I think everybody believes something needs to be done. There’s obviously a disconnect somewhere.”

— George Bisceglia, friend of a California murder victim

Sheriff’s deputy mourned

North of California on Wednesday, residents and law enforcement officials were mourning Kittitas County, Wash., sheriff’s deputy Ryan Thompson, who died Tuesday after exchanging gunfire with a suspect who allegedly evaded a traffic stop.

Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Thompson, 42, was shot and killed and a police officer was wounded after they exchanged gunfire with a road rage driving suspect Tuesday, authorities said Wednesday. (Kittitas County Sheriff's Office via AP)

Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Thompson, 42, was shot and killed and a police officer was wounded after they exchanged gunfire with a road rage driving suspect Tuesday, authorities said Wednesday. (Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

“You have to come and support our community,” Kittitas County resident Tami Merkle told Seattle’s KING 5 News. “And give our love to their family and the fallen officer.”

The suspect, 29-year-old Juan Manuel Flores Del Toro, entered the U.S. in 2014 on a temporary agricultural work visa. Investigators say he fatally shot Thompson, 42, and wounded Kittitas police Officer Benito Chavez, who is expected to survive.

Flores Del Toro was fatally shot by officers during the gunfire exchange.

“For this to happen here? It’s insane. You don’t get that here,” said Ethan Keaton, 17, a junior at Ellensburg High School, who was near a growing memorial at Kittitas Elementary School, according to the Seattle Times.

“For this to happen here? It’s insane. You don’t get that here.”

— Ethan Keaton, 17, student in area where a sheriff’s deputy was killed this week

First United Methodist Rev. Jen Stuart changed the signage outside her church Wednesday to read, "Together we mourn Deputy Thompson, pray for Officer Chavez."

“This is the kind of thing that can tear a community apart – it can also bring us together if we choose to allow it to do that,” Stuart said.

“This is the kind of thing that can tear a community apart – it can also bring us together if we choose to allow it to do that.”

— The Rev. Jen Stuart

Four slain in Nevada 

In Reno, Nev., the killings of four people have become part of the national immigration debate. The bodies of Connie Koontz, 56; Sophia Renken, 74; Gerald "Jerry" David, 81; and David’s wife, 80-year-old Sharon, were found between Jan. 10 and Jan. 16 in Gardnerville and South Reno.

ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT LINKED TO MULTIPLE MURDERS ALLEGEDLY STOLE VICTIMS’ JEWELRY, COURT DOCS SAY

Wilber Ernesto Martinez-Guzman, 19 – whom investigators say entered the U.S. illegally from El Salvador – has been charged with multiple felony counts related his alleged 10-day rampage because he needed money to buy drugs. He pleaded not guilty Tuesday to four murder counts.

President Trump cited the case as evidence for his promised U.S.-Mexico border wall and the Davids’ daughters attended Trump’s State of the Union address last month.

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Since the killings, the family members have remembered the Davids as a generous couple who stepped up when anyone needed anything.

"They took me under their wing and loved me unconditionally," the couple’s niece, Michelle Drummond, told the Reno Gazette-Journal in February. "I’m a better person for knowing them."

Source: Fox News National

Tennessee authorities announced charges on Thursday against two people following the death of one suspect’s husband.

The arrests followed the death of Jeffery Steven White, whose body was located outside his home, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) said in a news release.

ATLANTA CHILD MURDERERS EVIDENCE TO BE RE-EXAMINED BY INVESTIGATORS

An investigation into his death was launched; information led authorities to the suspects, Christopher Mailhot, of Iuka, Miss., and Elaina Michelle White, of Savannah, Tenn., officials said.

White was married to the dead man, TBI said.

The pair were arrested on Thursday and booked into the Hardin County Correctional Facility, both on a $2 million bond, according to the news release.

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Mailhot, 21, was charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, authorities said. White, 38, was also charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, as well as criminal responsibility for first-degree murder, authorities said.

An autopsy will help determine Jeffery White’s cause of death, officials said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News National

A road rage suspect who investigators say shot and killed a Washington state sheriff’s deputy and wounded a police officer earlier this week was in the U.S. illegally, federal authorities said Thursday.

In an email to Fox News, Immigration and Customs Enforcement  (ICE) spokeswoman Tanya Roman said 29-year-old Juan Manuel Flores Del Toro, a Mexican citizen, entered the U.S. at Laredo, Texas, in April 2014 on a temporary agricultural worker visa.

