LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Silent Witnesses, Roy Cooper

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Silent Witnesses, Roy Cooper
September 10
00:00 2015

Thanks for being a sponsor of Silent Witnesses

To the Editor:

The Winston-Salem Police Department has enjoyed a great partnership with our business community for many years and we are thankful that you [The Chronicle] have chosen to be an active participant in strengthening our relationship. Your sponsorship of our Silent Witnesses is a testament to your commitment to the Winston-Salem community.

The Silent Witness you have sponsored is property of the Winston-Salem Police Department; however, your name, as the sponsor, will be permanently affixed and on display throughout numerous events in the future.

One hundred percent of the money you gave in sponsorship of a Silent Witness will be donated to Family Services of Forsyth County to help provide resources to victims of domestic violence. I hope that someone finds the help they need, someone no longer has to deal with domestic violence and someone’s life is made better because of people like you who are willing to help.

Barry D. Rountree, MPA

Chief of Police



Ministers meet with Roy Cooper over officer retrial, but he still says no

To the Editor:


Today a group of clergy from Charlotte and the Greater North Carolina community, in partnership with the N.C. NAACP, delivered the attached letter to Attorney General Roy Cooper [in Raleigh] to express their concerns regarding his decision to not retry Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Officer Randall Kerrick in the wrongful death of Johnathan Ferrell.

However, after a very impassioned conversation, the final decision from the Attorney General remains to not retry this case.

“In light of this decision, we are still committed to pressing for a retrial so that justice is done for the Ferrell family and all citizens of North Carolina” says Dr. Rodney Sadler, associate professor of Bible Union Presbyterian Seminary. This coalition of clergy will reconvene after this meeting to discuss next steps and release further details in the near future.

This is what was presented to Attorney General Roy Cooper:

Friday, September 4, 2015

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper

North Carolina Department of Justice

RE: The decision not to retry Officer Randall Kerrick

Dear Attorney General Cooper:

Thank you for taking the time to meet with us. We asked the N.C. NAACP to join us. As members of the Charlotte community, we wanted to meet with you to discuss our concerns in relation to your decision to not retry Officer Randall Kerrick for the wrongful death of Jonathan Ferrell.

We understand that the city of Charlotte settled with the family in this case, but there is no amount of money that can justify the fact that Officer Kerrick used unreasonable force to shoot and kill an unarmed man. Testimony from this case has shown that Kerrick violated police department policies and because of his actions, he was charged with involuntary manslaughter.

We also understand that the jury was hung, by an 8 to 4 vote, that they were unable to pronounce a verdict and as a result, the court was forced to declare a mistrial. However, what we do not understand is why you feel that to retry this case would not yield a different result when our community believes and the law dictates that a retrial is in order. Yes, the jury in the first trial was unable to speak in one voice, but such a hung jury has not spoken for the Charlotte Community or the people of North Carolina. The loss of human life and the heartbreak of a family require a more just and wise response.

In the state of North Carolina where African-Americans have a long history of being wrongfully convicted of murder and other crimes, we now see a case of the same legal system refusing to properly try an officer of the law for killing an unarmed black college student. We contend that your decision not to retry this case was made much too quickly.

We are concerned that the dash cam video was not put into proper perspective given our long experience with the racial stereotypes that young black men are a lethal danger to a society that is too often justified in taking his life for its own alleged protection. This standard is far too subjective and it results in a call for retrial that has become habitual.

We are also concerned that little to no weight was placed on the fact that the city settled the case with the family based on research that these type actions by the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department, although reported, were never investigated by external forces.

Finally, we are concerned that your quick decision not to submit the evidence of this case to a new jury sets a dangerous precedent that lends itself to continued issues of inequality in the criminal justice system.

In light of this history and our concerns, we call for you to reconsider and retry this case for the sake of this family and this community, and in the name of justice. We believe the decision not to do so is unconscionable. Too many times, too many mothers and wives have buried their sons and husbands.

Concerned Clergy of Charlotte and the greater North Carolina Community:

Mininster Corine Mack [Charlotte, NC)

Rev. Rodney Sadler   (Charlotte, NC)

Bishop Dwayne Walker (Charlotte, NC)

Bishop Tonya Rawls   (Charlotte, NC)

Rev. Donnie R. Garris  (Charlotte, NC)

Rev. John Mendez    (Winston Salem, NC)

Rev. Kojo Nantambu (Charlotte, NC)

Rev. Mike Broadway (Durham, NC)

Rev. Gregory K. Moss (Charlotte, NC)

Paul Msiza (South Africa)

Rev. Jimmy Hawkins (Durham, NC)

Rev. Glencie Rhedrick (Charlotte, NC)

Rev. Earl Johnson (Durham, NC)

Rev. Dr. William J. Barber (NC NAACP)

Rev. Michelle Laws   (NC NAACP)



About Author

WS Chronicle

WS Chronicle

Related Articles


Featured Sponsor

Receive Chronicle Updates

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.



More Sponsors