San Diego Black Community Leaders, Allies Call For Police Reform
Members of the local black community and allies called out the police response to protests this weekend.
On Monday morning, the San Diego Police Department tweeted that more than 100 arrests were made over the weekend. They cited incidents such as burglary and officer assault.
Community leaders say local law enforcement responded to protesters with much more force and violence than was necessary. San Diego County Democratic Party Chair Will Rodriguez-Kennedy said police used non-lethal weapons but in ways that were dangerous and targeted toward people of color.
“It was peaceful up until the middle of the day. What changed? The change is when they ended their march at the hall of justice. The San Diego police department marched 50 armed troops basically ... into a contained space,” Rodriguez-Kennedy said.
The protests over the weekend were largely peaceful until tension grew toward the evening. Protesters threw water bottles at the police, and the police responded with tear gas and pepper bullets.
Deputy Public Defender Genevieve Jones-Wright said she doesn’t want to see more protests, but laws and policies to fight systemic racism and police brutality.
“I don’t want police chiefs to simply send their condolences and say we must do better as a profession. I want them to stand up, to publicly endorse a mechanism to provide a check on their profession,” she said.
Jones-Wright called for policing changes like a community review board and a ban to the choke-hold.