News Briefs for the Week of Mar. 1, 2017

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Keke Collier.

Check out the latest news from around the nation!


'Biggest Loser' Host Bob Harper Suffers Heart Attack

(AP) Fitness trainer and host of NBC's "Biggest Loser" Bob Harper says he is recovering from a serious heart attack that left him unconscious for two days.

Harper tells TMZ he was working out in a gym in New York City this month when he collapsed. He says a doctor who also was in the gym performed CPR on him.

The 51-year-old Harper says he spent eight days in a New York hospital and has not yet been cleared to fly home to Los Angeles.

Harper has been a fixture on all 17 seasons of "The Biggest Loser." He served as a trainer on the show from 2004 to 2015. He took over as host of the reality weight loss program last year.


Trans Woman Shot and Killed in Chicago Neighborhood

(EDGE) A transgender woman of color was shot and killed in the Chicago neighborhood of Englewood Tuesday morning, police told local news station WLS-TV.

Initial reports, including reports from authorities, misgendered the victim as male but friends later identified her as 24-year-old Keke Collier.

Police responded to a call of gun shots around 6:14 a.m. last Tuesday and found the victim lying in the street with wounds in the chest, arm and hand, authorities told the news station. Collier was sent to a nearby hospital where she was pronounced dead.

The founder and director of trans justice organization TNTJ Project, LaSaia Wade, said Collier also went by the name Tiara Richmond, according to

Collier's friend Shasha Lauren told the website witnesses who spoke with her said she got in a car with a man who allegedly shot her. WLS-TV reports police said the suspect, who fled the scene in a red car, had dreadlocks and was wearing a black hoodie. 

Friends have been memorializing Collier on social media.

According to, Collier's death marks the fourth reported homicide of a transgender woman this year.


NAACP Urges North Carolina Boycott Over Conservative Laws

(AP) The NAACP urged religious conferences, athletic events and musicians on Friday to avoid North Carolina as part of a national boycott protesting the state's conservative policies including a law limiting LGBT protections.

It was the first step in a national boycott that could expand to include other economic and tourism measures, according to a resolution approved by the group's national board. The organization stopped short of telling its members to cease all travel and spending in the state - which has been a component of previous boycotts elsewhere.

"Right now in the state of North Carolina we have children -- Dear God, children! -- who are being imperiled, who face the prospect of being bullied as a consequence of politicians using them as political pawns while we talk about bathrooms," said the NAACP's national president Cornell Brooks.

His comments come two days after Republican President Donald Trump's administration rescinded federal guidance that public schools nationwide should allow transgender students to use restrooms that match their gender identity.

The Rev. William Barber, who leads the state's NAACP chapter, proposed the boycott late last year after a deal fell apart to repeal the North Carolina law known best for requiring transgender people to use restrooms in many public buildings corresponding to the sex on their birth certificate. The law, often referred to as House Bill 2, also excludes gender identity and sexual orientation from statewide antidiscrimination protections.

But Barber stressed the boycott would also pressure the Republican-controlled legislature over efforts to limit the new Democratic governor's power as well as ongoing legal battles over voting rights and how electoral districts are drawn.

"What has happened in North Carolina makes this state a battleground ... for the soul of America," said Barber, who has drawn thousands to rallies protesting conservative policies in recent years.

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