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Richmond Activists Holding Discussion On Policing Reform Friday Night

flyer for the event happening at 6 pm on Friday
Photo Courtesy of Southerners On New Ground

Activist groups will hold a virtual panel tonight at 6 p.m., discussing policing in the City of Richmond.

The “Beyond Policing” event is being held by numerous activist organizations, including the Richmond Transparency and Accountability Project and Southerners On New Ground. 

Local organizer Chelsea Higgs Wise said attendees and activists will layout ways to reform the criminal justice system to be more focused on community safety and accountability. 

“We are looking at multiple ways to now shift the system and multiple entries for public input, to really oversee how we are policed here in Richmond,” she said.

The event will honor Marcus-David Peters, a high school biology teacher who was shot and killed by Richmond Police in 2018. Family members said, at the time, Peters was having a mental health crisis. He was naked and unarmed when he was shot by a police officer who attempted to intervene before backup arrived. An investigation into the shooting concluded when the Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney declared it was a “justifiable homicide.” 

The “Beyond Policing” event will highlight the changes that activists have called for both before and after Peters’ death. They include reforming how Richmond Police treat people who are having a mental health crisis and a citizen review board. 

The event will be live streamed online here.