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National
Slain transgender Kansas City woman in is 2nd in city, 20st across U.S. in 2019
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Slain transgender Kansas City woman in is 2nd in city, 20st across U.S. in 2019

Police: Kansas City man arrested for murder of transgender woman

Slain transgender Kansas City woman in is 2nd in city, 20st across U.S. in 2019

A Kansas City man has been arrested in the killing Monday of a transgender woman, the second to die in the city so far this year and at least the 20th across the nation, authorities said.

The Associated Press reported that Brianna “BB” Hill, 30, also of Kansas City, was shot around 11:30 a.m. Monday. Hill, who went by Breonna Be’Be Hill on Facebook, was dead when officers arrived at the scene.

>> Read more trending news

Kansas City police Capt. Tim Hernandez told the AP that the alleged shooter, whose name has not been released, remained at the scene and was taken into custody. As of Wednesday, no charges had been filed, the news service said.

Hernandez said he could not discuss the motive for the shooting but said it was not related to Hill’s status as a transgender woman, the AP reported.

Hill is the second transgender woman killed so far this year in Kansas City, records show. According to the Human Rights Campaign, she is the 21st transgender woman or gender nonconforming person to die by violence across the country in 2019.

The Advocate puts the nationwide number of slain transgender women at 20, however, noting some confusion about the gender identity of one victim, Jamagio Jamar Berryman.

“Transgender Americans are facing an epidemic of violence,” the Advocate reported, citing 24 known killings of transgender Americans in 2018. The magazine said the number could be higher “as, undoubtedly, some victims were misgendered by police or media, or their deaths not reported at all.”

“The majority of victims in any year tracked by The Advocate have been women of color,” the magazine stated.

Click here to see a report by the Advocate on all the transgender people killed so far in 2019.

Hill, who was black, was killed the day before jury selection was set to begin in Dallas for Edward Dominic Thomas, 29, who is accused of beating another black, transgender woman, Muhlaysia Booker, in April following a fender bender outside an apartment complex in the Oak Cliff section of the city.

Booker, whose beating was caught on video, spoke publicly at a rally the week after the assault to call for justice in her case, the AP reported.

The 23-year-old was found shot to death May 18 on a Dallas street. Kendrell Lavar Lyles, 33, is charged with murder in the killing and is a suspect in the homicides of two additional women.

Dallas Morning News via AP
Muhlaysia Booker is comforted April 20, 2019, as she speaks during a rally in Dallas. Booker, a 22-year-old transgender woman seen on video being beaten April 12 in front of a crowd, was found shot to death Saturday, May 18 on a Dallas street.
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Slain transgender Kansas City woman in is 2nd in city, 20st across U.S. in 2019

Photo Credit: Dallas Morning News via AP
Muhlaysia Booker is comforted April 20, 2019, as she speaks during a rally in Dallas. Booker, a 22-year-old transgender woman seen on video being beaten April 12 in front of a crowd, was found shot to death Saturday, May 18 on a Dallas street.

>> Related story: Suspect arrested in death of transgender Dallas woman and 2 others, police say

The Dallas Morning News reported Wednesday that Thomas’ defense is arguing that Booker, who his attorneys call by her birth name and describe with male pronouns, brought the fight upon herself.

Transgender actress and activist Laverne Cox spoke to Buzzfeed earlier this year about the rash of violence against the transgender community.

“Your attraction to me as a trans woman is not a reason to kill me,” Cox said in an interview on BuzzFeed News’ Twitter morning show, “AM to DM.” “There’s this whole sort of myth that trans women are out there tricking people, that they deserve to be murdered, and that’s not the case.”

Berryman, who also went by Ja’leyah-Jamar Berryman, was killed last month just across the Missouri state line in Kansas City, Kansas.

Though area activists initially identified Berryman as a transgender woman, Berryman’s family released a video on social media clarifying that he identified as a gender nonconforming man.

Berryman was found shot in the street around 2:30 p.m. Sept. 13 near 60th Street and Leavenworth Road, according to the Kansas City (Kansas) Police Department. Berryman died a short time later at an area hospital.

Two days later, investigators released images of a person of interest and a white 2006 Pontiac G6 connected to the case. KMBC reported that the car was found abandoned in Kansas City, Missouri, three days after Berryman was slain.

The person of interest, believed to be an ex-boyfriend of Berryman’s, has not been identified by police, the Advocate said. No arrests have been reported in Berryman’s death.

Berryman’s cousin posted about his death on Facebook.

