As has been the case in the weeks following the shooting death of Atatiana Jefferson by then Fort Worth police officer Aaron Dean, many citizens were at city hall Tuesday night to state their protests during the citizens’ comments part of the city council meeting.
And this week, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was on hand. Estella Williams, President of the Fort Worth/Tarrant County branch of the NAACP addressed the council.
Williams cited the opening line of the United States Constitution at the beginning of her speech. “It begins with ‘We the people,'” she said, reminding all those listening of the equality of all human beings.
Then, Williams read a list of requests from the NAACP she said the organization believes necessary to move forward with the mending of relations between the city officials, the police department, and the citizens, particularly citizens of color.
*Interim Police Chief Ed Kraus release full body camera footage from all officers on the scene the night Jefferson was shot.
*The names and rank be released of all officers on the scene. Each officer be identified and fully investigated and properly disciplined if in violation of department policy and procedures are determined.
*Interim Chief Kraus investigate and file additional charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and child endangerment against former officer Dean due to the trauma suffered by the minor child in the room.
*Written police policy requiring full body camera footage of police shooting deaths while in custody, complaints of police misconduct and excessive force be publicly released within 24 hours of the incident.
*Establishment of a civilian police accountability oversight board, which would be independent, have investigatory power, subpoena power, and mandatory police cooperation.
*Because of multiple unjustified cases of excessive and deadly force, request for the appropriate City of Fort Worth officials identify and address the systemic problem(s) within the culture of its police department.
*The appropriate City of Fort Worth officials establish a non-police response support team to address welfare checks, mental health calls, and non-critical request calls. It was suggested funds from the Crime Control District could be utilized for this initiative.
Williams said that while the NAACP recognizes some action have been taken since the shooting of Jefferson, there is still much work to be done. She added that the NAACP believes addressing and implementing the requested actions will aid in providing a positive impact for citizens and city officials.
The NAACP is requesting a response within two weeks.
Dean has resigned from the police force and has been charged with murder.