March 24, 2008

Taser Death: Darryl Turner (North Carolina)

UPDATE: Cops say his death might be 'Excited Delirium'. WTF?

Drumbeats from Pam's House Blend gave us the sad news about a 17-year old tasered-to-death by Charlotte police for shoplifting his lunch from local grocery store. Turner had worked as a cashier and bagged groceries at the Food Lion at 3024 Prosperity Church Road, where the incident happened.

His mother, Tammy Fontenot, indicates that Turner graduated from Crossroads Charter High School last year. He had wanted to go to Central Piedmont Community College and be a personal trainer. He didn't have any health problems and had never been in trouble, she said.

Around lunchtime on Mar 20, Turner had come home to eat and told his mom that he had stolen a couple of Hot Pockets from the store. A supervisor planned to get a district manager involved and he feared disciplinary action, she said.

She said she told him to go back to the store and face up to what happened. A few hours later she was informed that her son was dead.

Villagers, since when do our young people get the death penalty for shoplifting? What were the police thinking? It is hard for me to understand how the force continuum calls for using a taser on a young man without a weapon (...believe me, if he had a weapon, we would know about it!).

Tasers may have a place in law enforcement, however, it is becoming evident that law enforcement officers in Charlotte and elsewhere need better training on how to use the dayum things. What say u?


Bohemian Chick said...

Hi Villager, I live in Charlotte and people here are shocked at what happened.

I want to know why in the hell the police thought it necessary to kill a child for a couple of Hot Pockets?? It's just not that serious. Since he was an employee, the price of the food should've been deducted from his pay.

I don't think law enforcement anywhere should be using tasers, they obviously don't know how to use them correctly.

Paris David said...

Hi Wayne -

You don't have to post this comment - I was looking for your email address but couldn't find it.

I think you meant to write "March 20" instead of "May 20" in this post.

Thank you for letting us know about this tragic story.

Francis Holland said...

This Black kid graduated FIRST in his class from high school, and now he's dead, Tasered to death by police in a supermarket! What's the excuse this time?

I think the police have become the modern-day integrated Klu Klux Klan, with badges. Instead of having vigilantes ride into our communities on horses, with white hoods , they ride in with blue suits and badges, in police cars paid for with our tax money. But they nation's police forces are all-too-often virtually lawless anti-black militia nonetheless.

And now they've got one national way to lynch Blacks electrically who have been convicted of nothing at all: TASERS. Ironically, while the Supreme Court debates whether it is cruel and unusual punishment to execute convicted convicts in the electric chair, the police have armed themselves with little portable electric chairs and are executing people who have been convicted of nothing at all.

The TASER is just a modern-day lynching rope - smaller, lighter, quicker and used by police in broad daylight instead of by the light of a burning cross.

Unknown said...

BHC - This is truly a sad story. I see that the police are saying that the young man was approaching them. What was his weapon? Another Hot Pocket? Please keep us informed of any updates you hear about locally...

Paula - I made the date correction. I'm still interested in your advice on 'next steps' I can take to monetize my blog in your expert opinion. My email address is ''

Francis - I didn't realize he was #1 in his graduating high school class. This is truly sad situation. I had been hoping that AAPP's Tasered While Black blog would go out of business from lack of incidents. Instead the incidents of police abuse of tasers continue to mount...

BLKSeaGoat said...

Why didn't his mother go with him if this was a minor child who stole something from his part-time job?

Why did she send him back there to face up to what happened if it obviously was going to result in some type of disciplinary action?

I just read the actual news story. So this little Valedictorian had a bad temper and was throwing things at the manager. I was wondering why the police had to be called in the first place.

Did he deserve to die? No.

Should he have thought about what he was doing before getting the COPS called on him? Sure.

The officer used excessive force, but stupidity and a short fuse are also to blame for this boy's senseless death.

The only way I could rationally and completely blame police officers for this is if the boy had some sort of mental illness or personality disorder. Nothing his mother reports indicates such (I have a different opinion regarding Garland's death... that officer should be fired).

Another black male dead because of stupidity. *SIGH*

Anonymous said...

Gibbler here: i also wrote about the guy tasered in Florida. Tell me this all you black people I want to know. Why is it when a young black person is killed regardless of reason the news always makes a point to say they graduated from high school if they did? Usually they show them in cap and gown if they can find. is it such an accomplishment; graduating from high school? Is this a black thing I don't understand? I will say that for some reason cops love tasers.They really do. So watch out. You might be next.