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Chicago releases graphic video of police shooting 13-year-old

CHICAGO, April 15 (Reuters) - Chicago officials released to the public on Thursday a graphic body-camera video showing a police officer shooting and killing a 13-year-old boy while he appeared to be raising his hands in an alley more than two weeks ago.

The nine-minute video from Eric Stillman's body camera showed the 34-year-old officer getting out of his squad car and running after Adam Toledo in an alley at 2:30 a.m. on March 29 in Little Village, a Mexican neighborhood on the city's West Side.

The video then showed Stillman yelling "Stop" to Toledo before he caught up to him and ordered him to show his hands. Toledo appeared to raise his hands right before Stillman fired one shot and then ran to the boy as he fell to the ground.

"Shots fired, shots fired. Get an ambulance over here now," the police officer is heard saying in the video.

"Stay with me, stay with me" Stillman said. "Somebody bring the medical kit now!"

The Chicago Police Department said immediately following the incident that Toledo had a gun in his hand.

The release of the video was likely to rattle a nation already on edge over issues of policing, justice and race relations. Tensions were high on Thursday as a former suburban police officer in Minnesota appeared in court after she was charged in the killing last Sunday of a Black man during a traffic stop.

Hours earlier, the prosecution and defense rested their cases in the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who is charged in the death of George Floyd, which ignited a wave of protests last year.

Chicago's Civilian Office of Police Accountability also released some 33 data files, including other police body-camera videos, footage from nearby security cameras and documents related to the March 29 incident.

One of the documents identified Stillman, who has been on the force for six years, as the officer who shot and killed Toledo. He has been placed on administrative duty.

The Chicago Police Department also released part of the same video on its website on Thursday. The department placed an arrow on a still frame, pointing to what appeared to be a handgun in Toledo's right hand before Stillman opened fire.

"838 milliseconds between gun shown in hand and single shot," the police department said in a caption.

About five minutes and 30 seconds into the video, the officer shines a flashlight on a handgun feet from where officers worked frantically to save Toledo's life, giving him CPR.

Adam Toledo, 13, holds up his hands a split second before he was shot by police in Little Village, a neighborhood on the West Side of Chicago, Illinois, U.S. March 29, 2021 in a still image from police body camera video. Image taken March 29, 2021. Civilian Office of Police Accountability/Handout via REUTERS

'JUSTICE FOR ADAM'

Protesters critical of police gathered in central Chicago, some of them blocking traffic. They were met by helmeted officers on foot, social media images showed, but there were no immediate reports of conflict.

An attorney for the Toledo family, Adeena Weiss Ortiz, told a news conference after the release of the video that Toledo complied with Stillman's orders, dropped his weapon and turned around before the officer opened fire.

"I don't know if the officer had enough time or not. All I know is the officer is trained to not shoot an unarmed individual," she said.

Ortiz said the Toledo family wanted "justice for Adam, whatever that may entail. This is a very close, tight-knit Hispanic family. All of those who lived with him adored this child."

Officers were chasing Toledo and a 21-year-old man after they received notification of eight shots fired in the area, the department said. The other man was arrested.

"There were a number of forces that met up at 2:30 in the morning on March 29 in an alley, and, simply put, we failed Adam," Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot told a news conference before the video was released.

Several politicians at the state and national levels reacted swiftly to the video of the incident.

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker said in a statement that the moment called for justice for children and accountability in all public institutions.

John Catanzara, president of the Chicago police union known as the Fraternal Order of Police, told CNN the officer had only eight-tenths of a second to make the decision whether to shoot and his actions were justified.

"It is 100% justified. That officer's actions were actually heroic,” Catanzara said.

Chicago officials and the Toledo family urged people to remain calm as the city prepared for civil unrest following the release of the video. They said more police officers and city equipment would be in place to protect businesses during any unrest.

The shooting has renewed calls for police reforms in the third-largest U.S. city. Chicago police have been under intense scrutiny since 2014 when a white officer shot and killed a Black teenager. He was later convicted of second-degree murder.

Reporting by Brendan O'Brien in Chicago; Editing by Steve Orlofsky

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Sours: https://www.reuters.com/world/us/chicago-release-video-police-shooting-13-year-old-boy-2021-04-15/

bestgore.com

Canadian shock website

bestgore.com (stylized as BestGore.com and abbreviated BG[4]) was a Canadianshock site owned by Mark Marek,[5] which provided highly violent real-life news, photos and videos, with authored opinion and user comments. The site received media attention in 2012, following the hosting of a snuff film depicting the murder of Jun Lin. As a result, Marek was arrested and charged under Canada's obscenity law with corrupting public morals.

