Matt Sutton 212-613-8026
New York, NY – In response to the release of the grand jury’s findings–only indicting one of the three officers on a charge of “wanton endangerment”–in the horrific killing of Breonna Taylor by Louisville Police in what was a baseless no-knock warrant in a drug investigation, Kassandra Frederique, Executive Director of the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), released the following statement:
“Breonna Taylor should be alive today, but instead, the systems we have in place—as a result of the drug war—failed her. And they robbed her of the bright future she was just beginning. Had it not been for the drug war—which provides the military-grade equipment to local police departments through military weapons transfer and earmarked federal funds—Breonna would be alive today. And had it not been for the drug war that incentivizes drug arrests with said federal resources, the police likely would have never gone to her home to begin with.
While this decision is upsetting and certainly doesn’t go far enough, it does not change the fact that as long as the drug war remains, people of color will continue to have a bounty on their heads. They will continue to be gunned down in their beds, or held down until they can’t breathe with an officer’s knee on their necks. And worse, those responsible for their deaths will use drugs—or alleged drug involvement—as a cover for their merciless actions.
This isn’t an isolated incident. These aren’t ‘a few bad cops.’ It is a system that has been created through the parasitic relationship between policing, the drug war and racism. And until we completely terminate those connections, we are simply adding fuel to the fire and no court or jury will be able to stop the police violence that ensues.”