The Rev. Al Sharpton on Monday paid a passionate tribute to Dexter Wade, a 37-year-old black man who was run over by an off-duty police officer in Jackson, Mississippi and buried in a potter’s field without his family’s knowledge. did. .
“What happened to Dexter is a disgrace, a national outrage, and should be treated as such,” Sharpton told New Horizon Church International. “It’s time for the Mayor and City Council to stand up for Dexter. How do you explain how a young man was going to be buried? An autopsy found that he had a state ID in his front pocket. He had a driver’s license, but they couldn’t find his mother? Couldn’t they find his loved one? They put him in the morgue and buried him. Is that so?”
Mr Sharpton said he plans to remain involved until all those involved in Mr Wade’s death have been prosecuted, adding that the person who confronted Mr Wade may have been his own son.
“His life mattered to his mother and daughters, and we’re going to make it matter throughout this county.”
Wade was struck and killed by an off-duty police officer in a Jackson police vehicle on March 5.
Wade’s mother, Bettersten Wade, reported her son missing to authorities a week after his death, and an independent autopsy last week showed Wade suffered fatal injuries. Wade’s family was not informed of their son’s whereabouts, although a photo ID with his address was found inside his jeans. Died until August.
At that point, Wade was already buried in a field near the Hinds County Penal Ground.
Mr Sharpton said the family has now been told that it was a black police officer who ran over Wade, but stressed that doesn’t matter and blames Wade’s death for being severely assaulted by five black police officers. Comparisons were made to the death of Tire Nichols, a black man who died. Police officer in Memphis, Tennessee.
“I don’t care if he’s black or white,” Sharpton said. “What he did was wrong and they need to be held accountable. In fact, I’m more upset that he’s black, because you wouldn’t do that to a young white man. Mississippi. It would be wiser for the state to keep beating up young white men and burying them in Potter’s field. They would be inclined to say that they could not do that to this Negro.”
After Wade’s body was exhumed last week, civil rights attorney Ben Crump released the first results of an independent autopsy.
According to the report, Wade’s body was completely hit by a police vehicle and suffered multiple blunt force injuries to his skull, ribs and pelvis, and his left leg was amputated. The body was also severely decomposed as it had not been properly embalmed.
Crump, who represents Wade’s family, issued a call for action after Monday’s funeral.
“This is trying to get to the truth,” he said. “With transparency and truth, we can achieve accountability and justice in Mississippi.”
Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said last month that the time it took for Wade’s family to be notified was an “unfortunate and tragic accident,” but both Crump and Sharpton said the court He asked the department to investigate the Jackson Police Department. Sharpton sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland last week requesting a formal investigation into the police department’s actions.
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