“Ja’leyah-Jamar didn’t ask for this life,” Adriana Sanders wrote, according to the magazine. “No one can control who they love. God made us to live and love and to grow. It’s not our fault as a transgender woman or a homosexual man to want to live a normal life, wanting to be in love have a family, build your own legacy.

“Because a man could not accept who he was as himself and individual, he felt the need to take my cousin’s life.”

Berryman’s obituary said he “loved the artistry of designing hair, playing his game, playing with his nieces and nephews, nagging his siblings and spending quality time with his daughter, Ja’mya (Berryman).”

Ja’mya was 5 years old when she lost her parent, KSHB in Kansas City reported.

“She keeps, like (saying), ‘I want my daddy, where my daddy at?’ And it’s just, like, how do you answer that question to a 5-year-old?" Ronnie Gates, a friend and former longtime boyfriend of Berryman’s, told the news station.

Berryman’s mother, along with other family members and friends, mourned Berryman by releasing red and black balloons in his honor three days after his killing. They gathered at the intersection where he was found.

His young daughter was pictured sitting quietly on the sidewalk, wearing a backpack and gazing at the balloons near the curb.

“That’s Jamar’s baby. She is now without a father,” a family member captioned the photo.

“I’ll never be the same,” Berryman’s mother, Jennifer Gibson, told KSHB. “I’ll never be the same.”

The Human Rights Campaign, which touts itself as the nation’s largest LGBTQ civil rights organization, issued a statement following Berryman’s slaying.

“This epidemic of violence that disproportionately targets trans people of color -- particularly black trans women -- must cease,” read a post on the organization’s Twitter feed.

Likewise, HRC officials spoke out this week about Hill’s killing.

“Hill, like all of us, had hopes, dreams, aspirations and plans for the future,” HRC spokesperson Elliott Kozuch told Newsweek. “She had family and friends who are mourning this senseless loss, a loss that is part of a larger epidemic of violence against the transgender community in this country, spurred by a toxic mix of transphobia, racism, misogyny and unchecked gun violence.”

Kozuch said while the transgender community has protections in employment, housing and public accommodations in Kansas City, there are no state nondiscrimination protections for the marginalized community.

Transgender people are also not among the groups covered by Missouri’s hate crimes legislation. According to HRC data, all but five states across the country have laws addressing hate crimes, but the laws vary greatly in who they protect.

Fifteen states do not address sexual orientation or gender identity in their hate crime laws, the HRC shows.

See the Human Rights Campaign's map of hate crime laws in the U.S. below.

Members of the LGBTQ community mourned Hill’s death on social media.

“Rest in power, beloved,” one woman wrote on Facebook, adding a broken heart emoji. “Brianna Hill. #SayHerName.”

Transgender actress, singer, teacher and activist Alexandra Billings also spoke out about Hill and every other transgender woman who has been killed or faces violence for who they are.

“My sisters, I see you,” Billings wrote on Facebook. “I am with you because I am one of you, and we will survive this. Our government will not continue to ignore us, and our allies will speak up. We will revolt and we will rise. We are made of sturdy stuff. We have lived through the centuries and it will take more than a few violent men to eradicate us from the human experience.

“We are part of this world and we deserve to be here. We will not let this stand.”

Besides the death of Berryman, Hill’s slaying in Kansas City also comes on the heels of the June 25 killing of Brooklyn Lindsey, 32, who was found dead on the porch of an abandoned home on Spruce Avenue, court records show. She died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Neighbors, who didn’t identify themselves out of fear of retaliation, told KCTV Lindsey had been badly beaten before they heard the gunshots that killed her.

According to court records, investigators recovered five shell casings from around Lindsey’s body and tested the casings for DNA evidence. A profile was obtained and entered into CODIS, the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System, which matched the genetic material to Marcus S. Lewis.

Investigators learned that Lewis was in a relationship with the owner of a black Chevy Impala. The car was spotted by license plate readers driving in the area of the shooting around the time that the Kansas City Police Department received a report of shots fired about four blocks from where Lindsey’s body was found.

Read the probable cause statement in the Brooklyn Lindsey slaying below.

Charging Document in Brooklyn Lindsey Homicide by National Content Desk on Scribd

Lewis, 41, was arrested in July and indicted last month on charges of second-degree murder, armed criminal action and unlawful possession of a firearm, court records show.

Court records, which identify Lindsey as male and by her given name instead of her chosen one, show that Lewis told detectives he shot Lindsey after she propositioned him, “attempting to solicit a date,” and would not leave him alone after he declined her advances.

He said he sold the gun, which he had bought earlier in the day, to an unknown person after the homicide.

