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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

On the Next Episode of The Lead

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national lead

December 2nd, 2014
05:43 PM ET

Police investigating if Michael Brown's stepfather incited riot

(CNN) - Authorities are investigating whether Michael Brown's stepfather intended to incite a riot last week when he urged a crowd in Ferguson, Missouri, to "Burn this bitch down" after the grand jury's decision was announced, the city's police chief said Tuesday.

No charges have been filed against Louis Head in the incident, but police have interviewed people who know Head and who were with him November 24, the day a prosecutor announced that Officer Darren Wilson (who has since resigned) would not be indicted in the August 9 shooting of Michael Brown, Police Chief Tom Jackson said.

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world lead

December 1st, 2014
05:21 PM ET

Airstrikes mark shift in coalition focus to ISIS 'capital'

(CNN) - The U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS in Syria has stepped up its attacks on the militant Islamist group's de facto capital, with 30 airstrikes targeting Raqqa overnight, the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Sunday.

Separately, another opposition activist group based in Raqqa reported that about 30 airstrikes by "the crusader alliance" targeted areas northwest of the city.

Previously, coalition strikes have primarily targeted Kobani, near the Turkey border. The attacks in Raqqa mark an increase in coalition activity there.

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national lead

November 20th, 2014
05:23 PM ET

Police, FBI on alert for Ferguson reaction

Ferguson, Missouri (CNN) - A tense Ferguson is awaiting to hear whether a St. Louis County grand jury believes Officer Darren Wilson should stand trial in the fatal shooting of unarmed teen Michael Brown.

The grand jury hearing evidence plans to meet Friday for what might be its final session.

A decision on whether to charge Wilson could come the same day, law enforcement officials briefed on the plans said.

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national lead

October 20th, 2014
06:21 PM ET

Indiana authorities identify man held after 7 bodies found

(CNN) - An Indiana man told police he "messed up" by killing a woman in Hammond, then came clean, leading them to several more bodies in nearby Gary, Hammond Police Chief John Doughty said Monday.

Doughty stopped short of calling Darren Deon Vann a suspected serial killer, but left the possibility open if police are able to connect the convicted sex offender to any of the six women found in Gary over the weekend.

"If we directly attach him to it, we can make that assumption," he said, adding that Vann's statements lead authorities to believe there are "possible other victims." Some cases may date back 20 years, based on what Vann has told police, the chief said.

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national lead

September 30th, 2014
06:41 PM ET

Troubling series of failures by Secret Service

U.S. Secret Service Director Julia Pierson called an incident in which a man scaled a fence and entered the White House "unacceptable" and told a congressional committee Tuesday that she takes "full responsibility."

Omar Gonzalez, a 42-year-old knife-wielding Iraq war veteran, entered an unlocked door to the executive mansion, Pierson told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which grilled her on the September 19 security breach.

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