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Woman who murdered her husband swears an engagement ring and Viagra will prove her innocence 

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woman who murdered her husband swears an engagement ring and viagra will prove her innocence

A woman who murdered her de-facto husband with poison for his $300,000 estate claims an engagement ring and Viagra prescription are key to proving her innocence. 

Wendie-Sue Dent, 61, has launched an appeal against her conviction for the murder of her partner Lawrence in December 2015.  

She had denied the charge at her trial but was found guilty.

Defence counsel Marie Shaw QC told the Court of Criminal Appeal on Thursday that Dent’s conviction flew in the face of a considerable body of evidence of the loving relationship the couple had shared before Mr Lawrence’s death.

Wendie-Sue Dent (left), 61, has launched an appeal against her conviction for the murder of her de facto husband David Lawrence (right) in December 2015

Wendie-Sue Dent (left), 61, has launched an appeal against her conviction for the murder of her de facto husband David Lawrence (right) in December 2015

Wendie-Sue Dent (left), 61, has launched an appeal against her conviction for the murder of her de facto husband David Lawrence (right) in December 2015 

She said there was evidence the pair were ‘besotted’ with each other, had become engaged and planned to marry and that he had made arrangements for her to be taken care of after his death. 

‘Immediately proximate to his death they had, as a couple, gone to a doctor to seek assistance (and) Viagra was prescribed… he purchased an engagement ring for her,’ Ms Shaw said, according to The Advertiser

‘They’re living together, they’re travelling together and they plan, essentially, to be happy together for the rest of their lives.

‘That was the common thread throughout the evidence, that the deceased was happy with her and that they were living and behaving as if their lives would be together.’

The court was also told suggestions that a ‘powder keg’ had been created by the fact Mr Lawrence had twigged to Dent being a fraud, based on lies she had told about her past, and that he was planning to end the relationship was just speculation. 

Ms Shaw also said the Crown had also not properly discounted the possibility that Mr Lawrence’s death was an accident.

Dent's defence counsel argued that she and the victim were in love, citing an engagement ring and Viagra prescription as proof

Dent's defence counsel argued that she and the victim were in love, citing an engagement ring and Viagra prescription as proof

Dent’s defence counsel argued that she and the victim were in love, citing an engagement ring and Viagra prescription as proof 

At her trial, the prosecution said Dent, who lived at Dapto in NSW’s Illawarra region before her arrest, administered Mr Lawrence a mixture of dangerous medications that had all been prescribed to her.

A post-mortem examination revealed the toxic levels of morphine alone were enough to kill the 62-year-old.

In sentencing submissions last month, the dead man’s family said he was helpful and kind to everyone but paid for that with his life.

‘It takes no effort for us to hate you. We will never forgive you, never. You do not deserve that,’ they told Dent in a victim impact statement read to the court.

In those same submissions, defence counsel Martin Anders asked the court to consider Dent’s medical history when setting a non-parole period, describing her as someone with a profound opioid addiction who had operated in a “drug-induced fog’.

But prosecutor Emily Telfer said there was no evidence of Dent being in a fog or removed from reality.

The appeal court hearing was continuing. Dent is due to be sentenced next week.

Dent had denied murdering Mr Lawrence to claim his $300,000 estate, but was found guilty by a jury in April

Dent had denied murdering Mr Lawrence to claim his $300,000 estate, but was found guilty by a jury in April

Dent had denied murdering Mr Lawrence to claim his $300,000 estate, but was found guilty by a jury in April

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Premier Dan Andrews fronts hotel quarantine inquiry

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premier dan andrews fronts hotel quarantine inquiry

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has sworn on the bible and told an inquiry into the disastrous COVID-19 hotel quarantine fiasco that he too does not know who made the decision to employ private security guards. 

His appearance will conclude the airing of weeks of evidence by a series of bumbling bureaucrats and ministers who have all failed to reveal who made the critical decision to employ private security guards to police returned travellers in March.  

‘I do not know who made that decision,’ he stated.

Mr Andrews will be the last to appear before the inquiry, which has turned into a complete farce. 

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has sworn on the bible to tell an inquiry that he has no idea who decided to use private security to guard returned travellers

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has sworn on the bible to tell an inquiry that he has no idea who decided to use private security to guard returned travellers

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has sworn on the bible to tell an inquiry that he has no idea who decided to use private security to guard returned travellers 

Police minister Lisa Neville said she had not been consulted about the plan to use private security at Melbourne hotels

Police minister Lisa Neville said she had not been consulted about the plan to use private security at Melbourne hotels

Police minister Lisa Neville said she had not been consulted about the plan to use private security at Melbourne hotels 

Quarantine breaches involving private security guards seeded 99 per cent of Victoria’s deadly second wave of COVID infections, which in turn has led to more than 700 deaths of the elderly. 

