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T-Pain’s niece’s suspected murderer found dead in Tallahassee
A man suspected of murdering rapper T-Pain's niece last summer has been found dead in Tallahassee, Fla., police say.

Law enforcement officials came across the body of Tavon Jackson, 25, in the woods Tuesday during an unrelated search in the area for a separate case, the Tallahassee Police Department revealed in a statement.

The department's Violent Crimes and Forensic Units have launched an investigation, but police officials say Jackson's death appeared to be a suicide. They noted the investigation remains in the early stages.

Police had been searching for Jackson since August in connection to the killing of 23-year-old Javona Glover, who was stabbed to death outside a West Tallahassee Walgreens store, where she worked.

T-Pain, who was Glover's uncle, urged his followers to help police locate the killer after his niece's untimely death.

"The police are still lookin for the coward ass n----r that just killed my niece at Walgreens in Tallahassee. If you got info pls help out," the rapper, whose real name is Faheem Rashad Najm, tweeted in August.

Authorities released three photos of the suspect inside the Walgreens shortly after Glover's death.

Jackson was Glover’s ex-boyfriend, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
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Peter Sblendorio Feb-22-2017 28 0
A man suspected of murdering rapper T-Pain's niece last summer has been found dead in Tallahassee, Fla., police say.

Law enforcement officials came across the body of Tavon Jackson, 25, in the woods Tuesday during an unrelated search in the area for a separate case, the Tallahassee Police Department revealed in a statement.

The department's Violent Crimes and Forensic Units have launched an investigation, but police officials say Jackson's death appeared to be a suicide. They noted the investigation remains in the early stages.

Police had been searching for Jackson since August in connection to the killing of 23-year-old Javona Glover, who was stabbed to death outside a West Tallahassee Walgreens store, where she worked.

T-Pain, who was Glover's uncle, urged his followers to help police locate the killer after his niece's untimely death.

"The police are still lookin for the coward ass n----r that just killed my niece at Walgreens in Tallahassee. If you got info pls help out," the rapper, whose real name is Faheem Rashad Najm, tweeted in August.

Authorities released three photos of the suspect inside the Walgreens shortly after Glover's death.

Jackson was Glover’s ex-boyfriend, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.

GRIO Feb-21-2017 74 0
Eric Holder, the former US attorney general, has been hired by Uber in order to investigate claims that were made over the weekend by a female employee who alleged that she had been subject to sexual harassment and discrimination.

Susan Fowler Rigetti claimed that during the year that she spent working or Uber, she and other female employees reported multiple instances of harassment and discrimination to the company’s human resources department, to no avail.

She reported that after she began working for the company, she started to receive messages from a manager who said that he was in an “open relationship” and who began to make advances toward her. However, she later learned that other woman had received similar messages.

“It was such a blatant lie that there was really nothing I could do. There was nothing any of us could do. We all gave up on Uber HR and our managers after that,” wrote Rigetti.

Chief executive Travis Kalanick responded to these allegations on Monday by saying that a review would be conducted in “short order.”

“What is driving me through all this is a determination that we take what’s happened as an opportunity to heal wounds of the past and set a new standard for justice in the workplace,” Kalanick wrote in a memo to employees.

Holden Walter-Warner Feb-18-2017 79 0
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott is one of the most talented players in the NFL, which could make him a potential target for trouble.

He seemed to be bringing the trouble on Friday night and TMZ released a video of Elliott allegedly being detained in the town of his Ohio State Buckeyes.

But Elliott took to social media on Saturday morning to deny TMZ's report.

I was never "detained" by the police. Nor was I ever questioned or in any type of trouble. ?
— Ezekiel Elliott (@EzekielElliott) February 18, 2017
The man in the video clearly looks like Ezekiel Elliott and the police are definitely looking at/for something in a car, but it doesn't go any further than that. It does not appear that he is being detained.

More accounts of the interaction between Elliott and the police will surely emerge, but for now, it appears Elliott's run-in with the police was nothing more than a run of the mill exchange.

Jessica Schladebeck Feb-17-2017 94 0
An Amtrak police officer has been charged with first-degree murder afterfatally shooting an unarmed Minnesota man in Chicago earlier this month.

