Video From Activists Puts Police On Notice In Advance Of Jamar Clark Announcement

Activists calling for “Justice 4 Jamar” issued their own video on the eve of an expected decision whether to prosecute the Minneapolis police officers who shot and killed Jamar Clark.

The response was prompted by a warning video from Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau that activists called “inflammatory.”

Minneapolis NAACP President Nekima Levy-Pounds and Pastor Danny Givens, both leaders in the coalition that have protested the killing, recall the Minneapolis police history of paying out millions to settle police misconduct cases, but failing to “effectively discipline police who engage in misconduct.”

“For decades, the black community has tolerates abuse at the hands of MPD, but those days have now come to an end. We will not tolerate police engaging in excessive force against our community,” says Levy-Pounds in the video.

Givens says as Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman prepares to announce his decision whether to prosecute the police officers “our community is making plans to engage in nonviolent, peaceful protest and to exercise our rights to free speech.”

A FaceBook post from Black Lives Matter says it is planning a rally at 6pm in Elliot Park whichever day Freeman makes his announcement.

Video and Transcript

Transcript:

Nekima Levy-Pounds:
The Minneapolis Police Department has a long history of violating the rights of residents of the City of Minneapolis.

Over the last decade alone, the city of Minneapolis has paid out nearly $20 million dollars to settle police misconduct cases. Despite these staggering settlement amounts, the city has failed to effectively discipline police who engage in misconduct.

Pastor Danny Givens:
We believe that a violent police culture that lacks accountability, puts the lives of all citizens in jeopardy.

Last November, the shooting death of Jamar Clark by MPD led to an 18 day occupation outside the 4th precinct.

Levy-Pounds:
Despite the protests being largely peaceful and nonviolent, we were met by a militarized police force in riot gear. We were sprayed with tear gas and mace without warning, police pointed guns at protesters, including children, and some of were even struck by rubber bullets.

And both women and children, alike, were even physically assaulted by those sworn to protect and serve. Protecting the safety of the African American community has never been a priority for the Minneapolis Department.

For decades, the black community has tolerates abuse at the hands of MPD, but those days have now come to an end. We will not tolerate police engaging in excessive force against our community.

Givens:
We will not tolerate the criminalization of the African American community. As we await the Hennepin County attorney’s decision on whether to charge the officers who killed Jamar Clark, our community is making plans to engage in nonviolent, peaceful protest and to exercise our rights to free speech.

We expect MPD to treat our community with dignity and respect. We expect MPD to exercise restraint and to refrain from abuse in their response to protesters.
The MPD, for once, must strike a balance between protecting our first Amendment right to free speech and protecting public safety.

Michael McIntee

Michael McIntee is a former network TV news executive with more than 30 years of broadcasting experience. He began his broadcasting career at the University of Minnesota's student radio station. He is an expert producer, writer, video editor who has a fondness for new technology but denies that he is a geek. More about Michael McIntee »

4 thoughts on “Video From Activists Puts Police On Notice In Advance Of Jamar Clark Announcement

  1. Why do they say “our community” over and over? Thats the problem. It seems to me blacks are trying to seperate themselves from the rest of society

  2. That’s the problem? Yea…the problem is black people referring to their neighborhoods as communities….separate themselves from society? Wow dude. You are tragically foolish and ignorant.

  3. There is no doubt that the Minneapolis police force has needed drastic improvement in its tactics and in how it deals with citizens – it has been a problem for years. Having said that, District Attorney Mike Freeman reached the only reasonable conclusion possible in light of the physical and forensic evidence, and in light of the eyewitness testimony and statements. Jamar Clark was clearly not handcuffed at any time, including the moment when he was shot, and he did reach and get a hold of one of the officer’s guns. Under Minnesota law, the officers’ actions, tragic though they may be, were justified.

    There are lessons for everyone here. The groups seeking justice for Jamar Clark should accept the DA’s conclusions and admit their error. The Minneapolis police need to take a long, hard look at how they deal with and relate to the community. They need work hard to build stronger relationships with all citizens, and stop behaving – as they often do – like a military force of brute thugs. I’m glad I live in St. Paul, where the police behave professionally and have strong ties to the community and all its citizens.

  4. They’ve been told they are “alone” in this struggle against tyranny, leading to a feeling of isolation and helplessness, and this couldnt be further from the truth. Im not trying to invalidate their feelings, because I believe they truly feel this way…and for a good reason, but theyve never been alone. There have always been whites and people outside their community willing to help somewhere. I feel bad for them because the movements are being exploited from so many different sides, that they cant see the light at the end of the tunnel. Blame the media and politicians.