Teacher helps students come to terms with the police murder of a classmate’s father

terence crutcher
Source: scarymommy.com
On 21 September, Rebecca Lee shared her experience on Facebook of helping the children in her school process and come to terms with the shooting death by a police officer, of Terence Crutcher. Crutcher was the father of a student at the Tulsa, Oklahoma school where Rebecca Lee is a literacy coach and writing teacher and ten other students at the school were related to him.

Crutcher was shot after his car stalled in the road and arriving police decided to brutalize and kill him, instead of offer him assistance. The white, woman police officer who murdered Mr. Crutcher has been charged with manslaughter. read more

In Irvington & Jersey City police, fire & community join the Running Man Challenge!

Irvington Fire Fighters dancing
Source: Irvington Running Man Challenge video
Irvington’s video kicks off with a stunning vocal performance by Mayor Vaughn’s secretary and features crowd scenes of city employees rocking the beat and even breakdancing and performing acrobatic stunts.

In Jersey City’s video a police official orders officers to, “Get in there and dance. Have fun!” Even the K-9 unit obeys, dancing at the Hudson River’s edge with New York City for a backdrop. Scenes filmed around the city show its breadth of ethnic and arts diversity. read more

President, Press and Governor speak out: police brutality must be condemned and controlled

Alton Sterling
Alton Sterling Source: YouTube
No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as any manner of thy friends or of thine own were; any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

– John Donne, Devotions upon Emergent Occasions Meditation XVII

This week saw the police murder father of five children Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana not long before school lunch supervisor and student mentor Philando Castile was murdered by a policeman near St. Paul, Minnesota.

New York Times writer Michael Eric Dyson offers a sizzling condemnation of white people for failing to hold brutal police accountable for killing people of color. Because ultimately, they don’t want to see that their greed for privilege has created and supports the social environment in which it is OK for this to happen. What a read: read more

Court ruling: New Jersey police must turn over dashcam video on request

Dashcams
Source: Wikipedia
The New Jersey Law Journal reports on dashcam ruling handed down 30 June 2016. It’s a win for justice and respectful police conduct:

New Jersey appeals court on June 30 ruled that police video recordings taken from dashboard cameras are documents that must be released under the state’s Open Public Records Act.

Hurrah! I’m happy with this news. NJLJ reports that court case was filed by “open-government activist John Paff.” Thanks for the great work, John.

Click-it or Ticket enforcement campaigns begin nationwide on May 23

Click it or ticket bannerTeaneck, NJ and other police departments around the country will be looking harder during the national Click It or Ticket enforcement drive to see if you’re wearing your seatbelt while driving. The campaign dates are May 23 to June 5 2016 … Forewarned is forearmed. Be careful out there!

Suspended Wyckoff NJ Police Chief stands by statement that racial profiling is necessary

Chief Ben Fox letter to officers
Source: NJ.com via the ACLU
New Jersey Police Chief Benjamin Fox was suspended on 22 March 2016 for the statements made in a 2014 email to his staff which specifically – and in precise language – instructs Wyckoff officers to continue to “check out suspicious black people in white neighborhoods.”

But Fox claims that his statements aren’t racist and don’t promote racial profiling. Read the NJ.com article, let me know what you think.

Know your rights if you’re stopped by police while driving

rights on a car police stop
Source: shared by Bryan Silva on Facebook

You can print this statement out and hold it up for the officer to read if you are stopped by the police while driving. We should exercise our rights. Because if we don’t use them, we may lose them.

Thanks to Bryan Silva via Ari Wei for the share

23 yo is handcuffed, shot, sat on by police until he becomes late


Sad day for the United States as a young Los Angeles man is shamefully murdered by two police who shoot him repeatedly after handcuffing him, then sit on him while he writhes in pain crying for help until he ascends to meet his ancestors. In his lust to kill 23 year old Noel Aguilar, one of the policeman shoots his partner.

A bystander captured the whole episode on video but be warned: it is graphic, sad and extremely disturbing.

May the blessings of God cover us all in holy light and peace. Please Lord, bring comfort to the soul and family of Noel and enfold them in your loving embrace. With God’s help, let us act to end the violence raging out of control in the beautiful world that is His gift to us. read more

Release of video showing 17 yo Laquan being killed have Chicago police all jittery

Chi police on high alert pending shooting video release
Facebook post by Cynthia OneDay Flood
Facebook wouldn’t let me share Cynthia Flood‘s post about Chicago police gearing up for a high-alert, increased police presence in readiness for today’s release of the patrol car dashboard cam video footage of 17 year old Laquan McDonald being fatally shot 16 times by a police officer on 20 October 2014. A judge ordered the video to be released by Wednesday.