Amtrak Officer LaRoyce Tankson turned himself into authorities late Thursday night, WCCO reported. He’s scheduled to appear in court for a bond hearing Friday afternoon.

Chad Robertson, 25, was on his way home from a Memphis wedding with two of his friends when he was shot by Tankson.

Robertson and his travel companions were waiting out an hour-long layover in Chicago’s Union Station when Tankson and another officer approached them in an “aggressive” manner, according to a federal lawsuit filed by Robertson’s family.

When the trio walked outside to find a restaurant, they were followed by the transit police who accused them of smoking marijuana before searching Robertson and his friends. That’s when Robertson “feared for his life and started running,” according to the suit cited by the Chicago Sun Times.

Chad Robertson, 25, shown with his family, was shot by an Amtrak police officer in Chicago on Feb. 8. (Handout)

LaRoyce “calmly dropped to one knee, removed his gloves, unsecured his weapon” and fired off a first shot that missed, and then followed up with a second one that struck Robertson in the back.
The officer gave no commands but “calmly stated, ‘It’s a gun out. It’s a gun out.’”

The 25-year-old father of two was taken to Stroger Hospital in critical condition and died Wednesday, about a week after he was shot. Doctors were unable to remove the bullet from his spine, so he spent his final days as a quadriplegic.

Police told the Sun Times Robertson was carrying cash and drugs when he was shot, but no weapon was ever found.

The family’s attorney, Doug Hopson, said Robertson had “an insignificant” amount of marijuana on him, but had no criminal record.

Robertson’s death came a day after his family filed a federal lawsuit on his behalf, against both Amtrak and the officer who shot him. Hopson said “a wrongful death component” has also been added to suit.

Reena Flores Feb-16-2017 92 0
President Trump’s freewheeling press White House press conference Thursday -- in which he announced his new labor secretary pick -- also included an awkward exchange on race, after a reporter asked him about his policies to improve inner cities.

“You go to some of the inner city places and it’s so sad when you look at the crime,” the president said. He went on to describe how people “lock themselves into apartments petrified to even leave in the middle of the day” in urban areas for fear of crime in the cities.

Journalist April Ryan, who serves as the White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief for American Urban Radio Networks, followed up: “When you say the inner cities, are you going to include the CBC, Mr. President, in your conversations with your urban agenda?”

When Mr. Trump seemed unfamiliar with the “CBC” acronym, Ryan, who is black, clarified: “Are you going to include the Congressional Black Caucus -- “

The president interrupted: “Well I would. I’d tell you what -- do you want to set up the meeting?
“Do you want to set up the meeting?” the president pressed again. “Are they friends of yours?”
Ryan emphatically shook her head and said, “No, no, no, I’m just a reporter...I know some of them but --”

“No, get us -- set up the meeting,” he urged. “Let’s go, set up the meeting, I would love to meet with the black caucus - the Congressional Black caucus.”
The CBC tweeted at Mr. Trump after the news conference.

President Trump went on to say he had once had a scheduled meeting with Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, who is a senior member of the Congressional Black Caucus.

“Every day I walked in and said I would like to meet with him, because I do want to solve the problem,” Mr. Trump said. “But he probably was told by [Senate Minority Leader Chuck] Schumer or somebody like that … he was probably told don’t meet with Trump. It’s bad politics.”  
“I was all set to have the meeting,” he said.

But Rep. Cummings, a Democrat, pushed back against the president’s claims in a short statement immediately after the news conference.

“I have no idea why President Trump would make up a story about me like he did today. Of course, Sen. Schumer never told me to skip a meeting with the President,” Cummings wrote Thursday. 
“I was actually looking forward to meeting with the President about the skyrocketing price of prescription drugs,” he said, adding that he looks “forward to meeting with [Mr. Trump] on this issue and others.



Eric Levenson Feb-15-2017 135 0
Those who knew Mike Ilitch, the Little Caesars founder and Detroit Tigers owner who died last Friday, have spent the past few days fondly remembering his impact on friends, on Detroit residents, and on the sports community.

Ilitch also had an impact on the daily life of one of the most iconic figures from the civil rights movement.

For more than a decade, Ilitch had quietly paid for Rosa Parks' apartment in downtown Detroit, according to CNN affiliate WXYZ.

