By Tyronda James
Local activists are demanding the immediate firing, prosecution, and conviction of the officers involved in the death of Daniel Prude.
They say if demands are not met by October 16, they will travel to Albany, NY to demonstrate peacefully and ask the community to join.
They believe that ‘justice delayed is justice denied’ and vital that the community seek swift justice for the Rochester Police Officers who killed Daniel Prude on March 23rd, 2020.
“The following officers are currently enjoying a paid vacation (suspended with pay) after working our city streets for six-months despite murdering an unarmed Black man on a cold winter night: Sgt. Michael Magri, Ofc. Josiah Harris, Ofc. Paul Ricotta, Ofc. Francisco Santiago, Ofc. Andrew Specksgoor, Ofc. Troy Taladay, Ofc. Mark Vaughn,” said Miquel Powell, BSW, founder of Reentry & Community Development Center.
“We demand they are fired, prosecuted, and convicted immediately. Six months have passed and the Daniel Prude family has still not had any justice. The community of Rochester has not had recourse. We need more. We need prosecution of these officers that were involved or we’re going to be coming up Albany, and we’re going to be letting our voice be heard.”
On October 16th, they are asking for supporters to meet at the Public Safety Building to head to Albany. Their goal is to galvanize a group of 100 people.
“Our goal is also to look at the policies, procedures, or laws that are directly impacting and criminalizing, especially men of African descent,” said Clianda Florence-Yarde, educator and founder of Strength 2 Say.
Until we really begin to turn our attention to the laws that are governing these types of decisions that we’re going to keep going around with the same experience over and over again. And it has to stop now.”
On September 20, NYS Attorney General Letitia James held a press conference in Rochester, NY and the group said she “announced… nothing.”
“She asserted investigations can take six months and sometimes years to complete. We reject that timeframe. They have had enough time to “investigate” this murder. It is time to hand down indictments now,” said Powell.
“The attorney general’s office is privy to the same information we have seen, video footage apart, RPD body cameras, 300 page documents released by Rochester city hall…unveiling a little cover up of the homicide …the NY attorney general’s office does not value black lives.”
Jasmine Holliman, from the Center for Disability Rights said that they have been collaborations with fellow activists out in Buffalo, NY and other surrounding areas.
Holliman said that the CFDR is willing to assist with accommodations and participation with any protests.
More information can be found at the Reentry & Community Development Center’s FB page or by searching “Rochester Trip to Albany: Demanding Swift Justice” at eventbrite.com.
“Please join us. All Righteous activists or organizations with pure intentions are welcomed and encouraged to join this movement. It is a liberating activity,” as stated on press release.
“No swift justice. No peace.”