SAVE THE KIDS OFFICIAL STATEMENT ON THE MURDER OF CHE ANDRE TAYLOR
February 25, 2016
On February 21st, 2016 at approximately 4:15pm, Seattle Police Department officers shot and killed Che Andre Taylor. Taylor, remembered by friends, family and members of the community as a loving husband, father and member of the community has since been vilified in the media and by Seattle Police Department in an effort to portray the killing as justified.
Save the Kids Seattle strongly condemns both the killing of Taylor and the subsequent media attacks on Taylor’s character and history. Under no circumstances is past misconduct, particularly when the sentence for that misconduct has been served, justification for police violence. Further, as in any situation where one party victimizes another, the burden is never on the victim to prove they did not deserve to be assaulted; the same is true here, especially given the Seattle Police Department’s own long, documented history of excessive force.
Che Taylor’s character is not what is in question here, the actions of Seattle Police Department officers and their justification for shooting and killing a man who can clearly be seen to be complying with their commands are what is in question.
The irresponsible reporting of Seattle media outlet Q13, whose version of the story was even refuted by Seattle Police Department, and their attempt to portray Taylor in a negative light serves to detract from any possibility of justice prevailing.
Save the Kids Seattle finds the actions of Seattle Police Department and the subsequent media coverage of Che Taylor’s death to be deplorable and unjustifiable. We condemn it and ask that our followers and the community support the Taylor family in this dark hour.
Moreover, we recommend that more diversity and cultural awareness and de-escalation conflict management workshops be offered to police officers. We also recommend that the police are not the only agency that is called upon to address conflicts within our society. We suggest cities, towns, and communities foster alternatives to punitive justice such as restorative justice and transformative justice.
This statement is endorsed by Save the Kids, Poetry Behind the Walls, Wisdom Behind the Walls, Education Behind the Walls, Save the Kids Radio, Institute for Hip Hop Activism, The Journal of Hip Hop Studies, and Transformative Justice Journal.