That story came to light thanks to Damon Keith, a Detroit native and federal judge.

"They don't go around saying it, but I want to, at this point, let them know, how much the Ilitches not only meant to the city, but they meant so much for Rosa Parks, who was the mother of the civil rights movement," Keith told WXYZ.

Shortly after her famed defiance of segregation sparked the Montgomery, Alabama, bus boycott, Parks moved to Detroit and became an important presence in the city for years afterward.
But in 1994, Parks was robbed and assaulted in her home at the age of 81.

Keith, himself an important legal figure in the civil rights movement, worked to find Parks a new, safer apartment at the Riverfront Apartments in Detroit, according to the Sports Business Daily.
Ilitch read the story in the newspaper and called Keith, offering to pay for Parks' housing indefinitely. With no fanfare, Ilitch continued paying for the apartment until Parks died in 2005, Keith said.
The entire episode was made public in 2014 in a story from Sports Business Daily. Keith even showed the reporter a copy of a 1994 check for $2,000 from Little Caesars Enterprises to Riverfront Apartments.

It has taken on a new life in light of Ilitch's death on Friday at the age of 87.
Michigan Lt. Gov. Brian Calley posted on Facebook a link to an article on the subject on Friday. "It will give you a sense of the kind of man Mike Ilitch was," he wrote.

The Parks' donation further shows Ilitch's commitment to Detroit, where he was born and raised. Ilitch established Little Caesars headquarters there, owned the Detroit Tigers and Red Wings, and helped usher in a new era for the city, Keith told WXYZ.

"You'll never discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. Mike and (his wife) Marian had the courage to lose sight of the shore and discover new oceans," Keith said.
"They kept pushing Detroit, and had it not been for them, I am saying, Detroit would not be in the renaissance that they're in now."

Stephen Rex Brown Feb-15-2017 87 0
The former judge who famously blocked Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s soda ban was sued Tuesday for a car crash that left his passenger with “serious injuries.”

Milton Tingling, who now serves as the Manhattan County Clerk, was stopped at an off-ramp of Harlem River Dr. near the Polo Ground Houses on Oct. 15 when a 2014 Jeep crashed into his 2011 Hyundai, according to papers filed in the courthouse Tingling oversees.

The passenger in Tingling’s vehicle, Cornelius Wells, 65, was stepping out of the car when the crash occurred — and suffered ankle and shoulder injuries, according to court papers.

The drivers were "careless and reckless," the suit says.

Tingling's tenure as clerk of court has not been without controversy.

In December, a federal judge ordered him to give the public quick access to newly filed civil lawsuits following complaints he was withholding them for days.

The Daily News exclusively reported last September that Tingling had pulled documents pertaining to then-presidential candidate Donald Trump’s divorce from Ivana Trump without a judge's order.

Messages to Tingling were not returned Tuesday.

The driver of the Jeep, Steven Nealy, was also sued and could not be reached for comment.

In 2013, Tingling, then a judge, ruled the Board of Health did not have the authority to push through Bloomberg's soda ban.

"Judge Tingling is known to be a fair man. The fact that he's a defendant in his own courthouse should not affect the outcome," said Wells’ lawyer Mark Seitelman.

Feb-12-2017 124 0
Legendary jazz singer Al Jarreau has passed away at age 76, his representatives said on Sunday. Jarreau, a seven-time Grammy winner, was known for hits like "Mornin'" and "We're in This Love Together". He was still touring last week when he abruptly cancelled his remaining performances, citing exhaustion. Representatives said he was hospitalized in Los Angeles and "improving slowly".
His family told TMZ that Jarreau had sung to nurses during his hospital stay. He would have turned 77 next month.

Jarreau had been in a hospital in Los Angeles and was "improving slowly," according to the statement on his site..

Jarreau died at 5:30 a.m. PT Sunday, according to a statement from his manager Joe Gordon published by Ebony. Gordon said in lieu of flowers or gifts, Jarreau's family requested contributions be made to the Wisconsin Foundation for School Music.

Jarreau received a lifetime achievement award from the foundation last fall and an endowment to benefit Milwaukee Public School children needing financial assistance for music programs was established in his name.

