Racial Justice Organizations Respond to Daniel Prude's Death
A national racial justice organization is petitioning for change following the release of a video showing a mentally distraught black man who died while in police custody this past winter in Rochester. Color of Change is calling for police retraining in how they respond to mental health crises.
Senior Director of Criminal Justice Campaigns, Scott Roberts says Daniel Prude’s death has echoes of the George Floyd case.
“Restricting their ability to breathe and eventually suffocating them, officers piled on top of Daniel Prude in a similar fashion. There was no need, there were hands on the head, pressing the face into the street. They placed a spit hood on him. He is naked, handcuffed on the street in a snowy night in Rochester”
Roberts adds that officers in the video appear to be making jokes and even mocked Prude. Officers have been suspended with pay and Rochester’s Mayor is speaking out now, against the recommendations of city lawyers. Roberts feels her response is too late.
“The damage I think she’s doing to public trust in the community. Even the process that we are seeing there, did not necessarily have to happen in this way.” Roberts said.
He adds that Mayors and Police Chiefs need to get out in front of these cases and take responsibility sooner. Roberts says Rochesher Mayor Lovely Warren’s delayed response has already taken a toll.
“Holding back the information in this case I think has only done more to deteriorate trust in the community and make the protests more intense.”
Members from Rebirth-SYR planned travel to join members of Black Lives Matter Rochester this weekend to protest police brutality cases.