Justice

Slain Baton Rouge Officer Had Called For Healing

July 18th 2016

By:
Dave Fonseca

The tension between black Americans and law enforcement had weighed heavily on Montrell Jackson, one of three Baton Rouge Police Department officers shot to death on Sunday by Gavin Long, who officials suspect was a lone gunman.

Prior to his death, Jackson posted on Facebook about that tension and the conflicts that accompany being a black police officer in America.

"I swear to God I love this city but I wonder if this city loves me," Jackson wrote. "In uniform, I get nasty hateful looks and out of uniform, some consider me a threat."

Jackson's message was posted on July 8, one day after a sniper killed five police officers in Dallas, Texas. The Dallas killings followed the on-camera killings of black men Alton Sterling and Philando Castile by white police officers. Sterling's death was at the hands of Baton Rouge Police Department, prompting concerns of backlash against the department.

The Baton Rouge shooter, Gavin Long, who reportedly lived in Kansas City, Missouri, previously posted a YouTube video about the need to "fight back," and he claimed that Micah Johnson, the Dallas shooter, was "one of us," according to CNN.

Jackson's Facebook struck a chord with those trying make sense of his killing.

Jackson leaves behind a wife and a four-month-old son. Along with Jackson, the two other officers killed in the attack included Matthew Gerald, of the Baton Rouge Police Department, and Brad Garafola, of the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s office, according to NBC News. Three other officers were wounded.