First singing at church and PTA meetings when he was 4 or 5, Jarreau told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel it was at Lincoln High School where "my love of music and singing really deepened. I began to have ideas of taking this as far as it could go. And I kept dreaming that dream and nourishing that dream."

He took that dream exceptionally far. Jarreau has 20 albums to his name and is the only Grammy vocalist to win in the jazz, pop and R&B categories. He performed 50 concerts last year, including at the White House, and was a joyful presence in concert, evident by an exuberant homecoming show at the Northern Lights Theater at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino in 2015.

Jarreau is survived by his wife, Susan, and son Ryan.


Jason Silverstein Feb-12-2017 119 0
The U.S. Department of Education needs to bone up on black history — and spelling.

The Education Department, now led by the historically unpopular Betsy Devos, on Sunday tweeted a tribute to the African-American writer and civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois — and spelled his name wrong.

The tweet featured a quote from him — “Education must not simply teach work — it must teach life” — and credited it to “W.E.B. DeBois.”

More than two hours later, the tweet remained unchanged.

“Welp, this is a foreshadowing of what #BetsyDeVos is going to usher in @usedgov,” Khary Penebaker, a former Democratic congressional candidate in Wisconsin, tweeted in response.


Du Bois, who died in 1963, was the first African-American to earn a doctorate degree from Harvard University. He went on to co-found the NAACP, lead the Niagara Movement for civil rights and write prolifically about racism and social issues.

This was one of the first tweets from the department since DeVos, one of the Trump’s most controversial cabinet picks, took over as secretary. A charter school advocate who struggled to discuss public education in Senate hearings, DeVos was confirmed only after Vice President Pence cast a tie-breaking vote — the first time a vice president has ever had to do so for a cabinet pick.

The Department of Education has been tweeting tributes to black icons through February to celebrate Black History Month — and thus far, the other tweets have been error-free.

The Trump administration has faced mockery through February for its apparent ignorance about black history. Trump referred to Frederick Douglass, an abolitionist who has been dead for more than 120 years, as “an example of somebody who has done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more.”

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tried to defend Trump’s remark, but only cast more doubt on whether they knew who Douglass was — or whether he’s alive.

“I think he wants to highlight the contributions (Douglas) has made,” Spicer said in a daily briefing.

“And I think through a lot of the actions and statements (Trump is) going to make, I think that the contributions of Frederick Douglass will become more and more.”

Trump chose only one black person for his cabinet — Dr. Ben Carson, who was nominated to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development despite having no prior experience with housing or urban policy.

ap Feb-10-2017 118 0
Four black people charged with a hate crime in an attack on a white mentally disabled man that was shown live on Facebook have pleaded not guilty.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that assistant public defenders for each of the four entered the pleas on Friday. They have been in custody since early January. At their first hearing, a judge called them a danger to society and refused to allow them to post bail.

The case gained international attention because the attack was captured by a cellphone camera and shown on Facebook Live. On the video, the suspects are seen beating the schizophrenic victim and can be heard taunting him and shouting profanities against white people and then-President-elect Donald Trump.

The four also face aggravated kidnapping and other charges.

AP Feb-10-2017 102 0
A former Bethune-Cookman University football player has been found not guilty of charges related to a campus gunfight that injured three students.

Jurors on Wednesday acquitted Ladell Pleasure. He was charged with discharging a firearm on school property and principal to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

Authorities said Pleasure, a walk-on defensive end, was one of two gunmen who exchanged fire across a school parking lot in February 2015.

A prosecution witness had identified Pleasure, but a defense attorney presented surveillance video, which was not clear enough to identify the shooter, that showed the witness looking away from the shooter.

Pleasure said he plans to go back to school, though not at Bethune-Cookman. He still plans to pursue a career in the National Football League.

Feb-10-2017 136 0
While dining in Sammy’s Grill in Baton Rouge Louisiana one patron overheard a judge spew racist comments about a woman. When Judge Mike Erwin saw man sharing his seat with a Black woman in the crowded restaurant, he allegedly said, “You should have made her get her fat n****r ass up.”

On February 3, Baton Rouge resident Kaneitra Johnson witnessed the ordeal and made a public Facebook post over the weekend that recounted the story.

“I’m halfway on the seat and the Lyft driver is on the other half of the seat,” Johnson said. “Then he asked for his jacket. All of a sudden I hear this older man behind me tell the Lyft driver, ‘You never give up your seat for a n*gger.’”

