New training is only a band-aid for police brutality

Monique W. Morris, The Grio | July 27, 2011

The tensions between law enforcement and community are high in cities across the country where there have been a number of police involved shootings this year. The relationship has been strained for decades, where incidents of police brutality, excessive use of force, and other police misconduct have led to a severe breakdown in public confidence in the legitimacy of decisions made by police.

Yesterday, 13-year old Jimmell Cannon, a middle school student athlete, was shot eight times for pointing a BB gun at officers in Chicago. Earlier this month, five police officers stood trial for the fatal shootings of New Orleans residents seeking to cross the Danzinger Bridge after Hurricane Katrina ravaged the city in 2005.

In Miami, outrage over the police involved shootings of seven African-Americans this year has resulted in an investigation by the Department of Justice. Unfortunately, while violent crime rates declined by 5.3 percent last year, the third consecutive annual fall, more stories regarding police involved shootings are making the news.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, communities have continued to grow impatient with law enforcement since the fatal shooting of Oscar Grant. Recently, 19-year-old Kenneth Harding became the third police-involved shooting in two months in the Bayview/Hunters Point area of San Francisco after he allegedly fired at officers before they opened fire on him, sparking outrage among community members.  (Read more)