The bungle is estimated to be costing Victoria anywhere up to $400 million a day with fears the current lockdown could run as high as $25 billion. 

Dozens of security guards ended up catching coronavirus from quarantined returned travellers while working in the hotels. 

‘After National Cabinet made its decision, I expected there that there would be a mix of different personnel playing different roles in the Program, including members of Victoria Police,’ Mr Andrews said in his statement to the inquiry.

‘But the way in which that decision was to be implemented, including the mix of personnel that would be engaged and their respective roles, was an operational matter. 

‘The decision to engage private security contractors, and many decisions like it, were of an operational nature. That is similarly so in the management of other disasters.’

The premier has told the inquiry that he maintains he was not aware of any offer of Australian Defence Force support for the inquiry at the time the program began. 

‘After the National Cabinet meeting on 27 March 2020, I understood that any ADF support for any State or Territory’s implementation of the mandatory self-quarantine decision would be provided where necessary and according to need,’ he stated. 

‘I understood that New South Wales was seen as having the greater need at that time. I did not understand, on the basis of the meeting, that Victoria would be receiving extensive ADF support in its implementation of the decision.’

The inquiry has heard repeatedly that ADF support had been on offer before a single traveller stepped foot into a Melbourne hotel. 

The inquiry has seen text massages referring to them, emails, scribbled notes and minutes from meetings. 

An outbreak at Rydges in May was the first time Victoria's health minister Jenny Mikakos even made an effort to find out who was running security at the COVID plagued hotels

An outbreak at Rydges in May was the first time Victoria's health minister Jenny Mikakos even made an effort to find out who was running security at the COVID plagued hotels

An outbreak at Rydges in May was the first time Victoria’s health minister Jenny Mikakos even made an effort to find out who was running security at the COVID plagued hotels 

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33466308 8771199 image a 2 1601009120033

Security at the Stamford was infected about three weeks after the Rydges, prompting the health minister to take urgent action to replace the workforce with prison guards

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria's deadly second wave of COVID-19

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria's deadly second wave of COVID-19

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria’s deadly second wave of COVID-19

‘I heard the Prime Minister’s comments in his press conference on the afternoon of 27 March 2020,’ Mr Andrews told the inquiry.

‘Those comments advanced a more generous position regarding the allocation of ADF personnel than had earlier been indicated. Later, in my press conference, I acknowledged that gesture, but I did not see that it necessarily changed what had been settled in National Cabinet.

‘I was not aware of any other offer of ADF personnel for the operation of the Program at its inception.’

Mr Andrews said he could not be certain why he told Victorians that he would be using private security at a press conference on March 27. 

‘I’m not certain why I mentioned police, private security and our health team. Those three groups of people and not a fourth or a fifth group,’ he said.

‘On the specifics I can’t clarify for you our outline for you or why I chose those three groups. I’m afraid I’ve tried to search my recall of this and I simply can’t, I can’t provide you detail.’

The inquiry had earlier seen text messages from former Victoria Police chief commissioner Graham Ashton declaring he had been told of the private security decision by someone within the Department of Premier and Cabinet that day. 

But Mr Andrews told the inquiry Mr Ashton did not receive the information from him.  

Former police chief Grahan Ashton (in green) tells a colleague on March 27 that the premier's department had told him private security had got the hotel quarantine gig

Former police chief Grahan Ashton (in green) tells a colleague on March 27 that the premier's department had told him private security had got the hotel quarantine gig

Former police chief Grahan Ashton (in green) tells a colleague on March 27 that the premier’s department had told him private security had got the hotel quarantine gig 

Former police chief Graham Ashton swears on the bible to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth

Former police chief Graham Ashton swears on the bible to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth

Former police chief Graham Ashton swears on the bible to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth

On Thursday, Victorian Health Minister Jenny Mikakos fronted the inquiry where she too failed to enlighten the nation as to who made the fateful error in deciding to employ private security firms as the frontline force against COVID-19. 

The board of inquiry, headed by former Family Court judge Jennifer Coate, was established to determine what went so drastically wrong with the hotel program. 

Mr Andrews called the inquiry in June after genomic sequencing revealed a number of coronavirus cases could be linked to ‘staff members in hotel quarantine breaching well known and well understood infection control protocols’. 

