Why another farce of a police report?
When the police version of the circumstances surrounding their May 10, 2013 basement shooting death of Terrance Terrill Franklin was published September 26, 2013, so-called leaders, Black and White, seemed to finally breathe a sigh of relief. Since writing four 2013 columns on Mr. Franklin’s death (May 22 and 29, June 12 and June 19), I have waited to see how protesters and defenders alike would express their opinions. Were opinions expressed truly passionate or just merit badges of protest or defense to wear in public and do nothing else?
These protest and defense rituals have been too long the routines in this city and cities across the country. Rallies and statements of either outrage or reports white washing the suspicious death of yet another African American, are followed by the silence of protestors and defenders alike. Why do print, broadcast and digital media continue to avoid relevant questions about that May 10th police shooting death of Terrance Franklin?
The 228-page police report of September 26, 2013, is a cover up, pure and simple. It became more ridiculous and suspicious the longer it took to be released, reinforced by the so-called Grand Jury “findings.” It is rumored that the family is considering filing a civil lawsuit in January, in state or federal court. We would hope so. In the spirit of the pursuit of justice, Terrance Franklin’s family and the Black community is owed that examination, an examination that should include:
• That officers involved in Franklin’s death be required to testify under oath in open court about the circumstances and conditions of police actions on the afternoon of his death.
• That forensic evidence be examined under oath.
• That Mr. Franklin’s side of the aisle be allowed to cross-examine those testifying.
• That Mr. Frankliin’s side be allowed to put their own experts on the stand.
• That investigators of those three days, May 10-12, be required to testify under oath and be examined by Mr. Franklin’s attorneys.
• That those who prepared the police version of Mr. Franklin’s basement death be required to give testimony under oath.
The family and the African American community are owed more than the sham that was the Grand Jury investigation under the current county attorney, Mike Freeman. Justice calls out that this clear and concise examination process be initiated and made the order of the day within the public arena of the court system. From discussions and conversations in our community, I know our community has not accepted as credible the sham report of the so-called circumstances that led to the death of T.T. Franklin on May 10, 2012.
It is only fitting that as we reach the close of 2013 and as we witness the crushing of the African American community’s political base, that we at least attempt to have one last great hurrah in 2013, in the search for justice in the name of justice.
This is written on December 10, the day of Nelson Mandela’s Memorial Service broadcast around the world. We pause to say prayers for his family and for his nation of South Africa. We remember him by the words used to describe him and wonder when Minneapolis leaders, Black and White, will earn these words also: truth and reconciliation, forgiveness and compromise, Constitution and Bill of Rights, comfort and consolation, freedom and justice, liberty and democracy. A humanitarian supporter of human rights, Nelson Mandela had the same dignity, grace and humility of such great warriors for peace and justice as Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr, and Mother Teresa. Farewell and God bless you.
For Ron’s hosted radio and TV show’s broadcast times, solution papers, books and archives, go to www.TheMinneapolisStory.com. To order his books go to Beacon on the Hill Press.