When we first moved to Virginia, I heard about a police shooting in our community from the EMT who responded to the scene. The black person who was shot in the back, made the unfortunate choice to try and rob a house and then kill the K9 dog who was tracking him. The dead dog got more press than anyone else attached to the incident. The criminal didn’t die, but he was paralyzed for life and though I’ve lost track of that case, I’m pretty sure we taxpayers are now paying for his incarceration and medical bills.
“Blacks are about 12 percent of the US population. But 41 percent of UNARMED people killed by police.”
This was the Tweet I woke up to this morning from Nate Silver referencing the South Carolina murder of a black man running away from a policeman. Was he stopped because of his tail light, was there really a struggle over a taser, or was he shot in the back because he was guilty of driving a Mercedes while black?
Ten years ago, I remember thinking that NJ/NY police would never shoot someone in the back. Was I naive? I thought Amadou Diallo was an aberration, a one-off. http://criminaldefense.homestead.com/diallo.html
I’ve been laid low by a spring virus courtesy of my sweet grandson. Between naps, and a runny nose, I heard that the police chief in SC is calling for more body cams on police officers. Let’s face it, if that guy didn’t whip out his smart phone to record the latest shooting, we would never have heard of Walter Scott, a 50 year old father. That officer would not have been arrested. And technology trumps justice again.
But technology, body cams are not the answer. If you belong to a race that is 3 times more likely to be killed by a cop; a race the DOJ says one of every three men can expect to spend time in jail; a race that is 60% of the prison population, akin to apartheid in our country, the facts are in. The Ferguson factor is real. Michael Brown at least wasn’t shot in the back. That is cold southern comfort.