The inquiry has been running since August 17, but as it draws to an end, not a single person involved in the debacle has been able to pinpoint who came up with the idea to use private security. 

One after the other, police, ministers, public servants and patsies have fronted the inquiry to declare how little they know about how the crucial decision was made.

And if they ever did know, they had now forgotten. 

Even former Mr Ashton appeared to suffer from memory loss at the inquiry. 

Someone from the Premier’s department had told him the decision had been made, but he can’t recall who it was. 

On Thursday, the health minister said she would not even try to offer an opinion on who might be to blame. 

Ms Mikakos had copped a battering from barristers acting on behalf of the security companies that actually worked at the hotels. 

At the beginning of the day, the health minister had bragged how it had been her who cooked up the idea to place COVID-19 infected into hotels after being inspired by a social media post.

‘Yes, it is, and my very firm recollection about this matter was that I conceived of the idea of Hotels for Heroes,’ she said. 

‘It was one that I put to the premier’s chief of staff I believe on approximately 27 March. I had had read about a program in the United Kingdom through social media that was accommodated healthcare workers in caravans, and I thought that that would be a good idea for us to have a look at providing some accommodation to healthcare workers who were either infected or exposed to COVID-19.’

The plan was quickly turned into the doomed hotel quarantine program which saw the government’s jobs department contract the private security guards. 

ADF personnel were used successfully to police returning travellers at hotels in NSW, but were rejected in Victoria amid fears they had no real authority to detain people

ADF personnel were used successfully to police returning travellers at hotels in NSW, but were rejected in Victoria amid fears they had no real authority to detain people

ADF personnel were used successfully to police returning travellers at hotels in NSW, but were rejected in Victoria amid fears they had no real authority to detain people 

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews faced the hotel inquiry on Friday. His colleagues have failed to remember crucial details about how the plan came together

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews faced the hotel inquiry on Friday. His colleagues have failed to remember crucial details about how the plan came together

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews faced the hotel inquiry on Friday. His colleagues have failed to remember crucial details about how the plan came together

Ms Mikakos told the inquiry she did not burden herself with who was running security until two months later when she was told an outbreak at Rydges on Swanston in Melbourne had been spread by a security guard. 

Until then, Ms Mikakos had not even bothered to read the plan established to protect Victorians from the threat of COVID-19 infection from returning travellers. 

‘I explained at the outset of my evidence, that ministers play a high-level policy and decision-making role,’ she said.  

‘I wouldn’t expect to be provided a huge amount of detail around specific operational matters. They were matters that sit appropriately with my officials.’

Ms Mikakos was asked if she believed it was a dereliction of her duty as a minister  not to have read the operational plan for the response of her department to the pandemic.

‘Not at all,’ she said.

‘In fact, my department did not formally provide me with a brief on it. It’s something that I have sourced because I wanted to familiarise myself with it.’

Ms Mikakos said that once the first security guard caught COVID-19 while working in the Stamford Plaza – three weeks after the case in the Rydges on Swanston in late May – she formed a view to replace the security guard workforce. 

The inquiry has heard from the heath department secretary Kym Peake, the secretary of the Department of Premier and Cabinet Chris Eccles and of course the Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton. 

Jobs minister Martin Pakula's department had contracted the private security companies to perform the job, but claims he did not make the decision to use them

Jobs minister Martin Pakula's department had contracted the private security companies to perform the job, but claims he did not make the decision to use them

Jobs minister Martin Pakula’s department had contracted the private security companies to perform the job, but claims he did not make the decision to use them 

The quarantine disaster in Victoria allowed COVID-19 enter aged care facilities resulting in hundreds of deaths. Many Victorians fear no-one will ever be held accountable

The quarantine disaster in Victoria allowed COVID-19 enter aged care facilities resulting in hundreds of deaths. Many Victorians fear no-one will ever be held accountable

The quarantine disaster in Victoria allowed COVID-19 enter aged care facilities resulting in hundreds of deaths. Many Victorians fear no-one will ever be held accountable 

None were able to shed any light on who made the decision to employ the private security guards. 

They all agreed it was probably a bad idea in hindsight. 

For one, they were the ‘wrong cohorts’ for the job, Dr Sutton noted. 

Documents tendered to the inquiry revealed some of the security guards had expressed concerns about something as simple as using hand sanitiser because it was against their religion.  

Dr Sutton told the inquiry he had no input into the hotel quarantine program despite being an expert in the field of infectious diseases. 

