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BERKELEY, Mo. (AP) — A protester who advocated for peaceful demonstrations in Ferguson was charged Saturday with setting fire to a convenience store in a neighboring suburb.

A St. Louis County jail official said Joshua Williams, 19, of St. Louis, was being held on $30,000 bond. He is charged with arson, second-degree burglary and stealing less than $500. Williams, who was frequently quoted and photographed protesting Michael Brown’s death, is accused of using lighter fluid to set multiple fires inside and outside a QuikTrip in Berkeley. Court records said Williams confessed in a videotaped interview, and that his actions were captured by surveillance video and by news media.

The QuikTrip was looted after a white Berkeley police officer shot and killed Antonio Martin, a black 18-year-old, late Tuesday at a nearby gas station. Separate surveillance footage appeared to show that before the shooting, Martin pulled a gun on the unidentified 34-year-old officer.

St. Louis County police spokesman Shawn McGuire said it wasn’t immediately known if Williams had an attorney. Williams didn’t immediately return a phone message.

Williams has been arrested at least twice during Ferguson-related protests for unlawful assembly as well as refusal to disperse.

An MSNBC profile of Williams in September quoted him as saying, “We have to come together as one and show them we can be peaceful, that we can do this. If not, they’re going to just want us to act up so they can pull out their toys on us again.”

During a Ferguson Commission meeting earlier this month, Williams said black people should be able to walk into stores without being followed around like thieves.

“When the police go out there in their uniforms, they don’t see nothing but thugs,” he said. “All they see is targets in the streets.”


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FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — A 24-year-old police officer and a suspect died after a shootout Saturday afternoon.

Officer Tyler J. Stewart, 24, died at Flagstaff Medical Center after he was shot by a man who was a suspect in a domestic-violence case, police said. Stewart is the second Flagstaff police officer ever to be killed in the line of duty. On June 21, 2000, Officer Jeff Moritz, 30, was killed after he pulled over a teenager as the teen drove around his neighborhood in a truck playing loud rap music. Stewart was looking for the man — identified as Robert W. Smith, 28, of Prescott — about 1:30 p.m. in the 800 block of West Clay Avenue when Smith fired several shots at the officer, police said. Smith then shot himself and was pronounced dead at the scene, police added.

Investigators do not believe Stewart fired any shots, but they continue to investigate the matter, Sgt. Margaret Bentzen said.

Stewart was taken to Flagstaff Medical Center in critical condition and later died, police said.

Stewart had worked at the department for less than a year, police said. He was a graduate of Boulder Creek High School in Anthem, Arizona, and Concordia College in California, police said.

“This is an enormous tragedy for our department and the family of our Officer. We are a very close knit organization, and know that all members of the Flagstaff Police Department are grieving at this time. With that being said, all of the men and women of the Flagstaff Police Department extend our prayers and condolences to the family of our Officer Tyler Stewart,” Chief Kevin Treadway said in a statement.

“It is heartbreaking to lose one of our officers,” Mayor Jerry Nabours said. “We collectively mourn for his family and the entire department.”

A candlelight vigil has been scheduled by Stewart’s family and the Flagstaff Police Department for 5:30 p.m. Sunday at the Officer Down Memorial Statue at the front of the police department at 911 E. Sawmill.

The shooting was the second one of a police officer in northern Arizona in the past three months. In October, a tribal police officer of the Navajo Nation was shot in the face during a shootout with a male suspect in the town of Kaibeto, which is 75 miles north of Flagstaff. The officer survived.


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VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Turkish gunman who shot and wounded John Paul II in 1981 laid white flowers Saturday on the saint’s tomb in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican officials said.

The surprise visit by Mehmet Ali Agca, believed to be his first time in the Vatican since the assassination attempt, lasted a few minutes, a Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, said. As with other flowers left by visitors to the tomb, the blossoms were later removed by basilica workers.

Benedettini said there are no legal matters pending against Agca in the Vatican and he was free to visit. Agca’s trip came on the 31st anniversary of his meeting with the pope.

John Paul, who forgave his attacker, visited Agca in a Rome prison on Dec. 27, 1983, and later intervened to gain Agca’s release in 2000. Agca was extradited to Turkey For the 1979 killing of a Turkish journalist and he completed a 10-year sentence there in 2010.

