Ethnicity and the Police Part II Police Brutality and Corruption: New Orleans Police Department By Brittany Jackson Staff Writer BATON ROUGE- New Orleans Police Department is known for its harsh brutality, corruption, discrimination, and deadly force. The issue of citizen complaints has been a controversial concern in New Orleans. The complaints of citizens are generally a racial issue. African American civil groups have commanded civilian evaluation as a way of presenting independent assessments of complaints.
Although the New Orleans courts planned to expurgate police corruption and brutality, the unruly behavior has increased. Over the recent years the New Orleans Police Department had a discreditable record for police brutality and many incidents were reported to the department Internal Affairs Division and the Office of Municipal Investigations. Some officers were charged for using excessive force towards victims, sometimes without adequate cause, and some suspects died while in the custody of police. The New Orleans Police Department has a history of police brutality cases including the case of Robert Davis.
Robert Davis, a retired elementary school teacher and a resident of New Orleans was detained, arrested, and beaten by four white police officers on October 9, 2005 on notion of public intoxication. Davis was 64 years old at the time of the incident and was charged with public intoxication, resisting arrest, battery, and public intimidation which he pled not guilty to all charges. Upon hearing the charges Davis stated, “I haven’t had a drink in twenty five years. ” The officers were charged with battery and the use of severe force.
All officers were released on bond after making an appearance before the judge, pleading not guilty. African American Police Chief Warren Riley stated that he did not believe race was a issue in the beating. Charges against Davis were dropped in April 2006. Robert Evangelist and Lance Schilling were fired for their involvement in the beating. Racial profiling inexplicably targets the African American community for no known investigations and enforcement which leads to a hindrance in community policing endeavors. These actions cause law enforcement to lose trust among the people they are to protect and serve.
Many people depend on the police to protect them from violence and exhibit fairness and equality to all communities, yet many people live in fear. I never been in a situation that involved the New Orleans Police department but in my research I find the department to very corrupt. Many of the officers are respectable individuals but the dishonorable officers ruin the reputation for all. Many of the suspects that they victimize are Black individuals who are males. Even though the Police Chief stated that the incident of Robert Davis wasn’t a race issue, I’m for certain that it was.
It shouldn’t take four police officers to apprehend one suspect and to make matters worse, two of the officers were pinning Mr. Davis down to accommodate the beating. More people should stand up for what they believe in to prevent racism from happening. In New Orleans, most citizens of the African American community live in fear because they know how corrupt the New Orleans Police Department is. If more people come together and protest about racism, brutality, and corruption a change will be brought forth. The New Orleans Police Department has always been known for their corruptive acts.
Many of the officers target the African American communities and victimized individual for their own personal reasons. It is real clear the corruption of the police department is only getting worst being that no one of higher authority isn’t taking on an improved way to handle these violent acts. New Orleans has the most brutality cases in the United States due ethnicity issues, and discrimination. African American citizens of New Orleans can’t depend on the police to protect them if they don’t trust the police or have fear.