July 25, 2018
Good evening Florida Atlantic University,
My name is Krystal Francis and I’m the U.S senator and chairman of the capitol police board here in America. For a short time being, I have been given the opportunity to speak with Dr. Vaughn Crichlow who is a professor and a criminal justice researcher here at Florida Atlantic University.
We’ve spoken on important topics regarding law enforcement and what issues involved. The first thing that came to mind was racism in the criminal justice system and especially on police brutality. Being a law enforcement officer was once in some point of time referred to as those who are the peace makers. But now it seems as if police departments all across the United States seem to strive for a plethora of arrests that are unnecessary. As a result, tension stirs among different communities, people can’t put their trust in police officers, and violence has gotten out of context matter with people take matters into their own hands and is harming police officers. Being a law officer is a dangerous field to work in and how in some situations there may need to be some type of excessive force. My subcommittee and I also touched on a certain point that is quite startling but very truthful of how excessive force has gotten out of hand here in the United States.
Furthermore, for those who feel that racism couldn’t have been the factor that leads to excessive force, well think again it’s one of the main factors. In the year 2010 there were approximately 4,763 reports due to police misconduct. Among the victims that related to police brutality were about 6,650 victims who were mostly who were Latinos, African American, and Muslim and mixed race. Of those 6,650 about 347 were fatally shot. The costs of civil judgements and of settlements were about $355,212,800. And 25.8% of the reports were of police misconduct in regards to racism and 59% was police brutality that involved unnecessary excessive force. In a recent study conducted by my subcommittee, Dr.Crichlow and I showed that California was one of the highest states involved in police brutality. The Los Angeles police department is a notorious department especially known for such police misconduct. For example, “Have you ever heard of the Rodney king incident”? Well the significance of this case had paved the way for highlighting how police departments use excessive force in police misconduct cases. An African American man named Rodney kind born April 2, 1965 in the beautiful city of Sacramento in California seemed to always be a troubled person. He dealt with alcoholism and often involved with the law a handful of times. However, little did this man know that this case would become one of the biggest examples in history of racism and police brutality.
In a high speed chase, Rodney king was of course being chased by law enforcement officers from the Los Angeles police department on the 3rd of March in 1991. Finally, when officers caught up to mr.king and were able to stop him, police officers pulled him from the vehicle instead of properly taking him from the car and began to beat him brutally with their batons. Four officers were charged with a criminal offense against mr.king and assault for using their baton. Yet acquitted from all charges due to the understanding that the jury were all Caucasian. This case stirred up so much tension until there were riots breaking out due to the outcome of Rodney king’s case. Citizens were bitten by police dogs, tazered for unnecessarily and a couple more police misconduct was taken place.
As I close, Racism and police brutality seems to be an ongoing issue that is going on in most states. Most of these high populated cities were crime is high tend to be one of other common factors were excessive force used on citizens unnecessary can cause riots and rally’s against certain police departments for pointing fingers at certain communities and assuming that all the minorities are criminals. Now there are some instances were excessive force is necessary in order to protect citizens and officers from a dangerous person which gives officers the right to use the required lethal force. However, excessive force cannot be for every case that goes into account. It is up to me and my subcommittee, but you as the people to vote and demand change instead of rioting. More organizations are being developed as we speak to not only aid those families who’s relative been killed due to gun violence but to better implement programs in certain communities seen as target communities for crime and violence. We as the people cannot expect change overnight but with the help of each other, our law enforcement and our governments, change is bound to begin.
We thank you for your undivided attention, time and support!
U.S Senator Krystal J. Francis