The Latest: Barr doesn’t respond to exoneration question

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on U.S. Attorney General William Barr’s visit to Alaska (all times local):

3:55 p.m.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr has ignored a question about why he exonerated President Donald Trump of obstruction of justice.

Barr is in Alaska to meet with tribal leaders and other officials Wednesday about public safety challenges in the vast state. His visit comes the same day special counsel Robert Mueller made clear that he didn’t exonerate Trump in his investigation into Russian election meddling.

Barr didn’t respond to a question from The Associated Press as he left an Alaska Native justice roundtable.

The attorney general listened to tribal representatives who say there’s a lack of law enforcement in villages, slow response times, violence against women and substance abuse.

Barr says he considered the meeting an “introductory discussion” and was open to a follow-up.

He met with top Alaska law enforcement officials earlier in the day.

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10:15 a.m.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr is visiting Alaska to meet with tribal leaders and other officials about disproportionately high rates of violence and sexual assault in Native communities.

His visit comes the same day special counsel Robert Mueller gave a clear defense to criticism from Barr and others that he should have decided whether to charge President Donald Trump with obstruction of justice during his investigation into Russian election meddling.

Justice Department spokeswoman Chloe Martin says Barr won’t address Mueller’s remarks or take questions Wednesday.

Barr is scheduled to participate in an Alaska Native justice roundtable and visit the state crime lab as Congress and advocates have renewed a focus on violence against Native American women.

The most recent federal figures show that more than half have faced sexual and domestic violence at some point in their lives.

Categories: National & International News