Police officers dispatched to investigate a 911 hang-up last week in an Idaho suburb were surprised by the reaction they got from the mother of the children who’d been playing with the phone.
“She said, ‘I’ve told my kids not to talk to you because you’re the people who kill us,’ ” said Tracy Basterrechea, deputy police chief in Meridian, Idaho, near Boise. The mother was Hispanic and her children African-American, he said.
Police in Meridian and other cities across the country are facing an angry backlash from the public after a series of police killings of unarmed African-Americans.
Some in the law enforcement community say the incidents – and the protests that followed – are a wake-up call that should spark soul-searching among officers and drive departments to revamp training.