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As Leftist groups like Black Lives Matter and some Democrats in Congress increase their calls to “defund” and “disband” police departments around the country following the death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd, a lawyer for his family says they aren’t among them.
Family attorney Benjamin Crump said the call to terminate or defund departments “has not come from Philonise Floyd’s family or anybody working with us.”
“We want to try to work to say we need to do restructuring and we need to work together and in concert to try to solve this problem,” family attorney Benjamin Crump told Fox News on Sunday.
“This is not a black problem. This is not a white problem. This is an American problem, and the only way we can heal this country is by working together,” he continued.
“What we want is people from both sides of the aisle, people from communities of color, community partners, to get with law enforcement, so we don’t continue to have … black people being killed by the police unjustifiably and unnecessarily and senselessly, and nobody being held accountable,” Crump added.
Brother Philonise Floyd told Fox News during the same interview that he wants improvements in the way police perform their duties.
“What I would like is for all police around America to get their jobs and do them the right way, the correct way. Innocent people shouldn’t have to die,” he said. “You can do your job and still maintain respect for others.”
During emotional testimony before House lawmakers last week, Philonise Floyd called for police reforms that would ban chokeholds, among other law enforcement techniques, though such holds have already been banned or deemphasized by scores of departments around the country.
While police reforms may or may not be needed, most Americans appear to agree that what happened to George Floyd was a gross injustice. The four officers involved in his arrest have all been charged with crimes; former officer Derek Chauvin, who pinned George Floyd to the pavement for nearly nine minutes using his knee, has been charged with second-degree murder.
That said, former NYPD officer and Secret Service agent Dan Bongino noted during a separate Fox News interview over the weekend that in the vast majority of cases, police officers respond with force only after they have been put in that position by a violent suspect.
“Obviously, a man died and that’s tragic. Nobody wants to see that, whether it’s the police side, the community side, anywhere,” Bongino noted, as he gave his views on the shooting of 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks by a white police officer in Atlanta Friday.
“Having said that I always ask the question, when it comes to law enforcement issues for the people who are, sadly, ignorant of them, many who haven’t lived in the shoes of a law enforcement officer themselves, ‘Well, what would you do? What’s your suggestion?’”
“So you have to arrest him, okay? And clearly, the subject does not want to be arrested,” he said of Brooks.
“Okay, so let’s walk through… ‘What do you do?’ Well, again, we can’t let him get back in the car, so we have to arrest him using force.
“Keep in mind…not force the police officers wanted. They didn’t initiate this, the subject did. Okay, so what do you do then, he punches you in the face? Oh, clearly, we just walk away then,” said Bongino.
The officer who shot Brooks has been fired. Also, the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s office listed the manner of death as a homicide, even though Brooks had stolen the officer’s taser and appeared to fire it at him as the officer gave chase.
As for defunding police, the city of Minneapolis has voted to do just that.
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