The National Bar Association has had enough of reports of racially charged police brutality and recently announced its plans to file open records requests in several U.S. cities in order to take a closer look at instances of alleged police misconduct.
Pamela Meanes, the president of the group of predominantly Black lawyers and judges, said police brutality is the new civil rights issue of this era and something has to be done to put an end to it.
“If we don’t see this issue, then we are not carrying out our mission, which is to protect the civil and political entities of all,” Meanes said, according to the Indianapolis Recorder.
The group released a press release about its filing in order to explain what its plan of action is and what its intentions are.
The press release stated that the open records request will seek to obtain information about how many people have been killed by police, how many have been racially profiled, how many were wrongfully arrested, how many were injured during the arrest or while in police custody and general data about the crime scenes and the charges against the suspects.
The request will also ask for any “video and photographic evidence related to any alleged and/or proven misconduct by current or former employees.”
Of course, this type of investigation would be impossible to complete without focusing on specific areas.
The NBA selected 25 cities to focus on.
According to the Indianapolis Recorder, the NBA selected the cities based on the size of their Black population and how many instances of alleged police brutality had been reported.
In the past few months alone, social media has helped shed light on several alleged cases of police brutality that could have flown under the radar otherwise.
Cellphone footage of Eric Garner, the New York father who had a past of selling loose cigarettes, being placed in an illegal chokehold by New York City police hit the Web in July.
Garner died during the arrest.
Attention was called to a father in an Ohio Wal-Mart who was shot by police in August after someone in the store called authorities to report that the man had a gun.
John Crawford III, who was 22 years old, was carrying a toy gun that he picked up while in the store.
Then there was the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, which sent social media and the entire country ablaze with chants of “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot.”
Brown was the 18-year-old high school graduate from Ferguson, Missouri, who was fatally shot multiple times by police officer Darren Wilson, despite claims that Brown had his hands up in surrender at the time of the shooting.
The NBA hopes its requests will lead to justice for at least some the many Black families who suffered from similar losses of their loved ones.