Jun 6, 2016
Jasmine Richards has been convicted of “felony attempted lynching” and faces prison time between six months and four years.
Richards was part of a group of Black Lives Matter activists who intervened to stop Pasadena police from roughing up a young woman accused of not paying for her meal at a restaurant in August 2015.
The bitter irony of this “criminal” case against Richards is that she is being sent to prison under a law that was originally written against racist mobs grabbing a black person away from the police in order to lynch him or her. What Richards and the other protesters did that day matches none of the requirements of this law: there was no riot by a mob; and the purpose of the protesters was obviously not to lynch the detainee.
Clearly, the felony charge was brought against Richards not because of anything she did on that day – and the police themselves did not arrest her at the time. Richards was targeted by authorities because she had been speaking out against police brutality – in particular, against the killing of Kendrec McDade, an unarmed 19-year-old black man who was shot by two Pasadena cops while running away from them in 2012.
There is a lynching – a legal lynching: exactly what this racist, unjust “justice system” is trying to do to Jasmine Richards.