B.Lack of life Matter protests against LA County's first black district attorney for Jackie Lacey for refusing to persecute law enforcement officers who have killed more than 600 Angelenos since taking office in 2012.
Signs saying "Bye Jackie!" and "Prosecute Killer Cops" can be seen in the weekly protests outside Lacey's office, house and town hall.
Black Lives Matter LA has been mobilizing against Lacey for about two and a half years, but since George Floyd's death in Minneapolis and subsequent global protests, the number of demonstrators has grown to thousands. A recent study by Pew Research found that two-thirds of adults in the US said they supported the Black Lives Matter movement.
Melina Abdullah, co-founder of Black Lives Matter LA, criticized Lacey's refusal to persecute violent officials in an interview with LA Downtown News.
Quoting 20th-century African-American writer Zora Neale Hurston, she said, "All skin people are not relatives" when she spoke about Lacey.
"We see Jackie Lacey as an absolutely black face with white dominance," said Abdullah.
The leaders of the Black Lives Matter have spoken to Lacey, Abdullah said, but the talks have not produced the justice they are looking for. In early March, Lacey's husband pointed a gun at Abdullah's chest after she went to her door to hold a community gathering because Lacey had not planned to meet the leaders promised.
At a press conference, Lacey apologized, saying that her husband, a former investigator in the prosecutor's office, was afraid of receiving death threats.
Lacey said she was wrongly targeted by the protests against her. In an interview with the Associated Press, she said, "I don't want people to think I'm biased or racist or fearful, or one of those very flattering things that are said."
"We shouldn't assume that anyone who says" Black Lives Matter "is not concerned with public security," said Lacey. "It is a wrong decision that they are mutually exclusive."
Abdullah said most blacks voted for Lacey, with the high hope that a black woman in power would represent the community more authentically than previous prosecutors. That didn't work, said Abdullah.
When Lacey decides not to pursue police officers who kill blacks, "the message is that the police can do what they want without being held accountable," said Abdullah. "You can kill people with impunity, and the police know it."
Albert Ramon Dorsey, Grechario Mack, Wakiesha Wilson and Brendon Glenn are just a few of the names of black lives killed by law enforcement agencies whose families have never received justice, as described on Black Lives Matter LA's Jackie Must Go page.
"The message is being sent to the police that they can do what they want, and I think it actually plays a role in promoting police killings," she said. "You don't have to hold back."
In LA County, the number of people killed by the police on Lacey's guard is up to 609, Abdullah said, noting that the number of lives lost in June is not included.
The "veil of liberalism" that LA is proud of makes many think that the city and the entire state of California are immune to racism, Abdullah said. While Californians like to believe that their state is the model for progressive values, many of those in power continue the systemic racism on which the country was built, and Lacey is no exception, she added.
"Institutional racism can use people of all races to adopt racist guidelines and participate in racist practices," said Abdullah.
Lacey refuses to bring justice to these families because it is funded by law enforcement unions like the Los Angeles Police Protective League, Abdullah said.
The Los Angeles Police Protective League is a law enforcement union and lobby arm that represents LAPD officials and has a reputation for supporting what is considered by some to be an extreme right-wing "law and order" policy.
"They don't want their members to be prosecuted, of course," said Abdullah. "If it is financed by them, it will be very difficult for them to part with them."
Black Lives Matter LA's Facebook page described the Los Angeles Police Protective League as a "gang," saying, "They buy politicians, intimidate critics, and cover up their members' crimes."
In June, a group of senior prosecutors publicly urged the California Attorney General to ban district attorneys from receiving campaign donations from law enforcement unions. This creates bias and is a conflict of interest in the prosecution and investigation of officials by district attorneys.
Since the protests began, several heads of government have withdrawn their advocacy for Lacey or indicated that they will no longer be supported.
Mayor Eric Garcetti said it may be time for a change in prosecution on June 12 in an interview with the appeal, a criminal justice release.
Congressman Adam Schiff and Laura Friedman withdrew their comments for Lacey.
A tweet from Schiff on June 20 said, "This is a rare time in our nation's history. We have a responsibility to make profound changes to end systemic racism and reform criminal justice."
In response, Lacey made a statement defending her actions as a district attorney.
“As the first African American woman to hold the LA County Attorney's Office, I am proud of my experience with systemic racism and criminal justice reform – from bail reform to nearly 50% reduction in juvenile cases to strengthening the Our office's focus is on mental health care rather than detention, ”she said.
George Gascón, a former San Francisco district attorney, is running Lacey for the third time and is supported by U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren. His campaign focuses on a more advanced approach to law enforcement and public security.
Some have asked Abdullah if it is too late for Lacey to reconcile with the leaders of the Black Lives Matter and the community they represent. It is never too late to change, said Abdullah, but her actions must speak louder than words.
"Jackie Lacey abused the black community, and before we try to get her back into the community, it needs to be remedied, and that means prosecuting the police," Abdullah said.