‘With the benefit of hindsight, I can see that using a highly casualised workforce, generally from a lower socio-economic background, where that means that poor leave provisions limit how one can care for and financially support one’s family if unwell,’ Dr Sutton wrote in his submission to the inquiry.

In August, the premier told a Public Accounts and Estimates Committee hearing that claims Australia Defence Force personnel had been offered to man Victoria’s hotels was wrong.

‘[It’s] fundamentally incorrect to assert that there were hundreds of ADF staff on offer and somehow, someone said no,’ he said.

'Wrong cohorts': Security guards working at hotels have been blamed for Victoria's deadly second COVID-19 wave

'Wrong cohorts': Security guards working at hotels have been blamed for Victoria's deadly second COVID-19 wave

‘Wrong cohorts’: Security guards working at hotels have been blamed for Victoria’s deadly second COVID-19 wave 

The use of ADF personnel was noted by the police minister before the program even kicked off

The use of ADF personnel was noted by the police minister before the program even kicked off

The use of ADF personnel was noted by the police minister before the program even kicked off

This week, police minister Lisa Neville said she had not been consulted either and was surprised when during a March 27 meeting with Victoria Police and Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp the decision to employ private security appeared to have been set.  

While Mr Ashton claimed he did not make the decision, he had no issue with private security being used at the hotels. 

‘It made sense at the time,’ Mr Ashton told the inquiry.

While a decision of the board cannot be predicted, that crucial March 27 meeting held on the day the premier announced the use of private security guards provides frustrated Victorians with the best chance of working out what exactly happened.

At the State Control Centre, Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Mick Grainger told Mr Crisp it was the preference of Victoria Police that private security get the hotel gig. 

Victoria Police has argued since that they were simply expressing a preference, not a direction.  

Whatever the case, after that meeting the decision appeared to be set in stone. 

‘I take that as a clear direction we should go off and do it,’ Jobs department secretary Simon Phemister told the inquiry.  

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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BLM mob in Louisville smash library windows and throw flare as cops declare ‘unlawful assembly’

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blm mob in louisville smash library windows and throw flare as cops declare unlawful assembly

Police and Black Lives Matter protesters were in a tense two-hour standoff at a Louisville church on Thursday night, after the demonstrators declared the church a ‘sanctuary’ and demonstrated there when a 9pm curfew went into effect.

Demonstrators massed at First Unitarian Church, where clergy allowed them to seek refuge on church grounds to avoid arrest during curfew, and a massive police cordon was established around the property. 

About 200 people occupied the church grounds, where demonstrators taunted officers in riot gear who stood nearby, forming a massive cordon around the church.

It came during another night of unrest across the country over the grand jury decision not to directly charge officers in the fatal police shooting of Breonna Taylor during a search warrant raid, and one day after two Louisville police officers were shot and .

In Hollywood, chaotic scenes unfolded when a truck accelerated through a crowd of protesters, causing injuries. Demonstrators were also seen surrounding the truck and trying to open the driver’s side door.

In St. Louis, protesters blocked westbound lanes of Interstate 64, and in New York City, a large group of demonstrators marched into Manhattan from Brooklyn over the Williamsburg Bridge. 

In Louisville, BLM protesters smashed the windows of a downtown public library and threw a flare inside as authorities extended a citywide curfew into the weekend and the National Guard prepared to deploy.  

Late on Thursday, what appeared to be armed militiamen were spotted guarding a gas station in downtown Louisville. 

Demonstrators massed at First Unitarian Church in Louisville on Thursday, where clergy allowed them to seek refuge on church grounds to avoid arrest after a 9pm curfew went into effect

Demonstrators massed at First Unitarian Church in Louisville on Thursday, where clergy allowed them to seek refuge on church grounds to avoid arrest after a 9pm curfew went into effect

Demonstrators massed at First Unitarian Church in Louisville on Thursday, where clergy allowed them to seek refuge on church grounds to avoid arrest after a 9pm curfew went into effect

About 200 people occupied the church grounds, where demonstrators taunted officers in riot gear who stood nearby, forming a massive cordon around the church

About 200 people occupied the church grounds, where demonstrators taunted officers in riot gear who stood nearby, forming a massive cordon around the church

About 200 people occupied the church grounds, where demonstrators taunted officers in riot gear who stood nearby, forming a massive cordon around the church

Police established a heavy presence around the church, blocking off the protesters from roaming downtown

Police established a heavy presence around the church, blocking off the protesters from roaming downtown

Police established a heavy presence around the church, blocking off the protesters from roaming downtown

Police officers hold a perimeter around the First Unitarian Church where protesters are seeking refuge at during a curfew, a day after a grand jury decision in the March killing of Taylor in her home in Louisville, Kentucky

Police officers hold a perimeter around the First Unitarian Church where protesters are seeking refuge at during a curfew, a day after a grand jury decision in the March killing of Taylor in her home in Louisville, Kentucky

Police officers hold a perimeter around the First Unitarian Church where protesters are seeking refuge at during a curfew, a day after a grand jury decision in the March killing of Taylor in her home in Louisville, Kentucky

Shortly before 11pm on Thursday, about 200 people remained in the area outside the First Unitarian Church in Louisville. 

