In less than a week’s time, America has witnessed — or turned a blind eye to — three different public executions of unarmed Black people as the troubling trend shows no signs of ending. The most recent instance came Monday night when a police officer in Texas killed a woman who didn’t appear to pose any significant physical threat to him seconds after she screamed out, “I’m pregnant!” The officer shot Pamela Turner, a grandmother, five times at very close range in an apartment complex parking lot.
The Baytown Police Department responded in kind by seeming to blame Turner for her own death, alleging she was grabbing the officer’s Taser, which, even if true, should obviously not have called for lethal force to be used by someone who has, in theory, been trained to de-escalate such situations without using a gun.
Earlier that day, the NYPD officer who used an illegal and banned chokehold to kill Eric Garner in a death recorded on video was finally beginning his administrative trial to determine if he should be fired. It took place nearly five years after Daniel Pantaleo killed Garner. Despite video evidence, a grand jury declined to indict Pantaleo, who has enjoyed job security as well as a significant salary raise since he killed Garner. The NYPD also recently determined Garner did not die from being choked, although the entire world saw the video of Pantaleo choking Garner.
Rewind just six days earlier and a white woman in Georgia who witnessed a driver commit a hit and run decided to chase the culprit, block him with her own car and shoot him to death. Kenneth Herring was 62 when he was executed by Hannah Payne, a 21-year-old vigilante who was ultimately charged with murder. According to her lawyer, she was simply trying to be a good Samaritan by following and confronting Herring about something the Clayton County Police Department described as a minor fender bender.
While those two examples were not related, they were linked to what seems to be an increasingly brazen attitude of superiority by non-Black people toward Black folks. Perhaps even more troubling was how even when charged with a crime, many of the accused folks who appeared to take the law into their own hands end up being found not guilty.
That was also true this past week again when it was revealed that law enforcement had concealed critical evidence surrounding two major deaths in police custody. A report from the 2009 Oscar Grant police shooting was released last weekend and showed that the officer involved lied about the series of events that led to the killing. It was also revealed last week that cell phone footage filmed by Sandra Bland during her violent arrest in 2015 for a simple traffic violation contradicted that officer’s claims that he feared for his life.
In other words, the people who are killing or contributing to the deaths of Black people are seemingly emboldened by the good chance they won’t have to pay for their deadly actions.
That was true in Pittsburgh earlier this year, when former officer Michael Rosfeld was acquitted for shooting 13-year-old Antwon Rose in the back. Video footage showed Rosefeld shooting as Rose fled, showing the officer was not facing any imminent threat of danger when he discharged his service weapon. Still, a jury agreed that he feared for his life.
But in Minneapolis, where former officer Mohamed Noor, a Black Somali American, was recently found guilty for killing a white woman in a similar manner, those same rules that Rosefeld enjoyed were not applied.
Meanwhile, the public executions of Black people keep happening. We’ve seen it in Charlotte as well as in Louisiana, with both happening in April. We saw it in Dallas this past September. The list of fatal police shootings of Black people, most of the time unarmed, continues to grow without any indication that would ease up anytime soon.
The trend isn’t a coincidence, either, according to a report from the Washington Post last year.
‘[U]nlike President Barack Obama, Trump isn’t interested in police reform. The Obama administration oversaw a significant reduction in federal incarceration, scaled back federal drug prosecutions and went further than any other modern White House in its efforts to reform local police departments,” Wesley Lowery wrote at the time. “Trump, by contrast, has encouraged officers to rough up ‘thugs’ they take into custody, telling an audience of officers [in 2017], ‘Don’t be too nice.’”
If this past week was any indication, it would appear that police and citizens alike have heeded the president’s calls, and then some.