History[edit]

The site was launched on April 30, 2008, by Slovak-Canadian Mark Marek,[6] and hosted explicit, real-life, photographic and video material of events such as murders, suicides, torture, open surgeries, mutilations and accidents.

In a 2017 interview with GQ Australia, Mark Marek insisted that running BestGore.com costs more than it generates in revenue and said, "No company with a reasonable budget would want to advertise on a website that exposes police brutality, government abuse of citizens, war profiteering and similar anti-people activities. So all I'm left with is porn. Worse yet, porn earns less today than it did five years ago".[7]

As of November 15, 2020, the website is considered defunct as Marek, its founder and administrator, has decided to focus his attention on other interests. On November 17, 2020, when asked in the comment section on BestGore.com's lbry.tv site whether BestGore.com is down and if it will be indefinitely, Mark Marek replied, "Most likely permanently".[8]

Controversies and legal issues[edit]

Murder of Jun Lin[edit]

In June 2012, the website was criticized for the inclusion of the graphic video titled 1 Lunatic 1 Ice Pick, which depicts the rape and dismemberment of a corpse following the murder of Jun Lin committed by Luka Magnotta. Police said that Marek had initially refused requests to remove the video from the site, while Marek said, "I took it down myself, on my own terms, without being asked. Had any such request by police to take it down, as alleged, been made, I would have just told them that the video had been down for days."[9][10] Gil Zvulony, a Toronto-based lawyer specializing in Internet law, stated that the evidence supported the laying of obscenitycharges against BestGore.com, stating, "There's no real crime where there's no knowledge, but once they got notice of that and they allowed it to stay on there."[10]

Corruption of morals charge[edit]

In June 2012, it was reported that the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal was investigating Bestgore.com[11] for charges of obscenity due to the posting of 1 Lunatic 1 Ice Pick. The Toronto Sun claimed that charges were pending against Marek, which he denied.[12][13]

On July 16, 2013, Edmonton police charged Marek with one count of "corrupting morals" in connection with posting the Magnotta video. The rare charge is based on section 163 of the Canadian Criminal Code and carries a maximum sentence of two years' imprisonment. One police investigator described the site as "a racist website, inciting hate, hatred, violence—violence above and beyond anything normal."[14][15] Marek was released on bail, but was re-arrested on July 26 for allegedly violating the terms of his release.[16] In January 2016, he pleaded guilty and was given a conditional sentence of three months of house arrest followed by three months of community service.[17]

In a November 2013 interview with Adrianne Jeffries of The Verge, Marek said that section 163(1) prohibits distribution of crime comics and methods of curing venereal disease, and noted that the law was enforced selectively and could be used indiscriminately. Marek also defended the value of actually looking at gory material:[18]

You can take the publishing of the chainsaw beheading[19] by the Syrian rebels propaganda team who claimed that this atrocity was committed by people behind president Bashal al-Assad [sic]. The video stirred major outrage in the ranks of the sheeple, but it didn't fool anyone on Best Gore, because we know where the video is really from. It's been on Best Gore since before the Syrian fraudulent revolution started and we have its full version, including the original audio and know it's from Mexico.[20] It was the same when Best Gore busted the rebels about the publishing of the domestic gas leak explosion[21] which they also manipulated into looking like the aftermath of alleged indiscriminate bombings by the rulers. Or more recently, when the whole world was revving about Muslims being slaughtered by Buddhists in Burma (Myanmar)[22]—the propaganda fooled everyone, except us on Best Gore because we recognized the lynching video from Kenya,[23] the earthquake in Tibet and the tsunami disaster in Thailand which had been used in unrelated context.

