Former police officer Brandon Tatum contradicted the offered racial narrative during an appearance on the BBC while discussing the verdict in the case of former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin.
Tatum argued that the case was not “monumental” for race in this country and that Chauvin did not receive a fair trial. When asked about supposedly systemically racist cops in America, Tatum refuted that, too, and blasted activists and politicians for “riding the wave of dead black people in order to make money and get political leverage.”
“This was not a monumental case,” Tatum told the BBC of the Chauvin verdict. “Policing in America is not inherently racist, we don’t live in a racist county.”
“We don’t have a problem with racism in our country,” he continued. “We have a problem with people not following the law. We also have a problem with politicians making up things so they can get re-elected. That’s exactly what’s been happening, and that’s why you never see anything change. They’re lying to us.”
The BBC host then told Tatum that America has a problem of “systemic racism” in policing. “How do you account” for a higher rate of black people being killed by police, he asked the former officer.
Tatum dismissed the narrative, noting “twice as many white people get killed by police every year, twice as many white people get killed unarmed by police every year.”
“Black people commit over half the violent crimes in this country and only make up 13% of the population,” Tatum continued. “They commit over half of the murders in this country, but only make up 13% of the population.” That’s why officers are policing black people more, he explained.
According to 2019 FBI crime statistics, black people committed 27.4% of all crimes and 53.3% of all murders and non-negligent manslaughter.
Tatum then outlined his case against the media’s strategic racial narrative by highlighting the death of Tony Timpa, a white man who was suffocated to death during an arrest. The case was similar to the death of George Floyd, Tatum said, “but because he was white, we don’t hear about it and nobody talks about it.”
“Do you understand there are black police officers, too, in many of these majority-black cities?” he asked the BBC host. “Are they racist? No, that’s not the case.”
Activists and politicians are “riding the wave of dead black people in order to make money and get political leverage,” Tatum said. The BBC host then quickly ended the segment and thanked Tatum for his appearance.
A jury on Tuesday found Chauvin guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter in relation to the death of George Floyd.
On May 25, Chauvin and three other officers arrested and detained Floyd after he allegedly gave counterfeit money at a convenience store. Following a struggle to get Floyd into the back of a police cruiser, viral video shows that Chauvin kneeled on Floyd’s neck and back for nearly nine minutes to detain Floyd while awaiting paramedics.
Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson argued during the trial that Floyd’s drug use and bad heart were crucial factors in his death, and that Chauvin used reasonable force through an authorized prone hold. The Hennepin County medical examiner revealed that Floyd’s autopsy showed the deceased had potentially lethal levels of drugs in his system.
Nelson argued to Judge Peter Cahill on Monday for a mistrial but was unsuccessful. A swift appeal is expected.