A piece by the Christian Science Monitor digs into the question and includes a quote by Rev. Lee Wesley: "Policemen are going to have to get out of their cars, walk the street, and have a conversation with the black guy on the corner â€“ the black guy who has his pants hanging down â€“ and get to know him as an individual, not as a stereotype. Until we get those types of relationships going, we're never going to get our community moving forward."
TBR will soon hold meetings about community policing to address "how we employ people in our law enforcement agencies, how we vet them" and more. Together Baton Rouge also plans to address this issue with all mayoral candidates running this fall.Read more
Over 300 leaders of Together Baton Rouge called for both law enforcement and economic reforms at a luncheon meeting held at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church. The call to action occurred after breakout sessions in which leaders substantively listened to each other. Said Rev. Lee Wesley, "It is not our goal to return to where we were before Alton Sterling was shot. It is not our goal to get back to business as usual. It is our goal to move forward."Read more
Shortly after leaders of Together Baton Rouge called on the Justice Department to widen the scope of its investigation into the fatal shooting of Alton Sterling, saying it should include possible state criminal violations, a spokesman for Gov. John Bel Edwards responded, saying that the U.S. attorney's office will not only investigate whether civil rights were violated, but also potential state and federal violations. "If the U.S. attorney's office finds any violation of state laws and believes the officers should be charged with battery, assault or murder, it will refer that back to the local district attorney for prosecution."Read more