Marek said that he had received testimonies from readers stating that viewing the images on his site had convinced them to avoid speeding, darting between traffic on motorcycle, horseplay with forklifts, even from committing suicide, and that the government itself recognized the utility of shocking images by requiring them on cigarette packaging.[18]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^"Dozen Years, Best Gore". Best Gore. 2020-04-30. Archived from the original on 2020-05-06. Retrieved 2020-04-30.
  2. ^"Six Years of Best Motherfucking Gore". BestGore.com. 2014-04-30. Archived from the original on 2014-05-02. Retrieved 2014-04-30.
  3. ^"Mark Marek confirms Bestgore.com shutdown". Retrieved November 17, 2020.
  4. ^"Dozen Years of Best Motherfucking Gore – Best Gore". Retrieved 2020-07-29.
  5. ^Bambury, Brent (June 1, 2012). "Interview with Mark Marek From Best Gore website"Archived 2012-06-06 at the Wayback Machine. CBC.ca.
  6. ^"Edmonton gore site owner charged in Magnotta video investigation released on bail". Global News. 18 July 2013. Archived from the original on 2014-10-31. Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  7. ^"Millar, Jake (May 12, 2017). Inside The World Of Gore: Why Gruesome Videos Draw A Crowd". Retrieved November 18, 2020.
  8. ^"Mark Marek confirms BestGore.com shutdown". Retrieved November 17, 2020.
  9. ^"Statement by Marek"Archived 2013-08-24 at the Wayback Machine August 20, 2013
  10. ^ abCohen, Tobi (June 5, 2012). "Leaving murder video online is a crime: lawyer". National Post. Archived from the original on 2012-06-06. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
  11. ^"Best Gore website investigated over Magnotta video"Archived 2012-06-08 at the Wayback Machine CBC.ca. June 5, 2012.
  12. ^Roth, Pamela (June 5, 2012). "Charges pending on Bestgore.com webmaster"Archived 2013-12-28 at the Wayback Machine. Toronto Sun.
  13. ^Graveland, Bill (June 5, 2012). "Gore site owner says he hasn't heard from police about dismemberment video"Archived 2013-04-24 at the Wayback Machine. The Canadian Press.
  14. ^Canadian Press (July 17, 2013). "Gore site owner charged for posting dismemberment video in Luka Magnotta case". The Globe and Mail. Toronto. Archived from the original on 2013-08-02. Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  15. ^"Police charge Edmonton gore site owner in Magnotta video investigation". Global News. July 17, 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-07-19. Retrieved July 18, 2013.
  16. ^Lazzarino, Dave (July 26, 2013). "Bestgore.com operator back in custody after allegedly breaking bail conditions". QMI Agency. Archived from the original on 2013-12-12. Retrieved 2013-12-10.
  17. ^Reith, Terry. "Mark Marek, who posted Magnotta murder video, pleads guilty to corrupting morals". CBC. Archived from the original on 2016-01-29. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
  18. ^ ab"Mark Marek Interviewed by Adrianne Jeffries from The Verge". Politicalprisoner.ca. November 26, 2013. Archived from the original on January 24, 2021. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  19. ^"Mexican Chainsaw Beheading Used in Anti Assad Propaganda". bestgore.com. Archived from the original on 2014-08-14. Retrieved 2014-08-13.
  20. ^"Chainsaw Beheading Video - Sinaloa Cartel Members Decapitated in Mexico - Best Gore". bestgore.com. Archived from the original on 2014-08-14. Retrieved 2014-08-13.
  21. ^"Man Dies in Domestic Gas Leak Explosion, Video Used for Propaganda". bestgore.com. Archived from the original on 2014-08-14. Retrieved 2014-08-13.
  22. ^"Ethnic Cleansing of Muslims by Buddhists in Burma". bestgore.com. Archived from the original on 2014-08-14. Retrieved 2014-08-13.
  23. ^http://www.politicalprisoner.ca/2013/11/interviews/mark-marek-interview-adrianne-jeffries-the-verge/Ethnic%20Cleansing%20of%20Muslims%20by%20Buddhists%20in%20Burma[dead link]

External links[edit]

Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bestgore.com
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Screenshot from police video of the shooting of Jason Harrison in Dallas on June 14, 2014. Harrison’s family obtained the footage in a civil rights lawsuit and chose to publicize it.

From Ferguson last summer to Baltimore this spring, police killings of unarmed black men under questionable circumstances have sparked outrage, civil unrest, and a heated national debate about policing in the United States. As Mother Jonesandothers have reported, there isn’t sufficient data available for determining how many people are shot to death or otherwise killed by police each year, or how the issue might be trending. But more such incidents appear to be getting captured on video than ever before, due in part to the ubiquity of cellphone cameras. The footage—not only from cellphones, but also surveillance cameras, dashboard cameras in police cars, and police-worn body cameras—has caused a tectonic shift in public awareness.

