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Jun 30, 2018 106 tweets 62 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Just arrived at the community meeting to call for justice and accountability for #MarcusDavidPeters. There are chairs reserved for #RVAMayor @LevarStoney and @RichmondPolice Chief Durham. Will they come to fill them? #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
The demands and additional information. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
We are about to get started and I’m counting over 75 attendees. No #RVAMayor or Chief Durham at this point but 9th District #RVACouncil member @thedrmikejones is in attendance. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton is kicking things off at 2nd Baptist. Introducing Reverend Antonio Reid. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Excellent opening prayer. Everyone held hands to be connected as one in the stand for justice. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton outlining the mission of today’s meeting. He wants us to understand who #MarcusDavidPeters was and his value, the ongoing police accountability movement, where mental health stands, and more. #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Everything up to this point has been done with the leadership and guidance of the family. Art says he would be more like the guy in Oakland on the tables without the family in this movement. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
One of Marcus’s sister’s @PrincessBlandi1 is speaking. She was the last family member to see #MarcusDavidPeters alive. He was a teacher at her school. He taught a whole day. They didn’t find out something happened until 5 hours after & they were originally told he had an accident
Princess is recounting the day her brother was killed. She remembers her mom saying please just tell me they didn’t shoot him in the head. There was silence. Eventually RPD told them it was the abdomen. At that point they thought he had a chance. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath
When they arrived at the hospital they found out he was not going to make it. She begged them to let her see her brother. Originally they said no. Eventually they let her go back. As soon as she saw him she knew he was gone. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
She says she will never get tired of fighting for justice and reformation for her brother. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Rebecca Keel is now asking Princess a few questions about #MarcusDavidPeters life. He was 1 of 12 siblings. Says it took their family a long time to get a boy. He was a big baby 10LBs. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
In high school she remembers coming home to him with thick textbooks in the table. He originally wanted to be a surgeon. Graduated from high school with honors. Was a speaker at his graduation. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
She says they brought him in as a biology teacher in October. Says everyone was blown away at how amazing he was at a teacher. Says she rarely saw discipline referrals from him because he worked with the kids to understand why the kids were having problems. #HelpNotDeath
She says he kept coming to her office talking about a mentor ship program because he KNEW he could reach the kids. She said he was a biology teacher so she was like “wooooaaahhh we have got SOLs.” Crowd chuckles. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Princess says the last time the rest of the family saw him alive was Mother’s Day. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Marcus wasn’t a criminal. Marcus might have had a speeding ticket but who doesn’t. He wasn’t a criminal. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
“I am disappointed that Mayor Stoney is not here. I am disappointed that Chief Durham is not here. I personally sent them an invitation.” - @PrincessBlandi1

#MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️

She hasn’t heard back from Chief Durham and it wasn’t until 11:59AM today that she received an email from #RVAMayor’s office that he could not attend. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Princess says their silence, is violence. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
I sent an email through action network for the event to our elected officials. Only received a response from 6th District Ellen Robertson. 9th District Councilman Mike Jones is in attendance. #RVACouncil #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton is speaking about his experience with his son who was having mental health issues and he and his family avoid calling the police for fear of him being harmed. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says one day he had no choice but to call the police. He is thankful they were kind. They told him they were going to have to put hands on him to get him under control. He was able to get his son in the car and get him to the hospital. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath
He says the next day his wife of 9 years called him and told him she felt like she needed to divorce him because he called the police and put their son in danger by doing so. They don’t want their child killed or harmed. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says our communities are being destroyed. This is a human tragedy. A tragedy of families. Our communities are suffering. You see people suffering from mental health issues every day. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Daryl Fraser professor from VCU is now speaking about mental health. He is a social worker by profession. Has a background in mental health. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He connects to Marcus’s story both on a personal and professional level. He looks at Marcus and sees that he could have been his brother, his father, how own son. As his children get older, they will be viewed as a threat by so many people. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath
He knows this is how they will be viewed and treated because he has experienced it himself and knows many black men in the country have as well. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He is defining mental health and mental illness. We can maintain our mental health much like our physical health. People who experience mental illness are in need of help. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Based on what he has seen of the incident, Marcus was someone experiencing mental illness. More specifically a mental health crisis. An emergency. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
The process today to help someone in a mental health crisis is call the police and the police should take them to a hospital. But some people experiencing a crisis can get violent. Doesn’t mean they don’t need help. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He points out other groups of people who have been trained to respond with non violent deescalation to a mental health crisis. Those groups of people, such as social workers, do not carry guns. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He also says that in addressing training, we have to address unconscious bias and conscious bias that contribute to racism. If Marcus was a 60 year old white woman, would he have been tased? Would he have been shot. No. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says don’t just look at the police for accountability. Look at ourselves. Look at our friends. Silence is violence. When you see racism and don’t call it out, you are contributing to the problem. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says we need to stop making light of mental illness. It’s not funny. They need help. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Now speaking is Omari from @RVANewSouth. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
He reads the first two demands.
1. RPD publicly release Crisis Intervention Training and its effectiveness.
2. Creation of “Marcus Alert”

#MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton says everyone is not right but everyone deserves due process and their day in court. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Burton says he was in Mosby Court for 4 years, there were 24 murders of black men. They asked the chief for more police there. Durham said he didn’t want to lock down the community with police. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Their response was if there were police people would stop driving in and killing their children. Police weren’t put in Mosby until after a state police was killed. Since then only 2 murders. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
There is a history of community asking Police for help and they haven’t fulfilled the call. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Just did a call and response with group. Said name of someone or group of people murdered by state violence, audience said presente. This isn’t just in Richmond. This is a much bigger problem. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Edwuan Whitehead and Adeola Ogunkeyede speaking on groups ongoing efforts to demand police accountability. There is a coalition of organizations who have been working together. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
After knocking on over 800 doors, residents in Southside Richmond said what is important to them in their community is over policing in their communities and police accountability. They want a civilian review board. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Legal Aid Justice Center began FOIA-ing information from RPD in Sept 2017. Requesting numbers about use of force, training information, etc. RPD denied many requests including the figures of use of force, civilian complaints, etc. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
RPD cited an arbitrary exemption to deny many of the items requested. LAJC told them be prepared to go to court. RPD responded with “let’s have a meeting.” #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
She says RPD agreed to release total numbers of use of force and civilian complaints starting February 2018. Durham says it is their commitment to transparency and doesn’t acknowledge they were forced by the community to release it. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Problem is this information is self-reported by RPD so it is not the complete story but it is a start. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
If you want to review the data reported by RPD.... here is the link to where it is on their website. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️

Now they have requested data on stop and frisk (btw RPD calls those field interview reports) broken down with demographics. RPD originally committed to releasing data but came back and said they didn’t have resources to do it.

#HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Suggested they either need to wait or FOIA. When they FOIA-ed, RPD originally rejected over technicality of language. They have re-sent it. Now they have until July 9th to respond.

#HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Soooo lets really talk about Durham’s alleged commitment to transparency.
#HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
RPD frequently says they don’t have the funding to do what community asks. Now looking to the budget.
Crisis Intervention Training was itemized in 2015 budget for $191K.
#HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
RPD accounted for 12% of total 2017 budget. Public safety and judiciary budget was 48%. As of tomorrow, RPD will account for 13% of budget and public safety and judiciary budget will be 49%. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Patrol budget increased by $6M this year. He hopes it can be reallocated to support the initiatives from the family’s demands. #RVACouncil #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton now ties in the lack of funding for schools as policing eats up the budget and children continue die as a result. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art says people were shocked that Marcus was naked but in this city there is a history of stripping black people naked. In the space Marcus was killed is an interstate that covers the bones of his ancestors who were murdered and mutilated. #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
This city has a lot to apologize for when it comes to the lives of blacks people. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
This is a movement of human beings. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Ana Edwards is coming up to speak about historical violence against black people in Richmond. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
The evolution of violence against blacks people as a standard operating procedure goes all the way back to slavery. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Ana Edwards says as violence evolved, so did science at the same time and these policies of white supremacy got integrated into our society at a very deep level. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
“We absorb the need to go along and accommodate.” #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
She states that there is the reason given for Stoney/Durham not attending but reality is they see being here as riskier to their position in the system which perpetuates violence against their own people. They participate in continuing the system. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath
Ana says it is appalling that the have to keep justifying their existence as black people to the system. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Montay Taylor is about to speak about the importance of young people getting involved. He the state president of the youth and college division of the NAACP. He goes to ODU and is pre-law. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He had a friend who growing up people just thought was weird. He went to VCU & started showing signs of something. They pulled him out of VCU & brought him home. Ended up calling cops. Cops said he was fine. 2 weeks later he burnt his house down. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters
When he burnt his house down, police painted him like a thug. He questions what kind of thug thing burning your own house down is. He got charged and went to jail. Got diagnosed with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia when he was there. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Somehow despite being on suicide watch, he was able to hang himself. This city has a history of not helping young black men. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
“We have more to lose if we don’t fight now.” #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
If you see kids in your area who need help... help them. Get them engaged. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
We are now starting the community speaking portion of the event. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
9th District Councilman @thedrmikejones has asked for the opportunity to say a few words. He is being brought up now. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says he is here for one reason and he can’t speak for all of #RVACouncil but he can speak for himself. He feels he owes @PrincessBlandi1 an apology as her humanity and existence was not recognized when she spoke at Council. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says he apologizes for not even simply recognizing her existence on that evening at #RVACouncil. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says we have an issue with policing in this country. He is not anti-police because he is here. He is pro-police. He isn’t anti mayor. He isn’t anti Chief. He is none of those things. He wants people to get home safety every day. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He has a son who is taller than him and has to have a certain conversation with his son that none of his white friends have to have. He says he has had to shrink his space and presence and tells his son to do the same. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He says to Princess he is sorry because at the end of the day, her brother isn’t coming home and no matter the circumstances, that is the real tragedy. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
“It will take white people challenged other white peoples to change the system.” Says he doesn’t represent the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th.... everyone needs to use their voice. He appreciates the woke white people. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Concludes by telling everyone to keep fighting. Hugs Princess and her brother before he leaves. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Marcus’s cousin just spoke about how much impact Marcus made when he was here. Tells Stoney and Durham’s empty chairs that they will not stop fighting for change. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Definitely over 100 people came out today for this community meeting. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Person speaking now on her experience in 2016 that went very different than how Marcus’s day went. She thinks it was different because she is white. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
In 2016 her mother passed away and she didn’t know how to handle it. 2 weeks after she had a mental health crisis. Police were called to respond. She was scared she would be killed. Police arrived and were not just cordial but gave her a choice. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters
Police gave her a choice to either go voluntarily to the hospital or be taken to jail. She choose the hospital. Marcus did not have that choice. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Next speaker is Elizabeth. She calls for healing and has has a community engagement event coming up. Says the Chief confirmed his attendance. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Next person speaking details his experience with mental health system. His father was diagnosed with blood cancer. He went to a hospital for help and ended up in jail. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He was waiting in a room to speak to someone for 6 hours. He got a temporary detention order put against him and police came as the next person he spoke to. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
For 2 days he waited in general population with other individuals in a special ward for a public attorney to get him out. He was very depressed and was very terrified during his experience when he just wanted help. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
He was arbitrarily prescribed benzodiazepines to be taken every 6 hours along with anti depressants. He didn’t get help at all. He still isn’t comfortable talking to therapists. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Oh, also... it was a FOR PROFIT HOSPITAL. They had an incentive to keep him there. The reason he got locked up was they falsified a statement and said he had unkempt hair. Kept him 2 days and charged him for it. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Now speaking is @ChelseaWiseRVA who is on the RBHA board. She is here as an individual. RPD is supposed to be a partner and the money in the budget for crisis intervention training goes to RBHA to provide the training. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
The money in 2015 went to RBHA for the training. Says let’s make sure the Marcus Alert is effective because when officers claim they didn’t have time to bring in a crisis team, they need to also know how to de-escalate. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Chelsea says as soon as the officer recognized Marcus was in a mental health crisis, the cop should have locked his gun up in the car. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Another cousin of #MarcusDavidPeters is speaking. Says he doesn’t think police recognized that what happened to his brother would be a spark that created an inferno. He says stay lit to keep the inferno burning. #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️
Next speaker with @BMMPRVA says we need to change how we speak about black and brown children. Get to know them. Be gentle with how you speak to and about them. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Next speaker is a clergy-person and organizer. Says we don’t need ambiguous language from politicians. Says the one leader who came walked a line down the middle of the road. Wants leaders to stand up and take a stance. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
A few minutes past 3PM, the community meeting is wrapping up. Reverend Antonio Reid is closing us out in prayer. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
What are the next steps? He believes we have to engage #RVAMayor and Chief. Says Richmond didn’t seek him out to be Mayor... he sought Richmond out. He isn’t here and employs the chief. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Says follow the Mayor’s schedule and meet him where he will be. Mayor’s schedule is public information. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Princess is up and says they will NOT back down. They will be where the Mayor is. There is strength behind her tears. You will continue to see her face. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Art Burton says we need leaders to take a position and a stand on police violence in black and brown communities. As a group we can’t be ambiguous about it and we can’t allow elected officials to be ambiguous about it. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Everything from here forward will be working toward achieving the demands. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Now closing in prayer. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
Prayer was a call and response.
We are dismissed. #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters 🧜🏻‍♀️
If you want to watch the meeting, here is the FB live stream link. #MarcusDavidPeters #HelpNotDeath 🧜🏻‍♀️


