By Detroit Fighting Words Staff
The Coalition for Police Transparency and Accountability, composed of 17 Detroit-based organizations formed after the killing of Hakim Littleton by Detroit Police, held a press briefing on the necessity of an independent investigation of the police killing of 20-year-old Hakim Littleton on July 10. The Coalition also demanded an immediate end to the use of excessive force against demonstrators protesting police violence.
Chief of Police James Craig on the night of the Littleton shooting death declared the execution justified.
Mass demonstrations erupted immediately after the execution of Littleton resulting in the unwarranted arrests of at least 8 activists and the injuring of many more by the cops.
The press conference was held on the 53rd anniversary of the beginning of the 1967 Black Rebellion.
A statement released by the Coalition stated:
“Hakim did not need to die. This young Black man’s life was needlessly ended by state violence. In a just society, this situation would have been met with an appropriate response that sees Hakim still alive today. For far too long, police in this country have brutalized Black communities and utilized deadly and excessive force in our communities in ways that we don’t see in white communities. We demand an independent investigation into the shooting death of Hakim Littleton because Hakim’s Black life matters too. As police departments across the country reckon with the racist roots of policing, the repeated use of force against Black communities, and the disproportionate harm that Black people suffer at the hands of police, we demand the same reckoning from DPD in every instance of police violence.”
A copy of the video issued by the Detroit police on the evening of July 10 has been re-released with a narrative by Dr. Aneb House. An analysis of the video indicates clearly that the killing was unjustified and the victim when shot to death posed no threat to the police or the public.
Since the holding of the press conference on July 23, yet another African American was killed by police that evening on the city’s east side.
Several organizations were present at the press briefing including the National Conference of Black Lawyers (NCBL), National Lawyers Guild (NLG), Detroit Will Breathe, the Moratorium NOW! Coalition, the family of Hakim Littleton, among others.
This video, produced by the Coalition for Police Transparency and Accountability, shows a shot to Hakim Littleton’s head after he was subdued and on the ground with an officer on top of him. The video was released on July 23, 2020, on the 53rd anniversary of the start of the historic 1967 .