“l believe that Marcus Lewis poses a danger to the community or to any other persons because he is a habitual unregistered sex offender,” Detective Ryan Taylor wrote in a probable cause statement. “He is under investigation for aggravated domestic violence involving a firearm and an armed business robbery involving a firearm.”

Court records indicate Lewis has also been indicted in that case. He remained in the Jackson County Jail Friday, awaiting trial.

The unlawful firearm possession charge stems from Lewis’ April 1998 conviction of first-degree statutory rape, a felony in Missouri. As a convicted felon, he is not permitted to have a firearm.

Lindsey was described by friends as an activist who worked with organizations like the Kansas City Anti-Violence Project. The organization spoke out last month after Berryman’s death.

“As we hold space to remember and uplift Ja’Leyah, we must also recognize the factors at play that contribute to the dramatically increased risk of violence that trans women of color, especially black trans women, face every day,” a post on the group’s Facebook page read. “Restrictions on basic needs and services like housing, employment, safe streets, healthcare and protection under the law are just some barriers that put our sisters in harm’s way daily.

“The discriminatory and violent systems that perpetuate violence against transgender women of color are a direct result of bias from within and outside our own communities. Ja’leyah’s light shone to a select few, but we will let her light shine on all of us today.”

Kris Wade, with the Justice Project Kansas City, told CNN she knew Lindsey well and had helped her for more than a decade. She described Lindsey as a “sweetheart,” and an intelligent woman who did not come from the streets, but sometimes ended up there.

“She felt that she had not lost her humanity out there,” Wade told CNN.

Wade said Lindsey, who had been brutally beaten and hospitalized just weeks before her death, needed to get off the street, but Justice Project was unable to find her a bed.

“We didn’t have any money to put her up,” Wade said.

Lindsey died at the same intersection where a Hispanic transgender woman, Tamara Dominguez, 36, was run over and killed Aug. 15, 2015. The driver of the truck, Luis Sanchez, ran over Dominguez repeatedly, according to witnesses.

Members of the LGBTQ community condemned the “atrocious” act in the days after Dominguez’s death.

“There’s this horrible dark underbelly of hatred that goes on and on and on and on and it must stop,” Caroline Gibbs, director of the Transgender Institute of Kansas City, told KCTV at the time.

Dominguez’s brother, Alberto Dominguez, spoke to the news station through a friend, Juan Rendon, who translated his Spanish to English.

“He just want to say to the person that did that to her, that he (Alberto) would forgive them for what he did to her,” Rendon translated as Dominguez started to cry, the news station reported. “We are not here to judge nobody, and he (Alberto) hopes that person really feels bad for what he did.”

Sanchez, who was initially charged with murder, was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in December 2018 and sentenced to 18 years in prison. Now 31, he is serving his sentence at the Jefferson City Correctional Center, according to the Missouri Department of Corrections.

Tamara Dominguez was loved, her brother told KCTV.

“He doesn’t know she has family. She had her mom. She had her nephews, brothers and sisters. That person didn’t think about what he did,” Rendon translated.

