Black Officers See Both Sides In Furor Over Police Shooting Minorities


How do black police officers view the nationwide protests over police shootings and racial profiling issues. “As a black and Latina woman, I don't necessarily disagree” with some of the issues raised by protesters, Capt. Bisa French of the Richmond, Ca., Police Department, tells the San Francisco Chronicle. “It's a conflicting situation. They (black officers) are part of these segments of the community, too. I think about how I would be treated if I wasn't wearing the uniform.” After grand juries in Missouri and New York declined to indict white officers who killed unarmed black men, protesters said police routinely target black citizens for arrest and are too quick to use force against them. French noted that the broad brush painted both ways, with whole agencies denounced for the actions of a few officers.

“I certainly understand that there are injustices within the criminal justice system, but we're all being condemned,” she said. “Some of our officers feel like they are out there doing the right thing on a daily basis, but they are getting judged for the actions of the few who do wrong.” For many black officers, fairness in policing is a paramount issue. Lt. LeRonne Armstrong, a 16-year Oakland Police Department veteran, said he experienced apparent racism while out of uniform when he was pulled over in an East Bay city about five years ago. He said the officer, who never gave a reason for the stop, let him go after he revealed he was a cop. “Ultimately, I wasn't cited, but the whole thing made me very uncomfortable,” Armstrong said. “You want to believe that it's all lawful, but sometimes you just don't know.”

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