The city of Charlotte, North Carolina, is pulling back its financial support of the officer who fatally shot unarmed Jonathan Ferrell back in 2013.

WSOC-TV recently reported that the city has stopped paying the civil defense legal fees for officer Randall “Wes” Kerrick, who has been charged with voluntary manslaughter following the fatal shooting of the 24-year-old former Florida A&M football star.

The city has already paid more than $20,000 in legal fees for the officer as he battles a wrongful death lawsuit filed by Ferrell’s family, but it was recently announced that he won’t be receiving another penny from the city.

City Manager Ron Carleen explained that it just wasn’t right to continue to financially support the officer after he had been charged with a crime.

“I have decided that it would be inconsistent and untenable for the city to defend Officer Kerrick in the civil lawsuit due to the fact that CMPD charged Officer Kerrick with a crime.”

“I can tell you this is what I saw,” Ferrell’s family’s attorney, Chris Chestnut, said as he recalled the police dashboard camera footage. “Absolutely, unequivocally, there were no words said, period, from any of the officers prior to Jonathan being hit with a stun gun.”

Chestnut said officers could be heard telling Ferrell to get on the ground, but it was so close to the time that the bullets were fired that it was difficult to tell which came first – the order or the shots.

“But I can tell you that those shots were in such close proximity that Jonathan never had an opportunity to reply,” he said. “He had bullets in him before he could ever hit the ground.



Actual PSA from the Office of Civil Defense (1965) advising farmers on how to take action in the event of a nuclear catastrophe…using marionettes.

  • “4 Wheels to Survival: Your Car and Civil Defense.” United States Printing Office, 1955.
  • “Six Steps to Survival.” United States Printing Office, 1955.
  • “Safe because some American looked to the SKY!” Ground Observer Corps, U.S. Air Force, 1953.

Here’s the thing about civil defense during the early Cold War: The federal government didn’t necessarily believe that duck-and-cover or fallout shelters would actually save lives in the event of nuclear war. Rather, the promotion of civil defense measures was connected to the belief that the government needed to bring home to the public that the Cold War was a REAL war, like WWII was a real war. During WWII, things like war bonds and victory gardens were used to create a feeling of common investment in victory, and civil defense aimed at recapturing that spirit of popular participation. Thus, the Eisenhower administration encouraged the formation of civil defense volunteer groups and the like, but spent practically no money on, say, building bomb shelters. Eisenhower himself was convinced that nuclear war would mean annihilation of both sides, and placed his hopes on deterrence through a policy of massive retaliation.

For more:
Guy Oakes, The Imaginary War: Civil Defense and American Cold War Culture (Oxford University Press, 1994)
Andrew D. Grossman, Neither Dead nor Red: Civil Defense and American Political Development during the Early Cold War (Routledge, 2001)
Kenneth D. Rose, One Nation Underground: The Fallout Shelter in American Culture (New York University Press, 2001)


Aftermath of Hurricane Diane, August 20, 1955

Hurricane Diane struck the Atlantic coast from August 17 through August 19, 1955. Coming only days after Hurricane Connie, the storm resulted in extensive flooding as rivers overflowed and dams collapsed, and caused over 180 deaths and widespread damage across the Mid-Atlantic states and New England.  

  1. Flooding in Easton, Pennsylvania during Hurricane Diane, 8/20/1955.
    Series: Civil Defense Photographs, 1951 - 1961Record Group 304: Records of the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization, 1947 - 1962  
  2. Road Destruction, Holyoke, Mass. 8/20/55; 6-7 Jackson St. Washout.
    Series: Historical Photographs of Flood Events, 1927 - 1984Record Group 77: Records of the Office of the Chief of Engineers, 1789 - 1999  
  3. Flooding at Warren Street in Trenton, New Jersey during Hurricane Diane, 8/20/1955. 
    Series: Civil Defense Photographs, 1951 - 1961Record Group 304: Records of the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization, 1947 - 1962
  4. Flooding at Main Street in Winsted, Connecticut during Hurricane Diane, 1955.
    Series: Civil Defense Photographs, 1951 - 1961Record Group 304: Records of the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization, 1947 - 1962

More photos from Hurricane Diane and the Flood of 1955 in the National Archives Catalog

A New York City police officer, Brian Moore, 25, who was shot in the head over the weekend as he tried to question a local man sought on gun charges, died on Monday of his wounds.

Moore and his partner had been trying to question Demetrius Blackwell, 35, who has an extensive criminal background, including attempted murder, after they saw him adjust an object in his waistband. Blackwell pulled out a gun and fired several times into the vehicle.

It’s important to remember for every Freddie Gray incident there are plenty of officer Brian Moore incidents, where cops get attacked by people like this. But those lives don’t matter to Tumblr because they don’t fit into its ideological narrative.

People think police killings is the civil rights issue of our era. It is not. It only affects a small number of people, and they are often criminals who attack police officers and are killed in self defense. The real civil rights issue is the violence perpetrated by young men like Demetrius Blackwell, which ends orders of magnitude more lives of all races than any police brutality does. But Tumblr is uncomfortable with that reality so it focuses on a handful of cops instead.

DJ David Newsroom Breaking News: 7.2. Earthquake Strikes Off Coast Of El Salvador And Nicaragua Tsunami Alert Issued

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake has occurred off El Salvador’s Pacific coast.

The country’s civil defense office said there are no immediate reports of damages or injuries from the quake that hit at 12:43 p.m. (1843 GMT).

The U.S. Geological Survey says the epicenter was about 95 miles south-southwest of the port of El Triunfo, El Salvador.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued a tsunami threat message, saying tsunami waves are possible within 300 km of the epicenter along the coast of Nicaragua, El Salvador and the Honduras.

Story developing  ….


Civil Defense Window Display at Sage Allen Department Store in Hartford, Connecticut, 1956

From the series: Civil Defense Photographs, 1951 - 1961, from the Records of the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization, 1947 - 1962

This photograph depicts a Civil Defense window display at the Sage Allen Department Store in Hartford, Connecticut, which was put in by the Connecticut State Office of Civil Defense from January 16 through January 23, 1956.

A interesting complement to our post yesterday of nuns stocking their school fallout shelter.

via the National Archives at Kansas City on Twitter:

“Every Family Should have a Shelter Area” See a window display from the Civil Defense Admin. #TDiH 1956 #emergency

— Kansas City Archives (@KCArchives)

January 23, 2014