Roman said ICE had no record of him leaving the United States or extending his visa after it expired.

Local police said Flores Del Toro lived in Ellensburg, a university city of 20,000 residents 100 miles east of Seattle in agriculturally rich central Washington.

Investigators say Flores Del Toro fatally shot 42-year-old Kittitas County Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Thompson and wounded 22-year-old Kittitas Police Officer Benito Chavez Tuesday night after they attempted to stop his vehicle following a driving complaint. He allegedly emerged from his vehicle and opened fire on the officers after a short pursuit.

The suspect was later shot by officers who returned fire, and was pronounced dead a short time later at Kittitas Valley Hospital.

Ellensburg Police Capt. Dan Hansberry said there were no warrants pending for his arrest, and officers do not know why he fled the attempted stop.

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Police in the past "had limited contacts with him," but Hansberry described them as "nothing of real significance" without providing further details.

Thompson was married with three children and is the first law enforcement officer to be shot and killed in Kittitas County since 1927.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News National

A grisly discovery was made in Texas on Thursday when a man’s body was found inside a closet, authorities said.

Officers with the San Antonio Police Department arrived at the scene in response to “a call for a DOA,” police said in a statement. At the address was an apartment building, MySanAntonio.com reported.

INDIANA POLICE DISCOVER VEHICLE SEAT WITH BLOOD AND TEETH IN PARKING LOT

The location had been “opened by maintenance workers” by the time officers got there as a result of “a strong foul odor,” police said. Within the closet was a man’s “badly decomposed” body, according to the statement.

Officials suspect the remains had been there for several months, according to the outlet.

"It’s safe to say this is beginning to look more and more like a homicide," San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said.

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The Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office will conduct an autopsy, police said.

The dead man is thought to have been his 40’s, MySanAntonio.com said.

Source: Fox News National

A Justice Department program intended to financially assist law enforcement officers who have been injured or killed in the line of duty has an application process that is generating “absurd results” – and something must be done about it, Sen. Chuck Grassley says.

The Iowa Republican, in a letter sent to U.S. Attorney General William Barr this week, is asking for a review of the Public Safety Officers Benefits Program after officers say they have been denied help over wildly differing interpretations of the program’s requirements for compensation.

“My staff spoke with [an] injured officer who was denied benefits because, in an effort to fight through his disability, he would work around his home fixing old motorcycles and snowmobiles,” Grassley wrote. “A police officer who suffered a severe traumatic brain injury after an on-duty vehicle collision was denied disability benefits because he held several short-term part-time positions. In 2015, this injured officer worked at Home Depot, Inc., Garda Great Lakes, Inc., and the City of St. Paul and earned a combined total of $9,551.11 for the year."

FAMILIES OF SERIOUSLY-INJURED POLICE OFFICERS SAY HEALTHCARE SYSTEMS ARE FAILING THEM

The PSOB, which “provides death and education benefits to survivors of fallen law enforcement officers, firefighters, and other first responders, and disability benefits to officers catastrophically injured in the line of duty,” gives out lump-sum awards after reviewing around 900 claims each year, it previously has told Fox News, with funding for it approved annually by Congress. The lump-sum awards can be as high as $360,000.

But Grassley says vague language written into the program’s rules for approving or denying applications is getting in the way of some officers receiving that kind of help.

“According to statute, a public safety officer is eligible for benefits if they have ‘become permanently and totally disabled,’ as a result of a “catastrophic injury.’ The statute further defines ‘catastrophic injury’ as an injury which ‘permanently prevent[s] an individual from performing any gainful work,” he wrote. “DOJ subsequently issued regulations further defining ‘gainful work’ as ‘full-or-part-time activity that actually is compensated or commonly is compensated.’

Grassley goes on to say that the “lack of clear and reasonable guidance here can, and apparently has, led to absurd results."

“In theory, for example, the simple act of washing family dishes in the controlled, safe environment of one’s own house could qualify as a commonly compensated role because a dishwasher is a commonly compensated position—in restaurants,” he wrote to Barr.

Grassley concludes his letter by asking the attorney general to create a claims manual to “help remove ambiguity, establish uniform best practices, and ensure predictable results” and for the Justice Department to “thoroughly review its definition and interpretation of the PSOB requirements."

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“If Congress had intended for any activity that could be compensated under some conditions that are likely totally irrelevant to a disabled public safety officer to disqualify that person from receiving benefits, then it would not have added the word ‘gainful’ in the statute,” he said.