The stone gothic-style church was built in the late 19th century and is known for its progressive ideology. A large Black Lives Matter banner hangs outside it. 

A church leader at the scene explained that churches were exempt from the emergency curfew order, and said that the demonstrators had been invited onto the church grounds to avoid arrest. 

Video from the scene shows some of the demonstrators at the church demanding that white protesters leave the grounds of the ‘sanctuary’. ‘All you white motherf***ers leave!’ one man was seen shouting. 

Soon after 11pm, the protesters at the church began to disperse after police told them that they could go home without being arrested. 

One of those arrested on Thursday night in the Kentucky city was Rep. Attica Scott, a state lawmaker. Scott, a Democrat from Louisville, was among a group arrested near the main branch of the Louisville Free Public Library and First Unitarian Church at the intersection of South Fourth and York streets, officials said.

Scott is charged with first-degree rioting, a Class D felony, as well as failure to disperse and unlawful assembly.

She is the author of ‘Breonna’s law.’ The proposed Kentucky legislation would ban the use of ‘no-knock’ warrants statewide.

Initially, reports claimed Louisville police used a ‘no-knock’ warrant to enter Taylor’s home in the early morning hours of March 13. On Wednesday, Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said an independent witness verified that officers knocked and announced their presence during the raid.

Rep. Attica Scott, a Kentucky state lawmaker, is seen at a demonstration in June. She was arrested on Thursday and charged with first-degree rioting, a Class D felony, as well as failure to disperse and unlawful assembly

Rep. Attica Scott, a Kentucky state lawmaker, is seen at a demonstration in June. She was arrested on Thursday and charged with first-degree rioting, a Class D felony, as well as failure to disperse and unlawful assembly

Rep. Attica Scott, a Kentucky state lawmaker, is seen at a demonstration in June. She was arrested on Thursday and charged with first-degree rioting, a Class D felony, as well as failure to disperse and unlawful assembly

The stone gothic-style The First Unitarian church was built in the late 19th century and is known for its progressive ideology. A large Black Lives Matter banner hangs outside it

The stone gothic-style The First Unitarian church was built in the late 19th century and is known for its progressive ideology. A large Black Lives Matter banner hangs outside it

The stone gothic-style The First Unitarian church was built in the late 19th century and is known for its progressive ideology. A large Black Lives Matter banner hangs outside it

Shortly before 11pm on Thursday, about 200 people remained in the area outside the First Unitarian Church in Louisville

Shortly before 11pm on Thursday, about 200 people remained in the area outside the First Unitarian Church in Louisville

Shortly before 11pm on Thursday, about 200 people remained in the area outside the First Unitarian Church in Louisville

A person sits in a police vehicle after being detained, Thursday in Louisville. Authorities pleaded for calm while activists vowed to fight on Thursday in Kentucky's largest city, where a gunman wounded two police officers during protests

A person sits in a police vehicle after being detained, Thursday in Louisville. Authorities pleaded for calm while activists vowed to fight on Thursday in Kentucky's largest city, where a gunman wounded two police officers during protests

A person sits in a police vehicle after being detained, Thursday in Louisville. Authorities pleaded for calm while activists vowed to fight on Thursday in Kentucky’s largest city, where a gunman wounded two police officers during protests

Protests over the killing of Breonna Taylor continued Thursday in the city of Louisville. Pictured is a memorial to Breonna Taylor, that has been set up at Jefferson Square Park

Protests over the killing of Breonna Taylor continued Thursday in the city of Louisville. Pictured is a memorial to Breonna Taylor, that has been set up at Jefferson Square Park

Protests over the killing of Breonna Taylor continued Thursday in the city of Louisville. Pictured is a memorial to Breonna Taylor, that has been set up at Jefferson Square Park

Several dozen demonstrators left the First Unitarian Church around 11pm Thursday after a negotiated end to the tense confrontation there. Police who had gathered there with riot gear also pulled back.

