One Year After Police Shooting Death of Antwon Rose

Critics Still Working for Change

Joe DeStio
June 19, 2019 - 3:20 pm
One year after the shooting death of a black unarmed teenager by a white police officer, critics of police-community relations are still working for change.

Joe DeStio

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PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) – One year after the shooting death of a black unarmed teenager by a white police officer, critics of police-community relations are still working for change.

17 year old Antwon Rose was shot to death June 16, 2018 as he ran from East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld who says he thought Rose was armed. Rosfeld was acquitted by an out-of-county jury after four days of testimony and about four hours of deliberations.

Days of protests, largely by young people, followed the shooting and the verdict. The protests were largely calm and non-violent.

Since then, Allegheny County Councilman DeWitt Walton has worked for a proposed county-wide Citizens Police Review Board. Like a review board in the city of Pittsburgh, it would provide a forum to file complaints over police actions. Its findings would be advisory. But Walton has run into opposition.

“A significant body or number of council members (are) opposed to that proposed ordinance,” said Walton

Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald says suburban police departments, like their municipalities, want to remain independent.

“(There are) a hundred different police departments out there,” says Fitzgerald. “They’re autonomous. They get to set their own rules.”

The focus of local state lawmakers has been to rewrite laws governing police use of deadly force. A package of bills would also call for the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate any incident of deadly force, and require law enforcement agencies to keep detailed personnel records surrounding an officer leaving a job.

Khalil Darden to helped to lead protests surrounding Antwon’s death wants to see the use of force law changed.

“That’s the biggest thing for us as a community right now, to ensure that this doesn’t happen to another young black man in our community.”

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