The shooting death of 18 year old high school student Alan Blueford has sparked outrage and protests in Oakland, CA, with family members and community activists calling for a thorough investigation into the conduct of the Oakland Police Department on the night of the incident.
Alan Blueford was hanging out with two friends on a street corner on May 6th when they were approached by Oakland Police Officers, who allegedly believed that one of them was carrying a concealed weapon. How they determined this by simply looking at them is unclear. A chase ensued and Blueford was shot three times. A police officer sustained a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the foot and was rushed to the hospital.
Police claim to have witnesses to attest to the fact that Blueford brandished a firearm on the night of the shooting, and they point to the fact that Blueford was on probation for felony burglary at the time of the shooting as some sort of justification for their actions.
But the family remains skeptical, alleging that the OPD and the media are trying to assassinate the character of their son. Blueford had a 3.0 GPA and hoped to become an X-ray Technician. The family claims he would never have been carrying or brandishing a handgun.
After the shooting, the family were forced to wait at the precinct for hours before being given any information on their son.
“The Bluefords were also angry that police ignored their requests for information early May 6 as they sat in the department lobby.
‘The anger I feel about the treatment we received and the character assassination of this child is unbearable,’ said Jeralynn Blueford. ‘It’s almost too hard to take.’
Bolton said the chief had apologized for the wait and has directed that a commander be summoned to meet with such families in the future.”
The Bluefords have hired civil rights attorney John Burris to represent them as they seek answers regarding the death of their son. Oakland native and family friend MC Hammer recently spoke out at a rally calling for justice for Alan Blueford.
“Hammer, a well-known rapper, entrepreneur, and actor, spoke at a rally in front of the police station, saying he knew Blueford since he was a child because he was a ‘dear friend of my children.’ ‘The character assassination won’t stand,’ Hammer said. ‘Alan was a good kid.’ The police must be held accountable, he said. ‘How (can) the penalty for fleeing (be) death?'”
For more information, check out the Justice 4 Alan Blueford facebook page.