In this informative clip, Rachel Maddow breaks down the tragic episodes of extrajudicial police killings that have been occurring with an alarming frequency in the past year. A pattern in the use of lethal force among American police officers and their handling of African-American suspects has come to light, and the details are shocking.
Maddow talks us through the heartbreaking cases of:
Michael Brown of Ferguson, Missouri, who was shot and killed by a police officer.
Eric Garner, of Staten Island, who was choked to death in a headlock by police officers for selling loose cigarettes.
Tamir Rice, a child of twelve, who was shot in a park by Cleveland police for waving a toy handgun.
Sarreshbay Patel, of Alabama, who was slammed to the ground by police officers so hard they left him paralyzed.
Antonio Zambrano-Montez, who was shot seventeen times in the back for throwing rocks.
Floyd Dent, of Michigan, who was beaten so badly during a traffic stop that he was left with a cracked eye socket and broken ribs.
Eric Harris, of Tulsa, Missouri, who was shot by a “reserve deputy” with no police training.
and Walter Scott, who was murdered during a traffic stop by a South Carolina policeman.
It is a blight on our democracy and our entire legal system for our police officers to feel they have the power to summarily execute suspects with no trial. The Bill of Rights guarantees a swift and fair trial for our criminals, and the sheer brutality of these stories are very alarming indications that the culture of violence present in our police forces has spiraled far out of control.
Watch it here:
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.