COPS OUT OF BLACK, LATIN, POOR COMMUNITIES ACROSS THE U.S.
Action marks revival of Detroit movement triggered by Lamar Grable’s 1996 murder by Eugene Brown, Vicki Yost
“This is a fight we all better fight”–Pastor McCorry, Dayton, Ohio
By Diane Bukowski
October 2, 2016
VOD: before and since this Sept. 24 action, held in Detroit, cops have continued their deadly rampage across the U.S. Three brutal executions of Black men happened in California alone within two days during the past week. A man and two teens died in Taylor and Livonia, Michigan after police chases. Videos and links to those stories are below this one.
DETROIT – As the U.S. rises up against the genocidal slaughter of Blacks by police from Charlotte, S.C. to Columbus, Ohio, to Tulsa, Arizona, family members from Detroit, New York City, Dayton, Ohio, Kenosha, Illinois and elsewhere blocked Woodward Avenue for an hour Sept. 24 to demand justice for their loved ones’ deaths.
Drivers honked their horns in solidarity as the families chanted and released white balloons heavenward, with the names of Adaisha Miller, Terrance Kellom, Aiyana Jones, Lamar Grable, Kimoni “Kodak” Davis, Justus Howell, Malcolm Ferguson, John Collado and Emmet Till printed across them or displayed on t-shirts and signs.
“Only in policing can you kill a person one day, take a vacation, come back on restricted duty, get a raise and retire with a large pension,” Pastor Jerome McCorry of the Faith and Justice Social Alliance of Dayton, Ohio said. “All you did was kill somebody who didn’t look like you. The same madness is going on with mass incarceration.”
Pastor McCorry and P.O.S.T (Protect Our Stolen Treasures), headed by Yolanda McNair, based in Detroit, and members of the Original Detroit Coalition against Police Brutality led the militant action. They sponsored held a day-long conference at St. Matthew’s and St. Joseph’s Church on Woodward and Clairmount to solidify their ties with each other and reach out to others.
At an afternoon panel, family members told heart-wrenching stories.
“Adaisha was my jewel,” said her mother Yolanda McNair. “She left a little six-year-old daughter. She loved kids, she loved life, and became a massage therapist. She was killed one day before her 25th birthday by Detroit cop Isaac Parrish III.”
Parrish claimed his gun, which he was carrying in a side holster while he danced with Adaisha during a party involving drinking went off accidentally July 8, 2012. The Detroit police covered up for him, smearing Adaisha’s name. He was never charged, not even with reckless endangerment. He was not tested for alcohol or drugs.
“I have a tattoo to remember Adaisha, and my grandkids come up and kiss it,” McNair said. “Her death did not just affect me, it affected everyone who loved her. She deserved to get old, fall in love, and have kids. Now, I’m proud to be the leader of this group. I’m going to fight not just for Adaisha but for everybody. If it happened to us, it can happen to you.”
Kevin Kellom, who attended the event with his wife Yvette Johnson, remembered the Detroit and federal police execution of his son Kevin Kellom, 18, on April 27, 2015.
“I called him Tee-Tee,” Kellom said. “I always told him, when you bring kids into the world, you have to take care of them. He had a warrant out, but I told the police,‘ I will bring him in the day after his daughter is born.’ ”
The day they killed him, four I.C.E. agents, two DEA agents, and three Detroit police came to my door. I wouldn’t let them in without a warrant, but they snatched the door out of my hand. I heard them upstairs telling Tee-Tee, ‘Freeze or I’ll blow your brains out.’
“Then they brought him downstairs, two cops in front and two in back. His hands were in his pockets, but then he put his arms out to me, calling ‘Dad.’ They shot him eight times, then one put his foot on his shoulder and one kicked him, and another turned him over, and shot him again.”
Police claimed Kellom threatened them with a hammer, but Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said during a press conference announcing that no charges against the cops would be brought, that no fingerprints were found on the hammer.
