Target: Chief Michael Reese of the Portland Police Bureau
Goal: Stop police violence against people with mental illnesses and obtain justice for mentally ill man recently killed by police
In a recent instance of police violence against innocent people, a 23-year-old man was shot and killed by policemen. He had schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but did not have a history of violent tendencies. When the police began approaching him at night, he used a crowbar against the officers. Instead of using non-lethal tactics to subdue the man, the police immediately shot him. This particular police department has a history of overzealous use of deadly violence against mentally ill individuals, which must be stopped to protect all citizens.
The Portland Police Bureau of Portland, Oregon has had issues with police violence against mentally unstable people. In 2012, the Justice Department launched an investigation into accusations of police brutality against people with mental illnesses. Having found routine patterns of deadly shootings of mentally ill people, the Justice Department tried to reach a settlement with the police department. However, the police union refused to accept the conditions, and subsequently neglected them. Even after this most recent deadly shooting of a man with no criminal past, no agreement has been made to end the systematic bloodshed of mentally ill people. Until the reforms are enacted, more innocent people, like Nick Davis, will be shot and possibly killed by police without restraint.
Ask the Portland Police Bureau to end the violent actions against people with mental illnesses by implementing the changes provided by the Justice Department. Demand justice for Nick Davis’s death, and help ensure that his family receives adequate recompense.
Dear Chief Reese,
I recently read about Nick Davis, the 23-year-old who was shot and killed by Portland police officers. Not only had this man not committed a crime, but he had also not injured any of the officers. While this is an isolated incident, numerous cases have been brought to light that indicate systematic violence against individuals with mental illnesses. Even the Justice Department was brought in to investigate and create a deal with the Portland Police Bureau, which had to refuse the deal because of police unions.
I ask that you implement the changes proposed by the Justice Department to end the deadly violence against people with mental instabilities. Too many innocent people in and around Portland have died because of the unnecessary use of gun violence by police officers. I urge you to take immediate action in correcting your officers’ conduct in relation to people with mental illnesses, and address Nick Davis’s family and provide the adequate recompense for his causeless death.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: M. O. Stevens via Wikimedia Commons