Friday, April 10, 2015

DWB Is Not A "Crime Strategy"

South Carolina Police Shooting Seen as Crime Strategy Gone Awry:

The aggressive tactics by North Charleston’s mostly white police force, including frequent stops of drivers and pedestrians for minor violations and an increased police presence in high-crime, mostly black areas, have led to a decrease in violent crime.
First, the premise of that statement is wrong. Violent crime is down everywhere in the U.S. from 2007 until 2013, including those departments where aggressive "zero-tolerance" policing is not used. There is no correlation whatsoever between N. Charleston's crime drop and the aggressive police tactics.

That said...
But to many here, the strategy came at a high cost and provides a disturbing context to the police shooting here last weekend that has set off outrage throughout South Carolina and across the country. A white police officer was shown on a bystander’s video shooting and killing an unarmed black man after he fled from a traffic stop for a broken taillight on Saturday. The man, Walter L. Scott, 50, was shot in the back by the officer, Michael T. Slager, 33, who has been charged with murder and whose dismissal was announced by city officials on Wednesday.

Aside from the furor over Mr. Scott’s death, North Charleston has been something of a window onto many of the policing issues playing out nationally.
You can watch the "dash cam" video of the initial traffic stop here, but I'll leave it to you decide whether Scott's "tail light being out" was the primary motivation for the stop, or whether a black man driving a Mercedes (read: "it must be stolen") was.

Regardless, what transpired next is truly horrific. I've watched a lot of grotesque things on the internet over the years (from beheadings to Lana Del Rey videos), but am not sure I've ever seen anything so grisly and grotesque and Walter Scott's execution

And that's what it was...a gangland execution, shot eight times in the back as he tried to flee. 

Yes, fleeing or evading the police is a crime, but no one deserves to be gunned down over a broken tail light, or worse, for DWB (driving while black).

Funny, on the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, how little has changed in this county on the issues of race.

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