The Justice Department did not respond to a request for comment at the time of publication of this article.

Source: Fox News National

A small community in central Washington state on Wednesday mourned the sheriff’s deputy who was killed in a shootout with a road-rage driving suspect, remembering the veteran officer as a family man and “one of our finest.”

Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Thompson, 42, was shot dead Tuesday night after he and Kittitas police Officer Benito Chavez, 22, responded to a driving complaint and attempted to stop a vehicle. After a short pursuit, the suspect exited the car and exchanged gunfire with the officers, killing Thompson and wounding Chavez. The suspect was also shot and later died.

POLICE SHOOTOUT WITH SUSPECT IN OREGON AFTER CAR CHASE CAPTURED IN DRAMATIC VIDEO

"Our community has a very heavy heart today. Last night, we lost one of our finest," Kittitas County Sheriff Gene Dana said at a news conference Wednesday morning. It was the first fatal shooting of a law enforcement officer in the rural county in 92 years, he said.

"Our community has a very heavy heart today. Last night, we lost one of our finest."

— Kittitas County Sheriff Gene Dana

The body of a Kittitas County sheriff's deputy is draped with a U.S. flag as it is carried out of Kittitas Valley Healthcare Hospital in the early morning hours of Wednesday, March 20, 2019, in Ellensburg, Wash. (Associated Press)

The body of a Kittitas County sheriff’s deputy is draped with a U.S. flag as it is carried out of Kittitas Valley Healthcare Hospital in the early morning hours of Wednesday, March 20, 2019, in Ellensburg, Wash. (Associated Press)

The tight-knit community of 1,500 was stunned that such violence could descend on the town, whose website brands it as a place “without the crime, noise, traffic jams and pollution of larger cities,” the Seattle Times reported.

“For this to happen here? It’s insane. You don’t get that here,” Ethan Keaton, a 17-year-old high school student, told the paper.

Mourners gathered at a memorial at Kittitas Elementary School, about a block from the shooting scene, to honor Thompson, who was born in nearby Walla Walla and attended Central Washington University, the Times reported. Heart-shaped balloons were strung along the fence with homemade signs that read: “Kittitas Strong.”

TENNESSEE OFFICER WOUNDED IN WELFARE-CHECK SHOOTOUT DIES

“Maybe you get pulled over for a DUI or speeding. You don’t get people shot here,” Josh Dunn, a 20-year-old who grew up in the town, told the paper. “I don’t even have a word for it.”

Thompson, a 15-year law enforcement veteran, is survived by his wife and three children, FOX13 Seattle reported.

Kittitas police Officer Benito Chavez, 22, was shot and wounded in a leg during a shootout with a road-rage driving suspect Tuesday night. He was listed in satisfactory condition Wednesday morning.

Kittitas police Officer Benito Chavez, 22, was shot and wounded in a leg during a shootout with a road-rage driving suspect Tuesday night. He was listed in satisfactory condition Wednesday morning. (Ellensburg Police Department)

Chavez was shot in a leg and suffered a shattered femur, Ellensburg Police Chief Ken Wade said. He was airlifted to a hospital following the shootout and was listed in satisfactory condition Wednesday morning. He and his wife are expecting their first child, the FOX13 reported.

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The suspect, who has not been identified, was shot and later died at a hospital. Authorities did not immediately provide information on how many times the suspect was shot or how many shots were fired overall.

Wade said authorities have no other information besides the road-rage incident for what might have prompted the suspect to flee and exchange gunfire with the officers.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News National

A Southern California driver apparently couldn’t help but dance after reportedly leading authorities in a car chase Tuesday night.

The California Highway Patrol (CHP) started tailing the suspect in the Calabasas area and ultimately followed until they got off the freeway in the San Fernando Valley, according to The Associated Press.

POLICE SHOOTOUT WITH SUSPECT IN OREGON AFTER CAR CHASE CAPTURED IN DRAMATIC VIDEO

The individual behind the wheel was sought for reckless driving, Fox 11 reported, citing CHP.

Aerial video from the scene showed the moment when authorities managed to bump the car from behind and ultimately got the driver to stop.

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The suspect soon emerged with their hands in the air as authorities surrounded the vehicle. But after moving a distance across the road, video showed the driver erupt into a brief breakdance-style routine.

Officers were later seen on the video taking the suspect into custody.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News National


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