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New Indiana bill gives police control of access to body cam and dashboard videos

A new bill in Indiana could put a dent on police accountability through police recordings.

House Bill 1019, authored by Republican Rep. Kevin Mahan, seeks to restrict public records requests for law enforcement recording by allowing police departments to decide whether video footage of officers—including body cameras and dashboard cameras—will be released. If police deny access, the next step would be to sue the agency.

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Hits and misses of President Obama’s final State of the Union address

Tuesday night was President Barack Obama’s last State of the Union.

Appropriate for the moment, his speech was retrospective, examining the work he was able to accomplish, and some of his shortcomings, over the past eight years.

CNN video screenshot

ICYMI: Charles Blow Shuts It Down for Tamir Rice at CNN

“If they had taken one moment to look and survey the scene, they would have seen that none of the kids were running away because none of them felt that they were in any danger,” Blow said on CNN Tonight. “Before you shoot somebody, you need to take a breath to say, ‘Let me assess the situation, let me not jump out with my hand on the trigger and shoot somebody at point-blank.’”

#BlackKidsMatter: McKinney, Texas and the Truth About Your Black Friends

McKinney

By Jay Dodd

News broke over the weekend of a Dallas suburb police officer terrorizing a group of Black and Brown kids attending a swimming party in an affluent neighborhood’s community pool. The graphic video depicts Corporal Eric Casebolt dragging a Black girl across a yard, shoving her to the ground and waving his gun at several unarmed teens. The community pool was the location for an end-of-year celebration, of which many had guest passes. In other words, they were invited to this space to celebrate with their friends and ended up face to face with state terror because, Black.

While pundits and racists muse whether the officer had probable cause; all of those opinions are trash. In what universe does an police officer need to press both his knees into the back of an unarmed child wearing a bikini? Moreover, why were the police called in the first place?

The McKinney Police department reported:

“The initial call came in as a disturbance involving multiple juveniles at the location, who do not live in the area or have permission to be there, refusing to leave. McKinney Police received several additional calls related to this incident advising that juveniles were now actively fighting.”

However, teens shared that the fight began between adults slinging racial slurs at the Black teens enjoying the pool; dismissing them back to “Section 8 [public] housing”. So when the cops arrive panic ensued.

Hmm, you call police on a bunch of unarmed Black teens and they freak out and run away? Go figure.

While many of the White teens present at the time attempted to advocate for the Black kids and themselves, this incident is a wake up call for any “white ally” who thinks simply having Black friends is enough. Black kids aren’t afforded childhoods. Our boys will never just be boys. Our girls aren’t allowed to be carefree. Black kids are read as terror. Even the white boy who filmed it is quoted saying “[The cop] didn’t even look at me. It was kind of like I was invisible.”

We have seen state violence take children before. We have mourned Aiyana Jones and Tamir Rice. We have mourned Cameron Tillman and VonDerrit Myers Jr. Anti-black state terror doesn’t see age; it doesn’t afford Black children their youth.

And seemingly for the first time ever, no Black lives were lost in this instance of state violence.