More than a dozen members of the Congressional Black Caucus marched to the Department of Justice on Thursday to hand-deliver a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch demanding federal action on the epidemic of police killings in America. The CBC is also insisting that Charlotte police “absolutely” must release video of the fatal police shooting that took the life of Keith Lamont Scott.
I believe that the video should be released right away because when they’re not, distrust builds in the community; distrust about altering them, distrust about whether they’re going to get to know the truth,” said Texas Democratic Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson.
“The killing of unarmed black men and women by police is a crisis,” said Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.).
In the letter, the CBC calls on Lynch to “aggressively pursue investigations, indictments, and prosecutions through the Office of Civil Rights against any and all law enforcement officers who harm or kill innocent, unarmed black men, women, and children.”
Put your hands up. I tell everybody in my neighborhood, you stop, put your hands up so that everybody can see where they are,” Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY) said during a press conference. “And yet, we still have somebody that’s dead. We need the Attorney General to act. We need her to act now. And the members of the Congressional Black Caucus are not going to sit back and do nothing.”
The CBC also called on Congress to take action.
“We are going to make sure that we push for legislation so we’re going to be calling on [House Speaker] Paul Ryan to come up with some legislation that we can work on and put forward to change this. But in the meanwhile, we want the attorney general to utilize her powers,” said Meeks.
The issue of fatal police shootings has come to the forefront again as racial tensions have boiled over following the killings of Tyre King, a teenager armed with only a BB gun; Terence Crutcher, who was shot while his hands were in the air after his car broke down; and Keith Lamont Scott, who was reading a book in his car while waiting for his son to get home from school.
According to Politico, “The members didn’t actually walk all the way from the Capitol to DOJ headquarters, which is about a mile away. Instead, lawmakers boarded a bus at the Capitol and disembarked about two blocks from DOJ, walking the rest of the way.”
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