Kellom broke down, blaming himself for not raising his son better, but Aaron Grable, brother of Lamar Grable, told him, “It ain’t about what you didn’t do, it’s about what they did. I was the bad kid in my family, and Lamar was the good kid, but they killed him anyway.”
Kimberly Davis, mother of Kimoni “Kodak” Davis, said he was killed during a car chase in a speed trap set up by Hanging Rock, Ohio police, who said he was going 11 miles over the speed limit as he was coming back home on an Ohio highway. His 17-year-old friend Airshawn Warren of W. Virginia also died. White Hanging Rock cop David Caruso, who had participated in four such other chases, drove the lead car.
State Highway Patrol photographs of the freeway embankment Davis drove up on before flying over three lanes and crashing in a gulley show tracks from two sets of cars, indicating that police may have followed and pushed his car over the road.
“He made me a grandmother at the age of 14,” Davis said. “Now his baby is the only part of him I have left. He had just called me to say, ‘Ma, I’m on my way home, don’t worry about me.’ Instead he went home to Our Lord because he was a brown face in southern Ohio. My son lived one day, and he died in my arms in a hospital in West Virginia. He was not even recognizable. His grandson tells me how much he misses his father. It’s not a good feeling to know they are killing us. Many cops are half-crazy. They don’t tell on each other, but then they get mad because we don’t snitch in the hood.”
Arnetta Grable, Sr. recalled, “I remember like yesterday the first time I set eyes on my first baby Lamar, and I remember like yesterday the last time I saw him, dead in the hospital with 50 police cars outside. Cop Eugene Brown claimed Lamar shot him, and they told me Brown was ‘clinging to life’ at the same hospital. It was all lies. Brown and Vicki Yost were chasing a stocky, dark-skinned man who was 5’6.” My son was 6’3,” light-skinned with red hair, and he only weighed 120 lbs. Brown just decided to execute him after he turned him over and realized his mistake.”
As explained in the previous story on the 20th anniversary commemoration of Lamar’s death, the truth came out during a civil trial, “Lamar’s day in court,” that his mother fought seven years to bring about. It resulted in the U.S. Department of Justice intervention into the Detroit Police Department on consent decrees lasting over 10 years.
“They tried to get my mother to settle for $1 million,” Aaron Grable said. “But I told her, ‘You can’t miss what you never had.’”
Mertilla Jones, grandmother of Aiyana Jones, 7 when she was viciously shot to death in the head with an AK-47 by Detroit cop Joseph Weekley, leading a military-style assault team on May 16, 2010, also spoke. Her family has gone through unspeakable harassment, frame-ups, and torture since they lost their beautiful little girl.
Jones was sleeping on a living-room couch with her favorite grandchild when police broke in. They had no search warrant for the family’s home, only for an upper flat above their address. Detroit cop Joseph Weekley went free after several mistrials deliberately caused by Judge Cynthia Gray Hathaway in league with the prosecution and defense. He is now back on the force. His brother Nate Weekley was recently disciplined for posting on Facebook that Black Lives Matter is a terrorist group.
“I saw the light go out of her eyes,” Jones said. “Aiyana was born July 20, 2002 and put in my arms by her maternal grandmother July 21, 2002. I speak for Mertilla Jones, and I speak for Aiyana Jones. They said my family were gang members, but we are survivors of police murder and torture. They locked up Aiyana’s father, my son Charles, for 40-60 years, and every man in my family with the name Jones. I raised six Black men, and have over 30 grandbabies, most of them boys. I am fighting for all of us. I am here to support all these families.”
LaToya Howell of Kenosha, Illinois, said that when she was told her 17-year-old son Justus Howell had been shot to death by police, “I left this planet. My soul left out of my body. We are the ones that go to the ends of the earth for our children, we teach them everything. You are not going to lie on my baby, he didn’t have a gun. They showed the world the tape. You thought you could take my baby’s life, but it will not be without a fight. If just a fraction of people that have the ears and soul that you all have would join forces, we can stop these killings.”
