The Push For #JusticeforTerranceKellom
The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan (ACLU) has called for the suspension of a federal multi-jurisdictional task force involved in the shooting of 20-year-old Terrance Kellom.
The union, joined by a coalition of local groups, filed the motion shortly after the Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Team (DFAT) executed a search warrant on the Kellom’s home on the city’s west side.
The task force includes members of the U.S. Marshals Service, Detroit Police Department, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office.
After entering the residence around 1 p. m. on April 28, ICE agent Mitchell Quinn fatally shot Kellom. Detroit police said Kellom approached the officer with a hammer, but Kellom’s father has disputed the account, saying his son was unarmed. Wayne County Prosecutors are investigating the incident.
In a letter addressed to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the ACLU requested that funding for DFAT be suspended until an investigation into the incident was completed.
“This collective statement was critical because the killing of Terrance Kellom—not unlike the police slaying of Freddie Gray in Baltimore and the deaths of black men nationwide at the hands of law enforcement—cannot be looked at in isolation,” said Mark Fancher, the staff attorney for the ACLU of Michigan Racial Justice Project, in a statement.
Quinn’s past is sketchy.
While working for the Detroit Police Department in 2008, he was criminally charged for allegedly pointing his department-issued gun at his wife’s head. In 2000, the city of Detroit paid $20,000 to settle a lawsuit involving the law enforcement officer and his partner Officer Eugene Brown. The two were sued for an alleged false arrest and assault and battery of a Detroit resident, according to MT.
Like the deaths of many young black men at the hands of police, the incident has sparked a series of online and offline protests. Activists are continuing to demand justice for Mr. Kellom, in hopes of raising awareness of the ongoing issue of police violence.