Several arrests had been made earlier that evening at an intersection outside the church. But there appeared to be no police interference as the protest disbanded.

Demonstrator Nicole Aghaaliandastjerdi said she knew several people taken into custody and believes they were arrested unfairly.

‘I am not sad, I am angry,’ she said, vowing to return downtown Friday to help her friends get out of jail.

33603076 8771029 image m 47 1601010322348

33603076 8771029 image m 47 1601010322348

Carmen Jones, a local organizer, instructs protesters over a megaphone as they arrive at the First Unitarian Church for refuge

Carmen Jones, a local organizer, instructs protesters over a megaphone as they arrive at the First Unitarian Church for refuge

Carmen Jones, a local organizer, instructs protesters over a megaphone as they arrive at the First Unitarian Church for refuge

A priest from the First Unitarian Church talks to the riot police as protesters take refuge in the church shortly after curfew

A priest from the First Unitarian Church talks to the riot police as protesters take refuge in the church shortly after curfew

A priest from the First Unitarian Church talks to the riot police as protesters take refuge in the church shortly after curfew

Police established a heavy cordon around the church, eventually allowing the protesters to leave if they pledged not to vandalize property

Police established a heavy cordon around the church, eventually allowing the protesters to leave if they pledged not to vandalize property

Police established a heavy cordon around the church, eventually allowing the protesters to leave if they pledged not to vandalize property

At the Louisville church, people in the crowd chanted ‘Black Lives Matter’ as tensions continued for a second night in the city. 

Video released by Louisville Metro Police Department shows protesters chanting and taunting officers in riot gear. 

Police appeared to be keeping their distance from the protesters, who did not appear to be willing to disperse. 

At around 11pm Eastern time, police began pulling back after apparently reaching an agreement with the protesters, who pledged to leave church grounds and continue marching on the pedestrian sidewalk.

The police asked the protesters to pledge not to vandalize property. 

Before the march began, protester Shameka Parrish-Wright told the crowd to stay together and take care of each other if they were met with force.

‘We want to show the country and the world what we’re about,’ Parrish-Wright said. 

Louisville police released images showing officers detain protesters who violated curfew

Louisville police released images showing officers detain protesters who violated curfew

Louisville police released images showing officers detain protesters who violated curfew

Some 100 protesters gathered in downtown Louisville to defy a 9pm curfew and stood face to face with police in riot gear

Some 100 protesters gathered in downtown Louisville to defy a 9pm curfew and stood face to face with police in riot gear

Some 100 protesters gathered in downtown Louisville to defy a 9pm curfew and stood face to face with police in riot gear

Police in Louisville detain a protester who is pinned to the sidewalk on Thursday night

Police in Louisville detain a protester who is pinned to the sidewalk on Thursday night

Police in Louisville detain a protester who is pinned to the sidewalk on Thursday night

Some protesters blocked roads as they marched. Police, meanwhile, were seen nearby and patrol cars blocked some roads. 

There was no immediate signs of a confrontation.

On Wednesday, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear mobilized 500 members of the National Guard.

The governor ordered them deployed to Louisville to prevent civil unrest.

Meanwhile, city officials who initially announced a 72-hour curfew have extended it through the weekend.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said the curfew, which goes into effect from 9pm to 6:30am each night, does not apply to people commuting to work, going to houses of worship for services or seeking medical attention, the Louisville Courier Journal reported.  

Fischer has encouraged Louisville residents to begin heading home at 8pm each night so as to allow enough time to abide by the curfew. 

After curfew set in, the protesters took up refuge at Calvary Episcopal Church. Louisville police in riot gear blocked off all roadways leading to the church

After curfew set in, the protesters took up refuge at Calvary Episcopal Church. Louisville police in riot gear blocked off all roadways leading to the church

After curfew set in, the protesters took up refuge at Calvary Episcopal Church. Louisville police in riot gear blocked off all roadways leading to the church

Several of the protesters stood opposite police in riot gear who were standing on the street

Several of the protesters stood opposite police in riot gear who were standing on the street

Several of the protesters stood opposite police in riot gear who were standing on the street 

Police appeared to be in discussions with individuals linked to the demonstrators, though it is unclear what was said

Police appeared to be in discussions with individuals linked to the demonstrators, though it is unclear what was said

Police appeared to be in discussions with individuals linked to the demonstrators, though it is unclear what was said

Police in riot gear are seen above talking to a civilian as protesters look on from the church grounds

Police in riot gear are seen above talking to a civilian as protesters look on from the church grounds

Police in riot gear are seen above talking to a civilian as protesters look on from the church grounds

Earlier on Thursday evening, BLM marchers confronted about a dozen members of an armed militia.

