The police killing on a Black man in France set the stage for eerily familiar scenes of unrest as dozens of frustrated protesters took to the streets for a second time on Wednesday (July 4).
Fires filled the air, glass littered the road, and cries carried pain into the night in the French city of Nantes, according to reports. Riots erupted with eleven people being detained by police, with nearly 200 officers out in militarized gear, according to ABC News. The fatal shooting of an unidentified 22-year-old Black driver during a police check on Tuesday had stirred the city into sadness, shedding light on institutionalized police violence in France.
French police had previously faced scrutiny, with the significant increase in their use of service weapons by 54 percent from 2016 to 2017, according to data by the General Inspector of the French police released in June. The number of investigations into officers accused of violence also went up from 543 cases to 576, The Local, a French newspaper, reported.
Relationships between police and poor people of color in France have also been strained for years. French police, like that of U.S. police officers, have been at the center of controversy over using excessive force against Blacks, The Guardian noted. Tensions had really boiled over with the police custody death of Adama Traoré in Beaumont-sur-Oise outside Paris in 2016 that made major headlines as an example of police brutality.
Tuesday’s police shooting further highlighted tensions with a lack of transparency about the 22-year-old man’s death. The man, whose full name wasn’t released, was stopped by police at 8:30 p.m., local Police Chief Jean-Christophe Bertrand said. What happened next remains unclear, but officers said they were told by their superiors to take the man into custody after questions arose over his identity. The man allegedly then hit a police car, authorities said, before an officer fired his weapon into the driver’s carotid artery. The driver was later declared dead at a local hospital.
The man was only identified as Aboubakar F. and was stopped by Breil police in Western France, Le Monde, a French newspaper, reported.
Prime Minister Edouard Philippe promised a transparent investigation into the man’s death, according to ABC. A silent march has also been planned for Thursday evening in Nantes.
Everything We Know About Black Man Fatally Shot By Police in France was originally published on newsone.com
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