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Aug 23 2014

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Kajieme Powell, Police Suicide, and the Politics of Policing (Video)

This entry is part 6 of 8 in the seriesFerguson MO: Revealing of The American Problem

On Aug. 19, St. Louis police fatally shot Kajieme Powell (25) within a few miles from location of the Michael Brown shooting. According to officials, Powell had stolen donuts and energy drinks from a store, prompting the owner to call police. Upon their arrival at around 1 p.m., they found Powell who was asking to be killed. The police chose not to use other means to subdue the suspect. The media quickly framed Powell’s death as “police suicide” 

 

 

 

The terminology problematic for several reasons, including.

1) Suicide is, by definition, the taking of one’s life. This obviously was not the case in the death of Kajieme Powell.

2) Calling the death suicides distracts public attention from the source – 27 bullets fired by police.

3) An investigation is underway, and probably, civil action will follow.

4) To the extent that Powell’s death is suicide, would not police complicit in it and therefore culpable for assisted suicide?

Officers on the scene began firing 15 seconds after arriving. Their initial story was that Powell had come with three or four feet, wielding a knife. The video, however, reveals key discrepancies from police claims. Shots began only 15 seconds after police arrived on the scene. Powell, though clearly not in an emotionally sound state, never came within four feet of the officers. And his arms were down to his side, indicating that Powell was not an emanate threat.

Series Navigation<< The MIchael Brown Autopsy Raises Serious Questions (Video)Dr. Cornel West Offers Early Perspectives on Michael Brown Shooting and Ferguson MO (Video) >>
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Permanent link to this article: http://kennethdprice.com/2014/08/23/kajieme-powell-police-suicide-and-the-politics-of-policing/