Confronting the Carceral State
Citation: 104 Geo L.J. (2016)
In August 2014, Michael Brown, an unarmed African-American teenager, was killed by a white police officer. The young man’s body lay for hours at mid-day on a residential street, with multiple gun shot wounds to his head, chest, and arm. In the months that followed, police choked Eric Garner to death on a sidewalk in Staten Island, gunned down Tamir Rice on a playground in Ohio, shot Walter Scott in the back, and arrested Sandra Bland, effectively for a minor traffic violation. Bland died in custody shortly after. Then, in a vicious in-school arrest weeks later, a white police officer known in the school as “Officer Slam” threw a young African-American girl to the ground, flipped her body over, and dragged her across the floor in front of her stunned classmates.