When Agca was apprehended after shooting the pontiff in St. Peter’s Square during a public audience, the Turk said he acted alone. Later he suggested Bulgaria and the Soviet secret services masterminded the attack on the Polish-born pontiff, whose championing of the Polish Solidarity labor movement alarmed Moscow.

Twice, Italian juries acquitted three Bulgarians and three Turks of alleged roles in the shooting. Agca has often given contradictory accounts and has claimed to be a Messiah.

Italian TV ran a brief video of the tomb visit, apparently filmed by an Italian journalist accompanying Agca in the basilica. The Turk is heard to mumble, “A thousand thanks, saint,” and “Long live Jesus Christ.”

He also said: “Today I have come because on Dec. 27, 1983, I met the pope.”


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A 24-year-old Flagstaff, Arizona rookie police officer was killed after being shot by a suspect in a domestic violence investigation on Saturday, the department said.

The suspect died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said.

Officer Tyler Jacob Stewart was shot in the face while following up on a domestic violence case at around 1:30 p.m. MT in the area of 800 block of West Clay Avenue, when the suspect came out of a house and began shooting. It appeared as if the suspect shot at the Officer Stewart multiple times before he turned the gun on himself, Sgt. Margaret Bentzen said.

Stewart, who was in his police car as the suspect emerged, was taken to Flagstaff Medical Center in critical condition after being hit by gunfire, but later died of his injuries, Bentzen told KNXV.

The suspect, identified by police as 28-year-old Robert W. Smith, was wanted for questioning in a domestic violence investigation, KSAZ reported.

Stewart had been with the department less than a year, the department told CBS News. Offering condolences to the family of Stewart, Flagstaff Police Chief Kevin Treadway said, “This is an enormous tragedy for our department and the family of our office.”

The Flagstaff Police Department’s spokesperson had not yet replied to inquiries from the Huffington Post.

The killing of Officer Stewart occurred hours after thousands gathered in New York City for the funeral of NYPD Police Officer Rafael Ramos, one of two NYPD officers shot and killed in an ambush last Saturday.


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About 200 people gathered Saturday at the Pink Houses in East New York, Brooklyn, for a march to protest the death of Akai Gurley, who was shot and killed inside the housing project by an NYPD officer in November. The march was organized by AnswerCoalition.org and other groups.

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Christine Yvette-Lewis, 46, is an organizer for Domestic Workers United who said she came to the protest to remind people of Gurley’s untimely death. “The struggle for human rights and justice brought me here,” Yvette-Lewis said. “I’m here to represent the masses of women who take care of children, and the children who were lost.”

She said the rally was not meant to offend police officers who attended today’s funeral of murdered NYPD officer Rafael Ramos, but to express that all lives matter. Ramos and his partner were ambushed and killed Dec. 20 in Brooklyn.

“Who mourned for Eric Garner when his life was snuffed out of his body?” she said. “Who mourned for Michael Brown? Who mourns for Akai? The city was business as usual. All lives matter. The policemen’s lives matter, but so does Akai’s.”

NYPD rookie Peter Liang was conducting a “vertical patrol” — a sweep of often-dark staircases — inside the Pink Houses on Nov. 21, when he accidentally discharged his weapon, he said, after being startled by Gurley, who happened to be entering the stairwell below with his girlfriend. The gunfire killed Gurley, who was 28.

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Christine Yvette-Lewis protests the killing of Akai Gurley in Brooklyn on Saturday.

Karen Blondel, an engineer technician participating in the march, said she was there to represent Gurley.

“I feel terrible that he was killed for no reason in a stairwell,” Blondel said.

During the march, Blondel approached a group police officers and asked that the “good cops” set an example for the “bad cops.”

“Show them how they should be responding,” Blondel said while holding a sign that read, “Racism Is A Deadly Force.” “I know there are good cops out there. I’m asking [good police officers] to step forward.”

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Akai Gurley’s 2-year-old daughter, Akaila.

New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said the shooting was “an unfortunate accident,” and called Gurley “a total innocent.”

The New York Daily News reported that in the minutes after the shooting, Liang texted his union representative before contacting his partner or calling for medical assistance.

Kenneth P. Thompson, Brooklyn’s district attorney, announced in early December that he would impanel a grand jury to investigate the case.


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Anahim Lake homicide

RCMP responding to reports of shots fired found two men dead inside a house in a rural area of Anahim Lake, B.C. on Boxing Day.


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Starlin Castro was questioned by authorities in the Dominican Republic after a nightclub shooting in which several people were injured.