Legal Momentum is relieved and encouraged by yesterday’s guilty verdict in the trial of Daniel Holtzclaw, the former Oklahoma City police officer who abused his authority to sexually coerce and assault 13 Black women, one of them only a teen.
The fact that this serial abuse by a uniformed officer occurred demonstrates the urgent need to continue working with law enforcement on needed reforms. As one of the victims testified, “What kind of police do you call on the police?”
As the national conversation about law enforcement reform continues, it’s crucial that the voices of victims and of women of color be heard. As we stated in our letter to President Obama’s Task Force on Policing in the 21st Century earlier this year: “Legal Momentum believes that it is crucial to study and address the many ways in which women and girls, particularly in communities of color, are adversely impacted by actions taken by law enforcement. We also ask the Task Force to keep in mind that the over-policing of communities of color may make women of color reluctant to seek law enforcement intervention, even when it is desperately needed… It is critical for law enforcement to take seriously, investigate, and prosecute the crimes being committed against women and girls everywhere, especially in communities of color.”