May 14, 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sara Mokuria, 214-454-3980, firstname.lastname@example.org
John Fullinwider, 214-683-2493, email@example.com
Collette Flanagan- firstname.lastname@example.org
Mothers Against Police Brutality -A Baytown, Texas, police officer, confronted a woman walking near her apartment and fatally shot her 5 times after a brief struggle on Monday night. A bystander’s video captured the homicide.
“The video shows clearly that the officer escalated the situation,” said Collette Flanagan, who founded Mothers Against Police Brutality after her unarmed son, Clinton Allen, was killed by Dallas police in 2013. “He starts to manhandle an unarmed woman who is simply walking near her home. When he can’t subdue her, he goes immediately to his Taser.”
Use of force is typically governed by a “continuum of force” protocol that starts with verbal commands to a suspect or person of interest, then step-by-step proceeds to more severe uses of force only when the suspect uses increased force. Use of a taser immediately following verbal commands is not standard protocol in most departments.
“This killing of an unarmed black woman,” said Sara Mokuria, MAPB co-founder, “wasunjust, unnecessary, and wholly preventable.”
Police Chief Steve Dorris quickly defended the officer’s use of deadly force, saying theofficer was justified in killing the woman because after he had Tased her, she was ableto take his Taser weapon away. Dorris told CBS News, “Our officer got Tased with his own Taser.”
The officer involved was working alone, reportedly on a routine patrol, when he confronted Ms. Turner with whom according to Dorris in the Houston Chronicle, the officer ‘had prior dealings.” Dorris said the officer knew she “had outstanding warrants.”
This officer initiated a “stop-and-frisk” style encounter with a woman who was not committing any crime in order to – serve a warrant? There is no exchange where he states he is stopping her because he has a warrant to arrest her. The officer, when his initial takedown failed, should have stepped back, and called for back-up. Officers working alone are 4 times more likely to use force than those working in pairs or teams.Even if she had walked away from him, he knew where she lived and could have easily followed up to serve an outstanding warrant.
“This officer initiated the encounter for no reason, and he escalated the encounter for no reason,” Flanagan. “And after he created a crisis moment, he reached for his gun. This is bad, unprofessional policing, and it led to a woman’s death.”
Click here to read MAPB’s complete 9 steps to Fair and Just Policing.
About Mothers Against Police Brutality
Mothers Against Police Brutality (MAPB) Mothers Against Police Brutality (MAPB) is an emerging, Dallas-based multi-generational, multi-racial, and multi-ethnic coalition uniting people nationally, from all walks of life, to hold law enforcement agencies more accountable. Collette Flanagan founded MAPB in 2013 after her son, Clinton Allen, an unarmed young man in custody, was shot to death by a Dallas police officer. MAPB works for an immediate end to the use of deadly force against unarmed persons; for changes in the overall use of excessive and deadly force to stop unnecessary injury and death; for changes in the treatment of mentally ill persons by police; for assistance to the families of the victims of police violence; for transparency and objectivity in the investigations of police misconduct; and for other changes in police policies and procedures to protect the lives of civilians, with a particular focus on protecting the lives of African American and Latino youth. Transforming grief into determination, Flanagan and MAPB are leading the charge to change deadly force policy in Dallas and throughout the U.S., to support families who have lost loved ones to police violence, and to help restore trust between the police and the communities they are sworn to serve and protect.