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Center For Popular Democracy Demands Justice For Philando Castile And Charleena Lyles


NEW YORK – The Center for Popular Democracy released the following statement from Network President and Co-Executive Director Jennifer Epps-Addison in response to the acquittal of the Minnesota police officer who killed Philando Castile and the brutal killing of Charleena Lyles, a pregnant mother shot to death by a police officer in front of her children in Seattle on Sunday:

"We are heartbroken and outraged by the news out of Minnesota and Seattle this weekend. Philando Castile and Charleena Lyles were both failed by a justice system that too often dehumanizes Black men and women, and that contributes to violence, not safety, in communities of color around the country. 

Over and over again - whether in Baltimore, Oklahoma, Cincinnati, or countless other cities across the country - police officers who have killed are left unaccountable for their deeds, while their victims' families and communities endure unspeakable and eternal trauma.

What has become clear is that the way police operate simply does not work for our country, and this weekend's tragic and infuriating events should be a wake-up call to truly rethink our frameworks for public safety and law enforcement.  

Ultimately, justice does not look like police officers getting convicted. It looks like our government putting real resources into building and sustaining our neighborhoods and cities - not punishing them. It looks like Philando Castile and Charleena Lyles being alive. 

Communities from across the country who have been torn apart by police brutality are increasingly coming together to hold law enforcement officers accountable and building power within their community to confront state violence. The Center for Popular Democracy will continue to stand in solidarity with these communities and fight for a future that respects and honors Black lives." 


Media Contact: 

Asya Pikovsky, apikovsky@populardemocracy.org207-522-2442

Anita Jain, ajain@populardemocracy.org347-636-9761