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Louisiana Cop Who Killed Alton Sterling Fired From Baton Rouge Police Department

The second officer involved in the fatal shooting has been suspended for three days.

The Louisiana cop who shot and killed Alton Sterling has been fired, effective immediately, Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul announced at a news conference Friday (March 30). Officer Blane Salamoni was let go from the department while the second officer involved in the shooting, Howie Lake II, was suspended for three days without pay, Paul said.

The decision came after an administrative investigating into the “conduct of the officers” and how it “contributed” to the fatal “outcome” of the July 2016 shooting. Paul determined that Salamoni violated “tactics training professionalism” and “organizational standards,” and that the “use of force” against Sterling was also in violation of the department’s policy.

Salamoni killed Sterling after he and Lake responded to a 911 call about the father of five selling CDs outside of a convenience store.

"These actions were not minor deviations from policy, as they contributed to the outcome to the death of another human being," Paul said adding that separate disciplinary hearings were held for Salamoni and Lake where they discussed the evidence presented, and gave each officer an opportunity to provide an argument, witnesses, and an “explanation for his behavior and actions during the incident.”

Lake answered “all of the questions that were presented during the hearing,” but Salamoni was advised by his attorney not to answer any questions. He reportedly plans to appeal the decision.

“I take officer safety to heart, but our actions as law enforcement officers need to reflect both the legal and community standards, as well as the practices and policies of our police department,” said Paul.

He went on to ask that residents treat “our police officers with the respect that their positions deserve, and I assure you that the men and women of the Baton Rouge Police Department will reciprocate that gesture.”

“Please stop resisting, stop running. When the police officer gives you direction, listen. Please, it’s important,” he said and encouraged residents to file a complaint if they feel they were treated unjustly by Baton Rouge police.

“We want to hear about it, we want to know about it. Because this is what happens, when you do that..we get to learn if our police officers are responding to the training and the policies and procedures that we have in place,” he continued. “But we don’t know that unless you pick up the phone and tell us.”

Paul also vowed to hold one-on-one meetings with each officer in the department to explain his decision to fire Salamoni and suspend Lake, as well as to reassure them that he supports law enforcement.

Earlier in the week, Baton Rouge Attorney General Jeff Landry announced that he would not be filing criminal charges in the case, and concluded that “both officers acted in a reasonable manner.” A separate investigation by the Department of Justice returned “insufficient evidence” as to whether or not  Sterling’s civil rights were violated.

In graphic body cam footage released Friday, Sterling can be heard referring to the officers as “sir” and repeatedly asking what he did to warrant an arrest.

“Don’t f*cking move! I’ll shoot your a**, b*tch!” Salamoni yells while Sterling is being held by the back of the neck and told to put his hands on the squad car before his hands are forced behind his back. Though it appears that both officers spew expletives at Sterling, Salamoni holds a gun to the 37 year old's head and threatens to pull the trigger.

Next, he orders Lake to “taze his f*cking a**” before keeping his promise to shoot Sterling in the head, after he was tasered for a second time.

You can view footage below but please be warned that the video is extremely graphic and disturbing.

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Kanye West Tells David Letterman That Liberals Are Bullying Donald Trump Supporters

Ahead of David Letterman’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction return to Netflix (May 31), details about the veteran interviewer’s upcoming conversation with Kanye West has hit the Internet. According to The Daily Beast, the pair discuss mental health, Drake fallout, and his views on Donald Trump.

In 2018, West used various platforms from TMZ to his personal Twitter account to express his controversial and political standing as it relates to his support of Trump. While he caught flack for it, West told Letterman that everyone should have the right to stand tall in their beliefs.

“This is like my thing with Trump—we don’t have to feel the same way, but we have the right to feel what we feel,” he said. The father-of-four also admitted that he’s “never voted in my life,” and that those who cast a ballot for Trump were “treated like enemies of America because that’s what they felt.” He added that “Liberals bully people who are Trump supporters!”