Read More

News

  • Protests and demonstrations have led to violence in at least 30 cities across the United States in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis. Floyd, 46, died after he was detained for questioning regarding a possible forgery in progress. Video of his death caught by bystanders showed a Minneapolis police officer, identified as Derek Chauvin, holding his knee to Floyd’s neck for more than five minutes as Floyd pleaded for air, sparking outrage. As of Sunday, at least 25 cities across 16 states have imposed curfews. Live updates continue below: Detroit announces curfew Update 3:45 p.m. EDT May 31: Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said at a news conference that a curfew will go into effect from 8 p.m. to 5 p.m. beginning Monday and will remain that way until the city’s chief of police decides to rescind it. Duggan said he made the decision after the number of people arrested from outside the Detroit area went up last night. A total of 84 people were arrested Saturday night, Duggan said. Protests go global with demonstrations in London, Berlin Update 3:28 p.m. EDT May 31: Demonstrators gathered nationwide to protest the death of George Floyd, but there were gatherings overseas in support of the Minneapolis man who died Monday. In London, hundreds of protesters held a rally at Trafalgar Square and gathered outside the U.S Embassy, The Washington Post reported. In Berlin and Toronto, protesters waved “I can’t breathe” signs, the newspaper reported. Washington governor activates 200 more National Guardsmen for Seattle Update 3:19 p.m. EDT May 31: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee activated 200 more members of the state’s National Guard after a second request from the city of Seattle, a statement from the governor’s office said. The National Guard members, who will be unarmed, will help clean up, protect against property damage and manage crowds and traffic during downtown protests, the statement said. “Saturday’s disheartening events in Seattle -- carried out by a smattering of the thousands of protesters on hand – will not deter the cause of justice,' Inslee said. “Hundreds of public servants and volunteers are already helping clean up the property damage done.' San Francisco under curfew indefinitely Update 3:01 p.m. EDT May 31: San Francisco Mayor London Breed confirmed the city’s 8 p.m. curfew will be in effect indefinitely, The Associated Press reported.California has committed 200 law enforcement personnel to assist the San Francisco Police Department, Breed said at a news conference. City officials also confirmed that there was “significant  Denver police make 83 arrests Update 2:18 p.m. EDT May 31: According to a tweet from the Denver Police Department, 83 people were arrested during protests overnight. Charges included curfew violations, damaging property and having prohibited weapons. Two weapons were recovered by police. More than 60 Secret Service agents injured near White House Update 1:58 p.m. EDT May 31: More than 60 Secret Service officers and agents have been injured since Friday night near the White House as protests were held in Washington, D.C., according to a statement from the agency. The officers and agents were hurt when protesters threw “projectiles such as bricks, rocks, bottles, fireworks and other items,” according to the statement. “Personnel were also directly physically assaulted as they were kicked, punched and exposed to bodily fluids.” DC police chief says 17 were arrested during protests Update 1:48 p.m. EDT May 31: Peter Newsham, the police chief in Washington, D.C., said at a news conference that 17 people were arrested during protests in the nation’s capital Saturday night. Eleven officers were injured during the protests, but none had life-threatening injuries, Newsham said. One officer had surgery Sunday after suffering multiple compound fractures to his leg after a protester threw a rock at him, Newsham added. Chicago mayor restricts vehicle, transit access downtown Update 1:17 p.m. EDT May 31: Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot announced the restriction of vehicle and transit action downtown, and called for help from the National Guard after demonstrations turned violent in the city, The Associated Press reported. Lightfoot’s moves come after six people were shot and one person was killed in the Loop area Saturday night. Trump: US will designate Antifa as terrorist organization Update 1:03 p.m. EDT May 31: President Donald Trump tweeted Sunday afternoon that he would designate Antifa as a terrorist organization. Antifa, or anti-fascists to the far left politically but do not align themselves with the Democratic Party’s platform, CNN reported. Atlanta mayor extends curfew until Monday Update 12:50 p.m. EDT May 31: Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms signed an executive order “extending curfew in the entire territorial jurisdiction of the City of Atlanta,” according to a tweet from the city. The curfew will begin at 9 p.m. EDT and will end at sunrise Monday, WSB-TV reported. Cuomo: Attorney general will review protests Update 12:42 p.m. EDT May 31: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he will ask the state’s attorney general to review the demonstrations that occurred across the state Saturday night. “Last night was a long and ugly night all across this nation as we know,” Cuomo said at a news conference. “We’ve seen a lot of disturbing video about the protests.' Cuomo said he expected similar protests Sunday. “We’re preparing for such,” Cuomo said. Computers in Minnesota attacked, governor says Update 12:23 p.m. EDT May 31: Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said state computers were attacked Saturday. “Before our operation kicked off