About 60 people met with District Attorney Mike Schrunk yesterday morning
(5/12) in regards to last week's shooting of Kendra James.
A wide range of community members and religious leaders shared concerns and made requests from
the DA's office. The most important and consistent message is about ensuring a fair and lawful process as this case goes to the Grand Jury sometime this week. We request that respected members of the community be allowed to observe the proceedings to ensure they are fair and legitimate. For far too many reasons to be named here, we cannot trust the police to police themselves. Many of us have personally witnessed incidences where
police act as though they are above the law, and they so often get away with it. Police violence against Portland's citizenry has even been repeatedly awarded (example: murder of Jose Mejia Poot) or excused (example: recent assualts at protests and elsewhere) not dealt with approriately under the laws that govern the rest of us.
We demand a legal system that is factual and fair to the victims of police violence and we demand proof of it. We are unable to have faith in a legal process based on the word of the Police Bureau alone. Since no Portland police officer has ever been indicted for a shooting in the line of duty, it will be impossible to believe that what happens behind closed doors is legitimate without a community representative that can verify the laws are upheld.
In order to begin building trust and addressessing the serious problems in the system, we seek community witnesses as the tragedy of Kendra's death is investigated. No matter what the results of the Grand Jury, we know
there is much to be done and that we must all work together in solidarity to make sure Kendra did not die in vain. This means our justice system and political leaders must support our requests for observers. It is not too much to
ask! (Although it is unfortunately not common practice, it HAS been done before).
You are invited to get involved now! Time is short! Contact City Hall
now to express your concerns and demand justice and an accountable
legal process! Phone numbers and emails are available at
Then, stay informed and involved for the long haul as our communities
work towards real accountabililty over the long term for inappropriate
Portland Police are directed to protect and serve, not
shoot, pepper spray, beat and harrass! We demand change!