Local forum discusses police brutality solutions - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Local forum discusses police brutality solutions

Amarillo, TX - A meeting to discuss a solution to end perceived police brutality was held this evening where seven testimonies were heard to illustrate the problem.

The meeting was full of raw emotion, tension and even some laughter. It was apparent the Amarillo Police Department was on the chopping block, however the main issue was to focus on one thing, reaching a solution.

Local attorney, Jeff Blackburn is notorious in the community for his banter and for his passion to stick up for those who have been done wrong by the justice system. And tonight, he kicked it up a notch by hosting the Amarillo citizens for open government forum, where police brutality was key on the agenda.

"Every time I see this video I am never any less outraged and offended," Ryan Brown, Lawyer with Blackburn and Brown, said, referring to a case of police brutality back in March. "He's slammed down in the snowy grass, two other officers pile on top of him and repeatedly beat him in the crotch."

The seven testimonies of police brutality were shared to a packed house of citizens who were curious, upset and rattled at what they heard. All seven claimed they now fear law enforcement and even shutter at the sight.

"Ever since this incident, I am physically mentally...every time I see an officer is start to shake, I start to cry sometimes, and I can't sleep at night," John Wilson, an alleged victim of police brutality said. "I'm depressed and it has physically messed me up, mentally, I am scarred from it."

After all of these testimonies, Blackburn made it clear to the audience that trusting police was maybe not in their best interest, however Chief of Police Robert Taylor disagrees.

"They can always come to the police department," Chief Taylor said. "We've always taken a good look at all the complaints, we process every one we get."

This meeting also comes at a time where APD has implemented new internal affair policies. Blackburn said they don't make any sense, however Chief Taylor said they're implemented for a reason and will hopefully combat some of the issues discussed at tonight's meeting.

The meeting ended with Blackburn stating that there should never be a justice system that allows brutality without correction. He demands the system that has caused the problem be fixed.

However police officials encourage everyone to realize there are always two sides to every story.

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