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Rally held in Raleigh for police accountability

Posted April 23

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— A group in Raleigh held a rally Saturday evening in a push for police accountability.

Two months after the shooting death of Akiel Denkins, the pain of the loss for some in the community has not lessened.

The participants in the rally said they want more community input and the Raleigh Police Department to strengthen its anti-bias training.

Demonstrators said they will continue marching to make sure their voices are heard.

“We are not going to accept this over-policing, criminalization and brutalization happening in our community,” Akiba Byrd said.

The group says the February shooting death of Denkins served as a highlight to what they call a “fractured relationship” between law enforcement.

Earlier this month, Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman announced that charges would not be filed against D.C. Twiddy, the officer who shot and killed Denkins. It was determined that Twiddy discharged his weapon in self-defense.

The group said it wants a community oversight board for police, and specific policies for recently approved police body cameras.

“You’ve got to understand body cams without the policies to protect us, to protect our right to see information,” Byrd said. “Without these policies, it just becomes another tool of the police to monitor, surveil us and criminalize us.”

The Raleigh Police Department declined to comment, but Raleigh Police Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown said she is willing to listen. Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane also said a community conversation is critical for everyone.

10 Comments

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  • Brenda Matthews Apr 24, 10:16 a.m.
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    What innocent person are you speaking of in your last sentence?

  • Carl Young Apr 24, 9:25 a.m.
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    Until the black community is willing to acknowledge, let alone address, the black-on-black crime that is destroying their neighborhood, their cause will never be taken seriously. We all read the news, there have been literally hundreds of black-on-black murders since this incident (over a dozen just in this area), yet they are totally ignored. Stop blaming the police for your issues and focusing on the .0001% of incidents, where were deemed justified no less, and focus on the larger issue of correcting your own neighborhood. When a young male is selling drugs on the street corner, don't look the other way, do something about it. Until then, you will never be taken seriously.

  • Jamison Bollinger Apr 24, 9:24 a.m.
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    Let's have a rally demanding violent offenders of all races be accountable for their behavior first. Then officers wouldn't be forced to defend theirselves. I'm so sick of these attention seeking, crass and boorish people causing a clamor of falsehoods and fabrications. Get a life people. Get a job and earn an honest living. Bet you see a dramatic drop in officers being forced into defense mode. You won't be struggling to hide your dope and your energy will have been investing in something constructive. And guess what......you won't have to demand the street grade of "respect" you currently haven't earned. You will have earned the respect of other working citizens. So shut your suck holes and learn to be productive. STOP blaming law enforcement officials for the violence initiated by those you rally to protect.

  • Shandy Scott Apr 24, 7:27 a.m.
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    Find the signs hilarious. FBI facts state 92% of blacks are murdered by 13.7% of the population, other blacks. They will never protest this, acknowledge this or address this fact!!!

  • Lance Cotten Apr 24, 7:03 a.m.
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    Like the woman's sign reads... Am I next? Simple answer is if you run from the police and ignore their commands and then you try to grab his/her gun and then your gun in the process of a struggle.. then yes you might very well be "next" If the police are in the Wrong they are held accountible!!! Just look to SC where the cop shot that black man in the back as he was running away. That officer was and darn sure should have been held accountible!!! Give me a break with all this police accountability....

  • Amy LaFluer Apr 24, 1:01 a.m.
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    totally agree with you....people should make their voices heard in support of these officers too....instead of teaching society accountability... People are just gonna make law enforcement stop making anyone accountable....

  • Barrett Powell Apr 24, 12:27 a.m.
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    What about personal responsibility?

  • Hubert Lee Dawson Apr 23, 11:13 p.m.
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    I guess I was raised differently. I was raised that when a polce officer said "Stop" you stopped. Simple. If you didn't obey, you suffered the consequences. Simple. When you don't stop and you run and you wrestle a police officer for his gun, is anybody surprised if you get shot?
    - If the criminal had obeyed, we wouldn't be having this discussion. (Then again, if they had obeyed the law, the police wouldn't have bothered them.

  • Janet Ghumri Apr 23, 10:58 p.m.
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    By all means, the police should be held accountable for their actions. We also need to carry this accountability message home with us, and make sure that our children realize that they need to be accountable for their actions as well.
    Without citizen acknowledgment of their respective part, we may, inadvertently foster a climate of officers becoming hesitant to act, due to fear of possible misinterpretation, and becoming victims of the populace they are trying to protect.
    We must teach our children to handle themselves with respect towards law enforcement, and the officers need to reciprocate in kind. Situations, like the one this past February, need to stop. No innocent person should die from an officers gun

  • Byrd Ferguson Apr 23, 10:52 p.m.
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    Let's hold a rally for our law enforcement officers who keep us safe by doing their jobs in the midst of those who try to blame others for their criminal behavior. Note to criminals: Don't try to take an officer's gun- not a good idea.