As hard as it is to believe, there are still people in America that believe that racism and racial profiling and targeting within police departments is a made-up issue. Unfortunately, there are cases just like this one that point out exactly what is wrong with America as far as racism, police brutality, and our problematic gun culture.
On Tuesday, an Indianapolis African American woman alerted her husband (who is also black) that a man had approached her car and tried to rob her right outside of their home. Her husband, 48-year-old Carl Williams, did everything he was supposed to do by calling the police to tell them about the robbery. By all logic, he and his wife should have been safe and protected. But that’s not what happened.
When the police arrived, Williams opened the garage door to speak to them and instead of being helped, he was immediately shot in the stomach by nine-year veteran police officer Christopher Mills. According to law enforcement, the cops claim the shooting was in self-defense and they thought he was the robber and the police were told the robber had a gun. Obviously, the cops made a huge mistake.
Not only was Williams (the homeowner who was supposed to be protected by the police officers he had called) shot in the gut, but the robber wasn’t even caught. In fact, he got away entirely and the police still have not given any reports on whether or not they know who the suspect is. Meanwhile, Williams is in the hospital, fighting for his life. The injustice and harsh reality of this situation was perfectly summed up by Angela Parrot, a neighbor of Williams. Parrot said:
“I think that’s really crazy. What do we have, trigger-happy police officers out here now?”
Exactly. Although the ethnicity of the officer who fired the shot into Williams’ stomach is unknown, this is absolutely a disgusting case of racial profiling. And unfortunately, this case is a terrifying reality that many black families are living with, even as they call on the police to help protect them when they are victims of a crime. Shaun King perfectly summed this issue up in an article on New York Daily News when he said:
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.
It’s unclear whether or not Williams will make it through as we are not aware of the severity of the injuries to his midsection, but our thoughts are with him and his wife. Senseless violence and “mistakes” like this cannot continue to happen. Something needs to be done.
You can watch a report of this incident below:
Featured image is a screenshot