Michigan police apologize for using pictures of Black men as targets
A police department in Michigan is under criticism after a local Cub Scout troop toured the department and troop leaders discovered pictures of Black men being used as targets
After a local Cub Scout troop toured the Farmington Hills Police Department in Michigan, claims arose that the police were only using pictures of Black men as targets for shooting practice, according to WXYZ, a Detroit-based ABC affiliate.
The news: Locals are concerned about claims the Farmington Hills Police Department was only using pictures of Black men as target practice. These claims originated with a picture taken by a parent of one of the Scouts touring the shooting range at the building.
- A local attorney, Dionne Webster-Cox, was hired by the family of one of the Cub Scouts and spoke out on the incident.
- “They ordered this target — they had lots of groups, Caucasians, it was very diverse,” Cox said, per WJBK, a Fox affiliate in Detroit. “Now how is it that you ordered these, but the only ones you are actually using is the Black men?”
Police response: The police chief has since apologized for the incident but has refuted the claims that they only use pictures of Black men as targets, according to WJBK.
- “I’ll take this one on the chin,” said Farmington Hills Police Chief Jeff King during a City Council meeting, according to CNN. “I can’t overlook this, but I promise you this, this will make us stronger, this will make us better, this will make us more transparent and this community overall will come out better for this.”
- King stated that the images the department uses for target practice are consistent with the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement standards. The targets are used to “represent a mix of both threat and nonthreat targets.”
- King said 85% of the targets used for training are Caucasians, and 15% are Black, and apologized to the troop for not fully explaining the targets, per CNN.
- In response to this incident, a legal review is underway. The mayor states that all of the targets have been removed from the shooting range, according to CNN.