Officers arrested Black Lives Matter activist Jasmine Richards in August days after she and others were protesting at a park.
Yesterday, a jury found Richards (aka Jasmine Abdullah) guilty of attempting to unlawfully remove a suspect from police custody during that protest. The technical term for the charge she was convicted of is “lynching.”
With the odd verdict, the activist became the first Black person to ever be convicted of the charge in the United States.
Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of Black Lives Matter, joined Roland Martin on NewsOne Now to discuss the shocking conviction and what can be done to bring awareness to this disturbing case.
Cullors explained as a result of the conviction, Richards could be sentenced to six months to four years in prison. If she is sentenced to anything over a year, she will have to serve her time in a state prison.
When asked about the appeals process, Cullors said they are working with their legal team to determine Richards’ “best options” and address her wishes going forward.
Martin asked about the “Ferguson effect” and if Black Lives Matter activists are being targeted as a result of their effectiveness.
“Definitely,” Cullors responded. “If we look back at history, we’ve seen this happen to organizers, activists, protesters — when we stand up for our rights, Black folks in particular, we’re the first one to be taken down by law enforcement.”
She added, “This moment in history, we’re seeing a resurgence of a Black liberation movement and we’re also seeing a resurgence of political prisoners and unfortunately, Jasmine Abdullah is one of those.”
Watch Roland Martin, Patrisse Cullors, and the NewsOne Now panel discuss the conviction of Jasmine Richards in the video clip above.
Subscribe to the “NewsOne Now” Audio Podcast on iTunes.