Poor boy. He was apparently high on PCP but exhibited no violent behaviour.

The officer who mercilessly and without provocation executed Laquan is being charged with murder. I wish for Laquan’s mother, family, friends and community – peace, comfort and healing. read more

Christie vetoed bill requiring police & firemen to live in NJ communities they serve

Newark police
Photo source: unknown photo of Newark Police found via Patch
It’s a sad state of affairs when community servants are “vehemently opposed” to living in the communities they serve. That is nevertheless the case for policemen and firefighters, who consider it a huge win that Christie vetoed the residency requirement bill A4265 that passed both State Senate and Assembly this summer. The bill calls for new hires to live in the town they serve, “for the first 5 years on the job.” The NJ Fraternal Order of Police website states: read more

I can’t stop crying, thinking about police brutalizing girls in classrooms. We must vote.

SC police officer brutalizes student
From video on CNN website
I just read José Luis Vilson’s piece giving his opinion on why adult complicity through inaction – sitting quietly by while big, strong, heavily armed policemen brutalize girls in school classrooms – is inexcusable. And I started crying again. This time I haven’t been able to stop, tears are running down my face as I’m writing.

Edited to add: I just learned that the assault victim is a girl who was recently orphaned.

Where did we go wrong, my friends and neighbors? I want to ask, to scream, to demand answers. How did we get to the point where we not only allow armed law enforcement officers into our children’s schools to serve as para-security guards … but beyond that point, to where we are today: where the same men who shoot pudgy grown men in the back because they failed to pay child support and band together to choke the life right out of a New Yorker for selling loose cigarettes, are let loose in our babies’ classrooms to brutalize, terrorize and humiliate them and after they do haul them off, no doubt, to lock them up in jails or detention schools or juvenile halls – to make them look the wrongdoers. read more

New York Times calls for firing of brutal officer & systemic change to NYPD

James BlakeNot being exactly known as the champion of the average New Yorker makes the New York Times’ scathing editorial calling out the NYPD for brutality all the more remarkable. In an uncommon act of public representation, the NYT Editorial Board calls for the dismissal of the latest officer caught in a brutal and illegal act of racism and demands that systemic changes be made to the police department’s operating policies.

…the New York City police officer who jumped and assaulted an innocent man, James Blake, in Manhattan last Wednesday, has disgraced the department. Commissioner William Bratton and Mayor Bill de Blasio should make an example of him. They should make it clear that his unprovoked aggression — caught by a security camera, so there is no doubt about what he did — reflects everything that causes people to distrust and hate the N.Y.P.D. The officer’s further transgressions — not identifying himself to Mr. Blake, not apologizing, failing to void the arrest in follow-up paperwork — speak to an appalling lack of judgment by someone unfit for the job. read more

Cop openly admits to stopping man for looking him in the eye

FeltonAs soon as he realizes a policeman he passed is tailing him, John Felton starts his camera’s video going. Which makes it all the more incredible when the cop openly tells Felton that the main reason he tailed him looking for a reason to stop him, is that Felton made eye contact with him. Oh boy 🙁

The David Pakman Show offers good coverage and clips from the video.

From the video:

“You’ve been tailing me for how long? You just needed a reason to pull me over,” Felton says. “No disrespect, I don’t have nothing against police officers, but all this sh*t that’s going on now? That’s some scary sh*t. To have a police officer just tail you, and then you pull me over, ’cause you said I didn’t signal — what? Do you know how it looks?” read more

When police become revenue agents to keep towns fiscally solvent

cash-strapped-cityThe community policing model becomes completely distorted when policeman – the civil servants you’re most likely to see and interact with in the course of a normal day – are turned into revenue producing instruments by the cities they work for. When a police officer’s job depends on whether s/he can generate enough revenue to keep his employer out of bankruptcy, a lot of people are going to be unhappy. And some of those unhappy people are going to be people grievously harmed, or excessively fined, for behaviour that shouldn’t be a big deal. read more

Facebook blocks news about Newark’s new civilian police review board

Facebook blocks sharing of civilian police review board signing
Facebook wouldn’t let me share a NJ.com article about Mayor Ras Baraka signing into law Newark’s new civilian police review board. This is what I wrote them:

Racists who rejoice in black and brown men being killed want to block this news from being shared. It’s completely legitimate content posted in a major newspaper about the signing into law of a Newark police review board.

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