last night, a very sophisticated denial of service attack on all state computers was executed,” Walz said during a news conference.. “That’s not somebody sitting in their basement,” Walz said.. 41 arrested after protests in Tampa Update 12:16 p.m. EDT May 31: Jane Castor, the mayor of Tampa, Florida, and police Chief Brian Dugan went on Facebook Live on Sunday morning to tell peaceful protestors to stay home after 41 people were arrested Saturday night. “It’s a different tone right now,” Dugan said. “As the day went on, you could see the tensions start to rise. You can see the peaceful protesters go home and then start to see people who didn’t have the best intentions.” Castor called the violence 'shameful” and “heartbreaking for our community,” the Tampa Bay Times reported. “It did not reflect our community and the values we share,” Castor said. “What I saw last night happens in other cities, it does not happen in Tampa.” “Make no mistake, there are systematic issues that need to be addressed. We share your anger over the death of George Floyd and the hopes and expectations of tomorrow,” Castor said. “But this behavior solves nothing. Solutions take time.” St. Paul mayor seeks 'peace, not patience’ Update 11:46 a.m. EDT May 31: Melvin Carter, the mayor of St. Paul, Minnesota, said his city did not need military assistance to restore order in his city, but rather to receive assurances that someone would be held accountable in the death of George Floyd on Monday, The New York Times reported. On CNN’s “State of the Union” program, Carter called for “peace, not patience,' adding that the video of Floyd’s death was “disgusting” and “unacceptable.” “When all of humanity can look at this video and say ‘That’s disgusting, that’s unacceptable,’ and yet somehow we have four officers in the video, three of whom sat there and either helped hold Mr. Floyd down or stood guard over the scene while it happened, that is an incredible insult to humanity,” Flouyd said. Carter, whose father is a retired St. Paul police officer, rejected the theory that Floyd’s death was an isolated incident. “When you have four officers all involved in taking George Floyd’s life, it points to a normalized culture that’s accepted,' Carter said. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Racism is 'like dust in the air’ Update 11:17 a.m. EDT May 31: Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar writing an op-ed piece in Sunday’s Los Angeles Times, said racism in America was “like dust in the air.” “It seems invisible -- even if you’re choking on it -- until you let the sun in. Then you see it’s everywhere,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote. Abdul-Jabbar said he did not want to see looting and buildings being burned, but added that “African Americans have been living in a burning building for many years, choking on the smoke as the flames burn closer and closer.” “What I want to see is not a rush to judgment, but a rush to justice,” he wrote. Minnesota governor apologizes to journalists Update 11:04 a.m. EDT May 31: Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz apologized to journalistsafter they were detained Saturday night. “I want to once again extend my deepest apologies, to the journalists who were once again in the middle of this situation were inadvertently, but nevertheless, detained, to them personally and in to the news organizations and to journalists everywhere,” Walz said at a news conference Sunday. “It is unacceptable. I said when it happened the other day when I failed you,' Walz said. “I have to do better, I continue to need to do and send that message. I take full responsibility for that.” United Daughters of Confederacy headquarters set on fire Update 9:33 a.m. EDT May 31: The headquarters of the United Daughters of the Confederacy was set on fire in Richmond, Virginia, early Sunday, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Nine fire trucks and a police line three blocks long worked to put out the fire. Graffiti covered much of the building’s facade, with some obscenities sprayed on the walls. the newspaper. The word “abolition” was sprayed on the front steps. NYC protests net more than 340 arrests Update 9:17 a.m. EDT May 31: More than 340 people were arrested in protests held across New York City over the past 24 hours, CNN reported. At least 33 officers were injured during the protest, some of them seriously, a New York Police Department official told the cable network. Nearly 48 police vehicles were damaged or destroyed. Fox News urges Trump to give national address Update 8:39 a.m. EDT May 31: Fox News host Griff Jenkins urged President Donald Trump to address the nation as chaotic protests continued into Sunday morning following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. “I really believe it is time for President Trump to do an Oval Office address,” Jenkins said on “Fox and Friends Sunday.” “Remember George H.W. Bush’s address after the (Los Angeles) riots was one, by many political analysts’ reckoning, one of the most effective of his presidency,” Jenkins said. Bush addressed the nation on May 1, 1992, after Los Angeles Police officers were acquitted in the beating of Rodney King, The Washington Post reported. The acquittal sparked riots in Los Angeles. Target closes down 175 stores nationwide Update 7:18 a.m. EDT May 31: Target has temporarily closed 175 stores across the United States because of the nationwide protests. 