- Killings of police and of black men have heightened tensions
- Attorney general also faces questions about Clinton e-mails
U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch called for stronger “bonds of trust” between law enforcement and the communities they serve following the killing of five Dallas police officers and continuing protests against police nationwide over shootings of black men.
“At the same time that we’re working to support police and citizens in their efforts to build stronger and more united communities, we remain committed to keeping those communities safe and secure,” Lynch said in testimony prepared for a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday. “We will continue to offer our state and local partners funding, training, and technical assistance for critical programs and assets like body-worn cameras, de-escalation training, and education in implicit bias.”
Lynch’s testimony comes amid mounting tensions between police and citizens in several U.S. cities. Hundreds of demonstrators have been arrested in recent days during protests organized by groups including Black Lives Matter. President Barack Obama cut short a trip to Europe in order to travel to Dallas with Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday.
The Dallas killings on July 7 were carried out by 25-year-old Micah Johnson, a military veteran who began firing during a peaceful protest against the police killing of black men in Minnesota and Louisiana. In addition to the five police killed, nine were wounded, according to the Associated Press.
While the attorney general’s prepared testimony focused on the Dallas shooting, the congressional hearing was originally called to probe Lynch’s decision accepting the FBI’s recommendation not to prosecute Hillary Clinton or her aides. Questions about that topic are likely to remain part of Tuesday’s proceedings.
FBI Director James Comey announced July 5 that the agency found Clinton and her aides had been “extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information” when she was secretary of state, but he added that “no reasonable prosecutor” would bring charges in the case.