On July 5, 2016, Alton Sterling was shot several times at close range while held down on the ground by two Baton Rouge Police officers. His death sparked widespread protests, which were met with heavily militarized police response and resulted in the arrest of over one hundred peaceful protesters. Then on March 27, 2018, almost two years later, it was announced that the officers who killed Alton Sterling will not be charged with any crime. This page provides information about the current state of policing in Baton Rouge and the ongoing work to end police violence and ensure justice for it's residents.
Facts About POLICING in Baton Rouge
- Alton Sterling was the 11th person shot and 6th person killed by Baton Rouge police officers since 2013.
- Black men were over 90% of those shot and 100% of those killed by BRPD since 2013 despite being only 25% of the population.
- One quarter of those shot by BRPD since 2013 were shot because they alleged a moving vehicle was coming towards them. US Department of Justice guidelines and many police departments prohibit officers from shooting in these situations.
- BRPD arrests black people at a rate 2.7 times higher per population than white people.
- Black people were 4.6 times more likely than white people to be arrested for marijuana possession in East Baton Rouge Parish in 2010 despite similar rates of using or selling marijuana.
- Of 35 use of force complaints against BRPD officers in 2014, not one officer was disciplined by BRPD following their internal investigations into these allegations.
- The Baton Rouge police force is disproportionately white. In 2013, white people were 70% of BRPD officers despite being only 41% of the Baton Rouge population.
- Only 20% of the Baton Rouge police force lives in the city where they police.
ANALYSIS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ADDRESSING POLICE VIOLENCE IN Baton Rouge
We were invited by the National Association for Social Justice in Baton Rouge to conduct an analysis of the facts of the Alton Sterling case and the underlying policies and practices of the Baton Rouge Police Department to help identify recommendations to ensure accountability and prevent further police violence in Baton Rouge. Click on the document below to read our analysis.