Saturday, January 17, 2009
To be honest, I wanted an explanation to present itself. I wanted ex-transit officer Johannes Mehserle to have had some reason for shooting Oscar Grant. Something. ANYTHING to justify pulling his gun out and firing the shot that ended that young man's life.
But as we all know, my eyes were seeing quite clearly.
There was nothing wrong with any of the cell phone videos.
The same thoughts flood through my mind every time I watch the video.
A young black man was shot and killed.
A young black man was shot in the back and killed.
A young black man was restrained and lain on his back by police officers and killed.
A young black man was restrained, lain on his back by police officers, and one of the police officers shot him in the back and killed him.
And now, a mother is left without her son and a tired community picks up its burdens once again and heads out to battle. But, as I try to digest this whole thing one thought keeps floating back through my mind.
What if there hadn't been any cell phones around?
Consider these facts
- The California Supreme Court has held that displinary and misconduct records of police officers are sealed from media and public scrutiny - See Copley Press, Inc vs. Superior Court
- Statements to internal affairs investigators can't be used against a cop in criminal or civil proceedings.
- We are all aware that cops stick together and will rarely go across the line to blow the whistle on another officer.