Johnson said the man continued, “You should have made her get her fat n*gger a** up.”

Eventually the police were called and questioned the older man who made the comments. Johnson later learned the racist man was Judge Mike Erwin of Louisiana’s 19th Judicial District Court

According to Johnson’s post, no action by police or Sammy’s was taken against Erwin.

However, when Sammy’s grill manager Andy McKay, who was absent that evening, was made aware of the situation, he took matters into his own hand.

“I wasn’t there that night, so I can’t comment on the details, but I know police were called,” McKay told The Root. “I can also tell you that the owner, Sammy Nagem, has made it clear that Judge Erwin is no longer welcome here.

“We will refuse his business,” McKay added.

While working for the 19th Judicial District Court, Erwin has frequently been in control of the outcomes for many Black men and women. For him to use such vile language about Black people means his abilities as a judge should be questioned.

AP Feb-10-2017 109 0
The Ohio prisons agency has launched an internal investigation after an inmate was strangled while riding in a transport van with other prisoners and guards inside.

The Ross County Coroner's Office has identified the slain inmate as 61-year-old David Johnson.

Authorities say the killing happened Feb. 1. Johnson's body was discovered after the van arrived at the Ross County Correctional Institution in Chillicothe (chihl-ih-KAHTH'-ee) following a trip to Columbus for inmate medical care.

Prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith said Tuesday that a prison review team is looking both at the slaying and the agency's inmate transportation policies.

The Ross Country Prosecutor's Office has said guards apparently can't see inmates once they're loaded into the van.

>>--More Black Legal News

Daryl K. Washington Jan-15-2017 1053 0
In such a very short time, many are clearing their memories of how Donald Trump mocked a handicap individual, disrespected candidates, women, the media and anyone else who does not agree with him. Donald Trump has insulted women, called them by names other than their own, has disrespected President Obama and most recently insulted Civil Rights Icon, John Lewis. Despite his despicable behavior, many are of the mindset that we must meet with Donald Trump or risk being left out. Until Donald Trump proves this country wrong, I stand with the Honorable John Lewis.

Has Trump announced that he is cutting back major programs President Obama put in place specifically for black people? Some people are behaving as if Trump is now our savior and if we do not bow down to him he will not help us. If the problems in our communities were so bad and needed so much attention, why weren't people lined up the last 8 years to discuss these problems with President Obama?

Trump has succeeded in making people afraid and now some are living in fear. Trump said in his campaign speech that nothing had been done for the black communities in the last 8 years so what do we have to lose. Trump said he would change things and now people are saying we need to meet with Mr.Trump so that he can keep his promise. That alone really makes it appear as if President Obama did nothing for the black communities and Trump was right. Listen, we have to stop depending on the Government and do for ourselves. When you depend on a large machine like the Government it controls you. When something controls you it can destroy you.

Many of the colleges in Louisiana and throughout the U.S. are now dealing with financial issues because of the budget cuts. Most of the colleges are dependent on the Government to survive because of the little support from the communities and believe me that is a recipe for disaster. Have you ever wondered why Asians and other races are not lined up to meet with Trump? It's because they support their own businesses and circulate the dollars within their own communities so they are not as dependent on the Government. We don't need Trump. We need each other. You guys running behind Trump will make him look like the savior he say he is and as a result he will most certainly be in office for the next 8 years. This country is in the best shape it's ever been in for a very long time and will only get better because of the things President Obama put into place. The thing is, Donald Trump will get credit for it all. We will survive, especially if we begin to support each other.

Daryl K. Washington is an attorney located in Dallas, Texas. His practice includes Civil Rights Law, Sports and Entertainment, Litigation (Personal Injury and Commercial) and Business Transactions. You can reach Daryl by email at dwashington@dwashlawfirm.com or you can visit his website at www.dwashlawfirm.com. To receive updates, go to the Black Legal Issues page on Facebook and check the like button.
Daryl K. Washington Sep-20-2016 499 0
One must applaud the efforts and courage of Colin Kaepernick despite all of the negative criticism he’s received from the media, from fans, from athletes, current and former, and from certain owners of professional teams. Some have questioned his sincerity and others have questioned his methods but what many have failed to do is take notice of his message. Kaepernick has voiced on a number of occasions the reason for his peaceful protest yet many have failed to comprehend it.

