News Briefs

The Che Taylor Decision

After over a year of deliberation and reviewing evidence, inquest jury and County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg decided that no charges will be filed against Seattle police officers responsible for the fatal shooting of Che Taylor last February. The jury found that the two white officers believed that Taylor posed a threat of death or serious injury before he was shot, absolving them of using deadly force. In a prepared statement, Satterberg wrote that the prosecutors would have had to disprove that the homicide was legally justified in order to prosecute the two officers.“In light of the investigative materials […] there is insufficient evidence to overcome this complete defense as defined by the statute,” he stated. Taylor was shot by police when he was seen reaching for what one of the officers testified to be a gun during a brief encounter. One of the officers testified that they were aware of Taylor’s previous criminal convictions of rape and robbery, and as they confronted Taylor, he reached for his right hip and ignored commands to lay on the ground. Prior to being informed of the court decision, Taylor’s family released a statement expressing their disappointment in the decision and their intent to pursue a civil lawsuit.

Lake Steven’s Teenager Found Hanging

Investigators with the Lake Stevens Police Department found Ben Keita hanging from a tree in a wooded area of the city in early January, who had been reported missing since last November. Lake Stevens police said the county medical examiner first ruled Keita’s death as a suicide but later changed their finding to undetermined, leaving Keita’s family in a desperate search from information on the 18-year-old’s death. The public has put pressure on FBI to conduct an investigation as Keita’s death as a hate crime.

Revised Travel Ban

President Trump’s second attempt at a temporary travel ban targeting majority-Muslim countries went into effect Thursday, and faced a second round of legal attempts to stop it in its tracks. Washington was included in the handful of states taking legal action against the ban. Immigration advocacy groups and private residents that have filed lawsuits to block the new ban from going into effect, similar to when Trump issued his first travel ban in late January. Trump’s first ban barred citizens of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen for 90 days, all refugees for 120 days and Syrian citizens indefinitely.