While the Occupy Atlanta version of the Occupy Wall Street Movement may not be very large, it has served as a draw-point to bring more attention to the problem of Atlanta Police brutality and inept actions. (For example, an Atlanta woman was arrested because her name matched that of another woman wanted for aggravated assault, even though their birth dates, and other information, like address, didn’t match. She was jailed for 53 days.)
This is the area where Oakland, for all of its faults, can be said to be ahead of Atlanta and most cities. Except for its transit police, which Oakland Police don’t want to be associated with.
Atlanta’s MARTA Transit Police have a SF BART-Style Oscar Grant problem in the making.
Atlanta’s MARTA Transit Police faces the situation where a 19 year old African American young man was shot – some say in cold blood – last Saturday. The problem is there’s no known video of the incident as of this writing.
This is the area where Oakland, for all of its faults, can be said to be ahead of Atlanta and most cities. Atlanta’s MARTA Transit Police faces the situation where a 19 year old African American young man was shot – some say in cold blood – last Saturday. The problem is there’s no known video of the incident as of this writing.
His name is Joetavious Stafford, 19, of Atlanta and was killed by MARTA police Officer Robert Waldo, 31, at about 10:20 p.m. Saturday outside the MARTA Vine City train station.
According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Stafford “was killed when police responded to a gunshot during a fight, MARTA officials said. Rodney Stafford told Channel 2 Action News that his brother was shot after he raised his hands…MARTA officials said Joetavious Stafford was armed, but they refused to answer whether he was shot in the back or while on the ground. Rodney Stafford disputed the claim that his brother was armed.”
Rodney Stafford told Channel 2 Action News his sibling was involved in a melee when a shot was fired by somebody in the crowd. He contends Waldo ran toward the fight and shot his brother after he halted.
“My brother threw his hands up. MARTA police shot him in the back. Pow,” Stafford told Channel 2. “And my brother lying on the ground, just looking at me and I was looking at his gunshot wound. As I’m looking at that, MARTA police shot him two more times in the back.”
The issue has become a flash-point for the Occupy Atlanta movement, and was noted in my video interview with Occupy Atlanta attendees here:
The major problem is that Atlanta doesn’t have a large “YouTube culture” where someone who has a camcorder or smartphone would almost immediately upload their video. So there may be someone out there with the video, but they’ve not been encouraged to come forward.