What Kaepernick has done for the Movement is sparked conversation but many do not want to listen. He used his platform to bring attention to the injustices that are occurring on a daily basis yet an unarmed black man was shot in Tulsa, Oklahoma while he held both hands in the air for the world to see.

One has to wonder if this would have occurred if there was more unity on the issues that Kaepernick brought to the forefront. One has to wonder if this would have happened if every professional athlete would have stood in solidarity. One has to wonder if this would have happened if Jerry Jones allowed his athletes to exercise their Constitutional rights. One has to wonder if this would have happened if all of the National Organizations would have issued press releases making their support of Kaepernick known to all. One has to wonder if this would have happened if the media was not so fast to label all police officers as heroes. One has to wonder if this would have happened if the officers who murdered Mr. Sterling and Mr. Castile were in jail today.

Colin Kaepernick, did what many have accused athletes of not doing; he took a stance. He pledged One Million dollars to the cause but how many more came in support of his efforts? I would like to believe if more people would have come out in support of Colin Kaepernick, Mr. Crutcher would still be alive today. Colin Kaepernick took a knee and challenged everyone else to do so but instead of focusing on the message, people focused on the National Anthem. When the message is ignored the problems will persist. There is a National Stage. The time is now to bring a plan forward. Stop questioning his method and give him the support he needs. Two weeks ago, two young ladies were wrongfully arrested while eating at a Whataburger in San Antonio, Texas. A few days later, a 13 year old boy was shot multiple times by a police officer. On last week, the officer who killed Eric Garner received a bonus to bring his pay to $120,000. Now, we witnessed the shooting of an unarmed black man but there are those who still don’t get the message. Why? Colin Kaepernick has not received the full support he needs.

Colin Kaepernick took a knee but many have not been there to lift him up. This is not Colin’s problem, it’s everyone’s problem. If you can demand that people stand in solidarity during the playing of the National Anthem, you most certainly should demand that everyone stand in solidarity when there are injustices. Don’t leave it up to one person to do it all alone. We must up take a knee and move forward with a plan.

Daryl K. Washington is an attorney located in Dallas, Texas. His practice includes Civil Rights Law, Sports and Entertainment, Litigation (Personal Injury and Commercial) and Business Transactions. You can reach Daryl by email at dwashington@dwashlawfirm.com or you can visit his website at www.dwashlawfirm.com. To receive updates, go to the Black Legal Issues page on Facebook and check the like button.


Daryl K. Washington Jul-14-2016 845 0
I had the pleasure to witness four NBA superstars issuing a “Call to Action” to the thousands of athletes who were in attendance at the ESPY Awards. It was the moment I waited on for so long because I personally know the influence professional athletes have on society. They have the platform and the power to demand change. We saw the immediate change that occurred when athletes at Grambling State University, Missouri and the Los Angeles Clippers, to name a few, decided to take a stance. Athletes have the power, the platform and the support to make a difference but should they have to do it alone?

As a civil rights attorney I’ve had the opportunity to attend a number of protests throughout the U.S. I’ve attended rallies and marches where some of my closest friends lived but as I thought about it, I generally did not get to see any of them until after the events were over. I recently received confirmation that there is a perception that the only individuals out marching are the victims’ families, individuals from the communities we moved away from or individuals who are wrongfully labeled as troublemakers. What really confirmed it for me was when it was stated that “men should get off the protest lines and instead fill out job applications.” I know that comment can be taken many ways but the way I took it was that men who are out protesting do not have jobs. The sad reality of it all is the reason statements like that can be made is because many who have been blessed to obtain multiple degrees, fortunate to be employed by major organizations, live in the nice neighborhoods, drive the fancy cars, have the IRA’s and are living what is considered the American Dream will not get involved with the movement out of the fear of losing it all yet those same people have the audacity to call out athletes.