The Daily Beast also reported on West’s address of mental health. Here, he pinpointed how the masses interpreted his statements, inadvertently referring to his viral interview on TMZ. “When you’re bipolar, you have the potential to ramp up and it can take you to a point where you start acting erratic, as TMZ would put it,” he said. West continued to unpack his views on mental health, saying, “If you guys want these crazy ideas and these crazy stages and this crazy music and this crazy way of thinking, there’s a chance it might come from a crazy person."

In an interview with Willie Geist of “Sunday Today,” Letterman said he didn’t know what to expect ahead of his sit-down with the Ye rapper. “I was frightened honestly because I had only met him a couple of times on the show, and I knew that depending on the day, you weren’t quite sure which path you were going to be on,” he said.

Watch a teaser for the series below.

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Solange Announces Performance Piece 'Witness!' Will Premiere In September

Solange is the composer and director of a special performance piece titled "Witness!" The piece will be performed on September 17 at Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, Germany.

"So excited to announce “Witness!” a special performance piece composed and directed by myself at the phenomenal @elbphilharmonie (photo’d here:)," she wrote on Instagram to accompany a photo of the event flyer, which features the picturesque venue. Tickets for the performance go on sale on May 31.

The Houston native is no stranger to elaborate stage productions and intricate, detail-driven performances. She's performed in places such as the Guggenheim and Marfa's Chinati Foundation, so we're sure "Witness!" will be one to remember.

Earlier this year, Solange dropped her performance slot at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival, citing "major production delays" as the cause for cancellation. "She sends her sincerest apologies, and looks forward to performing at Coachella in the future," the official Coachella Twitter page read.

The performance coincides with the release of her latest studio-album, When I Get Home. Check out her announcement below.

 

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so excited to announce “Witness!” a special performance piece composed and directed by myself at the phenomenal @elbphilharmonie (photo’d here:) tickets on sale friday may 31 🖤!

A post shared by @ saintrecords on May 23, 2019 at 5:10pm PDT

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Drake Riles Up Fans After Toronto Raptors’ Game 5 Win

Drake is going viral for his latest display of hometown affection. The Toronto Raptors’ global ambassador unleashed his excitement behind the NBA team’s Game 5 win (May 23), and gave an impassioned post-game speech ahead of Saturday's match-up against the Milwaukee Bucks.

“We have the best player, we have the best fans in the whole NBA, in the whole world,” Drake said. “Look around you, look at this. We created this. This didn’t exist before we were here. Look around at the square. I promise you right now, we did this. Doesn’t matter what anybody says. They can say it’s disrespectful, they can say it’s this and that; everybody’s within the rules, everybody’s doing their thing. All we are is proud and passionate. We are like a college sports team. The Toronto Raptors are a college sports team, I promise you. I love Toronto, I love this team and we’re going to the NBA Finals.”

The Views rapper's passionate display arrives days after sports commentators and viewers discussed his court-side actions. Even ESPN's Stephen A. Smith dissected Drizzy's fandom and highlighted other celebrities' gestures on the court.

On Thursday evening, the Raptors defeated the Bucks 105-99 to advance to a 3-2 Eastern Conference Finals standing. The win arrives after a double overtime matchup during Game 4. The Raptors will have home court advantage on Saturday (May 25). The team to reach four wins first will face-off against the reigning champions, the Golden State Warriors, who defeated the Houston Rockets within a six-game series.

After “weathering the storm,” Raptors’ small forward Kawhi Leonard said he’s looking forward to the series’ continuation. “We’re taking it one game at a time and I’m just excited we got the win tonight,” he said.

"I love Toronto, I love this team and we're going to the NBA Finals."

—Drake after Game 5

(via @WISN12News)pic.twitter.com/2YjKIeKjQk

— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 24, 2019

"We play in an American league and I promise you a Canadian team is going to the NBA Finals."

Drake spoke to the fans in Toronto after the Game 5 win. (via @turcottespencer) pic.twitter.com/w1hayO65pl

— ESPN (@espn) May 24, 2019

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