News Headlines 4/16/21

EIGHT KILLED IN SHOOTING AT INDIANAPOLIS FEDEX FACILITY: Eight people were killed in a shooting at an Indianapolis Fedex facility late yesterday (April 15th), and at least four others were hospitalized, including one person with critical injuries. Police said in a early Friday morning news briefing that the suspected gunman killed himself. A man who works at the Fedex facility named Jeremiah Miller told local station WISH-TV, “I saw a man with a submachine gun of some sort, an automatic rifle, and he was firing in the open.”

U.S. IMPOSING SANCTIONS ON RUSSIA, EXPELLING DIPLOMATS OVER HACKING, ELECTION INTERFERENCE: The administration announced yesterday (April 15th) that the U.S. is imposing sanctions on several dozen Russian people and companies and is expelling 10 Russian diplomats in response to the massive SolarWinds hacking of federal agencies and to efforts to interfere in last year’s presidential election. President Biden said at the White House, “We cannot allow a foreign power to interfere in our democratic process with impunity.” He also said they could have taken even stronger measures, but chose not to in the interest of maintaining stability. Russia promised a response.

One of the people targeted was Russian and Ukrainian political consultant Konstantin Kilimnik, who worked with former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and was indicted in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. The Treasury Department said yesterday that Kilimnik had given, quote, “sensitive information on polling and campaign strategy” to Russian intelligence services in 2016. Mueller’s report said it had been unable to determine what Kilimnik had done with the polling data after getting it from the Trump campaign.

No sanctions were imposed for reports that Russia encouraged the Taliban to attack U.S. troops in Afghanistan, with the White House saying Biden was using diplomatic, military and intelligence channels to respond. Officials said they had only low to moderate confidence in intelligence from last year that Russia had put out “bounties” for attacks on U.S. troops.

BODYCAM VIDEO RELEASED OF 13-YEAR-OLD BOY KILLED BY CHICAGO POLICE: Bodycam video was released yesterday (April 15th) of the fatal shooting by Chicago police of a 13-year-old boy, after a public outcry over the boy’s March 29th death. The video shows Adam Toledo appearing to drop a gun and begin raising his hands less than second before Officer Eric Stillman shot him once in the chest. Police had responded to reports of shots fired in the area and say Toledo had a gun before he was shot. Stillman is heard yelling at the boy to stop as he ran after Toledo, and yells, “Hands! Hands! Show me your (expletive) hands!” Toledo then turns toward the camera, Stillman yells “Drop it!” and between repeating that  command he opens fire and hits Toledo. Stillman’s attorney said Toledo left the officer no choice but to shoot. Mayor Lori Lightfoot asked the public to remain calm, but condemned the city’s history of police violence and misconduct.

DEFENSE RESTS IN CHAUVIN TRIAL, HE DOESN’T TESTIFY: The defense rested in former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin‘s murder and manslaughter trial in the death of George Floyd yesterday (April 15th) after Chauvin chose not to testify. He told the judge, with the jury not in the room, that he was invoking his Fifth Amendment right not to testify. The defense rested its case soon after. In the case’s final testimony, the prosecution briefly recalled a lung and critical care expert to reject a defense witness’ speculation that inhaling carbon monoxide from a car’s exhaust might have contributed to Floyd’s death. The expert said that tests showed Floyd’s carbon monoxide level was in the normal range. Closing arguments are set to begin Monday.