Unleashing The Police? No Federal Oversight, No Justice, Activists Warn

By | April 12, 2017

After Mike Brown was fatally shot and killed by former police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, in the summer of 2014, came a string of similar, frequent incidents between police and unarmed Black men and women over the next two years.

In 2015 alone, police were responsible for the deaths of 102 unarmed Black people, a rate of nearly two every week; five times the rate of unarmed Whites. This number could potentially be higher due to under-reporting by police, another chronic and systemic problem in departments across the country.

However, the most staggering statistic of all is that of the 102 cases of police involved deaths of unarmed Black people, only 10 resulted in officers being charged with a crime. Only two officers were convicted. Just one was forced to serve jail time, and he was allowed to serve his yearlong sentence exclusively on the weekends.

These sobering statistics have become the foundation for a call for nationwide police reform. High-profile and deadly cases like the incidents involving Mike Brown in Ferguson, Tamir Rice, John Crawford and Sam DuBose in Ohio, Sandra Bland in Texas, Walter Scott in South Carolina, Terence Crutcher in Oklahoma, LaQuan McDonald in Chicago, and Freddie Gray in Baltimore, shined a light on systemic racial bias within police departments. The incidents forced the Obama administration to embrace calls for much needed “police reform.” (The Final Call)

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