76 Black Men And Boys Killed By Police
1. Ariane McCreeSource:The Herald/YouTube 1 of 76
2. Terrance Franklin2 of 76
3. Miles HallSource:KRON4 3 of 76
4. Darius TarverSource:S. Lee Merritt 4 of 76
5. William Green5 of 76
6. Samuel David Mallard, 196 of 76
7. Kwame "KK" Jones, 17Source:facebook 7 of 76
8. De’von Bailey, 198 of 76
9. Christopher Whitfield, 319 of 76
10. Anthony Hill, 2610 of 76
11. De'Von Bailey, 1911 of 76
12. Eric Logan, 5412 of 76
13. Jamarion Robinson, 2613 of 76
14. Gregory Hill Jr., 3014 of 76
15. JaQuavion Slaton, 2015 of 76
16. Ryan Twyman, 2416 of 76
17. Brandon Webber, 2017 of 76
18. Jimmy Atchison, 2118 of 76
19. Willie McCoy, 2019 of 76
20. Emantic "EJ" Fitzgerald Bradford Jr., 2120 of 76
21. D’ettrick Griffin, 1821 of 76
22. Jemel Roberson, 26Source:false 22 of 76
23. DeAndre Ballard, 23Source:false 23 of 76
24. Botham Shem Jean, 26Source:false 24 of 76
25. Robert Lawrence White, 41Source:false 25 of 76
26. Anthony Lamar Smith, 24Source:Getty 26 of 76
27. Ramarley Graham, 18Source:Getty 27 of 76
28. Manuel Loggins Jr., 31Source:Getty 28 of 76
29. Trayvon Martin, 17Source:Getty 29 of 76
30. Wendell Allen, 20Source:Getty 30 of 76
31. Kendrec McDade, 19Source:Getty 31 of 76
32. Larry Jackson Jr., 32Source:Getty 32 of 76
33. Jonathan Ferrell, 24Source:Getty 33 of 76
34. Jordan Baker, 26Source:Getty 34 of 76
35. Victor White lll, 22Source:Getty 35 of 76
36. Dontre Hamilton, 31Source:Getty 36 of 76
37. Eric Garner, 43Source:Getty 37 of 76
38. John Crawford lll, 22Source:Getty 38 of 76
39. Michael Brown, 18Source:Getty 39 of 76
40. Ezell Ford, 25Source:Getty 40 of 76
41. Dante Parker, 36Source:Getty 41 of 76
42. Kajieme Powell, 25Source:Getty 42 of 76
43. Laquan McDonald, 17Source:Getty 43 of 76
44. Akai Gurley, 28Source:Getty 44 of 76
45. Tamir Rice, 12Source:Getty 45 of 76
46. Rumain Brisbon, 34Source:Getty 46 of 76
47. Jerame Reid, 36Source:Getty 47 of 76
48. Charly Keunang, 43Source:Getty 48 of 76
49. Tony Robinson, 19Source:Getty 49 of 76
50. Walter Scott, 50Source:Getty 50 of 76
51. Freddie Gray, 25Source:Getty 51 of 76
52. Brendon Glenn, 29Source:Getty 52 of 76
53. Samuel DuBose, 43Source:Getty 53 of 76
54. Christian Taylor, 19Source:Getty 54 of 76
55. Jamar Clark, 24Source:Getty 55 of 76
56. Mario Woods, 26Source:Getty 56 of 76
57. Quintonio LeGrier, 19Source:Getty 57 of 76
58. Gregory Gunn, 58Source:Getty 58 of 76
59. Akiel Denkins, 24Source:Getty 59 of 76
60. Alton Sterling, 37Source:Getty 60 of 76
61. Philando Castile, 32Source:Getty 61 of 76
62. Terrence Sterling, 31Source:Getty 62 of 76
63. Terence Crutcher, 40Source:Getty 63 of 76
64. Keith Lamont Scott, 43Source:Getty 64 of 76
65. Alfred Olango, 38Source:Getty 65 of 76
66. Jordan Edwards, 15Source:Getty 66 of 76
67. Stephon Clark, 22Source:false 67 of 76
68. Danny Ray Thomas, 34Source:false 68 of 76
69. DeJuan Guillory, 27Source:false 69 of 76
70. Patrick Harmon, 5070 of 76
71. Jonathan Hart, 2171 of 76
72. Maurice Granton, 2472 of 76
73. Julius Johnson, 2373 of 76
74. Jamee Johnson, 22Source:S. Lee Merritt 74 of 76
75. Michael Dean, 28Source:S. Lee Merritt 75 of 76
Public Executions Of Black People Are Showing No Signs Of Ending was originally published on newsone.com