Black soldier mistreatment common even before Virginia case

The Associated Press - April 17, 2021 11:35 am

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Videos of a Black and Latino Army lieutenant who was pepper-sprayed and handcuffed during a traffic stop in rural Virginia have been viewed millions of times. The episode was a grim reminder to many Black Americans that even being in military uniform doesn’t necessarily protect them from mistreatment by police. There’s also a long history of violence against veterans and service members of color because their military status was seen by some as a provocation.

Bryan Stevenson is executive director of the Alabama-based Equal Justice Initiative. He says the uniform doesn’t provoke in the same way it once did. However, he adds, it “absolutely doesn’t shield” from mistreatment.

 

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