October 8, 2014   |   Justin King
October 8, 2014
(TheAntiMedia) Beavercreek, Ohio – The Beavercreek Police Department has been under peaceful occupation since Monday. Occupiers have held the lobby of the police department over the killing of John Crawford by Officer Sean Williams.
Crawford was gunned down in Wal-Mart after Ronald Ritchie called 911, and suggested that Crawford was getting ready to shoot up the store. Police responded and killed Crawford less than two seconds after making contact. Crawford was holding a BB gun taken from the store’s shelves. The incident has sparked outrage throughout the area. The outrage is compounded by the fact that the last time a Beavercreek cop killed someone, it was the same officer. In the sleepy little town’s history, there has never been an officer killed in the line of duty.
The occupation was organized by the Ohio Student Association, and they were joined by members of other activist groups.
I pulled into the Beavercreek Police Department shortly after midnight. There were roughly 20 people still occupying the building. They ranged in age from eighteen to their mid-fifties. While the majority of those participating in this particular demonstration were black, the demonstration drew supporters from every race. There were sleeping bags and coolers lining the lobby walls and prior to my arrival the family of John Crawford had brought in food for demonstrators.
When I asked a group of students if there was any message that they wanted to tell the public, they all responded
“Tell everyone to be here tomorrow at 1pm.”
On Thursday at 1pm, officials will meet with demonstrators at the Beavercreek Police Department to discuss some of the key issues surrounding Crawford’s killing. The demonstrators have three main questions for officials (they made a point of correcting me when I used the term “demands”). The questions are:
- What is going to happen to Officer Sean Williams?
- What is going to happen to the man who placed the 911 call?
- Will there be an overhaul of the policies and procedures?
The grand jury found that taking less than two seconds to assess a situation before opening fire was somehow appropriate. The likelihood of John Crawford’s family achieving any sort of justice is small. The federal government has opened a probe into the case, but without public outcry a positive resolution is unlikely.
At least two members of Ohio Open Carry were participating in the occupation as a show of solidarity.
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