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Jury Finds City of Rockford Liable For Cops Reckless Conduct

Mark Anthony BarmoreThrough the years, some of you might have read when I’ve reported on the 2009 death of Mark Anthony Barmore in Rockford, IL.

It’s not often that I write editorials or opinion pieces.   About this matter, this time is different because this case happened in the city where I live.  Although Illinois has agreed to allow the media in courtrooms, we only get a 3 to 5 second snippet of trials in local television news.

When Mark was killed in 2009, I learned first-hand that things I had heard about Rockford were true.  I had heard that those raised in Rockford do not like “outsiders.” When Oda Poole and Stan North killed Mark, sections of the community demonstrated and people came from elsewhere in their support.  The Rev. Jesse Jackson was one such person.  An employee of the county personally stated to me that she did not know why “outsiders” had to come to Rockford.  Well, because “insiders” showed no concern. Mark was reported to be the fourth unarmed Black man killed by Oda Poole.  It was business as usual.

Rev. Jackson saw Mark’s body — at least two bullet holes in his back.  There were no wounds in the front of Mark’s body.  This indicated that Mark was shot in the back. Winnebago County Coroner Sue Fiduccia remarked to the Rev. Jackson’s observation that he is not a physician.  The insult to intelligence spoke volumes, and she continued being reelected because she ran for office unopposed.

The final investigation into the killing of Mark Anthony Barmore resulted in a finding that the police officers were wrong to enter the premises with their guns drawn.

There have been lawsuits. The Estate of Mark Anthony Barmore filed suit. Five years after Mark was killed, the City of Rockford settled that lawsuit for $1.1 million. Read the rest of this entry

Upsetting The Apple Cart

Today is a day of technology and social media.  It keeps news flowing and people informed.  I am grateful for it, but also overwhelmed by it.  We continue seeking justice for Trayvon Martin, Ethan Saylor, Kendrick Johnson, Jonathan Ferrell, Jordan Davis, Marshall Coulter, Marlon Brown.

My fear?  That before I can write on or update what is happening in any of these cases, another person with a disability, or a kid, or with dark skin will be unjustly killed by someone with a badge, or a gun owner who thinks a license to carry is a license to summarily kill, or by an unknown party or parties.

This is a long article.  It is long because I want to answer a question that has been asked of me several times; i.e., why do I blog?  Why do I blog about Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman, etc. Read the rest of this entry

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