Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, where nine church members attending a Bible study were shot and killed, has a new pastor. Reverend Dr. Betty Deas Clark was appointed the first female pastor at the historic church and delivered her first sermon on Sunday with the message of hope: “In the face of tragedy and uncertain times, we still have a God in whom we can trust.” The Reverend Clementa Pinckney, who was a state senator and pastor of the Charleston church, was one of the victims of the June shooting by Dylan Roof. Discuss
According to reports from witnesses, Army vet and Umpqua Community College student Chris Mintz, helped students escape during a campus shooting and even rushed the gunman. He is currently in the hospital after being shot seven times according to ABC News. This morning, Mintz told the outlet, “I just hope that everyone else is OK. I'm just worried about everyone else.” A witness told ABC News, “He ran to the library and pulled the alarms and he was telling people to run, grabbing people, telling them, 'You just have to go.’ He actually ran back towards the building where the shooting was and he ran back into the building.” A 26-year-old gunman identified as Chris Harper Mercer opened fire at the school, killing at least ten people. Multiple witnesses have told reporters that the shooter specifically targeted Christians. He was also killed during the shooting. Discuss
A manhunt is currently underway near Franklin County, Va., after a gunman walked into a live local news broadcast and murdered the reporter and cameraman. The local chamber of commerce director, Vicki Gardner, who was being interviewed, was also shot and injured. The shooting happened early this morning while WDBJ’s Alison Parker, 24, and her cameraman Adam Ward, 27, were doing a seemingly breezy interview with Gardner at a shopping center. A few moments into the live segment, a figure wearing all black walked up and began firing. According to Gawker, both Ward and Parker were engaged to other members of the WDBJ staff, and today was Parker’s last day with the station. A going away party was planned for her later this morning.
UPDATE: The alleged shooter, who is reportedly an ex-employee of the news station who goes by the name Bryce Williams, has shot killed himself. Discuss
A police officer at the University of Cincinnati has been charged with murder for shooting a man named Samuel DuBose at seemingly routine traffic stop. The officer, Ray Tensing, is white, and the victim, Samuel DuBose, was black. A bodycam video of the entire incident has been made public, showing the interaction between the officer and DuBose, which at no point up to the shooting seems aggressive. After being pulled over for not having a front license plate, Dubose and the officer relatively calmly discuss why he has been pulled over for about two minutes. In the moments before Tensing shot DuBose pointblank in the head—causing his foot to slam the gas pedal after he was instantly killed—DuBose started his ignition. Local Prosecutor Joe Deters told reporters,
I've been doing this for over 30 years. This is the most asinine act I've ever seen a police officer make—totally unwarranted. People want to believe that Mr. DuBose had done something violent towards the officer—he did not. He did not at all. I feel so sorry for his family and what they lost, and I feel sorry for the community, too.”
In his police report, Tensing gave different version of events, lying by saying that he was “dragged” by Dubose’s car. He claimed he feared for his life. Discuss
According to reports, the Navy Yard in Washington D.C.—the same location of a deadly shooting that killed 12 people in 2013—is on lockdown. Throughout the morning, there have been conflicting reports regarding a shooter currently on the site, but according to CNN, officials have yet to find evidence of an active gunman. Earlier this morning, police received a 911 call about a shooting in one of the buildings. Tweets from the area (like this image shown from @PJElliotRadio) show a large SWAT presence. We’ll post more updates throughout the morning as they become available.
The son of one of the victims of the Charleston church shooting yesterday had some powerful words to say just a day after racist gunman Dylann Roof took the life of his mother and eight other members of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. At a vigil in Charleston, Chris Singleton said,
My mom was a God-fearing woman. She loved everybody with all of her heart ... Love is always stronger than hate. So if we just love the way my mom would, then the hate won’t be anywhere close to where the love is.
His mother, 45-year-old Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, had three children. Chris said, “In this situation, I just think about her smile. She smiles 24/7. That’s just what I’m thinking about to push me on." You can see his full statement here ... Discuss