Justice

CNN Legal Analyst Erupts over Police Racism: "This is the Hazard of Being a Black Person in America Today"

October 27th 2014

By:
ATTN: Staff

In the latest series of dubious police actions, the Hammond, Indiana Police recently tasered a man, Jamal Jones, for not producing a drivers license at a routine traffic stop. Jones explained he did not have ID because he recently got a ticket. In response,the officers drew their guns at him, while his girlfriend and their two children were in the car, and eventually smashed his window and tasered him for resisting arrest. 

Jones and his girlfriend are now suing the Hammond Police Department for abuse of power. “They had no probable cause, one, to even ask Jamal to get out of the car, or two, to engage in excessive force in tasering and arresting him,” their attorney, Dana Kurtz, stated. 

The full video can be viewed here:

 

 

CNN recently covered the case and a panel discussion got emotional when legal analyst Sonny Hostin argued with her colleague whether race was a factor in it. 

“This family was tortured for over 13 minutes," Hostin said. "Those children were traumatized. And guess what? The law as it stands right now probably protects the police officers’ actions. And as a woman of color, I don’t know what to do! Because this could happen to me, this could happen to my child, this could happen to my father, this could happen to my husband. What do we do about the inherent racism over and over and over again in these United States during these traffic stops?!”

The video is here:

 

 

According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Justice Statistics, black drivers are twice as likely as white drivers to be arrested during a traffic stop. A 2005 study from Florida State University also found that white police officers "were statistically more likely to let armed white suspects slip while shooting unarmed black suspects." The National Black Police Association suggests that diversifying police forces from top to bottom is the best way to enhance racial sensitivity and prevent tense situations like Jones'. As we learned in Ferguson, Missouri, there were only three black officers on their 53-member force-- roughly 6% of the police in a town that’s over 60% black.