Below are 13 videos of fatal police encounters recorded between March 16, 2014, and April 4, 2015. Most of the suspects killed were black. A majority of the suspects were unarmed. In three cases, the suspects killed reportedly had serious mental-health problems—which may have been known to the police in at least two of those cases at the time of the shootings.

Mother Jones has contacted law enforcement officials about the status of these 13 cases: Investigations are ongoing in eight of them. In one case, now six months old, the two officers involved still haven’t been questioned by investigators. Officers in the five other cases have been absolved of wrongdoing via local or state proceedings. (One of those five cases is currently under review by the US Department of Justice.) Three of the 24 officers total who were involved in the 13 cases are currently facing criminal charges.

WARNING: The videos below contain graphic footage that some viewers may find disturbing.
 

Suspect killed: James Boyd
Race: White
When: March 16, 2014
Where: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Footage from: Police-worn body camera

What happened: James Boyd, a homeless man who reportedly suffered from mental illnesses for years, was shot by Albuquerque police officers Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez after a standoff over Boyd’s hillside encampment in March 2014. Randi McGinn, the special prosecutor appointed to take over the case in April 2015, told Mother Jones that she is likely to pursue homicide charges, originally brought by the district attorney, and will make a determination in the next few weeks.

 

Suspect killed: Richard Ramirez
Race: White/Hispanic
When: April 14, 2014
Where: Billings, Montana
Footage from: Police dashboard camera

What happened: Richard Ramirez was in the back of a car that was pulled over by officer Grant Morrison. Morrison later testified that, after he ordered the passengers to put up their hands, Ramirez repeatedly dropped his left hand. Morrison stated that he thought Ramirez—who’d been identified as a suspect in an armed robbery the prior night—was reaching for a gun, so he shot him three times. Ramirez was unarmed. (In February 2013, Morrison shot and killed another man while on duty, and was cleared of any wrongdoing.) In January 2015, a coroner’s jury ruled the action a justifiable homicide.

 

Suspect killed: Jason Harrison
Race: Black
When: June 14, 2014
Where: Dallas
Footage from: Police-worn body camera

What happened: Harrison’s mother called police saying that her son was off his medication and acting out, and requested help to get him to a hospital. When Dallas police officers John Rogers and Andrew Hutchins arrived at the front door, Harrison’s mother stepped out, letting the officers know that her son was bipolar and schizophrenic. When Harrison came to the door, the officers told him to drop a screwdriver he was holding, and shot him when he failed to comply. According to the Dallas Morning News, the officers’ attorney said that they feared for their lives, because killing someone using a screwdriver would be “pretty easy. It’ll only take one blow.” In April 2015, a grand jury decided not to indict the officers.

 

Suspect killed: Eric Garner
Race: Black
When: July 17, 2014
Where: Staten Island, New York
Footage from: Bystander’s cellphone

What happened: In July 2014, police approached Eric Garner on a Staten Island street after Garner had broken up a fight, and then started questioning him about selling loose cigarettes. NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo wrapped his arm around Garner’s neck from behind in a takedown maneuver and held Garner on the ground as Garner repeatedly said, “I can’t breathe.” Garner was later pronounced dead at the hospital. In December 2014, a grand jury decided not to indict Pantaleo.

 

Suspect killed: John Crawford III
Race: Black
Where: August 5, 2014
Where: Beavercreek, Ohio
Footage from: Walmart surveillance camera

What happened: Crawford, 22, was walking around in a Walmart holding a BB gun that had been for sale on the store’s shelves. Responding to a 911 call about a man waving a gun, Beavercreek officer Sean Williams and Sergeant David Darkow arrived at the Walmart. The officers later told investigators that Williams opened fire after Crawford failed to comply with their orders to drop the gun. A grand jury decided in September 2014 not to indict the officers. The US Department of Justice launched a review of the case last September, which is ongoing, a DOJ spokesperson confirmed to Mother Jones.