News reports said Howell had been shot twice in the back by Kenosha police as he ran from them, in early April 2015. Protests followed. At one held in Zion, Ill. People carried signs declaring “Blood on their badges,” “Stand up 4 Justus,” “Black Power: Our children are the power,” “Hands up, don’t shoot,” and “Black Lives Matter,” according to the Kenosha News.
Ericka Gordon-Taylor, a cousin of Emmett Till, lynched in the South in 1955, attended the conference with her mother, both wearing T-Shirts commemorating the 14-year-old child and his mother Mamie Mobley, who insisted on an open casket funeral to show the world how vicious racists had savaged her child’s face and body.
They had just returned from the grand opening of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African-American History, which featured the first display of that casket. Till was exhumed in 2005, and could not be re-buried in the same casket.
“That casket symbolizes that all of our families and loved ones are still being slaughtered, 61 years later,” Gordon-Taylor said. “We still see the stain of Emmett Till’s blood on the fabric of America.”
Also in attendance were Joshua Lopez of New York City, whose uncle John Collado was murdered by an undercover cop in 2011 as he sought to break up what he thought was a neighborhood fight, but instead was the cop beating another man. Lopez has been very active since, traveling across the country to numerous rallies.
He was joined by Juanita Young of New York City, whose son Malcolm Ferguson was shot and killed March 1, 2000 in the Bronx, by plainclothes officer Louis Rivera. Like the family of Lamar Grable, she fought in court for years and in June 2007 a jury awarded her $10.5 million for the killing of her son, which was later reduced on appeal. She and her family have been subjected to constant police raids and brutality since that time, like the family of Mertilla Jones. Young leads the organizing of national events like the one in Detroit Sept. 24.
Pastor McCorry summed up the conference in tears, saying, “This is my family. I love everyone sitting at this table. I refuse to ever sell you out.
“This is a fight we all better fight. It is as much about white folks as Black folks. A boat cannot rise from the flood waters until the people at the bottom are saved.”
Videos and stories on recent killings by police across the U.S. and Michigan.
REGINALD THOMAS, FATHER OF 8, KILLED BY PASADENA, CA COPS Sept. 30, MASS PROTESTS FOLLOW
EL CAJON, CA. COPS KILL ALFRED OLANGO SEPT. 29, HUNDREDS PROTEST FOR DAYS
CARNELL SNELL, JR. 18 KILLED BY LA COPS SEPT. 30, PROTESTS ERUPT
DASHCAM VIDEO SHOWS COPS TRIED TO RUN OVER ROBERT MANN BEFORE SHOOTING HIM 14 TIMES IN SACRAMENTO, CA JULY 11
LOUISIANA COPS KILL 6-YR-OLD AUTISTIC BOY, WOUND FATHER
FLAT ROCK, MI MAN ROBERT PARENT SHOT TO DEATH BY STATE TROOPERS AFTER CHASE SEPT. 3O.
FAMILY FILES $10 MILLION LAWSUIT IN KILLING OF DETROIT WOMAN JANET WILSON BY DEARBORN COPS
BELOW: VOD stories related to families at Sept. 24 conference (many had multiple stories, but only one is cited for sake of space. To see others, put the victim’s name in the VOD search engine at upper right.)
http://voiceofdetroit.net/2016/01/06/boycott-dearborn-charge-white-cop-who-executed-detroits-kevin-matthews-unarmed-harmless/ (to this day, Prosecutor Kym Worthy has not named or charged the white Dearborn cop who killed Kevin Matthews just before last Christmas),
To read listing of Detroiters killed by police since 1992, click on http://voiceofdetroit.net/wp-content/uploads/DETROITERS-KILLED-BY-POLICE-SINCE-1992-edited-2.pdf