March 31, 2017 GMT

Ruling keeps Garner death records out of public eye

NEW YORK — A state appeals court has ruled that civilian complaints made to a police watchdog agency about the white officer involved in the chokehold death of unarmed Black man Eric Garner should not be made public.

An earlier court ruled that the Civilian Complaint Review Board records of Officer Daniel Pantaleo could be made public. It said the agency is not part of the New York Police Department and therefore not subject to a state law that restricts the publicizing of personnel records.

The Legal Aid Society had sought access to Pantaleo’s civilian complaints and whether he’d been subjected to any discipline.

An appeals court on Thursday reversed the ruling.

Album with Harriet Tubman photo sells for $161K

NEW YORK — An album containing a rare photograph of 19th century abolitionist and Underground Railroad hero Harriet Tubman has been sold at a New York City auction for $161,000.

Swann Galleries says the circa late 1860s image and other items in the album sold Thursday for a hammer price of $130,000, plus a $31,000 auctioneer fee. The album had an estimated sale price of $20,000 to $30,000. The Tubman photo shows her seated on a chair and was taken in Auburn in central New York in 1868 or 1869.

The winning bid was made by phone by Lion Heart Autographs, a Manhattan-based dealer.

— Compiled from The Associated Press

The Maryland-born Tubman led escaped slaves to freedom before and during the Civil War. She settled in Auburn after the war and is buried there.

Florida House votes to require autism training for police

TALLAHASSE, Fla. — The Florida House has passed a bill establishing autism awareness training for police officers across the state.

House members on Thursday unanimously voted in favor of the bill (HB 39). It develops ongoing training to help police officers recognize the behavior of autistic individuals, as well as to teach officers how to respond appropriately.

The push for legislation comes after a police shooting in North Miami last summer left an unarmed Black therapist shot and injured while protecting his severely autistic client. The autistic man had been the intended target in the shooting. Following the shooting, advocates for autistic people called for more training for officers.

A similar bill (SB 154) in the Senate has advanced to its last committee hearing.

Washington trial opens for 2 shot by officer in 2015

OLYMPIA, Wash. — A trial for two men accused of assaulting an Olympia police officer in an incident in which the men were shot has begun.

The Olympian reported attorneys gave opening statements Wednesday the trial of Bryson Chaplin and Andre Thompson.

The men are charged with assaulting officer Ryan Donald in May 2015 when he encountered them in responding to a call that two men carrying skateboards tried to steal beer from a grocery store.

Donald reported he was assaulted with a skateboard before the shooting and his attorneys on Wednesday say he shot Chaplin and Thompson in self-defense.

The half-brothers are black, and the officer is white.