My name is Thandisizwe Chimurenga and I am a freelance journalist in Los Angeles. I am seeking support to cover the trial of Mary O'Callaghan for the death of 35-year old Alesia Thomas.
O'Callaghan, an 18-year veteran of the Los Angeles Police Department, is scheduled to go on trial for the death of Thomas within the next month or so. Thomas died on July 22, 2012, after being stomped in the genitals seven (7) times by O'Callaghan who said she was trying to shove Thomas in the back of a police car (http://articles.latimes.com/2012/aug/31/local/la-me-lapd-video-20120831).
Thomas, who had a diagnosed mental illness, left her two small chidren in front of the 77th Street Police Station. Once the police ascertained Thomas' name and her address, they went to her apartment to question her. Thomas stated that she left the children at the police station because she could no longer care for them. The police, having decided to place Thomas under arrest for child abandonment / endangerment, struggled with her in the apartment and getting her into the car, where O'Callaghan was overheard by fellow officers to state that she would, paraphrasing, "kick Thomas in the groin." O'Callaghan has NOT been charged with murder; she has been charged wih Assault Under Color of Authority in the death of Thomas.
Police officers who kill are rarely charged with murder, and even fewer are convicted of murder.
Independent analysis and reporting on these types of trials is necessary to 1) document the proceedings from a grassroots, non-corporate media point of view; 2) tease out the nuance(s) of white supremacy and falsehood that exist during the few times that whites (law enforcement or not) actually stand trial for the murders of Black victims; 3) provide reportage that will neither blame the victim for her death nor murder her a second time, and 4) provide reportage that is not beholden to giving law enforcement the benefit of the doubt.
As a freelance journalist I have covered the trial of Johannes Mehserle for the murder of Oscar Grant (Los Angeles, 2010) and Theodore Wafer for the murder of Renisha McBride (Detroit, 2014).
Thank you for your support.