 

Suspect killed: Dillon Taylor
Race: White
When: August 11, 2014
Where: Salt Lake City
Footage from: Police-worn body camera

What happened: Dillon Taylor, his brother, and his cousin were outside a convenience store and allegedly matched the description from a 911 call about three men, including one brandishing a gun. Officer Bron Cruz confronted the trio and began following Taylor, who initially walked away with his back toward Cruz. Taylor then turned around and kept walking backward, and had both hands in his waistband, according to Cruz. Cruz said he thought Taylor had a gun, and he repeatedly yelled at Taylor to get his hands out, before firing two shots. Taylor was unarmed. In September 2014, the Salt Lake City District Attorney determined the shooting was justified.

 

Suspect killed: Kajieme Powell
Race: Black
When: August 19, 2014
Where: St. Louis
Footage from: Bystander’s cellphone

What happened: A bystander’s cellphone video shows Powell, 25, walking around outside a corner grocery store after allegedly stealing energy drinks and pastries. As he paced back and forth, a police car pulled onto the sidewalk just up the street and two police officers got out. Powell, who was brandishing a knife, began to approach the officers (whose names have not been released), telling them to shoot him. After a pause, he took another step toward the officers and they opened fire. St. Louis Metro police chief Sam Dotson later stated that Powell “came at the officers” while gripping the knife. In February, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department did not request charges when it handed off its investigation to the circuit attorney’s office, whose probe is ongoing, a spokesperson confirmed.

 

Suspect killed: Tamir Rice
Race: Black
When: November 22, 2014
Where: Cleveland
Footage from: Surveillance camera

What happened: Rice, 12, was playing in a local park when someone called 911 and reported that a person, “probably a juvenile,” was waving a gun around that was “probably fake.” Police officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback pulled up to Rice in their patrol car and Loehmann got out and shot Rice almost instantly. No charges have been filed in the case. As Mother Jones first reported last week, the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department, which took control of the case in January, has yet to interview the two officers in its ongoing investigation.

 

Suspect killed: Jerame Reid
Race: Black
When: December 30, 2014
Where: Bridgeton, New Jersey
Footage from: Dashboard camera

What happened: Reid was a passenger in a car that was pulled over for allegedly running a stop sign. Officers Braheme Days and Roger Worley approached the car, and despite verbal warnings from the officers, Reid opened his door and reportedly got out of the car with his hands up, after saying “I ain’t doing nothing. I’m not reaching for nothing, bro,” according to the Associated Press. Both Days and Worley shot him. The officers were placed on paid administrative leave pending the investigation, and Reid’s family has filed a civil rights lawsuit in federal court against the city of Bridgeton. (Days is also facing a separate lawsuit for alleged rape.)

 

Suspect killed: Antonio Zambrano-Montes
Race: Hispanic
When: February 10, 2015
Where: Pasco, Washington
Footage from: Bystander’s cellphone

What happened: After responding to a call of a man throwing rocks in a grocery store parking lot, three Pasco police officers tried to arrest Zambrano. They pursued him on foot, shooting at him as he ran, and they fired at close range as he turned around to face them. In the video, his hands appear to have been empty. Officers Ryan Flanagan, Adam Wright, and Adrian Alaniz were placed on paid leave, and an investigation is ongoing.

 

Suspect killed: Charly Keunang
Race: Black
When: March 1, 2015
Where: Los Angeles
Footage from: Bystander’s cellphone

What happened: Six police officers were responding to a 911 call about an alleged robbery and assault on LA’s Skid Row, in which Keunang was reportedly a suspect. During a struggle with police, Keunang, who reportedly suffered from mental health problems,allegedly reached for an officer’s gun, prompting several officers to open fire. The three officers who fired their guns—Sergeant Chand Syed, and Officers Francisco Martinez and Daniel Torres—have been reassigned to administrative duty and an internal police department investigation is ongoing, the LAPD confirmed to Mother Jones. Keunang’s family has filed a $20 million civil claim against the city.

 

Suspect killed: Phillip White
Race: Black
When: March 31, 2015
Where: Vineland, New Jersey
Footage from: Bystander’s cellphone

What happened: Responding to a call of a man acting erratically, police handcuffed and restrained the 32-year-old White. According to investigators, White became unresponsive and received CPR in an ambulance on the way to the hospital, where he eventually died. Police called it an “in-custody non-shooting death,” but witnesses on the scene said the officers beat White and that a police dog bit him in the face. An investigation by the Cumberland County prosecutor’s office is ongoing. The officers in the case, Louis Platania and Rich Janasiak, are both on administrative leave, according to news reports.

