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.
82 Black Men And Boys Killed By Police
1. Natosha “Tony” McDade1 of 82
2. George Floyd2 of 82
3. Yassin Mohamed3 of 82
4. Finan H. Berhe4 of 82
5. Sean ReedSource:Twitter 5 of 82
6. Steven Demarco TaylorSource:S. Lee Merritt 6 of 82
7. Ariane McCreeSource:The Herald/YouTube 7 of 82
8. Terrance Franklin8 of 82
9. Miles HallSource:KRON4 9 of 82
10. Darius TarverSource:S. Lee Merritt 10 of 82
11. William Green11 of 82
12. Samuel David Mallard, 1912 of 82
13. Kwame "KK" Jones, 17Source:facebook 13 of 82
14. De’von Bailey, 1914 of 82
15. Christopher Whitfield, 3115 of 82
16. Anthony Hill, 2616 of 82
17. De'Von Bailey, 1917 of 82
18. Eric Logan, 5418 of 82
19. Jamarion Robinson, 2619 of 82
20. Gregory Hill Jr., 3020 of 82
21. JaQuavion Slaton, 2021 of 82
22. Ryan Twyman, 2422 of 82
23. Brandon Webber, 2023 of 82
24. Jimmy Atchison, 2124 of 82
25. Willie McCoy, 2025 of 82
26. Emantic "EJ" Fitzgerald Bradford Jr., 2126 of 82
27. D’ettrick Griffin, 1827 of 82
28. Jemel Roberson, 26Source:false 28 of 82
29. DeAndre Ballard, 23Source:false 29 of 82
30. Botham Shem Jean, 26Source:false 30 of 82
31. Robert Lawrence White, 41Source:false 31 of 82
32. Anthony Lamar Smith, 24Source:Getty 32 of 82
33. Ramarley Graham, 18Source:Getty 33 of 82
34. Manuel Loggins Jr., 31Source:Getty 34 of 82
35. Trayvon Martin, 17Source:Getty 35 of 82
36. Wendell Allen, 20Source:Getty 36 of 82
37. Kendrec McDade, 19Source:Getty 37 of 82
38. Larry Jackson Jr., 32Source:Getty 38 of 82
39. Jonathan Ferrell, 24Source:Getty 39 of 82
40. Jordan Baker, 26Source:Getty 40 of 82
41. Victor White lll, 22Source:Getty 41 of 82
42. Dontre Hamilton, 31Source:Getty 42 of 82
43. Eric Garner, 43Source:Getty 43 of 82
44. John Crawford lll, 22Source:Getty 44 of 82
45. Michael Brown, 18Source:Getty 45 of 82
46. Ezell Ford, 25Source:Getty 46 of 82
47. Dante Parker, 36Source:Getty 47 of 82
48. Kajieme Powell, 25Source:Getty 48 of 82
49. Laquan McDonald, 17Source:Getty 49 of 82
50. Akai Gurley, 28Source:Getty 50 of 82
51. Tamir Rice, 12Source:Getty 51 of 82
52. Rumain Brisbon, 34Source:Getty 52 of 82
53. Jerame Reid, 36Source:Getty 53 of 82
54. Charly Keunang, 43Source:Getty 54 of 82
55. Tony Robinson, 19Source:Getty 55 of 82
56. Walter Scott, 50Source:Getty 56 of 82
57. Freddie Gray, 25Source:Getty 57 of 82
58. Brendon Glenn, 29Source:Getty 58 of 82
59. Samuel DuBose, 43Source:Getty 59 of 82
60. Christian Taylor, 19Source:Getty 60 of 82
61. Jamar Clark, 24Source:Getty 61 of 82
62. Mario Woods, 26Source:Getty 62 of 82
63. Quintonio LeGrier, 19Source:Getty 63 of 82
64. Gregory Gunn, 58Source:Getty 64 of 82
65. Akiel Denkins, 24Source:Getty 65 of 82
66. Alton Sterling, 37Source:Getty 66 of 82
67. Philando Castile, 32Source:Getty 67 of 82
68. Terrence Sterling, 31Source:Getty 68 of 82
69. Terence Crutcher, 40Source:Getty 69 of 82
70. Keith Lamont Scott, 43Source:Getty 70 of 82
71. Alfred Olango, 38Source:Getty 71 of 82
72. Jordan Edwards, 15Source:Getty 72 of 82
73. Stephon Clark, 22Source:false 73 of 82
74. Danny Ray Thomas, 34Source:false 74 of 82
75. DeJuan Guillory, 27Source:false 75 of 82
76. Patrick Harmon, 5076 of 82
77. Jonathan Hart, 2177 of 82
78. Maurice Granton, 2478 of 82
79. Julius Johnson, 2379 of 82
80. Jamee Johnson, 22Source:S. Lee Merritt 80 of 82
81. Michael Dean, 28Source:S. Lee Merritt 81 of 82
Public Executions Of Black People Are Showing No Signs Of Ending was originally published on newsone.com