By Shawn King.
Few cases typify everything that is wrong with gun rights, police brutality and racial profiling like this one.
Early Tuesday in Indianapolis, an African-American woman was being carjacked in front of her home in her working class neighborhood. She ran back in the house, told her husband, who is also black, and they called the police to report the robbery. That seemed to be the right and safe thing to do.
As the police pulled up, the husband, who was later identified as 48-year-old Carl Williams, opened the garage to their home and was immediately shot in the gut by police.
They claim they believed he was the robber and that because he had a firearm of his own, he was shot in self-defense. Officials identified the officer who shot Williams as nine-year veteran cop Christopher Mills.
He, of course, was not the robber. In fact, police have yet to even say if they caught the robber. Since they dusted the car for fingerprints, it appears that the actual man committing a crime got away and the man who wanted to protect his wife and family was instead shot and currently fighting for his own life in the hospital.
“I think that’s really crazy. What do we have, trigger-happy police officers out here now?” asked Angela Parrot, who lives in the neighborhood told the Indy Star.
Speaking to the Daily News, several reporters and neighbors all confirmed that the husband who was shot was black, but said that they do not yet know the ethnicity of the officer who shot him.
Whatever the case, the violent encounter should help illuminate the very real fears so many black families have when calling the police. This family needed help. They wanted to report a crime in their neighborhood. The husband wanted to protect his wife. These are all very basic rights we have, but day after day we see that gun rights don’t really apply equally to African-Americans.
Merely reaching for his wallet got Philando Castile shot and killed in his own car. Having a gun in his pocket caused police to shoot Alton Sterling repeatedly in his back and chest.
We do not yet know the extent of this man’s injuries, but a bullet to the mid-section can wreck havoc. Yet again, without fully understanding the facts of what they were seeing, American police fired upon a man unjustly. It’s just not right.