Concerned USF Law Students Statement on SFPD's Killing of Mario Woods
This is a statement in regards to the unlawful killing of Mario Woods by San Francisco police officers on December 2nd of 2015.
We, as concerned law students at the University of San Francisco, are outraged at the officers of the San Francisco Police Department who shot and killed Mario Woods without justification. This use of unnecessary lethal force, and subsequent denial of fault by the San Francisco Police Department, epitomizes the failure of American policing that has become the spotlight of protest in communities around the country. Once again, the San Francisco Police Department has contributed to the systemic and historic epidemic of unnecessary police violence in communities of color.
Initially, we would like to make it clear that we stand in support of the Bayview Community as they are once again undergoing the repercussions of an injustice at the hands of the San Francisco Police Department. We understand that the Bayview community, like no other in San Francisco, has dealt with decades of oppressive and violent policing. Accordingly, we recognize that this shooting is not a random act by the San Francisco Police Department, but only the most recent in a long line of similar occurrences. We would also like to make it clear that we support the individuals and various organizations, such as Black Lives Matter, Anti Police-Terror Project, BYP 100, and others, in this pursuit of justice for both Mario Woods and the countless other victims of unjustified and unpunished police misconduct.
We are urging the District Attorney’s Office to act by bringing charges against the officers who used unnecessary force when they shot and killed Mario Woods—who posed no imminent risk of serious injury. We have observed a consistent trend in court systems turning a blind eye to acts of violence by police officers. Nationwide, court systems have failed to indict and convict officers when circumstantial evidence has given them reason to do so. Even more shockingly, they have failed to indict and convict officers when video evidence has shown them engaging in seemingly blatant violations of the law; choosing to instead protect officers, and subject communities of color to this massive conflict of interest. In order for San Francisco’s court system to begin to diverge from this disturbing trend, the District Attorney must bring charges against all officers who were involved in the killing of Mario Woods. We at the University of San Francisco stand with many others in stating that those individuals should not be able to evade the criminal court system simply because they are police officers.
This statement is endorsed by the following:
Black Law Student Association—USF Chapter
Concerned Students of the University of San Francisco School of Law