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Reexamining our Relationship 

Editor:

After reading the NCJ article "Power and Control" (July 16) about the police officer in Rio Dell who has an alleged history of perpetrating domestic violence, it does make one wonder how that wasn't confronted during the hiring phase.

And reading the statistic about the high incidence of domestic violence perpetration among families of police officers, how inadequate the response to domestic violence cases are by the police and the justice system and the constant incidences around the country of officers using violent and terrorizing methods with mostly citizens of color, call into question the way police are being trained, who is being hired and — more generally — what do we want the police force to be doing in our communities? They have too much power and control! This is an emergency!

We must redefine the relationship between the police and the community, what their role is and how they should go about doing it. In so many of the cases we have been hearing about with unarmed people of color ending up dead at the hands of police or the criminal justice system, some simple communication techniques and basic respect and compassion would have stopped the senseless killings. I know there are officers who do this. We need to protect black lives in the face of this horrible situation of injustice.

We need to build a movement to change the way law enforcement and the justice system are currently administered.  

Lynn Kerman, Eureka

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