Here is the bottom line. This movement cannot be placed on the backs of a few. Until organizations see their star players out in the communities voicing their concerns, they will think the injustices are acceptable. I know it shocked the conscious of America to see Trauma surgeon Brian Williams publicly share his fear of police officers. There were many who probably thought “how dare a doctor make such comments” and I’m sure Dr. Williams understood that there was some risks involved in making his comments but I'm sure he realized that many would listen if he spoke. His comments needed to be made because America now sees that this problem does not only exist in what many call the hood. Many now understand that for black and brown people the hood is America and we are not safe anywhere.

Just recently I was traveling to conduct depositions. I guess because I had on a suit and was sitting in First Class (I had an upgrade because of mileage) the white gentleman sitting next to me perhaps was of the opinion that I was not concerned about what was going on in the black communities. Little did he know why I was traveling and what I fight for on a daily basis. He had the audacity to say he could not understand why people were so upset about the incident in Baton Rouge given the background of Alvin Sterling. My response to him was when an officer decides to use excessive force against a black or brown person, in most cases they do not know the name of the person or whether they have a criminal background. Only one thing is seen; the color of the person’s skin. They know in most cases that the law and media have been on their side so there is no fear of killing because there will be plenty of support for them. By the time our flight landed he admitted that his own personal biases had not allowed him to look beyond a certain point but because we discussed it, he now had a clearer picture.

I say all of the above to emphasize that athletes are not the only individuals with the power and platform to demand change. There are Black Presidents, CEO’s, Coaches, CPA's, CFO’s, Managers, Politicians, Directors and future stars of large corporations who also have the platforms. There are Black doctors, nurses, dentists, lawyers, pilots, flight attendants, scientists, engineers, sales professionals, educators, business owners, entertainers, etc. who also have the platforms and power to make a change. It’s time that we gave our brothers and sisters, who are out fighting for justice on a daily basis, the help and support they truly need. I can assure you that should you become the victim of police brutality in your nice neighborhoods or fired from you nice jobs, you will then understand the value of being a part of groups that fight for change. We all need to be out protesting so that the victims’ families can properly grieve. We are in this current state of chaos because so many believe it’s not their problem. Just remember, we are in our positions because someone fought for us.

Daryl K. Washington is an attorney located in Dallas, Texas. His practice includes Civil Rights Law, Sports and Entertainment, Litigation (Personal Injury and Commercial) and Business Transactions. You can reach Daryl by email at dwashington@dwashlawfirm.com or you can visit his website at www.dwashlawfirm.com. To receive updates, go to the Black Legal Issues page on Facebook and check the like button.
Daryl K. Washington Jun-24-2016 871 0
On yesterday the officer responsible for the incident in McKinney, Texas was not indicted for the assault on the young teenager that was seen all over the U.S. Also, on yesterday one of the officers in the Freddie Gray case was acquitted. As expected, my timeline on Facebook was flooded with posts from individuals talking about the injustices that take place throughout the U.S. One of my good friends, who is like a brother to me, even blamed attorneys for the injustices throughout the U.S. Generally, I do not comment on these type of issues but because it's Friday I would like to give everyone who this may apply to something to think about.

When is the last time you attended a judicial debate or even contacted an attorney to inquire about a judicial candidate or a DA to see if they had the proper temperament to serve? When is the last time you attended a rally or demanded that a DA present all of the evidence to the grand jury? When is the last time you took a day off from work to support the families who sons or daughters were wrongfully gunned down by a police officer? When is the last time you packed a courthouse to support a family you did not know? When is the last time you sent a letter to the family of a deceased offering your support, financially or emotionally? When is the last time you contacted your local city council member and asked them what they are doing to address the issue of police brutality and police misconduct?

I could go on and on with this but just know, the system will continue as is unless we become proactive and stop being so reactive. This system knows that people will get excited about an incident but once the media is gone, so is the support. As a Civil Rights attorney, I know who is putting it all on the line to bring about change. I know the people who are talking to the DA's, to the Chiefs of Police of various cities, to the city attorneys and others trying to save lives and/or bring about change. I know my friends who attend meetings when I'm in their cities trying to bring about change. It seems like an easy and at times, prestigious job but to be honest, it can be a lonely job. Many nights when most people are sleeping, I find myself in deep thoughts wondering if I could get the thousands of people I know to stand behind us in this fight, a major difference could be made.

