Washington, DC, September 18, 2017 --(PR.com
)-- Former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley has been acquitted of first-degree murder in the shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith by St. Louis Circuit Judge Timothy Wilson.
National Bar Association (NBA) President Juan R. Thomas, issued the following statement in response:
“We are saddened and appalled that yet another African American, when murdered due to excessive and deadly force by an officer sworn to uphold the Constitution, has been denied justice in death, as he was in life.
“The bench ruling, as with the act itself, is especially disturbing as we look forward to observing Constitution Day on Monday as an opportunity to reflect on the signing of this foundational document, and to remind ourselves and the next generation of the importance of honoring its tenets.
“Despite very strong evidence against Stockley, including his admitting to a recorded statement wherein he announced the intent to kill Smith, and a gun with Stockley’s DNA allegedly planted in the car, the legal system outlined in the Constitution failed to protect, and to vindicate Anthony Lamar Smith.”
The NBA calls on the Department of Justice (DOJ) Division of Civil Rights to uphold its obligation to investigate pattern and practice violations, and ensure that no federal funding goes to police departments that engage in discriminatory policing.