Here’s hoping this investigation will result in some form of justice, rather than the usual lack of it. Unsurprisingly, the cop who killed Ms. Tsingine had a highly questionable character, but the Winslow cop shop took him on anyway.
The Justice Department will investigate the police shooting of a Native American woman in Arizona, a spokesman said on Friday, a day after footage released by the Winslow police department raised concerns about racial bias in the fatal shooting.
The department’s civil rights division will review the local investigation into the March 27 shooting death of Loreal Tsingine, spokesman Wyn Hornbuckle said.
Tsingine, 27, was shot and killed by the Winslow police officer Austin Shipley in late March after officers suspected her of shoplifting in a local store and confronted her. Silent body-camera footage, first obtained by the Arizona Daily Sun, shows a police officer trying to restrain Tsingine then shoving her to the ground and finally drawing a gun on her as she approaches him.
In the video, Tsingine gets up and walks toward Shipley with a small pair of medical scissors in her left hand, and another officer quickly approaches her from behind. Shipley draws his gun and directs it at Tsingine, and the footage is cut off before he fires the fatal shot.
Tsingine’s aunt, Floranda Dempsey, said her niece was 5ft tall and weighed 95lbs. “They should have been able to subdue her with their huge size and weight,” she said. “It wasn’t like she came at them first. I’m sure anyone would be mad if they were thrown around.” She added a question: “Where were the tasers, pepper sprays, batons?”
The family filed a $10.5m wrongful death lawsuit against the city at the beginning of the month, claiming that “the city of Winslow was negligent in hiring, training, retaining, controlling and supervising” the officer who killed Tsingine.
Shipley’s training records show two of his fellow officers had serious concerns that he was too quick to go for his service weapon, that he ignored directives from superiors, and that he was liable to falsify reports and not control his emotions.
A day before Shipley’s training ended, nearly three years ago, a police corporal recommended that the Winslow police department not retain him.
I cannot be the only one who wants an answer as to why in the hell this person was hired in the first place, then why in the hell he was kept on, and why he was not red-flagged all over the damn place. What is the point of cops trying to do the right thing, when they are simply ignored? This is how cop shops get a well deserved reputation of being rotten to the core.
This is a photo of Shipley, wearing a three percenters shirt, which might go a long way to answering why Ms. Tsinginge is dead, and why Shipley is so damn trigger happy:
Nationwide, Native Americans are disproportionately killed by police. Based on data from the Counted, the Guardian’s database of police killings in the US, fatal police shootings of black, white, Hispanic and Asian Americans have all gone down slightly or remained roughly the same from 2015 into 2016, but twice as many Native Americans have been killed over the same period.
Because the number of Native Americans, relative to other racial and ethnic categories, is quite small, just a handful of incidents can dramatically change the per capita rate. Still, 13 Native American people have been killed just over halfway through 2016, more than the 10 that were killed in all of 2015.
Tsingine is one of four Native Americans killed in 2016, representing about 30% of the incidents in contrast to the rate among all racial groups, in which women represent victims in about 3% of fatal shootings. For comparison, only one Hispanic or Asian American woman has been shot and killed by police in all of 2016, even though they represent a much larger portion of the population than Native American women.
Simon Moya-Smith, an activist and Oglala-Lakota tribal member, said it was “unfortunate that Native Americans are routinely excluded from this conversation” about racialized police violence. Moya-Smith noted as an example that in her Democratic nomination acceptance speech Thursday night, Hillary Clinton did not mention systemic racialized violence or discrimination against Native Americans.
“We know that many people don’t see us as human. We’re relics of centuries of lore,” Moya-Smith said. “We first need to get the cops to recognize us as human, and hopefully then they won’t think of themselves as the judge, the jury and the executioner.”
5 feet tall. 95 pounds. A pair of tiny medical bandage scissors. Two big ass cops, batons, pepper spray, tasers. And Ms. Tsingine ends up with 5 fucking bullets in her tiny body. How the fuck anyone could rule that justified, I do not know. Also, I’m thankful for The Guardian picking this story up, and getting word out. So, U.S. media, where the fuck are you?