BY JAKE DINGLER (MASS ACTION FOR BLACK LIBERATION)
On June 19, 2018 a Pittsburgh cop pulled over a silver Chevy Cruze, claiming it fit the description of a vehicle involved in a drive by shooting twenty minutes earlier. When the driver was asked to get out of the vehicle, the passenger, Antwon Rose, 17, as well as a third passenger, got out and began to run. The cop, Michael Rosefeld, who had been sworn on to the force only hours before, opened fire on the two fleeing minors, hitting Rose three times in the back. Rose later died at the hospital of his injuries.
This recounting of events is sickeningly familiar within the scope of the U.S. news cycle. The fact that this act of a cop stealing life from an unarmed black person could seem repetitious should shake one’s soul. The news coverage for this most recent tragedy could easily be cut and pasted from the accounts of the killing of Eric Garner or Alton Sterling, replacing the names and places and a few specific facts, with one exception: The killer cop has been indicted.
Rosefeld was arrested on June 26, 2018, charged with criminal homicide, also known as “deliberate” or “premeditated” murder. The swift filing of these charges is due, in no small part, to the people of Pittsburgh, and those in solidarity with the city, who took to the streets demanding justice. Far too often do cases like this go unprosecuted, but those who believe in justice spoke to the powers that be, by the thousands, with the resounding proclamation that they won’t back down.
It is important to remember this is the first of many victories to be won in pursuit of justice for Antwon Rose. A court battle against a killer cop is a tumultuous thing, and it is imperative to remain vigilant. The city of Pittsburgh, the prosecutor, the judge, and the jury need a daily reminder that a miscarriage of justice is not an option. When a state- funded killer goes free, we must ensure severe repercussions for said state. Solidarity is key; it is the duty of all of us to stand in the face of authority and scream for justice, regardless of our distance from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Make your voice heard, and uplift the voice of those beside you. “If Antwon don’t get it… SHUT. IT. DOWN!”