Creating the wonderful posts on Facebook help bring attention to issues of injustice but we have to be consistent with our support. One million people strong can take a day off from work with very short notice to attend the CAVS victory parade but let a demonstration for the wrongful death of an unarmed black man or woman be planned and the hardest thing to do is get people to agree on a date or better yet, take off a day to show their support. I know many may not understand how deep this problem truly is but until you step out in the heat and show your support, you may want to stop some of the blaming. Just remember, there will not be change until we all change. Real support is needed to stop the injustices that are occurring throughout the U.S. Let's all come together to bring about a change in this country.

Daryl K. Washington is an attorney located in Dallas, Texas. His practice includes Civil Rights Law, Sports and Entertainment, Litigation (Personal Injury and Commercial) and Business Transactions. You can reach Daryl by email at dwashington@dwashlawfirm.com or you can visit his website at www.dwashlawfirm.com. To receive updates, go to the Black Legal Issues page on Facebook and check the like button.
Daryl K. Washington Nov-11-2015 13787 0
For years the question whether college athletes should be paid has been debated over and over only to be kicked down by legal rulings. The NCAA, the television networks, the media and large colleges have all profited off of the backs of primarily Black athletes, while the only colleges that would accept them are being forced to shut down because of a lack of resources. College coaches are earning millions of dollars per season, have large endorsement deals and live in upscale neighborhoods while college athletes, many who come from low income families, are penalize for accepting a meal from a booster, can’t afford to take a date out to dinner or a movie and can only wish that their families could afford to sit in the stands occupied by many who will not speak to them or support them after their college careers are over.

I’ve said on numerous occasions that in order for there to be a change within the system, the ones with the power would have to do something drastic. Two years ago the Grambling State University football team decided to stage a protest because of the lack of equipment and the conditions of Grambling’s facilities. Although I hated to see it come down to that, I understood their frustrations and realized that we were witnessing the beginning of a new movement. The day had come for college athletes to realize that they have as much power as professional athletes, to demand change.

Two years later, the football players at the University of Missouri made a bold statement that will have an everlasting impact on college sports. They walked away from a game they love to support their fellow students. They have now shown athletes at other schools the power they have when they join together in solidarity. As a result, the NCAA’s biggest fear just came to reality. There was not going to be any change or progress at the University of Missouri until the individuals responsible for generating a large share of the revenue said “Enough is Enough.” Within a few days of their walk-out, President Tim Wolfe and Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin, the top administrator of the Columbia campus, announced their resignation. That's power.

The NCAA has long made the issues with college athletes, a legal one. The NCAA created rules that prevent athletes from earning a living until after they’ve made everyone else rich. College athletes are required to sign over all of their rights in exchange for a scholarship and cannot earn one single dime to support a parent who is sometimes forced to work two jobs and in some cases still don't have the resources to attend a game. LSU’s superstar Leonard Fournette is being questioned about a business venture his family started before his college career really took off. Now that he’s signed away his rights, it’s being frowned upon by the individuals who were earn millions off of him. In other words, we the NCAA and LSU own his rights. The system is old, is broken and it’s unfair. Schools like LSU and Alabama earn over $70 million per year off of football but the players receive $0. The coaches earn over $3 million per season but the players earn $0.

I'm predicting that we are a season or two away from college athletes staging one of the largest boycotts in college sports because they have come to realize that the power is in their hands. The Missouri football players did not have to miss one single game to get what they demanded but the fight is far from over. Today, the students in Missouri are being faced with the harsh reality of the racist society we still live in. They should be preparing for exams but instead they are fearing for their lives. One hundred thousand fans will cheer on black athletes on Saturdays but many will criticize their efforts and make fun of them on Monday morning. I applaud the efforts of our college athletes. It makes me feel good to see that Our future generation will not stop fighting the fight that many started years ago. We can only pray that one day we will be able to take off the gloves. Until that time, the fight must go on so that the future generation can experience what Dr. King died for many years ago; True equality for everyone.

Daryl K. Washington is an attorney located in Dallas, Texas. His practice includes Civil Rights Law, Sports and Entertainment, Litigation (Personal Injury and Commercial) and Business Transactions. You can reach Daryl by email at dwashington@dwashlawfirm.com or you can visit his website at www.dwashlawfirm.com. To receive updates, go to the Black Legal Issues page on Facebook and check the like button.
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