'Our focus will remain on our team members’ safety and helping our community heal,' the retailer said in a statement. Target, based in Minneapolis, closed 71 stores In Minnesota, 49 in California, 12 in New York, while others were closed in various locations nationwide. Cars burned, stores looted in Seattle Update 6:36 a.m. EDT May 31: After several hours of peaceful gatherings and marches by thousands of people in Seattle protesting the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Seattle police said the crowd turned violent, throwing bottles and Molotov cocktails, setting fires, breaking windows and looting businesses in the downtown core. The damage stretched several city blocks, KIRO-TV reported Seattle police said multiple officers and citizens were injured when the violence broke out late Saturday afternoon. Seattle police Chief Carmen Best said so far, 27 people were arrested for a variety of offenses including assault, arson, destruction and looting. Ferguson Police Department building damaged Update 1:53 a.m. EDT May 31: The police department in Ferguson, Missouri was damaged and all non-essestial personnel were evacuated, according to a tweet by the St. Louis County Police Department. Multiple shootings in Indianapolis; 1 person killed Update 1:26 a.m. EDT May 31: At least three people were reported shot and one person was killed during protests in downtown Indianapolis on Saturday night, Indianapolis Police Chief Randal Taylor said in a news conference. A police officer also sustained minor injuries tonight, Taylor said. Taylor told residents to go home. “If you’re still down here tonight you are more than likely into something that you shouldn’t be and we want you to go home,” Taylor said. Stores looted, gas station set on fire in Florida Update 12:23 a.m. EDT May 31: Protesters looted stores, blocked roads and set a gas station on fire in Tampa. The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said at least three protesters were arrested near University Mall where looters broke into nearby businesses and stole merchandise, WFTS reported. Deputies used tear gas to keep demonstrators from entering the mall. “While we support everyone’s right to assemble, rioting, looting and vandalizing is unacceptable. We will be on the streets as long as needed in order to keep the protesters and those around them safe, however, we are asking that everyone respect their fellow citizens and the property of others. Anything less is unacceptable.” A gas station was also set on fire but firefighters were able to get the blaze under control before it reached the pumps.
  • More than 6 million people worldwide -- including more than 1.7 million in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. While efforts to contain the COVID-19 outbreak continue, states have begun to shift their focus toward reopening their economies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here. Live updates for Sunday, May 31, continue below: U.S. surpasses 104,000 deaths Update 3:55 p.m. EDT May 31: The United States has surpassed 104,000 deaths due to the novel coronavirus. The U.S. has the highest number of cases and the highest number of deaths worldwide. According to Johns Hopkins University, 104,081 people have died in the U.S. Second to the U.S. is the United Kingdom with 38,571 deaths. The U.S. also leads in the number of COVID-19 cases reported: 1,779,853. Second to the U.S. is Brazil with 465,116 cases reported. Rwanda reports first COVID-19 death Update 3 p.m. EDT May 31: Rwanda has reported the country’s first coronavirus-related death. A statement by the nation’s Ministry of Health said the man who died was a 65-year-old truck driver who had recently returned to Rwanda after living in a neighboring country for an unspecified amount of time. Health officials said the patient died due to severe respiratory complications after receiving treatment at an intensive care unit at a COVID-19 facility. According to Johns Hopkins University, Rwanda has 359 reported cases of the novel coronavirus. China reports only two new cases of COVID-19 Update 2:50 p.m. EDT May 31: China reported two new cases of COVID-19 in the country Sunday, noting that one of the two people was a German traveler. China has banned most foreigners from entering the country to try to prevent the introduction of new infections, but agreed to allow the two German flights to bring back businesspeople as it tries to revive economic growth after the coronavirus shutdowns. No new domestic cases have been reported for a week. India’s coronavirus cases increasing significantly Update 1:35 p.m. EDT May 31: India reported more than 8,000 new cases of the coronavirus in a single day, another record high that topped the deadliest week in the country. Confirmed infections have risen to 182,143, with 5,164 fatalities, including 193 in the last 24 hours, the Health Ministry said Sunday. Data shows the number of infections increasing exponentially in recent days. Only six countries have reported more coronavirus cases than India. There are concerns that the virus may be spreading through India’s villages as millions of jobless migrant workers return home from cities during the lockdown. Experts warn that the pandemic is yet to peak in India. Crowds return to St. Peter’s Square to hear Pope Francis Update 8:48 a.m. EDT May 31: Crowds returned to St. Peter’s Square as Pope Francis resumed his traditional greeting from his window, CNN reported. It was the first time the pontiff has addressed a live audience since the lockdown in Italy began three months ago. Francis said he hoped people would “have the courage to change, to be better than before and to positively build the post-pandemic world.” Tourists were absent and only a few hundred people gathered. They wore masks and adhered to social distancing to listen to Francis, CNN reported. US coronavirus cases surpass 1.7M, deaths top 103K Published 12:05 a.m. EDT May 31: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States continued to climb past 1.7 million early Saturday across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. According to