The militia members were dressed in full military garb and carrying assault rifles. They identified themselves as ‘Oath Keepers,’ a group that calls itself ‘nonpartisan association of current and former serving military, police, and first responders’ whose goal is to ‘defend the Constitution.’

The Oath Keepers members said they were in Louisville to protect property. 

‘We’re not here to start nothing,’ a militia member from North Carolina told the Courier Journal. 

The Southern Poverty Law Center calls Oath Keepers ‘one of the largest radical anti-government groups in the U.S.’ 

A few BLM protesters confronted members of the Oath Keepers, but most kept away.

‘Back up! Don’t be stupid!’ one man yelled. 

‘Walk through and keep moving. Do not engage these people with no guns!’

Earlier on Thursday evening, BLM marchers confronted about a dozen members of the Oath Keepers, an armed militia

Earlier on Thursday evening, BLM marchers confronted about a dozen members of the Oath Keepers, an armed militia

Earlier on Thursday evening, BLM marchers confronted about a dozen members of the Oath Keepers, an armed militia

Oath Keepers were set-up at a Hampton Inn in downtown Louisville, and said they were in Louisville to protect property

Oath Keepers were set-up at a Hampton Inn in downtown Louisville, and said they were in Louisville to protect property

Oath Keepers were set-up at a Hampton Inn in downtown Louisville, and said they were in Louisville to protect property

BLM protesters got into a heated exchange with heavily armed militia that were set-up at a Hampton Inn

BLM protesters got into a heated exchange with heavily armed militia that were set-up at a Hampton Inn

BLM protesters got into a heated exchange with heavily armed militia that were set-up at a Hampton Inn

Shortly afterward, Breonna Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, made a brief appearance at Jefferson Square Park.

She stood for a few moments at the memorial that was erected for her daughter.

Palmer, who has not said anything publicly since the grand jury decision was announced on Wednesday, wore a black satin jacket that read ‘Until Freedom.’

Underneath the jacket she wore a white t-shirt with a picture of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron over the words ‘Mitch’s b****.’

Cameron, a Republican and the first African American elected to the position of state attorney general, is a protege of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Welcome to Bali’s coronavirus nightmare: Cases in Australia’s favourite holiday destination soar

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welcome to balis coronavirus nightmare cases in australias favourite holiday destination soar

Bali has seen an explosion of coronavirus cases and a disturbing spike in its death rate since the island hotspot was opened to tourists.

The popular Indonesian tourist island began welcoming domestic tourists back on July 31 after its tourism industry was smashed by the pandemic.  

And while authorities have put restrictions in place to slow the spread of the deadly disease, the number of cases has continued to skyrocket.

Bali now has the fastest-rising death rates from coronavirus in Indonesia.

Bali has seen an explosion of coronavirus cases and a disturbing spike in its death rate since the island hotspot was opened to tourists (Pictured: A couple hug on a beach in Bali)

Bali has seen an explosion of coronavirus cases and a disturbing spike in its death rate since the island hotspot was opened to tourists (Pictured: A couple hug on a beach in Bali)

Bali has seen an explosion of coronavirus cases and a disturbing spike in its death rate since the island hotspot was opened to tourists (Pictured: A couple hug on a beach in Bali)

Kuta near Denpasar, Bali, was empty in May after the pandemic hit, but tourists have since flooded back to the tourist hotspot

Kuta near Denpasar, Bali, was empty in May after the pandemic hit, but tourists have since flooded back to the tourist hotspot

Kuta near Denpasar, Bali, was empty in May after the pandemic hit, but tourists have since flooded back to the tourist hotspot

A surfer walks along Canggu beach in Bali on September 1. An expert has warned the island may need to shut its borders again to domestic tourism

A surfer walks along Canggu beach in Bali on September 1. An expert has warned the island may need to shut its borders again to domestic tourism

A surfer walks along Canggu beach in Bali on September 1. An expert has warned the island may need to shut its borders again to domestic tourism

Estimates show figures have increased by 500 per cent since the island reopened, with about 241 COVID-19 related deaths recorded. 

Local epidemiologist Dr I Gusti Ngurah Kade Mahardika said reopening the island to tourists was to blame. 

‘Bali’s reopening has caused a public euphoria for local residents. They think Bali is open now so they’re free to do anything and they flock to tourist destinations,’ he told ABC.

Each day about 4,000 tourists flood to the island, which has been fuelling the crisis, he said. 

