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News Wrap: Acquittal in Freddie Gray case stirs outrage; deadly tornado in China

In our news wrap Thursday, Baltimore police officer Caesar Goodson -- who drove the van in which Freddie Gray suffered a broken neck in 2015 -- was found not guilty for his role in Gray’s death, prompting dozens of protesters to voice their frustrations outside the courthouse. Also, a powerful tornado has killed at least 78 and injured some 500 more around the Chinese city of Yancheng.

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  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Good evening. I'm Judy Woodruff.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    And I'm Hari Sreenivasan.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    On the "NewsHour" tonight: a big day at the U.S. Supreme Court. Justices split 4-4 on a challenge to President Obama's immigration policy, plus a decision that colleges can take race into consideration in deciding whom to admit.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Also ahead this Thursday: the politics of guns. with official cameras turned off, Democrats turn to social media to document their more-than-24-hour-long sit-in protest on the House floor.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    And a fateful day for the U.K. In a closely divided vote, millions of Britons decide their future with the European Union.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    All that and more on tonight's "PBS NewsHour."

    (BREAK)

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    The Supreme Court weighed in on two politically charged cases today. The justices, in a 4-4 tie, effectively killed President Obama's executive actions on immigration. His program would have deferred deportation for more than four million undocumented immigrants, and allowed them to work legally in the U.S.

    President Obama reacted to the court's decision at the White House this morning.

  • PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:

    Good morning, everybody.

    For more than two decades now, our immigration system, everybody acknowledges, has been broken. And the fact that the Supreme Court wasn't able to issue a decision today doesn't just set this system back even further. It takes us further from the country that we aspire to be. This is part of the consequence of the Republican failure so far to give a fair hearing to Mr. Merrick Garland, my nominee to the Supreme Court.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    And in another major decision, the justices ruled it is constitutional for universities, in this case, the University of Texas, to consider race in admissions. We will take a closer look at today's Supreme Court rulings right after this news summary.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Another police officer in Baltimore has been found not guilty in the 2015 death of a 25-year-old black man, Freddie Gray.

    Caesar Goodson was driving the police van in which Gray suffered a broken neck while in custody. Goodson faced the most serious charges of all the officers involved. He was acquitted on all counts, including second-degree murder. Dozens of protesters gathered outside the courthouse in Baltimore today to voice their frustrations.

  • TAWANDA JONES, Protester:

    We are human beings. We deserve — we deserve to have the right to walk in our communities, and ride in our communities and be safe by people we pay and send to serve and protect us. Who the hell are they serving? And who the hell are they protecting? Because it damn sure ain't Freddie Gray.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Six police officers have been charged in the case. But only Goodson was accused of committing murder. The first trial ended in a hung jury. The second officer was acquitted of all charges.

    In the presidential campaign, Republican Donald Trump was forced today to defend claims he's made that Democrat Hillary Clinton's e-mails were hacked while she was secretary of state.

    Yesterday, Trump said — quote — "Her server was easily hacked by foreign governments, perhaps even by her financial backers in communist China, putting all of America and our citizens in danger" — end quote.

    But, today, Trump took a step back when he was pressed by Lester Holt of NBC News.

  • LESTER HOLT, NBC Nightly News:

    You also made the claim that her e-mail, personal e-mail server, had been hacked, probably by foreign governments, suggesting that…

    DONALD TRUMP (R), Presumptive Presidential Nominee: Well, you don't know that it hasn't been.

  • LESTER HOLT:

    Well, wait a minute, suggesting that she would be compromised as president. What evidence do you have?

  • DONALD TRUMP:

    Well first of all, she shouldn't have had a personal server, OK? She shouldn't have had it. It's illegal. What she did is illegal. Now, she might not be judged that way because, you know, because we have a rigged system. But what she did is illegal. She shouldn't have had a personal server

  • LESTER HOLT:

    But is there any evidence that it was hacked, other than routine fishing?

  • DONALD TRUMP:

    I think I read that and I heard it and somebody…

  • LESTER HOLT:

    Where?

  • DONALD TRUMP:

    … that also gave me that information. I will report back to you. I will give it to you.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Clinton's campaign has maintained there's no evidence hackers ever penetrated her private e-mail server.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    In China, a powerful tornado has killed at least 78 people, and leveled a large number of buildings. Some 500 people were injured. It hit a densely populated area near the city of Yancheng, about 500 miles south of Beijing. The twister overturned cars. Roads were blocked with trees, downed power lines and other debris. There were reports of winds up to about 80 miles per hour in some parts.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    It was a historic day for Colombia, as the government signed a cease-fire with leftist FARC rebels, closing a half-century-long chapter of bloodshed. At a ceremony in Havana, Cuba, the Colombian president and the leader of the FARC formally approved the agreement to settle longstanding obstacles to peace, including the FARC's disarmament.

    That now clears the way for a final peace deal, which negotiators hope to clinch by July 20.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Back in this country, the federal government now says filtered tap water is safe for everyone in Flint, Michigan. The announcement lifts a recommendation that pregnant women, nursing mothers, and children under 6 only drink bottled water to avoid lead exposure.

    The city's drinking water became contaminated when lead from old pipes leached into homes and businesses, triggering a public health emergency.

    Volkswagen will pay more than $10 billion to settle claims tied to its diesel emissions cheating scandal. It was widely reported the majority of the money will compensate owners of nearly 500,000 vehicles programmed to cheat on emissions tests. The rest will penalize government agencies and fund pollution offset projects. The final terms of the settlement will be released Tuesday.

    Stocks surged on Wall Street today, as traders eagerly awaited the outcome of today's British referendum on whether to remain in the European Union. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 230 points to close at 18011. The Nasdaq rose more than 76 points, and the S&P 500 added nearly 28.

    New data out today from the U.S. Census Bureau shows Asians continue to be the fastest growing racial group in the U.S. The Asian population rose 3.4 percent over the past year, while the white population, including those who chose white along with another race, showed the slowest growth, up just one half of a percent. There are 21 million Asians in the U.S. Their population has steadily surged since 2000, largely due to international migration.

    And after decades of debate, a Los Angeles jury has ruled Led Zeppelin didn't steal the opening riff of their classic song "Stairway to Heaven." The rock band was accused of copying the chords from a song by the American band Spirit. The two groups played together in 1970, a year before "Stairway to Heaven"'s release.

    Here's Led Zeppelin's iconic guitar opening, as heard in this 1973 performance.

    (MUSIC)

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    And here are the chords in question from the band Spirit's song "Taurus," so you can judge for yourself.

    (MUSIC)

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    The jury ruled the chords of the two songs were not intrinsically similar.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour": big Supreme Court decisions on immigration and affirmative action; what will happen if Britain leaves the European Union; House Democrats sit in for more than 24-hours to push gun control legislation; and much more.

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