|Photo: Courtesy of Gerald E. Rose|
On Tuesday, March 24, 2015, Smyrna Police Sergeant Kenneth Owens killed unarmed, twenty-three year old Nicholas Taft Thomas at his work in Smyrna, Ga. Smyrna and Cobb County police came to Nicholas’ job in an extreme show of force to allegedly serve a warrant for his arrest.
Letter highlights: We are concerned citizens in solidarity as the Nicholas Thomas Justice Coalition (NTJC). We are standing with the Nicholas Thomas family, asking that our fair and just demands be met within 48 hours.
Investigation of the case now by a special grand jury and special prosecutor. We do not trust any law enforcement agencies investigating themselves or their peers.
Release of the facts regarding the case, including the exact nature of the warrant being served and surveillance video footage. It has been over a month since Smyrna Police Officer Kenneth Owens killed Nicholas Thomas, and the family and community are still looking for answers. This information should have been released within the first week.
Answers to why several agencies and such a show of force were used to arrest Mr. Thomas
Long term demands:
We want an immediate end of racial profiling stops without reasonable suspicion.
We want an end to arrests without probable cause which is a violation of the Fourth Amendment.
We want immediate stop of arrests for minor and bogus offenses, including an end to practices labeled as “broken window policing”, “sweating the small stuff”, “stop and frisk”.
We want community control and oversight of police.
We want past Cobb County Police excessive force, abuse of power, and other cases reopened where
Fourth Amendment rights were potentially violated over the past ten years. We want these cases
investigated by independent agencies not connected to Cobb County.
We want new leadership of law enforcement agencies that reflect both the racial and ideological
diversity present in communities.
We want enhanced, ongoing sensitivity and diversity training for law enforcement.
The information in this post was provided by NTJC.