Police Kill Unarmed Mentally Ill Black Man As Report Finds Law Enforcement Shootings Reminiscent of Lynchings

Story Transcript

JAISAL NOOR, TRNN: Protest against the killings of unarmed black men are continuing around the country after Alfred Olango was shot and killed near San Diego, California after his sister called police for help.

SPEAKER: They shot him 5 times and he’s mentally challenged. You shoot somebody 5 times [inaud.] you’re not trying to stop him, you’re not trying to help him, you’re trying to kill him.

NOOR: This marks the at least 800th person killed by police this year. A disproportionate number of whom are African American and comes on the heels of a report by UN group calling for reparations for African Americans saying recent police shooting are “reminiscent of the past racial terror of lynchings”.

ZIANNA OLIPHANT: I can’t stand how we are treated. It’s a shame that our fathers and mothers are killed and we can’t even see them anymore. It’s a shame that we have to go to the graveyard and bury them. And we have tears and we shouldn’t have tears.

NOOR: On Tuesday, an unarmed black man was shot and killed by a police officer in El Cajon in southern California on the local police department said, appealing for calm as witnesses and protesters gathered to condemn the killing.

SPEAKER: I’ve seen… hands were up. He was arguing. The cops were trying to get him to lay down. He wouldn’t lay down. As another cop pulls up with his firearm, the cop beside him discharged.”

SPEAKER: “At one point the male rapidly drew an object from his front pants pocket placed both hands together on it and extended it rapidly towards the officer taking what appeared to be a shooting stance putting the object in the officers’ face. At this time one of the officers with the Taser discharged his Taser in an effort to subdue the subject. Simultaneously the officer who had the object pointed at him discharged his firearm striking the male.”

NOOR: the family said they called the police for help 50 minutes before. El Cajon Police Department said no weapon was found on the scene. Police have refused to release footage of the incident but did release a still photo from the video that depicted what appeared to be two officers pointing weapons at an individual who was pointed an object at them.

Again police say no gun was recovered from the scene. Video emerged on social media showing the moments after the incident at the scene. In the video, a woman’s sister is heard saying she called the police.

SPEAKER: The police did it again y’all. They shot another unarmed black person as usual and the lady is saying she called them for help, not to kill her brother and they shot her brother. She’s saying she called the cops to come help her brother and they killed her brother.

NOOR: The death comes less than two weeks after black men in Charlotte, North Carolina and in Tulsa, Oklahoma, were shot dead by police, sparking protests. Other police killings include Tawon Boyd who died after being beaten during police encounter in Baltimore County and the Sept 11 shooting death Terrence Sterling after he allegedly hit a squad car with his motorcycle. Witnesses have disputed the police account.

On Monday, Houston Transit Police released video of an officer beating a homeless man, Darrel Giles at a train station even though it appears he was not resisting arrest. The officer resigned Monday but it is unclear if he’ll face criminal charges.

In Charlotte, mass demonstrations prompted the authorities to impose a state of emergency and eventually release footage of the incident.

The UN Report of the Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent found police killings reminiscent of the racial terror of lynchings.

LAWRENCE BROWN: In many ways a lot of this is very traumatic. I mean you have the situation where these videos come out over and over again. Every year, you can almost anticipate it now here in America. It still hits you as maybe the very first time. It’s just the sense of brutality that are in some of these videos and what happens I think here in America, there’s a history of lynching. 4,000 plus lynchings between 1877 and 1950 according to the equal justice initiative. So some of these videos make me feel like here we go again. It takes me back to Emmett Till. It takes me back to the four little girls in Alabama.

NOOR: And that African Americans are owed reparations.

BROWN: reparations in many ways provides a way of acknowledging the pain that has been caused. You know, I think America needs to go through a process to arrive at reparations. First, there does need to be the acknowledgment that there were 389,000 Africans shipped from the coast of Africa, brought to the United States. There were 1.2 million people of African descent that were shipped to the deep South from the Chesapeake region, Delaware, Virginia, Maryland, and a more Northern area in the United States, to the deep South as cotton production was taking off. The acknowledgment of that white supremacist violence I mentioned earlier with the Ku Klux Klan, the White Knights, and other terrorist groups that were in existence at the time, the acknowledgment of the 4,000-plus lynchings of Jim Crow, the new Jim Crow.

NOOR: The trauma felt by the African American community there, highlighted by the UN report- was reflected in a now viral video of 10 year old Zianna Oliphant speech against police brutality. At the charlotte city council.

OLIPHANT: I come here today to talk about how I feel and I feel like that we are treated differently than other people and I don’t like how we’re treated and just because of our color doesn’t mean anything to me. I believe that we are black people and we shouldn’t have to feel like this. We shouldn’t have to protest because y’all are treating us wrong. We do this because we need to and have rights. I’ve been born and raised in Charlotte and I never felt this way till now and I can’t stand how we’re treated. It’s a shame that our fathers and mothers are killed and we can’t even see them anymore. It’s a shame that we have to go to their graveyards and bury them. And we have tears and we shouldn’t have tears. We need our fathers and mothers to be by our side.

NOOR: From Baltimore, this is Jaisal Noor.

End

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