published Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Chattanooga: Meeting on police shootings grows heated, emotional


by Jacqueline Koch
  • photo
    Staff Photo by Margaret Fenton Rev. Dwight Harrison introduced the word "murder' into the discussion on Tuesday evening at Glenwood Recreation Center. The NAACP held the community meeting to discuss an independent investigation into the recent shootings by area Police.

An NAACP meeting tonight to discuss recent police-involved shootings grew more heated and emotional by the minute as Chattanooga residents expressed their anger and frustration.

Some accused the Chattanooga Police Department of lying and snickered as police spokeswoman Sgt. Jerri Weary answered questions about investigations into the shootings.

When one man in the crowd asked whether Sgt. Weary was being paid to lie for the police department, she engaged in fingerpointing, yelling and crying.

For more than an hour, more than 200 residents listened to people ask questions and give opinions during the meeting. which was hosted by the NAACP.

“We may not be able to answer all your questions tonight,” said Valoria Armstrong, president of the local NAACP chapter, “but we want you to have a venue in which your concerns are heard.”

Family members of those recently killed by police, including Alonzo Heyward, Alonzo O’Kelley Jr. and Richard LaMark Dunn attended the meeting, speaking and holding signs.

“How could you not come?” asked Mr. Dunn’s mother, Christine. “Why should we have to defend who Mark is and why he was shot?”

For complete details, see tomorrow’s Times Free Press.

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Salsa said...

Keep your thugs with guns at home and maybe they won't get shot.

August 18, 2009 at 9:34 p.m.
labwstone said...

Because this area seems to have such a lack of confidence in the CPD, maybe they should pull out and spend their time in places where they are appreciated. I'm sure that way less people would be hurt/killed. Question: If someone was pointing a weapon at you would your first instinct be to protect yourself and others, or would you stop and meditate on race and racial relations?

August 18, 2009 at 9:59 p.m.
cornmeal said...

Our officers have a very rough time dealing with the several violent or potentially violent offenders they have come into contact with lately. I am glad none of the officers have been hurt. Perhaps the frustration of losing a family member is causing the actions on the part of the families. Maybe Chief Cooper can counter-act some of the concern on the part of the NAACP by being more pro-active with the community in areas where he will be accepted.

August 18, 2009 at 10:36 p.m.
aluk22 said...

Though the police were likely justified in all three cases, it's fine that there are groups that will scrutinize and question what happened and take a hard line.

August 18, 2009 at 11:42 p.m.
bell_fighter said...

Ignorance is rampant among some of your responces.First i would like to addsess salsa,what a mean and nasty thing to say refering to people as thugs ,know ALL YOUR FACTS about each case before you JUDGE.Labwstone everyone has a right to live where ever they want without the fear of being shot by ANYONE because of their agendas.Indian your rant was just plain ignorant and doesn't deserve a comment.Everyone who has something ugly to say remember this:If you have children and these things happened to them HOW WOULD YOU FEEL.Life has a way of making us eat our words later.

August 19, 2009 at 12:48 a.m.
themanfromtn said...

It appears Bell_Fighter that you believe the only reason those shootings occurred is because of an agenda. I suppose it is possible that you have been influenced by years of propaganda from those like the NAACP that need you to believe that so they can exist. You need to check your logic. If your children are taught to respect authority and live by the rules there is an excellent chance they will live well. If your children are taught that the police are their enemy, that snitching (a civic duty by the way) is a crime against the black race and doing well in school or work is acting white then there is an excellent chance they will die well. Do not expect things to improve until those types of racist teachings are abolished. They are an underlying influence of many of our so called black organizations, I would turn to the teachings of MLK not M-X for prosperity. Do we teach our children content of character or separation from the whites? Do we teach them to live together in harmony or in stature through violence? Is it the law of the land or the jungle that we teach? If we continue to separatism we will always be separate.

August 19, 2009 at 10:56 a.m.
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