LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) – The ACLU is reiterating its call for systemic reforms for policing after prosecutors decided not to file charges against Conway police officers for killing Lionel Morris.
After the decision not to file ACLU of Arkansas is asking for independent reviews of police use of deadly force.
ACLU of Arkansas gave this statement after the decision to not file charges was made.
“Lionel Morris’s killing at the hands of Conway police officers is an unacceptable and tragic reminder of the deadly toll that police violence constantly takes on communities of color,” said Holly Dickson, ACLU of Arkansas interim executive director and legal director. “It is long past time for state officials to establish an independent review process for the use of deadly force by Arkansas law enforcement agencies and empower a statewide standards board to hold police officers accountable for misconduct. The fact that these deadly incidents continue amid a nationwide outcry against police violence demonstrates the need for systemic reform and a reimagining of the role of police in our communities. If law enforcement agencies cannot keep people safe, then they should not exist in their current form. We stand in solidarity with Morris’s family and loved ones, and will continue to demand the transformational reform that’s needed to stop the bloodshed and save Black lives.”
ACLU also states that policing remains among the rare professions without a statewide licensing board empowered to receive and act on complaints from the public.