Target: Kenosha, Wisconsin police chief John W. Morrissey
Goal: Take down billboard with image of police officer who shot two people in 10 days.
A billboard with a large image of a cop who recently shot two citizens in 10 days, killing one, has been put up in a Wisconsin town. The officer, Pablo Torres, is still under investigation for the most recent shooting, which led to the death of 26-year-old Aaron Siler. Rather than demonstrating sensitivity to the residents of Kenosha, the police department decided to post a billboard with an image of Torres smiling with a police dog next to the text “Thank you for your support, Kenosha.”
This is extremely inappropriate considering the current controversy in the U.S. around the frequent and disturbing use of excessive and deadly force by police officers who are rarely fired or prosecuted for their actions. In Torres’ case, the first of the two recent shootings occurred when he was called in to deal with a suicidal 66-year-old veteran. Instead of helping the distressed man, Torres shot him in the stomach.
While the veteran recovers and the community mourns the death of Aaron Siler, the local police department should absolutely not be shoving giant images of the officer accused of brutality into their faces, let alone thanking the town for support that they may or may not be giving. This billboard is a monument to how tone-deaf U.S. police departments have been to the complaints of the communities they’re supposed to protect.
By signing this petition, you’ll demand that this billboard be immediately removed and urge the Kenosha Police Department to exercise better judgement while police brutality investigations are underway.
Dear Chief Morrissey,
Your police department recently put up a billboard image of Officer Pablo Torres with the text “Thank you for your support, Kenosha.” This is the same officer who shot two citizens within the span of 10 days, killing one of them. The individual who survived was a suicidal veteran who needed support and understanding, not a bullet in the stomach.
It’s extremely insensitive and inappropriate to make the people of Kenosha look at a huge smiling image of an officer who is currently under investigation for the use of unnecessary force in the death of 26-year-old Aaron Siler. You should not assume that the entire community supports you while some of your citizens are still grieving for this young man and the 66-year-old veteran is recovering from a bullet wound.
Please show some consideration and immediately remove this billboard image. If you cannot figure out how to be sensitive to your own community, it’s best that you remain silent until the investigation of Torres’ actions is complete.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: liftarn via openclipart