Shawn Maxam is just tired of Black men dying young.
There are wrongs which even the grave does not bury.
-Harriet Ann Jacobs
The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory and Jonesboro Police Department has released the autopsy report of Chavis Carter’s death, which has been officially ruled a suicide. Carter, who was 21, allegedly shot himself in the head after being handcuffed and placed in a police vehicle. The whole story is very sad and is still developing. The FBI has joined the police investigation and will perform ballistics tests on the handgun found near Carter’s body.
In a narrative that is all too familiar in America. Chavis Carter, a 21 year old African-American, died while handcuffed in the back of a police car. If that wasn’t strange enough, Carter died of an apparent gunshot wound to the head. Here’s a piece of the story from Think Progress:
The police report attributed the death to a self-inflicted gunshot, though when the two officers opened the squad car door, they found Carter’s hands were still cuffed behind his back. The gun, they said, was somehow missed in both searches.
“Any given officer has missed something on a search, be it drugs, knife, razor blades, this instance it happened to be a gun,” Jonesboro Police Sergeant Lyle Waterworth said after the bizarre incident. The police believe that Chavez managed to pull out a hidden gun and shot himself in spite of the handcuffs.
This is just another incident among many where the lives of young Black men are undervalued. Where’s the outrage? Even if the gunshot was self-inflicted, which seems preposterous, there is still some culpability that has to be attributed to Jonesboro, Arkansas police department. God forbid that Carter used this “hidden” gun to shoot one of the officers. The level of publicity and awareness of the story would be immense.
The constant and continual loss of Black life is just emotionally exhausting.
P.S. Happy Birthday to my deceased little brother Shawnel. You are sorely missed.
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