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More from @RVAdirt

Oct 8, 2018
WOW! Tomorrow is #RVACouncil. Did you almost forget? I did. Whew. Time flies.

Well let’s take a little look at this week’s agenda! #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
Citizen Comment has 1 person signed up. Eric will be speaking about the city’s neglect.

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I remember sitting in geometry class in 2005 and the kid in front of me had a “heritage not hate” shirt on depicting 4 “confederate heroes.” One of the “heroes” was Nathan Bedford Forrest. I tapped him on the shoulder and asked if he knew who Forrest was. (1/6)
He had no clue. I politely informed him of Forrest’s role within the KKK. He said “yeah? so?” and turned back around. This was a school that was extremely racially diverse; however, many of the white students would come to school flying confederate flags in their truck. (2/6)
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Aug 20, 2018
Tonight! #RPSBoard meets at 6PM in #RVACouncil chambers on the 2nd floor of city hall! Packed agenda with lots of interesting information. Some of the documents to be reviewed included in this thread. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
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Priorities 1, 2, and 3 are found in this tweet. 🧜🏻‍♀️
Strategic Plan priorities 4 and 5 are found in this tweet. #RPSBoard 🧜🏻‍♀️
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Aug 14, 2018
I want to pause really quick to be sure that I am crystal clear about my sentiments about media. Despite feeling like as individuals, we are community activists, I recognize the outward perception is that we are media who reports and often perception is reality. (1/14)
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Aug 7, 2018
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Read 66 tweets
Jul 25, 2018
In the name of accountability and transparency, #RVAMayor @LevarStoney, can you and your Police Chief clarify the @RichmondPolice press release today regarding the completion of the #MarcusDavidPeters investigation and what you and Durham have committed. #HelpNotDeath (1/14)
In this press release, it is stated that Durham will host a discussion AFTER the CA’s office reviews the report. Durham also states that the promised community meeting is to explain and educate.

Will this be a discussion or lecture? (2/14) #HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters
A lecture doesn’t seem to meet the family’s demand for Durham and Stoney to attend a community meeting to discuss police, procedures, and accountability. Durham’s statement sounds like an informational session about curriculum. (3/14)
#HelpNotDeath #MarcusDavidPeters
Read 15 tweets

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