 

Suspect killed: Walter Scott
Race: Black
When: April 4, 2015
Where: North Charleston, South Carolina
Footage from: Police dashboard camera and bystander’s cellphone

What happened: Dashboard camera footage showed Scott running away from his vehicle after North Charleston police officer Michael Slager pulled Scott over for a broken brake light. In the following minutes, recorded on a bystander’s cellphone, Slager caught up to Scott in an open field, and after a short struggle, Scott, who was unarmed, broke free and began to run away. Slager then shot Scott multiple times from behind. Slager was fired from his job and faces a felony murder charge.

 

Sours: https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/05/police-shootings-caught-on-tape-video/
Body-Cam Video Of Daniel Shaver Shooting - Los Angeles Times

Best Gore website investigated over Magnotta video

Montreal police are investigating the owner of the Best Gore website, which hosted a video of Luka Rocco Magnotta allegedly stabbing and dismembering Jun Lin, a 33-year-old Chinese national.

Police told CBC News there is a good possibility charges will be laid.

Asked about the video at a press conference Tuesday morning, Montreal police confirmed they are working with Edmonton police but declined at first to comment on possible charges.

But Commander Ian Lafreniere later told CBC News the charge could be publishing obscene material.

"We do have a video that was posted on the web. For us, we believe it's the right one, but now we have to prove it, so [there are] some legal issues also about this," Lafrenière told the press conference.

The site is owned by Edmonton-based Mark Marek, who has defended his website's role in the unfolding drama and says it provided a public service.

"[B]ecause the video was posted in the first place ... the Best Gore community was able to identify the perpetrator four days before the discovery of the torso in Montreal and the foot in Ottawa," Marek said in an email exchange with CBC News last week, before Magnotta's arrest. "Had the police not ignored the reports made at the time, they would have likely caught the perpetrator red-handed, while still in the apartment."

"Due to a mishap outside of Best Gore's control, the report was dismissed as not credible and [the] perpetrator not checked up on, allowing him to carry through with his deed of mailing the body parts off and disappearing without a trace," Marek said. "If not dismissed by the police, [it] would have likely taken the perp off the street."

Roger Renville, a Montana-based civil litigation lawyer, told CBC News last week he had come across the 10½-minute video on the website on May 26 and reported it to Toronto police the next day along with other law enforcement agencies in Canada and the U.S., but says his concerns were dismissed.

Marek defends website

Toronto police say the only record of a caller they have came late Sunday night, and that caller did not provide a web address. Police say they directed the caller to Crime Stoppers.

Marek said the video came to him from a contributor on May 25 and was posted the same day, and said that he and most of his site's members felt the video was real.

When asked about possible charges, Marek told CBC News in an email on Tuesday that he stands by his website's role in educating the public about the dangerous side of human nature.

In a message posted Tuesday on Best Gore, Marek described himself as a whistleblower and said the website helps to "expose evil-doers for who they really are."

"People deserve to know what’s really out there," he wrote.

Criminal lawyer David Butt told CBC News that "simply serving a market that's out there" would not amount to a legal defence.

Butt said the courts look at "a combination of sex and violence that exceeds community standards of tolerance," in determining if something is obscene, and that a person's motivation for publishing that material would not be a factor.

Gil Zvulony, a Toronto internet lawyer, told CBC News the laws against obscenity should apply in this case and should trump any questions of free speech.  

"I haven't seen the video, but based on the descriptions, it contains sex, violence, murder in the most despicable manner," Zvuloney said. "I don't think there's really any question that this is the kind of video we as a society do not want out there."  

He also questioned why police in Edmonton didn't shut down the site as soon as it came to their attention.  

"With the internet, if the fire isn't put out immediately, the genie is out of the bottle," he said.

Any law changes need 'balance'

Obscenity laws have traditionally only been used only in cases of explicit sexual material, not representations of death or murder. The case has opened a new debate about whether the current law is sufficient or should be changed, said David Fraser, an internet and privacy lawyer at McInnes Cooper in Halifax.   

 "Certainly there are provisions that are archaic, and maybe obscenity is not the right kind of language to be using in this context," he said.  

Fraser noted that any changes to the law must find a balance.  

"But there are two things that worry me," he said. "One is that we would need to make sure we are getting the balance right because we don't want to inadvertently capture legitimate newsgathering and news reporting and legitimate expression that needs to be out there to provide information.

