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Tulsa black community member speaks out about policing in Tulsa

Posted at 4:50 AM, Jun 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-10 07:14:30-04

TULSA, Okla. — Tulsa Police are investigating after saying they stopped two boys for jaywalking on Tuesday.

The Tulsa Police Officer involved says they just wanted to talk to the boys who were jay walking, but that's when things turned for the worst.

We received body cam footage that shows of the officers handcuffing the two black teenagers.

You can hear one of the teenagers repeating 'I can't breathe', and an officer responding 'you're fine'.

The other teenager was also hand cuffed, but eventually let go.

The teen arrested continued to fight police as he was placed in a police car, and they left the scene.

We spoke with an activist in the community, and a member of the Terence Crutcher foundation named Greg Robinson.

“When you think about what is probably going to come out is, hey the officers were following protocol, and ‘hey they probably were but that’s the problem," Robinson said. "That’s why we’ve been arguing that we need to de-vest in enforcement and invest in other programs.”

He says the problem is, you don't see little boys being harassed for jay walking in Brookside, Utica Square, or Cherry Street.

“You can be walking down the street, minding your own business, and you get jumped out on and harassed," Robinson said. "So, How are we supposed to feel? How are we supposed to build bridges with the police if we can’t walk down our own street?"

But in North Tulsa, he says the black community is hunted.

Robinson says he is not surprised because this happens everyday.

He also says the trust between the police and the black community has been broken for a while, and he wants things to change.

He wants the Mayor, City Council Members, and Legislatures to begin changing policies.

“I don’t want them out here marching with us, I don’t want them out here kneeling with us," Robinson said. "They have the power to make policy changes.”

If things change, his hope is that one day, police officers following protocol in a black neighborhood doesn't escalate to situations like this.

“Right now the city pays one hundred and twenty two million dollars to the police," Robinson said. "We don’t even have a line idol for mental health, we gotta change our priorities.”

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