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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Baltimore delegates are weighing in on a bill that would create a pilot program for police behavioral health units.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Shirley Nathan-Pulliam, is on the delegation's Friday's agenda.  It was approved by the Senate 46-0 and is scheduled for a hearing before a House committee next week.

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The Millsboro Police Department will get getting three new body cameras for a cost of nearly $27-hundred.

The Town Council approved the acquisition this week after the department said that two older types had problems with durability and storage.

Captain Brian Calloway noted that the events in Ferguson, Missouri where an African American teenager was killed by a police officer in a controversial shooting made the devices more important than ever to capture what happens during an incident.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Advocates for police reform are urging the approval of a legislative package that would broaden the scope of law enforcement accountability.

The Maryland Coalition for Justice and Equality is hosting a news conference Thursday morning in Annapolis for support of three bills that address investigations into police misconduct and propose guidelines for the use of officer body cameras.

One measure would authorize the state prosecutor to investigate the deaths of anyone who died either through the actions or omissions of a police officer.

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NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - New Castle County police are seeking the public's help in investigations of three fatal shootings, including one at a local community center earlier this week.

County executive Tom Gordon and Attorney General Matt Denn planned to join police officials at a news conference Friday to discuss the shootings.

Police have not yet identified a suspect in Monday's shooting of 30-year-old Jamar Kilgoe inside a basement recording studio at the Rose Hill Community Center.

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MILLSBORO, Del. (AP) - Delaware State Police are investigating the death of a 10-month-old baby boy at a Millsboro daycare.

Police say they got a 911 call about the baby on Wednesday afternoon. Police say a daycare worker reported finding the baby unresponsive when trying to wake him from a nap. The baby was pronounced dead at a hospital soon after.

The Delaware Division of Forensic Science is working to determine how the baby died.

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Governor Jack Markell delivered his seventh State of the State address yesterday hailing the economic progress in the First State.

But he called on lawmakers to help him close a $780 million spending gap in meeting the state’s transportation needs.

In addition, he focused on issues ranging from ways to improve education and to end veteran homelessness to dealing with substance abuse.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the address was well received by lawmakers.

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Salisbury police officers could soon be wearing body cameras.

That was the message at last night's Mayor's Neighborhood Roundtable which drew dozens of local residents.

Police Chief Barbara Duncan noted that the Police Department in Rialto, California saw a dramatic reduction in the number of complaints filed against officers wearing body camera in the year after they were instituted.

In addition, she said that they saw a 60 percent reduction in the use of force.

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SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - A Delaware man sentenced to 106 years in prison for shooting into a police officer's home as two children slept has been found incompetent to stand trial in similar shootings in Maryland.
 
David Watson of Laurel faces 60 charges in three shootings at the homes of police officers in Wicomico County.
 
The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the 26-year-old was found incompetent to stand trial in December. A review hearing has been set in his case in Wicomico County Circuit Court for June 12.
 

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn says the state's Justice Department is being restructured to create a new office for civil rights and public trust.
 
Denn announced the move Wednesday, saying the new office will protect the rights of Delaware residents, enforce laws designed to hold government accountable, and conduct investigations in which the Justice Department's other responsibilities "might present the appearance of a conflict of interest." An example of that is police use-of-force investigations.
 

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Dewey Beach says it may give up its right to 3-thousand square feet of space in the Lighthouse Cove project.

Under a proposed amendment to the agreement with the developers the city would give it up in exchange for $360-thousand.

It was supposed to have been used for office space.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that Town Manager Marc Appelbaum says the town wants to keep its police and town hall in the same building.   

The money would have to be paid in full by the end of June in 2017 or by the expiration of the building permit whichever comes first.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware authorities say two policemen are on paid leave after they fatally shot a man who pointed a pellet gun at them.

Dover Police say before the officers arrived at the apartment of 52-year-old James Long he called a crisis center line and said he planned to commit "suicide by cop." Police say Sunday's call is not the first time Long had made similar threats.

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The deaths of two African Americans at the hands of police in Ferguson, Missouri and New York have sparked protests across the nation. Delmarva Public Radio's George Merrill ponders how we as a nation may bridge that divide.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware authorities are eyeing the use of body cameras by police but say questions about privacy, data storage standards, cost and other issues have to be addressed.

Body cameras were a side topic of discussion Tuesday following a meeting of the State Aid to Local Law Enforcement Committee in Dover. The committee doles out money from the state grant-in-aid budget in response to requests from local police agencies.

