December 10, 2007

'Resign' says West Memphis City Council to Police Chief for Killing 12-Year Old DeAunta Farrow

12/10/07 UPDATE: Mediaverse gives detailed run-down on the facts of the DeAunta Farrow killing ... along with raising some unanswered questions about the police actions after the young boy was shot.

12/8/07 UPDATE: West Memphis preachers claim cover-up. [video source]

Officer Erik Sammis, who shot and killed 12-year-old DeAunta Farrow, and his partner, Jimmy Evans, returned back to work on the West Memphis police force. They were cleared by three separate agencies of any wrongdoing in the killing of the youngster. You'll recall that DeAunta was not doing anything wrong at the time ... just walking over to his cousin's house. Sammis shot him dead. Now Sammis is back at work. Ain't police justice grand?!

West Memphis City Council member Lorraine Robinson was not happy about the return of the officers. "I think it's a slap in the community's face, 'cause the whole nation is looking at West Memphis, Arkansas," she said. "These men have committed this act, and it has gotten to much notoriety, and these men can just go back."

The West Memphis City Council took an unusual step. They voted 6-4 to remove the two officer and Bob Paudert, the police chief. The Mayor has five days to make a decision, but he doesn't plan to announce anything until Monday. William Johnson is the mayor of West Memphis, "I support Bob Paudert totally 100 percent. I always have." He says, he can't think of any reason why he would not keep the Chief.

You must see the racially-charged remarks of the West Memphis police chief. It was these heated comments made to News Channel 3 that set-off the firestorm.

Click here to see the video of the Chief's remarks.

Council Member Robinson says, "It was very clear from the comments that he made that he is extremely biased and extremely racist. I have worked with him now going on nine years but the person I saw last night is someone that I don't even know."

Paudert responded after the vote to have him removed by saying, "You know what? I changed my view of her when she called me a 'whitey'. It's just gotten out of hand... She changed. I made one public remark after 5 months of intense scrutiny. I make one public remark and I'm criticized for it. They've been calling Erik Sammis a murderer for months, Lorrain Robinson. So, I don't care if she's upset or not."

The Mayor finally spoke out about the case, chosing not to make a rush decision while fully supporting his chief. Mayor William Johnson says, "Certainly Bob Paudert hasn't done anything to terminate his employment. He's been a great contributor to this city, we are safer than we've ever been, and personally I wouldn't even think about removing Bob Paudert."

Council member Marco McClendon said Sammis and Evans should resign for their own safety. "I think its for the peace of the city," McClendon said. "I'm looking at the safety of the officer himself, as well as the community." McClendon said he feared someone might be gunning for Sammis and Evans, and it could put the officers in a position where they might have to shoot.

Villagers, what do you think? Should these two cops resign for the good of the community? What do you think of the Police Chief's comments? or the City Council's vote?


Lee Ann aka Dixie said...

I live about 2 hours East of West Memphis and let me tell you I hear about this every morning on WMC TV 5.

It's truly a shame that in this day and time there are still racist pigs out there who see color. Racism is just plain ignorance.

Yes, I believe those two police officers should resign. The shot a kid... a 12 yr old kid in cold blood. He was just a kid!!!!

AJ said...

Until police officers are held accountable for their actions we will continue to have rogue officers in our communities that abuse their positions. Not only should they resign, they should be charged with manslaughter at the very least!

Also, based upon the video, the Police Chief is part of the problem.

Unknown said...

Dixie - Thank you for sharing your local perspective with us. The true tragedy is that an innocent 12-year old boy is dead ... and to date, there is nobody taking responsibility for his death. The police chief kept saying 'no policy was broken'. Does he realize that the policy should be changed if it can result in the killing of an innocent 12-year old citizen?

AJ - I agree. I'm surprised that the police chief doesn't see the problem.

HeyShae! said...

I think all three of them should resign. It was bad enough that the incident happened but for the police chief to be out there ranting on television is unacceptable. They should have had a PR person there to make an official statement and kept the chief from doing more damage than good.

Unknown said...

Shae-Shae - I've never been to West Memphis, however, I imagine that some of those towns down in Arkansas enjoy and think it is good for the chief to be saying what he said. Any town that allows a 12-year old innocent boy to be shot dead without anyone being punished ... is a sick town ... and probably deserves a racially-sick police chief.

Anonymous said...

No, these officers should not resign for the good of the community. They should be fired for the good of humanity and prosecuted for the good of the community.

Unknown said...

Old White Man - Amen!

Unknown said...

I live in Memphis. The officers were cleared in every attempt to get them fired or charged with a crime. It is sad that the young boy was killed but the officers were just doing their job to protect the comunity. The boy had an altered toy gun that looked real. He did not respond to commands from the cops. Race of the boy had nothing to do with it. It is called the race card, just somthing else to fuss about and devide the comunity. It is sad no mater his color. Let the officers go back to work and leave them alone. Even it was just their job and they did nothing wrong they have to live with the fact that they killed a boy.

Unknown said...

truck2cmfd - I appreciate you for taking time to share your comments. It has been a number of years since the incident. Has the issue resolved itself ... or do you still have controversy in the community today (2011) about it?