He said the island needed to be closed off again even to the country’s other provinces to stop the spread of the virus. 

‘The ideal condition to suppress the number of COVID-19 cases would be under lockdown,’ virologist I Gusti Ngurah Mahardika told Coconuts.

Local epidemiologist Dr I Gusti Ngurah Kade Mahardika said reopening the island to tourists was to blame (Pictured: A street food vendor and customers wear face masks in Bali, Indonesia)

Local epidemiologist Dr I Gusti Ngurah Kade Mahardika said reopening the island to tourists was to blame (Pictured: A street food vendor and customers wear face masks in Bali, Indonesia)

Local epidemiologist Dr I Gusti Ngurah Kade Mahardika said reopening the island to tourists was to blame (Pictured: A street food vendor and customers wear face masks in Bali, Indonesia)

Balinese Hindu pilgrims held a prayers to celebrate Galungan holiday on September 18 amid Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak

Balinese Hindu pilgrims held a prayers to celebrate Galungan holiday on September 18 amid Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak

Balinese Hindu pilgrims held a prayers to celebrate Galungan holiday on September 18 amid Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak

‘[That means] close Bali temporarily, limit people’s movement – permitting leaving the house only for very important purposes, such as looking for food, medicine, and the likes.’

Officials in Bali have defended the decision to re-open the province’s border to domestic tourists from July 31.

But deaths in the past six weeks have since doubled, with 151 people on the island having now lost their lives to the virus. 

Indonesia as a whole has recorded more than 197,000 COVID-19 cases and 8,000 deaths.

A woman wears a protective face mask at a shopping mall in Bali. Plans to reopen the island to foreign tourists have been shelved to at least the end of the year

A woman wears a protective face mask at a shopping mall in Bali. Plans to reopen the island to foreign tourists have been shelved to at least the end of the year

A woman wears a protective face mask at a shopping mall in Bali. Plans to reopen the island to foreign tourists have been shelved to at least the end of the year

Alarming photos last week emerged showing soldiers walking down the streets of Denpasar handing out fines of 100,000 rupiah ($9.30 AUD) to anyone without a face covering.

Face masks have been mandatory in public across Indonesia since early April. 

Authorities previously came up with a range of punishments for those refusing to comply including performing push-ups and buying one kilogram of rice to go towards Bali locals severely affected by the pandemic.

Some police officers even made offenders dance.

Residents exercising with face masks in Denpasar in Bali this week. Indonesia has recorded more than 197,000 COVID-19 cases and 8,000 deaths

Residents exercising with face masks in Denpasar in Bali this week. Indonesia has recorded more than 197,000 COVID-19 cases and 8,000 deaths

Residents exercising with face masks in Denpasar in Bali this week. Indonesia has recorded more than 197,000 COVID-19 cases and 8,000 deaths

The popular Indonesian tourist island began welcoming domestic tourists back on July 31 after its tourism industry was smashed by the pandemic (Pictured: Healthcare workers take blood sample from citizen)

The popular Indonesian tourist island began welcoming domestic tourists back on July 31 after its tourism industry was smashed by the pandemic (Pictured: Healthcare workers take blood sample from citizen)

The popular Indonesian tourist island began welcoming domestic tourists back on July 31 after its tourism industry was smashed by the pandemic (Pictured: Healthcare workers take blood sample from citizen)

Bali was supposed to welcome back international tourists from September 4 but has since announced this has been pushed back until the end of the year. 

‘The Indonesian government couldn’t reopen its doors to foreign travellers until the end of 2020 as we remain a red zone,’ Mr Koster said in a statement last month. 

‘The situation is not conducive to allowing foreign tourists to come to Indonesia, including to Bali.

‘Bali cannot fail because it could adversely impact the image of Indonesia, including Bali, in the eyes of the world, which could prove counter-productive to the recovery of travel.’ 

The military are now a common sight on the streets of Bali. Locals are fined 100,000 rupiah if they head outside without a face mask

The military are now a common sight on the streets of Bali. Locals are fined 100,000 rupiah if they head outside without a face mask

The military are now a common sight on the streets of Bali. Locals are fined 100,000 rupiah if they head outside without a face mask

A shop keeper waits for customers at a market in Gianyar, Bali on August 20. Face masks are mandatory in public across Indonesia

A shop keeper waits for customers at a market in Gianyar, Bali on August 20. Face masks are mandatory in public across Indonesia

A shop keeper waits for customers at a market in Gianyar, Bali on August 20. Face masks are mandatory in public across Indonesia

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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