DETROIT (WWJ) — Local activists plan to march next Monday at the Michigan State Police headquarters in Lansing to call for the department’s director to resign.
The group of activists led by David Alexander Bullock and Reverend W.J. Rideout III want the culture of the Michigan State Police to change after a number of recent incidents. Those include a Facebook post by its director which called kneeling NFL players “degenerates” and the recent death of a Detroit teenager who was tasered by a trooper.
“We are marching because we are tired of the racial bias and the culture of racial insensitivity in the Michigan State Police,” Bullock told WWJ Newsradio 950. “Called NFL players and other African Americans degenerates. That kind of language from the head of the Michigan State Police really colors the culture of that law enforcement agency.”
The march will begin on Oct. 16 at 2 p.m. outside the Michigan State Police headquarters — located in Dimondale, Mich. The group of activists will take buses from Detroit up to the Lansing-area location.
Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue was in the middle of the controversy when her inflammatory social media post that called some NFL players “anti-American degenerates” went viral. She has since apologized about her posting, but also has said she has no intentions of resigning.
Bullock believes Etue’s social media post shows her lack of leadership and pointed out that there’s a trickle down effect among the department. He said that trickle down effect led to the death of Damon Grimes during a tasing incident when Grimes was running away from the cops on an ATV. The trooper who tasered Grimes — Mark Bessner — resigned from his post last week.
Bullock said this march will hopefully open some eyes and raise awareness of the “racial bias” and “police misconduct” in the department.
“We are tired of the racial insensitivity,” Bullock said. “We want justice for Grimes, we want a resignation from Col. Etue.
“Our greatest fear is that the blue shield will provide cover, not only for racial bias but for police misconduct. So we want to continue to press this issue and move forward.”