30 Jul
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Press Release: Police Accountability and Civil Rights Groups Respond to APD Press Conference on the Killing of Larry Eugene Jackson, Jr.

Press Release: Police Accountability and Civil Rights Groups Respond to APD Press Conference on the Killing of Larry Eugene Jackson, Jr.

July 30th, 2013

Austin, TX – The media is invited to join the Austin Police Accountability Coalition and the Peaceful Streets Project in front of Austin City Hall at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday July 30th where we will issue a response to the Austin Police Department’s (Monday) press conference regarding the shooting death of Larry Eugene Jackson, Jr. by Detective Charles Kleinert.

On Friday, July 26th, Larry Eugene Jackson, Jr., a black man, walked to the Benchmark Bank and tried to gain entry several hours after that bank had been robbed by a “tall and heavy set white man.” Despite having not committed any crime, and not being told he was being detained under suspicion of committing any crime, when Jackson decided to leave, Kleinert decided to follow him, despite policy dictating otherwise.

Allegedly, Jackson ran – although a witness said he saw him “merely walking” along the sidewalk. Kleinert, instead of pursuing on foot (and why he felt he needed to is in question), commandeered a vehicle driven by a motorist that was sitting in a parking lot near the bank. The witness said Kleinert was “out of control” and did not identify himself before frantically ordering the confused motorist to drive him around. “The motorist implored Kleinert to calm down and explain what was happening, the source said,” but Kleinert merely yelled, “Go! Go! Go!” When Kleinert identified Jackson, “who the source said was merely walking along the sidewalk,” Kleinert yelled “there he is!” before jumping out of the car to chase after Jackson. The shaken motorist quickly left and called 911 to report what they must have thought was a crime in progress – perpetrated by the “police officer.”

Underneath the bridge, Assistant Police Chief Brian Manley claims a scuffle ensued. Jackson ended up dead, shot once in the back of the neck by Detective Kleinert. Manley also implied the shooting may have been accidental, as if they don’t know yet whether it was. Possible? If APD didn’t issue a “hearing” on Friday following the shooting, then Kleinert may not have had to tell APD his side of the story yet. According to the City’s Meet & Confer contract with the Austin Police Association (just renewed, as it is done every five years), officers have 48 hours in which they don’t have to talk about any use of force incident – triggered by APD calling a hearing for the investigation. He may not have talked to them yet if they failed to issue the notice, and has even more time to create a tale to cover up his policy infractions based on some serious mistakes he made in assessing a public safety threat and resolving conflict as he was trained.

Debbie Russell of the Austin Police Accountability Coalition: “I didn’t think there could be a worse tale of APD misconduct and cover up after the shooting of Nathaniel Sanders, II (someone asleep in a car with no gun in hand and only awake for 4 seconds before shot in the back of the head)…then I didn’t think anything could top the unjust killing of Byron Carter, Jr. (a passenger in a vehicle not having committed any crime attempting to flee armed men not identifying themselves as police-also shot in the back of the head). But this is beyond the pale! An unarmed black man chased down and killed based on what one officer believed he might do, sometime in the future.”

Antonio Buehler of the Peaceful Streets Project: “It is remarkable that every time an APD officer commits a felony crime, that APD comes out and blames the victim of police violence. Cops know that pedestrians have a right to walk (or run) away from police if they are not being legally detained, so APD’s claim that it is “not a good idea to run from police” is nothing more than a diversion tactic to take the focus off of the killer cop and apply it to the deceased. Further, APD has a history of slandering the dead to protect their cops. APD suggesting that Jackson was at the bank to “defraud” them suggests that APD has prophetic wisdom into the future actions of the people they kill.”


Nelson Linder of the NAACP-Austin: “This needs to be an issue among our government. They can’t be silent while these types of shootings continue in our city,” Linder said. “It is too rampant, it’s too racial and these type so things happen too often. These are senseless shootings we know for a fact need to stop.”

Jim Harrington, director of the Texas Civil Rights Project: “We cannot tolerate this constant use of deadly force. People should not have to fear for their lives when they are in a parking lot, stopped for a traffic offense, or go to the bank.”


So, what do you think?