The following statement was released today by the NAACP in the case of Mark Anthony Barmore, an unarmed African American man fatally shot by two white Rockford, IL police officers in a church day care center.
“The NAACP is shocked and outraged by the Illinois State Police finding that the Rockford Police acted properly in shooting and killing Mark Barmore, who was unarmed” said Norma Joseph, President of the Rockford Branch NAACP.
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The Rockford, Illinois branch of NAACP, along with community leaders, faith leaders and concerned citizens in the State of Illinois, have formed a coalition which is calling for an independent investigation by the US Department of Justice through the US Attorney General for the Northern District of Illinois into the incident. The community-based coalition has also called for the establishment of a citizen’s police review board with subpoena and disciplinary power.
“We are seeking accountability for the law enforcement officer’s actions,” explained Attorney Don Jackson, President of the Illinois State NAACP. “In only five years of service, one of the officers has been involved in four shootings, two of which resulted in fatalities.”
“It is a sad day in this country when two police officers with guns drawn can charge into a church day care center, terrorize children and staff and fatally shoot an unarmed man in the back with impunity,” stated Benjamin Todd Jealous, NAACP President and CEO.”