The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

City, state officials put spotlight on policing cases

by Rachel Lynn Aldrich
Posted 6/25/20, 03:10 pm

A police chief in Arizona resigned, a New York City officer faces charges, and a 2019 case out of Colorado received new scrutiny. Local police departments and governments this week responded to accusations of police brutality with renewed transparency.

What happened in those communities? Police Chief Chris Magnus in Tucson, Ariz., offered to resign after the death of Carlos Ingram-Lopez became public. The mayor did not accept his resignation. On April 21, the 27-year-old died after police officers handcuffed and held him face down. Magnus said three officers involved resigned for violating department policy and acknowledged they didn’t disclose the death promptly. The New York City Police Department said Officer David Afanador, 39, was arrested on Thursday on charges of strangulation and attempted strangulation after using what appeared to be a chokehold last weekend. And Colorado Gov. Jared Polis said on Wednesday that his office was looking into 2019 the death of Elijah McClain in Aurora, Colo. The 23-year-old African American man died after a struggle with police, during which officers used a chokehold on him.

Dig deeper: Read Harvest Prude’s report in The Stew about the debate in Congress over police reform.

Editor’s note: WORLD has corrected this report to note that Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus offered to resign.


Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Rachel Lynn Aldrich

Rachel is an assistant editor for WORLD Digital. She is a Patrick Henry College and World Journalism Institute graduate. Rachel resides with her husband in Wheaton, Ill.

Read more from this writer

Comments

You must be a WORLD Member and logged in to the website to comment.
  • Janet B
    Posted: Sat, 06/27/2020 12:12 pm

    You will be doing a story on the incident in Tampa that was a set-up to get police to a mob scene so they could be attacked, right?

  •  West Coast Gramma's picture
    West Coast Gramma
    Posted: Sun, 06/28/2020 11:24 am

    I don't believe anyone is saying that bad things don't also happen to on-duty police. Nor is anyone saying that victims of lethal police brutality are perfect, or even 100% law abiding. Nor is anyone saying that all police are bad and that good police don't abound. Nor is anyone saying that all protesters have 100% pure motives. What the spotlight is correctly showing right now is a culture of policing that leads to violent, aggressive confrontations that kill people unnecessarily and unjustly. Call it a subculture if you will, but it's definitely prevalent. I found this feature story (whose link is given below) very enlightening, especially the statistic, "Since 2015, police in the US have not gone more than two days without fatally shooting someone." Also, on the "very same day" that "Minneapolis police killed George Floyd--officers shot and killed at least five other men across the country. They included a decorated Marine veteran and two warehouse workers." The articles provide biographies of each of these men, as well as details of their killings. Not all these men were perfect. Some needed help in a mental health crisis. But the kind of help they needed wasn't to be shot and killed.

    On The Day George Floyd Died, Police Across The US Shot And Killed At Least Five Other Men https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/melissasegura/george-floyd-other-men-killed-by-police

    Sometimes, American institutions do go awry and need to be corrected. One such time was the FBI under J Edgar Hoover. Does that mean that everything the FBI did during those years was bad? Of course not. Nevertheless, the country was correct in spotlighting the evil within that institution in order that the injustices would cease. The KKK is another example of a societal scourge that needed to be spotlighted and rooted out. Legalized school segration and all other forms of legalized segregation were evils in America that needed to be spotlighted and protested in order for just change to occur. NOW is the season for America to look at its police and police departments across the nation. The facts are staring us right in the face and have been for years, when not swept under the carpet. There is an infestation of agressive, confrontational violence plaguing many, not all, police departments and police in America. It's a fact that Black men are targeted disproportionately to their population. Let's pull together on admitting that something bad is going on, let's work together on changing that violent, often racist police culture, and let's make America the beautiful place it can be for ALL her citizens.

     

     

     

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Sun, 06/28/2020 10:58 pm

    "What the spotlight is correctly showing right now is a culture of policing that leads to violent, aggressive confrontations that kill people unnecessarily and unjustly. Call it a subculture if you will, but it's definitely prevalent."

    I don't buy your basic premise. The reality is that there exists an element in society that are dangerous and are only kept at bay by the brute force of the law. They are the kind who will shoot dead a police officer without remorse or brutally knock over an elderly woman for pleasure. Every day police officers have to deal with this sub-element and oftentimes have to make split second decisions that could well mean their life or death. It isn't a fun job but these men and women put their lives on the line so we the public don't have to face this violent sub-element, where we go through our normal lives in peace and freedom. Being blind to this, many well meaning citizens are buying the lie that there is a huge problem with the police.