"And the second part is that I'm concerned when you have important discussions like this take place in a heated and emotional environment that you often don't get it right."

Magnotta, 29, is suspected of killing Lin, a university student in Montreal, and mailing his body parts to Canadian political parties.

Magnotta is in a Berlin jail following his arrest at an internet cafe there Monday. Berlin police said Tuesday Magnotta won't fight extradition to Canada to face charges including first-degree murder.

Sours: https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/best-gore-website-investigated-over-magnotta-video-1.1134435

Gore shootings best

Video site LiveLeak, best known for hosting gruesome footage that mainstream rivals wouldn’t touch, has shut down after fifteen years in operation. In its place is “ItemFix,” a site that bans users from uploading media containing “excessive violence or gory content.”

In a blog post, LiveLeak founder Hayden Hewitt did not give an explicit reason for the site’s closure, saying only that: “The world has changed a lot over these last few years, the Internet alongside it, and we as people.” In a video posted on his YouTube channel Trigger Warning, Hewitt offered no further details, but said that maintaining LiveLeak had become a struggle, and that he and his team “just didn’t have it in us to carry on fighting.”

“Everything’s different now, everything moves on,” says Hewitt, before adding in an aside to the camera: “I don’t fucking like it. I liked it much better when it was the Wild West.”

LiveLeak has been a mainstay of internet culture for many years, its name synonymous with footage of murder, terrorism, and everyday incidents of crime and violence. A sinister doppelgänger to sites like YouTube, LiveLeak was founded in 2006 and grew out of a culture of early internet “shock sites” like Ogrish, Rotten.com, and BestGore: websites that hosted violent and pornographic content with the express aim of disgusting visitors.

LiveLeak, with its tagline of “Redefining the Media,” ostensibly added some nuance to this brutish appeal. Official statements from those involved sometimes defended its content in terms of newsworthiness or truth-telling. When the site attracted controversy in the UK for hosting footage of children fighting, for example, Hewitt defended sharing the videos as a form of bearing witness.We have to take a stance of saying ‘look all this is happening, this is real life, this is going on, we’re going to show it,’” he told BBC News.

Despite this, the site often changed its policies concerning controversial footage. In 2014 it attracted significant attention (and traffic) for hosting a video of the beheading of US journalist James Foley by terror group ISIS. But soon after the site’s owners announced it would host no future beheading videos created by ISIS.

“We’ve shown the world the true horror of this form of execution more than once in the past and we cannot find any compelling reason to even be thought of as promoting the actions of this group,” said a blog post. “We know they [ISIS] do not find support here on LL and that condemnation is virtually universal but there is no reason at all to show more.”

Similarly, the site chose not to host videos of the 2019 Christchurch shootings, stating in another blog post that LiveLeak never had a “show everything” policy, and that hosting the video would only give the shooter what he wanted: more attention.

Although the site’s content likely stopped it from reaching the prominence of other video hosts, it still attracted sizable numbers of viewers. A 2019 report from The New York Times noted that web tracking firm Alexa ranked it as the 695th most popular website in the world, putting it roughly on a par with mainstream sites like The Onion and Jezebel.

The same report cites an academic study by Sue Tait that attempts to explain the enduring popularity of such violent and gory content. Based on her observations of the Ogrish forums, Tait categorized four different “spectatorial positions.” There is the “amoral gaze,” where the content is stimulating and pleasurable; the “vulnerable gaze” where the imagery is experienced as harmful; the “entitled gaze,” where viewers justify their actions as seeing past the “censorship” of mainstream outlets; and the “responsive gaze,” where looking is framed as a way for the viewer to prepare for coming hardships, like a career in the military.

The range of justifications identified by Tait and other academics suggest that demand for such extreme content will always exist, even if individual sites like LiveLeak come and go.

In his farewell blog post, the site’s founder Hayden Hewitt emphasized the importance of the site’s community. “To the members, the uploaders, the casual visitors, the trolls and the occasionally demented people who have been with us. You have been our constant companions and although we probably didn’t get to communicate too often you’re appreciated more than you realize,” he writes. “On a personal level you have fascinated and amused me with your content. Lastly, to those no longer with us. I still remember you.”

Sours: https://www.theverge.com/2021/5/7/22424356/liveleak-shock-site-shuts-down-itemfix
Bodycam footage of fatal police shooting in Ogden (Warning: Graphic

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