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SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - Three men protesting the deaths of unarmed black men at the hands of white police officers in New York City and Ferguson, Missouri were arrested on Maryland's Eastern shore just as an annual Christmas parade was about to start.

About 50 protesters marched from a middle school to the parade route in Salisbury on Sunday. Some of the protesters then linked arms and blocked the parade route.

After ignoring police orders to move to the sidewalk, officers wrestled two men to the ground and handcuffed them. A third was handcuffed nearby.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - It wasn't exactly a warm welcome, this sharp-edged statement from a spirited 13-year-old girl.

"I don't like po po," Jekerah Haymes said, using the same street term for police that actor Tyler Perry's Madea character uses in the film "Diary of a Mad Black Woman."

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The arrest of a 15 year old by a Salisbury Police Officer Justin Aita has been declared unlawful.  

That’s the conclusion of a Circuit Court judge who dropped 5 of the 8 charges against the teen.

The boy was taken into custody back in August when the officer stopped the teen for riding his bicycle without a head-light.

The boy eventually pulled away after allegedly giving a false name where upon chase ensued.

The police report says that the boy’s aunt approached the scene resulting in the boy and aunt fighting with the officer.

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WESTMINSTER, Md. (AP) - Carroll County law enforcement and public-health officials are initiating a crisis intervention team to safely manage people with mental illness.

The event Friday in Westminster adds Carroll County to at least five other Maryland jurisdictions that have embraced the concept.

Team members include law-enforcement officers who have been trained to compassionately manage people who are suffering from a mental illness or experiencing a mental health crisis.

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Most of the overtime for resort towns along the Delmarva coastline goes to public works, wastewater and the police.

Wilmington News Journal reports that the expenditures can get as high as $13-thousand or the equivalent of an extra day of work.

But city officials say providing overtime is easier and more efficient than hiring an extra person part-time.

Sharon Lynn, city manager of Rehoboth Beach, told the Delmarva Media Group that it means a quicker response and a quicker process than hiring someone.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Anne Arundel County's police chief has announced that he will resign Dec. 1 after less than two years on the job.

In a statement Tuesday, police Chief Kevin Davis says he's resigning after the newly elected county executive, Steve Schuh, told him that he'd be "heading in a different direction."

Davis' lengthy statement mentioned the how the county struggled in recent years "when political misdeeds contaminated its waters" and says his administration was focused on positive changes for the future.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A new study says some law enforcement agencies in Virginia don't have written interrogation policies.

A survey of more than 100 agencies found that nearly a third lack written policies. Recording of interrogations is required by only a handful of agencies.

The study's author, University of Virginia School of Law professor Brandon L. Garrett, tells the Richmond Times-Dispatch that properly conducted and recorded police interrogations can help prevent false confessions.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Police officers were the highest-paid city workers in Wilmington last year.

The News Journal of Wilmington reports that the 14 highest-paid workers in 2013 were police officers, including two retired officers who left the force during the year for other jobs.

The 14 officers' earnings include overtime pay, which boosted their salaries to above $100,000 per year. Seventy-one percent of the city's total overtime was paid to police officers in 2013, totaling roughly $2.9 million.

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The relations between the community and police in Salisbury took center stage at a forum held by the Wicomico County branch of the NAACP last night.

The gathering at the Chipman Cultural Center featured Charles Phillips a conciliation specialist for the Community Relations Service of the U.S. Justice Department.

During the two horu meeting, there were a number of residents who expressed interest in an oversight board for the police.

Local resident April Jackson said that while she has not been afraid of the police in the past, she is beginning to now.

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CHESAPEAKE, Va. (AP) - Chesapeake has seen a decline in complaints against police since it expanded the use of body cameras.

Citing police statistics, The Virginian-Pilot reports that there were 51 complaints in 2013, compared to 81 complaints in 2012. The number of complaints upheld declined from 24 in 2012 to 19 in 2013.

Two categories of complaints increased during the period. Racial-profiling complaints rose from five to 11, and procedural complaints increased from three to 14.

 

During tonight’s City Council meeting, a number of departments will be asking for money.

              The Salisbury Police Department is requesting appropriation of $21,000 to pay for emergency repairs to a police tower on Marine Road that was damaged by a lightning strike on Aug. 2, as well as budget amendment to transfer $1,400 earned through their ammunition recycling program from the General Fund into the Fire Department budget.