Thursday, November 7, 2013

Killed For Asking For Help....AGAIN!

As much as I love being Black in America I have to admitt that there are certain "hazards" that go along with this journey. I realized quite some time ago that I had to follow a different set of rules than society at large. Understanding these rules, and following them have been an integral part of becoming in man in my early forties. Things like appearing non threatening to the rest of the world, trying to differentiate yourself from negative stereo types or cooperating with Police who want to serve most of the public but won't protect you, has been a way of life for years for those of us who actually care about growing old. But unfortunately applying these rules is difficult when the very sight of you instills fear, and suspicion despite your intentions. These emotions relegate you to nothing more than a dangerous enemy, and on many occasions they can transform you into a victim.

Police are seeking charges against a Dearborn Heights, Michigan resident for shooting and killing a 19-year-old Detroit woman who sought help at the resident’s house after a car accident early Saturday morning.

The Dearborn Heights Police Department said, and autopsy information from the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office confirm that Renisha McBride was shot in the head with a shotgun around 630 am Saturday by a resident of a house near the scene of a car accident after attempting to seek help at the house. Her cellphone battery had died, her family said.

Police initially told McBride’s family her body was “dumped” and found near the house she approached. Police have since changed their account of events, saying McBride died on the resident’s front porch. Police added she was supposedly believed to have been an intruder and shot in self-defense.

Here we go AGAIN!

Neighbors of the shooter said they were also told by police at the scene that the shooting occurred based on self-defense.

McBride’s maternal aunt, Bernita Spinks, told The local media the young woman was shot in the back of the head as she left the porch of the home where she sought assistance.

Spinks said no matter if the shooter believed McBride to be an intruder, shooting her was not justified.

“He shot her in the head ... for what? For knocking on his door,” Spinks told the local media on Tuesday. “If he felt scared or threatened, he should have called 911.”

Dearborn Heights police have asked the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office to file charges against the shooter. Police have not made the person’s name public.

Spinks praised the decision to seek charges, saying, “Thank you Jesus! I’m very happy there is progress (on the case).”

Yet Michigan has a “stand your ground” law, which allows people to use deadly force against “perceived”threats to protect themselves, whether or not they attempt to flee.

Spinks said McBride’s family met with the Prosecutor’s Office Tuesday. She believes the shooting was racially motivated.

“You see a young black lady on your porch and you shoot?” Spinks said.“He killed my niece and he needs to pay for it. He needs to be in jail.”

“There was no window broken. My niece didn’t bother anyone. She went looking for help and now she’s dead.”

The area where McBride was killed in Dearborn Heights, a predominately white area, is about 12 miles west of Detroit, a predominantly black city.

McBride left home Friday night in a white Ford Taurus without telling anyone where she was going. Her family was informed of her death Monday morning.

McBride’s family said she was soft spoken, hardworking and stayed to herself. She had just begun a job at Ford Motor Co.

A vigil for McBride was held on Wednesday at 4:45 pm in front of the home where she was killed.

There are many different adjectives that I could choose to describe this seemingly repeatitive narrative. Tragic, disgusting, and disturbing are just of few of the words that come to mind. But perhaps the most perplexing detail about this story is that a nineteen year old girl with her entire life ahead of her was murdered for doing nothing more than being African-American and in distress.


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