Judge dismisses Detroit’s controversial countersuit against anti-police brutality protesters

click to enlarge Steve NeavlingDetroit Will Breathe protesters took to the streets to demonstrate against police brutality over the summer. The city of Detroit lost another legal battle with protesters of police brutality and racial injustice.A federal judge dismissed the city’s controversial countersuit against Detroit Will Breathe protesters on Wednesday, saying it failed to show that demonstrators conspired to commit acts of violence and vandalism over the summer.“The City does not plead any specific allegations of any specific plaintiff conspiring with another to commit an unlawful act,” U.S. District Judge Laurie J. Michelson wrote in the decision. “The City focuses on allegedly unlawful actions that occurred at the protests without alleging that any specific plaintiffs agreed to commit those acts.”The city filed the countersuit in response to Detroit Will Breathe's lawsuit in August that alleged police used unnecessary, excessive force to break up peaceful demonstrations against police brutality.Critics of the countersuit said it amounted to a tax-subsidized assault on free speech.“It was frivolous,” Jack Schulz, an attorney for the National Lawyers Guild, which filed the lawsuit, tells. “To me, it was continued retaliation for standing up for their rights.”Detroit’s top attorney Lawrence Garcia tells, “We are disappointed in the ruling, but we accept it.”The decision to dismiss the countersuit comes about two weeks after a 36th District Court judge tossed out charges against eight protesters for their roles in the summer demonstrations.On Jan. 14, another 36th District Judge dismissed charges against 28 protesters , saying police failed to provide information such as the identities of arresting officers and body cam footage that could be used during a trial.About two weeks later, the city dropped charges against 238 protesters

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Kevin Saunderson and Idris Elba debut new video with Detroit Will Breathe activists center stage

click to enlarge Screen grab/YouTubeStill from 'We All Move Together.' The group marched for more than 100 days following his death demanding racial justice, police reform, and transparency.“You could be anywhere in the globe tonight, we salute your soul because you chose light,” Elba chants.Saunderson's Inner City teamed up with Elba for the track and Detroit's Eightfold Collective for the accompanying black and white video,reports. “Our platforms can shine global light on the amazing work they do, and it takes the message of the track to an even higher place.”The end of the video is dedicated to detailing the accomplishments of Detroit Will Breathe, despite the fervent opposition of DPD Police Chief James Craig, who, last month admitted to treating Detroit Will Breathe activists differently than those supporters of President Donald Trump who stormed Detroit's presidential ballot counting center last month. Chief Craig claims those protesters acted peacefully, while DWB did not.“Since forming, they have overturned the arbitrary, unjust, and racist 8 p.m. curfew imposed to squash protester rights,” the video for “We All Move Together” reads. “Brought scrutiny to the DPD, including a federal restraining order barring them from brutalizing protestors,” as well as “exposed an attempt to cover up police misconduct related to the death of a Black woman in police custody.”Watch the video for “We Move Together” below

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