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The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

Justice Delayed is Justice Denied

Photo Courtesy to WNCT News

A fight for justice was underway Thursday evening just up the road from N.C. A&T. Livingstone College, an HBCU located in Salisbury, North Carolina, hosted a panel regarding national bail reform and over policing.

The event was sponsored by Equal Justice Now, a nonprofit social welfare organization that advocates against false arrest, unreasonable diction, wrongful convictions, and incarcerations of our citizens.

Students, lawyers, advocates, victims, and families all gathered at Varick Auditorium with concern and passion for the conversation at hand.

As the room was already filled with plenty of energy, the crowd roared when the host, civil rights activist and attorney Benjamin Crump arrived to address the injustices regarding bail reform and over policing on the local level, along with the plan of how to move forward as a community.

Attorney Crump is an attorney who specializes in civil rights and catastrophic personal injury. In his 25 years of practicing law, he has advocated for the world-renown, wrongful deaths of George Floyd, Breanna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Trayvon Martin and many more.

Thursday, Crump was fighting for change on the local level. He was advocating for the wrongful death of Charlotte, North Carolina native, Shanquilla Robinson. Robinson’s mother and sister were in attendance for the event as well.

“There’s no way that it should be five months with a video in place and other information about the individuals that did this to my sister,” Tequilla Long, Robinson’s sister, says at the press conference.

Sallamondra Robinson, Shaquille Robinson’s mother, also speaks by saying, “Shanquilla will give you the clothes off her back. They had a video of the incident that went viral and there’s been no arrests since October 29th, what kind of system is this?”

“What is it to have to influence if you do not use it when it matters most. We must use our influence when no one is talking about these names,” Crump said. “You must use your influence for a tragedy like Shanquilla Robinson, Fred Cox Jr. and Darryl Williams.”

The panel was versatile for the sake of different approaches and opinions. The panel had two moderators, Bakari Sellers and Erik Kowalczyk.

The lineup included Mecklenburg County’s district attorney Spencer Merriweather, Lincoln Memorial Professor Melanie Reid, Livingstone College’s criminal justice chair Dr. Latricia Barnes, and Attorney Dominique Calhoun.

Other panelists included Black Lives Matter 757 activist Japharii Jones, NAACP President Gemale Balck, Mecklenburg County Sheriff Gary McFadden, and Former Chief of Police James Buie.

As the panel was about the troubles of bail reform and over policing, the panelists made sure to correlate these matters with the wrongful deaths that occur within our community.

“If we develop a system that was not about a price tag and about safety, we would be in a better situation,” Merriweather said.. “Because we do not have that type of system, we are forced to wrap up with some arbitrary scandals on how we enforced pretrial justice in our communities.”

Crump left the participants encouraging students to be the change they hope to see in the world.

“It is always the young people who lead the movement,” Crump said. “Young people will be the next Martin Luther King Jr, Ella Baker and Kamala Harris.”

The panel then concluded, with news stations such as WBTV3, CW and Spectrum news eager to question Crump at the press conference that was held after the program. The questions mainly catered to the progress of Shanquilla Robinson’s ongoing case.

Crump said to the press, “This is an easy one, President Biden and Vice President Harris. Authorities have already concluded the investigation and have said the death is homicide. The work is done.”

Crump has a documentary out on Netflix called “Civil”, which further shows how he and his counterparts will not rest and consistently participate in events such as these until all justice is served.

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