Five months into the year and 2017 is already on pace to be one of the deadliest years measured for the number of people killed by American police and the crisis shows no signs of slowing down.
At least 492 people have lost their lives at the hands of American police so far this year and as the number grows, I’ve noticed many extremely disturbing trends.
At least three different unarmed 15-year-old black boys have been shot and killed by law enforcement in this past month alone. As far back as I can research, we’ve never had a single month in this country’s history where three different unarmed black boys this young have been shot and killed by police in three different incidents in the same month.
And, in each incident, what we have seen is the police make drastic changes to their initial narratives of why they were forced to shoot and kill these young boys.
When 15-year-old Jordan Edwards was recently shot and killed by a police officer in suburban Dallas, the initial narrative was that the car he was a passenger attempted to mow down the officer who repeatedly fired his rifle into the vehicle. Upon reviewing the body camera footage of the incident, the Balch Springs Police Chief then openly stated that the initial narrative was a complete fabrication and proceeded to fire the officer who was later charged with murder.
Since Jordan was killed by police, two more unarmed young black boys have been shot and killed by law enforcement in Connecticut and California. Neither of their cases have received the attention or coverage that they deserve.
I continue to be convinced that some of the problem is that we are so bombarded by bad news every single day of the week, from the levels and levels of Trump’s foolishness to the repeated attacks by white supremacists all over the country, that it’s sincerely hard for any of us to even keep track of just how awful the crisis of police violence is right now.
Just like police did with Jordan Edwards, the initial reports from law enforcement about the recent shooting deaths of Jayson Negron in Connecticut and Darius Smith of California were full of absolutely wild inaccuracies.
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