Does police criminality transcend race?

February 14, 2023

Evidence that the issue of police criminality transcends race

Reason recently shared a few disturbing stories that relate to the recent murder of Tyre Nichols in Memphis. See what you think of these incidents…

Two cops stole $225,000 while executing a search warrant. Because of the Court-created (not the congress-created) doctrine of Qualified Immunity, they could not be sued for the harm they caused.

Did the cops steal money because they were racist?

Consider the case of officer Bau Tran, who shot O’Shea Terry. Terry attempted to flee a routine traffic stop. Office Trau shot Terry five times, killing him. Did Terry’s crime really deserve the death penalty? No jury ever got to decide that question, and the victim’s family never got to seek compensation because the doctrine of Qualified Immunity prevented Trau from being sued.

Did Trau murder Terry because he hates black people, or simply because he thought he could pump bullets into anyone who disobeyed his orders?

In 2014, Deputy Sheriff Matthew Vickers tried to murder a friendly family dog while pursuing a fugitive that had fled into the family’s backyard. The dog was doing nothing menacing but Vickers decided to kill it anyway. Alas, he missed and hit a ten-year-old child instead. Qualified Immunity prevents the family from seeking damages.

Did Vickers want to kill the friendly dog because he was racist?

Now we have the case of Tyre Nichols, a black man who was beaten to death by five black Memphis cops. The issue of police murdering citizens has always been depicted as a matter of race and racism. But…

Police criminality is a problem that transcends race

The Tyre Nichols case demonstrates that police criminality transcends race. The other cases we just referenced indicate that police criminality transcends race. And, unfortunately, we could go on and on with examples.

The Tyre Nichols case is also another tragic example of why we’re trying to pass the Ending Qualified Immunity Act. Police need to know that they risk paying some kind of price for behaviors that, if done by anyone else, would be considered criminal.

Please help make this happen! Join The 300 for this campaign, if you have not done so already.

End Qualified Immunity

Set your own agenda,

Jim Babka, President
Agenda Setters by Downsize DC

Today’s Action: The Ending Qualified Immunity Act


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