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NY Prison Escapee Pleads Guilty:  One of the two convicted murderers who escaped from a maximum-security prison in upstate New York over the summer pleaded guilty Friday.  Lorenzo Ferrigno and Jason Hanna of CNN report that 35-year-old David Sweat, already serving a life sentence for a murder conviction, broke out of the Clinton Correctional Facility with his breakout partner Richard Matt, also a convicted murderer, on June 6 with the help of power tools provided by a prison staff member.  The two men were on the run for over three weeks, sparking an intensive manhunt that ended June 28.  Matt was shot and killed by law enforcement and Sweat was wounded and captured two days later.  The prison worker who assisted Sweat and Matt's escape, Joyce Mitchell, was sentenced to up to seven years in prison for first-degree felony promoting prison contraband and fourth-degree misdemeanor criminal facilitation for her role in the elaborate scheme.  Sweat's faces an additional 14 years on top of his life sentence, and he is scheduled to be sentenced February 3.

Third Expert Says Cop in Tamir Rice Case Justified:  In a report released Thursday by the Cuyahoga County prosecutor, a third expert found that the fatal shooting of 12-year-old black boy, Tamir Rice, by white Cleveland police officer Timothy Loehmann last year was "objectively reasonable."  Polly Mosendz of Newsweek reports that the latest report was conducted by W. Ken Katsaris, a certified Florida law enforcement officer, instructor and consultant with over three decades of experience, who reviewed the 911 call that prompted police response to the park where Rice was located, information provided by the dispatcher and the officers' actions upon arrival.  Following analysis of the 911 call, Katsaris found that the dispatcher should have provided Loehmann and his partner more information about the initial 911 call, such as the caller's statement that the person he saw holding a gun was "probably a juvenile" and that the gun was "probably fake."  After reviewing surveillance video of the incident, Katsaris determined that Loehmann had "only a split second" to make a decision when he saw Rice moving toward his waist band.  "It's simply obvious that the officers had reasonable belief that Rice was armed," he concluded.

Pregnant Wife of IN Pastor Murdered:  The suspect accused of murdering an Indianapolis pastor's pregnant wife during a home invasion earlier this week has been caught on several security cameras, and a picture is to be released by law enforcement to the public "in the near future."  Fox News reports that 28-year-old Amanda Blackburn was fatally shot in the head inside her home Tuesday morning during a home invasion robbery while her 15-month-old son slept in his crib upstairs.  Investigators believe that the suspect saw an opportunity while burglarizing another home to target the Blackburn home after spotting Pastor Davey Blackburn, Amanda's husband who has been ruled out as a suspect, leaving for the gym.  Indianapolis Police Chief Richard Hite says that the home invasion wasn't typical, noting that there was no forced entry into the home.  This leads his department to believe that there may be additional suspects.

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Tamir Rice--justified?

That seems a stretch--although anything can happen to a police officer at any time--and those of us on the law and order side know that--my view is that the report the cops got was 50-50 on whether this kid was even armed. Moreover, there is zero indication that he was acting violently or anything.

When it comes to known dangerous guys (or girls), I think cops are justified in taking as little risk as possible. When it comes to situations like this, some risk has to shift. I don't think the experts have that worldview.

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