7 Things: Montgomery mayor demands masks, felony murder charge for police officer involved in Rayshard Brooks’ death, ‘Funnymaine’ and other protesters in Birmingham won’t be charged and more …
7. This is where they get Trump, apparently
- It’s time for another week of silly media coverage over a book written by a disgruntled former President Donald Trump aide. This time, former National Security Advisor John Bolton alleges Trump wanted Chinese President Xi Jinping to help with his reelection, Russian President Vladimir Putin thinks Trump is a dope, and that Trump has no real foreign policy plan and is focused on reelection.
- This is hardly the first anti-Trump book that the media gave their own specials and breathless coverage. Books by Michael Wolff, Omarosa, David Frum, April Ryan, Jim Acosta, Bob Woodward and even an anonymous op-ed writer got some attention, but none of them had much of an actual impact.
6. Port of Mobile project officially happening
- The Alabama State Port Authority and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have officially partnered for the Project Partnership Agreement to widen and deepen the Mobile Harbor Ship Channel.
- U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) said that this agreement is “yet another milestone in the deepening and widening of the Port of Mobile.” Shelby is also the reason why only 25% of the project is state funded and 75% of funds will come from the federal government.
5. Alabama has appealed judge’s ruling on absentee voting
- Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill is fighting back against U.S. District Judge Abdul Kallon’s decision to dismiss absentee ballot application requirements of multiple witnesses or a notary and a copy of a photo ID by taking the appeal to a higher court.
- The decision made by Kallon would’ve affected Jefferson, Mobile and Lee Counties. In the appeal, Merrill is listed as a defendant, along with local officials from each of the three counties.
4. Sessions says removal of monuments is “almost an erasing of history”
- As monuments for Robert E. Lee and Abraham Lincoln come under attack, former Attorney General Jeff Sessions said that there is no “real discussion” on removing Confederate monuments before these decisions are made.
- Sessions added that “it’s a demonizing of anybody who was not perfect.” He also advised that cities in Alabama need to follow the Alabama Memorial Preservation Act to take these statues down.
3. Some arrested at Birmingham protests won’t be charged
- Not only will Jermaine “Funnymaine” Johnson not face penalties for inciting a riot, but 27 other people who were arrested during protests in Birmingham also won’t be prosecuted, as announced by Birmingham City Attorney Nicole King. More than 70 people were arrested at protests between June 1-7.
- Those who aren’t being charged were arrested simply for violating curfew or not dispersing, but otherwise protested peacefully. Those who caused damage will be prosecuted.
2. The officer involved in Rayshard Brooks shooting charged with felony murder
- In Atlanta, police officer Garrett Rolfe has been charged with felony murder and 10 other offenses, which would lead to life in prison if convicted for shooting and killing Rayshard Brooks in a Wendy’s parking lot. The other officer on the scene, Devin Brosnan, is being charged with aggravated assault, along with other charges.
- District Attorney Paul Howard said that “Mr. Brooks never presented himself as a threat” to Rolfe. He added that while Brooks had taken a taser from officers, he was running away and stood 18 feet 3 inches from them when the shooting took place. It’s also been reported that Rolfe proceeded to kick Brooks even after he had been shot. Brosnan has agreed to testify at the trial.
1. Montgomery mayor demands masks
- As COVID-19 cases spike in Montgomery and hospitals see more patients, Mayor Steven Reed issued an executive order requiring that masks be worn in public that carries a penalty of $25. This comes one day after the city council refused to mandate masks.
- Speaking on the order, Reed said, “As you know we’ve been encouraging our community to wear masks. Most of our community has done just that. However, not enough members of the community have done those things and so we start to go from an encouragement to an enforcement phase.”