Sunrise Smart Start: Friday, February 26

Sunrise Smart Start

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Here are the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021.

Protests continue for police reform and justice for Daniel Prude in Rochester

Thursday continued a third night of protesting in downtown Rochester over the grand jury’s decision to not indict any officers involved in the death of Daniel Prude.

The group gathered on Jefferson Avenue to discuss Daniel’s Law, and pay tribute with chalk drawings in honor of Prude.

Police Accountability Board frustrated with Prude investigation, wants disciplinary powers

The police accountability board held their monthly meeting Thursday night. Many board members expressed frustration with the attorney general’s decision to not indict the officers involved in Daniel Prude’s encounter.

The police accountability board was created to have the power to discipline officers, but a judge later ruled against giving the board that power. Many board members believe the decision in the Prude case shows why the board should be able to discipline officers.

Memorial service Friday to honor fallen National Guard members

 A memorial service is planned for Friday to honor the three National Guard soldiers who died last month after a helicopter crash in Mendon.

The service — which is not open to the public — will start at 2 p.m. at the Army Aviation Support Facility. The facility is where two of the three pilots worked full-time and where unit Soldiers spend a majority of their time, conducting aircraft maintenance, training and flight operations, according to the National Guard.

COVID-19 relief package hangs in the balance as lawmakers stay along party lines

 The clock is ticking for Congress as the next COVID-19 relief package hangs in the balance.

“I hope Congress passes the American rescue plan, which I’ve been pushing,” President Joe Biden said.

The president remains hopeful his $1.9-trillion American Rescue Plan will make it to his desk.

US carries out airstrikes against Iranian-backed militia facilities in Syria

President Joe Biden on Thursday directed U.S. military air strikes in eastern Syria against facilities belonging to what the Pentagon said were Iran-backed militia, in a calibrated response to rocket attacks against U.S. targets in Iraq.

The strikes, which were first reported by Reuters, appeared to be limited in scope, potentially lowering the risk of escalation.

Best Buy cut 5,000 jobs despite soaring sales during pandemic

Best Buy said Thursday that it laid off 5,000 full-time store workers earlier this month, even as the company’s sales soared during the pandemic as homebound people bought laptops, TVs and other gadgets.

The company said it cut the jobs because more shoppers are choosing to buy online instead of coming inside its stores.

A mister no more: Mr. Potato Head goes gender neutral

Mr. Potato Head is no longer a mister.

Hasbro, the company that’s made the potato-shaped plastic toy for nearly 70 years, is giving the spud a gender neutral new name: Potato Head. The change will appear on boxes this year.

New York launches ID verification tool for unemployment fraud

 Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a new tool to verify identification to fight identity theft-based unemployment fraud. The Department of Labor (DOL) says using will also speed-up claims processing to give out benefits more efficiently.

The new web resource,, will help New Yorkers filing genuine claims get their money faster.

Weather forecast: A sunny, beautiful late February day

Temperatures drop down into the 20s to start Friday, but ample sunshine will help temperatures climb to around 40°. Some parts of the Genesee Valley may even be well into the lower 40s with nearly full sun. The heating of the land may be sufficient to trigger the spring lake breeze circulation dropping temperatures near the Lake Ontario shore It will be a nice way to finish off the last work week of February.

A warm front approaches along a large and developing storm system Friday night and Saturday. This will bring snow and rain showers for the first part of Saturday. A weaker boundary will keep the chances for precipitation around through the afternoon, but they will be spotty at best. Sunday looks to feature increasing chances for a few showers, but may be the drier of the two weekend days with milder temperatures continuing near 50°. Our rollercoaster of temperatures treks on as we trend colder with temperatures in the 30s and 40s through next week.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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