     

    Every day police have to go to domestic violence situations, drug related calls, an other dangerous situations which many times result in violence and even gun fire. There is a probability that people will die in these situations and we should not be surprised when they do happen. Our current system investigates these cases and deals with it in a just manner. Are there some bad calls? Certainly but we cannot expect a perfect system nor should we automatically assume the police are at fault - they are just doing their jobs. When there are bad police, they should be removed but police shouldn't be removed purely due to political pressure. The process needs to be fair and just. The job of a police officer isn't easy where they don't get much pay and every day police with children hug them not knowing if this may be their day where they don't come home due to a bullet from an inflamed youth who bought into the lie of BLM, or some other thug. 
     

    At the link below we see one hero who died in the line of duty. He is a Navajo Native American man named Michael Lee who recently gave his life in the line of duty. While the rest of the nation was sheltered due to COVID-19 this officer was out protecting the public and he contacted the virus and recently died. There is a poem in the "reflections section" that shows the difficulties of being a police officer. Please read it and possibly review the many other police officers who have died in the line of duty.  Rather than raging at the police, we should honor men like Michael Lee who regularly die so that we can have peace, security and freedom:

    https://www.odmp.org/officer/24715-police-officer-michael-lee

    Here is another young expectant father tragically taken away from his family in the line of duty as a police officer.

    https://www.odmp.org/officer/24695-sergeant-damon-gutzwiller

    The BLM movement's goal is primarily political where they don't care about justice - though they use people who do. They are attempting to feed the lie that we have a broken and racist system so they can remake our system by using civil unrest to transform our country. This is especially dangerous for Christians for they have pointed their violence against the Church. 

  • RC
    Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 09:27 am

    When it comes to the numbers, 9 out of 10 black murders are black on black. The issue with the police is symptomatic of a problem that is much deeper. It is not as much racial issue as it is social / economic one. Any young man (Black, White, Asian, Native American, Hispanic, etc.) who is brought up without a good father figure is, more than likely going to end up on the wrong side of the law and not becoming a productive citizen.  Our government, and society, has constantly failed to encourage “family” by misled social assistance programs and we, as a society, are paying the price for it.         

  •  West Coast Gramma's picture
    West Coast Gramma
    Posted: Sun, 06/28/2020 11:49 pm

    Cyborg3: Somehow I don't think you heard what I was saying, since you neglected all my caveats and replied to points I never made.

    Also, you wrote, "The reality is that there exists an element in society that are dangerous and are only kept at bay by the brute force of the law. They are the kind who will shoot dead a police officer without remorse or brutally knock over an elderly woman for pleasure. Every day police officers have to deal with this sub-element..." Did you even read the link I posted? And after reading the biographies of the 5 American citizens who were shot, you find that language of yours applicable to them? Really! And here I was beginning to hope that America will reform and move on to a much brighter future than what we have now--for everyone.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Cyborg3
    Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 03:37 am

    I read your caveats and understood your post. I read the article at BuzzFeed and don't agree with the slant. Police have to protect their lives for if they don't, then they will be the victim.  So do you agree with BLM that we are safer if we get rid of the police? Is this the "much brighter future" that you refer? I hope not! You certainly didn't seem to have any empathy for the police killed that I linked to.  What about their families and children? What about the pregnant wife?  

  • HANNAH.
    Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 11:40 am

    Cyborg3, three points based on my also reading the caveats, understanding the post, and viewing the BuzzFeed article:
    1. I recently ran into a family friend who is a professor at a Minnesota university. He expects a drop in enrollment for the law enforcement program.
    2. In many years of experience with a family member, I’m still learning which battles to engage and when to preserve peace by letting her have the last word.
    3. I think you have attempted a certain verse in Proverbs 26. See number 2 above.

  •  West Coast Gramma's picture
    West Coast Gramma
    Posted: Mon, 06/29/2020 04:35 am

    Cyborg, all I'm saying is that many people are getting killed who aren't the "bad guys" whom you describe. I'm not saying those people don't exist. The kinds of people in many instances who have been in the news are family folk like the police themselves. They have perhaps made some mistakes and wound up in a tight place. People like Breonna Taylor, who did nothing at all except sleep in her own bed, George Floyd who possibly committed a $20 crime, and Rayshard Brooks, a guy who got drunk and blocked a fast food line--none of these folk are the wanton police killers you describe. They did not deserve to die. Each of them was reacting defensively to a dangerous situation which had spun out of control. There has to be a middle ground. There has to be more than one way of dealing with 911 or other calls. It's time we put our creative, collective heads together and figure this thing out. Don't you feel any of the collective pain at all behind the protests? Let's give our public caregivers, including 911 dispatchers, social workers, chaplains, and police a few more tools to work with besides guns.

ADVERTISEMENT