a Johns Hopkins University tally, there are at least 1,747,085 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 102,836 deaths. The hardest-hit states remain New York with 369,660 cases and 29,710 deaths and New Jersey with 159,608 cases and 11,634 deaths. Massachusetts, with 95,512 cases, has the third-highest number of deaths with 6,768, while Illinois has the third-highest number of cases with 118,917. Only 16 states and territories have confirmed fewer than 6,000 cases each. Six other states have now confirmed at least 50,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including: • California: 109,509 cases, resulting in 4,136 deaths • Pennsylvania: 75,697 cases, resulting in 5,537 deaths • Texas: 62,675 cases, resulting in 1,652 deaths • Michigan: 56,969 cases, resulting in 5,464 deaths • Florida: 55,424 cases, resulting in 2,447 deaths • Maryland: 52,015 cases, resulting in 2,509 deaths Meanwhile, Georgia, Virginia and Connecticut each has confirmed at least 42,000 cases; Louisiana, Ohio and Indiana each has confirmed at least 34,000 cases; North Carolina, Colorado, Minnesota, Tennessee and Washington each has confirmed at least 21,000 cases; Iowa and Arizona each has confirmed at least 19,000 cases; Wisconsin and Alabama each has confirmed at least 17,000 cases; Mississippi and Rhode Island each has confirmed at least 14,000 cases; Nebraska and Missouri each has confirmed at least 13,000 cases, followed by South Carolina with 11,131; Kansas, Kentucky, Utah and Delaware each has confirmed at least 9,000 cases; the District of Columbia and Nevada each has confirmed at least 8,000 cases, followed by New Mexico with 7,493; Arkansas and Oklahoma each has confirmed at least 6,000 cases. Click here to see CNN’s state-by-state breakdown.
  • Seattle news station KIRO-TV captured video of a woman stealing a treat from a Cheesecake Factory location in the midst of riots following protests over the death of George Floyd. After several hours of peaceful gatherings and marches earlier Saturday, Seattle police said the crowd turned violent, throwing bottles, setting fires, breaking windows and looting businesses in the downtown area. Rioters, many wearing masks, looted and vandalized stores, including Nordstrom and Old Navy. Windows of the Cheesecake Factory were also smashed, and people were seen throwing bottles of alcohol outside. A KIRO-TV news crew that was recording footage of the scene captured footage of a woman wearing a mask walking away from the restaurant carrying an entire cheesecake on a serving tray. She also appeared to be carrying a wine glass and a champagne flute. The footage of the woman quickly gained traction on social media, where people tried to make light of the chaos. “She seems polite about it,” one Twitter user wrote. “With everything going on, sometimes you have to take a moment to treat yourself,” another person wrote. “It would have gone to waste otherwise,” someone responded. Others said the video made them laugh or smile in the midst of what has been a stressful week.
  • Do you feel lucky? Well, do ya? If you’re Clint Eastwood, there is plenty to feel lucky about. As an actor and director, Eastwood has been a presence in American movies for six decades. Eastwood turned 90 on Sunday. Whether he was a lone drifter in spaghetti westerns or rogue cop Harry Callahan, Eastwood has always had a presence. Eastwood was born May 31, 1930, in San Franciso. He was raised in Oakland, and before becoming an established movie star he played Rowdy Yates in the television western, “Rawhide.” But it is on the big screen where Eastwood made a sudden impact. According to Rolling Stone, Pauline Kael described Eastwood as “six feet four of lean, tough saint, blue-eyed and shaggy-haired, with a rugged, creased, careworn face that occasionally breaks into a mischief-filled grin.' In keeping with Eastwood’s stoic persona, his birthday celebration was supposed to be low-key. “We’re just going to do a family thing -- very, very calm, very mellow,” his 34-year-old actor son Scott told “Access Hollywood.” “We’ll sneak a cake in there, definitely. He probably won’t like it.” Eastwood has won five Academy Awards, with two films that won both Best Picture and Directing -- Unforgiven (1992) and Million Dollar Baby (2004). His fifth Oscar was the Irving Thalberg Memorial Award in 1995. Here is a look at five of Eastwood’s more memorable films: “A Fistful of Dollars' (1964): The first of a trio of westerns shot in Italy, Italian director Sergio Leone was persuaded to used Eastwood despite coveting Henry Fonda, James Coburn or Charles Bronson for the role of the Man With No Name. Eastwood is eerily intimidating with his poncho, his intense cigar-chewing and his fast trigger finger. “Fistful” was followed by “For a Few Dollars More” in 1965 and “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” in 1966. The latter movie is considered the best of the trilogy, with Lee Van Cleef cast as the “Bad” and Eli Wallach playing an amoral “Ugly” character. You know who was “Good.' “Dirty Harry” (1971): Eastwood was defined by the macho, .44-magnum toting police inspector in San Francisco. His character was so memorable in this Don Siegel film that Eastwood reprised the Callahan character in four more films -- “Magnum Force (1973), “The Enforcer” (1976), “Sudden Impact” (1983) and :”The Dead Pool' (1988). In “Dirty Harry,” Eastwood hunts down a serial killer named Scorpio, and utters the famous line with a sneer: “You’ve got to ask yourself a question. ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya, punk?” “Play Misty for Me” (1971): This marked Eastwood’s directorial debut, a film in which he plays a disc jockey in Northern California who picks up a woman at a bar (Jessica Walters). She is the same woman who calls the radio station where Eastwood works and requests the Errol Garner song, “Misty.” Far from being a macho character, Eastwood played a victim as the woman’s obsessive behavior nearly turns fatal. “Every Which Way But Loose” (1978): Rarely did anyone ever make a monkey out of Eastwood, but a beer-swilling orangutan named Clyde did just that in this comedy. Eastwood is able to punch out bad guys and deliver wise-cracking punchlines. “Right turn, Clyde” became a mantra for fans, and the film led to a sequel, 1980′s “Any Which Way You Can.” “The Mule”(2018): Only Eastwood could look intimidating as an 88-year-old. He plays Earl Stone, an out-of-business horticulturist who agrees to drive a truck to a town near the Mexican border. He later discovers he is hauling narcotics for a Mexican drug cartel. Eastwood plays senior citizens well, as “Gran Torino,' “American Sniper” and “Trouble With the Curve” prove. He might be old, but the icy stare remains. Other movies of note: “The Outlaw Josey Wales,” “Unforgiven,” “Million Dollar Baby,” “The Bridges of Madison County,” and his latest work, “Richard Jewell.” So, make his day and wish Clint Eastwood a happy birthday.
  • Target will close dozens of its locations nationwide - including two in metro Atlanta, due to ongoing protests and destructive rioting in the wake of George Floyd’s death. In Georgia, two locations in Buckhead will temporarily close.  The chain’s headquarters are based in Minneapolis, where Floyd’s death occurred while in police custody.  now former officer Derek Chauvin is charged in Floyd’s death.   “We are heartbroken by the death of George Floyd and the pain it is causing communities across the country. At this time, we have made the decision to close a number of our stores. We anticipate most stores will be closed temporarily. Our focus will remain on our team members’ safety and helping our community heal,” the company said in a statement. Target says employees at the closed stores will be paid for up to 14 days during store closures, including coronavirus pay, and also have the chance to work at other stores. From Channel 2 Action News: During the first night of protests Friday, Atlanta firefighters worked to put out a fire started in the back of the Target at 2539 Piedmont Road. Atlanta fire officials say fireworks were set off in multiple locations as well. Atlanta firefighters worked to put a second fire that happened in a storage room Saturday night. The department can’t say for sure right now if it’s arson, but fire investigators are on the way to see. Atlanta Battalion Chief Kendale Mitchell said part of the building may have been left unsecured from Friday’s protests. “This store was broken into earlier when we were experiencing the protests and the store hasn’t been fully secured all the way. I think they have security on site but may or may not. It’s undetermined if it was a break in at this time or not,” Mitchell said.    
  • Police departments in metro Atlanta on Sunday were preparing for more possible protests that would round out a weekend of demonstrations resulting in hundreds of arrests along with damage to storefronts and shops.  Gwinnett County police, which encountered protesters Saturday at the mall Sugarloaf Mills, said the department is only aware of “the potential for protests” to happen Sunday in Lawrenceville.  “The police department will have an increased presence across the county today and into the night,” spokeswoman officer Ashley Wilson said.  Two police cars were damaged and four people were arrested in Saturday’s protest in Gwinnett, the agency said.  See the AJC’s complete coverage of the Atlanta protests here. Lawrenceville Mayor David Still told the city’s Facebook followers that police are preparing for the potential of activity to crop up Sunday and into Monday. While Lawrenceville supports the right to protest, Still said those gatherings “must be peaceful and respectful.”  “We will not tolerate any destruction of property or any acts of violence,” the mayor’s message reads. “Therefore, the Lawrenceville Police Department will utilize all resources available to protect our city.” The bulk of protest activity on Saturday was in Atlanta, where widespread property damage was reported and more than 150 people were arrested. Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has extended the city’s nighttime curfew to run from 9 p.m. to sunrise on Monday.  READ | Georgia to deploy more National Guard troops ahead of new planned protests In Alpharetta, officers were on guard Saturday for the possibility that Avalon, the popular mixed-use shopping destination, would be the target of protest activity.  Alpharetta Department of Public Safety officials said Sunday on the agency’s Facebook page that officers worked with Avalon, the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office, Georgia Bureau of Investigation and other agencies to stave off any threats of violence.  Spokesperson Jim Cheatham said the department is still “monitoring the situation and are prepared to take steps as needed.”  “As of right now, we do not have any information as to something happening at a location in Alpharetta,” he said. “This could change at any moment and we are monitoring.” Avalon said Sunday that it didn’t experience any issues, and that the development continues to work with Alpharetta police to prepare for any protests that could make their way to the area. Woodstock Police Chief Calvin Moss said the police department has more officers working and the department is working closely with management at Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta in the event protesters show up at the mall.  About 30 people also demonstrated Saturday in downtown, and Moss said those were “peaceful and there were no issues.”