Senator California Kamala Harris addressed the issue of fatal police shootings of black men and women in the town hall in Sacramento on Thursday, saying that Stephon Clark, who was shot and killed by police last month, have not lost their lives.
Clark was unarmed, was in his own yard, and, holding the phone, when he was shot March 18. The incident sparked a national debate about race and use of force by police spurred protests in Sacramento and other cities.
“There is no doubt that it was a life that was not to be lost,” Harris 2020 potential democratic presidential candidate, told a crowd of several hundred gathered in a local Church. “This life that never was to be completed”.
An independent autopsy found that police officer shot a 20 Clark just after they took his mobile phone for weapons. He was wounded eight times, mostly in the back. Benjamin crump, the attorney representing the Clark family, said the autopsy “contradicts the police narrative of what we said.” Clark’s shooting is still under investigation police Department of Sacramento.
Harris has spoken about criminal justice matters in the subject she was very focused in her first term as a Senator. Elected in 2016, Harris is only the second black woman to serve in the Senate. During her time on the political stage was brief, the name Harris was a prominent place in the lists of potential presidential candidates.
Her comments stand in stark contrast with the reaction of the President of the United States Donald trump who is yet to say anything about the death of Clark. Answering the question about the position of President on March 28, a press conference, the press Secretary of the White house Sarah Huckabee Sanders has called the shooting a “local”.
This incident followed several high-profile police shootings of black men in recent years. According fatal the basis of the newspaper “Washington post” effect, some 294 people were shot dead by the police in 2018. Sixty of these people were identified as black in the news. And studies have shown that there are significant and persistent racial differences in the use of force by the police.
Harris has previously faced criticism for its handling of police shootings
Harris served as a California Prosecutor General’s office from January 2011 until early 2017, and was focused largely in the area of criminal justice and law enforcement issues since she was first elected to the Senate in 2016.
However, Harris is not to face criticism while leading the California of justice, with some, many of whom supported her political campaign, arguing that it must do more to increase the accountability of the police and to independently investigate officer-involved shooting. Some of her biggest critics was the black legislators who had hoped that it would adopt more stringent laws to control the activities of the police.
In 2015, Harris is not back legislation that would require her office to conduct an independent investigation of fatal police shootings, claiming that the local district prosecutors were better equipped to deal with this issue. Two years later, Sacramento groups, angered by the death of Clark has repeatedly protested near the office of the local district attorney Anne Marie Schubert, demanding that the officers involved in the shooting of Clark charged. Currently, the employees remain on leave while the investigation continues.
Stephon Clark’s death is expected to be a major factor in the upcoming Sacramento district attorney election.
On Thursday in Sacramento in the hall, which was attended by grandmother Clark, Harris seemed to hold a strong position. She used her time in the Church to discuss the shooting of Clark and connect it to other issues affecting the black community. “When I look at all the issues that were presented, what happened to this young man, I look at the issues that have been difficult in our country for decades after decades for decades,” she said.
Harris also talked about the need for police to deal with implicit biases when interacting with communities of color, noting that while she served as attorney General, she’s a California Department of justice of their own training on bias and use of force.
This revision has led to the creation of training programmes for staff aimed at reducing the impact of hidden bias in law enforcement. On Thursday, Harris said that about 2,000 employees in the state received training.
The Senator also stressed that making employees aware of their preferences was decisive. “When your bias is combined with the fact that you carry a gun, this is something that should be a priority for the United States,” she said.
After the incident, when Harris asked if she thought law enforcement spent too much political influence, the Los Angeles times reported that she does not give a direct answer, but told reporters, “there is no doubt” that reform is needed.
Harris also refrained from commenting on the new proposal from California lawmakers that would tighten up the level, when employees have the right to use deadly force.
“I’m looking forward to see the language,” Harris told reporters. “I think they are very interesting. Of course, there is work to be done.”